Canon EOS 6D 20.2 MP CMOS Digital SLR Camera with 3.0-Inch LCD (Body Only)
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on March 14, 2013
I spent about a month researching the Nikon D600, Nikon D800, Canon 6D, and the Canon 5D iii. I'm a professional digital matte painter in the movie industry. I spend a lot of time shooting reference images of landscapes and architecture from unique locations throughout the US and the world.

After trying each camera at a local shop, I decided to narrow down my options to the Canon 6D and Nikon D600. I'm not loyal to either brand. My main priorities for a full frame is image quality and handling. I even downloaded RAW samples and compared them in Photoshop.
Here's some key factors that went into my decision:
Canon 6D


*Dynamic Range is great
The whole DXO mark of the Nikon D600 having 2 more stops is over-hyped! If you shoot RAW, you have plenty of room to bring back details in the shadows and highlights. If you know how to use Photoshop and camera RAW, this is not a big factor.

*Great High ISO performance
Images hold up great in low light situations. Handheld Night Scene works great! It shoots 4 bracketed exposures and combines them in-camera. The result is a very well exposed jpeg image. Main limitation of this that it saves a jpeg image only. I shoot mainly RAW. A workaround I end up doing is shooting my usual RAW images and then switch to Handheld Night Scene to get a nice jpeg. Then I have the best of both worlds.

*Very accurate color rendition.
What you see in real life is what you get from the photos.

*Ergonomics are great
I have fairly small hands and the camera fits like a glove. It feels solid and well balanced.

*The GPS and Wi-fi are amazing!
Here's where Canon really stepped up their game. The directions aren't the clearest on how to set it up, but I figured it out through some trial and error.
GPS: It takes about 1-2 minutes to locate and lock on a satellite signal. Every time you shoot, the global coordinates of the camera are embedded into the RAW or jpeg file. So after a days work, I can see where each image was taken. The Canon 6D comes with a map utility software to view this. Better yet, if you have Adobe Lightroom(highly recommended), the program has a dedicated "Map" tab. It uses Google maps, so you can navigate and zoom to each location you shot. Now I never have to name my files with long descriptions like "DTLA_CornerOfSpringSt&6thSt_Noon_3-14-2013.jpeg" just so I can remember where I was.
Wi-Fi: Works great! Essentially, the Canon 6D acts like a wireless router. Once you activate it, you can search for the camera on your smart phone. Make sure you install the free EOS Utility app for your phone. Once you connect, your smart phone acts like a live viewfinder and remote control, with the ability to adjust basic settings. ie, shutter speed, iso, focusing points.

*Nice viewfinder
Very sharp and bright in reference to what I'm actually seeing. The whole 97% vs 100% viewfinder coverage is not a factor at all. So what if i don't see 3% of the image through the viewfinder. In the end, that just means you get an extra 3% of the image you didn't see after you view it on your computer. I end up cropping a lot in Photoshop anyhow.

*Very convenient and smart button layouts.
I can easily change my iso speed and aperture settings without any thinking. Nice integration of the rear dial to change apertures and make quick adjustments on the fly.

*Weather sealed
Canon finally decided to address their fogging issue that plagued the previous 5D ii. Now I have some assurance that the camera can handle some adverse weather conditions.

*Very silent shutter sound
A nice addition when shooting with a tour or in a cathedral/sacred place.

*No flash pop up. The high ISO performance makes up for this though.
*20 megapixels vs the 24 megapixels on the D600. Not a big difference, but a small detail nonetheless
*1 card slot
Originally this bothered me. But then I thought, why can't I just carry a tiny SD card in my pocket as a backup.
*11 auto focus points
Canon dropped the ball on this one. But I do not shoot sports and weddings, so it does not affect my shooting experience. I've been content with the 11 it provides, plenty for me to adjust my focus areas.
*12 stops dynamic range vs 14 stops on the D600. If you shoot RAW, this is not a deal breaker
*Some special modes, ie Scene Handheld and HDR, can only be saved as jpeg.

Nikon D600
*Slightly better Dynamic Range than the Canon 6D
I spent a long time testing out the RAW images but did not see a significant advantage. If you know how to bracket exposures, then both cameras are on par.

