Canon EOS 6D Hands-ON — Canon Giveth, Canon Taketh Away

Canon EOS 6DIt seems our exploratory swim in the waters of full-frame DSLRs is far from complete. With the ink from his recent reviews of the D600 and the mirrorless Panasonic GH3 still drying, I asked my homie Ben Pitt to put the Canon EOS 6D between his microscope plates and share his findings here. As you’d expect with a lower-priced semi-pro camera, the EOS 6D is a mixed-bag. It’s light and boasts integrated GPS + Wi-Fi, but a couple notable omissions are enough to yank this camera from the “obvious choice” list. Scrutinizing consumers have come to expect a catch with the $2,000 price point products. Does the EOS 6D have a big one? I’ll let Ben take it from here. – Chase

A year ago, a full-frame camera meant a professional camera. They were simply too expensive for the majority of amateur photography enthusiasts. But with the Nikon D600 and Canon EOS 6D, the landscape has changed.

Last month I wrote about the Nikon D600, and whether the inevitable compromises it makes compared to the pricier D800 are worth living with. I concluded that – for me at least – they were. Given the choice of a D800 or a D600 plus an extra $800 to spend on glass (or more realistically, household bills), I’d happily go for the latter.

This month, it’s time to ask the same question about the Canon EOS 6D.

There are no nasty surprises regarding image quality. The 6D’s 20-megapixel full-frame sensor is new, but quality is hard to distinguish from the EOS 5D Mark III’s 22.3-megapixel output. Details are marginally lower, but so too are noise levels. Incidentally, detail and noise levels are very similar to the D600, too. Canon and Nikon each has its distinctive colour processing but there’s nothing much to separate these three cameras’ image quality on an objective basis.

1/320s, f/5.6, ISO 400, 400mm (click to enlarge)

1/60s, f/5, ISO 100, 32mm

1/125s, f/2.2, ISO 320, 50mm (click to enlarge)

1/200s, f/2.2, ISO 12800, 50mm (click to enlarge)

Their video modes are more varied. The 6D’s videos lag a little behind the D600’s for detail levels, and it lacks a headphone out to monitor the microphone input. However, unlike the D600, its aperture setting can be adjusted while recording. Overall, I’d class that as a draw, but both come a distant second to the Panasonic GH3 for video.

As with the D600, the 6D takes its design cues from a cropped-sensor sibling – in this case, the EOS 60D. The 6D is only fractionally larger and heavier than the 60D, although the lack of an integrated flash and articulated screen possibly account for the minimal weight gain. The layout of buttons is very similar, with a generous number of single-function buttons but a few less than on the 5D Mark III. It’s great to have the AF-ON button included – something Nikon chose to omit from the D600. The lack of direct access to white balance settings is disappointing, though.

Some people will lament the single SDXC slot, which compares unfavourably to the D600’s dual SDXC and the 5D Mark III’s SDXC and CompactFlash slots. I can live with a single slot, but it seems that this particular one hampers performance. Testing with an SDHC card rated at 94MB/s, burst mode set off at 4.2fps but slowed to 2.3fps after 26 frames. When I tested the 5D Mark III (which uses the same DIGIC 5+ processor), I found that the 6fps burst rate lasted indefinitely with a 90MB/s CompactFlash card but slowed to 2fps after 28 shots with a 94MB/s SDHC card.

Still, 4.2fps for 26 frames isn’t so bad. If you’re looking for a fast camera for sports or wildlife photography, you should be more wary of the 6D’s autofocus sensor.

As with the Nikon D600, its points are bunched towards the centre of the frame – it’s as if Canon has taken an APS-C SLR’s autofocus sensor and plonked it into a full-frame camera. But whereas the D600 has 39 AF points, nine of which are cross-type, the 6D has a much simpler 11-point autofocus with just a single cross-type point in the centre. That rules out the automatic subject tracking that’s available in the D600 and 5D Mark III – there simply aren’t enough AF points to track moving subjects. It’s also a pretty big drawback for portrait work, where you want to be able to focus on the eye without having to focus and recompose the shot. Then again, the 5D Mark II had a nine-point autofocus system, and it sold by the bucket load.

So far, the D600 is coming out on top for features, but the 6D’s trump card is integrated Wi-Fi and GPS. GPS worked without a hitch in my tests. The GPS radio stays on when the camera is switched off, so it needn’t spend ages recalculating its position when you want to take a photo. An icon on the passive LCD screen reminds you to switch it off (via the menu) at the end of the day – shame there’s no hardware switch.

