What about lenses for future R camera bodies?

ADW

Feb 25, 2021
4
1
I've posted this question over at 'Digital Photography Review', but I thought I might also open the discussion here as well.

My current camera, the 6DII, gives really good image quality at 26.2mp, and is worth its $1,400 price as an entry-level full-frame pro camera. I have no complaints with it. But I'd like to step up to the higher image quality of the R5, whose 45mp resolution shouldn't be too high for my L lenses to handle, even though they're not the absolute newest version. What throws a monkey wrench in all this is the rumored 90mp R5s (as it has popularly come to be known).

I'm convinced that the R5s will indeed be released, this year or next, if only because Canon is being pushed by Sony. Rumor has it that the price will be similar to the R5, which gives me the indication that the R5 will be for sports, wedding and newspaper/magazine photography, while the R5s would be for landscape/cityscape, fashion and architectural photography. As a serious amateur photographer, my main forte is the landscape/cityscape genre, so naturally I would be most interested in the R5s. But that leads me to ask about lenses.

How good would the processed RAW images from the R5s look when captured by my L lenses? Would they resolve the full 90mp quality, or would new lenses, built just for the R5s, be required. If the latter, then I'm not so sure I'd want the R5s, as the investment in new lenses just wouldn't be worth the extra image quality.

If anyone would like to venture a speculative opinion on this, I would certainly appreciate your input.
 

Joules

doom
CR Pro
Jul 16, 2017
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Hamburg, Germany
How good would the processed RAW images from the R5s look when captured by my L lenses?
Answering that would be alot easier if you had told us what L lenses you have ;)

In general, the higher resolution body will deliver more detail than the R5, especially in the image center. As you go out into the edges, older designs or zoom lenses may show a lesser degree of improvement. It is worth keeping in mind that a higher resolution sensor will always capture at least as much detail as a lower resoultion one, and usually more unless you are heavily diffraction limited. Especially since the high resolution R will have a newer sensor and maybe even newer technology.
 

ADW

Feb 25, 2021
4
1
Joules, thank you for your reply. Following is the list of my L lenses, as well as others...

1. Canon EF 16-35mm f4 L IS USM No visible manufacturing date, but there appears to be a code: 2100001149
2. Canon EF 24-70mm zoom f2.8 L IS I believe I may have bought it as much as ten years ago, or slightly longer.
3. Canon EF 100-400mm zoom f4-5.6 L IS, not the latest version (Also has the 1.4 extender, and I wonder how that might affect image quality.)

Non-L lenses
1. Canon EF 100mm macro f2.8
2. Sigma 50-500 f4-6.3 zoom lens (The 2x extender will let it reach 1,000mm, but I'm frightened to think of the possible distortion.)

Of course, these lenses work perfectly with the 6DII, and I'm thinking that for the most part they should be fine with the 45mp R5. But I'm wondering if their resolution may be too limited for the rumored R5s and its expected 90mp sensor. If resolution increase on a single-sheet print size from my Epson SureColor P800 of 24x16 showed only a minimal improvement with the R5s over the R5, using my current lenses, it seems to me that it would make more sense to invest in the R5, whose feature-set may be more appealing to me. Upgrading to higher-quality L lenses for the R5s could cost more money than I could comfortably handle.

Thank you for your response to this letter; your input will be valuable to me.
 

Czardoom

EOS 90D
Jan 27, 2020
178
398
In my opinion, speculation in this case is worthless. The only way to answer your questions and speculate is to wait until the R5s is released. And at that time, the thing to do will be to rent one - and possibly the R5, too. My main question would be, are you shooting hand-held or with a tripod? Are you printing at a certain size? You may find your images don't look any different between the R5 and your 26 MP 6D II. You may find llittle or no difference between the R5 and the R5s. I have found hand-held shots are limited by the ability to hold the camera still. That's just my experience, so keep that in mind - your results may differ completely. But you won't know until you actually try it out.
 

