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Author Topic: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?  (Read 11112 times)

digital paradise

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #15 on: February 13, 2013, 08:28:38 AM »
@wickidwombat: so you're talking about 3.5 stops in RAW from crop. That comes close. Coming from a 30D 1600 was highest I would dare to go in nightphotography (knowing there's some PP waiting). With the 5D3 now I go as high as 25.600 or 51200 without hesitation. Depending on your situation, even 51k without NR look quite usable  8)


Shooting my Cat at ISO 51k by Peter Hauri, on Flickr

That is not too bad at all. Anyone remember film? Bad grain (noise) at ISO 400. Digital has changed everything. I'd never go back.

I had no issues shooting my 5D2 at 6400 for important events if I had to. 12,800 would be a nice option with my 5D3. I'll have to check it out.

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #15 on: February 13, 2013, 08:28:38 AM »

J.R.

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #16 on: February 13, 2013, 08:47:32 AM »
I shot this at a dimly lit gaming arcade at ISO 10000 with the 5D3. Sure it has the slightest of grain if I pixel peep, but then I'm not printing billboards.

PS: NR in LR applied
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Dylan777

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2013, 09:15:48 AM »
Don't try to make a short cut - get a FF with 50, 85, 135 prime or 2.8 zoom for indoor shooting. f4 not gonna make it.
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docsmith

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2013, 09:54:11 AM »
I have owned the 7D and just bought the 5DIII.  So I am still putting the 5DIII through it's tests, but the 5DIII is easily better than the 7D for low light candids.  And I say that as a huge fan of the 7D.  The two main advantages are better control of noise at higher ISO, as already mentioned, but also, the 5DIII AF is sensitive down to -2 EV versus -0.5 EV for the 7D.  In other words, I can focus in deep shadows/near dark with the 5DIII (there is some hunting).  But the 7D AF would hunt all the time.

So, noise, color, and AF are the reasons to go with the 5DIII over the 7D for low light candids.

digital paradise

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #19 on: February 13, 2013, 10:00:46 AM »
1600 with 5D3. No NR.


steven kessel

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #20 on: February 13, 2013, 10:36:21 AM »
I have both cameras and I have to say that the 5D iii wins hands down in low light.  It's just no contest.  The camera has two huge advantages over the 7D. First, it offers far less noisy performance at higher ISOs.  I do mostly wildlife photography and I need fast shutter speeds, so my "go to" ISO on my 5D iii, even in broad daylight, is 640.  That gives me virtually noise free performance even with heavy cropping.  I wouldn't dream of using that high an ISO as a standard on my 7D.  On my 7D, 320 is standard.  Second, the autofocus on the 5D iii is infinitely superior in low light to that of the 7D. 

rcarca

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2013, 10:41:03 AM »
There is no doubt in my mind that the 5Diii is the far superior low/awkward light camera. I love my 7D to bits, but the 5Diii is superior by a long chalk in this regard. I am in the middle of a trip to Saudi Arabia and mainly get to take photographs after working hours. This is one example:

[/url]
2Y2A2798 by RCARCARCA, on Flickr

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2013, 10:41:03 AM »

pedro

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2013, 11:13:47 AM »
5DIII + 24-105/4L will deliver noticeably better low-light/high ISO IQ than 7D + 17-55/2.8.  For low light candids, I also agree that an f/2.8 or faster lens is the way to go. 

Personally, I prefer not to depend on IS in that situation - even if the camera is stable at 1/30 s (IS or tripod), subject motion is a problem, and especially in candids where subjects aren't 'holding still' for the camera (even in posed shots, I prefer at least 1/60 s).  On my 1D X, I use a minimum 1/125 s shutter for shooting people - and I let the ISO run up to 12800 with no worries.

+1 neuro. don't depend on IS either. anyway, your 1Dx surely must deliever excellent IQ beyond the 12800. I know for reasonable noisefree nighshots the 5D's limit is at about 5000 or 8000. There was a dude earlier this year who came up with a comparison to the 1Dx.
Two questions for neuro:
1) Did you take an ISO 204800 or 102400 photograph? I tried one at 102400, exposing well to the right (not a very dark room) and outcome was pretty well although it required quite some NR to make it look right.
102k no NR

Z96A0008aBWkNR ISO102400 no noisereduction by Peter Hauri, on Flickr
102k NR

Z96A0008aBWUsMaNR ISO102400 by Peter Hauri, on Flickr
2)What do you think can be expected from a 5DIV or 5DV (whatever they may call it) at hopefully about the same MP with an improved sensor design as the rumors are floating around? Will we see 51K or 102K IQ compared to what is now 25k IQ for the 5D series? Or let's say, will IQ at 102k improve at least half a stop or a as up to a whole stop in RAW until 2015 or 18? Thanks for your assessment on this according to your profound technical knowledge...
« Last Edit: February 13, 2013, 11:17:25 AM by pedro »
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7enderbender

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2013, 11:28:38 AM »
All the discussion in this forum about the 5D3 in low light has me intrigued.  I'm particularly interested in a 5D3 w/24-105 f4L IS as an upgrade path for a 7D w/17-55 f2.8 IS.  (For low light candids, I'm often shooting at 1/30 second and find IS to be a must.)

