Would You Choose the Sony a7S III Over the Canon EOS R5?

Gene Nagata a.k.a. Potato Jet was pretty excited when the Canon EOS R5 was announced but the dramas surrounding recording limits caused by overheating have become a significant factor. Nagata, along with fellow YouTuber Armando Ferreira, has spent some time testing it alongside the new a7S III from Sony and put the two cameras through their paces before coming to a decision as to which one he wants to add to his arsenal.

Nagata goes into some good detail here, discussing lens choice, log files, megapixels, and more. From this video, you wonder if one of the next big battles between the two systems will be IBIS. Nagata is hugely impressed with the stabilization offered by the R5 in concert with Canon’s IS lenses, and perhaps due to its smaller throat, Sony may have hit some limitations. Right now, Sony has a far bigger array of glass, but the stabilized lenses to be found among the RF system might make Canon the better option for many videographers in the future.

Be sure to check out Armando Ferreira’s video testing out the low light performance of the a7S III by clicking here.

Have you canceled your order for the Canon EOS R5? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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43 Comments

Daniel Lee's picture

I'm stills only and do love my A7III but the R5 and R6 look amazing and make me want to switch back. If I could afford either one, I'd go for an R5 over the A7SIII any day.

Adam Rubinstein's picture

Valid points. Between the two for stills, it’s not even close. If I were shooting video only, I probably wouldn’t look at either. For a blended approach and needing to crop, the Canon, hands down.

Daniel Lee's picture

Yeah the Canon is truly something else. Considering how much they packed into this 5 series camera, I can't wait to see what the R1 will have to offer.

Rayann Elzein's picture

It better be the same form factor / reliability in the field as the 1DX series. For now, the 1DX3 is outstanding both in terms of stills and videos, has fantastic AF including eye-detect. Its only shortcoming, in my opinion, is the 20 MP resolution, which I wish would be a little higher.

Daniel Lee's picture

Yeah I think resolution wise the R1 will likely get a bump up and they were more focused on that which is likely why it didn't get a new sensor.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Again there you go again about the A7III when the article asks about the new A7SIII, funny...

Helga Nowak's picture

Yes funny, R5 vs, A7R3 would be the right one here - similar sensor size, similar user profiles.

Sridhar Chilimuri's picture

if you consider prices it should be R5 vs A7R4

Daniel Lee's picture

Yeah it would be a much better comparison. Canon and Sony's product lines are slightly different too so it's quite hard to do an apples to apples comparison.

Daniel Lee's picture

Shush little girl, go play somewhere else

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Be a big boy and own up to your mistake, and while you're at it, learn some etiquette and say "sorry, my bad"... Saying "Shush little girl, go play somewhere else" makes you look like a immature fool and bully.

Daniel Lee's picture

Haha whatever you'd like to say 🙂 I mentioned my A7III as context of what body I currently own and foargot the S from the last part of my sentence. No need to start crying and getting your little fanboy panties in a bunch, I guess you got nothing better to do though...

Joe Snell's picture

I'd love to see the comparative views data on an 'Andy Day self-promotion Magnum attack' article vs an 'Andy Day lazy gear article that just shows someone else's video' article.

David Pavlich's picture

If I shot video, it wouldn't be either. The S1 would be my choice.

Deleted Account's picture

I'm looking forward to see what the S5 will do. Hope it's competitive with the A7 range and Z5.

Michael Krueger's picture

I have little desire to buy Sony or Canon but I would take the Sony. I do a lot of low light work.

Paul Scharff's picture

No.

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

If I were to do video work, the a7siii. Otherwise, the a9. It's on sale for $3500. :D

Rayann Elzein's picture

I don't understand this: "Right now, Sony has a far bigger array of glass"
I thought the EF lenses are perfectly adaptable on the R5. So which is it now? Adaptable or crap?

Helga Nowak's picture

It works perfectly.With new AF sometimes better than on the EF bodies

Rayann Elzein's picture

Yes that's what I saw many times. That's why I don't understand the statement that there are more lenses for Sony...

