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7DII vs 5DIV for birds/wildlife (1 Viewer)

Nick Leech

Well-known member
I have been using a 7D MkII (APS-C body) for birds/wildlife and a 6D (FF body) for general photography. I recently sold my 6D with a view to upgrading to a 5D MkIV.

I have recently been wondering whether to ditch the 7DII and just use a 5DIV for everything - then I can claw some cash back by selling the 7DII plus my APS-C lenses!

Conventional wisdom seems to be as follows:
The APS-C body (7DII) gives you more "reach" than a FF body (5DIV) for birds. I do understand that this is not "real reach" per se, but rather the effect of the reduced field of view on the APS-C body. So you don't need to crop your images as much with an APS-C body compared to a FF body - so you end up with better IQ on the final bird photograph with the APS-C body because there are more "pixels on the bird".

But things are not that simple because the 7DII and 5DIV have different models of sensor - not just different sized sensors. The 5DIV sensor has higher resolution than the 7DII sensor and different pixel size/density. Also, the two sensors have different ISO sensitivity and different noise characteristics.

Some things I have recently read online suggest that the 7DII does not have an advantage over the 5DIV for birds - the two are probably pretty equal, or maybe the 5DIV is even slightly better for birds, despite the need to crop your images more. Also, some folks think the 5DIV has a much better AF system than the 7DII.

See, for example, the thread on this forum here:

http://www.birdphotographers.net/forums/showthread.php/138645-Canon-7Dii-vs-5D-Mark-iv

What do people on BF think?

I am particularly interested in hearing from people who have used both the 7DII and the 5DIV for bird photography.


Thanks guys and gals!
 
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nc_killie

Well-known member
I have both the 7DmkII and 5D mkiv. I spent a SIGNIFICANT amount of time conremplating 5D mk IV against IDX but could not justify (nor afford) the difference. yes, I notice a difference in static subects, the 5D mk IV is much better, BIF not enough to determine. Higher ISO allows faster shutter speed which makes all the difference. I think that for BIF the biggest issue will be me and the camera is irrelevant!
Good luck
 

Malcolm Stewart

Well-known member
...

Conventional wisdom seems to be as follows:
The APS-C body (7DII) gives you more "reach" than a FF body (5DIV) for birds. I do understand that this is not "real reach" per se, but rather the effect of the reduced field of view on the APS-C body. So you don't need to crop your images as much with an APS-C body compared to a FF body - so you end up with better IQ on the final bird photograph with the APS-C body because there are more "pixels on the bird". ...

I put a spreadsheet together to deal with all of the variables, using the data published in standardised format by the reviews in DPR. For several years it listed the 7D MkII as being the body to aspire to, and eventually I did buy a 7D MkII and for bird photography, I'm well pleased. I have however realised that I'm getting too old to keep buying yet newer and better bodies, and I guess the 7D MkII will be my last "serious" body. I have an EF 500 F/4L IS (plus extenders) so I've got decent reach for wildfowl and the larger waders.
(The 7D Mk II in its UK version, includes a magnetic compass, and for many of my interests this is a real bonus.)
 

johnf3f

johnf3f
Just my thoughts.

I use the 1DX and 7D2 and this crop factor "Reach" business mostly evades me. True, under ideal conditions, the 7D2 will give more reach than my 1DX - but how often do we get "Ideal" conditions? My 7D2 is purely a backup and isn't used very often - it is a great camera but just not in the running against a 1DX 90% of the time.

I do not have much experience of the 5D4 but what I have is very positive. I rather like it! Much depends on your lenses and uses, but If you buy a 5D4 I cannot see you having much use for the 7D2. The small, and occasional, reach advantage that my 7D2 has over my (18mp) 1DX would be mostly nullified by the newer tech higher MP sensor of the 5D4.

So long as the highest frame rates and most responsive AF (with large lenses) are not too critical then (IMO) the 5D4 is the way to go. If they are then a used 1DX or, better still, a 1DX2 is the way to go. That latter option is a wee bit pricey though!
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
I would choose to have a 5D4 over a 7D2 but it comes at a price.If you are happy to pay it go for it!
I agree with John about the crop factor on the 7D2, not the 60% gain over a FF and certainly not against a 30mp one. I think the 5D4 would win easily on IQ.
All you need is a good tripod and head and a Mk2 600mm f4 and it's a match made in heaven.;););)
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
Following this thread with interest and today I've taken the plunge and swapped my 7Dmkii for a 5Dmkiv .

I don't think you'll regret it. The 5D4 has a lot of enviable features the 7D2 doesn't have nor for that matter the 1DX2 either. The only area it lags on is FPS but most of the time that doesn't matter anyway.
Out of interest can you use all the AF points with an F8 lens combination as you can the 1DX2?
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
The 5DMKIV mostly won't get as many pixels on the bird as a 7DMkII under ideal conditions, but likely given differences in sensor IQ and usual shooting conditions this mostly won't matter in practice.

I know that my Nikon D7200 visibly smokes a friend's 7DMkII for both IQ and resolution up to ISO800. Up to ISO1600 there is still a visible advantage, and by ISO3200 it's just pretty much down to the 24MP sensor's greater resolution. I have to say I love the Niki sensor, but I always look longingly at his lightweight 300mm f2.8L ISII + 2xTC which makes all the difference, and of course the Niki can't do those last few fps either.

