If some is good and more is better, then too much should be just right. Canon is definitely pushing the more is better when it comes to resolution by adding to the 5D lineup with a pair of new 50 megapixel models. The Canon EOS 5DS and 5DS R DSLRs are high-megapixel, powerhouse cameras. The new, Canon-developed, 50.6 megapixel full frame CMOS sensors are the highest resolution sensors in a 35mm-style DSLR to date. Since the 5D Mark II came out, Canon has charged into motion capture advancements and some photographers have been critical of that push. At the same time, the company has been a victim of their own success with every pro-level camera after the 5D Mark II being criticized for not having even better motion-capture capabilities. These new 5D models have movie modes, but if you were expecting to see 4K in a 5D, it hasn't happened yet. The 5DS and 5DS R can shoot 1080p full HD up to 30p or 720p up to 60p, but as of now, there's no 4K capability nor is there an uncompressed HMDI/external recorder option. The EOS 7D Mark II (introduced in late 2014) and these new 5D cameras show that it isn't all about video at Canon and they're dedicated to developing new still-photography-centric technology and features.
The story on the new additions to the 5D line is the massive 50.6 megapixel resolution. Both of the new models have the same CMOS sensor. The 5DS R has the effect of the low-pass filter cancelled. There's been a fair amount of confusion regarding low-pass filters and whether they are in fact removed or negated. In the new 5DS R the physical filter is still there--Canon says removing it would necessitate a considerable redesign--but the filter's blurring effect (which helps reduce moire when photographing some subjects) is removed through image processing. No-low-pass-filter cameras have been particularly popular for landscape specialists because landscapes seldom have the kind of regular patterns that induce moire in a digital image.
The 5DS and 5DS R are extensions of the 5D lineup--the EOS 5D Mark III will continue in the line. And Canon says that the physical bodies of all three 5D models are identical. Current EOS 5D Mark III shooters will be able to use all of their their current batteries and accessories with the new cameras. This will also be welcome news for subset of nature photographers who, like me, are underwater photographers who might want to take advantage of the 50-megapixel resolution without having to buy a new housing. As soon as we have a test model in hand we'll confirm that everything is in fact completely identical. Also, in a nod to the way many of us carry cameras with a strap that attaches to the tripod socket (like this Cross Strap from Blackrapid), Canon has reinforced that area of the chassis.
To handle the 50.6 megapixel CMOS sensor, the internal processing is handled with Dual DIGIC 6 processors. Everything in life is a tradeoff and when it comes to digital cameras and resolution, the main tradeoff is more photosites and higher pixel density increases noise. 50.6 megapixel resolution isn't free and on the ISO side, the EOS 5DS/5DS R aren't built to be extraordinary low-light, high ISO cameras. On both models, the standard range is 100 - 6400. Expansion ISO goes down to 50 and up to 12,800. The AF is Canon's 61-Point High Density Reticular AF with 41 cross-type sensors. Built in intervalometers will be welcome additions for timelapse shooters and Canon has added a Creative Time Lapse Movie function which automatically builds the timelapse if you desire.
The new EOS 5DS & EOS 5DS R will be available in June. Estimated prices are: $3,699 for the EOS 5DS and $3,899 for the EOS 5DS R.
We'll have a full review once we get the cameras into OP headquarters. In the meantime, see below for the Canon USA press release.
MELVILLE, N.Y., February 5, 2015 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is proud to introduce the Canon EOS 5DSi and Canon EOS 5DS Ri Digital SLR cameras featuring the world’s highest resolution* among 35mm format DSLRs. Providing photographers with uncompromising image quality, these new EOS models incorporate a newly designed Canon 50.6 megapixel full-frame CMOS image sensor and Dual DIGIC 6 Image Processors for superb image quality and processing speed. Perfect for commercial, studio, portrait, landscape and architectural photography, or anyone looking for an affordable alternative to medium format, the ultra-high resolution of these new models allow for large-format printing and extensive cropping capability while maintaining fantastic image quality.
