Now that it’s here, let’s talk about the big question on many people’s minds. Should you buy the Canon 5D Mark III?
The 5D MkIII is probably one of the best camera packages on the planet for under $5,000. The ability to shoot stunning stills and video in one small camera makes it a dream come true for most. But is it the right camera for you? Let’s break it down…
What the 5D MkIII DOES DO
- Take amazing stills, remember this is a stills camera first and foremost.
- Have improvements in almost every feature.
- Shoots in lower light situations = Higher ISO sensitivity.
- Improved codec for video.
- Headphone output for monitoring audio.
- Adds ability to shoot 60p (though only in 720p).
- Reduced moire and aliasing.
- Adds option for time code.
What the 5D MkIII DOES NOT DO
- Have clean HDMI out. Big frowny face on this one. That means no external recorders.
- Have XLR audio in (still uses 3.5mm audio jack).
- Have RAW video (though no one really expected that).
- Eliminate moire and aliasing. New processor doesn’t line skip anymore but it still has to process the image down from 22.3 MP to 1920×1080 which may possibly create some minor moire or aliasing issues.
- Be a true video camera.
I’m reminded of Halo: Combat Evolved for the Xbox (for those of you who play video games). When the game was released, it revolutionized console first person shooters. By the time Halo 3 came out for the Xbox 360, it was a great game, but many called it Combat “Refined” rather than a new evolution for the franchise.
I think the 5D MkIII is HDSLR “refined”. It isn’t revolutionizing the market, rather it improves upon an already solid platform.
So should you buy one?
I think it depends on who you are.
At $3500, it ain’t cheap! Chances are great you won’t benefit much from the premium price tag required for 5D MkIII ownership. Take a look at a 5D MkII for a much more affordable price or a 7D or 60D for an even larger price difference.
Verdict – There are more HDSLR fish in the sea. Pass.
The Professional Videographer
The 5D MkIII is certainly an improvement over the MkII, but stepping up to the $3500 price point puts you within a stone’s throw from a true large sensor video camera like the FS100 or AF100. If you’re a serious shooter, you may miss many of the pro features found in a true camcorder. But if you do photo work as well and want to either have one small package or invest in a single camera, then it may be a good option for you.
Verdict – For Video Only = Pass -Â For Stills & Video = Buy
The 5D MkIII is a beautiful stills camera. Full frame images have their own unique flare that can’t be achieved with any other format. The 5D3 will be the flagship camera of any professional wedding, event or portrait photographer. Video may be just a bonus for you but certainly can be a welcome feature for business or just for fun.
Verdict – Save up your pennies and Buy!
At the end of the day, a camera is an investment and a tool to bring your visions to life. A DSLR has the unique ability to become an extension of the shooter. You will find yourself looking at life as if through the lens of your camera even when it’s not with you. With all the features crammed into this amazing looking camera, it would be hard to go wrong with a pal like the 5D MkIII.
Want one?Â Pre-order right nowÂ to get ahead of the crowd.
I’m curious how much you got to use the camera to justify the comments about the images and features being so good?
I’ve seen the reviews and read the blogs last night and I have to agree with you. It all depends on what you’re using the camera for and your shooting style. Full blown video, no, HDSLR is not for you. I shoot mainly indie shorts, music videos, and commercials down here. I use a T2i. My use of the HDSLR is worth it, to me, as I do planned short takes (less than 12 minutes) and spend time with setup, lighting, etc. No real “run and gun”.Â
I’d like to upgrade, but I’m actually looking at the 60D for that, keeping the T2i as a 2nd cam. If someone gave me a 5DMkIII would I take it? YES! Would I buy it? No. As you said Tony, at that point, for video, kick in the extra $1K and get a Sony or Pany rig and an EOS adapter for your lens set to start.
What are your thoughts about the D800 for photography? Why is the 5DMkIII the flagship for you?
I’ve got the D800 and the 5D3 coming in for review at the end of the month for testing and review. I want to buy one of these for my new ‘a’ camera and use my T2i as my ‘b’ camera. It should be interesting to see what they can do.
since the nikon d800 is a strong competitor, i am waiting some time so i can get my hands on the nikon d800 vs the canon 5dmk3. and it’s still not clear if we might not get the 5d3 hacked and hdmi up and running with magic lantern.