Sony a7R IV vs Canon EOS R5 Portrait Photography Comparison: Can You Tell the Difference?

These were the two cameras I considered endlessly before finally opting for the Canon EOS R5. Here, we see them both put side by side, taking portrait photos in an identical setting for all intents and purposes. Can you tell the difference between the two?

It's safe to say the new Canon EOS R5 has made quite the splash in the photography world. Video issues aside, most reviewers and new owners are positively gushing about the results and performance of the EOS R5. Indeed, it has been so popular that Canon hasn't been able to keep up with the orders — something I'm well aware of considering the recent update I received saying my new EOS R5 may not arrive until October! On the one hand, it's torturing me having to wait so long, but on the other hand, it comforts me that I'm not alone in my desire to get one of these in my hands.

This review from Jared Polin also reaffirms my belief that I didn't make a horrible blunder in going for the EOS R5 over the Sony a7R IV. Here, he pits the two cameras against each other in a portrait setting. Interestingly, he used the native Canon RF 85mm f/1.2 lens (shot at f/1.4) with the EOS R5, but chose to use the Sigma Art 85mm f/1.4 (shot at f/1.4) with the Sony. Why? Because he said the Sigma Art is a far better lens than the native Sony G Master equivalent, which certainly raised my eyebrows. As far as the results are concerned, I'll let you be the judge. I came away very happy, particularly when you consider that the Sony's sensor is more than 15 MP larger than the EOS R5's.

Undoubtedly, both are great cameras, and you really can't go wrong with either. I opted to stay with Canon because I'm already heavily invested in its ecosystem. That being said, I've had many sleepless nights wondering whether I made the right choice or not. This review has done a lot to assuage any doubts I had. Give it a look and let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

Iain Stanley's picture

Iain Stanley is an Associate Professor teaching photography and composition in Japan. Fstoppers is where he writes about photography, but he's also a 5x Top Writer on Medium, where he writes about his expat (mis)adventures in Japan and other things not related to photography. To view his writing, click the link above.

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There is no overheating issue with the R5.
It's now proven that a fake timer start as soon as video mode is put on and shut down the camera without any temperature relationship.
even one picture every minute inside a fridge is triggering it!
And removing the battery cell that hold the time is actually resetting it, so you can shoot forever.
What a joke.

Is it real ?

or Is this just fantasy?

Open your eyes, look up to the skies and see

Check on EOSHD, IT's test they did withn a fridge, just one picture per minute during an hour.
After switching 60 picture, switching to HQ video gives 0 second available, the camera shut down.

They translated the article and explain the test with the battery holding the memory
There are plenty of temperature recording too.
The camera stop for "overheat" he remove the battery (with the tiny cell removed), put it back and magically, there is no more overheating!
Recovery time is down to 5mn instead of an hour.

and about 50mn of 8K?


Without this little trick, the camera was "overheating" after taking picture every minute for an hour...

Certainly interesting that it resets the overheat timer, but concluding that overheating is fake may yet be a bit premature. I think we need a bit more assessment to fairly conclude that. A few other outlets/comments on other forums have already challenged that conclusion for a bunch of reasons. Roger from Lens rentals had some comments on that:

And there was a comment on Fred Miranda which had a user able to decrease cool down time in some circumstances, implying that the cool down time was not just a straight timer:

As with any mass produced product, the R5 will have been engineered to handle a variety of different scenarios and use cases, and I would bet the cool down protocol was designed to handle worst case scenarios and is overzealous for some uses. The big thing that sticks with me is that we have no idea what bypassing temperature cool down protocols will do to the longevity of the camera. It is certainly possible that there is a part or component that can be damaged by prolonged heat, and if Canon were to reduce cool down protocols too much, we could see R5s fail due to prolonged overheating, or degraded performance over time.

I think the bottom line is that no-one outside of Canon has fully reverse engineed the R5 yet, but this is such a hot topic (pun intended) that eventually the community of users will figure out the reasoning behind overheating, whatever it is. To be clear; I'm not saying it isn't a deliberate choice by Canon to reduce video functionality, I just think it is a bit too soon to draw conclusions, but we will get there with all the attention overheating is getting.

Taking one picture per minute make the video recording possibility to 0 with the camera shutting down when installed inside a fridge.
In other hands, there is no recording limit using an external recorder and the body is extremely hot.
Another full description here.
It's getting mainstream now.
Good luck with this Canon to explain "overheat limit"

best comparison to decide which one is best. thanks for sharing this article with us

Wow! Top of the line cameras with top of the line lenses can take good portrait photos. What a surprise!

Fair comparison. Keep in mind where you want to use it for. In my opinion Canon wants two things with one camera, where can you use 8k movies and is your computer able to handle that? On the other hand the Sony is more of the same as medium format camera's. For me movies doesn't interest me that much. Think they are both very good and 4k movies are possible. My investments on Sony lenses made me make a very simple discission.

"You guys were like...."