The Wi-Fi implementation is one of the most sophisticated I’ve seen. With the help of the EOS Remote app for iOS and Android, the camera can be remotely controlled from a smartphone or tablet, complete with live view, touchscreen control over the autofocus point and full access to exposure settings. Image browsing is well catered for too, with responsive full-screen previews, detailed EXIF data and the ability to apply star ratings. There’s no option to transfer photos to the app at the full 20-megapixel resolution, though.

The EOS Remote app running on an iPad

The 6D also supports wireless tethering to a PC or Mac, which worked flawlessly once I’d jumped through various hoops to set it up. There are various other features, such as uploads to Facebook and YouTube over a local network and the ability to stream slideshows to a Smart TV via DLNA.

Overall, the EOS 6D is a heady mix. Image quality is outstanding. Video capture has its limitations but picture quality is certainly flattering. Its controls and performance are decent enough, the autofocus is disappointing and the wireless features are spot on. That might sound like a fair compromise considering the breakthrough price, but it’s very much a case of taking the rough with the smooth. To me, the D600 feels more balanced.

As ever, we’d love to hear your thoughts. Are 11 autofocus points enough, or has Canon misjudged its market here? Bear in mind that Canon wants the 6D to appeal to people who are ready to move up from a cropped-sensor SLR – it’s not designed for potential 5D Mark III owners who are looking to save some cash. Are the Wi-Fi and GPS must-have features, tempting extras or a waste of space? And putting any allegiances to one side, which company do you feel has made the best cut-price full-frame camera?

88 Responses to Canon EOS 6D Hands-ON — Canon Giveth, Canon Taketh Away

  1. Rui Cruz February 18, 2013 at 9:55 am #

    The one thing that kills this camera for me, is the SD card slot… what the hell? This would be a perfect 2nd camera, and without it it’s pointless.

    I have a 5DMkII, so the focus thing already annoys me currently, so no big fuss about that, I’d kill to have wifi on my 5D.

    Mixed bag, but not having CF cards just blows this out of the water.

    • brad February 18, 2013 at 7:46 pm #

      SD cards are almost $1 a gigabyte now, how can a camera be completely pointless because you’re not willing to spend $40 on a 32GB SD card?!

      many people will be moving to a 6D from other SD card cameras, so it’s entirely logical that it doesn’t use CF.

      • Scott February 19, 2013 at 5:13 am #

        +1 on the above comment.

        I shoot exclusively with high speed SD cards on my 7D.

        — wait,wha? That’s right. I’m using the Extreme CF/SD Adapter (v3) and Sandisk 45mb/s or 95mb/s cards. Works flawlessly for video and not too shabby for photo. I get the occasional hiccup, but otherwise the convenience outsells the high cost of high-speed CF cards, as well as the need for seperate card readers, when most laptops have an SDHC slot these days.

        I have a USB3.0 card reader when I’m in a rush, but again, extra peripherals when I need to be mobile. My other video cameras all shoot SD, so it’s a nice convenience (again) to be able to share flash memory between them.

        I see this as a plus, whereas the lack of headphone, and other video features that they easily could have added (and KNEW that people wanted) was an epic fail on their part.

        Canon, Y U HATE US SO?

        • Mark March 10, 2013 at 11:45 pm #

          +1 to both above comments.
          Lack of CF is absolutely no problem for me. But again am moving from an entry level camera 550D so I would not notice. All my SD cards are 32GB and over 42mb/s. I will be OK with the auto-focus system as well as i don’t particular shot and sports. Mostly landscapes, portraits etc. Having wifi for me is a huge. So many possibilities by operating it through the app. At the moment the Canon app seem pretty basic but am sure they are gonna add lot more on it in the future.

  2. David Cuerpo February 18, 2013 at 10:07 am #

    The 11 AF points with only 1 cross-type are a disappointment, especially compared to the D600. The 7D is a 4 year old camera, yet boasts a superior AF system, what prevented them from adopting this into the 6D? Is it because it’d be too close in performance with the 5D mk3?

  3. Tuffer February 18, 2013 at 10:08 am #

    and 1/160th flash sync gives me so much less control over the environmental lights for editorial portrait work. So much so that it may be the sole reason I don’t get it (though that AF system compared to my 7d doesn’t help either).

