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photography is an old profession/pastime, older than most of probably realise- and photography, like painting is based on a relationship between photographer and subject; a sitter for a portrait, a landscape, an interesting event- a nice sunset photographed on a 5d, or a 5d3 or painted with a brush will all have the same effect when seen on a gallery wall, the difference between the 5d and the 5d3 isn't really that much at all in most photographic situations.
Where the 5d excels is in price- for under £500 you get full frame, where it doesn't excel is technology, if you're a gadget freak look away now, if you're used to shooting on film then the lack of technology won't bother you.
The AF system is simple, and primitively so- the AF points are clustered around the centre, never venturing far enough out to allow you to create a pleasing composition- learn to focus and recompose but beware the depth of field when shooting wide open.
Checking your images is the one real downside to these older cameras, it's slow, and the low screen res means that you can't check critical sharpness until you're at home, take more pictures and expect that half of them won't be in focus.
Obviously there's no live view, and no video- neither are deal breakers but live view can be useful for product photography, studio photography and landscapes- if your eyes are good then you'll learn to make use of the fantastic huge and bright viewfinder, this isn't the 550d you might be getting if you bought a new camera at this price.
ISO tops out at 1600, which to be honest is a little low, my other camera goes to 6400 and i'm frequently shooting it even with f2.8 lenses. The 5d pairs well with f2 primes.
Shoot the 5d like a film camera, methodically, carefully, slowly. Try to shoot it quickly and you'll be left wanting your modern creature comforts.
if you want a camera to document life and want the camera to do it for you this probably isn't for you, but if you want to take great pictures or landscapes, people who want you to take their picture, and not get distracted by video, photographing candid moments, or birds in flight, then this camera will fit the bill.
Released in 2005, the Canon 5D is now primarily used as my backup camera (the Mk II is my primary). This was a revolutionary camera upon it's release, becoming the first full frame sensor (35mm) SLR camera to be released with a compact body (far easier to handle than the bulky 1DS or similar).
While the Mk II (released in 2009) certainly improved upon it's predecessor, the 5D is still a very solid camera. I'm a professional photographer & shot exclusively with this camera for my first 2 years as a pro. It still fits the bill as a backup camera & can be called upon when necessary.
It is a 12.8m megapixel camera, while bettered since, in 2005 this was rather more impressive than it appears today.
The camera has 9 point TTL focusing & 6 invisible auto-focus points, enabling you to obtain impressive results easily. The usual Metering systems are present - Evaluative, Spot, Partial & Centre Weighted, features such as this may seem trivial now, but once you expand your knowledge you will find yourself using them more & more.
The 5D comes with a range of 'professional' settings such as fully Manual, Aperture Priority & Shutter Priority, while also offering Fully Automatic modes & some more standard 'picture styles' such as 'portrait' & 'landscape'.
I personally never found the 2.5" LCD screen on the rear to be particularly accurate, I found it could deceive you into thinking you had a better quality picture than the reality. The Mk II has a much sharper screen. Like with previous Canon SLR's you can shoot in JPEG, RAW formats or both simultaneously.
It does not feature an in-built flash, so bear that in mind when purchasing. The 5D is considered a semi-pro camera but was & is used by a lot of professionals within the industry, partly due to it's manageable size.
The ISO settings are dated now & offer quite high digital noise when compared with what has come onto the marketplace since, in addition the megapixel count is also arguably insufficient compared to other cameras on the market. However now available for around £750, making it well under half the price of the superior 5D Mk II, making this camera an attractive proposition to some.
While revolutionary upon it's release in 2005, this camera has been bettered since, however at the price it's now available, it's still a worthwhile camera to the right user.
I updated to the Canon 5D from the Canon 450. I have to say I have mixed feelings about this camera. Clearly, the image results are fantastic - and the sensitivity of the sensor is good enough for very professional results. I have blown images up to A3 size and the image has remained crisp and detailed. It is built to be used - and by this I mean that you can bash it and drop it and its so robust that you won't do it any damage! Its compatible with EF lenses - I have to say that I've got my best results when I've combined this camera with my Canon 70-200mm lens - which proved ideal for safari and my trip to the Galapagos. The battery life is great (I only have to charge it up 3 times for a one month holiday). Its a bonus that you can shoot in both JPEG and RAW (although RAW takes up a lot of room on the card).
However, I do find it to be quite bulky and heavy. I know that as far as DSLR's go, 850g isn't too bad - but combine this with a big lens and its pretty heavy! I also find it is a bit of a hindrance not having a built in flash with this camera because sometimes it would be nice to just point and shoot without having to carry around a extra flash gun for night shots.
