Wednesday, November 16, 2011

It might be a tight fit, but it seems you can fit a full frame sensor in the Fuji

43rumors broke out a set of screenshots of what supposed to be the upcoming Fuji X camera. And the biggest question was, what was the sensor size? Fuji has claimed that they have developed a sensor that beats the performance of current full frame sensor. That raises question of whether you need a full frame sensor to beat the performance of current full frame sensors. Well, the DXOmark benchmark has shown that the sony APS-C sensor meets that of the Canon 5D Mark II. Sensor size, turns out, to be not the determinant for image quality. Even smaller size sensor can meet or beat the full frame sensor. Instead, sensor generation, or technology advancement, is the factor that determines the image quality. By extension, to beat the performance of current full frame sensors, you can take that sony APS-C sensor technology and cut a larger sensor instead. And guaranteed, that will beat all current full frame sensor image performance.
Now, the question is, would Fuji put a full frame sensor on their Fuji X?
What the leaks have shown, is what appears to be a set of photographs of photos of the prototype Fuji X displayed on a windows computer monitor. Inception. The image quality is abysmal, and I wish we could get our hands on the original pics so I could perhaps tweak it to see what's inside the hole of the body to see the sensor size. But let's work with what we got.
The full frame sensor is defined as 36mm x 24mm. While an APS-C sensor is at  22.2mm x 14.8mm as you can see on the two canon bodies here:



One thing that's weird from the leak is that the viewfinder is round. And when I leveled out the dark part of one of the leaked photo, you could see a cylindrical thing on the inside of the sensor hole. I wonder if they put a lens to gather the light to get the Full Frame round image that they could crop to various aspect ratio.

But anyway, I took two of their pics that depicts the front part of the camera, one with the lens attached, and one with the mount exposed. The one pic with the lens attached has a hand holding the camera. That could be used for a reference. I measured my thumb and got an approximately 2cm diameter. Now, I have a rather large hands, so if this hand belongs to a smaller Asian person, or even a woman, the hole would've been larger, but measuring for the scale, you could put a full frame sensor (blue rectangle) in there. AND certainly an APS-C sensor (yellow rectangle).

Here's another superimposure with the lens side:


The only strange thing is that they put the pins on a corner instead of the top or bottom side where there's so many space. Hmm...

If anything, they got the form factor right. I don't like the round viewfinder but here's something that Panasonic and Olympus can learn from.

The only huddle the Fuji X would need to come over would be the comparison to a Leica. I hope the Fuji marketing team has a good spiel to not make everyone make this out as a "poor man's Leica". That can be done by meeting and beating the Leica full frame sensor and lens performance. Technologically speaking, we should be there by now.
Just one question: Where's the dedicated movie record button, Fuji? And a shutter release button would be nice too, I guess?


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