Photography News Issue 47

Photography News | Issue 47 | photographynews.co.uk

Camera test 34

Performance: exposure latitude

-4EV

-1EV

+2EV

Original image

-3EV

0

+3EV

To check howmuch exposure latitude was available in the EOS 6D Mark II’s Raws, a sunlit scene was shot in manual exposuremode.AnEvaluative meter reading in manual mode gave a base exposure of 1/500sec at f/8 and ISO 100. The scene was then manually bracketed. The Raws were then processed and corrected through Adobe Lightroom. As is often the case, tolerance to underexposure was better than overexposure. At -4EV, images gained quite a lot of noise that is noticeable in areas of even tone, but if you can accept that, the images look okay with no colour shift. From this good

start, image quality and noise levels improved as underexposure got less. With overexposure, the +4EV shot was beyond redemption which is no surprise and highlights looked very poor. But matters improved quickly and the +3EV shot recovered well but there was a slight shift in colour and the brightest highlights remained detailless. Comparable quality to the correct exposure was then attained from+2EVonwards. In summary, the EOS 6D Mark II’s Raws have good latitude, with shots from -3EV to +2EV offering the ability to full recovery giving quality comparable to correctly exposed shots.

+1EV

+4EV

-2EV

Above A brightly-lit Old Royal Naval College at Greenwich proved to be a great and challenging subject for an exposure latitude test. The four stop exposure bracket was shot in manual exposure mode and then the images recovered in Lightroom.

With live view AF, the EOS 6D Mark II utilises Canon’s Dual Pixel AF where each pixel is made up of two photo diodes that work separately for better AF. Live view AF has 63 zones laid out in a 9x7 grid giving coverage of 80% of the image area. You can focus anywhere within this 80% area. The live view AF system works effectively in its face+tracking mode and if you have a person walking across the frame the camera latches on quickly. This mode is not so good with general scenes where the camera did not always accurately latch onto what was the correct subject and needed some help in the form of a finger on the touchscreen. Live view AF has the option of smooth zone focusing and here you get a smaller working area of nine AF points – equivalent to around 11% of the total sensor area. The active zone can be selected seamlessly, very quickly, by touch or with the multi-way control which is slower. Left The EOS 6DMark II’s Evaluative metering system proved consistently accurate, as this high contrast scene demonstrates. This straight-out- of-camera JPEG has detail in the highlights and shadows. This aperture-priority AE exposure was 1/200sec at f/9 without any compensation applied.

If you prefer a more specific AF area in live view, you can opt for single point AF which is roughly equal to 1.2% of the sensor area. Again the active sensor can be moved seamlessly across the 80% working area of Dual Pixel CMOS AF. The EOS 6D Mark II’s AF system has got a great deal going for it and it worked well during my test, especially with the more specific focusing options. The wider face+tracking AF in live view or auto AF selection via the viewfinder was not so dependable with scenes with a mix of far and near elements. Also, I felt the working area of 45 zones was on the small size – it occupies less than 50% of the horizontal axis and about one third of the vertical. With CSCs offering AF across a very large portion of the viewfinder, this is less impressive. The camera’s exposure system proved very dependable. I used the camera mostly in aperture- priority AE mode with Evaluative measurement and I consistently got very good Raws that needed little editing in terms of exposure correction. Looking at the straight out of the camera JPEGs that were shot simultaneously confirmed the system’s accuracy and consistency. To sum up, I enjoyed using the EOS 6D Mark II. It produces high-quality images consistently and isn’t too big considering it is a full-frame model. Set the camera up to suit the way you like to work and it’ll no doubt deliver sterling service for many years.

Verdict

Features New sensor with wide ISO range, Dual Pixel AF and vari-anglemonitor Handling 24/25 Slick, intuitive, responsive – as you would expect from a Canon DSLR Performance 22/25 Exposure and AF pretty sound and it can shoot at 6.5fps Value formoney 23/25 Tempting price for a good-spec full-frame DSLR Lots to enjoy and appreciate on Canon’s latest full-frame and a decent all-round performer Pros Compact for a full-frame DSLR, 6.5fps, vari-angle monitor Cons Just one SD slot, a wider AF area In the viewfinder would be nice Overall 92/100 Some existing EOS 6D usersmight be contemplating updating their camera to theMark II and that is worth serious consideration. A significantlymore responsive AF, faster continuous shooting and havingmoremegapixels under the bonnet are serious attractions. Those same headline features make the Canon EOS 6DMark II a tempting proposition towould-be full-frame users too. Image quality from the 26-megapixel sensor is very good and gives critical performance even at the higher ISO settings. 23/25

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