Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Last update (20 April’13):
- Canon 5D Mark II vs Canon 7D Field Test Hands-on Review Vide by DigitalRev
- New Firmware Version 2.0.4

Canon EOS 5D Mark II (announced 17 September’08) is a full-frame DSLR camera with a newly designed 21MP Canon CMOS sensor, DIGIC 4, ISO 50-25,600, Live view mode, HD Video Capability allowing users to shoot video at full 1080 resolution at 30fps, 3.9 fps continuous shooting, 9 AF points + 6 Assist AF points, GPS Compability, and a 3.0″ VGA (920k dots) clear view LCD.

canon-5d-mark2
Overall Rating: ★★★★½


Expert Reviews

Canon 5D Mark II Reviews

Canon 5D Mark II vs Canon 7D Field Test Hands-on Review Vide by DigitalRev;

KenRockWell compares Nikon D700 to Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“If choosing between the D700 and 5D Mark II for news, sports and action, the Nikon D700 is better because of its superior autofocus system and higher overall speed. If you’re shooting in low light, the D700′s autofocus system works much better than the AF system of the 5D Mark II. If you have to carry it all day, the 5D Mark II weighs much less.”
Rating: N/A

Photocracti reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Buy it. If you’re upgrading from the original 5D, you’ll find the enhancements well worth it. If you’re new to full-frame DSLRs, this is certainly the right step to take….”
Rating: N/A

KenRockwell compares the Leica M9 vs Canon 5D Mark II and writes;
“Overall, the Leica wins because of its great sensor coupled with Leica’s superior optics. Canon’s 21MP sensor is about as good, but the end results only match if you could get lenses this good for the Canon — which you can’t do at most focal lengths.”
Rating: N/A

CameraTown compares the EOS 7D to EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“The EOS 5D Mark II clearly has a shallow DOF due to the larger sensor, but both cameras produced nearly identical sharpness at the focal point..”
Rating: N/A

InfoSync reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
” Colors were fantastic and sharpness out of the box was superb. The Canon Eos 5D Mark II can shoot weddings, but it can also produce professional images for a variety of photographic applications. Furthermore, the HD video quality could definitely be used as B-roll for a feature film. “
Rating: ★★★★½

PhotographyReview reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“The Canon EOS 5D Mark II image quality kicks ass. This camera produces beautiful, detailed images with subtle tonal blends and great color…. If you have $2,700 burning a hole in your pocket, the 40D or 50D and a pro lens are probably a better way to spend your money”


Rating: N/A

RegHardware reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“As a DSLR, it’s a real upgrade from the old 5D. It’s easier to navigate and produces better images, thanks to a hefty megapixel count. While it appears reassuringly expensive, when you consider what you are getting, it doesn’t really seem that much. After all, the EOS 5D MkII is a great all-rounder. It’s not even Canon’s flagship model, but at the moment, nothing can catch it”
Rating: ★★★★½

PocketLint reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Canon’s EOS 5D Mk II refreshes the original 5D in light of stiff competition. The feature-rich 5D Mk II boasts an in-vogue and rather superb 1080p HD movie mode but looks very pricey”
Rating: ★★★★½

DCR reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Colors are accurately and naturally rendered and, for the most part, exposures are spot on. Dynamic range is quite good as well.. With an expanded light sensitivity range from 50-25,600, the 5D Mark II does an excellent job of keeping noise levels (and noise reduction softening) to a minimum.”
Rating: N/A

PhotographyBay reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“I have felt pretty comfortable using the 5D Mark II up to ISO 3200 in just about any shooting situation when the available light has called for it. Additionally, I think that ISO 6400 is still very usable in many circumstances.. the 5D Mark II is by far the best bang-for-buck DSLR that Canon has ever produced… “
Rating: N/A

NeutralDay reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“It offers higher resolution than the Nikon D700, though somewhat lower than the Sony A900. It compares favorably to the Nikon D700 in ISO performance (no small feat) and easily exceeds that of the A900….Quite simply it’s an amazing camera, and the Canon EOS 5D Mark II easily earns a: “Highly Recommended” “
Rating: Highly Recommended

