Do You Crop 4x3 Images to 3x2?

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by aukirk, Oct 11, 2013.

  1. aukirk

    aukirk Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 9, 2012
    When I first converted to the micro 4/3 system, I had trouble getting used to the 4x3 crop. While I know you can choose a different crop in the camera, I prefer to work in RAW anyway and it also never made any sense to throw away pixels the camera came with.

    For the past year, I have been going back and forth between post-process cropping images in the original aspect ration of 4x3 or cropping to 2x3.

    Although I rarely actually print 4x6 images, whenever I crop to 4x3 I find my self leaving enough room at the top and bottom in case it does end up printed. While I acknowledge that even cropping to 2x3, you need to leave room on left and right if you plant to print 5x7 or 8x10, it seems easier to leave room on the left and right.

    When viewing on-line, usually I find that the larger height of the 4x3 crop looks better, since usually it is the width that restricts the size of the image. However, it just feels like I am looking at an old "tube" tv instead of a nice widescreen HD tv.

    Am I the only one who continually goes back and forth with this internal debate?
  2. Mattr

    Mattr Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 5, 2013
    Melbourne, Australia
    Matt Robinson
    I tried shooting 3x2 but then realised the EP-3 just puts crop data on the RAW so didn't see the point anymore. I just crop the way I want it in post.

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Mu-43 mobile app
  3. MajorMagee

    MajorMagee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 24, 2011
    Dayton, OH
    I like the 4:3 format and feel uncomfortable with wide screen as it seems less natural relative to how my eyes see things.

    I've actually started to appreciate a 1:1 Square Crop more and more as it brings everything right down to just the area around the subject.

  4. darosk

    darosk Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 17, 2013
    Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
    I, too, have been square-cropping quite frequently in recent times. I think it's because I've been using Instagram a fair bit over the last year or so.

    Initially the 4x3 did sort of bother me, coming from 3x2 of DSLRs. If it's for a client and I know if and/or how they're going to print, then I'll compose and crop with that in mind, but in my personal shooting now I just crop however I happen to feel with a particular image.
  5. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    I used to struggle getting accustomed to the 4:3 format. Now I like it so much I tend to crop my DSLR 3:2 images into 4:3! :wink:
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Promit

    Promit Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 6, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    Promit Roy
    I have a 4:3 camera and a 3:2 camera. I typically crop to one of: 16x9, 4x3, 10x8, 19x13. The last of those is the only one that really feels like 3:2, but it's also my "proud of this image" print size. So I wind up adjusting images and framing to hit that size.
  7. In landscape orientation I am more likely to favour 3:2 or even 16:9 or 2:1. In portrait orientation I favour the 4:3 ratio. I really wish that the multi-aspect m4/3 sensor hadn't died with the GH1 and GH2 cameras.
  8. deejayvee

    deejayvee Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 3, 2013
    Sydney, Australia
    For me, it depends on the photo. But like luckypenguin, I find landscapes are more likely to be cropped to 3:2.
  9. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I always shoot raw and crop in PP to suit the subject. If I have any preference to a standard format, then it's square. I've never liked the 3:2 ratio - it seems very unnatural to my eye.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    For street photography, I think the 4:3 ratio is ideal.
  11. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    My least favourite thing about m43 is the 4 to 3 crop.

  12. Ian.

    Ian. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2013
    The ratio of any sensor is an artificial limitation with no importance to photography. There is no 'correct' ratio! Each photograph will have its own ideal ratio depending on the composition. Even when printed out it should be cropped to suit the composition. As some have said, some pictures even suit a square 1:1 ratio.

    Don't let a sensor chip stand in the way of freedom of creativity.
    • Like Like x 5
  13. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    When I started with 4/3, I was used to 3:2 and preferred that. I was used to 4:3 meaning "point and shoot camera" and 3:2 meaning "DSLR". Over the years, I've come to prefer 4:3, and it translates well to 8x10" which is my most often used print size.
    • Like Like x 2
  14. Henk

    Henk Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 18, 2010
    the Netherlands
  15. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    I also shoot raw and crop in post to fit the composition. Typically to 3x2, but lots of 16x9 or wider for landscapes, and plenty of 4x3 and 1x1 when the composition suits.
  16. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2013
  17. aukirk

    aukirk Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 9, 2012
    I definitely agree that different images are better suited for different crops, and that the sensor size is not a limitation on that. However, I guess I was trying to figure out why I am more drawn to the 3x2 dimensions... but maybe it is because that is the prior standard.

    Since I find myself usually cropping to 3x2, I wish I could figure out a way to get the E-M5 to show that in the viewfinder. I shoot raw and tried switching it to capture 3x2, which at first worked great since the viewfinder showed the 3x2 area, and viewing the images in the camera showed the full 4x3 with a white box where the 3x2 crop was (confirming that I am not losing pixels).

    I assumed that once the RAW files were imported into Aperture, I would have the ability to re-crop and re-claim some of those top and bottom pixels if I wanted. However, the images that appear on import in Aperture are the cropped 3x2 version and I can't seem to find an easy way to recrop and use those top and bottom pixels.

    I would even be happy if there was an option to draw a line at top and bottom designating the 3x2 crop but still save the files as 4x3... it would be helpful to have some guidance beyond intuition to help decide how much room needs to be left at the top and bottom if I am going to crop in post.
  18. carpandean

    carpandean Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 29, 2010
    Western NY
    I'm relatively new to post processing, so I'm asking this without really knowing the answer, but could you try adding Olympus Viewer into your workflow to get not only the full uncropped image (if it does, I'm not sure), but also more information by saving as a TIF file? It seems that a lot here do this before processing in Lightroom. It adds a step, of course, so it may or may not be worth it.
  19. kponds

    kponds Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 18, 2013
    I usually (unless the scene dictates otherwise) shoot with the plan to crop to 4x5.

    -8x10, 16x20, and 11x14 (11x14 is only a hair different) is convenient for printing and hanging purposes.

    -4x5 is not that different from 4/3 native ... It's fairly easy to compose with 4x5 in mind, even in raw mode.

    -I've always felt like 2x3/35mm was just a weird format.
  20. kahren

    kahren Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 21, 2010
    on m43 camera i just set it to 3:2 in camera, on my phone camera when i shoot in landscape i use 16:9 and when shooting in portrait i shoot in 4:3, mainly because it doesn't have a 3:2 mode. I much prefer to shoot 4:3 in vertical orientation, in landscape it just looks wrong to me. The square 1:1 can be nice sometimes as well.