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5D3 - Simply Awesome
I have shot professionally for around 7 years, have been taking photos for 30 years and have used all number of camera bodies and brands in that time.

I have owned a 5D3 for only a day and already can see that this is the best camera I have ever used. Canon finally got it when they made this little puppy.

I know I will discover a lot more when I use it at two weddings on the weekend.

Let me say that the AF is amazing. Shot after shot focusing exactly where you want it - anywhere you want with 61 AF points to choose from. Very fast even in extremely low light.

The only time I could get the AF to falter was when I turned all the lights off in my room and sat in almost total darkness and then tried to shoot black camera bags Smile . It was still able to focus on some higher contrast areas (like a silver lampshade against a light green wall). The file (shot at 25,600 ISO) was usable.

I love the handling of it.

Canon stuff.
Impressive. I know that you will put it to good use.
Do you use a single point for specific place focus? Like a face at the edge of the frame.
Lumix LX5.
Canon 350 D.+ 18-55 Kit lens + Tamron 70-300 macro. + Canon 50mm f1.8 + Manfrotto tripod, in bag.
Congratulations! I've only been able to play with the 5D3 a couple of times, but the AF impressed me a lot. Canon's done really well with combining the best of the 5D2 and 7D into one camera. • @matthewpiers | | @thewsreviews •
(Apr 1, 2012, 17:54)NT73 Wrote: Do you use a single point for specific place focus? Like a face at the edge of the frame.

Yes - every time I shoot I have selected a focus point.

The 5D3 AF allows you to further define a smaller area within that focus point - something I will be using for the eye of a bride when shooting wide open on fast primes.
Canon stuff.
Thanks for the info. It is what I mainly do. Just wondered if I was doing it wrong. Wink
Lumix LX5.
Canon 350 D.+ 18-55 Kit lens + Tamron 70-300 macro. + Canon 50mm f1.8 + Manfrotto tripod, in bag.
ooo.. so you got your 5D3 already Chris? Fantastic. I'm guessing you didn't order it from Leederville Camera Land then (or if you did then you found a way to jump ahead of me in the queue!).

That's such good news about the AF being such a highlight of this camera. I remember being underwhelmed with the AF when I first bought my 5D2. It was the only thing I wasn't impressed about with that camera. But after a couple of weeks I just got on with things and forgot about it... you just shoot with what you've got. For the next 3 years the only time I'd get annoyed at it is when I use my 1D3 for extended periods and used to really snappy AF, then have to switch back. But the IQ from the 5D2 always made the focus effort worthwhile.

But I have to admit that in the weeks since the 5D3 was announced with it's sexy AF... I've begun noticing *every single* slow-focussed and mis-focussed shot I get from my 5D2. When I was sorting through the photos from Sari and Shannon's wedding for you last week, I was grimicing at how many reception shots I had to reject because of AF problems. Sad

So I *love* the fact they made AF a priority for the 5D3. I was expecting (and would have been happy with) 7D-like AF, but am stoked they based it on the 1DX instead. Combined with the faster burst rate, I now have absolutely no reason to own a 1D.
A lot of people are saying the asking price is expensive for a 5D replacement... but I say it's cheap for what to me is a 1D replacement.

And as far as the comparisons to the D800 go... well, Nikon owners are very lucky with their latest camera and I'm really happy for them. But I'm also happy with the 5D3 upgrade.
I'd be crazy to change systems based on a single camera body, and the D800 being as good as it is doesn't somehow make the 5D3 (or any other camera) bad. I think it's good that both companies have gone down slightly different paths with these cameras. This kind of choice, innovation, and healthy competition is great for all photographers in the long-term.

So.. it seems my 5D3 order is due sometime next week... I'd better get my 1D3 up for sale to help pay for it.
Adrian Broughton
My Website:
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"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
Top stuff and personally delighted..though I'm drawing short of throwing too many paludits at Canon for doing what they should have done by getting AF functional and in line with the competition.
All my stuff is here:
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist:
I agree Zig that the AF was below par - but I think they have really gone ahead of the competition with this. The AF has more menu screens then any other menu in the camera.

It is simply the best AF I have ever used in a camera. Canon have truly built a great camera with the 5D3. For about half the price of a 1DX I think it is a bargain.

Kombi - I bought it somewhere else where they agreed to match the price and gave me the last body they had due to my previous custom at the store.

Looking forward to getting the other body with the new 24-70. Sold my 1D4 - just have to clear the 5D2 now.

Canon stuff.
Well... if I spent less time posting on forums and paid closer attention to my phone.. I would have noticed the missed call I received from the camera shop saying they had a 5D3 body waiting for me! woohoo..

