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Canon 5DSR vs Canon D2000 | Comparing Pro DSLRs 17 Years Apart

By Kishore Sawh on November 9th 2015

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Exponential growth is sort of what it seems the camera industry is going through currently. Actually, it can seem sometimes that the available tech is growing at a rate even faster than Moore’s Law, even if it doesn’t reach consumer hands as quickly. However, when we test cameras today and particularly when comparing them to their own contemporaries in terms of form factor, cost, and so forth, it is arguable that the abilities of each are rather in line with each other, and we dive really deep in to pixel peeping and measuring their abilities less on how the average image it captures turns out, but by numbers on a spec sheet.

This, I believe, isn’t always the best way to go about it and I can pretty much guarantee you that in most circumstances, you couldn’t tell the difference between a shot taken with a 5DSR or D810 or a7RII. But it is what it is, and we are all looking for details. Those details, however, need not apply when comparing cameras from what we can call different eras of digital photography, because the differences are blaring.

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The first digital SLR I spent a good amount of time with was a Nikon D70 in the latter part of 2006. I took it to Virginia to document the final airshow and operations of the US Navy’s F-14 Tomcats, and to be honest, I made a bit of a hash of it. I was not used to how DSLRs handled any sort of heavy lifting, and having come from film and developing myself, I didn’t know if there would be defining characteristics and qualities of the digital rendering as you would get from particular film types. I also remember the Powerbook I brought didn’t even support the RAW format.

[REWIND: Canon 5DS & 5DSR | A Look At The New Megapixel Monsters In Action]

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Product of D70

Anyway, looking at those old files now, it’s incredible to see how far we’ve come, and in an even more exaggerated example, photographer Jim Goldstein has pitted a Canon 5DSR against the Canon D2000. That’s effectively taking the Hercules of today and putting it against the Hercules of a different geological era, and in terms of tech, that’s not really fair. It’s not like putting Mike Tyson in the Ring with Ali, but more like putting them in the ring and arming one with a shotgun. So let me ruin it for you now by saying the 5DSR decimates the D2000 in every way possible, spare the fact you could play PONG on the LCD of the D2000.

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That said it’s an interesting watch, and sort of makes you wonder what’s on the horizon for us now, and how much further we can go before it all changes beyond recognition. 17 years ago, the 2 megapixel 1.6x crop CCD sensored D2000 was on the throne, and today’s is occupied by a eleventy thousand megapixel full frame CMOS. Tomorrow?

P.S. – Canon still needs to work on dynamic range…

What was your first DSLR?

Source: PetaPixel

About

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. Jeremy Wallace

    So awesome to see what digital technology was like 17 years ago! Found a Canon D60 around the office and it was fun to play around with it, for nostalgia sake.

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  2. Colin Woods

    D70 for me, it took great pictures as long as you kept to 200 ISO. I have nice A3 prints from that camera. Of course its smoked completely by the D750 but the D70 was pretty amazing for its time.

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  3. Jeremy Adams

    My first DSLR was my Canon 60D…and it’s still my only DSLR. I figure I’ll eventually upgrade but if I wait a few more years I might just be able to jump to mirorless.

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