Articles, Blog

Canon EOS R Cropped 4K: Can it be a good thing?


– So it’s no surprise that the Canon EOS R films beautiful 4K footage. The only issue is, as you probably know, that it films that footage at a crop, which basically means instead of using all of the camera’s big
giant full-frame sensor, it uses a smaller portion in the middle, and that actually ends up resulting in like a 1.7 times crop factor. And we could spend pretty much all day discussing whether that’s
a good thing or a bad thing or if Canon is crippling
their cameras for some reason. And in fact, for about the past year since the EOS R has come out, that’s what people online have been doing. But that’s not what
I’m here to talk about. So whether the 4K crop is good or bad isn’t really the issue here. The fact is, it is a feature in the camera and it’s not changing,
and any amount of arguing or discussion or whatever doesn’t seem like it’s gonna change that. So if we have this feature or
this setting in our camera, is there a way to use it to our benefit? I’ve personally found the 4K crop to be a really useful feature, keeping in mind that I
mostly film my videos using prime lenses, and
I pretty much record and distribute or deliver
everything at 1080. And where the crop factor becomes helpful is the fact that it is a crop factor. If you’re taking a 1080
image and you’re trying to crop in on it and zoom in on it, you’re just losing resolution. Sometimes, if you’re just
doing it a little bit, it doesn’t really make a difference. But if you’re really trying to zoom in on one specific part of the image, it can get pretty pixel-y and
pretty ugly pretty quickly. And that is one of the huge
benefits of filming at 4K but delivering at 1080, because you have four
times the resolution. And even if you scale down 4K
footage into a 1080 timeline, it looks really good because you’ve packed all that resolution into a smaller area. But on the other hand,
if you have 4K footage on a 1080 timeline and
you want to zoom in on it, you can basically go four times in without losing any resolution. So something is filmed in
4K and you want to crop in, it’s gonna look just as clear. And that’s true with any 4K footage. But where the crop factor comes in handy is when you actually do
want to zoom in more. What I have found is
that the lens I use most is my Sigma 24 millimeter 1.4. But sometimes when I’m out filming, it just doesn’t go quite far enough. And then I know if I just turn on 4K, it’s going to crop in. So now instead of 24, I
have something that’s like, I don’t know, let me see
what, what’s 24 times 1.7? – [Siri] The answer is 40.8. – So with the 4K turned
on, my 24 millimeter lens suddenly becomes like
a 40 millimeter lens. And then when I’m editing at 1080, if I want to zoom in
further on that 4K footage, which is basically four
times the resolution of 1080, what is that, that’s 40,
what’s 40 times four? Is it 160?
– [Siri] That would be 160. – Now my 24 millimeter
lens is almost giving me the results of 160 millimeters. And you can just sort of
extrapolate that for other lenses. So if you’re using a
lens that goes 24 to 105 and you’re at 105, suddenly, it’s like you’re much much closer. So for example, take this shot here. It’s at 105 millimeters
using the full frame sensor at regular full definition 1080. As soon as I switch into
4K, you can see that 1.7 millimeter crop and the effect that it has even though the shot is still
framed at 105 millimeters. So that gives you a bit
of a reference point for what that 1.7 times crop
looks like in real life. But imagine there was
some reason that I really wanted to get closer to that
branch of the palm tree. I start out with my regular
1080 full frame sensor and then I turn on 4K, and immediately, you see that 1.7 times crop factor. But then, if I want to get
closer while I’m editing, I can crop in basically four times without losing any resolution. And now, I can get really
close to that branch. So as you can imagine,
that’d be really helpful in a wide variety of situations beyond just filming palm trees
in their natural habitat. Of course, this isn’t
exactly the same thing as having a lens that actually
zooms to those focal lengths. But when you’re in a
pinch, it really helps. Another way that I’ve been
using the 1.7 times crop factor to my advantage is with overhead shots. I have my overhead rig here,
which I put on this table and do a lot of overhead shots. I use the EOS R most of the
time for those overhead shots and I usually use a pretty
wide lens with those shots so that you can see
whatever I’m working on. You can see my hands, it’s
clear what I’m talking about. But sometimes, I just need to get a little closer to the subject. So if I have the EOS R up
here on the overhead rig filming at 4K, not only is it clear, but I know that if something happens and there’s a small detail
of whatever I’m working on, whatever I’m doing over
here, I can crop in on that and it’s gonna help me to communicate my point more effectively. So for me personally, as
someone who does most of my work at 1080, there have been
very few, if any, times where I’ve found myself
wishing like oh man, I wish the EOS R had full frame 4K. And there have been a lot of times just out in real world situations where I’ve been really happy
to have that 1.7 times crop because it’s going to
help me get something that I’d have no way of getting otherwise. Of course, it would be
awesome to have the option to use the full frame sensor at 4K and then crop in if you want to. That’s kind of the best of both worlds. But for now, this is what we got. I’m not trying to be a Canon apologist. I’m just trying to say
if this is what we have and there’s cool ways that we can use it that actually are helpful and beneficial, we might as well do that. All in all, the EOS R is a
really fun camera to use, and the more I use it, the more I like it. I kinda find these little useful tricks that I wasn’t super aware
of when I first got it. I did put together a whole
video of what I think are five underrated features of the EOS R. So I really recommend
that you check that out so you can get a little bit more out of this super awesome camera. (chill music)

