Approve the Cookies
This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and our Privacy Policy.
Forums  •   • New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear
Forums  •   • New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear
Register to forums    Log in

FORUMS Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon Digital Cameras 
Thread started 22 Nov 2009 (Sunday) 08:17
Search threadPrev/next
sponsored links (only for non-logged)

Image Quality - 1Ds vs 1DII vs 5D Classic. Advice?

Senior Member
917 posts
Likes: 4
Joined Jun 2007
Location: Sydney, Australia.
Nov 22, 2009 08:17 |  #1

Hey guys and girls, apologies if this has been asked multiple times (as i'm sure it has)...if you have a thread to link me to, please do!

Basically, i'm after information regarding the image quality differences (if any) between the original 1Ds, 1DMkII and 5D classic. I'm not so worried about high-ISO performance, or mega-pixels, and I know everyone will have a different opinion, but i'd like to hear some comparison stories between the different cameras. I won't tell you what I shoot, as that's negligible and will only sway people's opinions and take the thread off-course - I'd just like to know if people have found a large difference in overall image quality, dynamic range, colour and contrast rendition, and anything else you might feel is important, between the three cameras listed?

Any help would be very much appreciated as i'll be purchasing one of the above within the next week.

Thanks in advance!



about to go POSTAL
2,640 posts
Likes: 1
Joined Dec 2006
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Nov 22, 2009 08:22 |  #2

Go with the original 5D :)

Fell in love with photos.. made lots of money.. fell out of love with photos.. took a long break.. trying to find my love again.

Tupperware Party Sheep
2,432 posts
Joined Nov 2007
Location: Sydney
Nov 22, 2009 08:33 |  #3

Interesting to watch some opinions come in here..

Knowing what you shoot Tristan, I would stick with a fullframe body.

1N - 5D2 - 15 2.8 - 17-40L- 24LII - 50L - 85 1.8 - 70-200 2.8
O-MD - 20 1.7 - 50 1.8 - 135 3.5 (external link) - facebook fanpage (external link) - twitter (external link) - 500px (external link)

4,488 posts
Likes: 141
Joined Dec 2007
Location: Singapore
Nov 22, 2009 08:42 |  #4

If you're like me and you've borrowed / rented a 1 series to shoot before, you'd definitely want another 1 series next ;)

Subscribing to see what everyone says.

Zexun | Flickr (external link) | YouTube (external link) |

175 posts
Joined Mar 2008
Nov 22, 2009 09:01 |  #5

Have owned both 1Dmk2n and 5D. For overall image quality, dynamic range, colour and contrast rendition 5D is a clear winner

2,374 posts
Likes: 1
Joined Nov 2005
Location: Maryland
Nov 22, 2009 09:25 |  #6

I have a 5D and a 1DsmkII and so far (the 1D is new) I like the images from the 5D better - just smoother. Both will kill the 1dmkII.

FJR1300 rider
5D mkIII and 1D MkIII

16-35L | 24-105L | 70-200L f/2.8IS | 85 f/1.8 / 50 f.1,4

3,702 posts
Gallery: 248 photos
Likes: 1380
Joined Mar 2007
Location: Ottawa, Ont, Canada
Nov 22, 2009 09:33 |  #7

I've owned and shot enough with a 1Ds, 1D2n, & 5D to easily say the 5D is the best of the 3 in actual image output. Since there isn't a noticable difference between images from a 20D, 1D2 or 1D2n I think it's fair to say that the 5D is the best of them from an image quality examination, plus it's got decent high ISO for the era.

A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought.

Senior Member
917 posts
Likes: 4
Joined Jun 2007
Location: Sydney, Australia.
Nov 22, 2009 18:19 as a reply to  @ cicopo's post |  #8

Wow, that's pretty interesting to hear. Thanks for the responses everybody. If anyone has any more input, feel free to say far it sounds like the 5D is the clear winner though.


2,330 posts
Likes: 25
Joined Oct 2007
Location: Salem, OR
Nov 22, 2009 18:34 |  #9

A couple of weeks ago, I shot a high school play. I used my 5D and 1D II at the first dress rehearsal. After reviewing the images, I ended up shooting the whole 2nd rehearsal with only the 5D.

The 5D at ISO 3200 was better than the 1D II at ISO 1600.

Now, in the fall, when I was shooting outdoor sports, I didn't even bother to take the 5D with me. The 1D II was so far ahead on AF performance it wasn't even funny!

- Keith
http://darwinphoto.zen​ (external link)

1,549 posts
Gallery: 8 photos
Likes: 187
Joined Apr 2008
Nov 22, 2009 18:45 as a reply to  @ n1as's post |  #10

I'm going to buck the trend.

