Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > General Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Apr 2, 2012, 6:17 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Electrolyte's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 113
Default Will Canon's APS-C cameras reach the competition's IQ in near future?

Hello there.
I'm ready to upgrade to DSLRs, my passion is wildlife photographies, so a long telephoto lens is essential. At the moment I have a superzoom camera, but I want an upgrade.

I really don't care about the camera too much, I don't want to spend a lot of money in the camera itself, but in the lenses.

The lens I'm thinking about is the Canon 100-400mm L IS USM, It's quite expensive, and I'm planning to get the 1.4 teleconverter in near future also, because it's possible to autofocus efficiently with it using the contrast detection (very slow though, much better than manual focus as long as you have the practice to manually focus near the subject before).

Full-frames are totally outta question here.

I was almost decided to buy a t2i (I would go with a t1i though, but i have an US$100 coupon for a t2i), however, I noticed that the Canons are lacking behind the competition in terms of IQ, even comparing the 7D or 60D with Nikon/Sony budget DSLRs there's a noticeable difference while shooting with ISOs 1600+, not to talk about the D5100 that puts every Canon APS-C camera to shame. Bad dynamic range, bad color depth and bad signal/noise.

My question is: Do you think Canon's budget DSLRs will reach the IQ of the competition in near future? I'm not sure if they really want to compete in the entry-level market. And I don't want to be forced to buy an expensive camera in the future in order to be able to take decent pictures.

It's a pity Nikon doesn't have something like the Canon 100-400mm...

Thank you.

Regards.
Electrolyte is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Apr 2, 2012, 8:14 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
TCav's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,572
Default

I'm not quite sure where you might have gotten some of your information, but the T2i/T3i is quite good, and compares well with the Nikon D5100/D7000 and the Sony A35/A55 as far as SNR and Dynamic Range are concerned, especially at high ISOs. (See http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cam...(brand3)/Canon )

I suggest you look at the Wildlife Photos forum to see what others, who shoot the same subjects you want to shoot, are using.
__________________
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2012, 9:39 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Electrolyte's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 113
Default

Thank you for your answer. I personally don't blindingly trust these numbers. I don't think those specific numbers are quite right... imho, if the Nikon D5100 scores 80, I would give something like 75 for the sony and >70 for the Canon*, I don't think the difference is that huge for the Canon to score 66. Anyways, I'm not telling that the current cameras are THAT bad, but for me looks like the entry-level cameras from Canon are getting worse in terms of IQ, while the competitors are making better entry-level cameras, if this continues, I'll be forced to buy a full-frame or a mid-end DSLR like the 7D in the future, something I don't want, or stick with my good ol' Canon.

Of course they get better in many aspects, but what I'm really interested is IQ. I know the Canons have better video features, etc., and the full-frames are terrific, but once I buy the lens, it's kinda no turn back, I'll have to have Canon cameras for the rest of my life and I don't think it's a good brand for "cheap" DSLRs. At the moment Nikon and Sony seems much better. The lens are the problem, even the Nikkor lenses produce too much chromatic aberration, and the Sony doesn't even have something better than the SAL70300 (300mm). Sigmas, Tamrons, Tokinas are just crap imho (I'm VERY picky , unfortunately i'm kinda poor also, so i need to keep bringing the bar down).

*-Because a good photographer will avoid higher ISOs as much as possible, so the performance at very high ISOs isn't the most important thing, and also, this is totally not-real-world.

If only these "generic" manufacturers had something like the Canon 100-400mm .

Regards.
Electrolyte is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 4:53 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
wave01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: North West England
Posts: 1,749
Default

I think it depends whos review you look at whos is the best or better what i would do is get a couple of sd cards and go and try them out and compare for yourself. The T2i, T3i, 60d and 7d all use the same sensor.I think sigma does 120 -400 and 150- 500
wave01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 7:17 AM   #5
Super Moderator
 
peripatetic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 3,599
Default

1. Canon isn't much behind. Maybe 1/2 - 3/4 stop at higher ISO. Seriously not worth worrying much about. The difference between photographers dwarfs the difference between cameras.

2. Forget about use CDAF with live view for wildlife - it's too slow. Unless the animals are dead and stuffed, in which case you can just walk closer.

3. Sigma has a 50-500 lens - which gets some image stabilization when used on a Sony or Pentax body.

My recommendation:

1. Pentax K5 with kit lens.
2. Sigma 50-500 (Bigma) for wildlife. (Or 150-500 or similar if the Bigma is too expensive.)
3. Metz 58 AF2 flash for Pentax + Better Beamer attachment.
__________________
My gallery
My X100 blog
peripatetic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 8:07 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
TCav's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,572
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrolyte View Post
... I personally don't blindingly trust these numbers. I don't think those specific numbers are quite right...
Forget the subjective scores. They don't mean anything, and are, for the most part, misleading.

Look at the objective Measurements for SNR 18% and Dynamic Range.
__________________
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 8:56 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 3,396
Default

Having tried to use a few year old 100-400 on a 7d and a very new 100-400 on a 5d-mkii both with 1.4 teleconverters.
I can tell you neither of these cameras would autofocus with that combination attached, so I suspect any rebel would not autofocus either.
f/8 is beyond what canon consumer bodies will AF with.