*Great ergonomics.
I really enjoyed holding the D600, much better than the Nikon D800 in my opinion. The thumb rest was more pronounced on the D600. So it felt more secure in my hands.

*Nice color rendition
*39 focus points
If I was shooting sports and weddings, this would be a better addition than the Canon 6D. Then again if I was shooting these types of subjects, I would upgrade to the Nikon D800 or Canon 5D iii.
*Dual card slots
*Weather sealed

*Viewfinder is a bit small and 1-2 stops dark.
I rarely use the live view when shooting. So I rely on the viewfinder to compose my subject matter. I'm not sure why Nikon decided to darken it, it really makes shooting in low light situations harder to see. The Canon 6D, 5D iii and the Nikon D800 does not have this problem.
*The dreaded dust/oil problem is not gonna go away for a while. Google it and feel the frustration of Niko That's what you get for trying to save production costs by manufacturing it in Thailand. It should be made in Japan or the USA !! To make matters worse, Nikon denied the dust issue for months.
*Button layout needs to be simplified and thought out better
The dual ring knob at the top is a bit of pain to use. The iso button is a tiny button located in a the bottom left, not the best location since you have to fiddle around to look for it. The better Nikon models made sure the iso button is easily accessible using your shooting hand.
*Based off of user reviews on Amazon, the extra wi-fi attachment you can purchase seems buggy.
*HDR mode only saves jpegs.
Like the Canon 6D, you cannot save out RAW image using special modes.
*Shutter is significantly louder than the Canon 6D

In the end, I stuck with my instincts and went with the Canon 6D. Despite some features that it lacked, ie dual card slots, I felt this was the best camera for my profession. Especially with the GPS and high ISO noise performance.

I think it's really up to you to decide what you mainly use this camera for and then draw up a list of Pros and Cons. Make sure you visit your local camera shop to test it out for yourself. Good luck and enjoy shooting with which ever camera you decide to purchase!!
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68 of 81 people found the following review helpful
on August 14, 2013
Based on my 9 month experience with canon 6d and canon service people, here is my rating on canon 6d:
Image quality: *****
Camera reliability:*** (initially was * based on my exprience with my old 6d. The refurbished replacement so far is *****. Average of the two ***).
Focusing: ***

I bought this camera on December 4th, 2012. I really enjoyed it until May 2013 when I used it at Magee Marsh OH to shoot a great horned owl. The camera went dead completely just before I could get a good shot of the bird. The battery was almost full before it went dead. I tried re-inserting the battery and restarting the camera. It didn't work. After 2hours driving home, it suddenly worked again. I hoped it was just a random glitch and would not happen again. So I didn't sent it back for repair. However, the same problem happened a few more times in June. I didn't return it because I really need a good camera to shoot various events. Starting in July, it basically died on me every time when I went outside for more than 2 hours (maybe 2 or 3 hundreds shots). I made sure it's not a battery problem by inserting fully charged canon batteries after the problem happened. It usually came back to life after 2 or 3 hours rest. It became so unreliable so that I had to send it to NJ canon service center for repair on July 5th. One week later, I got it back. The first time I used it, it became dead after 3 hours. So I had to send it back to NJ service center the 2nd time for the same problem. They replaced "power assembly" this time. I thought the problem should be gone. To my disappointment/surprise, when I used it for 3 hours/297shots, the camera was dead again! I had to send it back the 3rd time last Friday(8/2) for the same problem. I had to call basically everyday to get status of the problem/resolution. Just one hour ago, I was told by Canon PR person on the phone that they found the problem it was a faulty CMOS. They replaced it and will mail me back the 6D.
Three "repairs" in one month for the same problem! Countless lost opportunities/wasted time on the phone/wasted gas to/from photo destinations! I am not even sure this third "repair" will fix the problem! I now totally lost confidence in my 6D.
I suspect that the problem is NOT an isolated case. I saw at least two people had the same 6d problem as mine on canonrumor forum. One of guys had 6d repaired three times including replacing "base plate" (I don't know what that is). He still had the problem after 3 repairs. So Canon gave him a new retail box. I asked Canon to give me a replacement 6D. They refused. I thought that they at least should treat customer equally and do the same thing for me.
In short, 6D's quality is not reliable. It may die after 3-4 hours heavy use (maybe 300+ pics) in 80F degree temperature. I suspect that more 6D having the same problem. It is just not discovered by most users because it is only exposed after heavy use in relatively high temperature. (I used it + canon 100-400mm lens/Al Servo AF mode for birding).
If you do have a 6D, test it heavily before your 1 year warranty expires. It may expose this problem you may otherwise won't be able to discover.

