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Thread started 04 Jun 2012 (Monday) 08:39
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5d3 (or any full frame) viewfinder question

 
nccb
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Jun 04, 2012 08:39 |  #1

I have a T2i currently and have had it for a while - so I've never really known anything other than that viewfinder - it never had bothered me bc I knew no different. Recently I got on to a film kick and so I bought an A-1 and Olympus OM-1 off CL & ebay and for a few weeks haven't touched my T2i, only been playing with the film cameras. I came back to my T2i for something yesterday and literally thought something was wrong with the viewfinder because it seemed extraordinarily tiny. I quickly realized that my eye had become used to the gigantic viewfinder on the old 35mm cameras (A-1 and OM-1) during those few weeks. And now the T2i seems annoyingly small to look through.

So finally my question - does the 5d3, or really any full frame digital camera, have a viewfinder that is close to the size and awesomeness of the older 35mm cameras?

And followup question - does viewfinder size explicitly correlate to sensor size? Put differently, will a 1.6 crop, such as my T2i, have a 1.6 crop on the viewfinder as well? Or are there other factors in play when it comes to the viewfinder?


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Sorarse
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Jun 04, 2012 08:44 |  #2

Your viewfinder shows what will be captured by your sensor, give or take a few percent for some cameras that don't have a 100% viewfinder. As a result, full frame cameras will have a bigger viewfinder, similar to the 35mm film cameras you have, to show what will be captured by the bigger sensor.


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Phrasikleia
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Jun 04, 2012 08:44 |  #3

https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=465469


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nccb
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Jun 04, 2012 09:51 |  #4

Phrasikleia - awesome. I did a brief search but didn't see that one. I will give that a careful read.

OMG - the OM-1 has a huge view - nothing else compares. I wish someone could just cram a digital sensor in my OM-1.


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Phrasikleia
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Jun 04, 2012 10:39 |  #5

nccb wrote in post #14528959 (external link)
Phrasikleia - awesome. I did a brief search but didn't see that one. I will give that a careful read.

OMG - the OM-1 has a huge view - nothing else compares. I wish someone could just cram a digital sensor in my OM-1.

Yeah, it's a pity that DSLRs don't have such large viewfinders. It's all relative, though. I recently spent some time shooting with an old Rolleiflex TLR (medium format) camera, and that made the viewfinders in my 35mm film cameras look dinky!


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sandpiper
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Jun 04, 2012 11:05 |  #6

Phrasikleia wrote in post #14529204 (external link)
Yeah, it's a pity that DSLRs don't have such large viewfinders. It's all relative, though. I recently spent some time shooting with an old Rolleiflex TLR (medium format) camera, and that made the viewfinders in my 35mm film cameras look dinky!

Yeah, but at least the view isn't reversed and swinging the opposite way from the camera :lol:




  
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noisejammer
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Jun 04, 2012 12:32 |  #7

I have (and use) an OM 2, it's viewfinder is similar to the view in the 5D2. The OM series achieves 1:1 magnification with a 55mm lens compared with the Canon system's 50mm. (Both observations are my best estimate from holding the camera vertical and keeping both eyes open.)

The EOS autofocus system steals about 37% of the light going through the lens. In effect you loose about a third of a stop compared with the OM system. The difference in magnification (5D2 : 0.71x cf OM-1 : 0.92x) actually makes the 5D2 appear a third of a stop brighter.


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Jun 04, 2012 12:56 as a reply to  @ noisejammer's post |  #8

I have film 300 Rebel EOS with viewfinder better described as the Crap. Surprisely, it has very good AF, then all points are enabled.
I have 500D with little, dark OVF, it is better compare to film Rebel, but still difficult to MF for macro and on large apertures.
5Dc viewfinder is large and bright.


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davidc502
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Jun 04, 2012 13:25 |  #9

nccb wrote in post #14528594 (external link)
I have a T2i currently and have had it for a while - so I've never really known anything other than that viewfinder - it never had bothered me bc I knew no different. Recently I got on to a film kick and so I bought an A-1 and Olympus OM-1 off CL & ebay and for a few weeks haven't touched my T2i, only been playing with the film cameras. I came back to my T2i for something yesterday and literally thought something was wrong with the viewfinder because it seemed extraordinarily tiny. I quickly realized that my eye had become used to the gigantic viewfinder on the old 35mm cameras (A-1 and OM-1) during those few weeks. And now the T2i seems annoyingly small to look through.

So finally my question - does the 5d3, or really any full frame digital camera, have a viewfinder that is close to the size and awesomeness of the older 35mm cameras?

And followup question - does viewfinder size explicitly correlate to sensor size? Put differently, will a 1.6 crop, such as my T2i, have a 1.6 crop on the viewfinder as well? Or are there other factors in play when it comes to the viewfinder?

Looks like you've made the same mistake I made when I started playing around with my old Canon Elan Film camera. Suddenly I realized what I've been looking through on my t2i, and from that point forward had to get a 35mm digital. I settled on the 5dmk2. It could be that you will be going down the same road.

Another thing.... Once you go to the 5dmk2, you suddenly realize the T2i's focus system isn't as good as you thought it once was, and they say the 5dmk2's isn't good..... Wow.


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KCMO ­ Al
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Jun 04, 2012 13:26 |  #10

I believe this has nothing to do with the size of the sensor but with the light transmission method from the lens to the viewfinder. The 5Ds use a porro prism (all glass) while the lesser bodies use a series of mirrors. You can see the difference by looking at the size of the hump where the system is located. Correct me if I'm incorrect.


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Jun 04, 2012 13:32 |  #11

I have not used a FF digital, but have a few old film cameras and am jealous of the viewfinder on them too...an old Minolta I have even lets my bad yes Manually focus things. The viewfinder on my 7D is much larger than the one on my 50D, had not noticed until shooting them back to back this weekend.


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AJSJones
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Jun 04, 2012 14:04 |  #12

KCMO Al wrote in post #14530038 (external link)
I believe this has nothing to do with the size of the sensor but with the light transmission method from the lens to the viewfinder. The 5Ds use a porro prism (all glass) while the lesser bodies use a series of mirrors. You can see the difference by looking at the size of the hump where the system is located. Correct me if I'm incorrect.

That makes a difference in the brightness but the size of the main mirror is a bigger factor - between crop and FF: the mirror is smaller on the crop :D The size of the prism and the viewing lens also affect things.


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FlyingPhotog
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Jun 04, 2012 14:19 |  #13

There's also the theory that experienced photographers know how to frame at 100% so they don't cut anything off the sides...

Inexperienced shooters benefit from having some "cushion" built into the scene so even if they put an elbow or something hard up against the side of the frame, having less than a 100% VF will leave some room around the edges.


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