canon 5d Mark III hands on full review

Canon EOS 5d Mark III –  hands on full review Fast specifications, prices, options Welcome to Canon EOS 5Mark III full review. I know i am about 2 years late on this […]

Canon EOS 5d Mark III –  hands on full review

  1. Fast specifications, prices, options

Welcome to Canon EOS 5Mark III full review. I know i am about 2 years late on this camera, but I have made myself a commitment to review the entire Canon range and the 5d Mark III is a must for me as I have owned and used 2 5d Mark II for many years and took hundreds of weddings with them.

This is a top quality very popular camera today, of the high end enthusiast and professional photographer who can afford a 3 thousands dollars price ticket.

It is a full frame 22.3 MP camera, with a CMOS Sensor 36×24 mm. that means the images will come out 5760×3840 pixels which is large enough for anyone, unless you want print large billboards on the street

– shutter speed from 30 seconds to 1/8000th of a second

– 6 frames per second continuous shooting

– dual slot CF cards and SD cards which is fantastic option to use either more memory or duplicate the shots onto different cards, a very reliable and secure way to avoid any cards damage

– 61 autoficus points from which 41 one are cross type.

– shots video full HD 1920 x1080 p at maxim 30 frames per second and 1280×720 at maximum 60 fps which is less than the canon 7d Mark II

– 3.2 inch LCD monitor with 100% coverage

–  weigh 860 grams

  1. Physical features, dials, LCD, Buttons, weight, battery, card

this is one of the largest DSLR’s out there, similar size with 5d Mark II and canon 7D mark II and the arrangements of all buttons and dials is almost the same.

top right:

shutter button, WB, AF-Drive, ISO and light button,

Manual Focus

Dial wheel


– AF-ON back button, zoom and star,

– video and still shooting section, with video on off button,

– directional joystick with multifunctions,

– Quick settings Button,

– back dial and set button


– on/off button

menu and info

pictrue style

rate button


play and delete buttons

LEFT jacks

– microphoner and ear phone , nice feature for videographers so you can actually listen the sound being recorded , a flash jack, and an intervalometer input. unfortunately here the Canon 7d Mark II has an integrated intervalometer which would have been nice . one AV and one HDMI outputs.

TOP left the shooting mode dial with automatic, Time priority, Aperture priority, Manual Bulc and 2 custom modes

– we have hot shoe for flash, not pop up flash as it seems that professional do not want it, but I myself like the 7D Mark II that I actually would like to know it is there. So no pop up flash that means I cannot trigger an external unit without a remote controller, which is disappointing in this day and age.


lens release button and the infrared lamp and a aperture simulation button which will close the lens aperture to show it if you want to see it.


  1. Menu and settings

In regards to the menu and settings, we have a classical Canon Menu with lots of features organised like all other cameras, as complex as the Canon 7d Mark II as I have presented in a different video , but with less options with which is bit disspointing.

so I am going to go through it a little bit in more detail as I am sure people wanting to buy this camera, will not be bored.

So we have got tabs from left to right organised in sub tabs for shooting, Autofocus, 3 play tabs, 4 set up tabs, 4 custom functions tabs

we have got first the shooting 4 tabs

tab 1, image quality, image review, beep function, release shutter without a card,less aberration correction, flash control and mirror lock up

tab 2 – exposure compensation,ISO settings,  auto light optimizer,White balance,  custom white balance, white balance shift bracketing, , colour space,

tab 3- picture style, long exposure noise reduction, High ISO speed noise reduction, Highlight tome priority, Dust delete data, Multiple exposure which is very nice feature to have and HDR, another interesting thing to have in the camera, so not much need for post production

tab 4 – live view, autofocus mode, grid display, Aspect ratio, Exposure simulation, silent LV shooting, and metering timer

Autofocus tabs 1-5

tab1 – different types of autofocus cases, they are new to me, I will focus them later in a different video, as they are about the type of movement you are shooting. it makes difference between moving, accelerations, etc

tab 2 – AI servo image priority one and 2 – not sure about this yet

tab3 – USM lens electronic manual focus, AF- assist beam firing, one shot AF release prior

Tab 4 – lens drive when autofocus is impossible, Selectable Autofocus points, Selection mode for the autofocus area, AS area selection method, orientation linked AF point

tab 5 – Manual selection pattern, AF point display during focus, Viewfinder illumination and Autofocus microadjustment

as you can see this is a top focusing system with plenty of settings to choose from, and we will worry about that separately.

