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Kent10D

M8 & EOS-1DIII Comparison

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I have a Canon EOS-1D Mark III in my possession for about a week for a work project, so I thought it would be fun to do some direct comparisons between it and the M8. The Canon uses approximately the same-size sensor (APS-H) as the Leica, so I figured the comparison would be somewhat meaningful.

For this post I really just wanted to show you some 100% crops to see the difference in detail, but first here are small versions of the full scene from both cameras.

 

And since I can't seem to get the enhanced interface thing allowing me to place text between images to work (I followed the instructions, honest), I'll use a couple of posts.

 

Top Image:

EOS-1D III at 1/250, f/8, ISO 400. EF24-70mm f/2.8L USM lens at 24 mm.

(I know it's a zoom, but it's all I have at the moment).

 

Bottom Image

Leica M8 with Zeiss Biogon 25/2.8 at 1/180, f/8, ISO 320.

 

The exposures have been matched in Lightroom so that the highlights are just below clipping in both images, but you can clearly see that these cameras handle the darker end of the tonal scale quite differently. That is the only adjustment, all other settings are the Lightroom (version 1.2) defaults.

 

Crops coming up in next post ...

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OK, now here are a pair of 100% crops of some of the foliage.

The difference in detail is incredible.

 

Top Image: EOS-1D Mark III

Bottom Image: M8

 

For some reason in my preview the images are side-by-side, with the EOS on the left and the M8 on the right. Whatever.

 

I should also mention that the full scenes in the first post were exported from Lightroom at a JPEG quality setting 75, while the crops are exported with a quality setting of 100.

 

Couple more crops in the next post.

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And finally 100% crops, exported from Lightroom at a JPEG quality setting of 100, of the pointy bit in the fountain.

 

EOS on top (or left), and M8 on bottom (or right).

 

Hope some of you find this interesting. I sure did.

I'll have the Canon for a little longer, and plan to do some more "controlled" comparisons if I can find the time.

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Kent, haven't you some example taken with a Leica lens ?

 

I'll see what I can come up with later in the week (or perhaps I should say next week, since it 's already Saturday).

This is something I'm trying to squeeze in between work, and for the comparison I presented here the Zeiss lens was on the M8 so that's what I used.

 

Since the Canon zoom I'm using goes to 70 mm, I'd really like to do a comparison with my 75 'lux at some point.

 

Hopefully I'll get a chance.

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Thanks for taking the time to do this.

 

When I think about, this is not that relevant to me - I have an M8 and Canon's 5D, but I rarely find myself choosing between them, they're different cameras to me. But I always enjoy side-by-side comparisons, no matter how arcane.

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Thanks for taking the time to do this.

 

When I think about, this is not that relevant to me - I have an M8 and Canon's 5D, but I rarely find myself choosing between them, they're different cameras to me. But I always enjoy side-by-side comparisons, no matter how arcane.

 

My pleasure Iron.

 

I had the opportunity so I thought I'd see what what would happen. I found the results quite interesting, and thought some other forum members might too. Not really trying to prove anything one way or the other. As you say, different cameras.

 

But I will say that the Canon does have remarkable high-ISO performance. Very impressive. But it is a brick, and I wouldn't want to have to carry it around all day.

 

Think I'll stick with the M8.

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Thanks Ken but you are beating a dead horse, don't you think. Everyone with a M8 and Leica lenses, or good lenses from another maker, knows that the Leica will out perform any camera/lens combo from another name brand SLR.

 

In my opinion the biggerest difference is the optics. Leica and Zeiss glas can't be topped.

Second comes the mirror slap of all SLR cameras.

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Leica will out perform any camera/lens combo from another name brand SLR.

 

In my opinion the biggerest difference is the optics. Leica and Zeiss glas can't be topped.

 

Not sure about the glass (I have seen very good Zuiko, Pentax, Angenieux, Nikon and Canon, etc lenses), but certainly, Canon's sensor can't be topped at this present time.

