Canon 6D Mark II Performance

Timing and Performance

Very good performance for a prosumer full-frame DSLR.

Startup/Play to Record

Power on
to first shot

~0.5 second

Time it takes to turn on and capture a shot.

Play to Record,
first shot

~0.3 second

Time until first shot is captured.

Powering on and taking a shot was quick at about 0.5 second, the same as the 6D. Switching from Play to Record mode and taking a shot was slightly faster, at about 0.3 second, also the same as its predecessor.

Shutter Response (Lag Time)
Optical Viewfinder

Full Autofocus
Single-point (center) AF

0.167 second

Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture. All AF timing measured with a Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM lens.

Full Autofocus
Single-point AF
TTL flash enabled


Time to capture while forcing flash to fire. Preflash metering pulses from flash often slow shutter response.

Manual Focus

0.063 second

For most cameras, shutter lag is less in manual focus than autofocus, but usually not as fast as when the camera is "prefocused".


0.059 second

Time to capture, after half-pressing and holding shutter button.

Live View

Live View

0.101 second

Time to capture, after half-pressing and holding shutter button.

In terms of the Canon 6D Mark II's ability to determine that it's properly focused when shooting the same target multiple times using the optical viewfinder with a Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM lens, its full autofocus shutter response was very good for a prosumer DSLR. We measured 0.167 second for full AF lag using single point (center) AF, compared to 0.290s for the 6D.

Shutter lag using manual focus dropped to only 63 milliseconds, compared to 74ms for the 6D, which is very fast. "Prefocusing" the camera by half-pressing and holding down the shutter button before the final exposure was a bit faster at 59 milliseconds, the same as the 6D.

The Canon 6D Mark II's prefocused shutter lag time in Live View mode was 0.101 second, which is quite fast for a DSLR, but a little slower than the 0.066s we measured for the 6D. Note that we no longer test full AF lag in Live View mode for DSLRs, because the lens used makes such a huge difference that comparing is pointless. We'll try to comment on real-world Live View AF performance in our shooter's reports.

To minimize the effect of different lens' focusing speed, we test AF-active shutter lag with the lens already set to the correct focal distance.

Cycle Time (shot to shot)

Single Shot mode
Large/Fine JPEG

< 0.3 second

Time per shot, averaged over a few frames.

Single Shot mode

< 0.3 second

Time per shot, averaged over a few frames.

Early shutter


Some cameras don't snap another shot if you release and press the shutter too quickly in Single Shot mode, making "No" the preferred answer.

Continuous High mode
Large/Fine JPEG

0.15 second
(6.49 fps);
98 frames total;
4 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 98 shot buffer capacity, then slowed to an average of 0.19s or 5.35 fps when buffer was full.

Continuous High mode

0.15 second
(6.51 fps);
20 frames total;
8 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shot buffer capacity, then slowed to an average of 0.48s or 2.07 fps when buffer was full.

Continuous High mode
RAW + Large/Fine

0.15 second
(6.51 fps);
18 frames total;
11 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over 18 shot buffer capacity, then slowed to an average of 0.66s or 1.51 fps when buffer was full, with a lot of variation.

Flash recycling


Flash at maximum output.

*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s UHS-I SDHC card. Slower cards may produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode. ISO sensitivity and noise reduction settings can also affect cycle times and burst mode performance.

Single-shot cycle times were so fast that they were difficult to accurately measure as they depend on the tester's nimbleness and ability to maintain an optimum rhythm. (Note that we no longer test single-shot mode with just RAW files, as the results are usually somewhere in between JPEG and RAW+JPEG modes.)

Continuous high mode speeds were very good considering the resolution, sensor size and class. We measured about 6.5 frames-per-second regardless of file type compared to only 4.4 fps for the 6D, matching Canon's specification. The 6D Mark II also has low-speed and silent continuous shooting modes which are both rated by Canon at 3.0 fps, however we did not test those modes in the lab.

Buffer depth for best quality JPEGs was generous at 98 frames before the camera started slowing down. While short of Canon's 150 frame spec (our target for this test was designed to be difficult to compress), the 6D Mark II only slowed down to about 5.4 fps when the buffer was full. When shooting RAW files buffer depths dropped to 20 RAW frames and 18 RAW+JPEG frames, which is good for the class and pretty close to Canon's spec of 21 and 18 frames respectively. Although the 6D was capable of longer bursts when shooting JPEGs (up to 1250 frames), keep in mind its smaller files and its ~4.4 fps burst rate which is slower than the 6D Mark II's buffer-full rate. And the Mark II managed 3 more RAW and 11 more RAW+JPEG frames than the 6D did in our tests.

Buffer clearing times were good considering the resolution, ranging from 4 seconds after 98 best quality JPEGs to 11 seconds after a burst of 18 RAW+JPEG frames with a fast UHS-I SDHC card. And the camera lets you change settings while the buffer is clearing, however you cannot view just-shot images until cleared.

Bottom line, the Canon 6D Mark II offers very good performance for its class, with quick startup, fast autofocus, low shutter lag, very good burst speeds and good buffer depths. A noticeable and worth-while improvement over its predecessor in autofocus and burst performance.


Battery Life
Excellent battery life for a compact full-frame DSLR.

Operating Mode Number of Shots
Still Capture,
(CIPA standard, Optical Viewfinder)
Still Capture,
(CIPA standard, Live View LCD)

The Canon 6D Mark II comes with a custom LP-E6N rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack and ships with a dedicated battery charger. Battery life is excellent for a compact full-frame DSLR at 1200 shots per charge, but keep in mind the 6D Mark II has no built-in flash which is normally enabled for 50% of shots during CIPA battery life testing. Of course Live View mode draws more power reducing battery life considerably. We recommend you pick up a spare battery and keep it freshly charged and on-hand, or consider purchasing the BG-E21 battery grip which doubles battery life with a second battery installed.

The table above shows the number of shots the Canon 6D Mark II is capable of (on a fully-charged rechargeable battery), based on CIPA battery-life and/or manufacturer standard test conditions.

(Interested readers can find an English translation of the CIPA DC-002 standards document here. (180K PDF document))


Editor's Picks