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Author Topic: Would I benefit from going full frame?  (Read 10806 times)

sagittariansrock

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Would I benefit from going full frame?
« on: November 06, 2012, 05:25:20 PM »
I have an APS-C setup with the 7D and 10-22 and 17-55 2.8. I have considered moving to FF with the recent reduction in prices of the 5DII and the 6D being announced, but here's the dilemma:
1. I am quite happy with the IQ of the 7D up to ISO 1600, but the noise above that is bad. So indoor photography without flash suffers. That is the main reason for my FF considerations.
2. I am aware that if I move to FF, I will have to trade my EF-S lenses for FF equivalents. My lenses will hold their value and I can get the 24-105 and 17-40 without losing any money (cannot afford the 24-70 II). But while the 24-105 is very good lens, I am not so sure about the 17-40. I didn't like the copy I owned (and I used it on a 5DII as well). And, I cannot afford the 16-35 II. Additionally, if I use f/4 after moving to FF- what do I gain over using f/2.8 in APS-C?
3. I did like using the 5DII for the short time I had it and the images were very nice, especially since I almost exclusively use the center AF point, but I do use the high-speed mode a lot on my 7D and I will certainly miss it (and again, cannot afford the 5DIII).

So given these circumstances, is there something I would gain by going FF with a 5DII/6D with a 24-105/17-40 (that offsets my loss of fps) or should I wait until I can afford the 5DIII/24-70II/16-35II? I am sure many of you have gone this route- your advice will be greatly appreciated.


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Would I benefit from going full frame?
« on: November 06, 2012, 05:25:20 PM »

Kingnog

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2012, 05:47:26 PM »
I have a 7D, and I chose it over the 5DII. My decision was not based on price, but functionality. To me the autofocus of the 7D was much more important than the other 5DII features (lower high ISO noise....that's about it).

Go straight for the 5DIII or be happy with the 7D. I would not do an even swap with a 5DII. 6D seems like a 5DII so same goes for that.

Act444

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2012, 05:49:18 PM »
It really depends on what you enjoy shooting. For me, I made the move because I found myself shooting a lot of indoor events, and I prefer to use ambient lighting over flash. I wanted better high ISO performance than what I was getting from my 60D/17-55 and I had some $ saved up so I decided to go for the 5DIII and 24-70.

The real benefit of FF is at the high ISOs - 1600 and higher. While I almost never pushed the 60D beyond 3200, I have the 5D's auto ISO set up to 6400 and even 12,800 is usable.

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2012, 07:09:47 PM »
I have an APS-C setup with the 7D and 10-22 and 17-55 2.8. I have considered moving to FF with the recent reduction in prices of the 5DII and the 6D being announced, but here's the dilemma:
1. I am quite happy with the IQ of the 7D up to ISO 1600, but the noise above that is bad. So indoor photography without flash suffers. That is the main reason for my FF considerations.
2. I am aware that if I move to FF, I will have to trade my EF-S lenses for FF equivalents. My lenses will hold their value and I can get the 24-105 and 17-40 without losing any money (cannot afford the 24-70 II). But while the 24-105 is very good lens, I am not so sure about the 17-40. I didn't like the copy I owned (and I used it on a 5DII as well). And, I cannot afford the 16-35 II. Additionally, if I use f/4 after moving to FF- what do I gain over using f/2.8 in APS-C?
3. I did like using the 5DII for the short time I had it and the images were very nice, especially since I almost exclusively use the center AF point, but I do use the high-speed mode a lot on my 7D and I will certainly miss it (and again, cannot afford the 5DIII).

So given these circumstances, is there something I would gain by going FF with a 5DII/6D with a 24-105/17-40 (that offsets my loss of fps) or should I wait until I can afford the 5DIII/24-70II/16-35II? I am sure many of you have gone this route- your advice will be greatly appreciated.

I think you've already touched on the fact that the benefit you will get will depend on the use cases you need to fulfil.

Having access to a 7D, 5DII and 5DIII, I tend to gravitate to the 5DIII or 7D for anything that moves, and I'm happy with the 5DII for subjects like landscapes or posed portraits.
In low light, the 5DIII's AF will lock in circumstances where the 7D does not stand a chance.

