Feedback: 5DMKIII or 6D? (longish)

Started May 10, 2013 | Discussions thread
Timbukto
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Re: Feedback: 5DMKIII or 6D? (longish)
In reply to cpkuntz, May 11, 2013

cpkuntz wrote:

Mirror slap in 6D and 5D Mark III are the same as 5D Mark II unless you use quiet shutter.  The quiet shutter is roughly similar to the NEX-7.

I've shot with the NEX-7 and I honestly thing its lag is no different than the 5D Mark III. Not sure about the 5D Mark II.

The dynamic range of the Canons is definitely behind the Exmor sensor if you want a lot of latitude to work with in post.  However, out of camera results are identical, and the noise is roughly equivalent between full frame Exmor sensors in the Nikons an in the Canon sensors - again, out of camera.  If you start pushing shadows on the Canons you'll see more noise, although in the 6D and 5D Mark III the noise pattern isn't really band-like as in the 5D Mark II, but more random grain.

The noise in the 6D is slightly less pronounced than in the 5D Mark III, but I believe this is due mostly to a slightly more aggressive noise reduction, as the detail is ever so slightly softer.  So that's basically a wash.  In raw the 6D is slightly cleaner, but it's not really noticeable and is likely due to the very slightly larger pixels.  Both are better than the 5D Mark II.

If you want the best image quality you should consider the Nikon D800E.  It uses an Exmor sensor at 36 mp and 14 stops of DR.  Very impressive results.  However to get the most out of that you really need to have the best lenses and very good technique.  The 5D Mark III is a bit more versatile but you can't push the files as much in post.

Another good option is the Nikon D600.  It's like the D800's little brother and has better absolute image quality than any of the Canons.  If I were starting out without any Canon lenses this would be my choice.

However, Canon makes some really nice lenses that I enjoy quite a lot.  This is what keeps me in the Canon camp.  The 50mm 1.2 and 85 mm 1.2, for example, are excellent lenses not available in the Nikon lineup.

If you want the best autofocus, go with the 5D mark III.  If you shoot a lot of low light, however, the 6D can autofocus at -3 EV.  If a large number of points across the field is less important, I'd certainly go with the 6D.  Other than autofocus and build quality these two cameras are largely the same.  I like the large size of the 5D Mark III, but you might not.  The 6D is smaller.

We have a wealth of good choices.  They all have advantages, and very few weaknesses.  It's a good time to be in the market for a full frame camera.

The 6D has a quieter shutter even without silent mode...in fact by default its a very quiet shutter and mirror flop actuation.  This is *easily* noticeable against the 5DMKII.  Even the 5DMKIII is probably quieter than the 5DMK2 despite firing off at 6FPS.

Just tried the AF on my 85mm 1.8 again on my second 6D and after MFA of -6 and calibrated in low-light indoor conditions, I stepped out today and fired at close range, medium, and near infinity, and again *all* shots are spot on in focus.  I would say the 6D gets you a major improvement in AF accuracy over the 5DMKII, the 5DMKIII gets you AF accuracy, good FPS, *and* top notch tracking and AF point coverage.  6D is still sparse AF and small coverage, and FPS still on the slower side.

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