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  • Full Frame to MFT speed booster.

    The main advantage of full frame sensors is allegedly that being a larger surface area they capture more light than the micro four thirds. Four times as much in fact... and that shows in the DxO sports rating.

    Thus Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II being MFT rates at DxO 1312, while Panasonic Lumix DC-S1 has DxO 3333.

    However there are speed booster adapters that reduce a full frame image down to MFT and so, in theory one could get equivalent of 1312 x 4 = 5248 DxO out of the E-M1 using a good quality speed booster and a full frame lens... just wondering, did I understand that correctly?

    If so why would anyone "upgrade" to a full frame camera ?

    p.s. DxO sensor database can be found here: https://www.dxomark.com/Cameras/
    Last edited by Angelica; 4th December 2019, 07:31 PM. Reason: add dxo link

  • #2
    Re: Full Frame to MFT speed booster.

    I tested speed boosters with canon lens in my em1.2 and it works, but the speed of focusing is very slow.

    I learn that the issue is the battery power as many of DSLR lenses have to move a massive amount of glass compared with MFT design. It may work if you don’t need fast focus acquisition, in my case for birding is unusable.

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    • #3
      Personally I wouldnt worry about DXO findings , having had over the years many cameras from both canon and Nikon ,crop sensors,H sensors,full frame sensors in a variety of mega pixel sizes .. the Olympus knocks most of them for six .. with this provisio you really need fast glass ,large aperture lenses and keep the iso down as low as possible for best results ..
      We as users seem to delight in telling others what we use , guilty myself if we didnt and removed EXIF data no one would have a clue what camera or lens we were using
      Last edited by Ian; 13th December 2019, 10:43 AM.

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      • #4
        Re: Full Frame to MFT speed booster.

        Originally posted by Angelica View Post
        The main advantage of full frame sensors is allegedly that being a larger surface area they capture more light than the micro four thirds. Four times as much in fact... and that shows in the DxO sports rating.

        Thus Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II being MFT rates at DxO 1312, while Panasonic Lumix DC-S1 has DxO 3333.

        However there are speed booster adapters that reduce a full frame image down to MFT and so, in theory one could get equivalent of 1312 x 4 = 5248 DxO out of the E-M1 using a good quality speed booster and a full frame lens... just wondering, did I understand that correctly?

        If so why would anyone "upgrade" to a full frame camera ?

        p.s. DxO sensor database can be found here: https://www.dxomark.com/Cameras/
        A FF sensor is four times the area of a Four Thirds sensor but actual brightness is dictated by the lens aperture, not the size of the sensor.

        The benefit of FF is that photosites can be larger for the same overall image resolution. That does help with keeping noise at bay and dynamic range. But sensor design has improved dramatically and Four Thirds sensors today can deliver better noise and dynamic range than older lower resolution FF sensors.

        Another aspect of FF is that you get less depth of field for the same lens aperture setting for the same field of view. This can be good and bad. It's good if you want to limit the depth of field for creative blur. But that's not to say it can't be done with Four Thirds, it's achieved with longer lenses and larger apertures. For photography where you'd like to keep everything in focus FF is at a distinct disadvantage as you need to stop the lens right down, sacrificing a lot of brightness.

        Speed Boosters are like teleconverters that fit between a lens and the camera body. Put crudely, with a FF lens and a FT camera they modify the projection of the image seen by the lens so that the image fits onto the smaller area of the FT sensor.

        Concentrating a FF lens view on to a FT sensor does mean you will get a brighter lens but at a cost.

        A a speed booster is a compromise; there is an optical penalty and speed boosters will cost sharpness and contrast and introduce distortions. You could end up having to stop the lens down to recover some of the image quality losses.

        As already mentioned, focusing speed is an issue. FF lenses, especially older ones, have large glass masses to move precisely in order to focus. The type of focusing motors used will also often not be ideal for contrast-detect focusing.

        The bottom line is that speed boosters are an expensive curiosity that might be useful for certain situations but otherwise of very limited use - especially for the cost.

        Ian
        Founder and editor of:
        Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
        Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
        Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
        Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

        Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
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        • #5
          Re: Full Frame to MFT speed booster.
          Last edited by Ian; 13th December 2019, 10:44 AM.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Ian View Post
            Re: Full Frame to MFT speed booster.

            Concentrating a FF lens view on to a FT sensor does mean you will get a brighter lens but at a cost.

            A a speed booster is a compromise; there is an optical penalty and speed boosters will cost sharpness and contrast and introduce distortions. You could end up having to stop the lens down to recover some of the image quality losses.

            As already mentioned, focusing speed is an issue. FF lenses, especially older ones, have large glass masses to move precisely in order to focus. The type of focusing motors used will also often not be ideal for contrast-detect focusing.