If you can afford to keep your 7D, the 5DII +24-105 f/4L IS USM kit may be a good option to start with.  I still believe you cannot go wrong with the 24-105 f/4L IS USM.  I use that lens a lot on the 7D now as well.
If indoor photography without flash is your main consideration for full frame, you could even start with a 5DII and 50mm f/1.4.  (Before the days in which we all got lazy with zoom lenses, very many people used to shoot mainly with a 50mm lens.)  I realise this approach would see you have two separate cameras, but it may accommodate what you need.  You can then slowly start to acquire the glass you want for a full frame body.

If a major use for you is landscapes, then there is often no real differentiator between the 5DII or 5DIII - especially if you plan to shoot at ISO100 and use manual focus.
In terms of low light performance, the 5DIII really starts to pull away from the 5DII above ISO800. - My wife has a theatre job lined up later this month and the 5DIII will be a real winner here, as the 5DII struggles a little at ISO6400, while the 5DIII's ISO12800 is very usable.

The advantage you have at the moment is that Canon has played its hand, as far as full frame announcements go, with the exception of a possible very high resolution very high price body.  You thus know what Canon will have on the market for the next 3 to 4 years.  You know that the 5DII will be available until roughly the end of the year, so if you want one, you have a limited period of time left to buy.

As far as low light work goes, I tend to usually reach for a flash if I can, to augment whatever ambient light is available, unless flash is not permitted.  What the low light performance of the new bodies does give you though is a lot more flexibility to blend ambient light and flash.

If you do opt for the 5DII or 6D, I suspect you may still want to keep the 7D, because of its build quality (it can take longer showers than the 5DII), AF system, 8fps and 1/250s maximum flash sync speed (useful for outdoor flash in bright sunlight when you want to overpower the sun).
What you lose with the 5DII is full integration with some of Canon's latest accessories, like the GP-E2 and some of the capabilities of the new 600EX-RT Speedlite and ST-E3-RT transmitter.

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sagittariansrock

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2012, 12:28:41 AM »
as the 5DII struggles a little at ISO6400

This is consistent with what I felt during my brief sojourn in FF-land. 5DII is about 1.3-1.5 stops better than the 7D. I guess that is neutralized if I go for a f/4 EF instead of a f/2.8 EF-S.

Thanks for sharing first-hand experiences and impressions.
It seems that for me it would make sense to wait for the 5DIII unless I can keep both the 7D AND the 5DII/6D (and I can't). I had the same feeling myself, but it is reassuring to hear it from people with actual experience.
It is true that I can see the full gamut of Canon FFs for the next few years, and I appreciate being able to plan the transition on a long-term basis.
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wickidwombat

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2012, 12:50:53 AM »
as the 5DII struggles a little at ISO6400

This is consistent with what I felt during my brief sojourn in FF-land. 5DII is about 1.3-1.5 stops better than the 7D. I guess that is neutralized if I go for a f/4 EF instead of a f/2.8 EF-S.


more like 2 or more stops better IMO, 5Dmk2 raw files handle noise reduction alot better than the crops
and the 5Dmk3 leaves both in its dust by a long way
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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2012, 01:49:54 AM »

+1 on no flash....If you don't shoot anything fast 5D II + 24-105 is good start. With 24-105 on FF, you really have to slow down your shutter - 1/10 for indoor, which I hate it.

If you want real razor sharp at f2.8, then the new 24-70 II is the way to go. I would wait and save up the $$$ for 5D III + 24-70 II, then 70-200 f2.8 IS II. Ignore 16-35 II for now. It's good lens but sharpness is not that good.

Bottom line is FF the way to go.
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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2012, 01:49:54 AM »

christianronnel

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2012, 02:37:12 AM »
I have an APS-C setup with the 7D and 10-22 and 17-55 2.8. I have considered moving to FF with the recent reduction in prices of the 5DII and the 6D being announced, but here's the dilemma:
1. I am quite happy with the IQ of the 7D up to ISO 1600, but the noise above that is bad. So indoor photography without flash suffers. That is the main reason for my FF considerations.

Some people will disagree with me but this is from my experience, you only gain 1-stop of light in terms of usable ISO with the 5DII. Is that enough for your indoor photography without flash?  Additionally, and I think this is very important, unlike the 7D the 5DII does not have the focus assist beam.  You will need to attach the IR flash trigger or any speedlight with built-it IR focus assist beam.  This is important for lowlight even photography.  SO factor that into the cost of owning a full frame Canon.