Play Tabs

– tab 1, protect, rotate erase images, print order, Imaeg copy, raw image processing

tab 2- resize, rating, slideshow, image trasnfer and image jump,

tab3 – highlight alert, focus point display, playback grid, histogram, movie play count, magnification, Control over HDMI

Settings tabs

tab 1- record function card/ folder, file numbering, name, rotate and format card,

tab 2 – power off, LCD brightness, Dat and time, Language, Viewfinder grid display, GPS settings, and HDMI frame rate

tab 3 – video system, Battery info, sensor cleaning, Info button options, and rate button options

tab 4 – custom shooting modes, clear settings, copyright info, and firmware version info

Custom functions tabs

tab 1 – exposure level increments, iso speed settings increments, bracketing auto cancel, Bracketing sequence, number of shots, and safety shift

tab 2, warnings, LC shooting area display, Dial direction during shooting, Multifunction lock, custom controls

tab 3 – cropping information, default erase option

tab 4 – clear all custom functions

finally i hope you are still awake, custom menu settings where you can select your favourite settings and save them here rather than going through this exhausting and long list of tabs and settings



Canon EOS 5D Mark III full review

4. video settings

If you switch the camera in video mode, one more shooting mode tab will be added and tabs 4 and 5 will be different to suit.

so tab 4 – Autofocus mode with lice mode and face detection, grid display, movie size, and please note we cannot shoot more than 30 fps at full HD 1920×1080, less than the 7d Mark II, Sound recording, Silent shooting and metering timer

tab 5 – time code, silent control, movie shooting button, and HDMI output.

one thing I need to mention here is that 5d MARK III does not have movie servo autofocus, so if you leave your camera on a tripod it will not follow a moving subject by itself , which in my opinion it is a deal breaker for anyone who wants to do video seriously.

5. photo test

The photo test will be taken against the 7d Mark II , the closes and the better brother in many ways, but not a full frame sensor

6. video test

as a video I am going to test both these cameras in the worst shooting conditions as that is the best way to tell the difference and test the real performance.

7. why you should buy – pros

If this camera is within your budget, this is a top quality camera, you cannot go wrong with

– resolution –22.3 mp is pretty good in today standards so you will get plenty of detail

– the highest quality any camera can get these days. there is nothing on the market that will give you a better quality picture. larger maybe, but not better

– this is a work horse with impressive features, specifications and overall outstanding performance

– advanced processor and quality of the outcome

– fantastic ISO performance, and GPS included


8.why you should not buy – cons

Usually price is one of the most important in a buying decision for everyone. The price point is high for people with a small budget

– this is a large and bulky camera, and heavy for the average tourist


even if This camera  should not miss any serious Canon shooter bag, there are few things I believe that are not present unfortunately and the cheaper brother 7d Mark II has such as

– movie servo autofocus  – deal breaker for videographers

– WI-FI settings

– Intervalometer

– lower frame rate 6fps. even the 70D can do better than that at 7 FPS


9.where to buy from

I am going to place few links below where you can buy this camera from if you wish, amazong, BH photo video and adorama the biggest retailers



I was really looking forward testing this camera as I am a 5d Mark II previous owner. The camera is perfect for any serious photographers who do not care about video and can afford the price point. it comes with a fantastic quality, low light performance and there is not much better way up than this.

probably today, 5d Mark III is already a bit seasoned as a product and there are better versions of the sensor and processor.

but if you are in the market for a top quality full frame camera, this will not disappoint you and that is not me saying, it is world well know.

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About Christian Tudor

professional photographer, main editor at Academy of Photography and