5D3 vs D800E: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?

Started Jul 19, 2013 | Discussions thread
qianp2k Forum Pro • Posts: 10,350
Re: 5D3 vs D800E: Diminishing Returns or Reversal of Returns?

SubPrime wrote:

qianp2k wrote:

Zeiss T 35mm f/2 on 5DIII vs D800 - tied at 17 mpix

So either the 35 f/2 is a lemon,

No, still very good but not as sharp as Sigma 35/1.4

or the DXO figures mean something else.

DXO figures only capped to MTF 30 or even 50.

Sigma 35/1.4 on 5DIII vs D800 - 19 vs 23 mpix

According to what I see, it's 17.5 vs 23

17 mpix is with 5DII but 19 mpix is with 5DIII.

Bear in mind that DXOMark above tests probably cap to MTF 30 or even 50 resolution. D800's extra 14mp certainly will be still visible some degree below the cap when view at pixel level. You really need best lenses to fully leverage 36mp.

True, however you will almost always get more detail from the D800 unless the lens is a lemon.

More MP camera always is higher in MTF resolution but the point is at what cap level that matters to human eyes that virtually unable to see the part (that is very low contrast and could buried in noises/grains) beyond the curve of MTF 20 especially 15 or below. So if we compare their respective 24-70mm /f2.8 zoom, 5DIII with 24-70L II beats D800 with 24-70G which means it's perceptually sharper acoording to DXO test that capped to MTF 30 or 50 but you might still able to see tiny higher resolution from latter combo that reflects in the part below MTF 30. You'd have to pixel peeping to see the tiny difference, but at normal output such as at Rick's 1800x1200, 5D3 combo will be sharper.

BTW. This brings me to your link to Garland. Again, I am sure he's a nice guy and his post sounds reasonable, except for the fact that his arguments are a little incoherent.

1. He claims there is no significant difference in IQ between the D800 and the 5DIII, yet not one of the Nikon lenses he shoots with appear on the list of lenses recommended by Nikon for shooting with the D800.

He also mentioned he didn't print more than 20x30" that is also my case. Most my photos stay in hard disks and view on computer monitor. So extra MP is not a big deal to me at moment until 4K/8K monitors become affordable.

2. Most of the lenses he mentions (designated AIS) are not even auto focusing and predate digital. This is not something Canon DSLR users are familiar with, given that the Canon mount is no longer compatible with older lenses.

3. Meanwhile, on the 5D3, he is shooting with the EF 17-40/4L and the EF 100/2, both of which are excellent.

4. Last but not least, he justifies his choice because the AF on the 5DIII is more versatile and precise - which is a little confusing given that he uses no auto focusing lenses.

Of course, he is right about the AF on the 5D3 being excellent, though I must say that the firmware upgrade has made a world of difference. I still think the 5DIII AF is more precise, but in terms of speed and response, I think it's even.

I read many similar AF reports between Canon and Nikon cameras. Many of them said similarly that D800 or D4 is not really slower in AF but 5D3 or 1DX leads a bit in AF consistency, and getting more critical sharp photos on the spots photog really intended such as on eyes rather average sharp on entire face, that makes difference and could be very important to some photogs.

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