I will get my camera back after 3rd repair in the next few days. I'll report back the outcome again.

9/6/2013: I received a replacement 6d after sending it back 4th time for a SD card slot problem. I change the 6d rating from * to **. I will test out the replacement 6d and adjust rating based on my experience with the replacement and the original one. Please don't criticize me for giving 6d such a low rate. I can only rate things based on the cameras I used. I don't have canon 6d statistics. I am pretty sure the overall 6d rating should be higher than mine. I hope that everything will be fine and I will enjoy 6d again.

10/8/2013: Just came back from a 3 1/2 week photo trip. The replacement refurbished 6d was fully tested under tough weather conditions. It performed pretty well. I changed my rating of 6d to *** based on my experience with the initial 6d and the replacement.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on September 20, 2014
I came from a Canon Rebel T3 and did a tremendous amount of research among the Canon lineup before deciding on this camera body as an upgrade. Having used it over the past two years, on trips to Iceland and Peru, I can say this is the camera to get for the advanced-amateur/hobbyist. In the price range of the 6D is the 7D and 60Ds on the less expensive end, and the 5D Mark II on the more expensive end. The 5D Mark III is well outside the comparable price range.

The 7D (and 7D Mark II) advantage over the 6D is in frames per second. I suppose for certain situations (sports, birding), an extra few shots per second may help increase the likelihood that you capture "the moment" but honestly, the 4-6 fps of the 6D is plenty. Of the many advantages of the 6D, the fact that you get a full frame sensor instead of a crop sensor is gigantic in terms of image quality. The ISO capabilities of the 6D are incredible. Turning up the ISO allows for very reasonable indoor shooting and picture quality, even at the highest ISOs cropped in, is still reasonable. The full frame sensor is so much better for landscapes and any wide angle shot you would want.

I am extremely pleased with the battery life of the 6D as well. I can shoot all day without needing to switch the battery and have taken numerous consecutive shots with extra long exposures via a 10 stop neutral density filter without running out of battery. The camera is sturdy, well built and rugged. My only gripe (and it is an extremely small one!) is that the on/off power switch is on the left side of the camera and not accessible single handed from the right.

Overall, I believe this camera is an excellent value and a great camera body for an advanced amateur or anyone looking to enter the full frame sensor world. Just bear in mind, you will lose access to all Canon EF-S lenses that you may have previously used (anything with a white square on the lens connection).

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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on March 24, 2013
I bought my 7D shortly after it came out, and I loved it. It is a fantastic camera and was instrumental in teaching me so much about photography (and DSLR videography).

I'd been hankering after a full frame for quite some time, but couldn't justify the expenditure, until the 6D was announced.

I bought it (got it secondhand here on Amazon, so I got a great deal - it arrived in 'as new' condition from someone who had a review model), and I couldn't be happier with it.

I read up extensively before buying so I was aware of the fact that it doesn't shoot as many frames per sec as the 7D, and that the autofocus might not be quite as good, but that didn't put me off. And since buying I've barely noticed any diff in the two.

But the difference in picture quality is amazing. In the first week after getting it I had five photos on Flickr's Explore page! Outstanding.

I love the 6D.

If you want to see an in-depth review of the 6D, I can recommend Ken Rockwell's one [...] - I have no affiliation to Ken, but his review certainly helped me to decide to get this camera.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on January 4, 2013
I have owned a T3i, 60D, 7D and a 5Dmkii and I have to say that this 6D is truly amazing! I am charging the battery right now, but I had to pop it in for a few test shots just to see how it works in low light situations. I am in a room with only one tiny lamp on and I have been able to catch focus with all 11 focus points and the images are sharp. I will note that the center point does find focus the fastest and in very LITTLE light!

I will write more as I explore it, but right now its already better in low light than the 5dmkii! I was debating between a 7D, 5dmkii or another 6D for a backup..... after tonight I am leaning very much towards a 2nd 6D as a backup! But i do like the extra reach that the 7D would provide and the insane ruggedness of it.

