The Nikon Z5 and Canon EOS R are close competitors. Both are entry-level offerings with similar features, weight, and price. Which one of these should you get? Read on to find out!
Nikon Z5 vs Canon EOS R Specifications Comparison
|Camera Feature||Nikon Z5||Canon EOS R|
|Announced||July 2020||September 2018|
|Image Processor||EXPEED 6||DIGIC 8|
|Resolution||24.3 MP||30.3 MP|
|Sensor Dimensions||35.9 x 23.9 mm (Full Frame)||36.0 x 24.0 mm (Full Frame)|
|Sensor Pixel Size||5.95µ||5.36µ|
|Low Pass Filter||Yes||Yes|
|IBIS (In-Body Image Stabilization)||Yes||No|
|Base ISO||ISO 100||ISO 100|
|Max Native ISO||ISO 51,200||ISO 40,000|
|Extended ISOs||ISO 50-102,400||ISO 50-102,400|
|High-Resolution Sensor Shift||No||No|
|Focus Stack Bracketing||Yes||No|
|Pre-Shoot Burst Mode||No||No|
|Fastest Shutter Speed||1/8000||1/8000|
|Longest Shutter Speed||30 seconds||30 seconds|
|Continuous Shooting (Mechanical Shutter)||4.5 FPS||8 FPS|
|Continuous Shooting (Electronic Shutter)||4.5 FPS||8 FPS|
|Notes for High FPS Shooting||None||No autofocus at 8 FPS (autofocus at 5 FPS)|
|Buffer Size (Raw)||100 frames (4.5 FPS)||47 frames (8 FPS)|
|Autofocus System||Hybrid PDAF||Hybrid PDAF|
|Maximum Low-Light AF Sensitivity (Standardized to f/2, ISO 100)||-3.5 EV||-4.5 EV|
|Standard Flash Sync Speed||1/200||1/200|
|Curtain to Protect Sensor at Shutdown||No||Yes|
|Maximum Video Bit Depth (Internal)||8 bits||8 bits|
|Maximum Video Bit Depth (External)||8 bits||10 bits|
|4K Maximum Framerate||30 FPS||30 FPS|
|1080P Maximum Framerate||60 FPS||60 FPS|
|Additional Video Crop Factor||1.7x crop at 4K||1.74x crop at 4K|
|Chroma Subsampling||4:2:0||4:2:0, 4:2:2 (External)|
|Video Recording Limit||30 min||30 min|
Physical and Other Features
|Slot 1 Type||SD (UHS-II)||SD (UHS-II)|
|Slot 2 Type||SD (UHS-II)||N/A|
|Rear LCD Size (Diagonal)||3.2 in||3.2 in|
|Rear LCD Resolution||1.04 million dots||2.1 million dots|
|Articulating LCD||Single Axis||Yes|
|Viewfinder Resolution||3.69 million dots||3.69 million dots|
|USB Type||Type C 3.1||Type C 3.1|
|Battery Life (Viewfinder)||390 frames||350 frames|
|Battery Life (Rear LCD)||470 frames||370 frames|
|Battery Life (Eco Mode)||N/A||560 frames|
|Weight (Body Only w/ Battery + Card)||675 g (1.49 lbs.)||660 g (1.46 lbs.)|
|Dimensions (LxHxD)||134 x 101 x 80 mm (5.3 x 4.0 x 3.1″)1||136 x 98 x 84 mm (5.3 x 3.9 x 3.3″)|
|MSRP, Body Only||$1400 (Check Current Price)||$1800 (Check Current Price)|
|Used Prices||Nikon Z5 Used Prices||Canon EOS R Used Prices|
|1The Nikon Z5’s official dimensions do not include the depth of the protruding viewfinder. To match the typical standards today, 15mm were added to the Z5’s depth measurement in this table.|
Summary and Recommendations
It’s a bit difficult to choose between these two cameras. On first glance, the EOS R seems like it’s a bit better with it’s slightly higher resolution and continuous burst speed. Undoubtedly, the EOS R has noticeably better autofocus performance as well, so if you want an entry-level camera with solid autofocus, I’d definitely recommend the EOS R.
On the other hand, the Z5 has one saving grace: IBIS. I’ve noticed that Canon’s lower-end strategy is often to omit IBIS whereas Nikon’s strategy sacrifices speed instead. So, it becomes a choice of whether IBIS or autofocus is more important to you.
Looking at the Canon, I can see many cases where I would miss IBIS. I enjoy shooting landscapes and portraits in lower light and IBIS certainly helps me a lot in those domains. On the other hand, most of Canon’s long lenses, including even the cheaper Canon RF 800mm f/11 and RF 600mm f/11 lenses, have optical stabilization built in.
Thus, if you’re looking for a beginner’s birding or action camera, the EOS R is the clear winner with its higher resolution, better autofocus, and faster burst speed. (Though arguably the R7 would be even better in this case.) On the other hand, the Nikon Z5 would be more versatile for slower shooting scenarios where IBIS can really come in handy, especially since the smaller primes from either company usually lack optical lens stabilization. The slightly cheaper price of the Z5 doesn’t hurt either.
Finally, before deciding on either camera, look at each company’s lens lineup as well. Both have unique lenses not available in the other camp!
What does the Nikon Z5 offer over the Canon EOS R?
- In-body image stabilization, allowing for easier handheld photography even with non-stabilized lenses
- Two card slots, which is better for redundancy and backup
- Lower price, costing $400 less
What does the Canon EOS R offer over the Nikon Z5?
- Better autofocus
- 1.25 times more megapixels (24.3MP vs 30.3MP)
- Higher resolution rear display, with about 2.0x more dots, making image review in the field easier
Questions? Go to our forum, where you can start a conversation and talk to photographers about these two cameras!