CNET.au reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“overall image quality is incredibly impressive. We expected to see Canon’s typical punchy hues as well as accurate and smooth tonality, and the camera doesn’t fail to deliver. There is, however, some aggressive noise reduction that comes into play at ISO 3200 and above…”
Rating: ★★★★½

DCRP reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“All things considered, the Canon EOS-5D Mark II is a very impressive digital SLR. For the Canon enthusiast who wants to step up to a full-frame body, it’s an excellent choice. I’m not quite sure that it’s the ideal camcorder replacement, due to the lack of continuous AF when you’re recording a movie.”
Rating: N/A

TomsGuide reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“with the camera set to ISO 100 through 400, we found no disturbing indications of excessive noise in the images. With the camera set to ISO 800 or 1600, we did start to pick up noticeable noise in our images. Set it to ISO 3200 or 6400, and you can expect marked increase in noise levels… “
Rating: N/A

LuminousLandscape reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“While shots up to 1600 are remarkably ‘clean’, there are traces of noise. Moreover, my subjective impression is that higher ISO shots are less malleable, ‘fracturing’ into digital artifacts and solarization after less manipulation than shots at lowers ISOs. “
Rating: N/A

GoodGearGuide reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“The Canon EOS 5D Mark II is well suited to photographers who want to crop in to fine details in their photos, or who just want to shoot and print very large landscapes and portraits. We do wish some of its controls were better implemented, but it’s not hard to use once you get used to it..”
Rating: ★★★★☆

Steve Huff reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“For owners of the 5D, 40D or 50D who want to upgrade without going to a 1d series body, the 5DMKII is a WINNER. I could find no faults in its operation or image quality. Just the AF tracking on fast moving subjects. “
Rating: N/A

Gizmodo.au compares the Canon EOS 5D Mark II to Nikon D700 and writes;
“In the end, for me, I give the trophy to the 5D Mark II for the 1080p video. It’s got its drawbacks, sure, but being able to switch seamlessly from stills to beautiful movies with my awesome 35mm DSLR lens is just too good to be true.”
Rating: N/A

MacWorld reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Pros: Great image quality; expanded ISO range; HD video; great interface. Cons: New RAW modes have a slight color shift; cheaper cameras available with larger feature set.”
Rating: ★★★★½

Photo.net reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“I can certainly recommend it to anyone who wants a “state of the art” full frame DSLR. If I could afford one and I didn’t already have too many cameras, I’d buy one myself! “
Rating: N/A

DCI reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“testing revealed exceptional image sharpness and color accuracy, with acceptable automatic white balance results and outstanding custom white balance accuracy..”
Rating: N/A

WDC reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Nikon and Sony are hardly taking this lying down, but they certainly have a fight on their hands, because in our estimation the EOS 5D Mark II is, all things considered, probably the best ever Canon DSLR.”
Rating: ★★★★½

LetsGoDigital reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“The A3+ and A2 sized prints show an amazing amount of detail. Noise ratio is excellent; ISO 3200 is fine at A3+ format and ISO 1600 is no problem for an A2 sized print.”
Rating: N/A

ImagingResource reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“High quality is one thing, but being a camera that can deliver high quality over a wide range of lighting conditions and different ISO settings is what makes the Canon 5D Mark II such a compelling choice, and a clear Dave’s Picks.”
Rating: N/A

CNET reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“A great follow-up to the 5D and top-flight full-frame camera, the Canon EOS 5D Mark II delivers the fluid shooting experience and fine photos you expect from a professional model.”

Rating: ★★★★☆

Steve’sDigicams reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“With superb image quality and performance, the new 5DMk2 can confidently continue to fill the gap between Canon’s entry/consumer-level and all out pro dSLR models… “
Rating: N/A

B&H reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Priced under $2700, the Canon EOS 5D Mark II is an impressive camera that enables the user to capture monstrous, pro-quality still and video image files for far less than half the price of Canon’s flagship EOS 1Ds Mark II…. “
Rating: N/A

DigitalTrends reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Shooting indoors in a dimly lit room at 25,600 ISO is a bad move—especially if you want an 8.5×11 print; it’s a pixilated mess. Dropping down to 12,800, the results were much better… 6400 was surprisingly good, as was 3200, which is about the limit we’d go for a fairly noise-free image for a large print.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

