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Canon 5D Mark IV | This is It, Finally

By Kishore Sawh on August 24th 2016

So this is it; it’s finally here to clear up the speculation and put to bed the inaccuracies. I say that because this impending release has been grabbing blog copy and forum fodder for weeks, like a ghost that hangs around but never reveals itself. But here it is. Finally.

It’s hard to imagine a single Canon camera more anticipated than a new 5D, and this one maybe more so than the last because of Nikon’s comparatively big releases with the D500 and D5, and the leak about the 5D Mark IV with that one particular sticking point and marketing magic-soundbite: that Dual Pixel Raw (more on that further on). There’s much to say about the camera that’s in many ways a re-structuring from top to bottom, inside and out, but perhaps we’ll get into all of that in later discussion, and more when we get our hands on one to review in the very near future. So for now here’s the Cliff Notes…



The Canon 5D Mark IV is, though familiar in look and controls, a new animal. It has a new sensor, improved AF and metering sensors like the 150,000 pixel RGB+IR sensor that allows for better subject recognition and tracking; new processor; a built-in GPS receiver for latitude, longitude, and elevation; built-in WiFi and NFC connectivity, and all enclosed in a familiar but better sealed body. It’s an all ‘round update. Oh, and it also does 4k at 30FPS, has a 7FPS max shooting mode, touch screen, Dual Pixel CMOS AF, and the brand new party trick, Dual Pixel Raw. That is, the 5D Mark IV on the half shell.


30.4MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
DIGIC 6+ Image Processor
3.2″ 1.62m-Dot Touchscreen LCD Monitor
DCI 4K Video at 30 fps; 8.8MP Still Grab
61-Point High-Density Reticular AF
Native ISO 32000, Expanded to ISO 102400
Dual Pixel RAW; AF Area Select Button
Dual Pixel CMOS AF and Movie Servo AF
7 fps Shooting; CF & SD Card Slots
Built-In GPS and Wi-Fi with NFC



Before we go further, it’s probably sensible to address the elephant in the room, and what it actually does. Canon introduced their first dual pixel anything a little while ago, with 3 current cameras engaging the technology in some fashion of Dual Pixel AF. In this manner, each pixel is made of two different photodiodes that can capture light independently of the other. Each detects the signal separately, which allows them to be combined and used together. When the image is shot they output the signal as a single pixel. The variance between the two signals is calculated and that drives how much the lens moves. This, as we know now, is not how the new dual pixel raw functions.

Dual Pixel Raw, is much like we deduced last week, except more, and less. It does allow for some level of adjustment of the plane of sharpness and focus as speculated, though not to the degree many were suggesting. In the video below you can get a quick glimpse at how it works and to what extent. It isn’t going to bring an image back from complete disaster, but it’s easy to see what a savior this could be when you nail that one perfect shot, just a little imperfectly – this could save it. This will require testing of the software to see to what extent the functionality exists.



However, Dual Pixel Raw on the 5D IV does more than that as it serves 3 adjustment functions: Image Micro-adjustment after shooting, Bokeh Shift, and Ghosting Reduction. Image micro adjustment is as described above; bokeh shift seems to allow some manner of defocus control, and Ghosting Reduction is self-explanatory. The thing to keep in mind though, is that in order to actually do any of this requires the use of the Dual Pixel Raw Optimizer found in the Digital Photo Professional Software v4.5, which does come with the camera, but you won’t be able to do these corrections inside the more prominent software at this point.

[REWIND: New! Ultimate Panoramic Stitching (Brenizer Method) Workshop]



And the price for all this? $3,499 for the body, with two kit options: a) paired with an EF 24-70mm f/4L, for $4,399 b) with an EF 24-105mm f/4L IS Ii USM for $4,599. And if you want the battery grip, that’s $349.

Now, Canon is also introducing 2 new lenses:

Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM,

EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II USM

More on those and the 5D Mark IV to come. You can order a 5D Mark IV now if you want to ensure you get one on time, by following this link.

There are a few videos below you can see a bit more of the 5D MK IV.

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Ralph Hightower

    Last weekend of May 2016, a friend asked me about what the difference was between the 5D II and the III, and also about upgrading from the 5D II to the 5D III, which I own. I said that I didn’t know the II, so I couldn’t say what was improved, but that he probably should hold off on upgrading since there were rumors about a 5D upgrade. If I didn’t own the III, I’d buy the IV for the improvements, major and minor. The 5D III is my first DSLR, so I don’t know when I’ll upgrade.

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  2. Bob Baker

    Rave reviews?

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  3. William Graves

    How quickly does Adobe usually release support for new cameras in Lightroom? Would Lightroom even be able to process images off the Mark IV upon release?

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    • adam sanford

      There’s a short lag in which you have to use Canon’s DPP software at first, but the lag for flagship releases like this is usually less than a month if memory serves.

      For early adopters who just want to perform inane testing stunts on the sensor (push shadows 5 stops, all that nonsense), they don’t care about the lack of software creature comforts.

      But I wouldn’t go shooting a wedding with it anytime soon — you might have to sit on the files for a few weeks!

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    • William Graves

      Thanks for the info! Have a few weddings in October I hope to use it for, but I don’t want to be waiting too long to begin editing.

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    • adam sanford

      I know some folks that actually refrain from pre-ordering until they know the camera is Lightroom / ACR-ready. the risk is there might be a backlog of orders and you might be a bit delayed.

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    • William Graves

      I’ve got mine ordered to replace my 6D. Hopefully Adobe doesn’t drag their feet. I’m going to Yosemite in late September, so I guess I’ll take the MkIV and just sit on the files for a bit if I have to.

