Mismatch: 80D vs 5D ii for Portraits?

Jul 8, 2017
22
0
#1
I'm enjoying a new to me 80D, and a Canon 50 f/1.8 ii for portraits. We also have the 24 f/2.8 and Younguo f/2 when there isn't enough space for the 50. A new friend told me she has the 5D ii, ii, and iv. She said she really loves the 5D ii for skin tone and texture in portraits. It looks like a 5D ii costs about the same as a Sigma 18-35 f1.8 sale price for my 80D. Any feel whether one would be superior for portrait photos?

I didn't expect to consider a body as a direct competitor to a new lens. I figure the 80D may have an edge in really low light recovery, but given decent light, which would be more desirable? I'm very curious what folks with more experience think, since I've never had a FF digital camera.
 

3kramd5

EOS 5D Mark IV
Mar 2, 2012
2,553
111
#2
The 5D will let you use the longer lens, which is typically more flattering, in limited space. I do a lot of wide angle portraiture (typically full body), but you have to take care to not massively distort the subject, keeping arms, legs, and faces away from frame edges for example.
 

Kit.

EOS Rebel SL2
Apr 25, 2011
501
133
#4
KevinP said:
I'm enjoying a new to me 80D, and a Canon 50 f/1.8 ii for portraits. We also have the 24 f/2.8 and Younguo f/2 when there isn't enough space for the 50. A new friend told me she has the 5D ii, ii, and iv. She said she really loves the 5D ii for skin tone and texture in portraits. It looks like a 5D ii costs about the same as a Sigma 18-35 f1.8 sale price for my 80D. Any feel whether one would be superior for portrait photos?
The 5D2 will allow you to use portrait lenses at a smaller distance to the subjects. The problem is... you have no portrait lenses to use yet.

However, the 5D2 will let you use your 50/1.8 where you would otherwise use a 35/1.4 on a crop sensor.

KevinP said:
I figure the 80D may have an edge in really low light recovery,
I doubt it. In really low light recovery, it's the photons that counts, and 5D series have twice as large sensor area to gather those photons.

However, the autofocus performance of a 5D2 in a really low light is close to nonexistent.
 

dak723

EOS Rebel T7i
Oct 26, 2013
939
79
#5
A 5D II is already an older camera that may have little life left before it begins to fail. You have the lenses for crop - go to FF and you would probably want an 85mm lens to go with it.

I see absolutely no reason to switch.
 
Jul 6, 2017
781
43
Davidson, NC
#6
dak723 said:
A 5D II is already an older camera that may have little life left before it begins to fail. You have the lenses for crop - go to FF and you would probably want an 85mm lens to go with it.

I see absolutely no reason to switch.
Exactly. A 50 mm lens on an 80D is like 80mm on a 5D in terms of the distance to the subject, which is what matters in portraits. I bought the 50mm f/1.4 to be my portrait lens on the T3i, which has the same sensor size. I currently use my 100mm macro for portraits on my FF camera or just the 24-105mm kit lens if I don’t need a blurrier background. If I shot a lot of portraits, I’d either buy an 85mm lens for the FF camera or use the T3i with the 50mm lens more often.

While the 5D II is still a serviceable camera, for most purposes I’d rather have the newer technology in the 80D.
 

Durf

Picture Taker - Image Maker
#7
KevinP said:
I'm enjoying a new to me 80D, and a Canon 50 f/1.8 ii for portraits. We also have the 24 f/2.8 and Younguo f/2 when there isn't enough space for the 50. A new friend told me she has the 5D ii, ii, and iv. She said she really loves the 5D ii for skin tone and texture in portraits. It looks like a 5D ii costs about the same as a Sigma 18-35 f1.8 sale price for my 80D. Any feel whether one would be superior for portrait photos?

I didn't expect to consider a body as a direct competitor to a new lens. I figure the 80D may have an edge in really low light recovery, but given decent light, which would be more desirable? I'm very curious what folks with more experience think, since I've never had a FF digital camera.
The 5D2 with a fast 85mm would probably work really well but I bet the 80D with the 50mm 1.8 would focus a lot faster/better. I've been using the 80D since it was released in 2016 and love the IQ it produces with good glass. I know I'd rather shoot with it rather than an older 5D2.

Right now my 70-300mm L Lens lives on my 80D 95% of the time and the IQ I get with this combination is remarkable. This combo does awesome portraits to if you can deal with the 112mm minimum focus crop. I have got some amazing portrait shots with this combo but using the 50mm 1.8 on the 80D for portraits would be tremendously more versatile.
 
Likes: stevelee
Jul 8, 2017
22
0
#8
Thanks for the notes. It sounds like 5Dii is a fine camera for portraits, but the niceties would be slim compared to a camera about 2 generations newer. And, no, I don't have an 85mm to pair with it. As much as I like the 35mm on my crop body, I wonder if the 50 would be more my style. Regardless, I'll rent or borrow a FF before I spring for one.

Kevin
 

Mt Spokane Photography

Spends too much time on this forum
Mar 25, 2011
14,482
64
#9
KevinP said:
Thanks for the notes. It sounds like 5Dii is a fine camera for portraits, but the niceties would be slim compared to a camera about 2 generations newer. And, no, I don't have an 85mm to pair with it. As much as I like the 35mm on my crop body, I wonder if the 50 would be more my style. Regardless, I'll rent or borrow a FF before I spring for one.

Kevin
A FF body will do very well, I stopped buying Crop bodies when the 5D MK II came out, finally, I bought a SL2 as a backup to my 5D MK IV, its not even a close match for image quality under demanding conditions, but with proper lighting, its pretty close. It is basically a cut down version of a 80D, the images should be the same. I bought a sigma 18-35 f/2.0 for the SL2. A waste of money, I don't think its all that good.
 