TheDigitalPicture reviews the Canon EOS 5D MK II and writes;
“5D II delivers excellent image quality from a solid-performing body. It is a great body for beginning photographers with big aspirations. It is a great upgrade to all owners of non-1-Series bodies – and even some 1-Series body owners are going to want one. I enthusiastically recommend the Canon EOS 5D Mark II. “
Rating: N/A

LuminousLandscape compares the Canon EOS 5D MK II to Sony A900 and writes;
” If you have very small hands then the 5D MKII is probably the preferable camera from a handling point of view. For those with larger hands, or who shoot with gloves on a great deal, the A900 might be a better choice.”
Rating: N/A

CameraLabs reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Starting with image quality, the EOS 5D Mark II is capable of delivering fantastic-looking images, that are packed with detail…we’re holding back on our final scores and rating until Canon makes an official announcement, which we hope to hear very soon. Should the EOS 5D Mark II be easily fixed and the black dots avoided, we’ll be able to Highly Recommend it”


Rating: N/A

CNET.asia reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Overall, we have been very pleased with the images the 5D Mark II produced, and it has definitely met the benchmark which Nikon has set with the D3 and the D700. Colors from the Canon were accurate at default settings, and the white balance was spot on under the different lighting conditions we shot in. ”
Rating: ★★★★☆

PhotoReview reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“For most serious photographers, however, the real strengths of the 5D II will be its versatility and ability to record high-quality still images and, in this field, it will match – or better – most rivals. ”
Rating: ★★★★½

PopPhoto reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Color? In our testing protocols, anything below 8.0 is Excellent. The Canon scored 6.3. This beats both the Nikon D700 and Sony A900. ”
Rating: N/A

KenRockwell reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“Unlike Nikons, which don’t get any sharper at 100% when set to smaller resolution files, M and L files form the 5D mark II are super, duper sharp. ”
Rating: N/A

ArtbyPhil reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“The body and autofocus alone make it my camera of choice. However, if I shot more street work, shot weddings, or just needed to finally get rid of that pesky Canon D30 finally, I’d say the 5D Mark II is a great buy”
Rating: N/A

DigitalProTalk reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“I can’t wait to permanently get my hands on this baby. The phenomenally high ISO capabilities promise some unbelievable benefits especially to us event shooters… It’s an easy two “Thumbs Up” for me!.”
Rating: N/A

DigitalJournalist reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“It is a superb still camera, at a reasonable price, and can do wonderful things within reason. Canon should be congratulated on coming so far in creating a new hybrid for photography, and we are confident this is only the first step in totally redefining how photographers work.”
Rating: N/A

Bebbblog reviews the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and writes;
“we tried out ISO 12800 and 25600 (which I have dubbed ‘supersonic’) and were very impressed with the results… To summarize: the 5D MkII will quickly become the camera of choice for wedding photographers. It has all the features that we need,..”
Rating: N/A

Canon EOS 5D Mark II Preview video by DSLRUser;

Canon EOS 5D Mark 2 Overview Video

Samples

Canon 5D Mark II Sample Images

- Canon 5D Mark II Sample Images: 123 @ InfoSync
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ PhotographyReview
- Canon 5D Mark II Sample Images: 123 @ DCR
- Canon 5D Mark II Sample Images: 123 @ PhotographyBay
- Canon 5D Mark II Sample Images: 123 @ NeutralDay
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ DCRP
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ Steve Huff
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ DCI
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ WDC
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ ImagingResource
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ CNET
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ Steve’sDigicams
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ CNETAsia
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ CameraLabs
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ PopPhoto
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ KenRockwell
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ CameraLabs (ISO 50-25600)
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ ImagingResource
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ PhotographyBlog
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ Canon
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Images @ Dpreview
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II VS Nikon D7000 Sample Image @ ISO 6400
- Canon EOS 5d MK II Sample Images @ Flickr
- Canon EOS 5D MK II Sample Images (High ISO 6400-25600)
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Landscape Image
- Canon EOS 5D Mark II Sample Portrait Image

eos_5d_mk2-iso25600-crop-image
Canon EOS 5D Mark II ISO 25600 @ 12.5%
eos_5d_mk2-iso25600-crop-image
Canon EOS 5D Mark II ISO 25600 @ 100%