2. I am aware that if I move to FF, I will have to trade my EF-S lenses for FF equivalents. My lenses will hold their value and I can get the 24-105 and 17-40 without losing any money (cannot afford the 24-70 II). But while the 24-105 is very good lens, I am not so sure about the 17-40. I didn't like the copy I owned (and I used it on a 5DII as well). And, I cannot afford the 16-35 II. Additionally, if I use f/4 after moving to FF- what do I gain over using f/2.8 in APS-C?
You own both of the best lenses for crop-sensor Canon bodies.  I just recently upgraded to full frame with the 5DIII.  I'm having a hard time replacing the EF-S 17-55 and the EF-S 10-22.  I haven't yet found zoom lenses that are just as sharp as those two lenses.  To date, I have tested 17-40 (hated it), 3 copies of 24-70L mk1 (the 3rd one was okay but still not sharp on the edges like the 17-55 and I sold it last night), and the 24-105L (worse than the 24-70 on the long end 50-105mm).  I just ordered the 16-35II and I'm saving up for the new 24-70II or the just announced 24-70 F4.  I do photography as a hobby and I'm just an enthusiast but I print my pictures (only sold a couple of prints).

My point to this is, unless you're printing your photos (landscape, portraiture, fine arts) I don't think there's much benefit for you to upgrade to full frame.  You will be very disappointed with the 5DII coming from the 7D.  It also sounds like money would be a factor in your decision.  If you're unable or not willing to spend more money on the more expensive Canon's new lens offerings or prime L lenses, I suggest keep the 7D and the two fantastic lenses you already owned.  If you do decide that you need full frame (btw, the bokeh is better in full frame), I suggest either save up for the 5DIII or switch to Nikon D600. Since you're going to have to sell and purchase everything, that's like starting from scratch, you might as well switch to Nikon.

So given these circumstances, is there something I would gain by going FF with a 5DII/6D with a 24-105/17-40 (that offsets my loss of fps) or should I wait until I can afford the 5DIII/24-70II/16-35II? I am sure many of you have gone this route- your advice will be greatly appreciated.

You gain image quality (lower noise, richer colors and contrast, better bokeh), larger and brighter viewfinder and more complicated AF system.  You will also gain larger file sizes.  You didn't ask about what you will lose but here it is - you will lose reach from your tele-lenses, lose the IR focus assist beam, lose the ability to trigger off camera flashes, need better lenses therefore you will lose money. Lose more money to replace the gadgets that you have on the 7D but will not have on the 5DII or 5DIII.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2012, 11:50:37 AM by christianronnel »
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Ew

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2012, 03:18:31 AM »
I have an APS-C setup with the 7D and 10-22 and 17-55 2.8. I have considered moving to FF with the recent reduction in prices of the 5DII and the 6D being announced, but here's the dilemma:
1. I am quite happy with the IQ of the 7D up to ISO 1600, but the noise above that is bad. So indoor photography without flash suffers. That is the main reason for my FF considerations.
2. I am aware that if I move to FF, I will have to trade my EF-S lenses for FF equivalents. My lenses will hold their value and I can get the 24-105 and 17-40 without losing any money (cannot afford the 24-70 II). But while the 24-105 is very good lens, I am not so sure about the 17-40. I didn't like the copy I owned (and I used it on a 5DII as well). And, I cannot afford the 16-35 II. Additionally, if I use f/4 after moving to FF- what do I gain over using f/2.8 in APS-C?:
3. I did like using the 5DII for the short time I had it and the images were very nice, especially since I almost exclusively use the center AF point, but I do use the high-speed mode a lot on my 7D and I will certainly miss it (and again, cannot afford the 5DIII).

So given these circumstances, is there something I would gain by going FF with a 5DII/6D with a 24-105/17-40 (that offsets my loss of fps) or should I wait until I can afford the 5DIII/24-70II/16-35II? I am sure many of you have gone this route- your advice will be greatly appreciated.

Foreword: my comments, are for the most part, lens agnostic.

 had the 7D for about 18 minths before jumping in on the 5D2.  The only reason was low light / high ISO noise. And this was a huge issue for me.

With the 5D2 I often found myself changing to a manual prefocusing strategy - and shooting more frames. And while that's more work, and more misses in high motion scenes, the keepers were brilliant.