  4. Zag Zaee February 18, 2013 at 10:17 am #

    The SD slot is the big give away that it’s intended for people stepping up from rebels, and not as a second body / alternative for 5d owners.

    Personally, I’d rather see the Wifi / GPS removed and the price reduced, since they are useless gimmicks in my mind.

  5. tetsu February 18, 2013 at 10:32 am #

    I´ve been testing it for a while and it´s a great camera. Im sad by the canon dieet on the features, specially versus the Nikon D600 (two sd card slots, flash and a better autofocus system). Compared to my Canon 5D III the only thing I miss is the autofocus and the better solid build.

    One stellar point of the 6D is the integrated wi-fi and the apps for iOS / Android are a joy to use! compared the Eye-Fi seems a fad.

    It´s a great camera at a great price point, but i thing canon cut too much in the features in order to keep it under the 5D III.

    • bill June 7, 2013 at 12:42 pm #

      I have a 50D and its been a great camera. moving up to a d600 I loved the camera but the oil spots.. dust.. was something that spooked me into looking around more. I cant see the D800 and 5d mark iii. due to the price range. btw im not a pro just hobby and now doing some study to improve. I been playing around for years. 35mm days. Im looking at the 6D but thinking i should have stayed with the D600 hoping they will get this dust problem fixed. GPS not for me, WiFi is nice for android. after shooting a few thousand shots with the d600 my 50d just doesn’t do it :)
      Im open to any comments and input on which would be better for me. due to you pros out there know far more than I.

  6. Alex February 18, 2013 at 10:33 am #

    To be honest, the whole thing looks extremely unbalanced. As if they needed to hurry up, stick some apsc and ff together. But take the cheapest parts of either…
    The af would annoy me. I would not need 11 points. 3 crosstype-ones would be enough, if they were positioned right…

  7. Ryan February 18, 2013 at 10:38 am #

    I bought the 6D right after it came out. I was long over due for a body upgrade and thought the extra $1000+ was just not worth it for the 5DIII (for what I do anyway). I knew the downsides to it and even considered the D600 since I’m no hardcore fanboy but decided switching over would end up costing more with new lens/flash/accessory investments.

    The few things I was hesitant about (because everything else was amazing) was the 1 card slot and autofocus. Now, my older body had one card slot and I never had a problem so I decided if the D600 had not had 2 slot I would have never even cared.

    The autofocus was the one serious thing I was concerned about but I started thinking. I shoot primarily weddings and portraits. Weddings can have some demands but I really believe if you think you need an autofocus system that’s capable of also shooting an F1 race than you’re at some crazy weddings. Actually the fact that the 6D system was supposedly more sensitive in the dark for weddings was a plus in my opinion. Ultimately though, I thought, they obviously have not made this camera to do what the 5DIII can in terms of autofocus either in focus points of fps. But I think the FPS if appropriate for the autofocus. It makes no sense to make a camera shoot at 5-10fps, but not be able to track anything that fast.

    I think the 5DII made a huge impact in the photographic world, and was essentially the go-to for many pro’s. The 6D is much better. Wifi and GPS seemed like a gimmick to me at first, but after uploading a handful of photos during a wedding and sending a photo of the father/daughter dance to the father right after they danced my mind was changed. It can make a huge impact on clients during a wedding.

    It is a great camera, not the best, but it’s not supposed to be. It would be nice if it had better autofocus or 2 card slots but we all know Canon/Nikon are always playing hop-scotch and I am glad Nikon went the extra mile because it will keep Canon trying to get better in turn.

  8. Leroy Walker Jr February 18, 2013 at 10:40 am #

    If they would have stuck the 7D autofocus system in it…they would have had a winner!!!

    • faisal February 19, 2013 at 6:18 am #

      They did not intentionally.

  9. Jonathan February 18, 2013 at 10:53 am #

    Here’s what i think what happen at Canon when making the 6D.

    Ok well we need to make a cheaper full frame to compete with the D600,
    Lets look at the 5D3

    23 megapixels- too much
    6pfs- too much
    61 AF points- wayyyy too much
    41 cross type AF points- are you mad? we shall give them “1”, yes i said “1”
    CF card slot- hey stupid we want to attract wannabe rebel photographers. keep it SDHC and keep it 1 they are cheap anyways.
    1/8000 shutter speed, lets give them 1/4000 TV so that we can charge extra for ND filters.
    Magnesium alloy body- nah its a “cheaper” full frame. lets give it plastic
    Wifi capabilities- Thats a great idea, now people will have a reason to buy this thing.