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Would be interesting to see comparison with same white balance and exposure at 100 ISO. The sharpness is clearly better on the Leica, but part of clarity/sharpness is the way the camera capture the details in color and light - and that is not easy to judge when the exposure and white balance does not match.

 

But thanks for doing it and for (hopefully) doping more of it.

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Difference is a bit more then I've found in 1Ds and 5D files compared to M8. Could be processing or lens. All things being equal I find the M8 at 1:1 on screen has a slight edge compared to the 5D and my old 1Ds. Looks like a similar difference to the new 1D MKIII.

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Not sure about the glass (I have seen very good Zuiko, Pentax, Angenieux, Nikon and Canon, etc lenses), but certainly, Canon's sensor can't be topped at this present time.

In terms of noise, yes. But not regarding the level of detail...

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Since the Canon zoom I'm using goes to 70 mm, I'd really like to do a comparison with my 75 'lux at some point.

 

That would be really, really interesting !!!

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Thanks Ken but you are beating a dead horse, don't you think. Everyone with a M8 and Leica lenses, or good lenses from another maker, knows that the Leica will out perform any camera/lens combo from another name brand SLR.

 

Not really. I know many of you have 5Ds and 1Ds's and what-have-you in addition to your M8s, and are well aware of the differences, but not everyone has access to that type of equipment all the time. I know I don't. And how often do you hear that "why should I buy an M8" question? Or "the IQ of the M8 is no better than blah blah ...", with no empirical evidence to back it up?

 

What we have here is a comparison, as basic and flawed as it might be, between an approximately $5,000 M8 and an approximately $5,000 EOS-1D Mark III. The former with a $1,000 prime on it and the latter with a $1,300 zoom, which admittedly skews things a bit. Both cameras have sensors of approximately the same size and pixel count. Personally, I was surprised by the results. I expected the M8 to come out ahead, but not by the amount I'm seeing in the files.

 

So no, I don't think I'm flogging a dead horse. I'm hoping the information might be of some use to potential M8 users who don't have the resources to do even simple comparisons like this themselves, and at least of some interest to the more experienced and well-equipped of those among us.

 

I'd really like to see some similar comparisons between the M8 and the 5D, for example, since that's the comparison that is most frequently trotted out in comparative IQ discussion. Unfortunately, I don't have a 5D. Anyone game?

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Of course I know you used the glass that you have right now but, to level things a little, it should have been better to use the same lens on both cameras -

I.e. the current Elmarit-R 90 -with adapter- on the Canon and the Elmarit-M 90 on the M8

( both lenses are practically the same optical design )..

Thanks for your post all the same Kent. You did very well.

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How to compare an average zoom lens to a sharp prime?

And how to compare pictures taken with and without AA filter?

Should sharpening the latter, or sharpening both differently, be considered as mandatory for the comparison to be fair?

AFAIC when i compare D70 to R-D1 for instance i always choose primes of same focal length, aperture & quality as far as possible and i always sharpen both differently to take into account the weak AA filter of the Nikon with the aim of getting the best results out of both cameras.

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Thanks for making the effort here. I'm a long-time M user who had a shortlived dalliance with the 5D and L lenses till the M8 came out, so it was of interest.

 

My experience is as unscientific as others are telling you your test is, but it's this: I used to have to add some sharpening to get the best out of 5D files. I don't need to with M8 RAW files.

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Jeepers, tough crowd.

It is an unscientific comparison (I would'nt even call it a "test"), which is why I spelled out the equipment and PP details so people would know. Or not.

 

There's nothing I can do about the lenses used at this point, and anyway a Canon "L" zoom on a Canon camera is, in my opinion, a fairly representative Canon "system." That's what most people are going to use.

 

But I can do something about the sharpening issue, so here are the foliage crops sharpened to get the best I can out of the image. Disclaimer: to MY eye!

 

* The EOS image on top or to the left was sharpened in Lightroom with an amount setting of 80. That's quite a lot, and the image is already starting to get a bit nasty.

 

* The M8 image on the bottom or to the right was sharpened in Lightroom with an amount setting of 50. It is holding up nicely.

 

The difference is still quite large.

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