The Canon 5D Mark II.
A camera that completely changed the digital SLR game.
When I first wrote about it around a year and half ago, I would’ve given up everything I owned for it. Today, I would still do the same. However, Canon decided that they would lend me the camera without me having to give up my possessions.
After my Round Table Meeting with Canon in December, I was lent the Canon 5D Mark II for 3 whole weeks, most of which would be spent at home in India. I got the camera literally 12 hours before my plane left and the moment I held it in my hands, I fell in love with it.
Every photograph looked stunning, every video looked brilliant, I could sing praises about it for hours at end. One thing is for certain, this is not going to be a technical review of the camera. If you want a technical review, head over to DPReview’s 40 page review. This is going to be a summary of a personal experience with the camera, a brief narrative of what I loved about the camera, what I didnt like and how it fit into my life.
The camera didnt handle particularly different from my 40D except for the fact that it was considerably heavier. The button layout felt very similar as did the menu. The viewfinder was absolutely fantastic, the joy of full frame is really something else. The high-res screen was a much needed upgrade and was gorgeous to look at, although it was a battery drainer. The High ISO capability was outstanding, and being able to take photos lit with nothing but a LED from a crappy phone and make it look like strobes was definitely fun. We shot plenty of videos at dusk, making full use of the sensor and the bokeh with a 50mm f/1.8.
One of my minor complaints with the camera was the autofocusing which didnt seem to have much improvement over my 40D. It proved quite annoying when trying to autofocus in the dark since ultimately it wasnt the ISO that prevented me from taking a photo but rather the focusing. Hopefully Canon are working to sort this out soon, and I’ve heard the 7D has a better autofocus system.
It wasnt only I who fell in love with the camera, it was pretty much everyone who laid their eyes on it. A couple of my friends in India were considering not letting me leave for England so that we wouldn’t have to return the camera. We made the most of it in the 3 weeks I had it and secretly hoped that Canon would let me keep it forever.
During my last day with the camera, I made a small project titled ‘A Day in my Life’ wherein I took photos of my daily activities right from the time I woke up till I went to bed over the course of 16 hours. It was great fun, especially while trying to find an artistic angle for things that would normally be deemed as boring and then attempting to use the tripod and setting the camera to the perfect position. You can see all the 30 photos here.
I got quite attached to the camera and was gutted when I had to return it. I’m back to my loyal 40D now but n eedless to say, the Canon 5D Mark II will definitely be my next investment.
Update – Canon Camera Buzz has been kind of enough to link to my project, check out their post here!