Seeking help choosing between 5D MKIV and D850

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by returntovendor, Oct 4, 2017.

  1. returntovendor

    returntovendor TPF Noob!

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    Hi All,

    I'm trying to make a decision for purchasing a camera. There are obviously a lot of considerations to make for such a complex device and I know that ultimately there is no better camera than the one that I choose. But I'm hoping I can get some help better framing my decision and hopefully have some light shed on other factors I may not have considered.

    My purpose: My wife runs a fashion blog. It isn't large and she hasn't found a wide audience yet, but we regularly shoot and have been doing so for about a year. I guess I'd call myself an advanced amateur.

    I currently have a Nikon D60 which I bought a long time ago. I use a 50mm 1.8 and I get great photos with it, far better than my iPhone. However, I would like to have more resolving power and better auto focus and I want to make this upgrade so immense that I won't need to upgrade again for another 5 - 7 years.

    I've been split between the D850 and the 5D MKIV. I've had my eyes set on the 5D for the year that it has been out, but the D850 appears to be capable of producing higher image quality for stills, which is my main purpose.

    I'll mainly be shooting portrait/fashion photography and some light architecture. My current camera isn't the best for sports or landscape, but I may take interest in these with a more capable body. The same goes for videography, where I understand the Nikon has an edge in respect to the codec, but the Canon has superior auto focus. I've never shot video but may take interest with a capable camera.

    I want to pair either camera to the respective brand's 70 - 200 f/2.8 lens, as my research indicates this will be an excellent portrait lens.

    There are a few questions I have:

    1. Is the video/live view auto focus in the D850 really that unusable? If I wanted to record YouTube type blogger videos (studio or "everyday life" documentary type), am I really going to be at a significant disadvantage?

    2. Research I've seen indicates that the D850 has dynamic range and ISO performance similar or better than the D810, even with more megapixels. DXOMark indicates that the D810's performance is marginally better than the 5D Mark IV. Would this dynamic range and ISO performance translate to actual real world results?

    3. Are my handheld shots with an image stabilized lens significantly more susceptible to motion shake with the D850 vs the 5D MKIV due to the difference in resolution?

    Are there any other items I should take into consideration when comparing these two cameras? Are there unanticipated advantages which one system would have over the other?

    Thanks any help or recommendations.


     
  2. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Nikon.
     
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  3. Tomasko

    Tomasko No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you already have a Nikon camera, get Nikon, especially if you have more than that single lens. You're already familiar with the system. If you have just a single lens, then it doesn't really matter that much and just choose what you like more.

    Seriously, don't overthink this. It's just a tool and you can take great pictures and video with both.
     
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  4. Destin

    Destin Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    As of now, the Nikon is a clear winner.

    Though my recommendation to you would be to get a used D800 and invest the money you save into more lenses. For fashion photography the increased resolution, frame rate, and high iso performance really don’t make a difference unless you’re printing wall sized posters.

    And really, the single most important thing to improve fashion photos is lighting. If you don’t already have a way to run off camera lighting you should be investing in that before either a camera or a lens.
     
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  5. chuasam

    chuasam Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    D850 is complete overkill but oh so awesome.
     
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  6. Frank F.

    Frank F. engineering art Supporting Member

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    I have the D850 and she is a great camera, say 98% to 99% of what is possible today.

    I also have the D500 and she is 95% to 96% of what is possible today but at half the price. It is really only a very slight difference in quality and I would not want to miss the D500 for here qualities that are better than the D850 in some areas, like 10 fps without a grip and fancy extra battery and charger. Up to 20.000 ISO with mostly grain like luminance noise!!!!

    Consider to invest the difference in decent glass because you will need it for both.

    My secret finding, only for you: the AF-S 1.8/85G is superb on the D500. Breathtakingly so. Same goes for the 1.8/20G and you get both and a third decent lens for the difference!

    PS: A used 1.4/58G is in the budget. Great for fashion and portraits on the D500!!!

    PPS: don't go for cameras of earlier generations. For AF and WB alone the 5th generation (500, 850, 5) is worth the money and the D500 delivers by far the best bang for the buck!
     
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  7. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    First the video capabilities of Nikon in a blogging type situation is just fine. Yes, Canon does have a better system on some cameras that tracks much better when the scenes have fast movement. But Nikon video can and has been used for many video situations.

    But I agree with others that the D850 might be overkill for what you need. But if you believe you just might take photography more seriously. It definately will be a good camera to advance your skills with.

    But as Destin said, if you don't have good lighting and decent tripod. Maybe that should be your next investment. Or a combination of newer body like the D810 and lighting / tripod.

    One more point. Your 50mm f/1.8 will have a different field of view on the full frame D850. You might even want to check out a D500! That's a crop camera like your D60. But much better all around. Including very good AF system.
     
