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Old Mar 18, 2017, 12:09 AM   #1
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Default Ultrazoom or larger sensor on Bridge Camera

I am considering purchasing a "Bridge" camera to eliminate carrying my lenses with me. It seems that there are ultrazooms with smaller sized sensors and then moderate zoom with larger sensors.

My question is, which would produce a better quality image....an ultrazoom camera (lens) with a small sensor or a cropped image from a camera with a larger sensor?

Thanks in advance
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Old Mar 18, 2017, 2:30 AM   #2
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Larger sensor cameras will produce better quality images.Smaller sensor cameras will produce good images in good light,mostly bright sunny daytimes.The trade off will be between image quality and the reach of the zoom.Smaller sensor will give more reach.
I have used Panasonic smaller sensor cameras with amazing results for daytime work.You must choose between reach and image quality.

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Old Mar 18, 2017, 11:05 AM   #3
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Inherently, larger sensors produce images with less noise.

Inherently, smaller sensors are easier to make lenses for, and thus, good lenses for.

Inherently, lenses perform better in the center than they do at the edges and corners.

If we presume that a lens for a larger sensor can project an image that is equal in quality, in the center, to the image projected by a lens with a longer 35mm equivalent focal length, for a smaller sensor from edge to edge and corner to corner, the question becomes "Can a Bridge Camera with a higher resolution sensor produce a cropped image that is better than an edge to edge image from an Ultrazoom Camera?"

Bridge Cameras:
  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ2500 - 20MP 1" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-480mm.
  • Sony Cyber-shot RX10 III - 20MP 1" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-600mm.
  • Canon PowerShot G3 X - 20MP 1" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-600mm.
Ultrazoom Cameras:
  • Canon PowerShot SX710 HS - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 25-750mm.
  • Canon PowerShot SX720 HS - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-960mm.
  • Canon PowerShot SX540 HS - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-1200mm.
  • Nikon Coolpix B700 - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-1440mm.
  • Nikon Coolpix A900 - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 24-840mm.
  • Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX400V - 20MP 1/2.3" sensor and a lens with a (35mm equivalent) focal length of 25-1200mm.
These all have 20MP sensors. If you were to crop an image from a camera with 1" sensor so that the angle of view would be similar to what you'd get from a camera with a 1/2.3" sensor, you'd end up with a 5MP image, and while it would likely have less noise, the individual errant pixels would be more obtrusive.

If there was a difference in the resolutions of the different sizes of image sensors, then the answer might be different, but I think you'd be better off with an Ultrazoom Camera.
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Old Mar 19, 2017, 2:04 AM   #4
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The real question, that only you can answer, is whether or not you'll ever need a lens with a 35mm equivalent focal length of longer than 600mm. That's pretty long, and anything smaller or farther away than you would use a focal length like that for, would likely not be visible to the naked eye, so you wouldn't know it was there for you to photograph.

So if you're not ever likely to need a 35mm equivalent focal length of longer than 600mm, then a Bridge Camera will provide better image quality.
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