Why Should You Avoid the Canon EOS R5?

Why Should You Avoid the Canon EOS R5?

Despite being a 45 MP stills and 8K raw video monster, is there a reason why you shouldn't buy the new Canon EOS R5 mirrorless when compared to the rest of Canon's mirrorless lineup?

Aimed at hybrid shooters (those that work in both stills and video), the EOS R5 has some insane specs in such a small form factor, but the EOS R5 behemoth may have some hidden flaws. Speculation is out surrounding how hot the camera might get when shooting at full resolution, and I'm sure there are some out there that would argue the 8K video shooting is pointless because viewing devices aren't ready for it. Until we've been shooting with the camera for a long period of time, it seems that those issues won't be addressed just yet. 

Canon EOS R5 photo

It's hard to think of a reason to avoid the EOS R5

I've been sat at my desk writing about these two new pieces of kit for months now, and I've got five reasons to avoid the EOS R6, but I can't, for the life of me, come up with five for the EOS R5, at least not on paper. The only reason I can muster is below.

It’ll Leave a Hole in Your Wallet

Yes, that's right. At $3,899 (£4,199 or nearly $7,585 Australian Dollars) it’s $1,400 more expensive than its little brother, the EOS R6. It's also a good $1,000 more expensive than Nikon's Z 7 (also a 45MP monster, but only shoots 4K video) and about $400 more than the Sony a7R IV (which shoots at 61MP). But other than that, it's worthy of every penny, from what I can see.

Canon EOS R5 card slots photo

It's not just the price of the camera body, but you'll have to purchase the more expensive CFexpress cards too

Does It Overheat?

Pros have been shooting with both cameras for a while now (as we know, they were originally teased back in February 2020, so they've had plenty of time to test them), and there have been rumors going around that both the EOS R6 and EOS R5 overheat when filming. But surely, if that were the case, then the pros would've already fed that information back to Canon? Would they really release a camera worth $3,899 with a known fault? Probably not, but we'll have to see.

8K Video Isn't That Important

If you're not sure about 8K movie recording or why you need it and arguing that you don't have an 8K screen, you're missing the point. Sure, you could record at 8K and display it as such, and that's great for cinema productions. But you can also crop in and pan/track within the frame and still output to full 4K resolution. So, if video isn't really a big part of why you're buying this camera, it's either not the right one for you or you don't want to crop in.

This camera is designed for hybrid shooting and does both (at least on paper) extremely well. Overall, price is the only determining factor as to whether you get the Canon EOS R5 or not, at least in my opinion.

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Bjarne Solvik's picture

The A7r3 is better to compare with and that sells for 2500 usd. Besides 8k I don’t know what better specs the R5 have. Sony have ibis, dual slots, good eye-af and good focus in general. And option of many second hand lenses as well as third party offerings, like from Tamron. Partial owned by Sony.

Canon did not hold back anything but the form factor creates a limit so this camera still will not do as a pro video camera.

This camera and lenses are to expensive for me. If the R6 would have a 30 MP sensor and cost 500 less, I would be keen to test out.

Still, these cameras are good news.

Vincent B's picture

I feel you're missing the point: the R5 is like 5Ds, it's a photo camera body.

And probably a good one. It's not priced too differently from the 5D Mark IV. There's a huge quality and usability difference between the 5D and the 6D, differences that are important for pro photographers.

5DII era — were filming with it was indeed a solution because it was so much better than the competition for the price— is long gone and video cameras are numerous. If you want to film, chose a camera that does this primarily, not a photo camera body. The R6 isn't going to be better as it will also demand a lot of pricy accessories to unleash the filming potential.

5s have been tremendous photo cameras since the III and IV, when autofocus issues were gradually fixed. 6D was definitely a prosumer cam and I suffered a lot for a week when using a couple of them for a pro shoot. A huge part of the IV body resides in the parametric keys. Something that's mandatory for pro photo shooting but useless for film shooting. Something that's not on 6Ds. Just the main rotary knob on 6Ds is painful to operate.

5DIV was very pricey but was worth it just for the photo part. Video is bonus.

Title could read "Why Should You Avoid the Canon EOS R5 for film?" and the answer is the same for all 5x and 6x: they're photo cams. You'll enjoy being able to film with them at times, even professionally, but don't buy them for that, other options are better for filming.

