Canon EOS 5D Review Round-Up


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Get information and user reviews for this camera at Amazon: Canon EOS 5D 12.8 MP Digital SLR Camera (Body Only)

Imaging Resource

Built around a 12.8-megapixel (effective) CMOS sensor, covering the same area as a 35mm film frame, the Canon EOS 5D provides “full frame” digital SLR technology at a much more affordable price point than ever before. The Canon 5D will deliver incredible image quality when paired with excellent lenses, but will quickly expose every flaw in lower-grade glass. As you’d expect of a high-end digital SLR from Canon, the EOS 5D boasts a full range of photographic controls and custom functions. READ FULL REVIEW

Other Canon EOS 5D Reviews

Camera Labs

The Canon EOS 5D was the first ‘affordable’ DSLR with a full-frame sensor, allowing lenses to perform exactly as they would on a 35mm film body – so fit a 24mm lens and you really get 24mm coverage. The larger surface area of a full-frame sensor also allows the 5D to deliver low noise results at high sensitivities. The 5D is however three years old now, and looks dated on modern features: it only has 3fps, a 2.5in QVGA screen, no Live View, no AF micro-adjust or in-camera corrections and a maximum sensitivity of a ‘mere’ 3200 ISO. The resolution is also now ‘only’ 12.8 Megapixels. Models like the new 5D Mark II are much better-featured, but the original 5D can still capture wonderful images and is here for potential bargains as the new models slug it out. READ FULL REVIEW

Digital Photography Review

The EOS 5D is a fantastic photographic tool which is capable of producing really excellent results. The caveat is that it takes a little more care and understanding of your equipment (especially lenses). We found resolution to be absolutely excellent with crisp detailed results straight from the camera (JPEG) and even more detail available if you shoot RAW. …   Anyone looking for the ‘purity’ of full frame (and a Canon mount) the EOS 5D would be absolutely Highly Recommended. For everyone else however it’s a hard decision. If the EOS 5D had been introduced a couple of years ago before the availability of designed-for-digital ultra-wide angle zoom lenses it could easily have walked away with a clear lead against ‘cropped sensor’ models. However there are many photographers quite happy with the results they get from their current cameras, only history will tell if the EOS 5D is the start of a full frame revolution or simply the first of a new niche format. READ FULL REVIEW

Steve’s Digicam

The bottom line is always image quality, and the 5D does not disappoint with its combination of 12.8-megapixel resolution, full-frame image sensor and low image noise. The 5D is capable of producing images rivaling the quality of the professional 1DS Mark II. Most pro’s will opt to shoot in RAW mode … While image noise is noticeable in midtone and shadow areas at sensitivities over ISO 800, ISO 1600 and 3200 produce very usable images. The 5D is the first moderately-priced dSLR with a full-frame image sensor, eliminating the crop factor or focal length multiplier that has made wide angle shooting difficult with dSLR’s. …To some users the 5D’s combination of additional resolution, high-ISO image quality and wide angle-friendly full frame image sensor will be very attractive. Canon has produced an outstanding addition to its dSLR product line in the 5D, but its total cost of ownership may place it beyond the means of the average enthusiast. READ FULL REVIEW


The Canon’s EOS 5D combines a 12.8-megapixel, 23.9mm-by-35.8mm CMOS sensor with a competent midsize SLR body for less than half the price of the only full-frame alternative available at this writing. The Canon EOS 5D’s design and performance are only fair, and its feature set is unexceptional for the price. But its high-resolution images offer superb detail, rich tonality, and incredibly low noise. If image quality is your paramount concern, or you’re one of those full-frame nuts–er, aficionados–then buy this camera, and you’ve just saved 4,000 bucks. …A decent midrange digital SLR camera built around a superb sensor, the Canon EOS 5D delivers great images and the familiar 35mm-film-format shooting experience for a comparatively low (though still hefty) price. READ FULL REVIEW

The 13-megapixel Canon EOS 5D single-lens reflex digital camera is the first consumer-priced full-frame sensor body. It does just about everything that an EOS 1Ds body did at about half the weight (2 lbs.). The primary advantages of having a digital sensor the same size (24x36mm) as a frame of 35mm film are (1) higher image quality, especially in terms of noise and especially in lower light situations, and (2) the ability to use very wide angle lenses. The only disadvantage to having a full-frame sensor compared to a small-sensor digital SLR body … is that the small-sensor effectively increases the magnification of telephoto lenses, which can be useful when you are doing sports or bird photography. … The Canon EOS 5D is the essential camera for everything that photographers used to do with 35mm film. It is more than good enough for most professional photojournalism applications, but still simple enough that a yuppie can get one to throw in the glovebox of his BMW SUV and take pictures at the school soccer game. READ FULL REVIEW

Luminous Landscape

The Canon 5D is an immensely satisfying camera. In a physical size, weight and form factor it is little different than the mainstream of 5 – 8 Megapixel APS sized cameras. But Canon has, with the 5D, provided photographers with a full-frame 35mm of sufficient resolution – 12.8 Megapixel – to meet the print and reproduction size needs of the vast majority of serious photographers. Image quality, whether at normal or at high ISO, is as good as it currently gets. Functionally, the 5D, while not blazing any new ground, provides a set of features and functions that will more than satisfy the vast majority of advanced amateurs and pros. All of this at a price that while by traditional measure is still higher than photographers would like, at least is no longer stratospheric, and dare I write – is almost affordable for many serious photographers. READ FULL REVIEW

Ken Rockwell

The Canon 5D is the world’s best portrait and landscape camera for under $8,000. The images look fantastic, and it runs forever on a single charge. Unlike pro cameras, it’s light enough to want to take in your backpack everywhere to bring back extraordinary images. How good is it? The 5D doesn’t handle as fast as a Nikon and isn’t built anywhere near as tough as a pro Nikon, but if your subject holds still and you aren’t shooting in the rain, the 5D easily can exceed the technical quality of anything from Nikon. My 5D has immaculate image quality beyond anything in smaller formats. You people know who you are. If you want the very best possible image quality in any digital camera costing less than $8,000, go get a 5D today. If you shoot from a tripod, get a 5D. If you shoot landscapes digitally while backpacking, get the 5D regardless of your budget, since the 5D is the lightest full-frame digital camera. READ FULL REVIEW

Photo Review

Canon’s 12.8-megapixel EOS 5D is in a class by itself and likely to remain unique for some time. … it has a compact magnesium alloy case, stainless steel internal chassis and a mirror box of high-strength engineering plastic. Its control layout is very similar to the EOS 20D but its body is slightly bulkier. The 5D sports the same 35-zone metering system as the 20D but its AF system is faster and more accurate. Although burst capture rates are slower (3fps against 5fps for the 20D), the 5Ds buffer memory is larger and will hold up to 17 RAW images. While some readers may be disappointed by the 5D’s comparatively slow burst rate and lack of full environmental sealing or a pop-up flash, professional photographers looking for an additional body, wedding and portrait photographers seeking newer technology and higher resolution, and affluent amateurs who want top features and functionality in a relatively portable camera should find their needs met by this exciting new camera. READ FULL REVIEW

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