• BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE!

    You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Canon 7dmk2 or canon 5dmk3 (1 Viewer)

Retrodaz

Well-known member
I've been planning to get the canon 7dmk2, but I've been wondering if the canon 5d mk3 would be better. Do people prefer full frame or crop for bird photography. I've only ever used crop, but understand you can crop better on full frames. I can't afford a 500mm prime, so thought I would get a tamaron or sigma 150-600 and put the rest into a decent grey body.
 

johnf3f

johnf3f
Depending on your budget I would go for as good a lens as you can get before worrying about the camera. Certainly models like the 7D2/5D3/1DX etc will give you significant advantages but none can be better than the glass that is in front of them.
Whilst you may find the price of a Canon 500mm prime a bit daunting you can pick up a Canon 600mm prime for less. The 600 is less popular, due to the extra weight, but far better for the sort of birding I do (smaller species), the 800mm is even better!

Just a personal view but I feel that the IQ advantages of a full frame camera (such as the 5D3/1DX) outweigh the extra reach of the smaller apsc sensors. The extra reach of APSC can be useful but don't get the idea that it will turn a 500mm lens into an 800mm lens, which is what the crop factor would suggest. The effective extra reach is somewhat less - though it is a matter of debate as to how much less! My guess would be about a ratio of 1 to 1.2 (FF to Apsc) - useful but not a deal breaker. Against that there is the improved IQ of larger sensors (generally) and the (normally) better high ISO performance. I am in no way decrying cameras like the 7D2 (far from it!) I just find that I prefer what I can get from larger sensors.
Happy deciding!
 

jimthomson

Well-known member
The frame rate of the 7D2 makes it much better for birds in flight. 7D2 with 400mm f5.6 will give you better image quality than 5D3 with a 150-600. You can shoot the 400 wide open but with the Tamron and Sigma C you need to stop down to F8 for best image quality which significantly reduces the 5D3's ISO advantage. The Sigma S may be different but I haven't tried it.
You will miss the reach using a full frame camera. I rarely use my 5D3 for birds since I got the 7D2.

I do agree that a 500 or 600 prime is the way to go for image quality no matter what camera you chose. But they are in a different league price wise.
 
Last edited:

Robert_Scanlon

Well-known member
I picked up a canon 600 f4 is usm so the body will have to wait :)

I have a EOS 40D as a back up to my 1D mk 4, and though things have moved on a bit since it came out, it's still capable of producing some great images, and they go for peanuts on ebay, relatively. I like mine better than the mk 1 7D that I once had, personally.

Congrats on getting the 600mm, it and the mk 2 are the ultimate birding lenses imo.

If you haven't already, it's worth reading up on a few internet articles on long lens technique, as many people don't realise how critical it can be.
 

Retrodaz

Well-known member
Thanks Robert. I got a great deL on andy's and as it was complete with a lot of extras I went for it. I'm glad I did too as I'm really struggling with the weight of it. It's chucking it down with rain, so hopefully it will clear up for the weekend.
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
Thanks Robert. I got a great deL on andy's and as it was complete with a lot of extras I went for it. I'm glad I did too as I'm really struggling with the weight of it. It's chucking it down with rain, so hopefully it will clear up for the weekend.

Didn't you get a fitness trainer thrown in too!
 

Colin

Axeman (Retired)
England
Didn't you get a fitness trainer thrown in too!

Or, a golf caddy type person.

Just imagine going out on a photo shoot and with the caddy carrying all the kit. Then when you see a potential shot, you ask the caddy for the 7d2 with the 600 on with the 1.4 converter and he/she suggests that at only 35 feet it would be better without the converter but if you crept behind that tree at 20 feet away, you could get away with the 300 lens on the 7d2 or the 300 with the 1.4 on the 5d3 and if you took the shot from a standing position, the shimmer of the hot ground would not have any effect on the focussing but would if you shot from a prone position. When you have conceded that the caddy is right when he/she says that the 7d2 and the 300 without the converter is ideal and he/she had put the correct lens on the body, the subject has gone!!! ;)
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
Or, a golf caddy type person.

