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Thread: 1D MKii vs 550D and vs 70D

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  1. #1
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    Smile 1D MKii vs 550D and vs 70D

    Hi everyone,

    For about one year I have been using a 550D with a 24-105 L 4 is and with a 70-200 L 2.8 lenses and I have to say I have been happy with my IQ.

    Recently though I bought a used 1D MKii to try for the first time a xD body, and I loved it! Loved the body quality, the 45 af points and the extra customization, but when comparing the jpg images that both produced I have the impression that the 550D delivers a better image.
    I didn't compare the raw images yet, but I have the feeling the 550D would come out victorious from this fight.

    So I ask, leaving aside all the other differences between them, would you say that any of the cameras have a much better IQ then the other?
    Please add on this comparison the 70D as well to be able to compare to a new digic5 as well OBS: I understand the differences between them, my questions here is about IQ only!

    I am asking because I am not sure if I should keep both 550D and 1D MKii or sell both and get a 70D that seems to be a good upgrade from the 550D and not that far from the 45af points quality from the 1D.

    Any light on the question will be very appreciated! Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Ignore the CPU that's inside the camera, period. Putting a Digic99 into a camera instead of a Digic.001 just means that there's more computational power to execute the task of building the image files. If there was a way to remove the Digic5 from a 70D and drop in a Digic3, I'd bet you'd see a significant frame rate decrease. Likewise, if a CPU upgrade was possible, you'd probably see a more consistent frame rate at high ISO speeds.

    The 1-series is going to have a higher quality sensor and a higher-capability A/D converter on the back end of the sensor. However, generational improvements have led to better sensor manufacturing techniques that provide a better image quality. If you're truly talking about a 1D2, you're talking about 2004 technology, which would be second-generation 1D vintage. The 550D is 2010 vintage, while the 70D is 2013 vintage. I would simply expect better image quality every two years, so the 70D is probably the winner there.

  3. #3
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    Hi peety3,

    Thanks for your answer.

    I understand your point about Digic5 and makes perfect sense, but about the IQ rather have you ever tried to compare?
    Even if the 70D would be the winner would be interesting to know by how much. How much better can it be?
    I think is a really interesting question, since many people could benefit from the information considering that older secondhand models cameras have a price tag considerably lower and this information would be welcomed by people with a low budget but that want to keep the IQ high...

  4. #4
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    It really depends on which part of image quality you're looking at. My 1DsII will blow away my 7D in terms of high ISO noise, despite the age. Aside from the recent full frames, I haven't seen much noise improvements over the years. All the crop bodies have been pretty similar in terms of noise, I think. If the 70D has similar noise levels to the 7D, you should see less noise on the 1D until ISO1600.The larger pixels on the full-frame means slightly soft glass will appear sharper on the 1D. Chromatic aberrations on the 85mm f/1.8 will appear thinner and be less noticable. Your 1D, being a 1.3x crop should see some benefit from all these areas, but not as much as a full-frame camera. But high-quaility full-frame compatible glass is expensive. A lens that appears fine on a 1.6x crop body may have sharpness and distortion issues near the edge of the frame when used on a 1.3x or full-frame body.
    On Flickr - Namethatnobodyelsetook on Flickr
    1DsII | 7D | 7DII | 10-18mm STM | 18-135mm STM | 24-70mm f/4L | Sigma 35mm f/1.4 | 50mm f/1.8 | 85mm f/1.8 | 70-300mm f/4-5.6L

  5. #5
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    Hi David, thanks for your answer and you have a good point. I forgot to mention that I meant the IQ for ISO 800 or lower. The lenses in my case shouldn't be a problem, as I do most of my shooting with L lenses.

