Thursday, October 18, 2012

Canon 5D Mark II vs Mark III

First of all, I have to admit that I do not have neither 5D Mark II or Mark III. But I do own a Canon 5D thou. It was a little surprise for me when I heart about Mark III because I was still thinking about upgrade to Mark II.

Don't get me wrong, I love my 5D and I don't need the video features. That why I am still thinking about upgrade to Mark II (and never did). Should I upgrade to Mark III then? or Should I just save some money by upgrade to Mark II? ... Here what I found out:

You can find full spec and full review of Mark II here and Mark III here.

5D Mark II Mark III
Price  discontinue 1,799 3,459
year Aug 2005 Sept 2008 Mar 2012
Photography Features
LCD Size 2.5" 3.0" 3.2"
Max Resolution 4368x2912 5616x3744 5760x3940
(megapixels) 12.7 21.2 22.3
Processor Digic II Digic 4 Digic 5
ISO (Auto) 100-1600 in 1/3 stops 100-6400 in 1/3 stops 100-25600 in 1/3 stops
(manual) 50, 3200 50, 12800 and 51200 50, 51200 and 102400
Auto focus points 9 9 61
Viewfinder Coverage 96% 98% 100%
Continuous Drive 3 fps (60 JPEG, 17 RAW) 3.9 fps (78 JPEG, 13 RAW) 6 fps
Exposure Compensation ±2 EV (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps) ±2 EV (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps) ±5 EV (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±2 (3 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps) ±2 (3 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps) ±3 (2, 3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
Muli-exposure no no up to 9 exposures
HDR in cameras no no 5 options
Horizon level no no dual axis leveling
Weight 895g 850g 950g
Memory Card 1 CF 1 CF 1 CF and 1 SD
Video Features
1080 n/a yes yes
720 n/a no 60,50
640 n/a 30,25 30,25
Longest clip n/a 12 mins (approx) 30 mins
Microphone/ Headphone Jack n/a mono/no mono/yes
Audio level ctrl n/a yes (pre recording) yes (while recording)
Aperture control in video n/a no yes
Histogram in video n/a no yes
Chromatic Aberration fix n/a no yes
Time code support n/a no yes

Overall, Mark III is an improvement over Mark II in the photography featrues, little bit bigger censor, faster processor, wider range ISO, more auto focus points, two memory cards, etc. Mark III is greatly improve on HDR support, such as, HDR in cameras, AE Bracketing and Multi-exposure, and 6 fps would help to get better HDR pictures. For me, I wish to have 5 or 7 frame AE Bracketing for quite some time.

Beside HDR, I would say, other improved features are nice the have. It's won't convince me to pay almost double to get Mark III.

Obviously the different between Mark II and Mark III is in video features. I don't know much about it but I can see that Mark III is greatly improve over Mark II. If the video features are important to you, then you should consider Mark III.

On the other hand, if you are looking for your first canon full frame camera, spend some time looking at  Mark II, specially at this price. It is a great photography tools and it is must better than 5D. It come with video features that you can explore. If I am not mistake, Mark II is very successful in this area too.

For me, I already have 5D. I am still happy with it and I don't really need video features. So I probably wait and see how Mark IV is going to look like.

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