First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?

Started May 13, 2012 | Discussions
ladyninja
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First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
May 13, 2012

I have a Canon 7D and have no desire to sell it. The crop factor is extremely useful to me when shooting horses and I actually use the 8FPS. However, I have wanted a full frame for a long time. I need something with higher IQ that works better indoors and has less of an issue with noise. This is where a full frame comes in.

I'd been all set to nab the 5D2 as soon as the 5D3 came out and it dropped in price. But then I saw that the 5D3 had the AF system I needed to shoot moving targets. I'm mostly a hobby photographer and rarely make money off of the pictures I take (it has happened, but this isn't my main source of income). I take a lot of pictures of things that require a fast and accurate focus or else the shot will be lost. Financially I can get a used 5D2 no problem. It would slightly inconvenience me to get a 5D3, but it isn't wildly out of my price range.

Which one is more worth the cost? The soonest I'd be adding it to my collection is July. Should I pay the extra to get the focus system that I need or save the money and make due with missing a lot of shots?

Peter 13
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

Accurate AF with the 5D2 is not a problem with the center AF point, non tracking. Tracking is OK if you have a large object in the center but probably not for what you need it.

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ladyninja
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Peter 13, May 13, 2012

Yeah, I've given the 5D2 a test run before and I can take great still shots of people posing but when it comes to moving subjects it takes a lot more effort, and a lot more failed photos before I get one that I actually like.

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Skip M
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I'd sayr 5D3?
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

To me (repeat: to me ) the 5D3 is the best "no excuses" camera out there. It's full frame with a (apparently) stellar AF system, good, if not class leading resolution, improved metering over the 5D2, improved shutter lag and blackout, killer ISO range, etc. No, "oh, crum, I missed focus" or "oh,cr*p, the shutter lag made me miss that shot," or any other excuse for not getting what you were supposed to do.
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Manny82
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

Hi there, i too am in the same position, well not exactly, but i currently shoot a 30D and looking to move full frame. Like you, i also considered the 5D2 but very soon ruled it out due to poor AF. You're not going to like this, but considering what else is on the market, the only other option i see is getting a Nikon D700 - which is a great camera with great AF, and of course is full-frame. Only 12MP though.

This might be an issue for you if you have invested heavily in Canon glass.

Unfortunately i think the 5D3 is too expensive and this is what has always bugged me with Canon - they seem to over price the camera when you consider the value Nikon give you.

I wish the 5D3 was cheaper, around the same price as a D800, then i would still go for the 5D3. In my honest opinion, i think the 5D3 is the best all round camera on the market and Canon have finally got their fingers out of their ar$se$ and given people a proper AF system - probably market-leading.

If you can budget for a 5D3 then for me it is a no-brainer - especially considering what you will be shooting: moving targets.

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Peter 13
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Manny82, May 13, 2012

Manny82 wrote:

Like you, i also considered the 5D2 but very soon ruled it out due to poor AF.

Who told you that?

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Manny82
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Peter 13, May 13, 2012

Peter 13 wrote:

Manny82 wrote:

Like you, i also considered the 5D2 but very soon ruled it out due to poor AF.

Who told you that?

I meant from a tracking point of view.

The system in the 5D2 is very out-dated. We don't need a debate about that. It is fact.

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ladyninja
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Manny82, May 13, 2012

Nikon bodies are usually more affordable but their lenses get pricy when you go up to high end. I have noticed that Nikon always provides a very competitive price vs quality ratio compared to Canon, but ultimately it won't make enough of a difference to matter. I'm not selling my 7D for the world, and if I were to make a switch to Nikon I'd have to give up all my lenses which just makes no sense.

Is $3,500 overpriced? Yes. But is it worthy switching to Nikon? No.

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Peter 13
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Manny82, May 13, 2012

Manny82 wrote:

Peter 13 wrote:

Manny82 wrote:

Like you, i also considered the 5D2 but very soon ruled it out due to poor AF.

Who told you that?

I meant from a tracking point of view.

The system in the 5D2 is very out-dated. We don't need a debate about that. It is fact.

This is very different from saying that the AF is poor.

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Manny82
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

ladyninja wrote:

Nikon bodies are usually more affordable but their lenses get pricy when you go up to high end. I have noticed that Nikon always provides a very competitive price vs quality ratio compared to Canon, but ultimately it won't make enough of a difference to matter. I'm not selling my 7D for the world, and if I were to make a switch to Nikon I'd have to give up all my lenses which just makes no sense.

Is $3,500 overpriced? Yes. But is it worthy switching to Nikon? No

Yes this is why i said if you have invested heavily in Canon gear then it would not make economical sense to switch to a different system.

Whilst we're on the subject of lenses though, Canon aren't all ahead either. Yes i have a 70-200 f/4 L IS, it is a fantastic lens and Nikon don't have anything to rival it other than their great f/2.8.

But on the other hand, Nikon are also updating a lot of their more affordable glass too - such as the 50mm f/1.4, 50mm f/1.8, and 85mm too. Canon still have not done this. This arguably affects many more people than those who buy L glass.

I'm not looking to start a debate on all this, but this is just something i have come to realise when i started considering getting a Nikon D700.

