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New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎07-05-2016

Camera Upgrade Advice

Hi all! I am looking to upgrade my camera and would love some advice. I have a Canon Rebel T3i that I have been using for several years now, and think it is finally time for an upgrade! I mainly shoot nature (wildlife+landscapes) as a hobby photographer. I am not quite sure which camera is best for this type of shooting. Does full frame matter? I am looking to spend <2.5k, and will probably purchase a refurbished camera, as this is how I got my Rebel and it's worked perfectly since I got it.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,495
Registered: ‎02-17-2016

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

What doesn't the Rebel do, that you need?

New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎07-05-2016

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

Mainly better low-light shooting, faster focusing, sharper images, and faster shooting for moving animals.

VIP
Posts: 8,619
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

[ Edited ]

@ifoundnemo wrote:

Mainly better low-light shooting, faster focusing, sharper images, and faster shooting for moving animals.


If you want all of the above, then you need a 1D series camera. 

 

If you want better low light performance, then a full frame will be better, 6D or 5D Mark III camera.

 

If you want faster shooting [fps] for moving animals, then I'd look at a 7D Mark II.  The 80D might approach the 7DII in this regard, but the 7DII may focus faster and get sharper pictures as a result.

 

If you simply want sharper images, in general, then buying a better lens just may be the ticket.

 

IMG_2015_09_190383.WEB.jpg

 

Taken with a T5, EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM, 1/500 sec, f/8, ISO-100, 10mm

 

IMG_2016_06_170489.jpg

 

Taken with a T5 and an EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro Lens.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,967
Registered: ‎02-26-2015

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice


@ifoundnemo wrote:

Hi all! I am looking to upgrade my camera and would love some advice. I have a Canon Rebel T3i that I have been using for several years now, and think it is finally time for an upgrade! I mainly shoot nature (wildlife+landscapes) as a hobby photographer. I am not quite sure which camera is best for this type of shooting. Does full frame matter? I am looking to spend <2.5k, and will probably purchase a refurbished camera, as this is how I got my Rebel and it's worked perfectly since I got it.


The Canon 7D Mk II would be a huge upgrade over your Rebel T3i, and is by far the best wildlife camera available. 

 

With full frame there are trade offs. You need more expensive lenses with a full frame camera to get the same reach as with an APS-C camera. Also, you don't get the frames per second with most full frame cameras that you do with the 7D Mk II. To match the AF performance and FPS of the 7D Mk II you really have to get into a 1D X which is a big price bump.

 

While a full frame camera does have some advantage when it comes to low light landscapes, in my opinion it is nothing that a good solid tripod doesn't make up for.

 

I got caught up in the Internet hype about a full frame camera and bought one. It is my least used camera. My 7D Mk II is my go to camera, and I don't feel limited by it at all.

 

When you buy the 7D Mk II get the kit with the EF-S 18-135 IS STM and EF-S 55-250 IS STM lenses. Those lenses are an amazing value, and Canon really upped the image quality when the redesigned them for the STM focus motor. EF-S 55-250 IS STM has image quality that rivials the much praised EF 70-200 f/4L IS. 

VIP
Posts: 11,658
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

"I have a Canon Rebel T3i that I have been using for several years now, and think it is finally time for an upgrade!"

 

Of course it doesn't matter why you want to upgrade or whatever.  If you want another or better camera, go for it.

The obvious choice for you is the 7D Mk II.  It will use all your current lenses or any lens you may buy in the future.

 

The best choice is the 5D Mk III.  If you have ef-s lenses they will not work.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,861
Registered: ‎12-02-2012

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

What lenses do you have?  This is relevant for a couple of reasons.

 

First, it matters if you go full frame since any EF-s lenses you have will not work on full frame.  

Secondly, lenses can help you in low light as much or more than a body upgrade can, especially if you don't already have fast big aperture lenses. 

Thirdly, lenses can definitely help with sharpness as much or more than a body upgrade can if you don't already have upgraded lenses. 

Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,119
Registered: ‎02-06-2013

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

Camera upgrade advice is tough...there is simply no right answer...especially when what you wanted to do - landscapes and wild life are two diametrically opposing requirements.

 

Any one camera will do OK for both roles but not if you want the very best for each role...you'd need to have more than one cameras.

