In this review, we’ll be doing a Sony a7 vs Canon 5D Mark III comparison and both cameras are entry level cameras. As a result of this, we have put together the features of each camera and pitted those of one camera against those of the other camera.
However, if you are pressed for time, refer to the comparison review and comparison table sections as they contain the basic information.
Comparison Overview — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Overall Rating of the Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
To start with we would love to say that both the Sony a7 and the Canon 5D Mark III offer interesting features.
That said, the Sony a7 is better than the Canon 5D Mark III in terms of image quality. The Sony a7 has a sensor resolution of 24 megapixels while that of the Canon 5D Mark III is 22 megapixels.
Both have the same shutter speed (1/8000 second) and are also close in terms of ISO (maximum and low ISO).
We consider the Sony a7 generally better for photography (although we must point out that the Canon 5D Mark III is more superior in aspect of sports photography).
As for video operations, despite the fact that they both have a 1920 x 1080 video resolution, we also consider the Sony a7 the better camera because of its higher frame rate and sensor resolution.
Price/Value Ratio – Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
The Sony a7 is quite affordable camera while the Canon 5D Mark III is expensive.
The Sony a7 is the lesser of the two in terms of price. It’s important to point out that the two cameras offer quality features, specifications and level of performance regardless of their prices.
About The Brands
Sony Corporation is a Japanese multinational company. It has a diversified business system which includes consumer and professional electronics, entertainment and gaming. The company also offers financial services.
Sony is one of the leading manufacturers of electronic products for both consumer and professional markets. It is a leading player in the film industry and has a reputation for producing quality and durable products such as lenses and cameras.
Canon Corporation is a Japanese multinational corporation that specializes in the manufacture of imaging and optical products, most importantly cameras. It majorly specializes in producing DSLR cameras.
Canon has a wide selection of lenses to choose from. This is due in part to the fact that Canon has been around for a decent period of time.
Comparison Table — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|Body Type||SLR-style mirrorless||Mid-Size SLR|
|Max Resolution||6000 x 4000||5760 x 3840|
|Dimensions||(127 x 94x 48)mm||(152 x 116 x 76)mm|
|ISO||50 to 25600||100 to 25600|
|Continuous Shooting||5 Frames Per Second||6 Frames Per Second|
|Cross Type Focus Points||25||41|
|Sensor Resolution||24 megapixels||22 megapixels|
|LCD Screen Resolution||1.230k dots||1.040k dots|
|LCD Screen Size||3”||3.2”|
|Flash Synchronization Port||None||Yes|
|Autofocus at f/8 aperture||None||Center point|
|Sensor Pixel Area||35.65 micro meter square||39.06 micro meter square|
|Continuous Shooting||5 frames per second||6 frames per second|
|Low Light ISO||2248||2293|
|Max Boosted Light Sensitivity||Nil||102400 ISO|
|Battery Life||340 shots||950 Shots|
|DxO Overall Score||90||81|
|Max Flash Synchronization||1/250s||1/200s|
|Time-Lapse Recording||With downloadable app||None|
|Auto Focus Tracking||Yes||No|
|Smartphone Remote Control||Yes||No|
Which Is Better Under What Circumstance? — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|The Sony a7 camera is the better of the two cameras in terms of overall image quality. This is in large part due to the 24-megapixel sensor resolution of the camera.||The Canon 5D Mark III camera is the preferred option when it comes to the longevity of the battery of a camera. The Canon 5D Mark III camera has a battery life of 950 shots which is almost 300% that of the Sony a7.|
|The Sony a7 is something to consider if you are going on a hike or a long walk because it is so compact.||The Canon 5D Mark III camera is the preferred camera when the photographer has to shoot at a high frequency in fast moving environments. This is as a result of its superior continuous shooting rating.|
|The Sony a7 is something to consider if you need to save a few bucks. It is pretty good for both photography and videography and is still affordable.||The Canon 5D Mark III camera has more to offer in terms of situations that require the use of cross type focus points. Its 41 cross type focus points is superior to the 25 present in the Sony a7. It helps to enhance better focus and it also results in the photographer getting better shots.|
Common Features — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
1. Dual Axis Electronic Level
The Sony a7 and Canon 5D Mark III cameras both have the dual axis electronic level. Electronic level is a feature that helps to indicate the alignment level within the viewfinder and on the LCD screen.