I picked it up just before the store closed and have only had a brief play with it so far (I had to go out tonight).
First impressions are great. I love the AF features and it locks onto subjects in very dim light. I must admit I was expecting the AF to be a little quicker... it's certainly no slouch, but it's no 1D either. It might have the AF abilities of the 1DX, but it seems to all happen at the speed of the 7D (which is perfectly fine, but doesn't blow your socks off). It's brilliant for weddings, portraits, travel, street, etc... And it's perfectly adequate for sports, but I can still see a market for the 1D-X for the dedicated sports photographer. But the 5D3 is easily the best all-purpose camera I've ever used, and it's effortless to use too.

I really like the new menu system, and there are nice little features tucked away in there which I would have loved to have seen on the 5D2 (like the Auto-ISO function is fully programmable so you can specify a range of ISO's and shutter speeds to use, etc).

The sensor does seem to have about a 2-stop improvement in noise-levels. With the 5D2 I would shoot up to 3200iso without having to concern myself with noise. It seems 12800iso gives similar results with this camera. I say similar because the noise does seem to have a slightly different (and nicer) character to it, but there is slightly more of it, so it's not an apples-to-apples comparison. But looking at some 12800iso samples I can see heaps of detail in there (more than my 5D2 at 3200iso), and the noise that is there isn't nasty and can be cleaned up without turning the image to mush. It seems to handle aggressive noise-reduction much better than the 5D2. That's all fantastic news for me.

Chris, that's great you sold your 1D4. I'll have my 1D3 up for sale in the next day or two, and the 5D2 is next.
Do you want me to use the 5D3 this weekend (along with my 5D2)? I just downloaded the Lightroom 4.1 Release Candidate which supports the 5D3 RAW files, but not sure if you are using it. I'm a little hesitent to use a new body for a paid gig straight away because I don't want to be thinking about the camera while I'm shooting, but the 5D3 does feel very intuitive to use so I can't see myself getting stuck in menus or stuffing up settings. And I'll have my 5D2 on my other shoulder (and 7D in the bag) in case.
Adrian Broughton
My Website:
My Blog:
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
By all means use it - I will be using mine.
Canon stuff.
I had a play with the in-camera HDR functions today.
I love the concept of HDR (ie to extend the dynamic range of an image) but I hate the gimmicky "HDR look" that people associate with it. To me, the best HDR images are the ones that you never realise are HDR.

So anyway, the 5D3 generates HDR images by taking three bracketed photos in quick succession and then combining them into a fourth HDR image. The resulting image is always a JPG (even when the other images are shot RAW), and you can specify to keep all four images or just the single resulting HDR JPG.
The process that generates the HDR image has five different styles. Three of the styles "Art Embossed", "Art Bold" and "Art Vivid" give variations of the over-the-top HDR look that was all the rage on forums a couple of years ago. But the remaining two styles; "Natural" and "Art Standard", manage to pretty much do exactly what I want. They extend the dynamic range of an image while maintaining a very natural look.
If you are shooting in tricky lighting (say an indoor scene with a large window where you want to expose for both indoors and outdoors) then having a simple and effective HDR function like this is excellent. I imagine real-estate photographers will be jumping for joy, and it was a nice surprise to me to find it not a gimmick.
Adrian Broughton
My Website:
My Blog:
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
The in-camera HDR thing sounds like it would be a handy tool for high volume gigs (like a wedding), but for regular shooting, I would prefer to just bracket in tight bursts and combine the RAW images myself. I'm with you about hating the over-the-top HDR look - when I do it, I fade the effect back to where its pretty much imperceptible. Not sure that a camera preset would do it the way that I like it, but would be nice if it did.
I was listening to a podcast about the 5D3, specifically with regards to pricing. The 5D2 when first launched was priced around 2500 USD, whereas the 5D3 is being priced at around 3500 USD. I think 1000 is quite a steep increase to swallow, especially these days when people expect prices to either stay the same (Nikon D700 vs D800) or go down (iPad 2 vs iPad 3) for a replacement model.

For those that have purchased a 5D3 (and more so if you did buy the 5D2 like Adrian) - do you feel the extra 1000 is justified?
I have had every 5D model and don't mind the price at all.

People are maybe thinking that this is a minor upgrade but it is really the '3' series camera everyone has been waiting for from Canon.

Especially considering that I paid around $3500 Aust for the 5D2 and got the 5D3 for $3600 - thank you Aussie dollar Smile

I can get 2 bodies for close to the price of the 1DX - with not much to separate them and higher resolution on the 5D3.

