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Thread: Best FF bodies for high ISO?

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    can't remember
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    Best FF bodies for high ISO?

    (1) What are the best full frame bodies for high ISO these days?

    (2) Is the difference significant?

    My 5D II shutter blew the other day and I need to replace it. The obvious thing is to get a 5D III (or one of its variants) but before I do, these questions would be useful to have answers to. I use the 5D II for a variety of tasks and I probably wouldn't switch camps just for high ISO work, but one of the things I loved about it was its amazing ability to produce good clean shots at silly light levels. I understand that more modern cameras are (amazingly!) even better again, but I haven't been following the latest models for quite a while now and am out of touch.

    Is there a huge difference between the main brands and models as regards high ISO work? If it isn't all that much, it would be most convenient to stay with Canon. But if the difference is big enough, I am not averse to sneaking an other-brand cuckoo into my all-Canon nest. (As per sig I use multiple bodies; if I added an other-brand camera I'd only get one, at most two lenses for it. A 24-70 or something similar.)

    Thanks for all responses!
    Tony

    Edit and critique at will. Tokina 10-17 fish, Canon 10-22, 24-105, 100-400, TS-E 24, 35/1.4, 60 macro, 100L macro, 500/4, Wimberley, MT-24EX, 580EX-II, 1D IV, 7D, 5D II, 50D.

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    Ausphotography Regular Brian500au's Avatar
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    Looking at your sig, and if I had to replace a body today with good high ISO i would venture to a 5DIII. They can be had second hand at a great price or new at a bargain price (compared to when they were first released). If I did not need it today (and your sig suggests you have enough bodies to tie you over) I would wait for the confirmed specs on the 5DIV. It cannot be far away, and going by the 5DR / S I am quite excited on what it may bring with it.

    In todays market there area myriad of options available, but if you are in the same boat as me, then your current lens collection will determine the brand of body you will purchase in the future.
    www.kjbphotography.com.au

    1Dx, 5DsR, 200-400 f4L Ext, 100-400 f4.5-5.6L II, 70-300 f4-5.6L IS, 70-200 f2.8L IS II, 24-70 f2.8L II, 16-35 f4 IS, 11-24 f4L, 85 f1.2L II, 500 f4L IS, 300 f2.8 IS, ∑50 f1.4 A


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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    In your case Tony, I totally agree with Kel, there is a lot said on the 'net by the measurabators comparing the abilities of Canon --- Nikon/Sony --- Sony bodies at high iso levels but all I see are excellent images from all the cameras when "proper" photographs are taken.
    Unless you want insane iso levels to photograph some black coloured bird that lives in abandoned gold mines down your way, the 5D 111 is going to work very well.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    Member Morgo's Avatar
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    What about just getting the 5dII shutter replaced?

    IMO I wouldn't buy a new 5d3 now so close to it being replaced.

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    There are some measurable differences between bodies out there but whether they make much difference in your shooting envelope is another story.
    But out of current Canon bodies, the 1Dx performs the best at high ISO. The bang for buck has to go to the 5D III though.
    However, be reminded that next year's an Olympic year which mean both Nikon and Canon are on the cusp of releasing their new flagship bodies if we go by their release history. Can you wait to see what's around the corner.

    From the other brands, realistically I think only Sony A7 series in mark II guise are options and you'd need to mount your Canon lenses via adapters. But there are good reports of the Metabones adapters that will include AF.
    Getting used to Sony ergonomics and UI is another story.
    A7s is optimised for high ISO shooting and video but does so at 12MP.
    A7r II is probably the peak sensor currently by measurements and does so at 42MP. Real world - again, hard to say whether it makes much difference depending on how you shoot and process your images.
    Nikon FX

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    Excellent, helpful answers. Thankyou gentlemen. My take-away is that there isn't a huge difference, in which case I am free to get whatever is most convenient and suits my lenses. (I hear Canon users grumbling about high ISO v various other brands from time to time: I thought that was just the usual grumbling but it's wise to check. If necessary, I was prepared to go to another brand and buy one, at most two, lenses for it. Pleased to see that there is little if anything to be gained there.)

    With my 5D II broken, I don't have a full frame body. (The 1D IV would do at a pinch, but it's usually attached to my best birding lens.)

    I'm reluctant to have the shutter replaced on the 5D II. It would be quite expensive, and at the end of it I'd still only have a 5D II - wonderful sensor with a stone-age AF system. I can live with the AF if I have to, but would rather not.

    As several helpful people say, there will be a 5D IV soon. Should I wait? Probably not: I need something to use in the meantime and the 5D IV will doubtless cost more than a 5D III. I have also considered the 6D but it seems like quite a lot of money for a camera that is missing several things I'd want (such as CF rather than SD cards, but a number of other features too.) Or, I could have the 5D II repaired ($800? Probably at least that) and wait for the 5D IV release, taking my choice of a new 5D IV or a cheap run-out 5D III at that time.