ADW

Feb 25, 2021
4
1
In my opinion, speculation in this case is worthless. The only way to answer your questions and speculate is to wait until the R5s is released. And at that time, the thing to do will be to rent one - and possibly the R5, too. My main question would be, are you shooting hand-held or with a tripod? Are you printing at a certain size? You may find your images don't look any different between the R5 and your 26 MP 6D II. You may find llittle or no difference between the R5 and the R5s. I have found hand-held shots are limited by the ability to hold the camera still. That's just my experience, so keep that in mind - your results may differ completely. But you won't know until you actually try it out.
Thanks for your input. With only occasional forays into creating composite images, most of my work concerns landscape/cityscape and texturized imaging, using PS and enhancement programs such as On1 RAW 2021, Luminar AI, and Topaz. I always use a tripod, and if possible will use a 5-second timer to minimize camera shake. Much of the time I will bracket at 2 stop intervals, processing in either Aurora or Photomatix, and that helps to make up for the 6DII's lack of sufficient dynamic range. Those images that I find good enough for printing are printed at sizes ranging from 18x12 to 24x16 on my Epson SureColor P800. While I have no doubt that the R5 color accuracy is superior to the 6DII, I have to wonder how many viewers will actually notice.

It seems to me that the only intelligent course to follow is to rent out an R5 this spring, and use it with my lenses. But I'm certainly not going to buy. I believe that by next spring the R5s will be released, and I can do a comparison test among all three cameras. That seems to me to be a lot wiser than to invest what will amount to as much as $4,900 (including tax) for a Canon camera, battery grip, extra batteries and memory cards. Although I'm asking for speculative opinions, I think that a lack of patience now could lead to extreme disappointment later.
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
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Mar 25, 2011
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It does not matter what the lens is, the R5 will improve the image resolution. That's just physics. I found the improvement to be enough so that I noticed it on all my lenses. I attribute that to the increase in MP. I was previously using both EF and RF lenses on my R and my 5D MK IV. The most noticeable improvement was on a 50mm f/2.5 that I kept on my R due to its small size. It was almost as though a veil were lifted. The L lenses did not show such a big improvement.

So, if you can afford it, get a R5 and keep using your existing lenses until you see a need to replace them. If you have a DSLR, increased IQ might also come from more accurate focusing, but only when there are horizontal features for the camera to focus on. A future quad pixel sensor will bring another boost to AF capability.
 

Joules

doom
CR Pro
Jul 16, 2017
1,527
1,810
Hamburg, Germany
So, if you can afford it, get a R5 and keep using your existing lenses until you see a need to replace them. If you have a DSLR, increased IQ might also come from more accurate focusing, but only when there are horizontal features for the camera to focus on. A future quad pixel sensor will bring another boost to AF capability.
If I understood correctly, the OP is asking whether they should wait for the high resolution R rumored to be called R5's and released sometime this year, rather than get an R5 right away.

In that context, your experience with improved resolution could also be twisted into an argument against the R5 and for the 'R5s'.

As the OP uses a 6D II, it's not a question if they will see a massive jump in IQ. Just in terms or DR and noise that's absolutely the case, and almost doubling the resolution in the case of the R5 would definitely improve overall IQ.

@ADW I don't have personal experience with any of these lenses, but as they all appear to be version one lenses it is safe to say that the RF versions would perform better. The real question is whether for your use cases you would get enough of a benefit to compensate the compromises - But as of right now we have no idea what those may even be. For all we know, the R5s may just be a straight upgrade over the R5. Really the only potential downsides are FPS (At twice the resolution of the R5, it would do 10 FPS if they kept the throughput the same) and price.

You say you print 24" X 16" with your 26 MP 6D II? That means you print at 260 dpi currently. The R5 would allow you take that to 340 and the R5s to 480. If printing is your main concern, you could at least evaluate that even today without purchasing any new product.

Either stitch a 3X3 panorama of 9 6D II frames to get to above 90 MP total resolution (Assuming 33% overlap) and print that at 340 dpi to simulate a R5 and 480 dpi to simulate an R5s. If you don't see a noteworthy difference from your desired viewing distance, the bottleneck is your print size, regardless of your lens.

If you do see a difference (or crop frequently) the follow up investigation by renting both models once available makes sense to get a real impression of the difference.
 

ADW

Feb 25, 2021
4
1
If I understood correctly, the OP is asking whether they should wait for the high resolution R rumored to be called R5's and released sometime this year, rather than get an R5 right away.