While I had both bodies, the 10-22 was my only efs - so the transition was fairly easy (still haven't replaced that uwa).

Once I got my brain around the 5D2 tricks, I was using it 80/20 along with the 7D.

7D for good reach good light fast action, 5D2 for everything else.

5D3 is really the best of both worlds (less extra reach). I am constantly amazed how often I push to 12800 (even at 1.4), and get pleasing results.

My only regret with the 5D2 is that I did not take the FF plunge a couple of year earlier. 


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sach100

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2012, 03:24:33 AM »
I was in your exact place about a year ago so i think i can understand your situation.

First off, if i understand this correctly then f2.8 on 7d is more like f2.8*1.6 = f4.4ish on FF. Appreciate it if someone could correct me on this.

what did i do? well i din't want to compromise on the frame rate and the AF on 7d. so i waited out and bought the 5d3 last March. 6fps is way better than 3.7fps and the AF on 5d3 is from a different planet :)

I own both the 24-105 (came as a kit lens) and 17-40 (bought later). Agreed they are not the best of zooms around but if you are on a budget both these lenses allow you to do what you want to do. Obviously, PP can fix some of the issues. I was recently shooting at an university fashion show and i was consistently at iso3200ish with the 24-105 and the files were amazingly clean (which was not the case with my 7d).

My suggestion would be if you can wait then get the 5d3 - it 'll probably set you good for 2-3 years.
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christianronnel

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2012, 03:51:07 AM »

First off, if i understand this correctly then f2.8 on 7d is more like f2.8*1.6 = f4.4ish on FF. Appreciate it if someone could correct me on this.


I think you are correct.  The light gathering is the same for the lens,  if they are the same focal lengths.  For instance, a 31mm or 30mm lens on crop sensor will gather the same light as a 50mm lens on full frame, at the same aperture.  If you are using the exact same lens for crop sensor on a full frame camera, the focal length would be wider and more light will be gathered.  The bokeh or out of focus blur would also be affected by the crop factor.
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NormanBates

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2012, 04:17:00 AM »
I think anybody pondering the full frame move would benefit greatly from reading this blog post:
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2010/07/the-full-frame-move

Gothmoth

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2012, 05:05:21 AM »
why nobody mentions the viewfinder always suprises me.

composition with a APS-C viewfinder is cumbersome (at least that is my experience).

the larger viewfinder is one of the reasons i love to shoot FF.

the 7D has one of the best crop VF but still seems small after you use a FF.


i never use the pop-up flash.
whenever i decide to take the big DSLR with me i can pack a dedicated flash also.
the 270 EX II is not so much to carry and it´s way better then a popup flash.

that said... i have the 270 EX II but to be honest most of the time i take the bigger 430 EX II with me. well im a flash guy... like joe mcnally i feel naked without a speedlite.

i would not buy/use a P&S without a pop-up flash but for my DSLR´s i don´t care.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2012, 05:20:42 AM by Gothmoth »

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2012, 05:05:21 AM »

CTJohn

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2012, 08:12:06 AM »
I use the popup flash on my 7D solely to fire 3 speedlites set up on away from the camera.  I would greatly miss that capability if I were to go full frame, and don't feel like buying a very expensive speedlite to handle that function on the 5DIII or 6D.  I know it's not a professional way of using flash, but I'm not a professional and love the capability.
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joshmurrah

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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2012, 08:41:23 AM »
Quote
I almost exclusively use the center AF point

I am aware that if I move to FF, I will have to trade my EF-S lenses for FF equivalents.

7D up to ISO 1600, but the noise above that is bad.

These three statements tell me that yes, you want to jump to the 5D2.  Skip the 6D unless you want the gadgetry.

I made the exact same choice a few months ago, and have no regrets... my 7D is on eBay right now.

The experience I've had was approximately a 1.5 stop advantage in ISO noise, and a larrrrge difference in DOF in my everyday shooting, due to the focal length multiplier change.

Do yourself a favor and pick up a fast/cheap prime to play with if you swap, like the 50 1.4 or 85 1.8, you'll be amazed in the beauty of the DOF for portraiture.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2012, 08:55:51 AM by joshmurrah »
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Re: Would I benefit from going full frame?
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2012, 08:41:23 AM »