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Sensor Sizes and Crop

Crop Factors is the cropping that a sensor does of the image it is presented from a camera lens. The overview.

Today the number of cameras on the market is huge. These vary from small, highly portable pro-sumer cameras, to high-end digital cinema cameras. At the heart of all of these digital cameras is the sensor – the part of the camera that captures the image.

The range of sensor sizes varies greatly from 1/3 inch sensors in the consumer space through to very large sensors including full format and larger in DSLR and cinema cameras. Generally speaking the larger the sensor, the bigger the resolution of capture, and therefore potentially better picture quality. However it doesn’t always correlate. There are lots of different options – lens quality, codec choice, capture bitrate. They all play a part.

Sensor cropping is the amounting of cropping of the image that occurs in certain filming scenarios. For example, in some cameras you have a 4K sensor, but can film and then interpolate (reduce) that down to HD resolution, which gives a higher quality capture. Whereas other cameras will have a 4K sensor, but will only crop the capture and use part of the sensor, perhaps the centre of the sensor, to record the 1920x1080 HD image. This is not the same as Crop Factors!

Crop Factors is the cropping that a sensor does of the image it is presented from a camera lens. A lens captures the image as a circle, and feeds that image to a sensor. This naturally has a crop, as TV pictures are rectangular not circular, so there is a crop factor when the picture is acquired. The smaller the sensor, the larger the cropping of the image, however it isn’t as simple as that. If you are making large landscape GVs or films, then a larger sensor will work well, however for sports of wildlife acquisition, using long lenses, there is often a high crop factor anyway.

1/3 Zoll / 4,8x3,6mm / Cropfaktor 7,2




2/3 Zoll / 8,8x6,6mm / Cropfaktor 3,9






Blackmagic Pocket / 12,5x7mm / Cropfaktor 3,02






1 Zoll / 13,2x8,8mm / Cropfaktor 2,7






Blackmagic 2.5K / 15,8x8,8mm / Cropfaktor 2,39






MFT / 17,3x13mm / Cropfaktor 2






Canon 7D II / 22,3x14,9mm / Cropfaktor 1,61






AJA CION / 22,5x11,9mm / Cropfaktor 1,7


RED RAVEN / 23x10,8mm / Cropfaktor 1,7






APS-C / 23,5x15,6mm / Cropfaktor 1,53






Arri Alexa / Amira 16:9 Modus / 23,8x13,4mm / Cropfaktor 1,58






Arri Alexa 4:3 Modus / 23,8x17,8mm /Cropfaktor 1,46






Sony F5 / F55 / FS5 / FS7 / FS7 II / 24x12,7mm / Cropfaktor 1,59






Panasonic VariCam 35 / LT / 24,5x12,9mm / Cropfaktor 1,56






Canon C-Series / 24,6x13,8mm / Cropfaktor 1,53






Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K / 25,3x14,2mm /Cropfaktor 1,49






RED Scarlet -W / 25,6x13,5mm / Cropfaktor 1,49






RED Mysterium X / 27,7x14,6mm / Cropfaktor 1,38






Arri Alexa Open Gate Modus / 28,17x18,13mm / Cropfaktor 1,29






RED Dragon 6K / 30,7x15,8mm / Cropfaktor 1,25






Vollformat / 36x24mm / Cropfaktor 1


Red Weapon 8K / 40,96x21,6mm / Cropfaktor 0,93






Arri Alexa 65 / 54,12x25,59mm / Cropfaktor 0,72

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