    Anyway, the main question is whether I should consider a Nikon/Pentax/Sony body, and the clear answer is no. Good to have that settled. Thankyou all!

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    Ausphotography Regular Brian500au's Avatar
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    I also have a 6D but it serves a specific purpose in my line up and that is as a travelling body. You are right, it is missing a several things but most of all for me is the AF system and the small buffer. At the time it was half the price of the 5DIII and I really needed a lighter body to travel with. Since then my wife bought a 100D and I cannot put it down.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tannin View Post
    .....

    Anyway, the main question is whether I should consider a Nikon/Pentax/Sony body, and the clear answer is no. Good to have that settled. Thankyou all!
    I wouldn't discount the Sony option as quickly as say the other brands .. even tho your affinity for Sony products has been previously catalogued

    So Swifty's comments actually make more sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by swifty View Post
    .....

    From the other brands, realistically I think only Sony A7 series in mark II guise are options and you'd need to mount your Canon lenses via adapters. But there are good reports of the Metabones adapters that will include AF ......
    The other advantages of the Sony are that it has built in image stabilisation too(can be handy on the odd situation), and more importantly the best tonal range recovery(along with the Nikon and Pentax bodies that share the same Sony sensors)
    Of course I'd exclude Nikon and Pentax on the basis that you don't get AF with any lens adapters you'd have to use .. etc.
    But I think the shadow recovery ability of the Sony A7 series shouldn't be something to overlook to quickly(if you're in the market for a secondary body right now).

    If I could justify the expense(and a considerable one at that), I'd have myself a Sony A7IIr myself, with an adapter for Nikon lenses.

    I'm still not a fan of the 'supposedly' fantastic EVF ... but that's a matter of taste to different people(not my cuppa).

    FWIW: why I'd like an A7rII is simply for the stabilisation in body, for use on some of my manual Nikon lenses.

    But now on the flip side of the dilemma, why not consider a 5Dsr? I'm sure you could use the resolution in some way, and also all that extra resolution can be helpful in terms of final SNR when output is equalised too.

    I just finished reading this comparison between a D810 5Dsr and A7rII
    If I were in your situation, it'd come down to the 5Dsr or the Sony .. and even if I had all your Canon gear .. I'd be leaning more towards the Sony(+ Canon adapter) + a lens or two for the full advantage of the Sony AF system.
    ps. like the chap says/implies in the comparison, until the new firmware to allow 14 bit capture on the Sonys .. the Sony wasn't even a consideration. Now all they need to do is also offer 14 bit PLUS a good compression scheme for raw files, but the 14bit option was a desperately needed muck up on their part.

    ps. Oh! and another thing I wasn't overly fond of the Sony(A7/A7r) was the small body size .. actually smallish grip size. Again this is my preference/taste(actually need!). I prefer the walk around with camera in hand method of walkign around with camera at hand
    D300 is the minimum grip size I could comfortably cope with all day. D800 is perfect. Perfectly shaped and sized for my hand.
    Smaller is harder to hold without suffering a cramping effect due to the way my fingers have to pinch the camera as a holding action. The much lighter weight of the A7 bodies was nicer .. but then again the D70s is also lighter .. maybe as light as an A7 .. but I can't hold it all day(grip size too small). So my issue is simply ergonomics. For the dame reason I convinced myself NOT to get the Df(Nikon) I almost tried to get earlier this year. After barely 10 seconds holding it, my better (ergonomic) judgement overpowered my stupid presumption that ISO 200K was what I needed.

    In a nutshell .. if you have reconsidered discounting the Sony .. you have to get on in hand(and up to eye level) to decide if it's something you like. ALl the glowing reports are meaningless if there is a major failing in another area of the design that precludes you using it.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


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    Member Morgo's Avatar
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    How good are you with electronics?

    You could replace your 5D II's shutter yourself for around $100. A stop gap say until the new 5DIV is released.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Genuine-New-...wAAMXQlgtSxQaN
    http://petapixel.com/2015/01/05/repl...-ii-saved-400/

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I think the only issue with a DIY job is the ability to confirm the shutter speed accuracy.

    My understanding of shutter mechanisms is that over time they lose accuracy.
    Nikon only recently (abt 2008 or so) added a small IR diode on the mechanism to confirm shutter speed for both accuracy and operation .. I think.
    It actually became an issue with IR conversions on cameras like D700's where the IR emission of the shutter sensor would be captured in an IR image capture.

    So if the camera doesn't have a shutter accuracy mechanism .. how do you know if it's accurate.

    I would do most of the jobs that are reasonably possible on a modern DSLR, if it were dead ... why not? It's already dead .. I couldn't possibly make it any more dead.

    But a shutter .. even tho it's not impossible to do, I wouldn't waste the money and effort if it then caused accuracy issues down the track.

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