In that context, your experience with improved resolution could also be twisted into an argument against the R5 and for the 'R5s'.

As the OP uses a 6D II, it's not a question if they will see a massive jump in IQ. Just in terms or DR and noise that's absolutely the case, and almost doubling the resolution in the case of the R5 would definitely improve overall IQ.

@ADW I don't have personal experience with any of these lenses, but as they all appear to be version one lenses it is safe to say that the RF versions would perform better. The real question is whether for your use cases you would get enough of a benefit to compensate the compromises - But as of right now we have no idea what those may even be. For all we know, the R5s may just be a straight upgrade over the R5. Really the only potential downsides are FPS (At twice the resolution of the R5, it would do 10 FPS if they kept the throughput the same) and price.

You say you print 24" X 16" with your 26 MP 6D II? That means you print at 260 dpi currently. The R5 would allow you take that to 340 and the R5s to 480. If printing is your main concern, you could at least evaluate that even today without purchasing any new product.

Either stitch a 3X3 panorama of 9 6D II frames to get to above 90 MP total resolution (Assuming 33% overlap) and print that at 340 dpi to simulate a R5 and 480 dpi to simulate an R5s. If you don't see a noteworthy difference from your desired viewing distance, the bottleneck is your print size, regardless of your lens.

If you do see a difference (or crop frequently) the follow up investigation by renting both models once available makes sense to get a real impression of the difference.
Joules, your post is the best that I could have ever gotten for answering my concerns on image quality, and the feasibility of moving up to a higher-grade camera for my desires.

As you've pointed out, printing at 24x16 on my Epson P800 requires a dpi level that my 6DII can't reach. According to charts I've accessed, a print of that size requires 35 megapixels, which the R5 can attain without any strain. With that information, I have to determine where to go from here. For this middle-class retiree, spending my money wisely is crucially important, as investing in an R5 system, (camera body, battery grip, extra batteries and new memory cards) tax included will run me up to $4,800 USD, no small amount of money.

And then, of course, I have to ask one of the most important questions--at 24x16 will a 90mp sensor produce a decisively more detailed print than the R5 is capable of, or will the printer simply discard pixels it doesn't need at that size? If the image quality of the rumored R5s is not noticeably, or subjectively decisively, superior to the R5, it would seem to make no sense for me to go beyond the R5.

But assuming that I decide to invest in an R5 system at some point this year, I could only do it in piecemeal fashion. First would come the camera body and memory cards, followed by the battery grip and extra batteries, then a sufficient number of memory cards, followed finally by the gradual purchase of R lenses. (I would not sell off my current lenses, because I would be using the 6DII as an emergency backup.)

The good news in all this is that I'm quite healthy for my senior age, and my doctor has told me I should have no trouble getting a part-time job when I've received my full vaccine inoculation. Time is required here, in more ways than one, and being as sure as possible in a future strategy can't be overstated.

Thanks again for the time you've taken to provide your input.
 
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Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Mar 25, 2011
16,601
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Joules, your post is the best that I could have ever gotten for answering my concerns on image quality, and the feasibility of moving up to a higher-grade camera for my desires.

As you've pointed out, printing at 24x16 on my Epson P800 requires a dpi level that my 6DII can't reach. According to charts I've accessed, a print of that size requires 35 megapixels, which the R5 can attain without any strain. With that information, I have to determine where to go from here. For this middle-class retiree, spending my money wisely is crucially important, as investing in an R5 system, (camera body, battery grip, extra batteries and new memory cards) tax included will run me up to $4,800 USD, no small amount of money.

And then, of course, I have to ask one of the most important questions--at 24x16 will a 90mp sensor produce a decisively more detailed print than the R5 is capable of, or will the printer simply discard pixels it doesn't need at that size? If the image quality of the rumored R5s is not noticeably, or subjectively decisively, superior to the R5, it would seem to make no sense for me to go beyond the R5.

But assuming that I decide to invest in an R5 system at some point this year, I could only do it in piecemeal fashion. First would come the camera body and memory cards, followed by the battery grip and extra batteries, then a sufficient number of memory cards, followed finally by the gradual purchase of R lenses. (I would not sell off my current lenses, because I would be using the 6DII as an emergency backup.)

