Canon releases Highest Resolution DSLR with the 5Ds R

In the Pixel War, Canon Pulls out the Big Guns

The Pixel War is not over! Canon shocked many by announcing the release of it’s new redesign of the 5D series. The 5Ds and 5Ds R cameras now have the highest resolution available in a full frame DSLR. 50 megapixels puts Canons new Camera on par with professional medium format cameras, and at just under $4,000.00 it is a fraction of the price of its pro brothers. (The Hasselblad H5D-50c Medium Format DSLR Camera offers 50 megapixel photography at a hefty cost of $30,000.00).

Features of the Canon 5Ds R

Although both the 5Ds and the 5Ds R contain the same full frame 50.6 megapixel sensor, the 5Ds R also contains a Low-pass Filter effect Cancelation. A Low-pass filter is useful to reduce color artifacts and moiré typical with digital capture, it also reduces detail at the pixel level. With the 5Ds R’s LPF disabled, the camera takes better advantage of the 50.6 Megapixel sensor. More detail is captured and retained in the image.

The Canon 5Ds R also includes Canon’s 61 point high density reticular autofocus system. The system is incredibly sensitive to changes in frame composition, making adjustments quickly to help ensure consistent, sharp focus. Canon’s iTR Intelligent Tracking and Recognition system synchronizes the active AE point with the subject’s motion, helping to ensure that AF precision is maintained.

Canon has also redesigned the mirror control mechanism ro eliminate camera shake from the shutter release. The camera’s mirror is not controlled by springs but instead is driven by a small motor and cams. This system suppresses the impact typical of the camera’s mirror, significantly reducing impact and its effects on the image.

The full frame image sensor (36 mm x 24mm) has a 3:2 aspect ratio. Great for shooting still photos, this sensor accurately reproduces the depth of field found in traditional 35mm SLR cameras. However, full frame sensors are not optimal for shooting video (The depth of field will be to narrow causing focus problem in any but the most optimum lighting conditions). A 35mm motion picture camera shoots a frame size of aprox 22mm x 16mm. For a look that resembles traditional Hollywood motion pictures the APS c sensor (which is 22.4 x 15.0 mm) is a better choice.

This leads us to the biggest flaw of the Canon 5Ds and 5Ds R series. The video capture. Although the 50.6 megapixel sensors impressive 8712 x 5813 image size is more then capable of shooting 4k video (4k being 3840 x 2160), Canon chose not to include a 4k shooting mode. Instead the 5Ds and 5Ds R are limited by software to shoot 1920 x 1080 HD video. As a further disappointment to the video crowd, the 5Ds and 5Ds R are limited to 24, 25, and 30 fps in full HD and 60fps in 1280 x 720… My phone shoots better high speed then that. It appears that Canon is so worried about not making the 5Ds series cut into their C300 movie camera sales, that they made a DSLR that is just plain bad for videographers.

So if you are a still photographer that has dreamed of shooting digital medium format, but just couldn’t bring yourself to spend $30,000.00 to do it, this might be the perfect camera for you. However, if you are looking for an all around good camera that shoots amazing pictures and video… there are better options in the $4,000.00 price range.

This is a guest post by Photographer David DeFino.

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