Now that the Canon 5D Mark III is almost out (see Canon 5D Mark III Specifications), I am sure many photographers will be interested in seeing feature differences between the now obsolete Canon 5D Mark II and the new 5D Mark III. In this Canon 5D Mark III vs Canon 5D Mark II comparison, I will write about the specifications of both cameras and talk about their differences. Please keep in mind that the information below is purely based on specifications. A detailed comparison with image samples and ISO comparisons will be provided once I get a hold of the Canon 5D Mark III.
Canon 5D Mark III vs Canon 5D Mark II Specification Comparison
|Camera Feature||Canon 5D Mark III||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Sensor Resolution||22.3 Million||21.1 Million|
|Dust Reduction / Sensor Cleaning||Yes||Yes|
|Image Size||5760 x 3840||5616 x 3744|
|Image Processor||DIGIC 5+||DIGIC 4|
|Storage Media||1x Compact Flash and 1x SD||1x Compact Flash|
|Continuous Shooting Speed||6 FPS||3.9 FPS|
|Max Shutter Speed||1/8000 to 30 sec||1/8000 to 30 sec|
|Shutter Durability||150,000 cycles||150,000 cycles|
|Exposure Metering Sensor||iFCL metering with 63 zone dual-layer sensor||TTL full aperture metering 35 zone SPC|
|Base ISO||ISO 100||ISO 100|
|Native ISO Sensitivity||ISO 100-25,600||ISO 100-6,400|
|Boosted ISO Sensitivity||ISO 50, ISO 51,200-102,400||ISO 50, ISO 12,800-25,600|
|Autofocus System||61-point high-density reticular AF (up to 41 cross-type points)||9-point TTL (1 cross-type point)|
|AF Assist||No, only with external flash||No, only with external flash|
|Video Output||AVI, H.264/MPEG-4 in MOV Format||H.264/MPEG-4 in MOV Format|
|Video Maximum Resolution||1920×1080 (1080p) @ 30p||1920×1080 (1080p) @ 30p|
|Audio Recording||Built-in microphone|
External stereo microphone (optional)
External stereo microphone (optional)
|LCD Size||3.2″ diagonal TFT-LCD||3.0″ diagonal TFT-LCD|
|LCD Resolution||1,040,000 dots||920,000 dots|
|Wi-Fi Functionality||Eye-Fi Compatible, Optional external Wi-Fi||Eye-Fi Compatible, Optional external Wi-Fi|
|Battery||LP-E6 Lithium-ion Battery||LP-E6 Lithium-ion Battery|
|Battery Charger||LC-E6 Charger||LC-E6 Charger|
|Weather Sealed Body||Yes, Enhanced||Yes|
|Camera Construction||Magnesium Alloy||Magnesium Alloy|
|Dimensions||152 x 116.4 x 76.4mm||152 x 113.5 x 75.0mm|
|MSRP Price||$3,499||$2,699 (dropped to $2,199)|
Obsolete = No Longer of Any Use or No Practical Usefulness or Application, any ability for modern competitiveness long since gone (Like an old Casio with no memory card) )
Outdated = a sense of being capable but older, be aware if you attempt to use…useable with conditions (like using a 5D Classic? outdated sure, but useable)
Both are alerts or warnings and imply two separate conditions, impractical and practical with care
Please also note, you can easily say users of the 5D, 5D Mark II, and Mark III in 2019 are poor, too…. so sometimes obsolete and outdated is a pure treasure as well….. one man’s careless disregard of an enchanted item, is another man’s Genie bottle…I always say to the windows downtown ?
I cannot see why to change a 5D Mark II with a 5D Mark III !
I don’t thing that MKIII is 85% beter then MKIII but the price is 85% higher
….maketing, markieting, markieting………. and you sell pice of shit as chocolate….
Jago, see the Canon 5D Mark III Review that I published recently – image quality is only marginally better. The 5D Mark III is mostly about AF and other improvements.
Is there anyone who thinks that the availability of the Eg-S focussing on the Mark II is a very strong reason for picking up a Mark II instead of the Mark III?
I just picked up a used 5DM2. I think the strongest reason for picking up a Mark II over Mark III is that a used Mark II is $1500-1600, while used Mark III is $3200.
A nice comparison, thank you. One small error though, the Mark 2 body IS weather sealed.
Josh, it is weather sealed, but the sealing is not as good as on the 5D Mark III. I corrected the article though, thanks for pointing it out!
You seem to make enough mistakes for readers to point it out to you.
And what’s wrong with making mistakes? I admit when I make mistakes and I fix them right away. And if you do not like something, why come here and leave negative comments? If you have something to criticize, offer constructive criticism like others do.
You are pretty bullheaded for a guy who makes so many mistakes and calls 5D-M II obsolete.
You have some very good articles on your site, but some of your comments and standing behind your faults to a fault doesn’t do you good. I saw another post on PP by your wife that looked over cooked and over saturated that even beginners would point out and you argued it was different tastes..
Like you say above, mistakes are not bad. Accept and move on. You will have more readers.
Peace, thank you for your feedback, I really appreciate it. I made several mistakes in the article after copy-pasting the info. I fixed them as soon as our readers pointed them out and apologized. Not sure why people are getting so angry about the word “obsolete”. Perhaps in English, the word is much more negative than in Russian (my native language). Should I have used the word “outdated” instead? What do you call a model that is replaced by a newer one then? I don’t think I would have gotten any better reaction if I called it “outdated” either…
Both my wife and I are learning. By no means we consider ourselves experts. We just love sharing, which is why we created this blog in the first place. Thank you once again for your feedback and I will pass on your criticism to her today.
After waiting forever for the 5D Mark III to come out, I ended up buying a 5D Mark II instead since I couldn’t justify spending that much more. If the 5D Mark III was $2,800 – $3,000, I probably would have bought one day one. I ended up getting the 5D Mark II new for $1,800, nearly half the price of the 5D Mark III. With the price difference between the models, I bought a nice L series lens to go along with it.
“I ended up getting the 5D Mark II new for $1,800, nearly half the price of the 5D Mark III”
I’m thinking of picking up a 5DMII. You got a great price for yours new! Did you get it online or at a local retailer? Thanks much.
Beach Camera puts them up on eBay every few weeks for that price, check out:
You can make a “watch” on slickdeals so that it notifies you when a deal occurs. I put one in for the 5D Mark II… they sell out in about 90 minutes, so you really have to be on top of things. Beach Camera is an authorized dealer and puts a real receipt in the box with the camera, so you get your full one year warranty. Hope that helps!
Thought about this for a couple of weeks after waiting for the Mark III and ended up buying a second Mark II instead. I still absolutely love that camera and cannot justify paying double for the upgrade…
I believe there may be a new DSLR coming soon from Canon for cinematographers. We shall see.
i’m thinking of getting a 5d mark iii or the d800.
i’m leaning more to the canon but do you really think it’s worth the extra €500,-
thanks in advance
Hi Nasim, the weight of Mark III is 950 grs with battery…
I have compared many high ISO RAW images so far and do not find MK3 better than MK2.
So keeping my MK2 for now.
Seems to me like Nikon and Canon hit the wall with high ISO unless they make less pixel camera.
The workaround is Nikon D800. They just simply increased the pixel amount so at the same framing one does not have zoom as much or crop as much thus perceivable noise is lower. Per pixel noise is just the same though as before. So I figure out that at 36mp and 6400 ISO it should be practically the same as 5D2 at 3200 ISO as long as I don’t crop much.
The problem is that I would have to sell all my Canon lenses to get something slightly better.