Almost four years after unveiling the EOS 5D Mark II, the camera that brought digital SLRs to Hollywood, Canon is releasing in less than three weeks its successor - the EOS 5D Mark III.
The new model is fitted with a 22.3-megapixel full-frame sensor, compared to 21.1 megapixels for its predecessor. It has a burst rate of 6fps at full resolution, and offers a 61-point AF system and 63-zone metering to provide greater speed, flexibility and accuracy, claims Canon.
"The EOS 5D Mark III represents a big step forward for the EOS 5D series," says Kieran Magee, marketing director of the professional imaging division at Canon Europe. "The EOS 5D Mark II is an exceptional camera and we've listened carefully to feedback from its passionate community of users to improve performance in every area. This camera has been designed to meet virtually any creative challenge - it's faster, more responsive and features the tools to adapt to everything from studio photography to creative videography, while producing results of the highest quality."
The EOS 5D Mark III inherits some of the features that were first introduced with the EOS-1D X - which, incidently, will only be released after the Mark III - such as the wide-area AF system that features 41 cross-type points and five dual cross-type points.
The camera has an eight-channel read out, and offers a sensitivity range of ISO 100 to ISO 25,600, expandable to ISO 102,400, "making it possible to capture clean, high quality pictures, even in extreme low-light conditions," says Canon.
The EOS 5D Mark III uses the new DIGIC 5+ image processor, allowing the camera to perform operations such as lens peripheral illumination correction, lens chromatic aberration correction (lateral and axial) and high ISO noise reduction.
Canon has introduced a new silent shooting mode that "dramatically" reduces the sound of the shutter and mirror for photographers that "want to avoid being noticed." The camera also features a new dedicated button for in-camera image rating to "make it easy for photographers to organise images ahead of post-production."
But, the EOS 5D Mark III is most-awaited for its video features, which Canon says have been improved to provide better Full HD performance. First, the camera has been redesigned to offer a movide mode switch and a recording button "enabling videographers to begin shooting immediately," says Canon. Also, the new full-frame sensor combines with the processing power of the DIGIC 5+ image sensor "to improve image quality by virtually eradicating the presence of moiré, false colour and other artefacts," claims the firm.
The ESO 5D Mark III has manual exposure control and an enhanced range of high bit-rate video compression options, with intraframe (ALL-I) and interframe (IPB) methods both supported. "Variable frame rates range from 24fps to 60fps, and the addition of SMPTE timecode support provides greater editing flexibility and easier integration into multi-camera shoots," adds Canon. "Users can also check and adjust audio during recording via the camera's Quick Control screen and a headphone socket enables sound level monitoring both during and after shooting. Enhanced processing power provided by DIGIC 5+ also makes it possible to conveniently trim the length of recorded movies in-camera."
The camera is housed in a magnesium body with advanced weather proofing. It features an enhanced version of the Intelligent Viewfinder first introduced with the EOS 7D, has a 3.2-inch Clear View II LCD screen, and is compatible with both CompactFlash and SD cards.
The EOS 5D Mark III will be released this month, priced at £3000 (€3570 / $3500).
For more details, visit www.canon.eu.
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