Both bodies worked just fine with my 120-300 f/2.8 and a 2x teleconverter, (f/5.6) as did my wife's rebel xti.

If you need longer I would look to one of the Sigma's like the 150-500.
BTW 400mm is on the short side for wildlife unless it is very close, and it is entry level for birds.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrolyte View Post
The lens I'm thinking about is the Canon 100-400mm L IS USM, It's quite expensive, and I'm planning to get the 1.4 teleconverter in near future also, because it's possible to autofocus efficiently
__________________
A smartphone is all the "camera" you really need.
PeterP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 8:58 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Electrolyte's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 113
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wave01 View Post
I think it depends whos review you look at whos is the best or better what i would do is get a couple of sd cards and go and try them out and compare for yourself. The T2i, T3i, 60d and 7d all use the same sensor.I think sigma does 120 -400 and 150- 500
Quote:
Originally Posted by peripatetic View Post
1. Canon isn't much behind. Maybe 1/2 - 3/4 stop at higher ISO. Seriously not worth worrying much about. The difference between photographers dwarfs the difference between cameras.

2. Forget about use CDAF with live view for wildlife - it's too slow. Unless the animals are dead and stuffed, in which case you can just walk closer.

3. Sigma has a 50-500 lens - which gets some image stabilization when used on a Sony or Pentax body.

My recommendation:

1. Pentax K5 with kit lens.
2. Sigma 50-500 (Bigma) for wildlife. (Or 150-500 or similar if the Bigma is too expensive.)
3. Metz 58 AF2 flash for Pentax + Better Beamer attachment.
1-totally agree.

2-i know it's too slow for wildlife, but it's far better than manual focus and at least in modern models (i tested the t3i) it's fairly accurate also, you just need to use the technique of approximating manually.

3 & @wave01 -I tested this Sigma (both the 50-500 and the 150-500 actually) and its quality can't be compared with the Canon 100-400. It's very soft at 500mm 6.3f, and even at something like f8, the Canon is much sharper, this Sigma lenses are so soft that even using a good 300mm you'll be able to capture more information, and the Canon 100-400mm can be used even with a 2x TC and it produces extremely sharp pictures, much sharper than this sigma @500mm f8, and I also tested the Sigma 150-500mm with their teleconverter and the images are just horrible, if you resample the image of the Canon 100-400mm @ 400mm i'm pretty sure you'll get something much better than the image from the Bigmos with TC. Especially the colors, they are horrible, they shifts too much, so the image gets that washed look.

About the Pentax: No, thank you . There's no such a brand where I live, I could import but if I ever need repairs, maintenance (cleaning, etc) and etc., I'll need to send it to other Country... It's outta question.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TCav View Post
Forget the subjective scores. They don't mean anything, and are, for the most part, misleading.

Look at the objective Measurements for SNR 18% and Dynamic Range.
I believe more in what i see in practice with my own eyes than on these numbers.

----

I decided I'm gonna wait the next Canons to come out. I have a friend that have a 30D (if I remember correctly) and he's waiting for some camera to replace it that worths the bucks, I don't want to be like him .

So if the next small-sensor DSLRs end up being substantially better than the current ones (at least like the current Nikons) I'll go with Canon, otherwise I'll seriously consider other brands.

I'm also thinking about a d800 and a x-300mm lens. At least I could easily sell it later because It's far easier to sell used flagship cameras and more genera-purpose lenses like a 55-300mm.

It's just impossible to sell used budget DSLRs where I live. Unless for something like US$:90. .

Thank you guys.

Last edited by Electrolyte; Apr 3, 2012 at 9:08 AM.
Electrolyte is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 9:03 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 3,396
Default

Splitting into two posts/answers just to keep things separate.

Modern bodies and equipment are all very good, does not matter which manufacture is picked.
There was a term called mesaurebators being used a while ago for people who were picking things apart that was way beyond what humans are capable of seeing.

This parody article on equipment junkies hits the nail on the head
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/03/hammerforum-com
__________________
A smartphone is all the "camera" you really need.
PeterP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2012, 9:06 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
Electrolyte's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 113
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterP View Post
Having tried to use a few year old 100-400 on a 7d and a very new 100-400 on a 5d-mkii both with 1.4 teleconverters.
I can tell you neither of these cameras would autofocus with that combination attached, so I suspect any rebel would not autofocus either.
f/8 is beyond what canon consumer bodies will AF with.

Both bodies worked just fine with my 120-300 f/2.8 and a 2x teleconverter, (f/5.6) as did my wife's rebel xti.

If you need longer I would look to one of the Sigma's like the 150-500.
BTW 400mm is on the short side for wildlife unless it is very close, and it is entry level for birds.
I tested it myself (with Canon's Extender III 1.4) and It focuses using the contrast detection (live mode). I think pretty much any camera will refuse to focus using phase detection at apertures of f8 or smaller.

Believe me, you'll not be able to get more details of the subject with a Sigma 150-500 than with a Canon 100-400. This Sigmas (and pretty much any "generic" lenses) at lengths longer than 350mm are very soft unless at f8 or higher, but i'd rather buy a cheap mirror lens instead, if i'm going to get poor quality anyways.

Thank you.

Regards.
Electrolyte is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 2:18 AM.