The Canon 5DSr Wedding Photography review – Part 2
The 5DSr, a camera with short man syndrome and a shotgun[/caption]
As far as lenses go I was surprised with what I thought I’d see and what I actually got. Generally any Canon glass older than 5 years suffers a little. Yet, the 24L and 35L really shine at F2. The Sigma 50 Art is absolutely gorgeous except I don’t really use that focal length much and I’m hoping to get my hands on the newly announced 24-35 F2 zoom from Sigma. If it’s in line with their art series of glass we could be on to a win.
The 24-70mk II performs well as does the 70-200 F4, it actually focuses quicker on the 5DSr than it does on the 5D3. Take from that what you will.
The worries about the high pixel density and the shutter speed = focal length are just that, worries. It’s not like the D800 where the images were slightly blurred, the 5DSr is a camera I can happy shoot without the worry of blurring. Generally I don’t shoot slower than 1/60 anyway so the only thing I need to step up for is my 85L, 135L and 200L. The rest either have image stability or are super wide.
The 35L loves this camera[/caption]
Now onto the not so great which are really more niggles that could be addressed with firmware updates of which I only have three:
1: Mraw is compressed raw. This has always been the case but really, give us some more file options please. DNG would be a good start. I want to shoot and know I have the full raw data to work with. There may well be a great reason at Canon for this but let us choose what we want to work with and also allow some of us to continue using Lightroom 5 (which actually works vs LRCC which doesn’t).
If I had uncompressed Mraw (28mp) then I’d replace my 5D3 with another 5DSr as let’s be honest, table shots, photos of the table plan and other stuff doesn’t warrant the resolution and I’m that guy who’ll forget he’s in Mraw and start shooting the couple shots and formals so I stick in full size raw and leave it at that.
Also, I’m swerving a little bit here but if you’re put off by the 50mp file size don’t be. Just edit as normal and store as lossy DNG’s when the edit is done. 128gb of CR2 files compresses to 15-55gb depending on the ISO’s used. You can’t really tell the difference either and it’s unlikely you’ll need them again anyway.
2: Please enable the same Register/recall shooting function (CF section 3 – Custom controls) as the 1DX, in the 1DX I can say that when I press the AF-on button it will jump into a shooting mode (like TV or AV) even if I’m in Manual mode. The way it’s set means that pressing the button will only use a setting for that mode.
It makes the feature pretty useless and can’t help but feel it’s crippled somehow. This feature was what spurred me to buy the 5DSr, the ease of use. So, Masaya Maeda, if you’re reading this could you please have this fixed?
- 3: Image view and zoom time. This kind of links to point number one. Whenever you look at a shot you’ve taken in the camera you are looking at the jpeg file that comes part and parcel with the raw file. If you’re used to using Perfect Browse or Photo Mechanic to sort your files before editing in Lightroom then you’ll know what I’m talking about.
The problem is that these appear to be full size super huge 50mp jpegs and this slows down the whole viewing and preview process. Zooming into these files is a bit slow. It’s not a serious problem as it’s not too slow, but how about Canon gives us the option on what file size is used for the jpeg preview contained in the raw. Like 12mp or something so we can check the focus quickly and go back to the shooting. I’m not overly fussed if this slows down the overall buffer unload time but I’d like to have that as a choice I make rather than it being forced upon me.
Other than that, no real issues. It’s a great camera and worth the money.
In comparison with other cameras and looking to the future….
It’s very difficult to not notice how far Sony have come with their sensor tech. I mean look at what they have now, it’s great. But it’s still consumer level. When I heard about the A7rii and after shooting with a second who had an A7s, A7ii and GH4 setup I bought an A7ii. It’s a really good camera, with professional quality photos but it’s still a consumer body which won’t last a season with me.
You can throw body stabilisation, tilt screen, wifi and so on at the A7 but it is most definitely not a pro level camera and shouldn’t be treated like one. If my Canon goes wrong it’s at CPS in Elstree and back in 4 days. I have pro features such as dual card slots for image security and this supercedes any features. (But a tilt screen and global shutter would be nice all the same).