I wish Canon and Nikon would sort themselves out with clearly dominant camera/lens combinations. I have no idea why Nikon hasn't lightened it's 300mm f2.8 over ~10 years and given it FL glass to be class leading, let alone come up with a 400mm f4 DO equivalent (or the soon due 600mm f4 DO version) - they must have lost a lot of business to Canon because of lenses.

Likewise the (semi)/pro Canon APS-C bodies have been sadly lacking in comparison to Nikon since the advent of the Nikon D7200. Hopefully the rumoured 7DMkIII body will not only catch up to Nikon's D500, but shift the game on substantially too .....

https://m.dpreview.com/news/6530448...ark-iii-before-summer-2018-heres-our-wishlist



Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
How do you explain that one Chosun?
Just in terms of resolution cropped versus pixel pitch, DR (even cropped - especially for good light and/or static subjects), and acknowledging that sometimes there is no need to crop (or zoom out say with the APS-C) in a portion of instances which may be upwards of ~ 20% of the time depending on shooting subject style/conditions/subjects etc which would hand the FF a clearer advantage (as others have commented on) is all.



Chosun :gh:
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
Just in terms of resolution cropped versus pixel pitch, DR (even cropped - especially for good light and/or static subjects), and acknowledging that sometimes there is no need to crop (or zoom out say with the APS-C) in a portion of instances which may be upwards of ~ 20% of the time depending on shooting subject style/conditions/subjects etc which would hand the FF a clearer advantage (as others have commented on) is all.



Chosun :gh:

A lot of variables but surely it mostly depends on the distance to and size of your subject and the lens you are using.
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
A lot of variables but surely it mostly depends on the distance to and size of your subject and the lens you are using.
I was assuming all things being equal - but I do think that physical distance to the subject is perhaps one of the biggest factors in getting decent IQ for a variety of factors - atmospheric, vibration geometry etc .... it's something I now try and concentrate on wherever possible .... :t:



Chosun :gh:
 

Nick Leech

Well-known member
Does anybody else have any views on 7D2 vs 5D4 for bird photography? (say when using a Canon 100-400 v2)

Is there really a "pseudo extra reach" advantage with the APS-C body? - ie is it worth retaining the 7D2 for birds and using the 5D4 for everything else (landscapes, people/portraits, architecture, holidays/travel etc).

Or will a highly cropped bird photo from the 5D4 be as good as a slightly less cropped photo from the 7D2 (printed so that the bird is the same size on both prints)?
 
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James Eaton

Trent Valley Crew
Does anybody else have any views on 7D2 vs 5D4 for bird photography? (say when using a Canon 100-400 v2)

Is there really a "pseudo extra reach" advantage with the APS-C body? - ie is it worth retaining the 7D2 for birds and using the 5D4 for everything else (landscapes, people/portraits, architecture, holidays/travel etc).

Or will a highly cropped bird photo from the 5D4 be as good as a slightly less cropped photo from the 7D2 (printed so that the bird is the same size on both prints)?

Nick, I have the 7D2, I found it nice apart from the dreadful noise levels, so I also purchased a 5D4, but I found the camera quite slow, particualrly the FPS, and having always used crop-factor DSLRs previously, I struggled with accepting the 5D4 to the point I sold it and carried on with the 7D2. I found the 5D4 a lovely camera otherwise, I used it a lot more for general photography.

James
 

NSNO

Member
Does anybody else have any views on 7D2 vs 5D4 for bird photography? (say when using a Canon 100-400 v2)

Is there really a "pseudo extra reach" advantage with the APS-C body? - ie is it worth retaining the 7D2 for birds and using the 5D4 for everything else (landscapes, people/portraits, architecture, holidays/travel etc).

Or will a highly cropped bird photo from the 5D4 be as good as a slightly less cropped photo from the 7D2 (printed so that the bird is the same size on both prints)?

I've gone from using the 7DII to the 5DIV and definitely won't be going back.
Worth it for me just to have the better low light performance and increased detail it captures.
I do mostly perched birds though and am fortunate enough to not be reach limited - I use it with a 600 F4 and 1.4x TC.
The only way you'll know if it's right for you is to try it, rent one for a weekend and see how you go.
 

djg

Member
Excellent thread; thanks for posting. I too was curious about the same think.
I am not an experienced birder and am out of my league here on this forum.
I'm currently using a T2i (don't laugh) with a 400 5.6L lens. The noise is lousy at ISO 800. So I've considered
upgrading to a 7DMkii once the Mkiii comes out. A friend got a deal on the 5DMkiv so I was wonder about the IQ question posted here.
 

djg

Member
Nick, I have the 7D2, I found it nice apart from the dreadful noise levels, ........

James
How bad is the noise level? With my camera, 800 ISO is noisy. I'm using a 400L f5.6 (Non IS) so I've got to get my shutter up around 1000 for BIF. A better (f4) lens is out of the question so I thought a camera upgrade (7Dii) would be the solution.
 

pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
Excellent thread; thanks for posting. I too was curious about the same think.
I am not an experienced birder and am out of my league here on this forum.
I'm currently using a T2i (don't laugh) with a 400 5.6L lens. The noise is lousy at ISO 800. So I've considered
upgrading to a 7DMkii once the Mkiii comes out. A friend got a deal on the 5DMkiv so I was wonder about the IQ question posted here.

I don’t have personal experience with the 80D but I believe some camera sites rank the sensor as better than the 7D2. Autofocus is not as good, obviously. I am certain others here know more about this issue and hopefully someone will chime in.
 

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