The only issue is that I have 3 CF cards that wouldn't be used. But i do have 2x 32GB SD cards and 1x 16GB SD card that will work for the time being. I liked the fast focusing of the 7D but in all honesty I wasn't all that impressed with its low lighting quality....which was better on the 5dmkii. The fact that the 6D can go to even higher ISO's with little noise is going to come in very handy.

The kit lens is great as well... with the IS, i can hand hold in almost no light with no flash.

My main items are portraits, walk around and landscape.

in my bag I have a 6D, (6D, 7D or 5Dmkii as a backup), 17-40L F4, 24-105L F4 IS, 50 F1.4, 85 F1.8, and 70-200L F4 IS, 2x 430exii speedlights

::EDIT 1/6/2013::

I have played around with the wifi and the EOS ap on my iPhone... Pure genius! I can view all the pics on my camera right on my phone and i can control the camera by just my phone from across the house.

It has also be decided that as soon as Amazon gets the Body only camera in we will be buying another 6D as our backup.

::EDIT 1/22/2013::

I am now hesitant about a 2nd back up 6D as the non-canon brand batteries issues is a pretty big deal. $60 for a single battery where $24.99 could get you two Wasabi batteries AND a charger. putting the wasabi battery in my 6D effective dumbed it down... the battery i mean. it can no long display a battery charge level on my 7D nor in the charger. Hopefully the 5dmkiii doesnt have this issue!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
I also own a 5D MK II and 60D and the 6D is a near marriage of the two older cameras: full frame innards of the 5D MKII coupled with the petite form factor and controls of the 60D. Toss in Wi-Fi, GPS, AF tweaks, enhanced high ISO, and that's the 6D in a nutshell.

CONSTRUCTION: The 6D is a handsome camera with top notch fit and finish: tough magnesium body shell, engineering grade plastic top panel and matte black paint. I suspect the plastic panel was used to enhance Wi-Fi/GPS reception. Canon claims the 6D is weather resistant to the same level as the 7D and 1N and, indeed, mist and light rain don't faze it but I'd protect it in a downpour. The textured rubber grip is comfortable for my medium sized hands and feels secure. It's noticeably smaller and lighter than a 5D MKII and the same size and weight as the 60D.

The 6D is very quiet. My 5D MKII and 70D thunder next to it. However, if quiet isn't enough, silent drive mode can fade operation to pianissimo, making it idea for stage and intimate ceremonies.

The 3.0" 1,040,000 dot LCD is vivid and clear and spanks my 5D MKII in terms of clarity. It appears to the same LCD as the 60D but without the articulating ability.

CONTROLS: The Spartan control interface was inherited from the 60D but buttons and wheels feel a little more solid and precise. Like the 60D, there's no joystick, and dedicated flash exposure compensation (FEC) and white balance buttons are MIA. FEC is set on the LCD. I prefer a dedicated FEC button so flash compensation may be applied while looking through the viewfinder. One control was inherited from the 7D: a button/switch on the upper right for toggling between LiveView and video.

AUTOFOCUS: The diamond shaped AF-array has similar coverage as the 5D MKII, but a but a total of 11 points rather than 9. The center-cross AF point has been significantly enhanced and is amazingly sensitive and sure-footed in low light, working all the way down to EV -3. It can snag focus in closets and caves! The 10 single axis outer points are not as sensitive but are better than those of the 5D MKII. All in all, a big step up from 5D MKII AF.

Contrast AF used in LiveView/Video is pokey compared to the 70D or SL1, but a level faster and more sure-footed than contrast AF on the 60D or 7D, and a couple levels better than the 5D MKII. If you're not in a hurry, it's very accurate and fine for macro and product shots.

IMAGE QUALITY: RAW image output very similar t the 5D MKII from ISO 100 to 1600, i.e., great! The 6D comes into its own at high ISO, and coupled with ultra sensitive AF, is an amazing low light camera. By ISO 3200 the 6D pulls away from the 5D MKII and is shockingly good at ISO 12800 with only moderate noise reduction. Beyond ISO 12800 is emergency use for me, but if I need to shoot at ISO 102400 the center AF point is up to the task. I'm not an avid "shadow lifter" but the 6D is amazingly clean--less patterned artifacts--and you can easily bump up shadows another stop over the 5D MKII when needed.

