not sure what iis wrong with my friend's camera, any ideas?

bc_steve

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We saw some hawks flying around while we were at work. Obviously we dropped what we were doing and grabbed our cameras. We both had a 70-200 f/2.8 with a 1.4x teleconverter. My friend has a 5D MKII. We compared our results after and mine were much sharper.

We were pretty sure it wasn't operator error so we did a bunch of comparison shots of stumps and other still objects. Mine was still much sharper. We tried removing his B+W clear filter, shooting without the TC, and using his 24-105L lens. We would have swapped bodies/lenses but mine is a Nikon (not trying to rip on Canon here, I know his pics should look better and I just want to help him with that).

Since switching lenses did not bring about any improvement, I am led to believe that it is the camera body. I don't think that it is front/back focussing because there is nothing in front or behind of the subject that is any sharper. I am out of ideas, can anyone help?
 

Dao

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Is there a samples? What about the focus point? 1 shot with center focus only? Shot at based ISO?
 

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Do your cameras have the same MP ratings and were you comparing JPEGs or RAW files?

If a camera has a higher MP value then the number of pixels in the final photo when viewed at full size is greater; as a result the photo is also more magnified when viewed at 100% view. As a result comparing a higher megapixel camera to a lower megapixel camera can make the higher MP camera appear to be softer; however when properly resized so that both photos are at the same dimensions the field should be more even.

If you were comparing JPEGs it could be that one of you has a higher in-camera default for sharpenig

If you were comparing RAWs it could also be that one of you has a higher default sharpening value during the RAW preview and editing stage.
 
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We both shoot RAW, and our MP ratings are pretty close, I think 16 vs 18. And he was using ISO 100 when I checked it (he had it on auto-ISO but it was a bright sunny day, so it set itself to 100).

I will try to get a picture tomorrow that shows what I am describing.
 

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The Canon might just have a more aggressive antialiasing filter on it, if it's a subtle difference.

All DSLRs have antialiasing filter that basically slightly blur the image on purpose, to reduce the effect of moire (the weird emergent patterns you perceive when viewing lots of tiny repeating patterns, like two screen doors in front of each other). The pixels on the camera are one tiny repeating pattern, and something like corrugated roofing on a far away building would be the second, and they will interfere and create distracting patterns in a way that wouldn't happen with film. So digital cameras blur just enough to prevent that. Different companies and models are liable to have difference strength filters. But this would only explain a minor difference. Like, only if you blow it up to 100% and squint.

If it's REALLY obvious at reasonable, non-100% sizes, then that's probably not it.
 

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