CanonFanBoy

EOS 6D Mark II
Jan 28, 2015
2,495
141
Irving, Texas
#10
For portraits? I got nearly all my L glass before switching to FF. I was shooting L glass on a 70D when I got the 5D Mark III (24-70, 70-200, 135mm, 400mm). To my eyes the FF difference makes all the difference. I don't buy into the "50mm on a crop camera is just like having an 80mm on FF" stuff. It isn't the same at all. Not to me it isn't.

Of course you will do what you like. For portraits a FF camera is the way to go in my opinion. And to those who say a 50mm isn't a portrait lens... I call BS. It is too.
 
Jul 22, 2011
29
2
#11
As much as I love 80D ... and i do, i would go with 5Dmk2 without giving it a second thought. I would avoid 6D and 5Dmk3, but i would go with 5Dmk2 because it has amazing skin tones, beautiful color rendition and its dirt cheap now days to get. Oh ... did i mention? Overall images for some weird reason seem sharper when doing portraits.
 

CanonFanBoy

EOS 6D Mark II
Jan 28, 2015
2,495
141
Irving, Texas
#12
As much as I love 80D ... and i do, i would go with 5Dmk2 without giving it a second thought. I would avoid 6D and 5Dmk3, but i would go with 5Dmk2 because it has amazing skin tones, beautiful color rendition and its dirt cheap now days to get. Oh ... did i mention? Overall images for some weird reason seem sharper when doing portraits.
If the skin tones are better on the 5D Mark II than the III, maybe I should scoop one up. I'd rather have that as a backup than a crop camera anyway.
 
Jul 22, 2011
29
2
#13
If the skin tones are better on the 5D Mark II than the III, maybe I should scoop one up. I'd rather have that as a backup than a crop camera anyway.
I own 5Dmk2, mk3 and mk4. I honestly wish Canon made 5D mark 2.5 instead of mk3 with same sensor as mk2 but only AF from mk3. I love mk2 my so much. Its my favorite camera out of all 3.
 
Likes: CanonFanBoy
Feb 16, 2013
66
1
#14
If you have a 80D, it make sense if you purchase a low shutter count 5Dii, at least I will if I need to.
Although 5Dii is old, but it did received a lots of testimonials and recognitions from photographers around the world.
The AF of 5Dii isn’t that good in low light compared to 80D or even 6D, and it will work well if on the good light.
Go ahead to buy one, I believe you will like it. Most importantly, your 50mm will become real 50mm. Some may argue 50mm on crop sensor will equivalent to 80mm in full frame kinds of thing, but it is not true. Even when framing will similar to 80mm on full frame, but the photo still carry the characteristics of 50mm. The bokeh, flattening, distortions are not same as 80mm on the full frame.
Anyway, it all depends your personal preference.
My 2 cents.
Thank you.
 
#15
I'm enjoying a new to me 80D, and a Canon 50 f/1.8 ii for portraits. We also have the 24 f/2.8 and Younguo f/2 when there isn't enough space for the 50. A new friend told me she has the 5D ii, ii, and iv. She said she really loves the 5D ii for skin tone and texture in portraits. It looks like a 5D ii costs about the same as a Sigma 18-35 f1.8 sale price for my 80D. Any feel whether one would be superior for portrait photos?

I didn't expect to consider a body as a direct competitor to a new lens. I figure the 80D may have an edge in really low light recovery, but given decent light, which would be more desirable? I'm very curious what folks with more experience think, since I've never had a FF digital camera.

Hi Kevin,

Whilst I may be a tad biased here I would pick up a 5D Mark II over the 80D. I am still working with them myself and have recently invested in a 3rd body.

A coupe of things that I prefer over any of the X0D range is ergonomics and build. The 5D feels much better and is better laid out for long days of shooting and it is a solid camera build wise.

The sensor just has something about it for skin tones and colour, it's hard to put in to words. The only Canon camera that I have used that beats it in this regard is the 5Ds/sR.

The AF is it's weakness asset but it won't stop you getting the job done. In low light it runs circles around a lot of these fancy new mirror-less bodies when you use the centre point. The outer points will kick your ass though.. they need the SUN as AF assist. :p

Low light/Noise - Ok it's lagging behind some compared to the 5DIV etc but it still holds it's own upto ISO 3200 and will still take on any of the latest Canon APS-C bodies. For me it's plenty and instead of investing in a £2500+ 5DIV I put money in to faster primes.

As much as I looked at the 5Ds before I picked up the 3rd 5DII I am glad I saved the money for now.

Skin Tones / Colour - It's hard to put in to words. It just has this look. Not like the original 5D look but looks less digital than the 5DIII.

I shoot a lot in studio but I love this sensor in natural light.

Most of the work on my site has been shot with a 5D II. If you want to look at some files give me a shout.

Rick
 
Last edited:
Likes: CanonFanBoy
Jul 22, 2011
29
2
#16
I agree with all people who said that 5D mk2 is amazing portrait camera. Its just something amazing with that body. Also 80D is chuck full of feature and is more then capable camera.

I would choose 80D as my second camera any day of the week, but as portrait camera ... 5D mk2, no doubt in my mind.
 
Likes: rjbradbury

Act444

EOS Rebel T7i
May 4, 2011
847
28
#17
I’ve never used the 5D2 but I technically prefer the FF look when it comes to portrait shots. Of course, this is not to say I haven’t gotten good results with a crop camera, but I’ve found it easier with FF. Shots are a bit crisper too, which makes any prints made a bit more vibrant/3D looking.

That said, in your situation would I go out of my way to jump to FF? Probably not. The 80D and 50mm shot “wide open” is already approximating the look of 85mm FF at 2.8. If you’re already happy, I’d stick with the status quo. I only made the jump to FF because I wanted more...