Saturday, February 14, 2009

DPReview finally posts a 5D Mark II Review

5DM2 copy

The 5D Mark II picture in this article is copyright 2008 - Digital Photography Review

It sure took them long enough, but the best camera review site on the web - DPReview.com - FINALLY posted an in-depth review of the 5D Mark II.
The Verdict? Well, it seems they are quite pleased with this camera giving it a 9.5 for image quality and basically stating it is the best you can get out there for full-frame or less format camera.

Comparisions

The review compares it against the original 5D, 1Ds-Mark III, Nikon D700 and Sony Alpha A900.
Versus the Original 5D
Against the original 5D where the analysis is that the original 5D was sharper per pixel, but that the extra pixels and post-process sharpening can yeild results as good as the original 5D. This is good news for 5D owners who don't have the funds to upgrade at this time.
Versus the 1Ds-Mark III
Despite the fact that 5D Mark II and 1Ds Mark III cameras both have the same sensor, it is clear that Digic IV must make a difference as the 5D Mark II clearly beats out its more expensive sibling. The net result is that unless you need the features or weather sealing offered in the 1Ds-Mark III, you have nothing to lose (besides cash) with purchasing a 5D Mark II.
Versus the Nikon D700
The D700 is realistically the closest competitor to the 5D Mark II, but with much less pixels it highlights what Canon has accomplished with their new body. The D700 fairs well and produces similar results, but given its cost and lack of features then D700 shouldn't be too attractive to photographers who have already made an investment in Canon lenses. It's superior focus and burst mode would be appealing if a full-frame sports camera was needed, so there's still a place for this camera - especially given the cost of its amazing sibling - the D3.
Versus the Alpha A900
Boys and girls, let this be a lesson to you that it isn't always about who has the most megapixels. The net result here is that the A900 offers the worst picture quality of the bunch here and its lack of lenses and heritage make it a choice only for those who have a grudge against Nikon and Canon. If that is you, then here's another Sony product you should buy (WARNING: Contains explicit language).

Conclusion

This still appears to be "the" camera to have if you are in the Canon camp, but Nikon's D700 & D3 should keep their followers loyal. This camera should help slow the bleed from Canon a little bit, but they'll need new pro versions soon which should piss off their loyal customers enough that people may still feel compelled to switch camps. I've been very pleased with my 5D Mark II and I no longer yearn to switch camps thanks to this great body, but my 1D Mark III experience still leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. Hopefully Canon will do something to help with the upgrade experience, but given the strength of the Yen against the Dollar, I'm not expecting much. For those on the sidelines with insufficient funds, it seems that the original 5D is a great buy given how well it has held up with the latest high-end cameras, so you can take advantage of the flood of 5D's on the used market and at retailers dumping inventory to get a great deal on an excellent camera. Click here for my 5D Mark II review, and go here to see some great images being created with this camera by real people like you.

The lines are shorter, time to go get one now...

If you've been on the fence about upgrading, fear not your wait is over. The backorder situation has improved so that waits are typically under a aweek or two. This is THE camera to own if you have an investment in Canon lenses, and Adorama (where I purchased mine) was the only online place I've seen that is consistently taking (and filling) orders:

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