Indy Thomas's picture

If you use Canon's adapter, EF lenses perform as native on the R series cameras. Thus the huge catalog of Canon EF lenses dwarfs the native lenses of the Sony catalog. The adapter enables IBIS on unstabilized lenses and thus extended functionality of EF lenses is available.

Shaun Carta's picture

EF lenses are perfectly adaptable on Sony cameras also.

Deleted Account's picture

Does it matter why I or anyone else chooses x above y? Just choose what you like. It's not a religion, you don't have to convince others to make the same choice.

David Yoon's picture

While that’s true, a lot of people turn to articles and videos to make informed choices in gear that they are dropping thousands of dollars on. Typically you won’t know what you are missing out on or what’s actually really good unless you try many different kinds of products to compare. That’s why people turn to online reviews in the hands of people that use many different products.

The whole idea of “switching” to a different brand is a valid point too as many people have thousands of dollars in lenses and other accessories that works with one system and not another. It’s a big decision for most people to have to sell then buy new products again.

Oftentimes people online are trying to justify their purchase that they spent thousands of dollars to others and themselves that they made the “rights choice”. Seeing people they admire use and advocate for one product and having more people in the “brand camp” will help them feel better. But as with all tools, there are use cases and one product is better for one style while it being mediocre for another style. Get one that work for your needs, or multiple if you have multiple needs!

Helga Nowak's picture

A7s3 vs, R5?
again and again these nonsensical comparisons. These are substantially different cameras with different demands and different target groups.
How are you going to seriously compare poor, undersized 12Mpx vs. 45Mpx? For what? Probably just for clicks.
I am a nature photographer and the crop possibility is one of the more important qualities for me.
Video? Please compare the video cameras from Sony and Canon, but not photo cameras or hybrids that are so differently conceived.

And no, I have not canceled my order. I already have my order in the photo bag and I am absolutely thrilled with IS, AF and tracking. R5 is for stills (with unnecessary video option).
Works fine with EF 600mm + adapter, better than my other cameras. It's the best camera for stills I've ever had.

David Yoon's picture

If you watch the video, you’ll see the guys are cinematographers. The video was about video capabilities of the cameras. Many people use DSLR and Mirrorless format cameras rather than cinema cameras for video due to costs and the size and convenience. In fact the video capabilities of the R5 was what Canon’s marketing headlined prior to the release. The S line of A7 cameras were always video focused. There’s absolutely a valid use case and comparison.

Helga Nowak's picture

I'm waiting for the further comparison of A7s3 vs smartphone. You can also use it for video ...

David Yoon's picture

And there’s a valid comparison there. Generally smartphone video quality is great if there’s plenty of light and you don’t crop in or push the file in editing.

The main point being, Canon tried to market the R5 as an 8K beast of a camera before and during the release and turned to have serious limitations. If the video features on the R5 are unnecessary or not is besides the point because that was what was marketed.

Just because something does not match your personal use case does not invalidate others’ use cases for the same product.

I can say to you “I shoot landscape, I don’t care about the autofocus. Using the R5 is stupid. I only use the GFX cameras or the Sony A7R4 to get that extra stop of dynamic range and resolution. Using the R5 to compare it to the Sony A7R4 and Fuji GFX system is just for clicks.”

Andrew Morse's picture

I agree with all your comments, but just as an aside on the landscape use case comparison, the R5 has scored ever so slightly higher on dynamic range than the a7RIV, and just about identical to the GFX 50R (low ISO anyway) according to photons to photos. I'd note, P2P suggested that there seemed to be some low ISO noise reduction happening on the R5 which may be baked into the Raw files to get DR to where it was. Whether any of that really matters in the end is up to the user, but I'd only note that the perception that Canon can't produce a camera with sufficient dynamic range may not be so clear cut in this instance:

https://www.photonstophotos.net/Charts/PDR.htm#Canon%20EOS%20R5,Sony%20I...

