canon 5D mark iii

Initial "Impressions" with the 5D Mark III - Dog Edition by Justin Fritts

I say "impressions" because color me impressed.  So I've only had a few days to play and it's been all play, no work.  Haven't really sat down to do side by side with the 5D2 but let me tell you, using this thing is a pleasure.  It fits better in my hand than the 5D2 (deeper grip, grippier), the AF is amazing, the ISO is amazing.  Unfortunately it's time to learn a whole new button setup, not a huge fan of that but I'm already adapting and can see some of the advantages.  Soon I'll be posting some side by side 5D2 and 5D3 but for now, here's some of my favorite snaps from this weekend (I've spent a lot of time around dogs this weekend as it turns out).  

A few more samples after the break...

And another running one.

And the last, another ISO test with a fun extra.

As an extra little note I had gone through and done MFA adjustments on all my lenses for about half of these, my 24-70 really needed it and took advantage of the new wide adjustment and telephoto adjustment.  Fantastic!  I believe I'm a -14 on the wide side and a -7 on the tele side.  I can't believe I can make that adjustment still.

This week I'm going to take an evening and do side by side 5D2 and 5D3 photos using my 70-200.  I'll take requests from people if they want any, if not I'll just pick them all myself.  Mostly ISO related I'm sure, hard to repeat AF tests.

How to open your Canon 5D Mark III Photos in Lightroom by Justin Fritts

Edit: A LR 4.1 Release Candidate has been released that supports the 5D3, you have to create a new catalog but you can plan on being able to import the 4.1 RC catalog into 4.1 once it is officially released.  

Alright, I know some of us have our 5Dmk3 already and some of us are waiting, me included sadly.  My buddy Andrew over at AK Photo Denver  just gave me the heads up, LR 3 and LR 4 don't support Canon 5D Mark III RAW files yet.  I guess it's been implemented into Adobe RAW already but not into Lightroom yet, plan on it being there in the next release.  Anyway, he wrote up a quick article helping people like myself out and I figured I'd pass the knowledge along, I'll need this knowledge very soon myself.

It's simple really, convert the CR2 into a RAW file.

Just do this:

  1. Go grab yourself Adobe's DNG Converter (like I said, it already supports the Canon 5D Mark III)
  2. Install it and run it
  3. Point it to your folder housing the CR2 files and set your output back to the same folder or somewhere new, up to you.  If you have Auto Import going you could output to there, as they're converted they'll pop into Lightroom.
  4. Now click "Convert" and wait as the conversions take place.
  5. If you didn't do the Auto Import just import from that folder you just exported to.
Not too hard at all.  This will make your CR2s into DNGs which is a non-proprietary RAW format but still completely lossless.  Might even get a little bit of space savings out of it, some compression is done, zip file like compression, not JPG like compression.
Andrew has some screenshots and such on his posting right over here.

Canon 5D Mark III? by Justin Fritts

  Could this be it? After tons of waiting and anticipation, could this be it?  Canon Rumors has posted what they believe is the final spec sheet of the 5D that will be unveiled tonight(?).  The question is, do I upgrade? Do you?  Let's break down the specs.  My thoughts after the specs.

Image Quality and Sensor 22.3 Megapixel Full Frame CMOS sensor DIGIC 5+ Image Processor ISO 100-25600 (expandable to L:50 H1:51200, H2: 102400 Full HD Movie (ISO 100-12800 (H:25600)

Operation 61-point high-density reticular AF (up to 41 crosstype points) 6.0 fps for high continuous shooting Intelligent viewfinder with approx. 100% coverage 3.2-type, approx.1.04m dot (3:2 wide) Clear View LCD II iFCL metering with 63-zone dual-layer sensor Shutter durability of 150,000 cycles

High end features Silent & low vibration modes Dual card slots (CF & SD) High Dynamic Range (HDR) Mode Multiple Exposures Comparative Playback function Improved durability & water and dust resistance

