Understanding the Canon 5D Mark III

Written by: Colby Brown / 3 Comments

On the the 25th anniversary of the EOS system, Canon finally has announced the 5D Mark III. It looks to overcome many of the shortfalls of the hugely popular Canon 5D Mark II DSLR camera with a much improved AF system, high FPS, better ISO performance and much more.

As more information is released, I will update this article. Below is a chart that compares a handful of semi pro and pro DSLRs from both Nikon and Canon to the 5D Mark III, a series of videos released by Canon’s very own Chuck Westfall that cover many of the new features of the camera and a series of press images from Canon of the 5D Mark III.

The camera itself is set to be released by the end of March 2012 and you can currently pre-order it at both Amazon and Adorama.

Spec Comparison

Canon EOS 5D Mark IICanon EOS
5D Mark III
Canon EOS 1DxNikon D700Nikon D800
Sensor21.1-megapixel CMOS
4-channel readout
14 bit
22.3-megapixel CMOS
8-channel readout
14-bit
18-megapixel CMOS
2-line, 16-channel readout
14-bit
12.1-megapixel CMOS
n/a
14 bit
36.3-megapixel CMOS
n/a
14 bit
ISO Sensitivity RangeISO 50 (exp)/100 – ISO 6400/25600 (exp)ISO 50 (exp)/100 – ISO 25600/102,400 (exp)ISO 50 (exp)/ 100 – ISO 51,200/204,800 (exp)ISO 100 (exp)/200 – ISO 6400/ 25,600 (exp)ISO 50 (exp)/100 – ISO 6400/ 25600 (exp)
FPS3.9 fps
14 raw/310 JPEG
6 fps12fps5fps
17 raw/100 JPEG
4fps
n/a
(5fps with battery grip)
Viewfinder Coverage100% coverage
0.71x/0.71x
100% coverage
0.71x/0.71x
100% coverage
0.76x/0.76x
95% coverage
0.72x/0.72x
100% coverage
0.70x/0.70x
Autofocus9-pt AF
1 cross type
61-pt High Density Reticular AF
21 center diagonal to f5.6
5 center to f2.8
20 outer to f4
61-pt High Density Reticular AF
21 center diagonal to f5.6
5 center to f2.8
20 outer to f4
51-pt
15 cross type
51-pt
15 cross type; 11 cross type to f8
AF Exposure Range-0.5 – 18
EV
2 – 20 EV2 – 20 EV-1 – 19 EV-2 – 19 EV
Shutter Durability150,000 cycles150,000 cycles400,000 cycles150,000 cycles200,000 cycles
Metering Range1 – 20 EV0 – 20 EV (est)0 – 20 EV0 – 20 EV0 – 20 EV
VideoH.264 QuickTime MOV 1080/30p/ 25p/24p; 720/25p/24pH.264 QuickTime MOV
1080/30p/25p/24p; 720/60p/50p
H.264 QuickTime MOV
1080/30p/25p/24p; 720/60p/50p
n/aH.264 QuickTime MOV
1080/30p/ 25p/24p; 720/60p/50p/ 25p/24p
Audiomono; mic inputmono;mic input; headphone jackmono;mic input; headphone jackn/amono;mic input; headphone jack
Memory Slots1 x CF1 x CF + 1 x SDXC2 x CF1 x CF1 x CF + 1 x SDXC
Battery Size1,800mAh1,800mAh2,450mah1,500mAh1,800mAh
Launch Price (Body only)$2,499$3,499$6,800$2,199.95$2,999.95/$3,299.95
Ship DateNovember 2008March 2012April 2012July 2008March/April 2012

Videos

Auto Focus System

Drive Modes and Shutter

HDR Modes

Comparison Playback Feature

Photos of 5D Mark III (From Canon)

* For sample Images and Video from the Canon 5D Mark III, click HERE

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