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APS-C

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Advanced Photo System type-C should not be confused with the Advanced Photographic System (APS) camera/film system, since the former is digital and the latter is analogue. APS-C is a type of image sensor found in certain digital single lens reflex (DSLR) cameras. These sensors are smaller than the ones used for the conventional 36 mm x 24 mm (35 mm) sensor SLR cameras (also called full frame DSLR cameras). Being smaller causes a 1.x multiplier for the effect of the focal distance of the lenses, in comparison with the effect of those lenses on conventional 35 mm film SLR cameras or full frame digital SLR cameras. Several manufacturers produce cameras with an APS-C sensor and some even make lenses especially for them. These lenses are found in the Canon EF-S, Nikon DX, Pentax DA and Sigma DC ranges, to name the most popular ones. The most common multiplier ratios are 1.6 (Canon), 1.5 (Nikon, Fuji, Sony, etc.), 1.3 (Canon). (1.3 crop sensors are also sometimes called APS-H.) Most manufacturers not only produce cameras with these cropped sensors, but also offer DSLR cameras with full frame sensors.

Related Terms

An imaging sensor with the same size as film used for the respective format of camera. See also Crop factor and APS-C.
Describes how much an imaging sensor has been cropped in relation to its full-frame equivalent. It always describes how many times larger the full-frame is in relation to the cropped sensor. Take an APS-C sensor with a crop factor of 1.6, for instance. This indicates the sensor is 60% of the size of a frame of 35mm film. The crop factor is used to calculate how much of the equivalent of the full-frame field of view the cropped sensor will have with a lens. In order to calculate this, one multiplies the focal length of the lens by the crop factor. A 1.6 crop-factor, for instance, will give a 100mm lens the same field of view as a 160mm lens on a full-frame camera.