While out photographing a cityscape of Hong Kong, I had an idea to try some unique cropping. While standing in front of the stunning skyline, I brought up the image size menu on the Fujifilm GFX50R, and came across an unusual crop dimension of 65:24. I had never seen this crop before, but it turns out it has significant historic importance in the photography world.
Fujifilm has a long history in building panoramic cameras such as the Fujifilm G617 which was launched in 1983, and as its name implies, has a 6:17 ratio. Further to that, Fujifilm worked with Hasselblad to produce the gorgeous Fujifilm T-X1 and Hasselblad XPan, both of which use 65mm x 24mm film.
In today’s hyper race for more and more resolution, cropping away some of those hard earned pixels seems counterintuitive and a waste. However, I suggest the exact opposite is the case; with so much resolution, we can now afford to lob off a few megapixels worth of data to give images a unique look, while still having plenty of resolution for printing or online viewing.
My GFX50R comes with a 51MP sensor in a 43.8 mm x 32.9 mm 4:3 format, which is somewhat unique in today’s world, sharing the same ratio with micro four-thirds cameras, albeit with a much smaller 18mm x 13.5 mm sensor. It wasn’t always this way however as every home in North America had a TV in a 4:3 ratio; they’ve all been replaced with 16:9 TVs which we still have today.
Image formats have gone through transitions in the past and we see a lot of 1:1 format images these days due to Instagram and more viewers using phones to consume images. The most common however is probably still 3:2, which is the ratio for full-frame cameras, which use a 36 mm x 24 mm sensor, and APSC cameras, which use a 24 mm ×16 mm sensor. The 3:2 ratio goes all the way back to 1913 when Oskar Barnack chose this film ratio for the popular Leica 1.
With today’s monster high resolution cameras, we have the luxury of excess pixels that are more than willing to be sacrificed for the greater good. When the GFX50R is put into the 65:24 crop mode, the resolution drops down from 51MP to 25MP, which is just slightly lower than what you get in the excellent Fujifilm X-T4 with its 26MP, and slightly higher than what you get with the Sony A7III and Leica M10 with their 24MP.
Essentially, there is still plenty of resolution remaining at 65:24. Further to that, because of the crop, you get the full width of the sensor with its 8256 pixels, so even when printing large, you can easily print up to 42″ or 104cm wide while maintaining 200 PPI resolution, a bit lower than “Retina” resolution, but more than sufficient for a print.
The intent of this post was to make you aware of the different crop options that you have available to you, and to encourage you to try out some funky crops to make your images more unique and interesting. With today’s high megapixel cameras, you don’t have to worry about the loss of resolution, which I think opens up a whole slew of interesting crop options.
If you want to learn more about the different crop options or image aspect ratios, Wikipedia has some excellent content around the different image aspect ratios and their history. For more information about the beautiful Fujifilm TX-1, I would suggest reading this article at camera-wiki.org. I hope you’ve enjoyed this short post!