Just imagine going out on a photo shoot and with the caddy carrying all the kit. Then when you see a potential shot, you ask the caddy for the 7d2 with the 600 on with the 1.4 converter and he/she suggests that at only 35 feet it would be better without the converter but if you crept behind that tree at 20 feet away, you could get away with the 300 lens on the 7d2 or the 300 with the 1.4 on the 5d3 and if you took the shot from a standing position, the shimmer of the hot ground would not have any effect on the focussing but would if you shot from a prone position. When you have conceded that the caddy is right when he/she says that the 7d2 and the 300 without the converter is ideal and he/she had put the correct lens on the body, the subject has gone!!! ;)

Yes but when the subject is unapproachable the 600mm wins every time.
I wish we had some heat haze to have to cope with.
 

Retrodaz

Well-known member
I think people will also justify the lenses they're purchased, it's common nature.
I must admit I had a bit of a rude awakening the first time I used it in the field, but I'm hoping that once I start heading back to hides and doing more pond walk (I'll keep my 400 f5.6 for walking over hengistbury head) I'll start reaping the benefits more. Otherwise I possibly downgrade to the 500, but that's not really something I want to consider.
 

johnf3f

johnf3f
I think people will also justify the lenses they're purchased, it's common nature.
I must admit I had a bit of a rude awakening the first time I used it in the field, but I'm hoping that once I start heading back to hides and doing more pond walk (I'll keep my 400 f5.6 for walking over hengistbury head) I'll start reaping the benefits more. Otherwise I possibly downgrade to the 500, but that's not really something I want to consider.

Or go for the 800! It's lighter than the 600 and you can hand hold it all day in the arctic in winter;)
As to justifying lenses, why bother, if anyone questions your purchase of a 600mm they either know nothing about them or are jealous. Either way who cares what they think. Anybody on a reasonable income can have these lenses so long as they know how to run their finances, it's just up to them!
 

Retrodaz

Well-known member
I do find it ironic that the weather is now terrible. Hopefully the rain will stop for my trip to Wales this weekend.
 

johnf3f

johnf3f
Good luck! The weather isn't looking great here for the weekend but the conditions can change quickly so hope for the best!
 

Retrodaz

Well-known member
I'm still dithering over this. I like the speed of the original 7d that I currently use but I find its ISO weak. The 7d mk2 sounds like it would be most useful, but virtually every combo I see with a 600mm lens uses a 5d mk3 or similar.
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
I'm still dithering over this. I like the speed of the original 7d that I currently use but I find its ISO weak. The 7d mk2 sounds like it would be most useful, but virtually every combo I see with a 600mm lens uses a 5d mk3 or similar.

I can only give you half the answer. I've had a 7D2 most of 2015 and I love it, its AF and ISO performance are both much better than the 7D I had previously, and at 10fps I generally get that exact moment in the behaviour that I want to freeze. I usually have a 500f4 on the front, often with a 1.4, and its the Mk1 lens so it weighs a good bit. I carry it everywhere. Saves on gym membership.....

Never tried the 5d3 and I know many of those who have swear by it. I think you might want to do something one way or the other soon though! :t:

John
 

robinsslee

Well-known member
The only two things I find missing on my 5D3 is the FPS and buffer rate... in which 7D2 excel on this area.

I've rented 7D2 for a week and found the camera is very good, the files are good to work with! Extra reach helped on the small subjects. But the 5D3 being FF sensor, the files are just too good on it.

Either way you will never go wrong.
 

Dave Williams

Well-known member
I think you are wrong if you are under the impression that everyone with a 600mm uses an FX body as I have seen as many using one as don't!
I have a 5d3 and a 1DX and I use the latter all the time because the fps rate when needed is just not fast enough with the 5D3 so if you want to freeze the action, you have a greater chance of getting it with the 7D2.
My preferred method of shooting is manual for everything except ISO for which I use auto. I then apply EV which is a setting only the 1DX and 7D2 allow. Another reason my 5D3 gets less use.
If I didn't own a 5D3 I would have a 7D2 as my back up. I did trial one very briefly and I was impressed .
I'm not sure what features the 5D3 has that the 7D2 doesn't, HDR maybe ? Then of course low light capabilities that exceed the 7D2.
When it comes to buying one new, the 7D2 is nearly half the price of a 5D3 so to me if the cost was an issue I would certainly choose a 7D2. At around £800 it's a bargain!
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top