Dual axis electronic level comes in handy when the photographers have to level the pitch of the camera to make sure that the verticals are vertically captured. This applies most times when the photographer is carrying out landscape photography.
2. External Flash Shoe
External flash shoe is an opening on the camera through which the external flash can be connected to the camera. It is also referred to as a hot shoe. The external flash is better than the in-built flash in most cases and it is more employed than the built-in flash by the professionals.
A couple of factors are responsible for this. One of which is the fact that the flash has some form of flexibility in terms of the ways it can be turned and angled.
Also, the external flash is more powerful than the in-built flash in terms of illuminating or lighting up objects that are located at a long distance from the camera.
3. Face Detection
This feature makes it possible for the two cameras to recognize human faces in a congested environment.
Face detection is generally helpful when the photographer so wishes to be precise in setting the focus when he or she has to frame in a crowded environment.
The fact that this feature enables the camera zoom in on the desired faces helps to ensure that the final image does not contain elements that are not needed. It makes it easier for the photographer to take accurate shots.
4. Weather Sealing
Weather sealing is the protection of the parts of a camera from unfavorable conditions such as humidity, moisture and dust. Generally, weather sealing of camera helps to increase the life span of the camera.
5. Microphone Port
Microphone ports are very important in cameras (especially in the aspect of videography). The reason for this opinion of ours is that it allows the photographer to record high quality sounds (without the interference of handling noises).
Videos recorded with cameras that have external microphone have better audio quality because external microphones only record required or necessary sound.
6. LCD Screen Resolution
The Sony a7 camera has a screen resolution of 1.040k dots while the Canon 5D Mark III has a screen resolution of 1.230k dots. The good screen resolution rating of the two cameras makes the images clearer on the screen and does not necessarily affect the actual outcome.
7. Sensor Resolution
The Sony a7 and the Canon 5D Mark III also have good sensor resolution. Sensor resolution is a property of the camera sensor that majorly determines the quality of your output image and it is measured in pixels.
The Sony a7 has a sensor resolution of 24 megapixels while the Canon 5D Mark III has a sensor resolution of 22 megapixels. This small difference will translate in a small difference in image quality, all things being equal.
This feature alongside pixel pitch and sensor pixel area go a long way in determining the quality of the final image. Technological advancement also affects the performance of sensors as they are always improved on as time goes on.
The Sony a7 has a pixel pitch of 5.97 micro meter while the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a pixel pitch of 6.25 micro meter.
8. Continuous Shooting
The Sony a7 and the Canon 5D Mark III both have fair continuous shooting ratings. The Sony a7 has a continuous shooting rating of 5 frames per second while that of the Canon 5D Mark III is 6 frames per second.
Continuous shooting is most relevant when shooting in a high speed environment. In this mode, the photographer can take more than one consecutive shot in just one second.
Continuous shooting could also help to reduce camera shake. Since pushing the shutter button might cause some form of movement, the second shot is mostly okay as it doesn’t experience any form of shake.
Continuous shooting also helps to capture unanticipated move or action when shooting (say in sports or wildlife). It helps the photographer have a comprehensive shot.
9. Maximum Shutter Speed
The Sony a7 and Canon 5D Mark III both have good maximum shutter speed. Shutter speed is the period of time for which the camera’s shutter remains open while the photographer takes a shot.
The nature of the shooting assignment determines the shutter speed at which the photographer is going to shoot. This is so because some photography types require being shot at high shutter speed while others require moderate shutter speed (if the photographer is to obtain the expected quality).
It is also to note that exposure level varies with shutter speed. What we are saying in essence is that there is a relationship between the exposure level of a camera and its shutter speed.