WI-FI: WI-FI via the EOS Remote app can be used to set exposure, select AF points, fire the shutter., etc. Like the wired EOS remote, you can use LiveView or save images on your iPhone, iPad or Droid. Wi-Fi drains the battery fast, so have spares ready. My only complaint is Wi-Fi is needlessly complicated to set up.

GPS setup is easy: two or three menu selections, point the pentaprism at the sky and you're done. However, acquiring a GPS signal in downtown Honolulu was impossible due to tall buildings and nearby mountains. I was able to catch the signal here and there on Oahu but found GPS spotty. I had hoped GPS would bring clarity to my befuddling vacation images but I'll reserve final judgement until I get travel time in North America during the summer. For now, I disabled GPS since it shortens battery life.

VIEWFINDER: The quality of the optical viewfinder is astounding. On paper the specs of 97% coverage and .71x magnification are less impressive than the 5D MKII/III. However, viewfinder clarity is a level above my 5D MK II, 60D or 7D. Even with a slowish F4 zoom the focusing screen is bright, grainless, smooth and vivid. It's a real pleasure to shoot with.

FLASH: Although the 6D is a prosumer camera aimed at serious hobbyists, it lacks a popup flash. My 430EX II Speedlite works great but I miss having a popup for fill flash and E-TTL trigger use. If you're looking for a small Speedlite, consider the Canon 270EX II Speedlite Flash for Canon SLR Cameras (Black): it fits in a pocket, can bounce and is about twice as powerful as a popup.

LAST BLURB: Canon's blend of features from multiple cameras make the 6D the a highly evolved and refined camera. Tried and true works for me: menus, features and controls were very familiar. I barely needed to crack the manual. I also love the small form factor combined with full frame format. It's easy on the shoulder, able to capture clean and vivid images in almost any light and, for me, the ideal travel DSLR.
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36 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2012
24 January 2013 - Update.

I downloaded the Wi-Fi app into my IOS devices. It works great. I can put my 6D near ground level and pointing up, preview the composition and take the shot. My wife can review pictures taken before I load them up into my laptop. The only downside to this app is that it drains the battery of my IOS devices quicker than I wish.

Original review:

Photography is my hobby. I take pictures on weekends, vacation, or business travels for my company. Also, I like to geo-tag my pictures as a way to remind me where the photos were taken. So for me, this camera is great.

People's complaints about its 20 MP (vs. 24 MP of some other brand) sound misplaced to me. The consequence of this low pixel count is the low pixel density, which resulted in excellent noise performance in low light / high ISO of the 6D. Since many pictures I took and will take are during business travel for my employer, they are taken mostly at or after sunset, or indoors. This very low-noise at high ISO performance of the 6D is a very big positive for me.

The 6D has 11 AF points (vs. some very high count of some other brand). More than enough for hobbyist like me.

The lack of a built-in flash is at worst -1/2 star, in my view. I rarely used the pop-up flash since this kind of flash is typically weak. Canon's decision to forgo the built-in flash to make room for the Wi-Fi and GPS circuitry is commendable. Since the performance of the 6D in low-light / high ISO is so good, my need for a pop flash is greatly reduced; I like pictures with a more natural look. Besides, I carry an external flash anyway. As for the sync speed of the flash (1/180 vs 1/200), I struggle to imagine a case that this small difference would affect me.

Talking about Wi-Fi. The feature is another big plus, in my opinion. my smartphone or my tablet will act as a cable release. And I can review my pictures on my tablet soon afterward, a much better proposition than viewing them on the display on the back of the camera, without having to wait for a laptop or desktop.

The lack of 2nd card slot may be a deficiency of the 6D vs. its competitors. But so far, all my cameras have only one card slot; So I don't find this "deficiency" a big deal.

The 97% viewfinder of the 6D (vs. ~100% of other full-frame cameras) is a more significant issue. On rare occasions, I do end up with additional elements at the fringes / edges of my pictures than I anticipated since they didn't show up in my viewfinder. Again, these occurrences are few and far in between.