SPECIFICATIONS Available Colours – Black Megapixels – 22MP Sensor Size – 36 x 24mm ISO/Sensitivity – 100 – 25600 Autofocus Points – 61 points Lens Mount – Canon LCD Size – 3.2″ Liveview – Yes Viewfinder – Optical TTL Min Shutter Speed – 30 sec Max Shutter Speed – 1/8000 sec Continuous Shooting Speed – 6 fps Self Timer – 10 sec, 2 sec Metering – Centre-weighted, Spot, Evaluative, Partial Video Resolution – Full HD 1080 Memory Type – Compact Flash Connectivity – USB 2, HDMI, Mic Input, Wireless (optional) Battery – LP-E6 Battery Type – Lithium-ion Charger – Includes Li-Ion Charger File Formats – AVI, RAW, H.264, MOV, MPEG-4 Dimensions – 152 x 116 x 76mm Box Contents – Battery Pack LP-E6 .. Battery Charger LC-E6 .. AV Cable AVC-DC400ST .. Interface Cable IFC-200U .. Eyecup Eg .. Wide Strap EWEOS5DMKIII .. CR1616 Lithium Battery+


So, first thoughts from me. 

Megapixels: 5D2 21.1 MP, 5D3 22.3 MP.  I think that 22MP is a good sweet spot, anything bigger takes more RAM and time to crunch and render.  With my Intel 2.8GHz Quad Duo with 10GB RAM 21.1 MP can take plenty of time to get a 1:1 preview. 

Sensor: Digic 5 vs Digic 4.  There is no doubt that the Digic 5 will bring plenty of improvement for quality and high ISO noise.  Will it be enough, the Digic 4 is pretty amazing up to 6400 ISO although if it's another leap that makes 6400 ISO on a Digic 5 look like 1600 on a Digic 4 that will be enough for me.

ISO Range: 5D2 H2 = 25,600, a setting I've only ever used for fun, quality isn't great here, 5D3 native at 25,600 not pushed.  Again if 25,600 looks close to 6400, I'm in.  Although I'll still probably hardly ever use it.

100% viewfinder coverage vs 98%, awesome!

Slightly larger screen, hopefully it has the clarity of my Galaxy Nexus (yeah right)

Autofocus Points: Here could be the big winner, 61 AF Points vs 9 AF Points.  This could help out a lot with motorcycle racing, dogs, kids, anything and everything.

Burst Speed: 6.0 fps vs 3.9 fps.  This is why I still have the 40D, to get that 6.0 fps.  Another possible great feature.

Dual Card Slots: Hopefully you can open the card door while recording video and swap one of the two out, I may be really hoping for a lot here but that would be amazing.

Some Added S/W: Added software features like HDR, Multiple Exposure (if that means what I think it means) could be great.

Better Water and Dust Resistance: Who doesn't want that. 


Overall conclusion. 

If these specs end up being accurate you can pretty much count me in for an upgrade, will I be a first adopter, maybe not, the 5D2 had a few bugs that required some time to work out and I may wait for some more info and reviews to be sure it's what I need and want.  I think the most impressive part about these specs is just the fact of how, and I don't want to sound like a naysayer here, but how little of an upgrade they are to the 5D2.  They're all great improvements likely worth the cost of the upgrade but nothing completely mind blowing, instead completely expected, better sensor, better ISO, higher burst, better AF.  I don't think this is anything against Canon though, I think it's more proof that the 5D2 was just totally ahead of it's time when it came out to combine all those things into one camera 3+ years ago and to put the 7D out after that that gave us a hint at what could be part of the next 5D.

The 5D2 remains a solid competitor to this theoretical 5D3 especially for people who don't do a lot of sports or low light photography but for those that do sports and low light like myself, these upgrades could be priceless.

I'm hoping the specs are true or better than this, perhaps we'll find out at 9PM tonight (my time, MST). 

Also maybe to come a 590EX flash and a new 24-70mm 2.8 L?