Canon just announced their new mid-level full frame camera this week – the Canon EOS 6D . I started wondering about what this new entry meant to the travel photography community. After conducting some research on the 6D and its specifications, I came to the following conclusions. Here is the link to the specification comparison that I used for my research for this article.
- Lighter weight. If a travel photographer wants a full frame DSLR instead of a crop sensor or one of the new EVIL (Electronic View Finder with Interchangeable Lenses) cameras, the Canon 6D is lighter than the 5D Mark II, 5D Mark III, and the Canon 7D (crop sensor). See the specification comparison.
- ISO Range. The Canon 6D has an ISO range that is equal to the 5D Mark III (100 – 25600, expandable to 102400). This is very useful for travel photographers. A travel photographer will encounter many dimly lit places where a tripod is not allowed and high ISO is necessary to get a sharp image. Some examples are: monuments / memorials on cloudy days, morning and evening shots of city streets and buildings where it is difficult to set up a tripod due to crowds and traffic, and museums.
- Megapixels (20.2). While smaller than the 5D Mark III (22.3), the 6D still has plenty of megapixels for cropping and large prints.
- Built in GPS. This could be terrific. If you like to geotag your images with the exact location, this could save a lot of time if it is fully integrated with the metadata of the photos.
- Built in WiFi. This could also be a very useful feature. However, the rumor is that it only works for JPEG and not RAW images. Regardless, this could help travel photographers to quickly post images to their blogs or social media sites. No more need for the Apple Camera Connection Kit.
- Weather sealing. The Canon 6D was announced with weather sealing as one of the features while the 5D Mark III was promoted with enhanced weather sealing. Weather sealing is important to travel photographers as they can be caught out in the open with little or no protection from the elements. In fact, stormy skies can produce some of the best effects for city and travel photos. That said, you will have to determine if this is worth the additional $1,500 for the 5D Mark III
- Card Slots. Dual card slots are perfect for photographers who like immediate backup of their images. This eliminates the need to back up to an external hard drive on the road to have redundancy. The Canon 6D only has one SD card. I prefer CF cards to SD cards as they are more durable.
- AF Points. The 6D has 11 AF points compared to 61 for the 5D Mark III and 19 for the 7D. The 6D also has only 1 center cross-type point. While additional AF points help with focusing flexibility, I’m not sure this is a show stopper for travel photographers.