David Love's picture

Even from the camera side, besides a bump in megapixels and ibis, I don't see a huge reason to upgrade my Mark 4 and besides the 4k option which was ruined with mjpeg, there really wasn't a reason to upgrade my mark 3. So I'll wait. If you're not shooting in a studio all the time then I can see a lot of the new features being helpful but not for me.

Kenneth Tanaka's picture

C'mon, Fstoppers. This is an awfully lame, uninformative post.

Patrick Rosenbalm's picture

I like your articles on photography such as, "How to Photograph Comet NEOWISE in 8 Steps", for example. You have an impressive resume and work But these clickbaity articles about the new Canon cameras are just plain useless. It's like you are digging hard for something to write about and going in circles in a pro / con loop. Always the same conclusion: Does it fit your needs?
And this comment is likely falling on deaf ears because after looking through the comments on several of your articles I never saw where you replied to any comments. "Dump and Run" I think it's called. With your credentials I'm very disappointed in this conceited attitude.

David Love's picture

This is the problem when they only let ambassadors review the camera before release. Some are getting hyped and some are losing interest over specs. If they know there is a problem that people aren't going to be happy with then they should release a video showing the 8k process as far as overheating and any workaround. Will the camera just shut off without saving my file? Will it still overheat if you are doing individual one minute shots or does the heat just build up over time? Right now it's a big no for me.

Kirk Darling's picture

Well, of course they're only going to use "ambassadors" for pre-release testing. The entire point is to get early feedback from users with known experience both in various genres of photography and with Canon equipment...then used their input to tweak the final production.

Their primary purpose is actually NOT to give consumers early reviews, it's to to give feedback to the company. That's just an additional perk for being a pre-release tester. Until recently the public never even knew who the pre-release testers were.

If you're actually been paying attention at all, you should already know that the camera will give you a warning that it's beginning to overheat. You should also know that if you really depend on 8K, you need to buy a cine camera designed for routine 8K work, not a hybrid camera for which 8K video represents "cutting edge" capability.

Robert McCaslan's picture

Okay, I'll bite.

Canon still makes the best lenses. Sure, there are excellent lenses from all manufacturers like the Nikon 105 f/1.4 and the Sony 135 1/8, but for the most part Canon dominates zoom lenses. The 28-70 f/2 is the class of mid-range zooms, but if you want more traditional zooms--zooms that you might take with you and actually use--the new rf trinity (the 15-35 in particular is yummy, and that compact 70-200 is truly innovative) hits the spot. Also, the 100-500 is a nice upgrade in specs, which we can rely on to be at least as good IQ-wise as its predecessor, the venerable 100-400. And if your budget can't handle these $2000+ gems, Canon is filling in its budget offerings with STM zooms, 2.0 primes, and exotic budget super-telephotos like the 600 and 800mm primes.

In terms of specs, I don't care about video, but this body looks amazing. Sure, you can just check off boxes like 45mp and IBIS in other bodies, but it looks like Canon has better implemented these features. If the R5 lives up to the early impressions, it is likely the best all-around body ever produced by any manufacturer. The AF promises to be somewhere in between the A7R and A9 Sonys, which is good indeed. To have AF in an all-arounder approach the performance of a sports-focused body is a true accomplishment. The continuous rate matches the A9 and gives you an extra 20MP for good measures. And if Canon manages to keep rolling shutter under control, who needs a sports camera? And a fully articulated LCD? Nice! Neither Sony nor Nikon have it. That feature ticks a major box for me.

Yes, they all now have IBIS, and the Nikon's IBIS is actually very good. The Canon's promises to be better with a claimed 8-stops of stabilization on the 28-70, a lens which relies entirely on IBIS for stabilization. Of course, no one believes it will be this good, but it promises to be better than all the other guys.

Hence, like a lot of innovations, you can get almost all the features elsewhere, but you can't get them elsewhere in the same package with the same level of quality and attention to detail.

Now, back to my first item. With Nikon and Sony, with a few exceptions (the primes I mentioned and the 200-500/200-600 affordable zooms, and I'm looking forward to seeing Canon take this zoom segment by storm in the next year or two), I've always looked for third-party solutions because the OEM offerings were always ho-hum or overpriced or both. Canon's lens offerings are definitely overpriced, but they are anything but ho-hum.

Matt White's picture

"Would they really release a camera worth $3,899 with a known fault? Probably not, but we'll have to see."

Our survey says: https://www.dpreview.com/news/0965339225/canon-issues-media-alert-to-cla...

Pieter Batenburg's picture

All these articles are wildly amusing because no reviewers has actually tested a production version of the camera and really tried it out. It is all conjecture.

