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Author Topic: Low light performance - which used Canon?  (Read 3767 times)
StuartPlant
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« on: February 16, 2010, 06:46:37 PM »
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Hi.... first post, so please be kind!

My background: For many years I've had a D70 with some kit lenses, and it's finally died after a great run of use and abuse - mostly sports and outdoor use - for fun or often taking images for use advertising businesses i've owned or worked for (none of which are photography). I have plenty of mates with Canon pro or semi-pro gear, and I've seen enough to know I'd like to make the switch when choosing the next DSLR.

I have an idea for some PJ-style shots i'd like to take, maybe even use to make a leap with and take things fractionally more seriously, and this idea is currently dominating the next gear purchase.

The only real criteria here is that they'll be taken in low-light without flash - inner city stuff. I also have a Panasonic LX3 and it's the reason in many ways that I've become addicted of late to the massive options that a wider angle, fast aperture lenses can present.

I'll have a limited budget with which to work with. Knowing the lenses I want, body-wise it's likely to stretch to either:
  • 2nd hand 5d Mark I
  • 2nd hand 1d Mark II
  • New 50D
Which is going to be best in low-light? I'd really like to move to full-format instead of 1.6x, primarily as I'll save more than enough on the lens side of the budget if I choose full-format, and if I like the Canon as much as I think I will, then stumping up for a 5D-II down the track would be my likely next option.

Which would you recommend? Any other factors to think of?
« Last Edit: February 16, 2010, 06:48:01 PM by StuartPlant » Logged
DarkPenguin
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« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2010, 10:51:12 PM »
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If you need a performance body the cameras will order 1d mk II, 50D (really?  how about a 40D or a 7D instead?) and 5d.  If you want high ISO performance those are probably reversed.
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2010, 02:16:13 AM »
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Quote from: StuartPlant
Hi.... first post, so please be kind!

My background: For many years I've had a D70 with some kit lenses, and it's finally died after a great run of use and abuse - mostly sports and outdoor use - for fun or often taking images for use advertising businesses i've owned or worked for (none of which are photography). I have plenty of mates with Canon pro or semi-pro gear, and I've seen enough to know I'd like to make the switch when choosing the next DSLR.

I would say that you are one war behind... the company with the strongest focus on low light shooting over the last 2 years is clearly Nikon.

A used D700 might be the best solution for your use and abuse considering its unique combination of excellent AF, compact body and very good high ISO image quality.

Cheers,
Bernard
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A few images online here!
fredjeang
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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2010, 03:26:46 AM »
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Quote from: BernardLanguillier
I would say that you are one war behind... the company with the strongest focus on low light shooting over the last 2 years is clearly Nikon.

A used D700 might be the best solution for your use and abuse considering its unique combination of excellent AF, compact body and very good high ISO image quality.

Cheers,
Bernard
True! Nikon is THE KING of low-light, and not only that but their image approach to me is more photographic, I find Canon to be more "clinical".

Fred.
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k bennett
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« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2010, 05:53:55 AM »
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The 1D Mark II shoots reasonably well at ISO 1600. The 5D is a little better. If you want great AF performance and shooting speed, the 1D2 is the way to go. If you want to be discreet, then the 5D is smaller and looks less threatening. I would buy a used 40D over a new 50D any day; the lower res provides better high-ISO performance. My 40D bodies come fairly close to the 1D2 at ISO 1600. Not perfect, and not D3 quality, but not bad.

(As an aside, I'm still shooting my 1D2 bodies, and the AF is great.)
« Last Edit: February 17, 2010, 05:56:02 AM by k bennett » Logged

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Mike Bailey
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« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2010, 06:58:02 AM »
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As a current owner and user of both the Canon 5D and the Nikon D700 - and I really like and appreciate both - the D700 is far superior to the 5D as far as higher ISO shooting.  This is not to detract from the 5D, which is good.  It's just that the D700 is better.  To compare, all else being equal, the 5D at ISO 400 is about what the D700 is at ISO 1600.  The suggestion to go with the a used D700 sounds pretty good!

Mike

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Mike Bailey
The Elemental Landscape
BlueRockPhotography.com

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StuartPlant
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« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2010, 08:30:35 PM »
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Thanks to all for the replies, all are very much appreciated, and have made for a great first impression of this place....

I've now thrown the D700 into the mix, having simply not been aware it's high-ISO capabilities were relatively so far in front.
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RichardGilbert
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« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2010, 07:19:22 PM »
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Hands down I'd get the 5D.
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Sgt. Richard V. Gilbert
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rcdurston
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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2010, 07:37:49 PM »
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Beg, borrow or steal the last bit and buy yourself a 5D mk2. I shoot jobs at 800, 1600 and 3200 all the time. It is truly remarkable. The old 40D/1Dmk2 series cant hold a flame to it. Don't know anything about Nikon except what I shoot on one o their local Nikon days and the D3 whatever just didnt cut it compared to the smoothness of the 5D mk2.
To say the least, I'm very happy with it.
r
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