            The bottom line is that speed boosters are an expensive curiosity that might be useful for certain situations but otherwise of very limited use - especially for the cost.

            Ian
            Speed booster reduce the size of the image so flaws in the original lens are less noticeable. (Unlike teleconverters which make them more noticeable). All of the lenses I've tried on mine have better IQ than when used with a standard dumb adapter.

            The focal reducer I have is a cheap dumb model with no AF at all. It cost ~£60 and has doubled the usefulness of most of my adapted lenses - Definitely good value for money. The various Metabones versions are allegedly better optically but too expensive for me to play with.
            Mine is not from Metabones so not a 'Speed booster' (which is their trade mark) but a third party equivalent (0.71x)
            Mike
            Compulsive photographic Dabbler.
            Flickr

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Petrochemist View Post

              Speed booster reduce the size of the image so flaws in the original lens are less noticeable. (Unlike teleconverters which make them more noticeable). All of the lenses I've tried on mine have better IQ than when used with a standard dumb adapter.

              The focal reducer I have is a cheap dumb model with no AF at all. It cost ~£60 and has doubled the usefulness of most of my adapted lenses - Definitely good value for money. The various Metabones versions are allegedly better optically but too expensive for me to play with.
              Mine is not from Metabones so not a 'Speed booster' (which is their trade mark) but a third party equivalent (0.71x)
              Aha! I both agree and disagree You are comparing a speedbooster to a teleconverter. I was really comparing the result using the lens on its native format camera. But any extra optics between the lens and the camera will sap image quality to a greater or lesser degree. But you are right in pointing out that a teleconverter magnifies the lack of sharpness in a lens, for example. This does actually happen with a speedbooster too, because the additional glass and surfaces does reduce resolution, but it won't necessarily be as noticeable. On the other hand, teleconverters are now often matched closely to the optics they would be attached to and so the effect on image quality can be minimised. But you certainly raise an interesting viewpoint on this that I hadn't previously considered.

              Ian
              Founder and editor of:
              Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
              Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
              Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
              Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

              Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
              Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
              Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
              NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
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              • #8
                Originally posted by Ian View Post

                Aha! I both agree and disagree You are comparing a speedbooster to a teleconverter. I was really comparing the result using the lens on its native format camera. But any extra optics between the lens and the camera will sap image quality to a greater or lesser degree. But you are right in pointing out that a teleconverter magnifies the lack of sharpness in a lens, for example. This does actually happen with a speedbooster too, because the additional glass and surfaces does reduce resolution, but it won't necessarily be as noticeable. On the other hand, teleconverters are now often matched closely to the optics they would be attached to and so the effect on image quality can be minimised. But you certainly raise an interesting viewpoint on this that I hadn't previously considered.

                Ian
                No, all my tests have been comparing a focal reducer to an adapter with no optics.
                Reducers will introduce some flaws of their own, but I've not found these noticeable on my budget model, the effect of shrinking the image circle makes the resolution look improved.
                .
                I just mentioned TCs because they always degrade the image to some extent. Most of my TCs are cheap models that degrade the image more than simply cropping, I have no experience with todays top of the line versions (or the super high quality lenses needed to get the best of them)
                Mike
                Compulsive photographic Dabbler.
                Flickr

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Petrochemist View Post

                  No, all my tests have been comparing a focal reducer to an adapter with no optics.
                  OK, but I think you mean a, let's say - FF lens on a (Micro) Four Thirds sensor camera, before and after using the reducer?

                  I was comparing to using the lens on a FF camea compared to using a reducer with the lens on smaller sensor camera.

                  Reducers will introduce some flaws of their own, but I've not found these noticeable on my budget model, the effect of shrinking the image circle makes the resolution look improved.
                  .
                  I just mentioned TCs because they always degrade the image to some extent. Most of my TCs are cheap models that degrade the image more than simply cropping, I have no experience with todays top of the line versions (or the super high quality lenses needed to get the best of them)
                  The reduction in size of the image circle is not really relevant because the sensor still covers the same field of view as the sensor for which the lens was originally designed for.

                  I know I am beginning to sound pernickety but in truth we're not really comparing the same things.

                  Ian
                  Founder and editor of:
                  Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
                  Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
                  Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
                  Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

                  Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
                  Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
                  Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
                  NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dave in Wales View Post
                    Re: Full Frame to MFT speed booster.

                    My experience with auto focus on telephoto has so far been very disappointing. Especially with moving targets it invariably gets it wrong, so this video

                    totally sold me on getting old manual focus lenses... I shall have to buy a new Olympus too as I want the focus peaking that Oly Air doesn't have. Making manual focus a non starter using a smartphone as view finder out in the bright sun.

                    Viltrox and Photodiox both do speed adaptors at a fraction of the cost of the Metabones.
                    Last edited by Ian; 13th December 2019, 10:45 AM.

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