• 35mm 864.0mm2
  • 22.3 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 25,600
  • APS-C 337.5mm2
  • 20.2 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 16,000

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Differences

Canon 5D Mark III advantages over Canon 7D Mark II

  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 6.25 vs 4.11 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Higher effective ISO
    2,293 vs 1,082 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 950 vs 670 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Less shutter lag
    0.12 vs 0.25 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.71x vs 0.63x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • Higher extended ISO
    102400 vs 51200 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Canon 7D Mark II advantages over Canon 5D Mark III

  • Less expensive
    $1849 vs $2899
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • Built-in GPS
    GPS vs None
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Yes vs No
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • More cross-type AF points
    65 vs 41
    Cross-type AF points improve autofocus performance
  • Newer
    3 years vs 5 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    9.5 fps vs 6.0 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    103 vs 63 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster RAW shooting
    9.5 fps vs 6.0 fps
    Faster RAW shooting in burst mode
  • Bigger RAW buffer
    26 vs 18 shots
    Larger buffer for RAW shots (burst mode)

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Top deck display
    Both provide
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • External Mic Jack
    Both provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
    Both provide
    Much better viewfinder picture fidelity
  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use an external screen to monitor or review video
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Dual card slots
    Both provide
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Headphone jack
    Both provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Neither provide
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

User reviews

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Your purchases support this site

Buy the Canon 5D Mark III

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Canon 7D Mark II

Review Excerpt

  • Superb still and video image quality; Powerful, fast, and accurate AF system with loads of cross-type points, loads of configurability and great frame coverage; Rugged, weather-sealed body with great control layout and user-interface configurability.

  • Dynamic range is limited by noise in deep shadows; Somewhat heavy-handed noise suppression and sharpening at default settings. (Shooting RAW avoids both.); No AF illuminator.

  • Excellent image quality; High ISO performance improved over predecessor; Excellent burst speeds (up to 10fps); Significantly improved buffer depths; 65-pt AF system; Dual Pixel CMOS AF; Can focus down to f/8 (great for teleconverters); 1080/60p video; Headphone and mic jacks; Rugged build quality.

  • Autofocus speed (AF shutter lag) slower than 7D and 70D; Mediocre battery life for a pro DSLR; Dynamic range at low to moderate ISOs not as good as competitors; Phase-detect AF did not perform as well as expected in our low-light AF tests; No built-in Wi-Fi; No autofocus for 1080/60p video.

The Competition

Compared to Canon 7D

Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 7D
  • $2644
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $1399
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Internal flash
Canon 7D Mark II
Canon 7D
  • $1449
  • APS-C
  • Higher effective ISO
  • Built-in GPS
  • $1399
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Less shutter lag

Compared to Canon 6D

Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 6D
  • $2644
  • 35mm
  • More cross-type AF points
  • Less shutter lag
  • $1356
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
Canon 7D Mark II
Canon 6D
  • $1449
  • APS-C
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • More telephoto lens reach
  • $1356
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Canon 5D Mark IV

Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark IV
  • $2644
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger pixels
  • $3299
  • 35mm
  • Shoot 4K video
  • Touchscreen
Canon 7D Mark II
Canon 5D Mark IV
  • $1449
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Internal flash
  • $3299
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony A850

Canon 5D Mark III
Sony A850
  • $2644
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Canon 7D Mark II
Sony A850
  • $1449
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Built-in GPS
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization

Compared to Sony A99

Canon 5D Mark III
Sony A99
  • $2644
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $2064
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Canon 7D Mark II
Sony A99
  • $1449
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $2064
  • 35mm
  • Focus peaking
  • Larger sensor
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