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Canon 5D Mark III vs Canon 6D Mark II


What makes a good camera? Usability is a key thing because the controls will be the thing you use the most, while those controls have to be fast and easy to operate as well. Nowadays, there are a lot of cameras in the market, but only a few of them include all the features and the things that you would need for your hobby, or work.

For this article, we will try to compare to remarkable DSLRs which have been a popular option among photography enthusiasts for years now, while they both come at a similar price range, one of them slightly outperforms the other in some aspects, which we’ll talk about later in this review.

Let’s introduce these cameras to you, shall we? Maybe you’ve heard of them, or seen them in action since you’re reading this review.

The first is the Canon 5D Mark III, and it is simply a camera that you can’t go wrong with since it has a stunning full-frame and fluid performance with high-resolution image capture, the Canon 5D Mark III is designed and built with quality and performance in mind.

There are a couple of fields this camera is better suited for, such as weddings, studios, still, photography, or out in the field, either way, this camera is going to get the job done for you.

We’ll talk about more details later in this review, however, just to make sure you know, this camera is not recommended if you’re just starting out, it is rather recommended for semi-professionals, and professionals who’ve had experience with premium features, and know how to use them. It’s not that you won’t be able to use it, but you’ll be better off with an entry-level DSLR since they also come at more affordable prices.

As for the second camera, we have the Canon 6D Mark II. I’m pretty sure I’ve made a review about this camera in the past, however, it is always fun to talk about such cameras, so for this article, I’m going to try to explain everything in details, comparing them both form the slightest differences to the largest.

The Canon 6D Mark II is known for its superb performance on the go, while this is also a full-frame camera but different from the 5D Mark III, this one puts all its performance into a compact, fully featured DSLR.

I don’t really want to spoil everything in the beginning, so let’s start reviewing both these cameras, while we will also do a head-to-head comparison in order to deliver you the most precise and accurate information that I can.

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Head To Head Comparison

Canon 5D Mark III

This may be an older version of the 5D legacy, however, it is still a great camera for those after a feature-packed full-frame DSLR, and it is one of the most popular options for this type of category to this day.

This particular model has a 22.3MP sensor, whereas the 5D Mark III has only one processor if you compare it to other Canon models, however, in combination with its eight-channel readout, it means that it has a top continuous shooting speed of 6fps, which is not much, but it is enough considering the price.

When it comes to sensitivity, it may be set between the range of ISO100-25,600 in 1/3-stop or whole stop increments, while it can also be expanded to include L: ISO 50, H1: ISO 51200, H2 ISO102,400.

The metering system is also to be acknowledged since it has been upgraded to Canon’s iFCL metering, while this can be counted as an advantage in some situations, in some it can be disappointing due to the fact that in dark or light main subjects, the results won’t be the same as you expect it.

Also, the 5D Mark III has the same video capabilities that were on the Mark II, it hasn’t changed much of its specifications, although, I still think that they’re good enough for a full-frame DSLR of this price range.

To continue, Canon has also included a live view/movie switch on the rear in order to speed up movie activation. Other than that, in terms of versatility, there are other improvements as well, such as the headphone socket for monitoring the stereo audio.

Until the introduction of this camera was made, Canon didn’t have any DSLR with in-camera HDR recording, so this was also one of the reasons how this camera gained its reputation. To be more precise, the 5D Mark III is capable of recording and merging three shots to produce a high dynamic range image.

For those who are just starting out, it’s good to know that this is extremely useful, since it can record all three shots as well as the processed HDR image, while if you decide to shoot raw and JPEG images simultaneously, you will end up with 7 images, not to forget also the three raw files that you can process yourself if you wish.

In terms of construction, the manufacturer claims that the Canon 5D Mark III is weatherproof, which means that you can use it in the rain, and it is also dust-resistant. I’ve used this camera for about 2 years, and I can confidently back up this statement from Canon.