A very nice surprise is the very low noise the mirror of the 6D makes as it flips up. And I didn't even put it in silent mode. Will try this mode (and others) as soon as I can. After all, I only have this camera for 3 days.

I took a few pictures of my wife inside our home, under incandescent lights, with ISO set to 25600, and with GPS on. The results were great. The GPS was surprisingly accurate. Sorry guys, I won't post these pictures up.

In conclusion, I find the pluses of the 6D far outweigh the perceived deficiencies. I recommend this camera.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on March 12, 2013
The Canon 6D is one of the best bodies I've ever used, and that's saying something.

I am a staff photographer at The News Journal in Wilmington, Delaware, and upon joining the staff a few months ago, asked the photo director to purchase a 6D for my kit. I've previously used the original 5D, 5DmkII, 5DmkIII, 60D, 7D, 1DmkIIN, 1DmkIII and the EOS M, while working part-time for a Canon dealer in Wyoming as a side job to my position on the staff of the Casper Star-Tribune, where I worked full time.

I've also used Nikon gear when I work for a paper in Indiana. There I was outfitted with two Nikon D3s's.

The Canon 6D features fantastic video, I'd say comparable to the 60D or even the 5DmkII, depending on the lighting conditions. It also boasts a faster frame rate than the 5DmkII, which makes it much easier to use when shooting sports. The ISO range is superb. Images shot at 10,000 ISO, in relatively low light conditions at many of the high school gyms I've shot at recently, look crisp. Much better than anything I've seen from bodies older than the 5DmkIII. And of course, the full frame sensor is a great plus for this body's price point.

If you're a journalist or photojournalist, you understand that getting images in as quickly as possible at the highest quality possible can make or a break a story at times. Routinely at spot or breaking news scenes we've had to rely on our iPhones to get any sort of photo transmitted quickly. Hands down the best feature of this camera is the built in wifi connectivity with the Canon iPhone app. I can take a photo at a scene, view images on my card on my phone (or even remotely control the camera with my phone, great for mounted shots in basketball) and pull the image off and transmit something of infinitely higher quality than my iPhone can produce in a matter of a minute.

The only drawbacks this body has is the lacking number of autofocus points compared to other bodies in it's capability range, and it's limited shutter speed of 1/4000. That hasn't effected me yet, as usually I can just drop the ISO lower and compensate, but it is a curious limit. I've also noticed, when trying to shoot basketball in poorly lit gyms (i.e. at a high ISO and under fluorescent lighting) the video the 6D produces has a purple banding to it. I sent my body to Canon thinking it was an issue and they said they simply "adjusted the imagining array" and that would alleviate the issue. I'm still noticing it, but again, only at very high ISO and under fluorescent light.

For the cost, this is definitely a body I would recommend to any photographer looking for high quality stills, and strong video.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on February 28, 2013
my update did not post*********

I realize now that there is no FEC button on the 6d which is going to be an issue for me because I almost always use a spot metering preflash (star button) over people's face to nail correct exposures using bounce flash, and use the FEC button with the rear wheel to adjust according to skin tones (+1 for white people, -1 for dark skin, etc). While I've been able to make the "set" button on the 6d a FEC button, the FEC amount still shows up on the LCD screen instead of in the viewfinder, so you'll have to take your face away from the camera for a second. I'm sure I can work with this annoyance, but I'm pretty disappointed that canon took this button away from a camera that costs almost $2,000 (while the 7d has it and costs less). I guess they have to make you wish it was a 5d mark iii. Luckily, I still have my 5d ii so I'll probably end up using that more often when I'm using flash. Or maybe it won't be as bad as it seems it's going to be, and everything will be alright. I just wanted to make it apparent that this button is missing, and no matter what you do, you have to change the FEC on the LCD screen, not in the viewfinder. I'm leaving a 5 star rating because I'm still happy with the camera; the image quality is superb.


I will be updating this review over time. I shoot mostly weddings and I have been using two canon 5d mark ii bodies, and just sold one to get this 6d. I have kept the other one, however. I will start by stating the obvious:

The canon 5d mark ii is a great camera, even 4 years after it became available. In fact, it was so good when it came out that it still holds up to many of the brand new camera bodies that are out now, in terms of its sensor.