I know that the 5D3 offers greater color depth and that full frame is typically sharper than crop.  I also understand that the 5D3 offers about a 1.3 stop advantage in noise over the 7D.  But, I'm comparing a crop body with a 2.8 lens to the full frame with a 4.0 lens and this noise advantage drops to about 1/3 of a stop.

Now the question.  A 2.8 lens lets in more light than a 4.0, which is more light for the AF system to lock in.  So which system can lock in on focus at lower light -- the 5D3 w/24-105 f4L IS or the 7D w/17-55 f2.8L IS?


Quite frankly, I'm not exactly sure where you'd expect a big improvement worth $3000+ with that approach. I'm still on my 5DII and don't own either the 7D more the MarkIII but the question of "low light performance" and high ISO stuff wouldn't cross my mind as a top priority even though I actually shoot candids in ambient light situations quite often.

Lens/sensor size choices to me are primarily a matter of a) which (real) focal length do I want to use and b) how important are options for narrow depth of field. And even though I own the 24-105 the IS is not really part of the equation. Yes, it'll help a bit for those shots where you're at 1/30 or even less. Will it get you quality outcomes? Probably not. Camera shake is only one problem here and when photographing people it only saves  you to some degree - say it bumps a complete fail to a still usable snapshot which can of course be a good thing but is nothing I would want to count on a lot. Sorry, it's one of my pet peeves and I really don't like that everyone is now calling for IS-everything when that should really remain a feature for a) very long focal lengths and b) snapshot amateur cameras.

One more exception: the 24-105 I found to be a very capable concert photography lens where visible movement is actually desirable. Anything more formal? Eh, not really. Still prefer my 50 and 135 for low light candids.

The other thing is flash. I know some people don't like using it and there are of course circumstances where it's simply not an option. However, if possible I like using it even for those low light ambient candids. I put on half or full CTOs and try to keep as much of the ambient light as possible. With that even low(ish) shutter speeds give you good results - with the added benefit of catch lights which I like.

As far as higher ISO goes I find that anything up to 3200 easily works with these modern cameras and post processing gets rid of any issues that you may have. I personally don't mind a bit of grain and sometimes add film grain as opposed to cleaning things up.
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neuroanatomist

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2013, 11:32:33 AM »
1) Did you take an ISO 204800 or 102400 photograph? I tried one at 102400, exposing well to the right (not a very dark room) and outcome was pretty well although it required quite some NR to make it look right.

2)What do you think can be expected from a 5DIV or 5DV (whatever they may call it) at hopefully about the same MP with an improved sensor design as the rumors are floating around? Will we see 51K or 102K IQ compared to what is now 25k IQ for the 5D series? Or let's say, will IQ at 102k improve at least half a stop or a as up to a whole stop in RAW until 2015 or 18?

1) Nothing other than test shots in that range.  I do use ISO 25600 and that works fine, I haven't (yet) had a need to go higher.  To me, the ~2-stop advantage (considering both quantity and quality of noise) of the 1D X is maintained all the way up, so ISO 102400 looks about like ISO 25600 on the 5DII, and the latter was too high for me.  On the 5DII, ISO 3200 was my normal cap, ISO 6400 was for 'emergencies' - so I treat ISO 12800 and ISO 25600, respectively, the same.  But I did (very) occasionally use ISO 25600 on the 5DII, and so I will likely need ISO 102400 on the 1D X some day...

2) No idea.  The 1D X is better at the highest ISOs than the 5DIII (0.5-1 stop advantage, IMO), so that suggests there's a bit of room for improvement in the 5-series. 
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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #25 on: February 13, 2013, 11:41:08 AM »
I'd go with the 5D III and a fast prime, possibly the 50 1.4 or 85 1.8 depending on space. I like the 50mm it leaves a little room for cropping. I recently shot some low light candids at a very dimly lit restaurant and found even f/2 to be inadequate without really pushing the ISO. 1/30th won't give you many keepers. If you can use a speedlite off camera in a fixed location as you move around. You can also bounce off walls which help keep the subject relatively unaware.
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pedro

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #26 on: February 13, 2013, 11:53:30 AM »
1) Did you take an ISO 204800 or 102400 photograph? I tried one at 102400, exposing well to the right (not a very dark room) and outcome was pretty well although it required quite some NR to make it look right.

