Just picked up the 5D3 this week and got some time to fiddle with it last night.
Upgrading from a 30D I am overwhelmed by the results as I went for the high ISOs 6.4k-102.4k!
a) My first impression:
The 5d3 vs the 30D delievers about 4 stops better high ISOs in RAW, which to me is a huge step!
51.2k without NR still seems to look better than ISO 3200 on a 30D, both exposed to the right.
ISO 12800 is a no brainer now! Even without NR, if well exposed.
Even a 102.4k image is kind of "doable", although with some heavy NR, but I am geared toward Robert Capa and Robert Frank Style photography, so there is no problem with some noise for me. I do everything in DPP and convert b/ws using an old CS2.
The 5D3 is absolutely worth its money from my point of view and a tremendous camera!
b) What will be the standard high ISO level after the 2 next bodycycles of the 1 and 5 series?
Is it likely, that my extended ISO 102.4k will be the ISO 12.800 or 25600 6-8 years from now, then we would talk about extended ISOs on a 5Dwhatever up to H1 204.8 (like 1Dx now) and H2 409.6k
A 1Dwhatever would even break the million mark by then going up as high as ISO 1.638.400!
Whoever will benefit from such a high ISO...
Does all that seem likely according to porbable upcoming sensor tech improvements or is that too much of wishful thinking?
I am not too much into tech. So, what do you think? Any corrections and contrary/more realistic input is highly appreciated.
Anyway, the 5D3 rocks!
It seems that any new camera body is two stops better than the previous one, but these "improvements" don't apply additively (e.g. 3 generations of camera doesn't bring a 6 stop improvement).
More realistically, DxOMark shows the 5DIII as about 2 stops better than the 30D. The 5DIII gets an extra 4/3 of a stop because of the larger full frame sensor, so technology has only moved by about 2/3 of a stop.
If it were the case that technology has really improved by 1.5 stops or more, the new APS-C bodies would have better image quality than the 5DC.
So to answer your question, I'd say 6 years from now, another 2/3 of a stop improvement in ISO performance. In terms of how much ISO can be turned up, it wouldn't surprise me if you can more or less turn it up as high as you want.