I decided to buy this 6d to replace one of the 5d ii's I have after a friend sent me an ISO 6400 raw. At first it didn't seem any better, but it is, a little bit. In fact, it's just enough better than 6400 on the 5d mark ii for me to consider using it without hesitation. I've shot at 6400 with the 5d ii many times at weddings in situations where I didn't have a choice, and while it worked, the photos had to be heavily noise reduced and I only provided them at 2 megapixels to my clients. At 6400 on the 5d ii, there is noticeable color loss and dynamic range loss. You must get the exposure right because you cannot manipulate the file much without getting some intense noise and banding. The 6d file at 6400, however, gives you some room to play. You can correct exposures much more without ruining the photo, it retains better colors, and the noise is just a hair better- that is, in a scene with mostly black. In a brightly lit scene, the 6d's noise is substantially better, about one stop, maybe a little less.

In video mode, it's a different story. Iso 12800 on the 6d in video looks like 3200 on the 5d ii, no kidding. I don't know how they did this but it's pretty amazing. I don't do much video work though.

The 5d mark ii has a preferable button layout, which has been retained in the 5d iii. The 6d's layout are more rebel like and obnoxious, but I'll get used to it. I miss the joystick, as the directional pad on the 6d requires you to shift your hand, and it's pretty mushy.

The 1/4000 shutter speed on the 6d would have been a deal breaker to me if I did not own a 5d ii as well, because using wide aperture primes during the day at 1/4000, is just not going to happen. At f1.4, I am often in 1/8000 territory, and some times I have to drop to iso 50 on top of that if using f1.2. the 1/200 strobe sync on the 5d ii is better than the 1/180 on the 6d, as well, and yes it matters.

Build quality wise, there is no comparison. The 5d ii wins hands down. The 6d feels identical to a 60d, in my opinion. I'm careful with my gear so this is not a problem.

Now to the AF system: I thought there would be no real improvement here, as it's the same crappy focus diamond canon loves to give to us unless we spend over 3k. Well, I was wrong, it's better, much better. I'm used to having to use the center point all the time and the center point on the 6d (rated tofocus at -3 EV vs -0.5 EV on the mark ii) is amazing. A few test shots outside in the city at night revealed perfect focus every time in almost total darkness. This will definitely be helpful in shooting weddings, since most of them are in caves.

some other things to note; the 6d has silent shooting modes while the 5d mark ii can only do them in live view mode. Unfortunately the 5dii sounds like a gunshot during a quiet wedding ceremony, so the 6d will for sure be my main body during ceremonies. It's whisper quiet with silent shooting enabled.

Last, the overall sharpness is better on the 6d, but it's not bad on the 5d ii at all. This is to be expected from a sensor that's in a brand new body vs one that's 4 years old. The 6d also does in camera lens correction which is very, very nice.

So is it worth the extra price for the 6d over the 5d ii if you're looking for a first time full frame? Or is it worth switching from a 5d ii like I did?

Maybe. It depends on what you shoot. If you shoot video, and do so in the dark often, absolutely. The 6d video noise is superior, by about two full stops, but only in the higher ISO range. Lower ISO is identical.

If you do mostly studio work and outdoor portraiture: No. Save yourself 500 dollars or so and buy a used 5d mark ii. That money is best used elsewhere. 5d ii has better shutter durability and build quality, which will be more important to you. Lower ISO's look exactly the same as well.

If you shoot weddings: Yes. The 6d does a better job in low light, and medium light shooting without flash. ISO 3200 is usable on the 5d ii, and 6400 if you really have to. But I'd go to 6400 and not even worry about it wiht the 6d. The -3 EV center point will be very helpful as well, though not as much as the 5d mark iii's autofocus system that frees you from ever having to focus and recompose again.

In summary: if most of your shooting is ISO 3200 and below - save some money and pick up a used 5d mark ii. Canon just had refurbs on sale for $1400. I sold mine, with a canon battery grip, for $1400. You get more for your money. If you really need the slightly better low light performance, get the 6d.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2014
I wanted to jump to FF from crop. Researched, researched, debated and debated over and over between the Nikon D610 vs. Canon 6D for weeks! I'm coming from shooting a Nikon and have been a Nikon fan for many years from the F3. This is for those in similar situations where they just need one simple review to help them decide between the D610 or 6D before they go slightly crazy as I did.On magazines and online reviews, the D610 specs just looked so much better than 6D, esp. the AF system 11 vs. 39 pts. But, if you are looking to buy a camera at this level, you probably have done your own research and there are numerous reviews as to specs out there, so let's leave the specs out of this review.