The good news in all this is that I'm quite healthy for my senior age, and my doctor has told me I should have no trouble getting a part-time job when I've received my full vaccine inoculation. Time is required here, in more ways than one, and being as sure as possible in a future strategy can't be overstated.

Thanks again for the time you've taken to provide your input.
The size of printed image question is seldom a crucial factor. There were beautiful images made in very large format prints with 12 MP cameras. Unless you are selling images for a very special audience, I would not worry about native print size. Images can be upsized very nicely for mere mortals. The ability to crop and still get detailed images is a practical benefit. Of course, its great to have that extra resolution, I love it, but I might not see the difference in a large print unless very close to it. Content is much more important.
 

Ph0t0

EOS M50
Mar 27, 2015
48
25
Joules, thank you for your reply. Following is the list of my L lenses, as well as others...

1. Canon EF 16-35mm f4 L IS USM No visible manufacturing date, but there appears to be a code: 2100001149
2. Canon EF 24-70mm zoom f2.8 L IS I believe I may have bought it as much as ten years ago, or slightly longer.
3. Canon EF 100-400mm zoom f4-5.6 L IS, not the latest version (Also has the 1.4 extender, and I wonder how that might affect image quality.)

Non-L lenses
1. Canon EF 100mm macro f2.8
2. Sigma 50-500 f4-6.3 zoom lens (The 2x extender will let it reach 1,000mm, but I'm frightened to think of the possible distortion.)

Of course, these lenses work perfectly with the 6DII, and I'm thinking that for the most part they should be fine with the 45mp R5. But I'm wondering if their resolution may be too limited for the rumored R5s and its expected 90mp sensor. If resolution increase on a single-sheet print size from my Epson SureColor P800 of 24x16 showed only a minimal improvement with the R5s over the R5, using my current lenses, it seems to me that it would make more sense to invest in the R5, whose feature-set may be more appealing to me. Upgrading to higher-quality L lenses for the R5s could cost more money than I could comfortably handle.

Thank you for your response to this letter; your input will be valuable to me.
If you are thinking of buying a new higher MP camera I would definitly advise you to update the 24-70, 100-400 and 50-500mm.
Those lenses are old, don not that sharp, have lots of CA, and slower Af motors.
I noticed quite a difference when I replaced those lenses with newer versions even on 20MP and 18MP bodies. When using them on 5DSr the difference was even more obvious.

(and by the way- I'm pretty sure your 24-70mm 2.8 doesn't have IS, which is another thing you gain if you go for the RF 24-70mm)
 

Joules

doom
CR Pro
Jul 16, 2017
1,527
1,810
Hamburg, Germany
The size of printed image question is seldom a crucial factor. There were beautiful images made in very large format prints with 12 MP cameras. Unless you are selling images for a very special audience, I would not worry about native print size. Images can be upsized very nicely for mere mortals. The ability to crop and still get detailed images is a practical benefit. Of course, its great to have that extra resolution, I love it, but I might not see the difference in a large print unless very close to it. Content is much more important.
I was just commenting on the OPs statement "Those images that I find good enough for printing are printed at sizes ranging from 18x12 to 24x16 on my Epson SureColor P800. While I have no doubt that the R5 color accuracy is superior to the 6DII, I have to wonder how many viewers will actually notice", trying to point out how they could test whether or not a difference could be observed without waiting for and eventually renting the high resolution R ('R5s').

I also wrote: "If you do see a difference (or crop frequently) the follow up investigation by renting both models once available makes sense to get a real impression of the difference."

Given that the OP describes most of their work as landscape/citiscape and tripod work, cropping doesn't seem to be such a concern though.

At the moment, we have literally no idea what about the high resolution R will be different from the R5 other than the resolution. If it does get some new sensor technolgoy, like quad pixel AF, or a global shutter, or dual gain, that adds points to consider for chosing between it and an R5, for example. Speculation about this is based on nothing at this point though, so comparing the bottleneck the printing and viewing process imposes would at least give the OP some practical reference for what to expect in a best case scenario.
 
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