There has been a lot of speculations and rumors but yesterday it was finally announced the Canon 5DMKIII.
For me the 5DMKII was a game changer due to the video options, there were a lot of limitations at start but Canon released some firmware fixes and the video rocked, only real problem for me is the fact that when you change to record mode the HDMI output switched to SD output, but I can live with that for now….
Today on the blog the specs and my opinion, it’s just a fun blog post but feel free to add your thoughts.

By the way you can pre-order the camera here : B&H or here (use these links and support the blog)

Let’s start with the specs :
22.3 MP, 14 bits RAW, 6 fps, Dual card, new superimposed LCD, 100% coverage viewfinder, ISO 50-102400, new metering and AF system.


I already hear people complaining that they want more MP, well I can be short with this, you don’t.
Ok I shoot MF and I own a 33MP back but when I shoot outside or in the street I often use the 5DMKII for the simple reason that it’s boots faster, it’s got better ISO performance, it’s quicker overall and the image quality is MORE than enough for A2 prints (about the biggest I ever print) and I mean MORE than enough. So I’m actually a little bit glad it’s not running into the 30MP’s or more. The reason is simple.


I don’t need more than 22MP for most of my work (I think all of my work), but what I do need it CLEAN 22MP, files I can push and pull and that don’t fall apart quickly. The new 5DMKIII promises just that, smoother transitions, less noise and better overall quality (what ever that might be), when I compared for example the ISO100 files from my Leaf Aptus22 to the 5DMKII 22MP files there was a clear difference after Photoshop (although little on most files), however the files that needed to be “pixel pushed” those stayed a lot better on the MF camera, so let’s hope the new MKIII files also show some of that performance.


New Digic5+
Promises to be 17 times faster than the Digic4, meaning the camera will perform better, but will also of course give you some better image quality. The bump from 3.9 to 6 fps is something I welcome, I love to do sports as a hobby and although I never really hated the 3.9 fps the new speed bump to 6 will be fun.


61 Point AF system
Yes, that’s huge. I never really liked the AF performance of the 5DMKII compared to the 1D series, it was ok (don’t get me wrong) but especially when shooting a series there often were some images not as sharp as they could be, now we get a professional kind of “array”, 61 points.
The autofocus system is broken down into several modes, featuring up to 41 cross-type AF points across the image and 5 dual diagonal points. Focus control is segregated into 6 different methods: Spot, Single Point, Single + 4 Adjacent Points, Single + 8 Adjacent Points, Zone Selection and Automatic AF Point Selection. This variety helps to suit the requirements of any situation, including extremely low light conditions. The AF system revolves around a 100,000-pixel RGB sensor for intelligent automatic AF point selection. This intuitive point positioning is especially crucial when using autofocus to track quickly moving subjects. Making use of the EOS iTR (Intelligent Tracking and Recognition) system, the 5D Mark III is able to recognize and address the facial and color characteristics of different subjects, for focus tracking while panning and moving across the scene.


iFCL 63 zone DL metering
Playing off the AF system, the metering system has also become more intelligent and critical in terms of analyzing subjects to help determine the best exposure possible. The 5D Mark III independently analyzes focus, color and luminance across the 63 zones that comprise the image area. The dual-layer design of the metering sensor provides a wider sensitivity to different wavelengths of light, countering the common issues that are generally associated with electronic sensors. On the 5D Mark III, these layers are split between a red/green channel and a blue/green channel, giving relief to the inherent red bias that sensors are usually known for. Data from each layer is analyzed and combined into a highly accurate metering and subsequent exposure setting.


HD Video
This is something that gets me more and more excited.
I hope of course that the HDMI output will now be 1080P or at least 720P, and I see no reason why not with the new CPU.
But we now also get 720P 60 which is awesome for slow motion material and we can now record up to 29.59 minutes in one run. There will also be manual adjustments during video for audio and video. I hope the storage of the video will be better but we will see when it’s released and the pros test this. The storage will be done as H262 MPEG4 AVC IPB or I frame only.


In camera HDR
I don’t yet know how this will translate for myself but the idea is great. HDR is getting more and more into my street photography, so time will tell if this is a real enhancement I will use, but I think I will.