Canon 5D Mark II Sample Videos


Riverie: shot with a pre-production Canon EOS 5D Mark II digital SLR. The files used to create this video were not manipulated in any way, only re-compressed for ¼ resolution display on our website. [watch high quality]


EOS 5D Mk II Test Video: click Watch in High Quality to see better video


EOS 5D Mk II Test Video: click Watch in High Quality to see better video

- 8 Canon 5D Mark II Sample Video @ Canon
- 8 Canon 5D Mark II Sample Videos @ 5D Microsite

Manual

Canon 5D Mark II User Manual (PDF)

Click to view or right click and select Save Target As..(Firefox) or Save link as.. (IE) to download

- Download Canon EOS 5D Mark II User Manual (PDF – 6.07 MB)
- Download Canon EOS 5D Mark II Pocket Guide (PDF – 1.40 MB)

Canon 5D Mark II Firmware

Download EOS 5D MarkII Firmware Update Version 2.0.4

Version 2.0.4 firmware, the following phenomena that occurred with the Version 2.0.3 firmware (which was to enhance the movie functions) have been corrected.
* There was a phenomenon in which the manual recording settings made in C1/C2/C3 were changed and sound could not be recorded if manual sound recording was used in the C1/C2/C3 settings and the camera was subsequently turned off (or if Auto Power Off was activated). This does not occur in modes other than C1/C2/C3. The Version 2.0.4 firmware includes the movie function enhancements listed in items 1 through 5 below, and also incorporates the correction listed in item 6.
1. Adds or changes the following movie frame rates
NTSC:
1920×1080:30 fps (changed – actual 29.97fps)
1920×1080:24 fps (added – actual 23.976 fps)
640×480:30 fps (changed – actual 29.97fps)
PAL:
1920×1080:25 fps (added – actual 25.0 fps)
1920×1080:24 fps (added – actual 23.976 fps)
640×480:25 fps (added – actual 25.0 fps)
2. Adds a function for manually adjusting the sound recording level (64 levels).
3. Adds a histogram display (brightness or RGB) for shooting movies in manual exposure.
4. Adds shutter-priority AE mode (Tv) and aperture-priority AE (Av) mode to the exposure modes for shooting movies.
5. Changes the audio sampling frequency from 44.1 KHz to 48 KHz.
6. Fixes a phenomenon where communication between the camera and the attached lens is sometimes interrupted after manual sensor cleaning. (This phenomenon only affects units with Firmware Version 1.2.4.)

Specs

Canon 5D Mark II Press Release

Amstelveen, The Netherlands, 17 September 2008: Canon announces the full frame, 21.1 Megapixel EOS 5D Mark II: the first EOS with full High Definition video capability.

Compact, lightweight and with environmental protection, EOS 5D successor boasts a newly designed Canon CMOS sensor, with ISO sensitivity up to 25,600 for shooting in near dark conditions. The new DIGIC 4 processor combines with the improved CMOS sensor to deliver medium format territory image quality at 3.9 frames per second, for up to 310 frames.

Triggered from Live View Mode, HD video capture allows users to shoot uninterrupted at full 1080 resolution at 30fps – for amazing quality footage with outstanding levels of detail and realism.

The integration of HD movie capability into a high-end 21.1 Megapixel camera opens a multitude of new possibilities for photojournalists and news photographers. With its full frame CMOS sensor and outstanding ISO performance, the EOS 5D Mark II will appeal to any photographer in search of the finest camera equipment available – from studio and wedding to nature and travel photographers.

Other improvements to the EOS 5D include:

* Addition of Canon’s EOS Integrated Cleaning System, with a new Fluorine coating on the low-pass filter
* Larger 3.0” Clear View LCD with VGA resolution, a 170° angle of view and anti-reflective coatings
* Improved menu system including Quick Control Screen for more direct access to common settings
* Automatic peripheral illumination correction, utilising detailed EF lens information to optimise JPEG images straight out of the camera
* Magnesium alloy construction with additional environmental protection
* UDMA memory card compatibility.

