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R8 vs R6: Best Handling Camera?

duff4
Apprentice

Hiya everyone, I’m here seeking some advice. I have a back problem and I’m interested in an R8, coming from a 6D: new tech and light body looks interesting. Still, I’m not convinced at all by the handling (the feature I value the most in a camera body) of the R8, while the R6 II looks perfect in that regard. I have pretty big hands and find the multi control jog/joystick really useful.

Owners of both: which one would you pick? Budget it’s not an issue.

Many thanks in advance!

12 REPLIES 12

rs-eos
Elite
Elite

You mention "back problem", so am assuming you need to keep your camera as light as possible?  While there will be a slight difference between those two cameras, lenses can be either very light or very heavy.   So depending upon what you desire to capture, that can lead to a better understanding of the total weight you'd be looking at.

--
Ricky

Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers

Tronhard
Elite
Elite

Hi and welcome to the forum:

As my respected colleague Ricky said, a major factor in the weight of a camera is going to be the lens, so to echo his suggestion it would help to know what subjects you are shooting and what lenses you currently have.

The R8 has fewer controls than either the R6 or R6MkII, both the joystick and rear control wheel are missing, so if you prefer the 6D layout I would suggest heading to the R6.   I have both versions of the R6 platform and must suggest that again, for layout reasons you may prefer the earlier R6, rather that the MkII version.  This is because Canon made a change to the top of the camera: they moved the on-off switch from left to right, and combined that with a control lock switch, while on the left that position is now occupied by the Video/Stills option - which is a new option.  Having shot with many cameras having the on/off switch on the left, I found I kept switching between video and stills instead of turning off the camera.  You may or may not find that frustrating.  I have got used to it, although I am using other R-series cameras and thus have to remember to behave differently for that body.

The original R6 is a great camera.  It has a bigger battery, better sealing, In-Body Image Stabilization (which the R8 does not have) to perform better hand-held with low light, longer focal lengths, or slow shutter speeds.  The R8 has a larger, newer sensor (24MP) compared to the R6 20MP but, for my purposes, I honestly don't see the difference.   The R6 also offers dual SD card slots for redundancy while the R8 has a single slot.


cheers, TREVOR

"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

ebiggs1
Legend
Legend

" I have a back problem and I’m interested in an R8, ..."

Have you ever considered or tried a Black Rapid shoulder strap. I carry very heavy cameras and lenses and I do it for hours at a time. The Black Rapid makes it way more doable.

You have a double edged sword of an issue here. However, I would lean towards the camera that fits your photographic needs and figure out how to deal with the weight issue afterwards. If a camera won't or can't do what you want it to, it doesn't really matter that it is a light weight. Otherwise a P&S Powershot is the answer.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

justadude
Rising Star

Both are great cameras.  My R6m2 weighs 680 grams, my R8 weighs about 2/3 of that at 461 grams.... but the difference is small once you toss a heavy lens on them, such as the 70-200.  I also have large hands.  The R6m2 is very comfortable to me... more like a DSLR, which I love the size of.  The R8 is a little smaller, still comfortable to hold... and not toy size like the R10, which is just a bit too tiny to be comfortable.

You didn't mention what you shoot.  Is a tripod practical to support the weight?  Or if you need something a little more portable, how about a mono-pod?  Neck straps are horrible for your back (I also have back problems).  Side straps are a lot more comfortable.  I used to use the Rapid straps that screw into the threaded tripod mount on the bottom of the camera.  However, I've switched over to the Peak Design Slide Straps, which are more comfortable, snap to the top side of the camera body, and can quickly changed to a different body.  The camera seems to rest against the side of your body more comfortably with these straps.  

If budget is not an issue, go with the R6m2 (providing the slight extra weight is not a problem).  The focusing on this camera is insanely good.  Image stabilization is a big plus over the R8, battery lasts about twice as long, dual card slots, better viewfinder resolution, it has about 4 times as many focus points, AND there is an anti dust shutter mechanism when the lens is off on the R6m2, but not on the R8.