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  4. adam sanford

    It’s finally here and it’s a formidable upgrade for Canon’s do-everything / jack of all trades professional rig.

    I’m sitting on my perfectly capable 5D3 this cycle unless the on-chip ADC + dual pixel RAW melts faces with its performance. Here’s hoping, though.

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  5. Masrur Mahmood

    I personally feel that for still photography, this is a camera to beat at the moment… with improved DR + Dual Pixel Raw… I will definitely upgrade from 70D to a full frame 5D Mark IV

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    • Dave Lyons

      from what i understand the Dual pixel Raw is like adding or subtraction +1 or -1 in af fine tuning. Thats not much or worth it to me to double the raw size or save many pix

      As far as it being “the one to beat”, of course we don’t know yet but I’m pretty sure it’s competitors are still out front.

      From the “sigh” hear around the world, it seems like this isn’t even close to the update everyone was banking on

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  6. Simon Johannssen

    From all the blog reports and first videos I saw, maybe the 5Dmk4 is an amazing DSLR, maybe the best, for photographers including video into their daily work. For me, since I’m just shooting stills, it seems more like a 5D Mark III Mark 2, just like an upgrade to the Mark III with much more megapixels. I think this camera is awesome and will be the new main body for soooo many professionals, but for me as a Nikon guy, I think the D810 in comparison is still the better DSLR for my usage. But I’m really excited to watch the first real world or field reviews of the 5Dmk4. Great article as always Kishore!

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    • adam sanford

      That’s *exactly* what they said when the 5D3 dropped — it’s a 5D2 Mark II with a headphone jack.

      Of course, time has proven the 5D3 as being both a legendary seller and an extraordinarily popular camera. The 1DX AF and silent shutter were the killer features that did that. This time around, either the metering/tracking or Dual Pixel RAW options will likely be what elates people.

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    • Kishore Sawh

      They’ve lost the plot for video though. Utterly.

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    • adam sanford

      I don’t shoot video, but a deafening roar about a 1.74x crop can be heard from many internets away this morning. It was as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.

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    • Dave Lyons

      they’ve been so focused on video things lately that I’m a bit suprised

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    • Dave Lyons

      I think you’ll have to wait 4-5 years for the next one to get a useable Dual pixel as +1 to -1
      in af fine tuning just isn’t going to save a lot of pix, plus it doubles file size and they didn’t exactly go the right route for that in choice of cards.

      I’m more interested in noise… are the yellows, oranges, blues still god awfully wrong and did they take their hand off the red saturation adjustment? no af point spot metering? (deal killer) and possible an epic mistake with choice of cards.

      No doubt its a great camera… if it was a lot less money. Feels like sony’s sales are about to jump.

      personally, i like the pictures of the 6d better. i left canon long ago but honestly i’m quite shocked at this. The dr and shadow details better be mind blowing.

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  7. Burak Tosun

    Will this mean that the 5Dmk3 will be cheaper?

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  8. elvin tarverdiyev

    perfect new camera

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  9. fotosiamo

    Hahaha, Canon pretty much just gave up on video makers with the Canon 5D. 4K mjpeg, really? No LOG, no waveform, no false color, no peaking, no articulated screen, 1.7x crop for 4k (no such things as Speedboosters for DSLRs), 8-bit 420 , no 60fps 4K, no 120fps Full HD, and the HDMI only outputs 1080p!

    Pretty pathetic on the video side.

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    • Reginald Walton

      I really don’t think their first priority for the 5D was for film makers. The film makers just happen to get lucky with the 5D and it being a great camera for video. So for the film makers, if you’re not happy, buy a true video camera. :)

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    • Andrew Nease

      Which is all good and well, but they sold tens of thousands of 5D2 and 5D3 units based on the video capabilities of the cameras. They will not be selling very many of these for video. They officially decided they don’t want to support an entire subset of their user base in order to try to sell C100s and C300s. This leaves those of us who extensively use our cameras for both stills and video, and don’t want to have to lug two cameras around with only one real option: switch brands.

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    • Justin Haugen

      It takes a rental of an actual dedicated video camera to see what we’re really missing from our still cameras that dabble in video.

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  10. Jason Brown

    Oooooh I want one !

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  11. Ronnie Chan

    It is kinda disappointing on the 4k at 1.74 crop .sigh….

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  12. Ben Perrin

    That dual pixel focusing looks like a great feature. Very handy for shallow DOF portraits.

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    • adam sanford

      There are two pieces to the tech here.

      1) DPAF has been around since the 70D — thats LiveView AF by touch for stills and video. It’s wonderful.

      2) What’s new with this is Dual-Pixel *RAW*, which is each of those dual photosites that were pulling data for AF are now (as I understand it) recording image information — that is opening the door to improve focus corrections and chromatic corrections in post, as well as dabble with a watered-down / minor Lytro-like DOF shift.

      Besides the new sensor itself, dual pixel RAW is the new hotness for stills shooters, and I’m excited to see what it can do.

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    • Ben Perrin

      It’s not just that. This could be fantastic for landscape images. It would allow a photographer to shoot at the sweet spot of a given lens (possibly f8 or so) then focus stack the result to get a greater depth of field without any focus breathing. That is actually amazing! I can’t believe more people aren’t commenting on how good this feature could be.

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    • adam sanford

      I’ve thought of ‘one shot photo stacking’ but I’m not convinced we’ll be able to make entire shots in one. Like I don’t think a lens with an f/5.6 sweet spot can be stretched to cover a broad f/14-needed DOF landscape…

      …but hell yeah, I’d sure like to try that.

      Surely (even with a small range of allowable adjustment) you’d be able to do ‘traditional’ macro focus stacking with fewer shots. Studio product folks would probably love that.

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