“Professional photojournalists and wedding photographers already choose the EOS 5D for its discrete size and outstanding image quality,” said Mogens Jensen, head of Canon Consumer Imaging. “The addition of HD movie recording opens a new chapter for EOS. It creates new possibilities for EOS photographers to capture and share their stories and to stay relevant in a rapidly changing digital landscape.”

Key Specifications
* New 21.1 Megapixel CMOS sensor with improved EOS Integrated Cleaning System (E.I.C.S.)
* New Full HD 1080 resolution movie recording
* 3.9 frames per second continuous shooting
* High performance DIGIC 4 providing superb image quality
* Maximum 310 large JPEG images in a single burst with a UDMA card
* 3.0” VGA (920k dots) Clear View LCD
* ISO 100-6400 (expansion from 50 up to 25,600)
* 9 AF points + 6 Assist AF points

New CMOS sensor

The EOS 5D Mark II’s newly designed full frame 21.1 Megapixel CMOS sensor features ISO sensitivity from 100-6400, expandable to 50, 12,800 and 25,600. Large 6.4μm2 pixels have been redesigned to capture more light and yield a better signal to noise ratio to ensure lower noise images throughout the ISO range. The full frame sensor has the same dimensions as a frame of 35mm film. This means that wide-angle lenses stay wide, without the change in angle of view associated with smaller sensor cameras. As well as benefiting from finer control over depth of field, photographers moving up to the EOS 5D Mark II’s full frame format will find the newly designed wide, bright 98% coverage viewfinder on a joy to work with.

New DIGIC 4 processor
A new DIGIC 4 processor combined with 14-bit analogue to digital conversion provides smooth gradations in mono-tonal areas such as skies, and highly accurate colour rendition. As well as HD movie shooting, DIGIC 4’s high speed provides for long uninterrupted continuous bursts of large JPEGs, near-instant start-up times and immediate and fast review after shooting. DIGIC 4 also provides for improved noise reduction algorithms, complementing the already low noise images from the EOS 5D Mark II’s CMOS sensor.

HD video capture
The EOS 5D Mark II is Canon’s first D-SLR to incorporate full HD 1920×1080 video capture. Once filming is started from Live View mode, photographers can fire off either single of continuous stills, with video capture continuing after the final frame is captured.

See everything
A new 3.0” VGA resolution LCD provides a wide 170º angle-of-view, providing plenty of clarity for accurate focus checks in playback. The screen brightness can automatically adjust to suit viewing conditions, extending battery life in low light and improving viewing in bright conditions. A new dedicated Live View button switches modes to display a real-time image on the LCD. This allows EOS 5D Mark II photographers to enjoy simplified shooting from awkward angles. Simple connection to a PC provides easy remote shooting.

Precision focus and metering
A 9-point auto focus system is supported by 6 additional invisible Assist AF points, located inside the spot-metering circle to optimise subject tracking performance in AI SERVO AF mode. For accurate exposure readings in tricky lighting conditions, the spot metering circle covers just 3.5% of the frame.

Control
The EOS 5D Mark II’s redesigned menu system includes a new Quick Control screen, for instant access to the most commonly changed settings. A new Creative Auto mode allows photographers to cede control of key settings to the camera, while retaining control over creative variables such background blur, drive mode and image brightness. Custom user settings allow photographers to switch between two completely different camera setups. This is ideal for changing quickly between two different environments, such as switching from working inside a church without flash to outdoors with fill-flash at a wedding.

Accessories
Shooting flexibility is enhanced with a range of new accessories. Shooting capacity can be extended with either the high capacity 1800mAh lithium-ion Battery Pack LP-E6, or Battery Grip BG-E6. A new optional Wireless File Transmitter – the WFT-E4 – offers external HDD and GPS compatibility along with ability to transmit images direct to computer or FTP server, or operate the camera wirelessly. Both the BG-E6 and WFT-E4 feature a vertical orientation shutter release and other key controls for comfortable portraiture work, with a substantial grip to help balance the camera when used with long lenses.

Also Consider

Sony A900

sony-a900
Overall Rating: ★★★★½

Nikon D700

nikon-d700
Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Nikon D3x

nikon-d3x
Overall Rating: ★★★★½


See also: Canon | Digital Camera | Digital SLR Cameras





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