The only reason I have both of these cameras is that my R6m2 is my main workhorse.  The R8 is converted to infrared photography only, and I did not need the extra features for this type of work.


Gary

Digital: Canon EOS R6 Mk ll, EOS R8, EOS RP, EOS 60D, many RF, EF, and Rokinon lenses
Film: Pentax Spotmatic, Pentax K1000, Pentax K2000, Miranda DR, Zenit 12XP, Kodak Retina Automatic II, Kodak Duaflex III, and various lenses

You make a lot of good points Gary, the only thing is that the OP said "handling [is] the feature I value the most" with regards to controls.  While the R6MkII has an interface much closer to the 6DII than the R8, there is one layout change that may, or may not, be an issue for out OP - the power switch is moved from the left to the right and now shares its spot with a new control lock switch, while it's original spot is now taken with a video/stills mode switch. 

Perhaps because I continue to use other cameras with the previous layout, it took me a while to get used to that and I kept switching modes instead of turning the camera off.  That could just be me, but I will note it will not be an issue with the original R6, which otherwise is a very close performer to the 6DII and should be cheaper as a refurb.


cheers, TREVOR

"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

Very true on the relocation of the power switch being different, and it might be awkward at first to some folks.  As far as handling, the R6Mkll handles nicer than the R8 in general, the joystick being a big plus... as well as a little more room for controls.

Personally, when I first held the R6Mkll (as well as the R8) I was happy that the switch moved.  For many years I thought that Canon had it backwards with the switch being on the left... unlike many other DSLR cameras I have owned, as well as some of the point & shoot models - including Canon's.  Funny thing... one of the first cameras that I used myself with the switch on the left was the 60D & 6D models back in 2011.  Still to this day I often reach to the right side first to turn the power on or off on either of those.  Finally with the two recent purchases, it feels right again.

As for the refurbished (my R8 is a refurb) I agree that you can save great money on them.  Anyone looking should click the "Notify me when available" button.  It only took a few days for mine to be available, then two days later, they were sold again.  Both the R6 and the R6Mkll refurbs are not available as of today, but either one could be soon.  The OP did say that budget is not an issue... but who doesn't like saving money?


Gary

Digital: Canon EOS R6 Mk ll, EOS R8, EOS RP, EOS 60D, many RF, EF, and Rokinon lenses
Film: Pentax Spotmatic, Pentax K1000, Pentax K2000, Miranda DR, Zenit 12XP, Kodak Retina Automatic II, Kodak Duaflex III, and various lenses

Absolutely agree across the board on the R6II except for the power switch, which may or may not be an issue - I just wanted the OP to be informed of that difference from their existing layout.  If it's critical, then the R6 is there, if not I'd go for the R6II, if they are ok with the price - I gather it's on sale right now for you lucky US buyers!


cheers, TREVOR

"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

Waddizzle
Legend
Legend

I moved from a 6D and 6Dii to the R6ii.  I’ve found the weight difference to be negligible.  What I like the most about the R6ii is that it uses the same batteries and chargers as I currently using in my 6D bodies.  

I mention batteries because the R8 uses a much smaller battery, one that is not compatible with my current batteries and chargers.  I also preferred the similar ergonomics of the R6 series with the 6D series.

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."

shadowsports
Legend
Legend

A refurb R6 mkII has been dipping down to $1799.  It would be my choice if considering the R8 and R6.

~Rick
Bay Area - CA


~R5 C (1.0.6.1) ~RF Trinity, ~RF 100 Macro, ~RF 100~400, ~RF 100~500, +RF 1.4x TC, +Canon Control Ring, BG-R10, 430EX III-RT ~DxO PhotoLab Elite ~DaVinci Resolve ~Windows11 Pro ~ImageClass MF644Cdw/MF656Cdw ~Pixel 8
~CarePaks Are Worth It

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