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Second camera body - R7 or 5d mk4?? (1 Viewer)


New member
United Kingdom
I have a camera kit conundrum for an upcoming trip to Svalbard.

I'm looking for a second camera body, I currently have a 7d mk ii, a sigma 150-600 and a 24-104 L lens.

Do I go for:

A) a full frame dslr 5d mk iv
B) an R7?

More reach and more pixels from an R7, or better low light and full frame? I really can't decide.

I'll struggle to upgrade to RF glass l, so I'll be sticking with the current lens for both options.

What would people recommend?
First off, congrats on your upcoming trip. My wife and I are in the early stages of planning an adventure cruise up there in the next few years. I hope to see some of your pics.

I own/have owned the following: R7, 70D, 6D, Sigma 150-500, Sigma 500 4.5 EX, Canon 17-40. Obviously I don't have the same stuff as you, but I do own the R7, and the other pieces are similar enough for comparison.

IMO, having more reach is a frame of mind. 600mm on a 7D2 is pretty darned good. You will always dream of more reach than you have, so of course it's nice to think of. I do think the R7 would improve the the "reach" slightly with more pixel density and amazing autofocus. But I don't think the difference will be as great as you want. You'd probably get better reach by upgrading to a 600 F4 lens, but I understand the cost and luggage hassle, so I only say that to make a point, not an actual suggestion. The 150-600 is already a great travel lens. I took my 150-500 to Alaska years ago and shot with a 1D (ver 1) with only 4.1 mp. The pics I got are still some of my favorite wildlife shots of the past 15 years. And that's an equivalent 650mm vs your current 960mm. Beyond 1000mm you're already getting into atmospheric distortion territory, especially with larger animals like seals and polar bears. I bet the 7D2 and 150-600 will do you just fine on the long end.

This leads to the next issue. I've read on forums repeatedly that the current Sigma and Tamron superzooms can struggle with autofocusing on the RF mount. My 150-500 and 500 4.5 both had HSM and definitely didn't play well with the RF autofocusing system. Even though they were older lenses, my experience matches what I've read about pulsing issues with the R5, R6 and R7 on the newer 150-600 glass. That's why I ultimately sold them and bought an old 400 DO, because even the older Canon glass behaves predictably with the RF mount.

If I was in your situation, looking to extend my kit with a second body, I would think the 5D4 is the way to go. I have the little sibling 6D and it's awesome. You'll probably use your 7D2/150-600 most of the time. Slap the 24-105 on a FF for a perfect dual camera kit that covers all your bases. Then flip the lenses to modify the focal length range if you need to, and literally eliminate the gap between 105mm and 240mm (150mm x 1.6). I bet the 150-600 would be amazing on a FF. That way you get some nice flexibility for different shooting situations.

Just my 2 cents.
You can probably find a used 5D1V in decent condition at a lower price than an R7 plus EF adaptor and the 5D4 is a great camera.
That said the biggest leap forward in camera technology for me came when I bought the R5 and RF100-500 which is also the perfect travel combination too as it's relatively small and lightweight.
Buying another DSLR is a backward move really and if you can afford to push the boat out I'd sell all your current gear and buy that set up but as you say you'd struggle to upgrade to RF glass at the moment I personally would for now buy the R7 and adaptor provided it's compatible with your Sigma and you need to check that out first.
Performance of the R7 over the 7D2 is much improved. It's fairly happy at ISO 1600 and can be pushed further if necessary and the noise dealt with in PP. The gains in auto focus and eye detect are amazing and the ability to look through the viewfinder and see what the final image will look like is a game changer too.
If you expect to be filling the frame with the subject, you will notice an improvement moving from 7D to 5D, but not a lot, in my experience. And, in the era of mirrorless cameras it doesnt make a lot of sense to get an incrementally better DLSR when the 7Dii is already quite good as a DSLR. Stick with the 7D until you can afford to switch to a mirrorless camera (MILC).
A MILC has different focusing physics than a DSLR. As a result, photography of birds in flight, photography of birds that fill a reasonable portion of the frame are much better with MILC, low-light/slow shutter-speed photography is vastly improved, and the image you see through the viewfinder is exposure-compensated; however, focusing on obscured birds or birds that fill a tiny portion of the frame is better with DSLR. For multiple months I carried both a 7D and an R5 into the field, comparing them and learning how to use a mirrorless camera--which takes some time if you are used to a DSLR. If you can afford it, in my experience the R5 (and, I have heard, the R6ii) is notably better than an R7: the R5 is a full-frame sensor and it has better high ISO performance. The latter may not sound like much, but I think it one of the strongest reasons to switch from DSLR to MILC: you can take pictures of immobile birds up to ISO 12,800 and down to 1/15s shutter speeds...lighting conditions where a DSLR can give you nothing without a flash.

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