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    Senior Member clemmb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mhhenn View Post
    but when comparing the jpg images that both produced I have the impression that the 550D delivers a better image.
    First of all, welcome to the forum.
    I shoot with a 1DmkIIn and a 5D.
    If you examine your images I think you will find the 550D is sharper due to the higher pixel count but the 1D will have lower noise at higher ISO, better contrast, better color, etc... Bottom line they all return great IQ. I love my 1DmkIIn. I do not think I would like a 7D or 70D but I do find myself wanting more pixels
    Mark

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    Quote Originally Posted by clemmb View Post
    First of all, welcome to the forum.
    I shoot with a 1DmkIIn and a 5D.
    If you examine your images I think you will find the 550D is sharper due to the higher pixel count but the 1D will have lower noise at higher ISO, better contrast, better color, etc... Bottom line they all return great IQ. I love my 1DmkIIn. I do not think I would like a 7D or 70D but I do find myself wanting more pixels
    Thanks I feel welcomed already

    I am relatively new to photography, so I don't have much knowledge about older systems. As soon as I haven't been shooting for too long with the 1D MKii I think I am being just extra sensitive about using such an "old" technology.

    I do miss as well some more pixels and a bigger screen do review the photos on the 1D mkii

  8. #8
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    Mark, I keep forgetting that the 1DmkII is significantly lower-resolution, which, yes, will affect how much detail you can capture. My T1i, 7D, and 1DsmkII have all been about the same (15 to 18 MP).
    On Flickr - Namethatnobodyelsetook on Flickr
    1DsII | 7D | 7DII | 10-18mm STM | 18-135mm STM | 24-70mm f/4L | Sigma 35mm f/1.4 | 50mm f/1.8 | 85mm f/1.8 | 70-300mm f/4-5.6L

  9. #9
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    mhhenn,

    To ask a couple of questions, why do you want to upgrade? Do you find something deficient with your current set up? Is there something you find desirable about the 70D?

    There are a couple of online resources that evaluate cameras, TDP being my favorite one. But to answer your question, I went to DXOmark. Now, DXO is fairly well maligned as they ultimately try to compress a camera's image quality into a single number and also have a tendency to try to declare "winners" between camera bodies. Neither of these makes people happy. But, they do publish their test results, which you can find here for the three camera bodies in question.

    I only did a quick scroll through, but at least in terms of sensor performance, the DXO test results for these three camera bodies make them look very similar to me. Their "overall" score is +/- 1 pt. If you look under "Measurements" you can see the more direct comparisons that I prefer. In it, signal to noise ratio,tonal range, and color sensitivity are very similar, almost having to look at specific ISO results to differentiate. I give dynamic range to the 550D and 70D. But, overall, these are very similar results. So I would expect very similar image quality from these three bodies. At least, it will take a lot of detailed analysis to tell the difference, which may explain what you are seeing in your evaluation.

    So, if that is correct, it gets down to features. Is there a feature you want on the 70D in comparison to what you currently own? If yes, upgrade. If no, start buying flashes, tripods, and lenses or just go out and shoot with what you have.

    Good luck,
    Brant
    Last edited by Kayaker72; 10-11-2013 at 11:20 AM.

  10. #10
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    Hi Brant,

    Quote Originally Posted by Kayaker72 View Post
    mhhenn,

    To ask a couple of questions, why do you want to upgrade? Do you find something deficient with your current set up? Is there something you find desirable about the 70D?
    The topic went a bit out of the way My point from the beginning was to know if any one knew if the IQ on ISO < 800 had any big difference between the 1D MKii, 550D and the 70D. Since most of the reviews normally compare the new version with the previous model, I was a little lost on the matter.
    But answering your question. Considering that the IQ is very good on all cameras, I don't really have a reason to upgrade. I do like that the 70D has the Af system from the 7D, that it uses SD memory cards and that the lcd screen is articulated and that is it I think. I never tried the touch screen so I can't know if I will like or not. Bottom line, now that I know that the IQs' are similar, I am good
    Quote Originally Posted by Kayaker72 View Post
    There are a couple of online resources that evaluate cameras, TDP being my favorite one. But to answer your question, I went to DXOmark. Now, DXO is fairly well maligned as they ultimately try to compress a camera's image quality into a single number and also have a tendency to try to declare "winners" between camera bodies. Neither of these makes people happy. But, they do publish their test results, which you can find here for the three camera bodies in question.
    That was exactly what I was looking for!! Thank you!! Better than that just if they had 1 photo from each with the same settings and same image processing

    Thank you again and good luck to you too!

    Mathias

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