Lux Shots's picture

Canon's specs are Canon's specs. No need to wonder when it's right there in black and white.

taluno taleni's picture

and don't forget that in europe is sold at 4500€ that are 5,144$....

Christian Leibig's picture

Just when I thought the quality of articles here couldn't go lower than this https://fstoppers.com/gear/5-reasons-avoid-canon-eos-r6-498814

Here we go again.

Camera is expensive:
Yeah, so are other cameras with a professional profile. The 45MP at up to 20fps with this feature package is unprecedented. If you're shooting fast action and want more resolution, the R5 might be the camera to get. "Professional level camera is expensive, news at 11".

First of all: At the time this article was posted, Canon has already clarified that the camera _will_ indeed overheat, so the statement in the article is just outdated and also wrong. But why update/change the article just because there is new information, that sounds like work...quality reporting here guys.
Second: Everyone is losing their mind about 8K and 4K60 overheating. 20 Minutes of 8K is more than plenty for most people, and if you need more be ready to spend a multiple of the R5's price on a camera. You could buy multiple R5s and use them round-robin before reaching the price of an 8K capable cinema camera (noone who rigs their camera is going to do that, but it works as an illustration).
Granted the 4K60 limitation can be a problem. For me it's almost a non-issue because of plenty of breaks in between shots. My personal poll among colleagues says the same. I know and understand there will be people who will run into real problems with this limitation. But right now I assume the vast majority of commenters is out to say "how could you, Canon!" while never actually running into this limitation.

8K Video not important:
Again, guys. This Camera takes pictures at 45MP at 12fps/20fps and seems to have revolutionary AF. But yeah, 8K video would be the _only_ reason to ever consider this camera...
The only cameras to come close are an Sony Alpha 99 from 2016 (42MP@12fps) which is an abandoned system, and a Leica SL2 (47MP@20fps), which is even more expensive. I might have missed some cameras but this shows how large the market is.

You may have "won" the engagement game by getting me to comment on these two articles. But you have lost some of my respect long-term. Not sure this was worth it "for the clicks".

David Love's picture


talks about overheating at 4k 120.

Dan Worland's picture

I upgraded to the R from a 5D3 about a year ago. Bought 4 RF lenses. Couldn’t be happier. I was excited to see the R5 and R6 finally released. But FOR ME, neither is worthy of upgrading from my R. The R6 is a downgrade in sensor resolution and the R5 is twice expensive. About the price as my new RF 50 1.2.

Plus, my camera is only about a year old. I really want ibis and would love to have a second slot like my 5d3 had. But I’ll wait for a few years. Maybe the R2? I’m betting all future canon mirrorless will have ibis.

I don’t do video so those crazy good specs don’t mean much to me.

Steve H's picture

An article by someone who uses Nikon and admits that what's he's written is based on speculation rather than real world experience.
Why does this site have any credibility if it's content is written by shills and isn't properly edited.
But that's a silly question. Because it's not about informing readers, just how much traffic they can generate.

Guy Huntley's picture

I'm going for the 8k video along with everything else. Why 8k video? Frame grabs! Try capturing a 3 year old scampering around the property. To capture that elusive moment with a plain old camera is a matter of luck. At 30 frames a second it is likely. It also works for birds in flight, air shows, or any other fast action. 4k frame grabs are only 8 mPixels. They are OK but I'm looking forward to 8k grabs.

Having said that, I would be happier with a 6k option. The smaller 18 mPixel files would be easier to support than 33 mPixel files.

Richard Vernick's picture

The real question for most potential buyers is how you intend to use the camera. For me, as a nature and wildlife photographer, the R5 will be a godsend. I need the frame rate. the 45 mp resoltion will give me great reach when I need to crop or use 1.6 Crop mode. The 8 K video will allow short bursts and let me extract high resoltion still frames. It is weather sealed and light weight. The 1DX M3 quality autofocus and animal auto focus will be very helpful. The ability to use my legacy EF glass without much penalty. So in the end, while the average wedding photographer may not need all that this camera offers, I will welcome mine - already on Pre Order from Allens Camera.

Ryan Hartford's picture

After simply seeing the price paragraph header, I can obviously tell this article isn’t for professional photographers as people who make money with their camera, price generally won’t be too much of an issue knowing it won’t take long to make $4000.

Pieter Batenburg's picture

That is funny because most pros I see working have really old cameras and are reluctant to spend money on new gear. I seldom see pros working with the newest stuff.