For instance, much light gets to the camera’s sensor at a lower shutter speed and a small amount of light gets to the camera’s sensor when using a fast shutter speed.
Both the Sony a7 and the Canon 5D Mark III have a shutter speed of 1/8000 second. This shows that the two cameras have a good shutter speed. This makes the cameras relevant for different photography purposes as they offer fast and slow shutter speeds.
10. Headphone Port
The need for a pair of headphones cannot be overstated (especially in video recording) as it is very pivotal in obtaining quality sound. And the reason for this is that the headphone helps in checking the quality of sound from the instance it’s been recorded.
11. Auto Exposure Bracketing
Auto exposure bracketing is a technique in digital photography that involves the photographer taking different shots of the same image with differing exposure settings
In general, auto bracketing allows you take three shots (minimum). The first shot of the object is correctly exposed, another is underexposed to light, while the third (and last in most cases) is slightly over-exposed to light. The photographer then has the option of picking the best image out of the available options.
The Sony a7 camera has an auto exposure bracket rating of +/- 5EV while the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a rating of +/- 3EV. These two cameras have good auto exposure bracketing ratings as photographers require a +/- 2EV rating to work most times.
The Sony a7 camera allows the photographer take up to 5 bracketed shots while the Canon 5D Mark III allows photographers take maximum of 8 bracketed shots.
Auto Bracketing is a life saver for photographers in terms of picking the best exposure settings when they are shooting in tough light conditions.
12. Max ISO
ISO is a measure of the sensitivity of the image sensor of a camera. It is one of the major elements of digital photography; the other two elements are shutter speed and aperture.
High ISOs are very important in digital photography as they come in handy in poor light. They help the photographer to obtain better image quality in such areas where it is normally hard to get good images.
High ISOs also come in handy when one has to shoot at a high shutter speed as it allows more light get to the sensor.
The Sony a7 has an ISO rating of 50-25600 while the Canon 5D Mark III has an ISO rating of 100-25600. We can see that the two cameras are pretty similar in this aspect.
13. RAW Support
Shooting RAW enables the photographer save images in their true or original form.
It has been proven that RAW format is better than the other formats (JPEG particularly). One of the reasons for this assertion is that RAW records greater levels of brightness than JPEG format.
JPEG records 256 levels of brightness while RAW records between 4096 and 16384 levels of brightness. RAW captures in either 12 or 14 bits while JPEG captures in 8 bits.
Another benefit of shooting RAW is the fact that shooting RAW allows you to get the highest level of quality. This is so because RAW records all of the data from the sensor.
A Sony a7 Demonstration Video — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Unique Features — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
1. Video Operations
The Sony a7 and the Canon 5D Mark III cameras are both good for recording videos as they both have a video resolution of 1920 by 1080.
However, the reason this feature is in this section is because the two cameras have differing frame rates. The Sony a7 has a frame rate of 60p while the Canon 5D Mark III has a frame rate of 30p. This affects how relevant the two cameras are in terms of videography.
The Sony a7 which has a frame rate of 60p can be used to shoot conveniently in a fast moving environment (unlike the Canon 5D Mark III). It can also do all that the Canon 5D Mark III can offer.
2. Focus Points
Focus points, as the name implies, are those cursors in a camera with which the photographer isolates a targeted object.
It is an important feature as it helps the photographer to get quality images in a crowded environment without giving anything away in terms of the quality of the image.
That said, the Sony a7 has 117 focus points while the Canon 5D Mark III camera has 61 focus points.
3. Battery Life
Basically, the Sony a7 camera has a battery that is inferior to that of the Canon 5D Mark III.
The Sony a7 has a battery life of 340 shots while the Canon 5D Mark III has a battery life of 950 shots. And this is honestly a huge difference.
If the track record of the two brands are to be considered, we will see that Canon has a reputation for making good batteries while Sony has this as an Achilles heel. They rarely make good and long lasting batteries.
4. Storage Slots
The Sony a7 camera has one storage slot while the Canon 5D Mark III has two. Users who pick the Canon 5D Mark III over the Sony a7 have the assurance that they cannot run out of space easily.
