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A few questions on photography terminology
So, I 've been lurking around a while and am learning quite a bit, but there are a few things that keep throwing me off. Just for clarification, can someone please explain:.

What does 100% crop mean?.

What does wide open mean?.

What does a 1.6 crop camera mean?.

What does it mean when a lens is soft?.

When talking about aperture and stopping down, which direction are you going? Bigger or smaller?.

What do they mean when they say a lens is fast or slow?.

I know I will have some more questions like this one that I'll post when they occurr to me...

Comments (9)

Niceguymr wrote:.

So, I 've been lurking around a while and am learning quite a bit,but there are a few things that keep throwing me off. Just forclarification, can someone please explain:.

What does 100% crop mean?.

That you crop the photo so that just a small portion is dsiplayed which will be at the native resolution so it might be 800 x 600 pixels which would fit almost any screen. Usually it will be something like 400 x 400. It is sued to show "pixel peep" and show how good the image output froma particular camera or setting is..

What does wide open mean?.

That the aperture on the camera is at it's maximum. That will usually be somewhere between f/2.8 and f/5.6 on most zoom lenses. It will commonly vary with the zoom setting unless you have something like an f/2.8 constant lens..

What does a 1.6 crop camera mean?.

It means the camera has an area on which the photo is "developed" which is the size of a 35mm film negative divided by 1.6. This size is also often called and APS size sensor. Most DSLRs have this size sensor.

What does it mean when a lens is soft?.

Strictly it is not the lens that is soft but the image that it produces that is soft. Soft is the opposite of sharp. Typically a lens will have a "sweet spot" - an aperture where it is at it's sharpest. Most lenses are at their least sharp when wide open..

When talking about aperture and stopping down, which direction areyou going? Bigger or smaller?.

You are reducing the aperture size i.e going to a higher number..

What do they mean when they say a lens is fast or slow?.

A fast lens has a very wide aperture - typically f/2.8 on a zoom and maybe f/1.4 or f/1.8 on a prime (non-zoom) lens. A slow lens has a maximum aperture which is less wide typically f3.5 at the wide end and f/5.6 at the tele end..

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #1

Niceguymr wrote:.

What does 100% crop mean?.

This is a nasty expression that comes from the graphics world. It is a selected area of an image that has not been resized. In other words, each pixel that is presented in the selection represents one pixel from the original. The correct term is actual pixels, and this is how it is notated in Photoshop, but almost everyone uses the confusing 100% crop..

Lets face it, if you crop 100% then you would have nothing. Or at best it would mean the whole image..

What does wide open mean?.

The term is used to describe a lens used at it's maximum aperture. So a 50 mm f/1.8 lens, for example, would be wide open when the aperture is set to f/1.8..

It probably worth noting that on SLR cameras, exposure, metering, and focusing are all done wide open, even if a smaller aperture is set. The diaphragm doesnt close down the aperture until the shutter release button is pressed..

What does a 1.6 crop camera mean?.

It means that the sensor is 1.6x smaller than a 35 mm film frame. 35 mm film frames are actually 36 x 24 mm..

What does it mean when a lens is soft?.

A lens is soft when it isnt sharp, that is that it cant resolve detail well. Less expensive lenses are usually softer. Zooms that cover a large range of focal lengths are usually softer, especially at the extremes of their range. Most lenses are softer at their edges than their centres. Lenses are generally softer wide-open than stopped down a couple of stops..

When talking about aperture and stopping down, which direction areyou going? Bigger or smaller?.

Smaller apertures and smaller actual numbers, in practice Big BUT &.

F-stops are the ratio of the focal length of the lens and the diameter of the aperture. So with an aperture of 25 mm on a 50 mm focal length lens, you would have 1/2 or f 1/2. Since the one in the numerator is always there, it is most often left one, and this would be written f/2 (notice the slash is still there..

So when we talk of f/2 (eff two) it is really f 1/2. So the f-numbers get bigger as the aperture gets smaller..

What do they mean when they say a lens is fast or slow?.

A fast lens has a wide (large) maximum aperture. A slow lens would have a relatively small maximum aperture. A lens with a relatively large (small f-number) would be slow..

It is because for a given amount of light, a lens that has a larger maximum aperture could use a faster shutter speed, to achieve the same exposure. Every stop wider allows a halving of the shutter speed..

(And there is another nasty usage, shutter speed. It is actually a duration not a speed. It is the time that the shutter remains open during the exposure.).

Brian A...

Comment #2

No I am not. I actually did write most of what you wrote 2 hours before you did (and just minutes after the OP's post).

Did you not have the courtesy to read my post before answering? The thread could not have been shorter..

By all means amplify but was there really an need to repeat what I said as if I did not exist?.

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #3

Oh dear are you offended, I am so sorry. I did read your post and it was so godly that I was temped to avoid any conflicting post, but I put that aside and decided that a parallel post would be informative to the OP..

I thought you description of 100% crops a little lacking, but most else true..

Oh god help me for I have sinned, many times..

God forbid a difference in interpretation..

Oh lord, we beseech you, Amen..

Oh lord, what is your description of a forum, so that I may know better in the future not to transgress on your hollowed opion?.

Am I halucinating?.

Keep taking the drugs.

Brian A...

Comment #4

Arrogance and sarcasm do not become you..

By all means do a parallel post (Note my comment "... by all means amplify"). All you had to do was say something like "I agree with most of what Chris says but here is my take on it ..." or as I often do "You already have answers to your questions but a couple more comments ..." Several of your replies added to what I had said informatively but failing to acknowledge my post was dismissive, beliittling and smacks of ego..

Your reply demonstrates that you are knowledgeable (Sadly that is not true of all who seek to give advice here). Maybe I should expect no more on the internet but I have higher hopes and expectations of serious contributors (of whom you are one) to this forum. Acknowledgement of the efforts of others is both courteous and civil. Perhaps my expectations of forum ettiquette are too high. But surely they should be aspired to? Would you not agree?.

In conversation I would "defer" to a preceeding contributor. Why shoud it be different on line?.

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #5

Why does Acronym get spelt Acronymymymyms? I've seen this several times...

Comment #6

Because people can't spell, but at least figure out that readers will know what they mean..

BAK..

Comment #7

Http://www.pbase.com/otfchallenge/resources.

Check the explanation of 100% crop and 'the basics'...I think you'll find them helpful..

LucyU ZI owner!Olympus C30-20Zhttp://www.pbase.com/lucyFCAS Member #98, Oly Division'Photography is the art of seeing what others do not.'.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #8

The only thing I'd add..

The 1.6 crop is compared to a 35mm film camera..

The end result is that the same focal length lens if used on a 35mm camera and if used on a so-cvalled 1.6 camera captures a different amount of subject (when used at the same distance..

Imagine, in broad strokes, that you are looking at an 8x12 print taken with a 35mm camera. Now imagine you cut off the eddges so that all you have left is a 5x7 print..

The 5x7 area is about what the 1.6 lens "sees.".

When people are experienced with 35mm cameras and have a sense of what focal length to use to capture what amount of subject from what distance, knowing that a digital camera is a 1.6 model (many Canons) or a 1.5 model (all current Nikons) lets them do some math and conclude what lens to use to get the field of view they want, compartewd to their knowledge of what a lens captures on a 35mm camera..

FOR NEWCOMERS all you need to start learning is how much subject matter is captured by cvvarous focal lenths on your digital camera. i.e. 12mm lens is ultra wide angle. 20mm lens is moderate wide angle. 50mm lens is short telephoto. 200mm is long telephoto..

BAK..

Comment #9

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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