New viewfinder
On the surface, the optical viewfinder provides 100% field of view and aspherical lens elements for a bright, clear view with a reduction in chromatic aberrations and distortions. This high-grade viewfinder is further enhanced with the integration of a superimposed transparent LCD that displays autofocus and exposure information. This newly developed Intelligent Viewfinder gives a range of information, and is easily turned off to return you to the clear, unadulterated view from the optical finder itself. The displayed AF information and grid lines can be customized and the AF meter can also be segregated to the side of the viewfinder outside of the image area. A newly designed LCD shows an increase in size (3.2″ compared to the Mark II’s 3.0″) and resolution (1,040,000 over 920,000-dots). Increases in size and resolution allow for even more critical review of imagery and videos and a reflection-resistant multi-coating enables monitoring in bright conditions. Both the viewfinder and rear LCD support Dual Axis Electronic Levels, a feature that visually displays a level as well as roll and tilt information. This is particularly useful for photographing landscapes or in situations where horizons must be straight and convergence is to be avoided.


Dual cards
Love this feature. I still have a lot of CF cards but let’s be honest for the future it’s a wise decision to have two cards in a camera like this, for example one for video and one for stills, and with pricing going down and memory going up I love the new SD cards as an option.


Will I get it?
I always say that I will only upgrade when I hit the edge of the performance of my camera, or in other words don’t burn money if you don’t need. This is also a reason why I still use the AptusII7 back and did not yet upgrade to the more MP versions (I will probably when the displays get better) However seeing the difference in High ISO performance of the 1Dx I can’t wait to test-drive the 5DMKIII, I’m always pushing the envelope with High ISO when I use the 5DMKII and although it never really let me down I would love a noise free ISO3200 and a usable 12800 let’s hope the 5DMKIII will give us that. Also I hope the output for video will be of better quality than it’s now, I’m using the SmallHD monitor and seeing the preview in 1080 is awesome but when you hit record you can really see the video taking a huge hit (duh) so if that changes it would be worth the upgrade alone.


The new additions of a GPS tracker and wifi are options I’m looking into, the GPS will probably be bought by me although I use a loose tracker now but having it in the camera would be a welcome addition, the Phototracker I use now means I have to use different software when I’m back in the hotel, sync the files and the tracker eats my batteries, so having it in camera would be great. I’ve already pre-ordered mine looking forward to receiving it.


Some parts are taken from this article from our friends at B&H

17 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Nice article Frank, but when i read the specs of this cam i must say im not gonna buy it.

    Body 3500 euro, new 24-70 lens 2500 euro, system flash 750 euro.
    Buy some accessoires and a bag with it and your account goes down with 7500 euro.

    A lot of money for a better AF, a lil more speed, and better video?
    Btw when you want to make good professional video’s you have to add a lil 2500 euro to your bill im afraid.

    Makes a total price of 10.000 euro.
    Im very satisfied with my mkII and still make stunning prints with it.
    This time i leave the money in my pocket.

    • jan kruize
      jan kruize says:

      Off course, but when you want a better cam with a better sensor, you want better flash and better glass. And a 24-70 thats twice as expensive as the old one, it should be better.
      Nikon comes with a 38MP cam thats 700 euros cheaper. Files to big? Maybe but its for sure it gives a more detailed pic. Yes more noise on hi iso? The question is how much more. Alot or a lil bit?

    • Frank Doorhof
      Frank Doorhof says:

      Really don’t understand your way of thinking 🙂
      It’s the same MPs so no need for better glass, plus glass won’t let you be able to tell your story better, cleaner high ISO will and so will faster AF and better video.

      I’m already using Pocketwizards for my flash so also there no need to invest, system works flawless and over larger distances than the 30mtr from Canon (although I never ever needed more than 20).

      IF there would be a bump from let’s say 22 to 39mp than MAYBE you would need better glass, but I don’t even think that. In this case everything sharpness/pixels etc. stays app the same so really no need to upgrade anything else than the body.

      Again I’m dying to see what the high ISO is doing, that’s one of my main reasons to upgrade stills wise.

    • MarkV
      MarkV says:

      I understand what Jan is saying about the lenses. Even with the same body (in my case the 7D) my newest lens (the 100mm IS L) delivers sharper images than my older lenses (like my 70-200 IS L).

      I was waiting for a new 24-70 before I’d go fullframe (because lots of people aren’t very happy with the first version of this lens). I think the new version will be what I would expect of a new L lens, but for me the price is way too high. That means that I’ll have to rethink which wide angle lens I should  buy when going fullframe.I know it doesn’t help you tell a story, but when buying a lens I prefer it to be the best value for my money.

