Photography News 05


Camera review

Canon EOS 6D

Canon EOS 5D Mark III



PRICE £2329 body only CONTACT SENSOR 22.3 megapixels

PRICE £1379 body only CONTACT SENSOR 20.2 megapixels

with DIGIC 5+ AUTOFOCUS 61 AF points SHOOTINGSPEEDS 6fps ISORANGE 50-102,400 (extended)

with DIGIC 5+ AUTOFOCUS 11 AF points SHOOTINGSPEEDS 4.5fps ISORANGE 50-102,400 (extended)

advantage of this is dual memory card slots, one for SD and one for CompactFlash. On the back, there’s a control stick for navigation and selection, as well as a control wheel and top command dial. Most shooting settings are accessed by dual function buttons on the top and within reach of your shutter finger at all times. An M-Fn button between the shutter button and command dial is a quick way to change between AF options, although can also be assigned to other functions. The mode dial doesn’t turn continuously so you have to go back and forth between modes – a small thing, but a niggle. Some might have preferred the on/off button to be on the right as well, rather than as it is on the left shoulder under the mode dial.

The EOS 5D Mark III is Canon’s highest resolution camera available, but its 22.3 megapixels are fewer than the cheaper Nikon D610, and a long way short of Nikon’s ‘equivalent’ camera, the D800. Its secret weapon is its focusing system, which is far more advanced than anything else in this class. It’s essentially the same as the system in the EOS-1D X, which is built for action, with 61 AF points and a plethora of set- up options. This is backed up by a top shooting speed of six frames-per-second, as fast as you’ll get from a full-frame camera at this price. Handling of the EOS 5D Mark III is excellent too. It’s big – similar in dimensions to the D800 but slightly lighter, and curvier. It’s much less portable than the EOS 6D, although one big

and no tracking modes – for comparison, the similarly-priced Nikon D610 has 39 AF points with 3D tracking. If fast-moving subjects are your passion, then it probably won’t do, but for landscapes, for example, it’s plenty. The trade-off comes in the ISO sensitivity range, where it matches the EOS 5D Mark III with a maximum ISO 102,400, one stop down from the Nikon Df and D4. It’s also the only full- frame DSLR with in-built Wi-Fi and GPS. There’s just one SD card slot, so no extra capacity or backup. There’s also no PC flash sync socket. This won’t trouble you unless you want to use a cable to sync your flash units – without a pop-up flash that can be used as a remote commander, your only option is to buy a remote wireless trigger or an adaptor.

The EOS 6D is barely bigger than Canon’s latest APS-C format DSLRs, yet its image quality nearly equals that of the EOS 5D Mark III. The sensor isn’t the same, slightly behind at 20.2 megapixels, although this makes little difference to image size. Despite the small body, handling of the EOS 6D is excellent. There’s a command dial on top and control wheel on the back, while a row of buttons by the top LCD puts all basic shooting functions within reach of your shutter finger. Shooting controls on the back are all on the right too, making it easy to change settings with the camera in shooting hold or with the viewfinder to your eye. The focusing system of the EOS 6D is relatively simplistic, with only 11 AF points





PRICE £2049 body only CONTACT SENSOR 36.3 megapixels with EXPEED 3 AUTOFOCUS 51 AF points SHOOTINGSPEEDS 4fps ISORANGE 50-25,600 (extended)

PRICE £1499 body only CONTACT SENSOR 24.3 megapixels with EXPEED 3 AUTOFOCUS 39 AF points SHOOTINGSPEEDS 6fps ISORANGE 50-25,600 (extended)

six with the battery grip. Resolution drops, but still holds up at 15.4 megapixels. If you want this speed, you’re probably shooting sport or similar anyway, where the extra focal length of the DX crop mode is of benefit too. For any Nikon user, the controls will be instantly intuitive – there’s no mode dial, but instead direct access buttons on the left shoulder. The body is a lot chunkier than the D610 or Df, and at 1kg, it’s the heaviest full-frame model around except for the D4 and EOS-1D X. While the other Nikon full-frame cameras take SD cards, the D800 has one SD slot and one CompactFlash slot. With such big files (one uncompressed 14-bit Raw file measures around 76MB), the larger available capacities of CF cards could be useful.

The NikonD800 raised full-frame photography to a different level of resolution, and nearly two years after its launch, no other DSLR rivals this – only the mirrorless Sony A7R can match it. But resolution isn’t all the D800 offers. It has the same 51-point AF system as the flagship D4, including dynamic area and 3D tracking modes. It’s arguably not as advanced as the system in the Canon EOS 5DMark III, but still more advanced than the rest of the field. It struggles for pure speed: at full resolution it can manage just four frames-per-second. This is the lowest speed of all the full-frame DSLRs, purely down to the amount of information in each frame. There’s a workaround too – using the D800 in DX crop mode, the top speed increases to five frames-per-second or even

if you’re after a more portable Nikon, the Df weighs less. Unlike the Canon EOS 6D, the D610 provides dual SD card slots, and there’s a pop- up flash that can act as a wireless commander for off-camera Speedlights. The D610 doesn’t have in-built Wi-Fi, although with an adaptor this can be added. A viewfinder with a 100% field of view is another bonus. If you’re looking to step up from an APS-C model, then the DX crop mode on the D610 is another advantage because it lets youuse your existing APS-C lenses without vignetting, albeit with a drop in resolution to 10.3 megapixels. In this mode, the AF points cover nearly the entire frame, and you get the extra focal length for sports or nature photography.

The Nikon D610 is a tasty prospect for all- round performance and value. Its price puts it in direct competition with Canon’s EOS 6D, but inmany respects it’s more advanced. Its AF system eclipses Canon’s 11-point offering and provides 39 AF points with a variety of modes that make it much better suited to sports and action. Its top continuous shooting rate of six frames-per-second matches the EOS 5D Mark III’s, making it an excellent, more affordable alternative for any kind of action. Handling is excellent on the whole. Some shooting settings, such as ISO and white- balance are to the left of the LCD, which may not suit everyone but will be familiar to any Nikon user. The body is much more compact than the D800, and it’s 150g lighter, although

Photography News | Issue 5

Powered by