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Andrew Reid

Canon 1D X Mark II review part 1 - why superior colour means it's game over for my Sony A7S II

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P1030027.JPG

Canon have made the biggest step forwards with their DSLR technology this year that we've seen since 2008 and the 5D Mark II.

However it isn't the 5D Mark IV that has me excited so much the 1D X Mark II. This is a camera that will see out the next 6 years as the benchmark for others to follow.

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Too expensive for me. 

The GX85 image you put is amazing. Way better than the Sony. Good enough color wise. 

So the GH5 would do it for me if only it had DPAF like the canon.......

it would be a way better tool than the canon actually. 3 times cheaper, articulated screen, 3 times smaller, better spec and 10bit with better codec. 

Just that AF which is crucial and which is going to be DPAF decent at best, and not DPAF at worst

 

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Welcome back Andrew! Great first look, hopefully pt. 2 doesn't get shelved with the new cameras coming. DPAF is so underrated, I just wish we could get it in something that's not a DSLR. The M5 is a joke, I don't count it as a serious video tool. Are you planning a XT2 review and maybe some comparisons with the rest of your arsenal?

Cheers

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The 1DXII paired with the Canon 40mm STM lens is the most fun setup I've ever shot with. Spent three weeks travelling in Europe and everything was shot with that setup (combined with the eoshd chrome profile which I am in love with!). The fact that the lens is so lightweight and small makes it an even bigger powerhouse imo (getting difficult to reach shots etc)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IE-9EiMH_WU
 

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Agree on Color but I find the Spain video very very soft (might be youtube). The contrast and DR is so "Canon", reminds me my first T3i. Not a bad camera but at $6k I would rather keep my 6D/5dmk3 for photo and get an extra GH5 or future Osmo. DJI is really moving like crazy. Canon still has the great DPAF and low light is not that good on M4/3. We can't have it all but with H265 and 10 bits becoming more mainstream I'm not sure where the 1Dx will stand in 2-3 years. Hopefully Sony will put his stuff together.

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42 minutes ago, OliKMIA said:

Not a bad camera but at $6k I would rather keep my 6D/5dmk3 for photo and get an extra GH5 or future Osmo. 

GH5 is not currently available, and you're talking about traveling around with twice as much gear. It all depends on what you're needs are. There's a lot to be said for one hybrid camera that just works, really really well.

You can tell the difference between good color and bad color, even on tiny displays, (mobile phone.) Any of the canon cameras just make work flow easier. 

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The 1DX II is indeed a great camera for stills and video- the best hybrid right now. The C300 II is a superior video camera with almost no RS and the 12-bit 444 along with ARRI color settings is like using a super-light Alexa with amazing AF. The 4K is excellent too and the lack of 4K 60 really hasn't been a big deal. We're currently shooting a ton of footage so the much smaller 1080p files from the C300 II are very helpful. In order to get decent 1080p from the 1DX II we must shoot 4K and downscale/transcode (not a huge deal but still extra work in post).

For low light and longer events, the A7S II is still currently unmatched. If using a Canon camera to capture reference color, the A7S II when using Slog2 and SGamut3.cine color, exposing +2 over, careful manual WB, nice skin tones are possible:

Now that I've used these cameras for a while, even better color is possible with a little post. Straight out of camera Canon still leads with color. Sony has been catching up- the A7S II is pretty good with a little post work, and even the GH4 is still a useful tool. The A7S III and GH5 will likely have better color- AF still has a way to go though Sony could surprise us with something very good (based on the A7R II AF).

Indeed the 1DX II is a superior 5D3 replacement vs. the 5D4 if one also shoots video.

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Totally agree with your review if you talk with the professional photographer hat put on.

For an enthusiast like me the article has no point. I love tweaking my A7s footage and photos, once you practice you can get good results in no time and with a better DR than Canon's.

OT: i seriously dont get whats the deal with this grey-is-the-new-black look.

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2 hours ago, BenEricson said:

GH5 is not currently available, and you're talking about traveling around with twice as much gear. It all depends on what you're needs are. There's a lot to be said for one hybrid camera that just works, really really well.

You can tell the difference between good color and bad color, even on tiny displays, (mobile phone.) Any of the canon cameras just make work flow easier. 

Of course, no religious believe here. There is no perfect camera. Good that Andrew likes his 1dxII. As for the workflow I'm not sure about the massive MJPEG.

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I just spent a week with a GX85 and some nice primes attached at the hip.  At the end of the trip, I thought, I should probably sell my 80D, even though I just upgraded to the 80D with STM lenses.  I just didn't think I'll be using it anymore after having such a grand time with the GX85.  After taking just 2 photos with the Canon, I concluded very quickly that I should still keep it.  The color is too good to completely abandon.  Panasonic, although it's always improving, I still find issues where the skin is either too flat or too orange.  Usually the problem is due to incorrect white balance.  And even shooting photos in RAW it's a complicated post process, and it'll never be 100% as good as Canon.

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While it's true the 1D X II is ahead in several areas, such as PDAF. By the time its successor comes out, which will be a few years, I have no doubt Sony and Panasonic would have matched or surpassed in these areas. Canon still has its Canon colors, but I have grown to like the colors in other brands. I definitely prefer the GH4 and A7S II colors, both with custom profiles, in good natural light. Canon is more pleasant in dim artificial light, but I can tweak the other two to be pretty close.

So I won't be going back to Canon just yet, but it's good to see they still have some strong points.

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20 minutes ago, VanWeddings said:

I definitely prefer the GH4 and A7S II colors, both with custom profiles, in good natural light.

Good color is subjective, but the Canon seems like it gives the most solid base. You could get that Sony desaturated look if you wanted. GH4 seems like an odd duck, color seems good enough but have never heard anyone say they prefer it to the Canon.

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