Canon 7D or 5D Mk. II?

Created by thattomjohnson on Sept. 25, 2012, 8:12 a.m.
  • So my Canon 50D is now permanently out of commission and I'm now back in the market for a new DSLR. I'm torn between the 7D and the 5D Mk. II, as the Mk. III is far out of my price range, and the 6D doesn't interest me. I'm a photojournalism student, so I need to figure out which to buy pretty fast as being without a camera for too long is problematic. I've used a 7D for a while and adore it, but there's something really appealing about the full-frame 5D Mk. II, even though it's autofocus system is ancient and it has a slower burst rate.

    Any advice or input would be greatly appreciated.

  • @thattomjohnson: It's really about whether you want something for fast action, or full-frame. They're both equally good cameras within their market segment, and you need to decide what it is that you want to use it for.

  • @thattomjohnson: personally, I'd be all over that full-frame. I don't do sports or racing or any sort of photography like that, so FPS doesn't matter, and I focus manually. While more focus (and xfocus) points would be nice, I'd certainly appreciate the larger frame moreso.

  • Full frame is so much better in every way. As a photography student myself, I've extensively used the XT, XTi, XS, XSi, T1i, T2i, T3i, 40d, 50d, 60d, 7d, 5d Mark ii, Nikon D40, D80, D90, D300, D3.

    Point is I've used a lot of cameras, although some of them are quite old. By far my favorite one out of the bunch was the 5d Mark ii.

    Full frame makes such a difference - furthermore, the colors are better and the lowlight is better. But I have to hand it to the 7d in terms of focusing speed and body build. The 7d's body molds to your hands and makes your job faster and easier.

    But still - I can't let go of my baby. Now, whenever I shoot weddings - I use my 5d Mark ii all the time usually with a 50mm 1.4 or 35mm 1.4. I hardly use the 24-70.

  • @thattomjohnson: Did you ever decide?

  • I still shoot my D40, it has performed admirably for what it cost me and how long it has lasted. Although, I have both a d3100 and a d5100. The d3100 I haven't used too much but I won it and it was free. The d5100 was a steal I got off craigslist. But I want to invest in a better camera, and I should be able to get a fair amount for the d3100 and d5100 on Craigslist. I want to stick with Nikon because I have a lot of Nikon glass.

    Any idea on how well the D600 performs or is there a better Nikon I should look at?

    Also, just for laughs, here is a great read(ha)-
    He bought the iphone 3gs in september 2012, and scroll down to the performance part of the review that is where it gets really good.
  • @PiltdownMan:  I stuck with a 7D for the time being. I deemed the higher frame rate in continuous shooting and better autofocus system as being more important right now, as I have to shoot quite a few NCAA games these days. However, I'll definitely be pairing it with a full-frame body early next year sometime, although whether or not I'll go 5D or 6D still remains to be seen. I regret nothing, especially since I was blue to nab a 7D body' new in box for around $1300.

  • @bjpe89:  I've used the d5100 for class in the past, and its a nice piece for the price. The big selling point on the D600 as far as I'm concerned is the ability to monitor audio right from the camera, which is invaluable when shooting video. If video doesn't matter to you, you can get some really nice deals on a used D700 body if you're looking to go full-frame. If you don't mind a crop, the D7000 isn't a bad choice either. I've used both extensively and if I weren't a Canon guy I could easily see myself using either. From what I've seen in playing with my professor's D600, it's more or less a D7000 with a big fat sensor in it and some other nice additions, with a build quality lower than the D700, obviously.
  • @thattomjohnson: I've been pretty happy with my 7D, though since I was working at a retail environ that required shooting babies a lot with a Oly E1 it took a lot of the photographic drive out of me. (Working that job for 6 years did teach me to interact with children well though, or at least get them to like me quickly a large percent of the time, which seems weird now, not doing that job...) The high framerate is awesome, I think I took my first panning shots with it here. The main things I upgraded for were the pro body and video stuff. Other than that I was pretty happy with my XTi. Again I'm a little upset I haven't challenged myself more recently but just got out of pushing a shutter button while acting like a monkey I'm not yet ready to start chimping every chance I get. We do need to get Norm to start reading the strobist if he is going to be our photo reporter and stop correcting Will when he's right like in the Ocktobercast when he said that sensor size affected DOF.

  • IMO, you're talking about fundamentally different tools for different jobs. I know it doesn't seem like it, both being cameras from the same manufacturer, with similar functionality, but the honest truth is you're talking about a prosumer camera, and a professional camera. You're drawn to the 5D because it's so awesome, and rightly so. You're now left with two questions:

    1) Is it worth saving up for?

    2) Is it worth abandoning all of my EF-S glass?

    Now, I've made an assumption that you might have owned EF-S mount lenses with your 50D. I did when I owned one, but if your lenses aren't necessarily designed for the smaller sensor, then you can disregard question 2. If you have to sell any EF-S lenses (like say, the 18-200mm) you'll find that cash can help you purchase your new full frame camera.

    The problem is, your'e talking about a significant jump in price for a subjectively better experience if you're a photographer of videographer. I'm of the opinion that the camera can pay for itself if you use it for commercial work, but if you're just a hobbyist, then I'd suggest the 7D. The technology is leaping so quickly that the current 5D specs will be a joke within a year. I wouldn't be surprised if Canon pushed out a prosumer upgrade to the 7D very early in 2013. That would change the game for you entirely. If the 5D is already your fantasy, then get it.

    Do what I did: commit to a few months of savings or commit to the profit from jobs paying for it after you've purchased it.