      And about the 5D mark 3: I’m very excited about the update of the autofocus so that it’s better performing in low light (because for me low light is one of the situations I’d want to buy a full frame for). I hope the ISO performance will be as good as I read in the first hands on reviews. I’ll probably buy the camera this year, but I’m still hoping that the price will drop a bit once it’s available in the stores (especially since the D800 is a lot cheaper)

  2. Andrew Macpherson
    Andrew Macpherson says:

    I’m surprised you’re prepared to pay twice the price of a normal GPS unit. That struck me as an extreme case of “because they can” pricing, especially with he really good geotagging in Lr4B, when used in conjunction with GPX Master+ with it’s automatic track transfer using Dropbox. (some notes in my blog as part of a different subject http://andrew.knots.net/rugby-from-the-stands )

    Otherwise I too am really excited by this new body, I’ll probably also pass on the hyper expensive WiFi, and make do with the vertical battery grip and an L bracket

  3. Brendan Maunder
    Brendan Maunder says:

    I must say I would be interested to see how the in camera HDR turns out.  HDR is an artistic choice as there are a heap of different ways it can be applied, so how have the applied it….  Who knows… Will it be practical in the real world…. maybe, maybe not, I guess only time will tell.

  4. Ronald Pronk
    Ronald Pronk says:

    I am trilled with the new AF, this is what i was hoping for. The better sound set-up is also a big plus, and of-coarse a wider ISO range is nice. The price however seems high to me. I will wait until beginning of next year hoping the price will drop under € 3000,- which at time a would buy it.

  5. Vincent Armee
    Vincent Armee says:

    The new Canon 5D mark III, another big step in the right direction. The number of megapixels is fine, I need more dynamic range and less noise vs. megapixels. I also expect a lot of the new autofocus system, the focus system of the Mark II was a bit to unreliable. the Mark III misses one thing I miss and that is a rapid communication port for tethered shooting, USB II is a bit on the slow side. I would have preferred a 1000 Mbit network connection, firewire or maybe a Thunderbolt connection.

  6. Leo Koach
    Leo Koach says:

    Canon 5D Mark III – Auto focus is faster than 550 horse power Ferrari – 1,258 AF points, nothing missed on the face to focus, including a piece of meet stuck between her teeth
    – ISO 3 million 40 thousand… You sure can take wedding photos, in a
    closet with no light, either bride and groom wants you there while
    they’re banging or not. – 100 Frame
    Per second to see a car flipping in the air and expression of the driver
    while ejecting from the car… don’t miss a millisecond of it – SHD
    (Super HD) movie option with AF… Oscar Guaranteed results. On the
    dial, there is a “Porn” option to avoid sweat on the view finder. –
    67 thousand menu option. You can adjust everything and everything in it
    with very sensitive measurements… yet, camera does it all for you
    automatically if you select “A” – Radar detector. Finally someone thought about that. Just put the camera on your dashboard, and stop those speed tickets. – WiFi option to send text messages from one camera to any phone. – 23 inch screen in the back to chimp around much easier. – Touchscreen image editor. You can get rid of all the hair on her face, before it gets out of the camera. – Toaster option with Jelly dispenser next to 5 built in memory card holder. – Comes in 8 colors, including pink and shit color Remember, they all thinking about YOU photographers 😉 ******************
    Sarcasm is not for Canon only, but all new cameras coming out every
    other month now. This is a pee contest, who can pee farther. Love your
    current camera and learn how to take good photos instead.

  7. Patrick van Ewijk
    Patrick van Ewijk says:

    Frank I was waiting for the mk3 to come out and been waiting to upgrade but after I seen the price I am not going for it yet, I still shoot with my mk1 and happy with it for now. i now have too save a little longer than i thought. great specs not so great price BUT it is not a mk2 replaicement (i got this from the canon webside) it surpose too be between the mk2 and the 1dx.
    but I do think they are going a little crazy with the prices looking at the latest lens 24-70 does that realy warent twice the price?

    Frank just a question are the buttons on the top right (in front off the lcd) off the camera in the same position iso,wb…..

  8. Torsten Kieslich
    Torsten Kieslich says:

    Well, the specs sound quite great and I think it will be a good upgrade for a lot of Canon shooters.  I completely agree with your reasoning – having used an Aptus 22 for a while now I’ve really love the sensor real estate. I’m completely happy with the 22MP it delivers as I just get the necessary amount to crop shots a little in post. 

    Being a Nikon shooter in the DSLR world I still use a D3 although I consider an to a D800 (the price point simply is tempting). I hope it will be just as good in terms of noise. One reader mentioned the “because they can” pricing of add-ons. Nikon does the same with the vertical grip. It’s ridiciolusly overpriced in the 400 Euros price range (compared to previous models). 

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