5. Sensor Pixel Area
The area of the sensor of a camera also has a role to play in digital photography. The larger the sensor pixel area, the better the image quality. Cameras that have low sensor resolution but large sensor pixel area will still be able to snap good pictures.
Canon 5D Mark III camera has a larger sensor pixel area than the Sony a7. With a pixel area of 39.06 micro meter square, the Canon 5D Mark III can still compete with the Sony a7 which has a better sensor resolution in terms of image quality.
6. Wireless Connection
With wireless connection, the photographer is able to upload his or her files to online storage clouds where others can view it. Saving images in these clouds also helps to reduce the volume of pictures than needs to be stored on the native SD cards present in the camera.
The Sony a7 has in built wireless connection while the Canon 5D Mark III doesn’t.
The Sony a7 camera weighs 474 grams while the Canon 5D Mark III camera weighs 950 grams. This is an obvious 476-gram difference in weight which cannot be overlooked.
Bear in mind that the Sony a7 is mirrorless while the Canon 5D Mark III camera is not. And this is a major contributing factor to the difference in weight.
This feature is one of the reasons why the Sony a7 has better ratings than the Canon 5D Mark III in the aspect of daily and street photography.
8. Articulating Screen
An articulating screen is a camera screen which can be repositioned. The screen is not fixed and as a result of that it can move in different directions. The Sony a7 camera has an articulating screen while the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a fixed screen.
An articulated screen holds a lot of advantage over the fixed screen. One of the advantages is that it allows photographers to shoot photos from a waist level position.
Another benefit of the articulating screen is the fact that the articulating screen comes in handy in selfie situations. These are situations that warrant the screen facing the users when shooting.
9. Near Field Communication Connection
Near Field Communication (NFC) connection refers to the technology that is used to transfer files from one device to another by simply placing them within close range of one another.
NFC connection is also a cordless form of transfer medium. It is at best an alternative to the in built wireless connection as it is not as strong as it.
Nevertheless, its presence on the camera is still a blessing as it comes in handy when the photographer does not have access to internet connection (a major prerequisite to use wireless medium of transfer).
10. Smartphone Remote Control
The Sony a7 camera is compatible with smartphones while the Canon 5D Mark III isn’t. These smartphones can be used to control, navigate and as well frame or shoot pictures. Smartphone remote control is included on cameras to make photography more comfortable for the users.
To achieve the control of the camera with the smartphones, the user needs to ensure that the two devices are connected over the same network connection.
This and the presence of the camera app on the smartphone makes it possible for the photographer to effectively control the camera with the smartphone.
The Sony a7 camera has an electronic viewfinder while the Canon 5D Mark III camera has an optical viewfinder.
The optical and the electronic viewfinders offer different benefits. When framing with a camera that has electronic viewfinder, the photographer gets to see exactly what the sensor of the camera is viewing. Optical viewfinders, on the other hand, show images the way they actually are.
A Canon 5D Mark III Demonstration Video — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Unique Pros — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Pros of the Sony a7 — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
- This camera has 117 focus points which makes it easy to get clear and precise pictures of different subjects.
- The Sony a7 has an in-built wireless feature (which is absent in the Canon 5D Mark III) which helps achieve seamless transfer of files.
- With a sensor resolution of 24 megapixels, the photographer gets to use larger prints without distorting the quality of the image.
- The Sony a7 is more compact and lightweight than the Canon 5D Mark III. This makes it easier to move around with the camera
- The Sony a7 camera has the better dynamic range of the two cameras. This makes it easy to obtain cool pictures.
- The Sony a7 camera has a tilting screen. This helps the user capture images in ‘unnatural’ positions.
- The Sony a7 camera has the Near Field Communication connection. This serves as an alternative source of file transfer for the photographer.
- The Sony a7 camera has the smartphone control feature. This helps to operate the camera with much flexibility.