2)What do you think can be expected from a 5DIV or 5DV (whatever they may call it) at hopefully about the same MP with an improved sensor design as the rumors are floating around? Will we see 51K or 102K IQ compared to what is now 25k IQ for the 5D series? Or let's say, will IQ at 102k improve at least half a stop or a as up to a whole stop in RAW until 2015 or 18?

1) Nothing other than test shots in that range.  I do use ISO 25600 and that works fine, I haven't (yet) had a need to go higher.  To me, the ~2-stop advantage (considering both quantity and quality of noise) of the 1D X is maintained all the way up, so ISO 102400 looks about like ISO 25600 on the 5DII, and the latter was too high for me.  On the 5DII, ISO 3200 was my normal cap, ISO 6400 was for 'emergencies' - so I treat ISO 12800 and ISO 25600, respectively, the same.  But I did (very) occasionally use ISO 25600 on the 5DII, and so I will likely need ISO 102400 on the 1D X some day...

2) No idea.  The 1D X is better at the highest ISOs than the 5DIII (0.5-1 stop advantage, IMO), so that suggests there's a bit of room for improvement in the 5-series.

@neuro: Thanks a lot for that quick response! So I hope they keep the MP at least in the low 20's and manage to improve the sensors accordingly. I'd be happy with an overnext body and a 0.5 stop improvement in the ultra high ISOs in RAW (51200, 102400) and about 3/4 concerning ISO speeds of 12800 and 25600. We'll see. Enjoy your flagship cam! And maybe one day you might post your 102k emergency shot.  Maybe the next 5D will roll out with an 51k "native" ISO...8)
« Last Edit: February 13, 2013, 11:57:50 AM by pedro »
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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #27 on: February 13, 2013, 12:05:01 PM »
I have had two 7D's, two 5D MK II's, and two 5D MK III's as well as 1D MK II and 1D MK IV.  Of those models, the 7D had the most noise in low light.  I would avoid using it over ISO 800, but, with a lot of NR, and in good light, it can do ISO 3200 and look good at small sizes.
 
Although I do not like the numbers that DXO assigns to sensors, you can look at the individual test data and form your own opinion.  The test data seems accurate enough.
You can see that DXO rates ISO at 20% S/N and the 7D comes out to be 854, the 5D MK II is 1815, and the 5D MK III is 2293.  That's not the whole story,  the 5D MK III noise increases much more slowly than the other two models, so I can use ISO 25600 and have a viewable photo at small print size.\
http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/(appareil1)/795%7C0/(brand)/Canon/(appareil2)/619%7C0/(brand2)/Canon/(appareil3)/483%7C0/(brand3)/Canon
 
You can view the actual measurement plots for each body, and DR as well. 

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #27 on: February 13, 2013, 12:05:01 PM »

FTb-n

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2013, 02:35:48 AM »
Thank you all for the feedback.  The first-hand experience from those with both cameras is quite valuable.

I must say that I'm giving the 6D some more thought due to the feedback from this thread.  The price is certainly more attractive.  But, my primary subject matter is figure skating and middle-school level sports with the 70-200 f2.8L II.  Most of the time, I can shoot 1/500 or faster at ISO 1600-3200.  But, there are times when I need 6400.  I'd like any FF body that I get be able to handle the action and the 6D concerns me on this front.

My OOF rate with my 60D is much higher than with my 7D.  I attribute this to the 7D's focusing system and it's superior ability to track subjects.  The 7D seems much better at predictive focusing with AI Servo, especially when skaters don't always move in a straight line.  My fear is that that the 6D will have a similarly high OOF rate as my 60D has.

Another concern is burst mode.  I don't rely on it as a crutch for timing the shot, but I do use it and the buffer on the 60D will fill up on me.  The 7D has no problem keeping up.  Based on Canon's published max burst rates, the 6D looks very similar to the 60D.  (By the way, I think their published rates are higher than true rates when using AI Servo.)

I don't expect the 6D to track moving objects as well as the 7D, but can it do so better than the 60D?  Does its tracking ability fall between the 60D and 7D, if so where in between?
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sandymandy

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2013, 04:12:55 AM »
Save more and get 5Dmk3. Its just more versatile in the end and who knows what you gonna do in some years. 6D might lack features u wanna have that time. If you dont need the reach you could also sell your 7D.

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Re: 7D or 5D3 for low light candids?
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2013, 04:12:55 AM »