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Old Aug 12, 2009, 7:37 AM   #21
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Going from an SX1 IS straight to a FF dSLR is quite a leap. And good glass for a FF dSLR is a lot more expensive than good glass for an APS-C dSLR. What is it about a FF dSLR that you think you can't get from an APS-C dSLR?
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 9:06 AM   #22
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Yes, 5d2 focus system will fail in low light. Choose a better camera than 5d2. A900 focuses better than 5d2 but it has worse high ISO performance. A900 is superior than 5d2 in every way (build quality, focusing accuracy, speed (5 fps), In-body image stabilizatio, 100% viewfinder) except high ISO performance.

What's left then? D700?
Really? I reckon the Live View and Video features on the 5D2 are a lot better than the Sony. :-)

The 5D2 AF system will not always fail in low light, a great deal depends on the lens you are using and what you are shooting and your skill level with the tools at your disposal.

The extra light let in by the fast lenses helps the AF system a lot. Take your A900 and put on your 24mm f1.4 - oh wait you can't 'cos there isn't one. Maybe the 85f1.2 - oh wait you can't 'cos there isn't one. Never mind how about the 50 f1.2 - oh wait... ,or the 200 f2 - oh wait..., how about the 400 f2.8 - blast I'm beginning to detect a pattern.

The Sony is a wonderful camera, but for most purposes it's almost identical to the 5D2, in some ways a little better in others a little worse.

I have yet to see ANY reliable evidence that the A900 AF system is better in low light than the 5D2. (The plural of anecdote is anecdotes not evidence.)

The D700 is an excellent choice if you don't want video or the extra resolution. But you might.

If you want the best AF and the best resolution there is the D3X but it's a bit pricey.

Anyway you're trying to choose between Porsche, Ferrari and Lambourghini here. It really doesn't matter all that much which one you choose.

BTW this shot was taken at ISO25600 with a 5DMkII and 24-105L in a tunnel underground with a very dim overhead light. It was so dark it takes about 60 seconds for your eyes to adjust so that you can walk without crashing into things and hurting yourself. The AF system locked on immediately because I aimed it at an area with sufficient contrast and a good edge, then recomposed. Most AF failures are from people who expect the camera to do all the work for them. For action photography having a brilliant Servo AF is very important for some people. But for many, even most people it's not important or necessary.

But once again - this is just an anecdote, not proper data. Unfortunately almost no-one actually does these tests properly and forums are full of anecdotes - that is their purpose. :-)


Last edited by peripatetic; Aug 12, 2009 at 9:22 AM.
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 12:13 PM   #23
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I'm sure there are similar posts for Nikon & Sony cameras to the one I'm including. So the intent is not to say the 5dII is better, just to provide real-world examples. Here's a thread from another forum - the user (an extremely gifted photographer) took these with the 5dII, kit lens (24-105) at ISO 3200 - no noise reduction (unclear whether he used in camera or not). A couple external light sources - key for portrait work - but these help give you an idea of the clarity, color and sharpness the 5dII and kit lens provide at high ISOs. For anyone asking "why full frame"? This is as good an answer as there is. High ISO isn't just for sports.
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=32657833
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 12:17 PM   #24
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Based on??
.
Based on personal experience of many 5d2 owners. 5d2 focusing system is not that accuarate -- too many out of focus photos, and especally trouble focusing in low light. Despite good high iso performance, it's not the best low light camera due to this.

You posted your opinion, and I posted mine. I will stick with mine.

Last edited by oneguy; Aug 12, 2009 at 1:47 PM.
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 12:39 PM   #25
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Oneguy - I can't speak to the low light focus performance of the 5dII as I don't own it. I will say this - focus performance claims (good or bad) for ANY camera in ANY system always must be taken with a grain of salt. For example, you'll always get people saying "wow the focus on this camera is OUTSTANDING" - but they're not doing anything dfficult and have no point of reference. Or you get people who say the focus system is faulty but they have no clue on how to use it properly (expecting it to be point and shoot). For example, if I'm looking for focus posts on the 5dII, I'm looking for people who have used 1-series Canon bodies. In Nikon land I'm looking for people who have used Dx-series bodies. In both cases with professional lenses. If someone is reviewing Sony, Pentax or Oly cameras since none of them have professional grade track records - I'm looking for people who have shot those pro grade cameras in Canon & Nikon.

Especially when you're talking semi-pro and pro body reviews I take any reviewer's comments with a grain of salt until I look at their photos. I'm looking for full time pros first-off because they are most demanding. NOt so interested in people that just jumped up from the lowest level to the semi-pro or pro. Lots of people today have disposable income. Just because someone buys an expensive camera it doesn't mean they know what they're doing or have any frame of reference. So I wouldn't suggest blindly trusting any positive or negative comments from camera users without varifying their credentials (and yes, in the realm of cameras we're talking about there should be plenty of professionals using these camera bodies)

In summary - there are only a couple photographers in this thread which actually shoot on a regular basis with any of the cameras under discussion. None of them are full time pros. Some earn money but to my knowledge none are professionals.