- The Sony a7 camera has USB charging. That is, it can be charged using its USB port. Also, the Sony a7 camera offers faster clearing as a result of its compatibility with UHS-I SD cards.
- The Sony a7, unlike the Canon 5D Mark III, can work with non-native lenses. The photographer just needs to get adapters and they are good to go.
- Finally, the Sony a7 camera offers better image quality than the Canon 5D Mark III as it scores higher than it in terms of DxO overall rating.
Pros of the Canon 5D Mark III — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
- Firstly, this camera has a top LCD display which helps to view settings easily while framing.
- The Canon 5D Mark III has a faster continuous shooting rate than the Sony a7 camera.
- Also, the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a lasting battery. The camera offers a battery life of 950 shots.
- Furthermore, the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a flash synchronization port that allows the photographer connect an off camera flash.
- ln addition, the Canon 5D Mark III camera has 2 storage slots.
- The Canon 5D Mark III camera also has a bigger sensor pixel area than the Sony a7. This compliments the sensor resolution of the camera to ensure that the camera gives good image quality.
- Also, the Canon 5D Mark III has more lenses available to it than the Sony a7 camera. It has 271 lenses while the Sony a7 camera has just 102 lenses.
- Furthermore, the Canon 5D Mark III dwarfs the Sony a7 in the aspect of stabilized lenses. Canon 5D Mark III has 65 optically stabilized lenses while the Sony a7 just has 23 of such lenses. Considering the fact that the two cameras do not have image stabilization, these lenses are a life safer for the photographer.
- The Canon 5D Mark III also has autofocus at f/8 aperture. This makes it possible to use autofocus with tele converters.
- The Canon 5D Mark III camera also offers more cross type focus points than the Sony a7 camera. It has 41 cross type focus points while the Sony a7 has 25 such points.
- Finally, the Canon 5D Mark III camera has a larger screen than the Sony a7. This helps to review images better.
Unique Cons — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Cons of the Sony a7 — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
- The Sony a7 camera does not have a pc synchronization socket.
- In addition, the Sony a7 camera does not have an external battery charger.
- The Sony a7 has a limited number of stabilized lenses when compared with that of the Canon 5D Mark III.
- Finally, the Sony a7 camera has a lower battery life in comparison with that of the Canon 5D Mark III.
Cons of the Canon 5D Mark III — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
- Firstly, the Canon 5D Mark III camera is expensive. There are a good number of cameras that offer same features at a lesser price.
- The Canon 5D Mark III camera also has a slow focus in live view and video modes.
- This camera lacks an in built wireless.
- The camera also has no articulated screen. It has a fixed screen that is limited in movement.
- The Canon 5D Mark III camera also has no movie crop mode. This can sometimes affect the final quality of images.
- The camera also has no Near Field Communication connection.
- Furthermore, the Canon 5D Mark III has an inferior number of focus points vs the Sony a7.
- Finally, the Canon 5D Mark III camera lacks a smartphone remote control feature.
