The Canon 6D is the weakest full frame DSLR on paper, but having used it for a while now, I can safely say that that 6D is far from being a weak DSLR. In fact, it's the bast DSLR I've used so far.
*This is strictly a review for the photography side of the camera. I will follow up with a video review in the future*
The Canon 6D is over a year old as of writing this post, but I decided to pick it up anyway. Moving forward, I'm hoping to do a lot more lens reviews, and the 6D was the perfect balance between features and price. I still had to dive into my savings for this purchase, but I'm hoping it pays off.
But enough about the way - lets talk about the Canon 6D and how it performs.
Size and Build Quality
One of the biggest factors for my buying the Canon 6D over the 5D Mark III is the size of the camera. The 6D is sort of a hybrid between the shape of the older 5D Mark II and the 60D. The 5D series always felt a little bit too large in my hands, so the size of the 6D was perfect.
In terms of weight, the Canon 6D is, as of writing this post, the lightest full frame DSLR out in the market today. Canon was able to achieve this by using a polycarbonate plastic top rather than one built out of magnesium alloy. The functional purpose of this was it allow the Wi-fi signal to be albeit o penetrate the casing. The lighter weight is a welcomed consequence.
Despite the plastic top, the Canon 6D feels more solid than ever. The plastic parts feel like just like the metal parts, and the camera is still weather sealed.
With a brand new 20 megapixel sensor and a Digic 5+ processor, the Canon 6D is no slouch when it comes to image quality. Of course, this will greatly depend on the glass that you put in front of it, but from my experience, the 6D provides at least a stop of better low light performance compared to the older 5D Mark II. In some tests available online, the 6D looks to outdo the 5D Mark III in low light. I'd feel very comfortable shooting this camera at ISO 6400 all day, and wouldn't mind pushing it up to ISO 12,800 if I had to.
The 6D also benefits from a lightly better dynamic range and color depth compared to the older 5D Mark II - always a benefit when editing raw files because of the added flexibility and detail.
Canon 6D Sample Images
When testing out new camera, I like to take them out where I would normally take my camera. I don't like shooting test charts and all that technical stuff. I'm not great at analyzing that sort of stuff and I find it quite boring.
Here are a few photos from an afternoon of walking around. All images are processed with Adobe Lightroom.
The Canon 6D is the first camera I've owned that features wi-fi built into it. Moving forward, this is a feature that I want to have on all of my future cameras. I haven't used the wi-fi to move images only my computer, but I've used it to transfer images to my iPhone. I'm hoping a firmware upgrade of some sort allows for full control over the camera in photo AND video modes.
Another feature I want to see on all of my cameras moving forward is the option for a quiet shutter mode. The Canon 6D offers a quiet shutter mode on both single and continuous shooting. The frame rate drops significantly and the viewfinder black out lasts a fraction of a second longer, but its worth it for the times that you want to be a little bit stealthy.
The Not So Good
Everything I've mentioned so far about the Canon 6D has been good, but not everything about the camera is perfect. Here are just some of the things that could be improved upon.
- Button Layout - The smaller frame means more settings are put in menus rather than buttons.
- 1/180 Flash Sync Speed - Not bad, but could certainly be better.
- 1 Card Slot - I've never owned a camera with 2 card slots so it's not too bit of a deal for me, but it seems like 2 slots are a standard these days
The Canon 6D has really been a blast to use. I might even rate this camera over the Fujifilm 100s for my uses. I've sort of always regretted selling my Canon 5D Mark II, but this definitely makes up for it. Does this mark a return to the DSLR for me? Maybe. I don't see myself ever owning more than 1 DSLR, especially with this Canon 6D, which does everything I need it to.
If you're looking for an excellent, affordable full frame DSLR, the Canon 6D is for you. If you shoot Nikon, the D610 looks just as good.