After testing the 5D and 1Ds extensively I bought the 1Ds despite its inferior high ISO performance, decrepit screen, useless batteries and piss-poor buffer...

This is of course completely subjective, but I found images more natural and film-like from the 1 series. Colours are a little cooler and less inclined to red. RAW images need very little sharpening thanks to the weak aa filter and look less artificial when magnified to my eye. I can also club seals with it :D

I use it almost exclusively for landscapes and portraits, so speed is not an issue. If it were, I'd have gone for the 5D.

Flickr (external link)
Instagram (external link)

2,637 posts
Likes: 1
Joined Jan 2006
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Nov 22, 2009 19:44 as a reply to  @ Spacemunkie's post |  #11

For a start, I absolutely love the 1Ds MKI and I have NEVER shot with a 5D, so take the rest of this post with a pinch of salt! :D But considering you're not worried about high ISO performance, I would recommend the 1Ds almost immediately.

I think this is a thread that could potentially go on and on forever and there will be no conclusions to be drawn about it. Image quality is very subjective. If you do a search at this forum for a thread titled '1Ds MKI users unite' or something along those lines, it should bring up some sample photos. There's been multiple other threads discussing the 1Ds MKI vs the 5D MKI.

In each of these threads it's virtually a tie. Even if we took the simplistic method of tallying up votes for each camera and choosing the one with the most votes, we could be off the course because for sure, there are heaps more 5D users than 1Ds users. We need to bear in mind that the 1Ds is a number of years older than the 5d and back in its heyday retailed for an absolute fortune, and only the pros or the very rich could have it. Considering it is still frequently compared to the 5D should be at least a hint of positivity about the 1Ds.

The other simplistic method of evaluating these two cameras in a more objective fashion is to visit the DXOMark website. The 5D obviously scores higher than the 1Ds in all regards when you look at the plain 'Overview' screen.

Hence, in an objective measurement, you're better off with the 5D if you want to follow the numbers. Ultimately though, its the subjective qualities of the 1Ds that might win you over. Believe it or not, two co-owners of a rental equipment company in my hometown have offered to buy my 1Ds, citing the 'arty' or 'DIGIC I' color as being attractive. These same guys have access to everything up to a 5D MKII in their stable. Personally I enjoy the appearance of the grain in the 1Ds images. Plastic-smooth is not my thing, and neither do I like the watercolor-like noise blotches I see from some of the newer cameras. I'm afraid to say that you do need to shoot with both to see what you like.

I landed with the 1Ds not by choice actually, but by circumstance because I got it cheap from someone who, by chance, wanted my 1D MKI badly, and just as badly wanted to rid himself of the 1Ds. Interestingly I found him posting a 'Want to Buy' for a 1Ds a year and a half down the track. Think of that what you will. ;) But after sticking with the 1Ds for close to 3 years now, I absolutely love it to bits.

LightWorks Portfolio (external link)
Night Photography Tutorial: Basics & Minutiae (external link)
Gear List (Past & Present)
The Art of Composition IS the Art of Photography.

sponsored links (only for non-logged)

2,928 views & 0 likes for this thread, 10 members have posted to it.
Image Quality - 1Ds vs 1DII vs 5D Classic. Advice?
FORUMS Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon Digital Cameras 
x 1600
y 1600

Jump to forum...   •  Rules   •  Forums   •  New posts   •  RTAT   •  'Best of'   •  Gallery   •  Gear   •  Reviews   •  Member list   •  Polls   •  Image rules   •  Search   •  Password reset   •  Home

Not a member yet?
Register to forums
Registered members may log in to forums and access all the features: full search, image upload, follow forums, own gear list and ratings, likes, more forums, private messaging, thread follow, notifications, own gallery, all settings, view hosted photos, own reviews, see more and do more... and all is free. Don't be a stranger - register now and start posting!

COOKIES DISCLAIMER: This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and to our privacy policy.
Privacy policy and cookie usage info.

POWERED BY AMASS forum software 2.58forum software
version 2.58 /
code and design
by Pekka Saarinen ©

Latest registered member is Ankestyle
1073 guests, 173 members online
Simultaneous users record so far is 15,144, that happened on Nov 22, 2018 Digital Photography Forums is the website for photographers and all who love great photos, camera and post processing techniques, gear talk, discussion and sharing. Professionals, hobbyists, newbies and those who don't even own a camera -- all are welcome regardless of skill, favourite brand, gear, gender or age. Registering and usage is free.