Common Pros — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|External Flash Shoe||This helps to illuminate subjects that are located more than 10 metres away from the camera in terrible light conditions.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Face Detection||This helps to pick out human faces easily in crowded environments.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Weather Sealing||The camera is protected against tough environmental conditions.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|RAW Support||This ensures that photographers record all of the data from the sensor which ensures high quality photos.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Headphone Port||This helps to improve the audio quality of videos recorded using the camera as it helps the photographer to effectively evaluate the sound recorded.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|LCD Screen Size||The camera has a screen that is 3” in size. This helps to better view images.||Same as the Sony a7. The only difference is that the Canon 5D Mark III has a LCD screen size of 3.2”.|
|Sensor Resolution||The camera has a sensor resolution of 24 megapixels which makes it easier for photographers to obtain quality images.||Same as the Sony a7. The only difference is that the Canon 5D Mark III has 22 megapixels sensor resolution.|
|Shutter Speed||The camera is blessed with a good shutter speed rating of 1/8000 seconds.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Viewfinder||The Sony a7 camera has an electronic viewfinder. This makes it easier for photographers to frame.||Same as the Sony a7. The only difference is that the Canon 5D Mark III camera has an optical viewfinder.|
|Auto Exposure Bracketing||This helps select the right light exposure to work while taking different pictures with varying exposure levels.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Microphone Port||The microphone helps the photographer shoot videos with top quality.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Dual axis electronic level||This helps to balance the camera or recalibrate the camera in a bid to obtaining better image quality as it helps to focus on images with ease.||Same as the Sony a7.|
Common Cons — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|Touch Screen||The Sony a7 does not have a touch sensitive screen. This feature makes it possible for the photographer to zoom pictures and navigate through settings quickly.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Built in Flash||The Sony a7 camera does not have an inbuilt flash. In built flash serves the primary purpose of controlling the rate of exposure of the camera.||Same as the Sony a7.|
|Image Stabilization||The Sony a7 lacks in body image stabilization. This gives rise to the possibility of having blurry pictures. The only way to battle or reduce the occurrence of such blurry pictures is the use of optically stabilized lenses. Sony a7 has 23 optically stabilized lenses.||Same as the Sony a7. The only difference is that the Canon 5D Mark III camera has 65 optically stabilized lenses.|
What People Think About Both — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|The Sony a7 has actually received good reviews from users. To start with, people like the fact that the Sony a7 has an articulating screen. They love that they can use this camera to conveniently frame in a crowded place using this feature. Secondly, some photographers also love the fact that the camera has good autofocus options. They say it helps them to take pictures with higher precision. A good number of the users love the fact that the camera is of medium weight. This, they say, makes it easy to carry the camera around. Finally, some users are impressed with the camera’s 1920 x 1080 video resolution and a frame rate of 60fps. They say this helps them make quality videos.||The Canon 5D Mark III actually has also gotten good reviews by users. To start with, many photographers actually like the fact that the camera has a good battery life. They love that they can capture so many pictures with one charge of the battery. A good number of the users love the ISO ratings of the camera. They love that they can use this camera conveniently in any light condition. Some people also pointed out that they like the overall image quality of the camera. Finally, some people like the fact that the camera has more storage options. They said it helps to give them peace of mind when they are doing volume shooting.|
|The major shortcoming of the Sony a7 which does not sit well with the users is the fact that the camera has a poor battery life. They lament that they have to spend extra money buying batteries in a bid to meet their target.||The major complaint that photographers have concerning the Canon 5D Mark III is the fact that the camera is expensive. They can’t also seem to understand how such a camera will not have wireless connection.|
Our Take — Sony a7 Vs Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III
|We consider this camera a decent pro mirrorless camera for photographers of different levels of expertise. The camera has some interesting features that caught our eyes. First is its impressive 24-megapixel sensor resolution that helps the photographer obtain quality images with ease. The camera also has good ratings in terms of areas that are important in photography (high and low ISO and shutter speed). These features contributed to the quality performance of this camera in different light conditions. The different media of file transfer available on this camera is also worthy of mention. This makes it easy to get one’s work to the final consumers (customers). This Sony a7 is our preferred choice for portrait, street, landscape and daily photography.||The Canon 5D Mark III is also a good Semi-pro level camera for photographers. First off, we like the fact that this camera also boasts a good sensor resolution. Its 22-megapixel shows that the camera can be used to capture or shoot quality images. Secondly, we like the fact that the Canon 5D Mark III has a wide range of lenses. The camera also has a good number of optically stabilized lenses. This helps to ensure that the photographer obtains quality images. Finally, we love the fact that the camera has a top LCD screen, we feel this helps to keep the photographer focused while framing. To this end, the Canon 5D Mark III is our preferred choice for sports photography.|
|There are some shortcomings concerning the Canon 5D Mark III which have been properly discussed in the weakness section. However, if you feel you can live with the shortcomings of the camera., get the Sony a7 now!||There are some shortcomings concerning the Canon 5D Mark III which have been properly discussed in the weakness section. However, if you feel you can live with the shortcomings of the camera, get the Canon 5D Mark III now!|