New Workshop! Lighting 3 | Advanced Off Camera Flash

Gear & Apps

Canon 5Ds: Peter Hurley Reviews the Highly Anticipated Camera

By Hanssie on April 9th 2015

As some of you in the photography community anxiously await Canon’s latest offering in the 5DS and 5DsR (and others are just yawning with their new Fuji kit – oh wait, that’s me), a few lucky individuals have had a chance to take the yet-to-be-released camera out on a spin. There are only two 5DS‘s floating around out in the US at the moment and Peter Hurley got a chance to get his hands on this camera for a few photo shoots.


Peter Hurley is well known in the industry and is one of the most successful headshot photographers out there. As a former model, Peter understands what it’s like on the other side of the camera and is known for his helpful techniques such as the “squinch” and the importance of the jaw in a photograph. Peter spends most of his time in studio and he tested out the 5DS on two head shot sessions at his space in NYC.


So, for all the hype of this new 50 megapixel beast, how does it preform? Is it time to trade in your old 5DMII’s and III’s and clean out that savings account for new, well, everything to support these large files? In a video for Resource Magazine, Peter seems to really love the performance of the 5DS, pointing out its sharpness numerous times. He does mention, though, that for those that often find themselves shooting in low light, this may not be the camera for you. There is noticeable noise when shooting at 1600, and a lot of noise at 6400.

Check out the video below to see the images from the 5DS and Peter’s thoughts on this much anticipated camera.

Watch ‘Peter Hurley Reviews the Canon 5DS

This camera is expected to ship in June, but you can go get your pre-order in now over at B&H.

[Via Resource Magazine]

This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links, however, this does not impact accuracy or integrity of our content.

Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

Please or register to post a comment.

  1. Jacob Jexmark

    Due to the poor DR in the 5DS and 5DSr I’ll put my chin out and say that the D810/D800 is still the closest of the DSLRs to being a MF competitor. I’ve seen the D800/D8101 up against both 645z’s and Hassy H5D’s with extremely close results in comparison. And not only in pixels but in tone and dynamic range, two areas where Canon is lacking.

    For those studio photographers already in the Canon-system, this is a tremendous camera. But I hardly foresee any D8XX-shooters jumping the gun in the same numbers as Canon lost shooters to the D800 when it came.

    My biggest concern however is lenses. Canon has 0 lenses that can resolve even 24Mpix. We D800-shooters have the same dilemma. There are 0 Nikon lenses that resolves 36Mpix. The only lenses that does or come close are Carl-Zeiss Otus line-up and the Zeiss 135. Of course there will be a visible step up in detail and resolution from the 5D Mark III for example but we need new lenses that perform better to really see the benefits of 36Mp+. Give us new glass Canon and Nikon! :)

    | |
  2. David Blanchard

    OK, I’m game, what is the de-shiner he was mentioning?

    | |
  3. Ben Perrin

    Can’t wait to get my hands on this bad boy. Hurley is right about lenses being a big factor in these decisions. How many of us can justify spending so much to upgrade to MF when dslrs are starting to catch up. Are there still advantages to going MF? Absolutely, but this will be a good compromise for many.

    | |
  4. Peter Nord

    Oh no! my gear bag is incomplete; there’s no portable eyelash curler! Once again we’re reminded: the difference between good and great is in the details.

    | |
    • Hanssie

      Eyelash curlers are an essential part of anyone’s gear bag, as well as chapstick. But yes, too often we forget that there actually is a difference between good and great, and just settle for the good.

      | |
  5. Alon Teplitsky

    A very interesting review and inspiring about the new camera.
    *Very little question , Witch software the photographer used? this is not Lightroom right?

    | |
  6. Jerry Jackson

    His comments (and image samples when viewing the video at 1080p) seem to confirm my suspicion about the massive jump in megapixels. The increased resolution is wonderful but you get more noise at high ISOs than what we’ve gotten used to with the latest cameras in the 20-36mp range … and WAY more noise than cameras like the Sony A7S. I’m sure this will be a very successful camera for Canon. I just wish the noise in the shadows wasn’t so obvious at ISO 3200 and 6400.

    | |
    • adam sanford

      I’m not surprised by the high ISO noise at all. Maeda (Canon’s imaging chief) recently all but confirmed that the 5Ds models were made on 7D2 sensor fab hardware.

      But that’s not what these cameras are for. We should already have “this is a good light / tripod / studio camera” in our heads. The 5Ds rigs will not be for events, photojournalists, sports, street, wildlife, etc. — for that you need a proper FF sensor from a low light perspective, so (at least for Canon folks) those shooters should be waiting for the 5D4 or follow-up to the 1DX. Those will have lower pixel counts (guess 24-30) and have far, far better low light performance than what we see here.

      | |
    • Dave Haynie

      Well, of course it’s noisier than the A7s… pretty much every other camera is. That’s what the A7s is for, as long as 12Mpixels does it for you. At some point, you’re dealing with physics as much as technology.

      On the other hand, I’m not sure this is any noisier than my old 60D was, possibly even less, and certainly at most viewing means just the increased resolution would hide much of the noise. I wouldn’t be surprised if these work pretty much anywhere a 7D or other APS camera would work.

      | |
    • Duy-Khang Hoang

      Canon specifically targeted this camera as a studio/landscape shooter where high ISO is not important. If they merely scaled up the 7D2 sensor to full frame, the high ISO would be better than what it is, instead they focused on improving colour at the expense of high ISO by utilising a CFA that does not let through as much light as the competition, but that should in theory be better at colour separation. There are many people who incorrectly attribute the colour of their older CCD cameras as being better than the colour coming out of their newer CMOS sensors without realising that the change in colour had nothing to do with the silicon capturing the photos, but instead was a result of weaker colour filter arrays to improve high ISO performance. Look at the A7s, it has class leading high ISO, but does so at the expense of low ISO colour depth. Everything is a tradeoff, and while I am not a Canon shooter, I find their decision to focus on the low ISO performance of this camera to be a good choice. Afterall, they are not discontinuing the 5D line, merely adding a high res, low ISO option. The 5d mk IV would be the one to watch to push the high ISO game forward a little.

      | |
  7. Dave Haynie

    Pretty interesting to hear this positively reviewed by an MF guy. Nothing I need anytime soon, but it’s always good to keep tabs it.

    | |
  8. Daniel Thullen

    Ok Hanssie, we all know you are a traitor. Enough already! I’m just kidding there. Congrats on how the Fuji is working out for you. Peter Hurley is certainly a master at portraiture. It’s great to hear his thoughts on the new Canon. It sounds like for studio it would be ideal for a Canon shooter. (Unfortunately for me, I’m a sports/action low light kind of guy.) Your point about making sure your resources can support the generation of the massive files is a good one. It is not just the purchase of a camera body to consider. Great observations, as always.

    | |