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Canon’s 5D Mark III Review of ISO Image Samples Full Size

5D Mark III In The Dark

I’m sure a lot of Canon folks are excited about Canon’s latest EOS 5D Mark III [check price], particularly with, as always, the high ISO image samples.

I’ve asked a friend of mine, Sherwin Dy, to share some full-resolution, sample images from the 5D Mark III from ISO 100 all the way to the expanded ISO of 102,400

Canon EOS 5D Mark III DSLR

Typical Low Light for the 5D Mark III

The full-size images are hosted on Flickr to save me some bandwidth, so go ahead and click the images before to see the full size sample for pixel-peeping pleasure.

The images are shot with the following parameters typical of most low-light conditions.

  • Lens: Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM
  • Focal Length: 95mm
  • Aperture: f/5.6
  • Distance from Subject: 0.9m
  • Metering: Evaluative
  • File Parameters: Fine JPEG, Standard Picture Style
ISO 100 ISO 200 ISO 400
ISO 800 ISO 1600 ISO 3200
ISO 6400 ISO 12,800 ISO 25,600
ISO 51,200 ISO 102,400

Remember that you can view the full-size versions clicking on the images above, which loads the photos from my personal Flickr page.

From the looks of it, the Canon 5D Mark III’s high ISO capabilities are pretty impressive. At ISO 6400, the images are still crisp and noise is well controlled.

At ISO 12,800, the noise reduction of the JPEG engine starts to smear things a bit. Canon seems to preserve the ‘smooth look’ that they’ve been known for since their first DSLR. Sacrificing a little resolution and detail by introducing some smoothing to hide the noise.

At web or small (8R) print-size, ISO 12,800 still looks pretty detailed and sharp even without going through post-processing.

At ISO 51,200, banding and excessive noise starts to be obvious even at small image sizes (800×600 range). ISO 102,400 will only usable for the smallest of prints and web-sizes under 600px or so, but the details are still held admirably at this point.

It’s safe to say that in poor, typical indoor lighting, the Canon EOS 5D Mark III high-ISO capabilities are quite admirable. The quality of today’s full-frame, ISO 12,800 looks like yesteryear’s ISO 1600.

Stay tuned for a more thorough review of the Canon 5D Mark III in the near future.