20 Comments

  1. The Enthusiasm Project Author

    Time Markers:
    0:00 – EOS R 4K Overview
    0:54 – How Is Cropped 4K a Benefit?
    1:39 – Why Film in 4K for 1080 Uploads?
    2:40 – Use 4K to Extend Your Lens Reach
    3:16 – 4K Crop Comparisons
    4:23 – Other Ways 4K Crop is Helpful
    5:42 – The EOS R is Just a Fun Camera

    Reply
  2. Theos Welt Author

    It is not also good as a kind of tele converter (do you say so in english?). It is also good for fake camera movements in post. If you usally use 1080 and then mix 4k to that you can "move" that footage in post. So if you are a one man show as I am, I have more dynamic before the camera.

    Reply
  3. Mark Shirley Author

    It's only the 120fps at 720p that is my issue with the R. I've heard that you can use single point non continuous AF which is s bit of a help. I'm wondering if it's actually good enough to use on some projects. I was going to do a food shoot like Daniel Shiffer has just done – I just don't know if the R will be able to produce the goods.

    Reply
  4. AsianWithHat Author

    The problem with the 1.7x crop is that you also have to compensate the crop factor with the aperture. And in order to recover the crop we have to use Super 35 lenses to give the full frame look

    Reply
  5. dimitrimoonlight Author

    Nonsense, you're talking about based on 1080P time lines. If you wanna use UHD time line… You know everybody talks about EOS R 4k.

    Reply
  6. Rainer Menes Author

    I am photographing and film wildlife and here the crop in 4K is a hit. It makes my 100-400 with 1.4 x converter = 560mm into a 952mm 4K Video camera. If I am using only 1080p it goes even more into the subject. Like always what makes one happy is a pain for others.

    Reply
  7. Everyday Family Author

    Another great video breaking things down in a simple and easy to understand way. Grateful for this approach to making "tutorial" videos.

    Reply
  8. Joe Charles Author

    4K is double the resolution to 1080p btw. But yes I absolutely agree with all your other points. I often find this is an advantage of my own eos r in certain situations

    Reply
  9. Lilio Camere Author

    To everyone saying 4K is only double the resolution of 1080p, it’s four times the resolution. It’s double the height and double the width.

    1920 x 1080 = 2,073,600 pixels
    3840 x 2160 = 8,294,400 pixels

    8,294,400 ÷ 2,073,600 = 4

    Reply
  10. Snowwalker Author

    Thank you. I've always thought my M50's 4K's crop could help me in certain situations. As you mentioned I wish it was offered as an option and the M50 had dpaf in 4K like the R

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *