A simple but very direct way of showing the difference between full frame and crop sensor

Do check out my lens blog for more info but I had to share this very simple video that really shows just how MASSIVE the difference is between a full frame sensor on the 5DmkII and the one in the 7D/ T2i…I did not make this. Mike Collins did. I should have done as it really is useful! Thanks to Mike for letting me use this on my blog…

Please do not look at this as an aesthetic test as it seems the cameras don’t quite match, just use it to see the difference in the field of view…

5Dmk2/7D lens comparison test from Mike Collins on Vimeo.

This is a short test with the tripod in the same spot switching between prime lenses to show how the crop affects the 7D.

We go from 20mm all the way to 100mm.

Thanks to Mike Collins for this video.


  1. The crop differences are really huge, but unless you started using DSLRs now, this shouldn’t be news.

    Regarding image quality, I’m actually disappointed. I’m a 7D owner and have been wishing to get a 5D Mark II for a while now, but they don’t actually look much different.

  2. Nice little demo. Here’s a set of stills comparing the 50mm on the 5D to the 28mm and 35mm on the 7D


    side note: I tried signing into your blog with my twitter account and got an error:

    Catchable fatal error: Object of class WP_Error could not be converted to string in /home/philip/public_html/wp-includes/formatting.php on line 2772

      1. Yeah i didn’t set the cameras up exactly the same. the tripod was in the same place as was the subject. That was it. I didn’t light it other than throwing up two LED panels as it’s a dark corner of our office space.

        It wasn’t a test of the aesthetics at all just made as a field guide for me and the other shooters I work with so we could have a quick live reference on shoots.

  3. Thats a cool post but if you made five steps backwards on the 7D and did the same test that to me would be more interesting beacause it would show the true difference between these cameras and not just a difference in framing.

    1. This is a test showing the difference the crop makes on the field of view. For what you are suggesting you should just watch the Zacuto shootout as that shows the difference in aesthetic

  4. Very effective presentation. For my wildlife vids I use my telephotos + stacked teleconverters with the 7D to effectively get “up close and personal” with as many pixels on target as I can. But I prefer the look of the 5D2 for the establishing enviro shots, especially in low light. But thanks. My daughter caught this tweet and is sniveling for her own 5D to replace her T1i for her Toronto urban guerilla shots. LOL

  5. Mr. Bloom,

    Thank you for your hard work and expertise. You have my humble respect.

    Could you tell us the actual distance between the image plane and the subject in the above video? I’m guessing 6ft. I am deciding between a 5D and a 7D.

    Kind regards,

  6. Nice…
    Mike should also have shown differences between fisheye lenses.
    Luckly, I found out before cashing out a lot of money on a fisheye that would end up giving almost no fisheye effect on my T2i APS-C…

    Ditching the 15mm diagonal for the 8mm or even the 4.5mm circular APS-C specific from Sigma.

    Maybe a superimposed shot would also add some info to it, but I dunno.

    Still, very useful video. Far easier to grasp then looking at tutorials and pics.

    1. I don’t have any fisheye lenses 🙁

      The only non traditional lens I have is the Lensbaby Composer which is sort of a poor man’s tilt shift. It allows you to turn the entire lens to selectively target what you want to focus on and blow everything else away.

  7. Theres something i still dont understand, you are using the same lense on both cameras? There should not be a factor in the smaller chip camera, so a 35mm doesnt really mean a 35mm or something like that??

      1. when using small chip cameras, isnt there a way to calculate the lense equivalente as if it was on a full frame chip camera?

        i mean if i want the angle of view of a 28mm but im using a 7D which lense should i use and how to know?

        PD: sorry for bad english

    1. A certain lens has a field of view depending on the size of the chip the point of this vid – the 7d has a smaller chip and sees less of the image projected by the lens

      there is linguistic confusion on the phrase ’35mm equivalent chip size’ because movie cameras capture the wide part of the image to the width of the a strip of 35mm film while still film cameras use the width of the film to capture the narrow part of the image

      a 7d has a similar chip size to a 35mm motion picture camera (like an arria or panavision) a 5d has a similar chip size to a 35mm film stills camera (like a nikon F3 etc)

      to know how wide or tele your lense will be on your camera you need to know the chip size

      an 80mm is quite a tele on a 7d, a medium tele on a 5 and a ‘normal’ on a 645 stills camera

  8. Very interesting. A friend is a cameraman on Hawaii Five 0. He’s been doing a lot of work with the 5D on that show. And loves it. I’m going to visit him in Oahu to watch them film. Marc~

  9. has someone ever made a chart as to what primes are really on a cropped censor.


    5d 50mm 7d ??mm
    5d 35mm 7d ??mm

    i know someone on set once told me a number to add. if this is already somewere hit me with a link..

  10. this is pretty cool. is it like this for any kind of lens or is it just a certain series of lenses because I heard that it was only like that with the L series lenses.

  11. This is great video. I wonder if the same could be carried out to show how the depth of field changes on cropped and uncropped sensors too? If using say an 80mm lens on the 5D at f/4, the iris diameter would be 20mm. However, if using a lens on a 1.6 crop body, to get the same field of view, one would have to use a 50mm lens. At f/4, a 50mm lens would only have an aperture diameter of 12.5mm meaning deeper depth of field, would it not? Therefore, to get the SAME aperture diameter on a cropped body, the f number would need to be 50mm / 20mm = f/2.5. It’s also interesting to note that, say you were using a 50mm f1.4 lens on the 5D, you would need an (approx.) 30mm lens with an f number of 0.9 on the cropped body to get the same depth of field (f/1.4 / 1.6 = 0.9).

    Therefore, I would presume that if you were to stand in the same position using the same lens on both cameras, the Depth of Field would be the same. However, if you were to move back with the cropped camera body, to get the same equivalent field of view, the depth of field would obviously increase as you would be further away from the subject.

    I’d love to see a video showing this, but I only have a 550D / T2i…

  12. Nice video 🙂

    But for film cinematographers, the 7D and how a 20mm lens looks on it (or any lens) is closer to what they are used to seeing. Not what you get on a 5d.


  13. Little resume. This is what happens on a 7D.

    11mm lens -> 17,6mm
    16mm lens -> 25,6mm
    28mm lens -> 44,8mm
    30mm lens -> 48mm
    35mm lens -> 56mm
    50mm lens -> 80mm
    80mm lens -> 128mm

    Just take the actual lens size times 1.6 (crop factor).

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