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Manny82
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Peter 13, May 13, 2012

Peter 13 wrote:

Manny82 wrote:

Peter 13 wrote:

Manny82 wrote:

Like you, i also considered the 5D2 but very soon ruled it out due to poor AF.

Who told you that?

I meant from a tracking point of view.

The system in the 5D2 is very out-dated. We don't need a debate about that. It is fact.

This is very different from saying that the AF is poor.

Well it still is when you consider the system as a whole. You're being very pedantic.

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DFPanno
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Don't shoot with a 5D3 unless you can afford a 5D3.
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

The 5D3 is easily an intrinsically better camera than a 5D2.

That is not to suggest that the OUTPUT is going to be better; that's up to you.

I think the 5D3 is worth it. YMMV.

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Rick Knepper
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I vote for the 5D3.
In reply to ladyninja, May 13, 2012

In this case, IMO, the additional $1300-1400 truly does buy a significant and equal value for money in advancement of features. For someone who doesn't own a FF 5 series camera, the 5d3 is a no brainer. The only way the 5D2 lbecomes a decent deal is to find a mint used 5D2.

ladyninja wrote:

I have a Canon 7D and have no desire to sell it. The crop factor is extremely useful to me when shooting horses and I actually use the 8FPS. However, I have wanted a full frame for a long time. I need something with higher IQ that works better indoors and has less of an issue with noise. This is where a full frame comes in.

I'd been all set to nab the 5D2 as soon as the 5D3 came out and it dropped in price. But then I saw that the 5D3 had the AF system I needed to shoot moving targets. I'm mostly a hobby photographer and rarely make money off of the pictures I take (it has happened, but this isn't my main source of income). I take a lot of pictures of things that require a fast and accurate focus or else the shot will be lost. Financially I can get a used 5D2 no problem. It would slightly inconvenience me to get a 5D3, but it isn't wildly out of my price range.

Which one is more worth the cost? The soonest I'd be adding it to my collection is July. Should I pay the extra to get the focus system that I need or save the money and make due with missing a lot of shots?

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twan
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to Manny82, May 13, 2012

I'm also considering an upgrade of my 30D and I've come up with this:

The AF of the 30D was always enough for me. I don't shot in AI-servo or BIF's. So the AF system of the 5DmkII should be enough for me too.

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shawn in ak
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Re: First Full Frame: 5D2 or 5D3?
In reply to twan, May 13, 2012

If you need awesome AF and can afford the 5D3, I'd go for that. I have the 5D2, and use it mostly (hobbyist with some pro aspirations) for nature & landscape and it's stellar. To me, that extra savings can be used to build a lens collection.

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ladyninja
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Re: I vote for the 5D3.
In reply to Rick Knepper, May 14, 2012

Rick Knepper wrote:

In this case, IMO, the additional $1300-1400 truly does buy a significant and equal value for money in advancement of features. For someone who doesn't own a FF 5 series camera, the 5d3 is a no brainer. The only way the 5D2 lbecomes a decent deal is to find a mint used 5D2.

I think I agree here. I looked into the idea of getting a used 5D2 for $1700 and then selling it come winter to put it towards the 5D3 (at a $200 loss probably) to break up the costs but it just didn't make sense. The tough part is that even though I can afford it, I never take any multi-thousand dollar purchase lightly. There is a list of lenses I want to buy, after all, that cost money. I have to carefully decide which purchase is more important. In this case lenses won't help me very much because I have the range I need.

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flyfish1
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Re: I vote for the 5D3.
In reply to ladyninja, May 14, 2012

The 5DII is an outstanding camera period! Anyone who tells you differently is just being foolish. Be smart about your decision, and think glass with the $1500.00 you will be saving in the markII. Plus the fact a markII and your 7D is one heck of a combo.

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ladyninja
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Re: I vote for the 5D3.
In reply to flyfish1, May 14, 2012

flyfish1 wrote:

The 5DII is an outstanding camera period! Anyone who tells you differently is just being foolish. Be smart about your decision, and think glass with the $1500.00 you will be saving in the markII. Plus the fact a markII and your 7D is one heck of a combo.

Well, even with the 5D2 I wouldn't be able to tend to my lens list just yet. I want to replace my 17-40mm with a 16-35mm and 24-70mm combo which is NOT cheap. If I got the 5D2 my saved money would just get me a macro lens and maybe one of the prime lenses I've been eyeballing. I have a 17-40mm, 50mm f/1.4, and 70-200mm f/4L right now. That range works fine for me at the moment.

I agree with you 100% though. Absolutely outstanding camera.

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yabokkie
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simply 5D2
In reply to ladyninja, May 14, 2012

for two reasons,

  1. though 5D3's price will be halved someday, 5D2 has better cost performance now.

  2. especially if you still use 7D for better AF and frame rate.

using the same money, you can either buy a 5D3 now, or a 5D2 and then a 5D3 next year.

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tallshorty
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Same as you: 7D --> 5D3
In reply to ladyninja, May 14, 2012

I say the 5D3. You won't be used to the old focusing system in the 5D2 after using the AF system in the 7D. As well as the build and button layout is more similar to the 7D. The new AF is really fantastic.

Luckily, for me, I got a great deal on my 5D3 so it was a no brainer ($2800 CDN) decision. I would struggle over the decision as well if I had to pay full retail price.

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