To the OP, I would suggest going over to Fred Miranda and DP Review or dgrin.com and taking a look in those forums for pros using the cameras under discussion.

In the real world, magazine reviews and spec sheets don't mean a whole lot. So, look for photos / galleries by people using the cameras under consideration.

Good luck in whatever you decide.
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 2:01 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by peripatetic View Post
Really? I reckon the Live View and Video features on the 5D2 are a lot better than the Sony. :-)
Only if you need it. If the OP will never use his DSLR for taking videos, it might be useless for him.

Last edited by oneguy; Aug 12, 2009 at 2:04 PM.
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 2:19 PM   #27
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One additional note to my above post: to the OP, it's entirely possible you don't need 'the best' camera for you. When looking for actual photos taken by real people in the real world - if you find several different photographers using Camera A whose results appear 'good enough' for your needs, shooting the types of subjects you shoot, that may be all that is necessary. Compare those results with your own experience hand-holding the different cameras with lens(es) being considered and you'll be able to make a choice. One thing to note - when looking at those galleries from other photographers make sure of two things:
1) they're shooting what you plan to shoot
2) pay attention to the lens being used as well as other accessories (like the lighting used by the photographer I posted above). That's a huge part of things. You can't look at a photo from a camera with a $3,000 lens you won't own and expect your results with a kit lens to be the same. Or even the case of a specialized lens like a macro lens. Don't expect a kit lens to produce the same quality macro work a dedicated $500 macro lens produces.

Finally, according to your own post you are interested in a wide variety of subjects. It's very likely you'll be unable to find a photographer shooting all the different things you want to shoot with one of these cameras. Do the best you can to find several photographers that match (in total) what you want to shoot - giving weight to those areas you plan on shooting most. For example, if birds in flight represent only 10% of your shots I wouldn't concentrate too hard to find a lot of BIF examples. But if it's 40% then you should (although if BIF were really 40% I would suggest full-frame is not a good fit).
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Old Aug 12, 2009, 5:09 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oneguy View Post
Based on personal experience of many 5d2 owners. 5d2 focusing system is not that accuarate -- too many out of focus photos, and especally trouble focusing in low light. Despite good high iso performance, it's not the best low light camera due to this.

You posted your opinion, and I posted mine. I will stick with mine.
It's always difficult when you are have an opinion based only on 3rd party info and pass this on as fact as the OP is not able to as any questions to someone who has actually used the kit in these conditions. Are they experience photographers, have they used other kit in similar situations etc.

I base my opinion and advice on practical experience (I have 5 Canon dSLRs in my bag and a myriad of lenses to cover sporting events, weddings, portrait shoots etc), I have used these cameras in anger and can say that the 5D doesn't pose any issues. I've also used a D700 as a friend has one as his prime wedding body and can also say that is a lovely piece of kit.

I'm not trying to push the OP to the Canon but think it is best that they are given balanced advice so that an informed decision can be made as this is not a small purchase and buying into the right system is key.
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Old Aug 13, 2009, 3:34 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oneguy View Post
Based on personal experience of many 5d2 owners. 5d2 focusing system is not that accuarate -- too many out of focus photos, and especally trouble focusing in low light. Despite good high iso performance, it's not the best low light camera due to this.

You posted your opinion, and I posted mine. I will stick with mine.
So because you read a bunch of forum posts somewhere you have formed an opinion that cannot be changed?

You don't even have any personal experience of the 5D2 - have you used any of the other cameras either?

Just so that the OP knows how much weight to give to your opinion that you are going to stick with. You don't even have any anecdotes - just hearsay.

The 5D2 has the same AF system as the 5D before it, possibly slightly better because it has a faster processor. It is a well-known quantity. A very high percentage of the world's wedding photographers and a significant chunk of PJ's have used the 5-series cameras to make their living in the last 5 years. Almost no sports or wildlife photographers use it. The D700 has a significantly better AF system, and the A900 probably has a slightly better AF system - tests show that it focusses slightly faster on easy subjects at least.

But is it good enough for the OP's purposes? It might be more than good enough, or it might not. Based on the sample pictures I would think it probably will be. It has a better AF system than any camera below its class from Canon and better than most cameras below its class from the other manufacturers. The only way you will get better AF from Canon is in a 1-series camera.
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Old Aug 13, 2009, 1:02 PM   #30
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It's not an opinion based on just forum posts. It's an opinion of a pro who only does photography for living. According to him, 5D2 is not the best camera for low light. The camera has difficulty in getting focusing accurate in low light.

As for for forum posts, that will depend on the forum. For example, many om Sony forum (some ex 5dii owners) claim A900 has better photo quality than 5dii at lower ISO .... For example, see:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=32469507
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