All in all, I would recommend this camera for the serious amateur or professional who can't afford the Mark II. Its served me well!
Just wow. What a camera.
I bought this a year ago as an upgrade to my previous entry level 350D. I had started getting paid for my photography and so decided that I needed something more reliable to take me across that daunting gap between amateur and professional.
This was really the cheapest option available to me, I grabbed a bargain at just over £1000 for just the body only. What a step up it was from my previous camera.
The images just scream quality. The bigger full frame sensor not only means that you can shoot true 35mm wide angle, but also means that the interference from nearby light receptors on the sensor is far less instrusive than on lower grade cameras with smaller sensors. There is less CA when compared like for like with the 350D and the same lenses.
For shooting stock, this camera is great. The exceptional quality at lowish ISO's means that images can be interpolated up with east to suit the needs of most modern photolibraries.
I also shoot alot of music gigs, and the low level light performance is great. You still get easily usable images at ISO3200, although this is an area where the new MkII apparently beats this version hands down - however the new version does cost twice as much!
Another advantage to this camera is it's relatively small size. Being a small female I often find it hard to get my hands around the ergonomics of the camera which is my main reason for staying away from Nikons. This camera is perfectly suited for me in this respect, and of course for larger hands you can add the optional battery grip.
Simply put, I wouldn't change it for the world.
The Canon EOS 5D is bridges the gap between consumer and professional DSLR cameras. Its price reflects this, retailing at around 1500GBP for the body. As a kit, it is offered with the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4.0L IS USM lens for around 2000GBP. (It is probably worth declairing at this point that I am on the consumer side of the fence, and so this review will be most useful for consumers, not professionals.)
The headline feature of the 5D is the 'full frame' digital sensor. Most digital cameras have a sensor that is smaller in area than a 35mm negative. This leads to a focal length multiplication factor that is greater than one. For example, the Canon EOS 30D has a 22.5x15.0mm sensor giving a 1.6x focal length factor. The EOS 5D full frame sensor is the same size as a 35mm negative at 35.8x23.9mm. This gives a 1.0x focal length factor. Of course, the larger sensor size provides room for more pixels, however, there is a real optical advantage to a larger sensor. A larger sensor gives a greater depth of field. If you want to quantify what the difference is, visit http://www.lensplay.com where you can find a depth-of-field calculator.
Now, back the the EOS 5D itself. On contact with it, the first impression is that it is large and heavy. There is no doubting that. Using my kitchen scales, the body and lens weigh in at a hefty 1.65kg (including the battery pack). Be prepared for it. However, as soon as your hands slide into place -- right hand on the camera grip and left hand on the lens zoom ring -- the feeling is so natural that the weight becomes irrelivant. The ergonomics of the camera are so close to perfect that it becomes a wieldy and precise camera. I've used it to shoot continuously at three frames per second while tracking my daughter running around irratically. I found it a much better tool for this than any other camera I have used.
The camera has a very large array of modes and features to allow you to get your pictures right (I will not list them here). However, do not overlook its excellent 'fully automatic' mode, which makes it an extraordinarily accomplished point-and-click camera. Anyone buying the EOS 5D will, no doubt, be intending to use those extra modes and features -- and here it gets really impressive. The controls are unbelievably easy and intuitive to use. The majority of settings that effect shooting can be altered using fingertip controls without moving your hands. Press a button, twist a wheel: the ISO is changed. Press a button, twist a wheel: the white balance is changed. And so it goes on.
The one drawback for the consumer user is that there is no integral 'pop-up' flash. This means that the further expense of a flashgun is required for indoor shooting -- unless you want to keep telling your granny to sit still. It also means the further weight of a flashgun ontop of an already hefty camera. Again, when taking photos the weight remains irrelevant, but, when hanging it around your neck, you now have 2kg of dead weight. Enough to give a child a very nasty clout on the head if you bend towards them.
Here, I really wanted to concentrate on the 'user experience' of taking photos. I do not consider myself qualified to comment fully on the end results. So, in terms of the quality of photographs you can take, all I will say here is that with the EOS 5D you can take very good photos with relatively little effort (or no effort with the fully automatic mode). Put in a bit of effort and you will contually astound yourself with the results -- or even compete with the professionals.
One final note: the lens assumed here is the EF 24-105mm f/4.0L IS USM. For this camera, this is a good choice if you are starting with only a single lens as it ranges from slightly wide to mid telephoto. However, there is, of course, a whole range of Canon and compatible lenses to consider. From the Canon range it would be best to stick to the professional quality 'L' series lenses. Amongst them, the f/1.2 lenses are considered the bees-knees for portrait photography.