Full-frame VS. APS-C is a hot topic in the photography world. Most people looking to buy a camera try to figure out the main differences between APS-C cameras and full frame cameras so they can choose the best camera. If you also want to know the key differences between these two widely used camera types, you've come to the right place. In this article, we'll discuss some of the key differences between APS-C cameras and full-frame cameras. We'll also list their pros and cons at the end of the article. So, let's get started!
The biggest difference between full frame and APS-C is size.
This starts with the birth of 135 film. After Germany developed the LEIKA camera for shooting 35mm (36mm × 24mm) film in the 1820s, the 35mm film was also called the Leica roll. Later, the number of cameras used by manufacturers to shoot 35mm film increased, and the name of Leica roll was no longer widely applicable, so the market changed its name to 35mm film according to the width of the film. Then in order to distinguish the film film from the bulk photographic film, people printed the code name of 135 on the film box, so this unified statement was formed, the 35mm film was called 135 film, and the camera with 35mm film was called 135 camera.
In the digital age, there is no longer the concept of film, and most of them are suitable for photosensitive elements such as CMOS or CCD. Then when the size of the photosensitive element is equivalent to the film size of the 135 camera at that time (36mm × 24mm), such a machine is called a full-frame camera. In 1996, five major manufacturers, Kodak, Canon, Nikon, Minolta, and Fuji, jointly developed the APS system, aiming to provide more convenience for camera system application. The APS system at that time was divided into three frames, namely APS-H (30.3mm×16.6mm), APS-C (23.6mm×15.6mm), and APS-P (30.3mm×10.1mm). This is the origin of APS-C. Most of the non-full-frame cameras we currently use are APS-C systems.
So how does the difference in size affect the imaging? From a full-frame perspective:
1. Better noise control under the same pixel. We theoretically believe that the higher the pixel, the finer the photo, but there will be photoelectric interference between the pixels between the camera CMOS, the greater the pixel density, the higher the noise at high sensitivity will be more serious. The size of the full frame is larger, which also means that under the same pixel, the arrangement density of each pixel is more reasonable, reducing photoelectric interference.
2. Better latitude Tolerance refers to the range that CMOS can correctly accommodate the brightness contrast of the scene. In an environment with a large light ratio, a camera with high latitude can better preserve the details of both bright and dark parts. This makes more sense when shooting straight out of JPEG.
3. Wider viewing angle
We can see that the breadth of view of the full-frame camera is significantly better than that of the half-frame camera. More elements can be accommodated in the same position, and it also brings more convenience to framing and shooting. This breadth cannot be solved by taking a few steps back, because when you change the position, the perspective and perspective relationship of the foreground, middle ground, and background will also change.
4. Lens selection is more abundant
5. The overall weight and volume are larger
The larger size also means a larger body, and the overall volume and weight of the full frame will be higher than that of the APS-C frame, which is also an unavoidable annoyance for picture quality.
Now, when you understand the main differences between APS-C and full frame cameras, it's ime to discuss their pros and cons.
Pros and cons of full-frame cameras
▪ Better low light performance
▪ Provides wider dynamic range
▪ High resolution
▪ No crop factor
▪ Better and easier lens selection
▪ Heavier and larger
Pros and cons of APS-C cameras
▪ Small size and light weight
▪ cost effective
▪ Longer coverage
▪ Provides greater depth of field
▪ Poor lens selection
▪ Crop factor issues
▪ Higher ISO performance is lower
From the above discussion, you have realized that neither camera format is the best. Choose one of the camera formats depending on your current needs.