Furthermore, since we’re speaking about the camera’s construction, there is also a finger grip which is covered in a textured rubber-like coating that will allow you to hold the camera in your hands safe and comfortable, while the contours on the front and on the rear will also help greatly in this aspect.

All and all, this camera definitely deserves its reputation, and if you’re looking for a camera that is great for weddings, studios, still photography, or for out in the field, this would be the ideal choice for you.

Canon 5D Mark III Sample Footage:

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Canon 6D Mark II

The Canon 6D Mark II is a uniquely designed full-frame DSLR, and personally, I consider it to be the most well-rounded camera for this price range, and it is a pleasure to shoot with not only because of the features that it has but also because of the aesthetics.

Okay, just as we always do, let’s get straight into the specifics and reveal what is this camera really capable of.

The most major change of this camera is the 26.2MP CMOS sensor, and if you compare it to the Canon 5D Mark III’s 22MP, the 6D Mark II is definitely a lot better. By this, the new sensor also brings a native sensitivity range of ISO100-40,000 which can be also expanded to ISO50-102,400, so if you noticed, this matches the expanded sensitivity range of the 5D Mark III.

What is also impressive is that the Canon 6D Mark II boasts Canon’s DIGIC 7 processing engine. Therefore, this means that it is capable of processing information 14 times faster than the previous DIGIC 6, while if you compare it to the 5D Mark III, the 6D Mark II also wins in this field since the 5D Mark III uses a DIGIC 5+ processing engine.

The viewfinder coverage is 98%, it has been improved in comparison to the original 6D, however, only by 1%. If you compare it to the 5D Mark III, it is still better, but it is not quite rivaling with other DSLRs at this price range, such as the D750 which has a viewfinder coverage of 100%.

Nonetheless, this is not the only improvement, the rear display has a 3.0-inch vari-angle display which can not only be pulled away from the body, but it is also touch-sensitive now, which is another advantage over the Canon 5D Mark II.

Connectivity options include three options, such as Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth. As you may already know, these are low-energy connections which means that you can always be connected to the camera to transfer images from the camera to a compatible smart device.

What I also like is the five-axis digital image stabilization which is made specifically for hand-held video recording. Thus, this system works in combination with Canon’s IS-equipped lenses, however, just as we mentioned, it is designed to work with videos and not stills.

Now, my only remark regarding this camera is that the manufacturer didn’t include 4K capabilities. When this camera was first introduced, I really hoped for 4K video shooting, instead, Canon limited the camera to Full HD with frame rates up to 60p.

However, there is a 4K timelapse option, but it’s not quite satisfying because it just stitches the images together into a 4k-resolution video. A microphone input is also included, although you won’t find any headphone socket in case you wish to monitor audio.

To conclude, the Canon 6D Mark II is definitely better than the 5D Mark III, not only in terms of construction and versatility but also because it has way more features than the 5D Mark III. As I mentioned during our introduction, features are what make a camera be special.

Canon 6D Mark II Sample Footage:

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Canon 5D Mark III vs Canon 6D Mark II Feature Comparison

  Canon 5D Mark III Canon 6D Mark II
Camera Type Full-Frame DSLR Full-Frame DSLR
Megapixels 22.3 26.2
ISO Range 100-25600(50-102,800) 100-40,000(50-102,400)
Flip-Out Screen No Yes
Microphone No No
Viewfinder Yes Yes
Touchscreen No Yes
Video Recording Yes Yes
Sensor Size CMOS CMOS

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As we reached the end of this article, by now, I think you already know which one of these cameras is better.

Personally, I think that the 6D Mark II has a lot more features than the 5D Mark III, while it is also better in terms of aesthetics, as well as in terms of specs.

Although, the Canon 5D delivers great value for the money and it’s the perfect camera for weddings, studios, and still photography, however, if you’re looking for a high-end full-frame DSLR camera, then the 6D Mark II is your answer.

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