Of course if you are shooting for a hobby I can imagine it is harder to swallow. That said the 5D2 is a steal at the moment and is still a great camera.
Canon stuff.
Read a very interesting post from another wedding shooter who is using the new 5D3.

Some points covered:
- Only shooting in RAW for important shots, and JPG for the rest due to the large file sizes. 3000 images for the shoot, half in JPG resulted in 32 GB of data

- High ISO shooting - as expected, 102,400 is not usable, with plasticky images after running through noise reduction in Lightroom. ISO 51,200 is ok for smaller images, and ISO 25,600 is completely usable.
After shooting a 60gb wedding on the weekend (2300+ photos) with a 5D3 on one shoulder and 5D2 on the other... I'm very happy with the 5D3.
It fitted seamlessly into my workflow, felt completely natural to use and easy to take advantage of the new features. In fact it required *less* thought to operate than the 5D2 because it copes so well in low light and tricky AF situations. It handled everything I threw at it without breaking a sweat. The much-improved AF and low-light performance were an absolute godsend, allowing me to concentrate more on the bride and groom in the fading light instead of worrying about ISO and shutter speed.

Jules, regarding those 2 points you raise above, I don't really subscribe to either of them, but it was an interesting read thanks. :p
- I always shoot RAW regardless. It means I don't need to keep a very close eye on WB or blowing out highlights in the bridal gown because I can fix those things in PP, and I don't need to keep switching between RAW and JPG (and potentially forgetting). Memory cards are cheap. HDD space is cheap. RAWs can be converted to JPGs and then deleted later. It's cheap insurance IMHO, and allows more time to concentrate on the task at hand.
- With the 5D2, I feel comfortable only shooting up to 3200iso. I only go to 6400 if I get *really* desperate. But I feel quite comfortable shooting the 5D3 up to 12800iso, and would go to 25600 only if I had no other choice. In real-world usage (where NR and PP are applied as appropriate to get the best results for my taste), the 5D3 seems to have a solid 2-stop advantage in noise, and seems to keep more detail in the image while doing it.
I haven't done any prints from this camera at any iso yet, but I suspect 25600 will only be good for prints smaller than 8"x12" (for my taste). I think a well-exposed shot at 12800iso with some noise-reduction could look fantastic up to 16"x24" though. And it's rare that my photos need to be printed larger than that.
Adrian Broughton
My Website:
My Blog:
You can also visit me on Facebook!
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." - Einstein.
Apparently Canon have acknowledged a problem and are working on a fix for a problem - where in near darkness the metering will be affected by the light from the LCD panel.

Quote:"In extremely dark environments, if the LCD panel illuminates, the displayed exposure value may change as a result of the AE sensor’s detection of light from the LCD panel," a Canon product advisory reads.

Admittedly though this is a pretty rare use case but good to know if you're ever in the same situation - until Canon can come up with a fix anyway.
Never owned or felt need to own a 5D of any description. The "problem fix" above sounds to me like a disingenuous and mock-self-deprecatory way of drawing attention to how sellable Canon imagine the camera to be and thus a wee bit sickmaking. This sklilfully fields any AF-prejudice a punter may(quite appropriately) import to the pre-buying experience, by drawing attention to a "problem" that is just a thinly-veiled statement of what an uber-meter Canon wants us to think it has(and it may, of course). Am being perhaps a tad cynical...but yet again, whereas I do enjoy Canon kit I do realise it's about market shares, bless 'em.
All my stuff is here:
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist:
Zig - people have been talking about this on the web. Canon is just acknowledging that their is an issue. That said - it is a non issue as far as I am concerned.

Canon stuff.
Bit of a twist on this issue - this time Canon have put out a press release, saying that (1) only certain cameras are affected, and (2) of those, it will only affect exposure in extremely dark environments and not noticeably. Those customers who are still concerned and want further peace of mind will have the opportunity to send in their cameras for an inspection free of charge starting in mid-May.
Lensrentals, who received their first shipment of "fixed" 5D Mark IIIs from Canon, have done a teardown to inspect what has actually been fixed. Looks like it's just a tape job... Big Grin
That's not "tape", that's a Flexible Self-Adhering Light-Impermiable Interior Shield.

(I tried to make up an amusing acronym, but failed. Smile )

Most of the comments that I'm seeing online are some variation of "I don't see the problem, I'm not sending mine in". I can't wait until these start showing up on eBay and crookslist and every single one will say that it's been retrofitted by the factory. • @matthewpiers | | @thewsreviews •

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