Anyone that’s shot a DSLR in a remotely serious manner is aware of the crop factor for APS-C format cameras when compared to their full frame cousins. Nikon and Sony APS-C cameras yield a 1.5x crop factor, while Canon APS-C cameras have a 1.6x crop factor.
And, invariably, if you use the phrase “crop factor,” someone is going to yell at you and tell you that you aren’t cropping anything. However, the term is ubiquitous in identifying the altered field of view caused by using smaller sensors in cameras along with full frame lenses.
We also commonly use the phrase “equivalent focal length” to describe the change in the field of view as captured by an APS-C sensor. For instance, the popular Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 lenses have an 80mm equivalent focal length when used with a Canon Rebel series camera. Of course, most of us understand that this is a misnomer and that the 50mm lens does not change at all to become an 80mm lens when used on a different camera. It is simply that the 50mm lens has a narrower field of view on the Canon Rebel DSLR thanks to the smaller sensor.
Crop Factors on Medium Format Cameras
For those coming from a digital world to test the film waters with medium format cameras, the 35mm crop factor for medium format lenses and film types can be confusing when a 50mm lens can be ultra-wide and a 90mm lens is considered a normal lens. [Read more…]