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Thread: Format: 16:9 or 4:3 ?

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    Ausphotography Regular landyvlad's Avatar
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    Format: 16:9 or 4:3 ?

    What format do people usually have their digital cameras set to?

    Mine was on 4:3 and I tried 16:9 and then found later that I lost some off the top and bottom of the image - didn't realise it at the time.

    What's the pros and cons of each?
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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Is this for video? My cams are 6:4.

    However, in most applications of aspect ratio on offer there is an amount of cropping (masking) of the sensor.

    If you have any given lens, 16:9 still gives you the same horizontal angle of view. You'd want to change to a wider lens
    for real panoramic effect.

    It's mostly to match the screens of most modern TVs, monitors, etc.

    - - - Updated - - -

    PS: I meant my still cams.
    Another PS: What a turn-off in the past when in department stores they would stretch a 4:3 TV image to
    16:9 and everyone had moon-faces!!

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yet another PS: With a 16:9 crop already, you reduce the ability to crop the image further.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    Member CathyC's Avatar
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    I would leave it on 4:3 - you can crop to any aspect ratio for digital display later.
    I have found cropping using a 4:5 or 2:3/4:6 aspect ratio is best for prints (8" x 10" or 8" x 12")
    hope this helps
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    Cheers, very handy.
    Back to 4:3 it is.

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    It really depends on your camera sensor format. I'd leave it on its native aspect ratio to use the whole sensor.
    If there's a display frame line option on your camera, some people prefer to use an alternative preferred framing (eg. 16:9), so it's easier to visualize in that framing but still shoot at the native ratio for more freedom on crop.
    There're also some cameras (some of the Panasonic GH and LX lines come to mind) that have oversized sensors for more freedom of crop but the downside is I don't think you're able to use the entire sensor or even if it could be enabled, you'd likely see some heavy vignetting as most lenses will only project an image circle just big enough for their native format.
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    I like my computer more than my camera farmmax's Avatar
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    Use the native aspect ratio of your camera to cover all the sensor. Cropping what you don't want later, is easy.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by swifty View Post
    ......
    There're also some cameras (some of the Panasonic GH and LX lines come to mind) that have oversized sensors for more freedom of crop but the downside is I don't think you're able to use the entire sensor ......
    I remember some Panasonic models having this feature too.
    When you set it to a wide aspect ratio it captured more pixels on the long edge than it otherwise would if it were set to the std 4:3 ratio.
    I had a quick look at the FZ200 and it appears this camera doesn't have this feature.

    So as already said, just use the entire sensor and crop later.

    Do note that while you may be doing this for a situation you find yourself in now(I'm assuming that you're viewing something like desktop backgrounds on a 16:9 screen ) .. this may change at a later date to a different scenario where your next screen may be the more traditional looking 16:10 aspect ratio .. or even a wider one which are now currently becoming more popular(such as 21:9 or whatever else is going on).
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    Member channeL7's Avatar
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    My thinking is that starting with the maximum image the sensor can deliver is preferable. You can always crop with any software or even on your phone (if you do WiFi transfer). Just my 2 cents.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by landyvlad View Post
    What's the pros and cons of each?
    A vertically oriented image of a person might look rather "different" in a 16:9 ratio. That is an immediate con that comes to mind.

    I think it boils down to what you are making an image of at the time. Having the choice of different ratios to experiment with is a good thing to me, you can frame a landscape, for example, and capture it it in different ratios at the push of a button ( or 3 ) and compare the results instantly. You may find that you look at the composition of the scene differently in each ratio and end up with a more pleasing result from one over another. You might find that to achieve that more pleasing result you have moved the camera to an entirely different perspective in 16:9 compared to 4:3. That perspective adjustment that resulted in a more pleasing image may not have been apparent in the native 4:3 ratio and not possible to crop to that differently placed perspective in software later.

    Go forth and experiment, be prepared to change settings a lot and find out what suits you the best.
    Andrew
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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Hi Ak83, the models I know of are the GH1 and 2, and the LX100 but there may be more. Panasonic calls it multi aspect ratio sensors.

    I@M: good point regarding the framing decisions. I mentioned the guide frame lines above and some cameras such as an Olympus E-M1 and Leica Q allow these frame line projections that are only guides whilst still shooting the entire native frame. In the Leica Q, the reviewers mentioned that by doing so and shooting in RAW, when importing the pictures into Lightroom it shows up with your in-camera crop but if you dislike it you can then un-crop your selection to get the entire native frame.

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    Thanks all. By the sound of it I'm best using the 4:3 as a general rule, except when experimenting.

    Cheers

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    Ausphotography Regular Filter's Avatar
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    Now I have gone looking at my Canons to double check....Looks like they are default to 3:2. Should I look at changing this??
    Filter


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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Filter.
    You have 7D and 70D listed in your signature.

    7D is 3:2.You can't change it for stills (AFAIK), but it does have a 4:3 AND 16:9 video modes.

    The 70D does have a variety of aspect ratios you can select for stills.

    I don't know what you mean by "should".

    Am.

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    Ausphotography Regular Filter's Avatar
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    I don't know what you mean by "should".
    Me either Am, thanks for clearing it up for me

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    Ausphotography Regular J.davis's Avatar
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    I use native Nikon D750 and crop to 16x9. TV is 16x9 so I view all my pics on the telly at full screen.

    Crappy phone pic

    20150601-20150601_201313-2-2.jpg

    Crop to whatever in LR for printing.
    Regards
    John
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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    I like your 16:9 clock-face

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