  8. goodguy

    goodguy Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    For professional work you will not find better cameras then the 5DIV and D850 and as the saying goes you cant go wrong with either one!
    But from pure specs position the D850 is walking all over the 5DIV, its pretty much better across the board then the 5DIV except in video follow focus as you already know.
    You underestimate the sensor performance, the D810 has significantly better dynamic range then the 5DIV (13.4 vs 14.8) that's a big advantage and I am assuming the D850 will indeed be as good if not even better.
    Extra resolution might be an advantage depending of what you need.
    Auto focus on the D850 is also better even though the 5DIV has excellent AF.
    D850 has 4K while the 5DIV while have 4K due to its old codec it is considered by all serious videographers to be unusable and even if you think you don't need 4K at the moment you will find the industry is moving that direction, also if I am not mistaking the 5DIV is shooting 4K on a crop while the D850 is using the full sensor.

    As an event photographer that also does videography I am not advising to get either of these cameras as an A role camera, they are so big and heavy, you want a lighter, smaller and more portable camera, I use a Sony mirrorless for video, I use Nikon for photography and Sony for video, put a huge camera on a gimbal and you will find yourself cursing and swearing soon after, also smaller camera lets you use smaller gimbal.

    So I can tell you as a working wedding professional I am now using the D850 and is still in the learning phase but so far I am blown away by the performance of this camera but I admit I still have a lot to learn to be able to get the full potential of this awesome camera, for video I advise to add a video dedicated camera like a Sony a6500 which is tiny, has a great video follow focus, amazing video quality with 4K and IBIS.
     
  9. Frank F.

    Frank F. engineering art Supporting Member

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    One last note: the D500 is much better than the D850 when it comes to manual focus.

    But I like both, can assure you of that.
     
  10. Frank F.

    Frank F. engineering art Supporting Member

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  11. returntovendor

    returntovendor TPF Noob!

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    Hi, thanks for responding! Could you please elaborate?

    I've only got two $100 prime lenses and don't feel too particularly attached to the system, so I'm trying to make a decision as unbiased from brand as possible and instead for which fits my needs (image quality, durability, and longevity) best. I agree, there couldn't be a wrong decision. But I do believe there could be a better decision.

    You think starting two generations back would be the best approach? Part of the reason I'm making a dramatic upgrade is because I want to future-proof my purchase as much as possible. I know I'd be going from a generationally "entry-level" DSLR to a highly advanced camera regardless of the decision. But if I could buy something which is within the realm of the latest technology then I'd feel confident that I had made a worthwhile and lasting investment.

    I don't plan on making wall-sized posters, but I do want the ability there in case I decide to. Do you feel the differences between these two cameras would significantly give the D850 the leg up when printing at that size?

    I agree, lighting is critical. I intend on buying a Flashpoint XPLOR 600 as well. Flashpoint XPLOR 600

    Any opinion on the MKIV?

    Low-light/available light portraiture is also among my interests. My understanding is that a full frame camera is going to have a significant advantage for noise in low light/high ISO.

    I have heard very good things about the D500 but haven't researched it. I will do that at your recommendation, as well as the aforementioned lenses. Thanks!

    Either of these cameras are definitely overkill for where I'm currently at. I wouldn't even say that I've outgrown what my D60 is capable of, aside from the resolution. My desire to make such a big leap is to give me a very high ceiling which I'll likely never hit. I don't want to make an incremental upgrade. I'd rather spend money on something which is sufficiently future-proofed.

    I agree on lighting, I plan to purchase a Flashpoint XPLOR 600 as well. Flashpoint XPLOR 600

    I hadn't considered the field of view difference vs full frame. Do you have a favorite portrait lens?

    Thanks for your response. From what I understand, you're saying that these specs which are different on paper WILL translate to a tangible real-world difference in terms of image quality? 13.4 vs 14.8 is a significant advantage? It is difficult for me to imagine what these numbers translate to in real life.

    Also, in the DPReview comparison tool, there are some instances in which the Canon looks better to me at higher ISO. Although I believe the numbers you're referring to are the DR differences at base ISO, correct? I also understand that DR becomes greatly reduced and closer between these two the further away from base ISO you get.

    Screen Shot 2017-10-05 at 8.07.20 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-10-05 at 8.07.35 AM.png

    Above are two examples where the MKIV appears to have an edge for my eye. Am I missing something?

    The videography is a distant afterthought and I would definitely do any paid work in a stills-only situation. I really do appreciate the recommendation on the Sony. I had not looked at that and am definitely very interested in it now.

    I've only ever used manual focus for setting the camera to infinity. I don't intend on using any manual-only lenses for my purposes. Is there a reason I'm overlooking where manual focus might be important to me?

    Thank you for the link! I'll look through these shots and see what it's capable of. I appreciate the real-world examples.
     
  12. ronlane

    ronlane What's next? Supporting Member

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    I shoot Canon but the scenario that you are mentioning, even I would take the D850. I've seen video out of it that are just fine. The 5D mk IV is a good camera but as a Canon shooter I was disappointed with it's specs.
     
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