Maximizing the potential of the new 50.6 megapixel sensor – for the first time in an EOS camera the low-pass filter effect in the EOS 5DS R model is cancelled. The cancellation of the low-pass filter helps deliver sharp images, squeezing the most out of every pixel. Both models provide attractive options for medium format shooters especially when coupled with a wide array of over 70 creative Canon EF lenses to choose from.
“Canon is always looking to deliver the absolute best in image quality and push our technology to the limits. These cameras deliver on that pledge, providing photographers with two new incredible tools that will enable them to make the most out of every shoot,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “As photography becomes more specialized and more images are captured than ever before, the burden is on the photography equipment to keep up with the demands of today’s artistic talents. These new camera models will provide many photographers with new options to deliver their vision to clients, fans, and the world.”
Built to Maximize Sharpness
In addition to the 50.6 megapixel full-frame image sensor and Dual DIGIC 6 Image Processors, both cameras include a 61-Point High Density Reticular AF array including up to 41 cross-type AF points and EOS iTR AF for high precision autofocus. They also include the EOS Scene Detection system featuring a 150,000-pixel RGB+IR 252-zone metering sensor that provides enhanced precision and performance.
In support of such a high-resolution imaging sensor, the EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R cameras were designed to minimize camera shake and significantly improve stability via a reinforced chassis, baseplate and tripod lug to improve rigidity. Canon also re-designed the mirror vibration control system to help reduce mirror bounce and camera shake. To help maximize stability and minimize vibrations, Canon added a new Arbitrary Release Time Lag Setting in Mirror Lock mode in both models. In addition to the standard setting (press the shutter button once to lock the mirror, then again to release the shutter), the EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R cameras offer new setting intervals of 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, one and two seconds, releasing the shutter after the selected preset delay, allowing potential camera vibration to dissipate before shutter release.
A new Picture Style called “Fine Detail” has been added to enhance the sharpness of JPEGs and EOS Movies with three new settings: Strength, Fineness and Threshold. With such abundant resolution on each sensor, both models also provide two cropped shooting modes, while still delivering high-resolution images 30.5 megapixels for the 1.3x mode and 19.6 megapixels for the 1.6x mode. The available crop options are visible as a mask or an outline in the viewfinder; so shooters can know exactly where to frame their subject.
Capturing the Action
Like the EOS 7D Mark II, the EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R cameras feature an advanced AE system that can detect and compensate for flickering light sources such as sodium vapor lamps that are often used in gymnasiums and natatoriums. When enabled, this anti-flicker system automatically adjusts shutter release timing to help reduce disparities in exposure and color especially during continuous shooting. And new Auto White Balance settings include Ambience Priority and White Priority (for use when shooting under tungsten lighting).
Photographers and cinematographers will appreciate improved custom controls including a built-in intervalometer and bulb timer to enable the capture of time-lapse images and long-exposure images. These features are ideal for recording fireworks, star trails, sunrises and more.
Both models feature Intelligent Viewfinder II providing approximately 100 percent field of view, while adding the ability to display cropped shooting frames and superimpose a customizable selection of camera settings and data such as dual-mode electronic level display and grid, as well as exposure, white balance, metering, drive, image quality and AF modes. A new Customizable Quick Control Screen, another first for EOS cameras, allows photographers to quickly change frequently used camera settings and functions.
The EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R cameras continue the EOS Movie tradition with the ability to shoot in 1080p Full HD up to 30p or 720p HD video up to 60p. A creative Time Lapse Movie function, a first for EOS cameras, takes a continuous series of still photographs and automatically combines them in camera into a Full HD movie file. Interval adjustments can be set from one second to 99 hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds. The number of shots possible range from 2 to 3,600 with a maximum of two minutes and 30 seconds of playback time. In addition, high-speed continuous shooting up to five-frames-per-second (fps) at full 50 megapixel resolution allows users to capture fast action.
The EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R cameras feature dual card slots for CF and SD memory cards, including Ultra High Speed (UHS-1) SD cards. Built to last, the cameras also feature a shutter durability rating up to 150,000 cycles, the same as the EOS 5D Mark III.
The EOS 5DS and EOS 5DS R Digital SLR cameras are scheduled to be available through authorized Canon dealers in June 2015 for estimated retail prices of $3,699.00 and $3,899.00 for the body only, respectively.