I'd venture to suggest that it is a marginal difference at best — largely influenced by how one feels about 'street' photography. You and I both are aware that we will never agree on that topic and so it is best just left as a given.
Probably best. But instead of a marginal difference, I'd call it the difference between night and day.
I will make one observation about it to say: I do a lot of work with my camera(s) set up in the street — it comes with the territory of working in the built environment for architects and developers. These days that happens mostly with a DSLR and people passing by do sometimes exercise caution or eye-ball me with mild trepidation. When I do exactly the same thing with a 4x5 camera they express interest, sometimes engage quizzingly or respectfully pass by giving a wide berth.
All down to perceptions I guess.
You're right, Walter. In the sixties I used to do some shooting from the street with a 4 x 5, and with that kind of gear I think passers by recognize that you're not out there for pictures of people. An SLR is a horse of a different color, but if it's on a tripod I think passers by pretty much assume the same thing they assume about a 4 x 5. But if you're doing street photography it doesn't pay to be walking around with a D3 mounted with a 70-200 f/2.8. That rig isn't non-threatening.