Cameras with more dynamic range allow you to take photos with dramatic differences in highlight and shadow areas while retaining detail in both.
Think of a brilliant sunset on a rocky beach: Bright sunset in the background, with dark rocks in the foreground. High dynamic range means more of the extremes will be faithfully reproduced.
Dynamic range test data courtesy of DxO Mark.D7000 test data on DxO Mark 5D Mark III test data on DxO Mark
Maximum effective ISO is an estimate of the highest sensitivity at which a camera can capture excellent quality photos.
Cameras with higher effective ISO will be better choices for indoor photography, night shooting, and indoor sports photography, especially if you intend to make large prints.
You can learn more at our glossary entry.
Maximum effective ISO test data courtesy of DxO Mark.5D Mark III test data on DxO Mark D7000 test data on DxO Mark
Very good image quality; Better than average noise vs. detail handling at high ISOs; Very good dynamic range in JPEGs, excellent in RAW files; Lots of high-end features in a relatively compact body; 6 fps burst mode.
Viewfinder not as accurate as specified; Viewfinder doesn't show ISO unless adjusting; No live histogram in Live View mode; No phase-detect Live View AF mode.
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.