I also feel at this point now there isn’t a lot between sensors, I edited D750 and A7ii files and they are all pretty bad when pushed. You’ve 2-3 stops at best and that’s in line with the 5DSr. Things may fall about a bit in the higher ISO’s but that’s when photographic technique should overcome laziness.
The big brother of the A7ii, the A7rii sounds sexy on paper but again, it’s a consumer body with pro features so is discounted from the running. I’m almost tempted to get it for the true silent shutter but it’s a lot of money to pay for one feature on a camera with only a single card slot. That’s not knocking the A7 series either, great cameras if I was going on holiday but also Sony raws are compressed. Like, WTF Sony.
***Update 9th August 2015***
So I’ve had my hands on the A7rii files after shooting a wedding with a second photographer. The silent shutter is beautiful, but above ISO3200 the A7rii is about a stop worse in noise levels. What is acceptable ISO12800 on the Canon is unacceptable with the Sony. Correctly exposed ISO100 files are nice from both cameras but the 5DSr ones look more crisp and clear with the A7 files looking slightly warmer. Good files from both cameras nonetheless but the Canon definitely takes the lead in normal use image quality.
It’s also been pointed out that the A7rii only shoots in 12bit when using the silent shutter or bulb mode, stuff landscape shooters will tend to use for reduced shutter vibration……
Thinking forward to the next 5D if you scale down the current 5DSr tech from 50mp to 25mp in theory doubling the pixel size what kind of camera would you end up with and how fast would it shoot? Would you still need a Sony sensor in them because I really don’t think it’ll need it when reflecting on how good this sensor is. I don’t want my greens to look radioactive and Canon really does have the best colours.
I’d love something like a mini 1DX. In fact I’ll say it now, 18mp is enough, the sensor in the 1DX is great and good enough, it’s just missing a (truly) silent shutter and the body is too big and heavy for continuous all day shooting which is why the 5DSr is so attractive.
The Elephant in the room is the Pentax 645z but I consider it a completely different class of camera. A body which costs 2-3 times as much as the 5DSr (depending on where you look) and not exactly the best service setup in the world. (Pentax France had a 300mm lens for three months and I got fed up waiting for service and asked for it back). That’s not very good if most of my work is between May and September. But, if you are looking for that larger sensor look and have the money then yes the Pentax is great but the 5DSr is snipping at it’s heals with it’s lens selection, price, resolution, colours and when shooting at ISO100 there’s not much difference.
Sure there are guys who will pull out MTF charts, quote DXOmark and do 100% pixel peeping but really it’s not that important. If we are serving clients, couples and people who want their lives and loves represented they aren’t going to give two craps about how much shadow recovery is in that tree bark.
It’s more important to me that the usability, interface, lens selection and colour output is there than the amount of dynamic range there is and how far I can unscrew the photos I screwed up.
Am I happy with my purchase? Absolutely.
As with all my reviews I make available a massive amount of raw files to download.
Below is the opportunity to download 191 raw files consisting of:
- 102 raw files from 4 weddings
- 89 files of which are made up of ISO ranges 100, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400 and 12800 from the following cameras: Canon 5DSr, 5D3, 1DX, A7ii and the Pentax 645z. Also included is a selection of ISO100, 400 and 800 where the images were underexposed on purpose by 4 stops.
These images are also ‘warts and all’ and I’ve done my best to give you under exposed, over exposed and tricky focus situations. In order to ensure compatibility with software across machines (like Lightroom 5) I’ve converted the raws to uncompressed, lossless DNG format so you should have no problem looking at them regardless of your setup.
In total the file sizes collectively run in at 8.7GB and I can’t offer this for free (sorry guys but the host needs paying).
Payment is only available by Paypal, my address for payment is firstname.lastname@example.org
The cost is 5 GBP and once payment is received the download link will be sent to the email address registered to your Paypal account. This is a manual process and I’ll send the files ASAP.
Have fun with these files but please respect the copyright on them. I hope it helps you to make a decision over which camera is best for you!
50mp, Canon 1DX, Canon 5D3, Canon 5Ds, Canon 5DSr, comparisons, Dynamic Range, Nikon D750, Pentax 645z, Real life, Real world, review, SIgma 24-35mm, Sigma F2 zoom, Sony A7ii, Sony A7rii, Sony Exmor, Wedidng Photography