David Yoon's picture

Yep, that’s correct, but I’m not sure how badly the noise reduction degrades image quality. I agree with you. But honestly at that level of DR, it’s not that much different unless you are pixel peeping.

Like the GFX 100 on paper has a higher DR, but the images fall apart due to the horizontal banding from the phase detect pixels compared to the 50MP siblings. I would say the 50R or 50S actually has more usable DR than the 100 due to that.

Again more of an exercise to demonstrate that different tools for different people.

Helga Nowak's picture

" Using the R5 is stupid."
Thanks for nice words.
It would be stupid to use the GFX for birds in flight.
You have your preferences, I have others.
Compare of low resolution camera like A7s3 with a 45MPx is simply pointless. There are completely different volumes of data that have to be generated and processed.
Comparison of R5 with A7R3 or A7R4 could apply, but with A7s3 is just stupid.
So like David:
"Again more of an exercise to demonstrate that different tools for different people."
Nothing here is stupid

Andrew Morse's picture

I'm not sure I understand your comment - I never said the R5 was stupid, was that directed at David? My comments were simply noting that the R5 was scoring very well in dynamic range. I interpreted David's comment as noting that the best tool for the job very much depends on the person and the job, hence his example of using GFX or a7RIV bodies for landscapes. I didn't interpret that as him saying the R5 was stupid, rather it seemed like an example of a different perspective based on a use case scenario. Personally, I'd argue that the R5 has a pretty attractive use case for any stills-focused users, but to each their own.

Helga Nowak's picture

Sorry, my mistake - clicked wrong post.
Yes, he called that stupid.
The one sentence where I agree with David is
"Again more of an exercise to demonstrate that different tools for different people."

As has often been heard - the R5: a great camera for stills and terrible, deceptive marketing.

Daniel Akerman's picture

For me, it’s neither lens array nor tech specs that really tilt the scales. All major manufacturers are releasing incredible equipment these days, and with the availability of 3rd party lenses, lens arrays are very comparable.

What decides this one for me is design philosophy and approach to the consumer. That Canon would release a camera with such incredible specs but leave them so severely limited reflects poorly on Canon. Either they are releasing something inherently flawed for the sake of claiming cutting edge technology, or they are luring people to their system only to force them to wait patiently for a period of YEARS before the full capability of the system is realized. Neither reflects well on Canon, no matter how good a stills camera the R5 and R6 are.

Rayann Elzein's picture

How is the R5 so "severely limited"? Did you even try it before saying this?

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

I remember when the R5 was getting all the hype. I wasn't surprised to see this "Top Seller":

https://i.imgur.com/t5Ya4JL.jpg

.
.
Then, along comes somewhat silent Sony...bam, "#1 Seller":

https://i.imgur.com/UuZwbC5.jpg

Rayann Elzein's picture

And what's your point? That they're expensive?

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

My bad. Top Seller vs #1 Seller.

Deleted Account's picture

Still the question remains. What's the point and why should we care?

Gil Jesus Seraspe's picture

I hate to say this. But these so-called photographers and experts knows nothing about what they are talking ag about regarding mount size of any cameras! The keep whining about the size of Sony e-mount blah, blah, blah! Yet, in my test of all brands and types of cameras and even phones, Sony has always been brighter! I noticed this a long time ago, since nex times. Even my iphones and pixel phone is a thousand times smaller than any full frame or medium format cameras, the exposure are always identical! Same goes to m43 vs apsc etc! Stop the bullshit! It's the metering sensitivity and current given to each sensor from the manufacturer standards and the size of the weighted segments metering of the using company's based algorithms and NOT THE SIZE OF THE FUCKING MOUNT! Ok? STFU ALREADY! Canon R5 has the worst color to start with especially in video! A7smk3 is very close to my Venice and it's a great b-cam!

Jai Kumar's picture

Yes definitely I would choose Sony A7s III because I already have a collection of lenses from Sony and don't want to change them and also Sony is just a winner over Canon compare to those 2 models.

UBMS united broadcast's picture

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