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Full frame vs cropped sensor DSLR focal length comparison

A user recently messaged on my Facebook page asking if they can use a Canon EF full frame lens on a cropped sensor DSLR?  They bought a second camera body and didn't want to spend money on another lens. After explaining to them the concept of change in focal length and depth of field, I thought of making a post on the same topic which will help total beginners too. 
For this post, two lenses were used one by one on two different DSLR cameras. One lens is made for full frame cameras and the other for cropped sensor cameras. Canon T5i and Canon 6D were used to take the test images with both lenses. Let's see how focal length varies when a full frame lens is used on a cropped sensor camera. 

Lens: Tamron 24-70 DI VC USD Full frame EF mount lens

1) Focal length: 24 mm

24 mm Tamron F2.8
2) Focal length: 70 mm

70 mm Tamron F2.8
The position, lens focal length and camera alignment were kept exactly similar between both the photos used for creating above GIF animation. The crop factor which led to a change in focal length is clearly visible. Summarizing, the effective focal length changes. Let's use a compatible cropped sensor lens on full frame DSLR now.  Third party manufacturers such as Tokina allow their cropped sensor lens to mount on full frame cameras, but not very manufacturer allows this. 

Lens: Tokina 11-16 F2.8 AT-X PRO DX

1) Focal length: 11 mm

11 mm Tokina

In the above photo animation, black halo on 6D is caused by the image circle (from lens) being insufficient to cover the whole sensor. This means the area captured by physical lens was not enough for the sensor size.

2) Focal length: 16 mm

16 mm Tokina
At 16 mm, the area captured by full frame camera is wider as compared to a cropped sensor which is what we saw in the first case too. So yes, mount compatible cropped sensor lens from a few manufacturers can be used on cropped sensor cameras but it will change the effective focal length. 
Hope the animations helped you learn something new today. If you enjoyed this post, share the photography love by sharing this post. 

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