 

For landscapes, a full frame camera is better because for a given lens focal length, you have wider field of view and also less distortion (wider angle lenses distort things more).  On the opposite, for wild life, a cropped sensor camera is better - 1.6 times more reach for the same lens focal length...good telephoto lenses are very expensive.

 

In addition, full frame cameras (with exception of the 1DXx) have slow frame rate and usually don't do as well as action cameras.  In return they have better ISO performance (both noise and range).  The 7D Mark II is the Canon king of action camera that also has the 1.6 reach advantage.  Recently the 80D came out with fairly decent performance.

 

I started out with a Canon 50D and was happy with it for a while then when the 5D Mark III came out, I got that.  It is a great camera compared to the 50D...so much so that I stopped using the 50D altogether (no fun shooting it).  The only problem was that when I shoot wild life (mostly birds in flight)...the lack of reach was getting really bad...birds tend to fly away from you, rarely towards you so reach is very important.  Then when the 7D Mark II came out, I got that and have been so happy with it for wild life.  For everything else, I would reach for the 5D Mark III.  So that's how I became a 2-camera guy.  I will always use two cameras (one full frame and one cropped). 

 

 

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Diverhank's photos on Flickr
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,967
Registered: ‎02-26-2015

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

For landscapes, Canon now has the EF-S 10-18 IS STM lens. Like all of Canon's STM lenses, it offers APS-C shooters amazing image quality at a fantastic price. Better than even the much liked EF-S 10-22.

 

The EF-S 10-18 IS STM lens on a crop sensor camera, offers image quality on par with an EF 16-35 f/4L IS USM on a full frame camera and it totally blows away the EF 17-40 f/4L. 

 

The image quality of Canon's STM lens seems like Canon's best kept secret. STM lenses get press because of their quite focus for video, but, the real story is their image quality.

 

There are lenses like the Rokinon/Samyang/etc 14mm f/2.8 that offer similar image quality from a full frame camera, in the same price range as the STM lenses. But, that isn't a reason to go full frame, and lose out on the reach and frames per second advantage you get with the 7D Mk II.

VIP
Posts: 8,619
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Camera Upgrade Advice

[ Edited ]

Well, a consensus seems to be taking shape. 

 

1.  Except for Canon's flagship 1D series, most all of the other models compromise on performance in some way.

2.  Almost any camera can do a pretty good job at taking the types of shots you want, but some do some tasks better than others.

3.  Good lenses can improve your shots just as much as a newer, updated camera.

4.  The EOS 7D Mark II seems to be the popular choice for APS-C cameras, perhaps followed by the 80D.

5.  The EOS 5D Mark III seems to be the popular choice for full-frame cameras, perhaps followed by the 6D.

 

Of the two, 7DII and 5DIII, the 7DII costs less, and won't break your stated budget.  There will still be something left over to buy a lens, if you so wished.  The 5DIII is right at the limit of your budget, with nothing left over for a lens.

 

I recently made this same choice for my son.  He already has an APS-C body, the T5, and 4 EF-S lenses, so I picked upgrading to another APS-C body.  Now I have to decide on 7DII [GPS], or 80D [Wi-Fi].  The 5DIII has neither, but it does have the larger, full frame image sensor.  Some do not think the difference is that great. 

 

Personally, I love the detailed images that I get from my full frame 6D, which is a great bare bones, full frame camera.  One of my sons has a 7DII, and I can see a difference in photos that we have taken at the same occasion.  However, I think the biggest differences are in shot taking ability between myself and my son...and the lenses that we use.  Mine are better.

 

In the end, check out the features that the cameras [7DII and 5DIII] have to offer.  I am seriously leaning towards the 80D because of the built-in Wi-Fi and intervalometer.  The 7DII has faster frames per second, fps, 10 vs. 7, which isn't that significant considering that he's not out there shooting birds in the wild during a thunderstorm, mostly just friends and family at social events.  He doesn't have an arsenal of weather sealed lenses, so that feature of the 7DII [and 5DIII] is moot, too.  However, I do like the image processing power of the 7DII, which blows the 80D completely away.  Which camera would be best to grow with?  I dunno.  I'd say the 7DII, but it is probably more camera than he needs, or will use, right now.

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