Feel: the feel of the camera is fantastic! It is solid and well built. I held the D610, which is also solid, but I really liked the feel and grip of the 6D. Solid. Plus, all the function buttons are located on the right side which makes it easier to shoot with only one hand. Made in Japan reassures that its a quality product (not that Nikon isn't).

Looks: I always thought and still believe that Nikon has that sexy look to it even from the F3 vs. F1 standpoint. Canon on the other hand, less sexy IMHO. But, I'm actually liking the simplistic design of the Canon in my hand esp. so because of the pro-level feel. Nice.

Day Pics: On my 1st run with the 6D, I compared the photos vs. my son's D90 on the camera's LCD screen. It was a very sunny day at the Getty Center. Anything you shoot there on a sunny day produces great images. I thought to myself, "well I guess it looks a little better" than the D90. But at home, the 6D's pictures are sharper and more defined (try zooming to test). The color was also excellent! If you are ready to move up to FF, this is a great camera that produces excellent images.

Night Pics: Ok, so one of the main reasons I chose the 6D is its low-light capability. This is where the camera really shines. The same day my son and I shot at Santa Monica at night. We snapped away and compared the photos. Even on the LCD screen, the 6D images were so much better at the same ISO. Colors were bright and natural. D90 less so. Caveat, the D90 is not a D610 and is unable to compete with a newer pro-level FF camera and I am not here to compare a D90 to the 6D, but was compared only to share my experiences with the 6D. At home, OMG - the nights were so awesome on the 6D! All the reviewers are right in that 6D rocks for night shooting. I am sold.

WIFI/GPS: Ok, at first I thought why?? I rather have a mag-alloy top or a flash in the same spot. But, the WIFI is pretty cool and convenient. I downloaded an app on my phone and instantly messaged a photo to my wife's phone in a few short minutes. This will be awesome to instantly transfer to my Flickr page. As to the GPS, I turned it off to save battery - I don't need it.

Why I chose 6D over D610: Ok, I was sitting around comparing reviews after reviews, images after images and debating camera vs. value, etc etc. Basically, I realized that I was wasting time by not being out and about taking pictures. I also was getting a headache. So, I decide to pull the trigger on the 6D based on my own Ultimate Decision Maker for Buying below:


1) Am I a pro? YES -> buy/rent what you need - I would go for 1DX
2) Can I spend $3500 on a camera body without flinching? YES -> 5D mk3 / NO -> goto #5
3) Can I spend $3500 on a camera body without flinching but prefer studio shooting? YES -> D800 / NO -> 5D mk3
4) (optional) Should I consider mirror-less? IMHO "image" of a profession still matters (lawyers should wear suits at court with his/her client; and photographers should bring bigger cameras at the shoot than his/her clients). Smaller the camera, less pro you look. Of course, this is up to the buyer - you pick. I prefer bigger cameras and lens.

For anyone who really wants a FF camera but will flinch uncomfortably at the though of spending $3500 on a camera body:
5) Do I shoot a lot at night or low-light conditions? YES -> 6D / No -> D610
6) Do I shoot a lot of sports? YES -> D610 / No -> 6D
7) Do I plan to buy more specialized lens in the future (ultra wide or ultra zoom), but I'm on a budget? YES -> 6D / No -> D610 (Nikon lens tend to be more expensive for those types of lens). Again, if you're rich or a pro, buy whatever suits your fancy.
8) Do I have a lot of money invested in one brand of lens (more than 3)? YES -> stick with that brand / NO -> 6D
9) I found an extra $1500 or so lying around the house. Then go buy yourself a 5D mk3.All the other specs and stuff: well that's really up to the individual buyer. I really think that you can't go wrong with either a 6D or a D610; it really comes down to sports vs. low-light shooting preferences. Don't spend too much time debating which to buy, rather go take more photos instead.I did and I am really happy with the 6D.

Good luck that was fun!
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