Every bit I have already pointed out earlier, Canon finally integrated its best autofocus system into the 5D Mark III. Instead of the old 9 focus point organisation with a unmarried cantankerous-type sensor that was used on both the original 5D and 5D Marking Two, Canon decided to apply the aforementioned professional AF system information technology uses on its flagship Canon 1D X DSLR. This was a very welcome move because if Catechism continued with its old AF system, it would have severely threatened the 5D line, making the 5D Mark III a worthless upgrade. The new 61 signal AF system is the well-nigh advanced AF organization Canon developed thus far, making autofocus the most appealing feature of the photographic camera. With a whopping 41 cantankerous-type sensors, Catechism is pretty serious nearly fixing its damaged reputation (the whole fiasco with the previous AF systems on the 1D line cost the visitor many sports and wild fauna photographers). In comparison, the Nikon D800 and D4 DSLRs have 51 AF points with 15 cantankerous-type sensors.
But all these numbers can be just numbers if the AF organisation is not reliable. I have been shooting with Nikon pro bodies since the original D3 and I observe the Multi-CAM 3500FX arrangement to be very reliable. The new Advanced Multi-CAM 3500FX that is featured on the D800 and D4 is fifty-fifty better considering it tin autofocus with f/8 lenses. Having been spoiled with an excellent AF system, my goal was to appraise Canon’southward 61 point AF system and see how it fares in comparison, specially when shooting in low lite situations. As I shot with the Canon 5D Mark III, I took notes of my observations in different situations.
The center focus point of the Canon 5D Marking 3 is very fast and accurate, fifty-fifty in low-low-cal situations. For most of my testing, I used 2 primes – the Catechism 50mm f/one.2L and the Canon 24mm f/1.4L, as well as two zoom lenses – the Canon 17-40mm f/4L and the Catechism 70-200mm f/4L IS. All iv performed very well in the center focus bespeak expanse and I had a lot of keepers, I would say about the same every bit I get with the Nikon AF organisation. In fact, well-nigh focus points around the eye area (full of 27) were dead on most of the time, which is very good news. Another plus of the new Catechism AF arrangement is its achieve – the 61 AF points cover a bigger viewfinder surface area than Nikon’s AF system and more focus points give you lot the flexibility to pick a precise point to focus on while composing.
If you are used to the old Canon 5D & 5D Mark II mentality of always using the middle focus point and constantly recomposing your shots, you lot don’t accept to do the same with this camera – just pick the AF point yous desire to use and as long as there are plenty texture and contrast on your discipline, you lot should not have to worry about out of focus subjects. Every bit I take explained in my DSLR Autofocus Modes article, you have to be conscientious when focusing with one focus betoken and recomposing, because the focus aeroplane changes. While this might not be noticeable with wide-angle lenses at small apertures, information technology surely can issue in blurry images with longer lenses at large apertures. With the new AF system, you take so many focus points, that you practise not take to play the old focus and recompose game.
The left and correct cantankerous-type sensors also work pretty well, simply they are not as accurate as of the ones in the center. Other focus points located at the very far left and right can exist tricky to deal with and I try to avoid them since they conspicuously lack the precision of the cantankerous-type sensors. I ended upward turning off these focus points, as they seemed to work rather poorly with slower lenses and the Catechism 50mm f/1.2L (which tin can be tricky to piece of work with).
There are and so many customization options for the autofocus organisation, that it took me some time to empathize how the AF system functions. The Canon language for AF functions is totally different from Nikon’s, which fabricated information technology tougher for me to get a quick grasp of the system. I would encourage you to experiment with the AF system using the camera transmission – there is a lot to comprehend. The really nice characteristic of the AF system on the Canon 5D Marking III is the provided presets on the first page of the AF setup carte du jour. Instead of manually tweaking AF settings (which can exist quite painful to understand), Canon provided 6 user presets for different shooting scenarios:
Now, this is a actually not bad idea that I promise Canon volition employ in all of its cameras going forwards. It is then much easier to option a preset based on your needs, rather than having to dabble with all the AF settings and the not-and so-like shooting fish in a barrel-to-understand technical language.
Overall, I am quite impressed past Canon’s new 61-signal AF system. Canon did the right matter past including it in the 5D Mark 3. The AF organization alone, in my opinion, is worth the upgrade from 5D Marking II. Finally, the Canon 5D Mark III is condign an appealing camera for sports and wildlife photographers, thanks to its fast autofocus and 6 fps speed (more on the outburst speed and buffer size in section 9 of this review).