    I really don’t see a point other than the Wifi, at almost 2k for this camera, id rather just get a 5D2 instead. imo.

    • Anonymous February 28, 2013 at 10:22 pm #

      So agree 100% with you!!

    • Steveo March 6, 2013 at 10:37 am #

      Wow, it’s like you were a fly on the wall during that meeting at Canon! I’m still reading so many reviews to decide 6D/5D. If you don’t want lots of features (Rebel owners) get the 6d, if you want and use real features get the 5D.

  10. Roby Davis February 18, 2013 at 11:27 am #

    The 6D will be my next body, coming for a 5D MKII… The wifi did it for me, I shoot wedding and portraits and would love to be able to shoot directly to my computer \ ipad (via Shutter Snitch) without another $800 accessory. For $2000 I get a second 5DMKII with wifi and more sensitive autofocus. Seems like a winner.. (Canon fanboy here, kidding but seriously)

  11. Mr. T. February 18, 2013 at 12:23 pm #

    I am surprised at how many people view the 6D as a semi pro camera (which it CAN be) instead of a beginner full frame camera with some pro features.

    I think it is correct to use a xxD style AF instead of the 7D AF. The 7D AF would probably be too complicated for beginners.

    The WI-FI/GPS and low light performance makes the camera of interest to professionals. I expect to by one for remote control bird photography.

    I don’t care about the single slot card, but I would have preferred a CF card slot instead. Side note : It annoys me somewhat that my 1D4 has only one CF slot.

    • Leroy Walker Jr February 18, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

      I had the 7D for about a year and the AF is fairly simple imo. With the zone focusing and expansion settings all you have to do is point in the general directions of the subject for it to lock. I really think the the 6D doesn’t offer enough to purchase it over the mk2. The wifi is a cool feature..but that’s about it.

      • Daniel Miller March 6, 2013 at 7:38 am #

        The 6d absolutely floors the 5d mark 2 over image quality and noise performance, there is your advantage.

        • ThoamsT March 8, 2013 at 5:38 pm #

          And it doesnt have greasy dirt on the sensor aka D600, and the colrs ar emuch better says Ken Rockewll. ken should know as he conceived the world’s first dedicated digital colorspace converter chip, the TMC2272, back in 1990 when he worked at TRW LSI Products. He’s been working with the matrix math, hardware and software that does this for decades. He also coined the word “gigacolors,” for use with 36-bit and 48-bit color data. TRW LSI was a small, ultra-creative division of TRW.

          Ken is today a pro photogarpher, see his velvia 5x4s, who reviews cameras and optics that he woiuld be actually using himself, not everything that appears on the market. Some call him a moron, but tthat;s just human nature trying to belittle someone they begrudge.

          • Gotcha April 1, 2013 at 7:58 am #

            Hi, Ken!

  12. My 2cents February 18, 2013 at 1:06 pm #

    On paper Nikon always Bests Canon. Oh yeah, I am a canon user because after the film days I stopped photography eventually purchased a rebel (the first one). For video shooters, the moire issues are a deal-breaker (recommended: buy a video camera). If the 6D were billed as being a supremeo camera of the fast action, bad news. It’s difficult to oust personal bias comparing the 600/6D (from what I gather of the reviews)…I tried both. The deal-breaker was the klunkiness of the Nikon Menu System. Buttons flanking right and left, digging thru menus…

    I borrowed by friends M9 for a while…and recall 1 focus point. I don’t remember the last time using 1/8000th shutter speed either. It’s nice being able to shoot/change settings with 1 hand, and the higher ISO performance for the style of photog I do suits my purposes better.

    1 card slot=Argh, I feel the pain! WIFI=I’ll be getting into some time lapse stuff…neat (I would rather of seen a 7D like focus system…wait, give me 1 year with this wifi stuff.)

    Mic Jack? I’m still a bit confused here. It’s a photo-camera, that can do the video. In 2-3 years video quality for phone sized devices with make this sort of thing a relic. Odd, how the 6D can sync timecode, canon went schizo video-wise with the 6D.

    The initial 2100$ price vs. the 600s cheaper offering seems to have tapered off…body for 6D 1899USD…instead of all the Mac vs PC vs whatever…that after a few decades I can shoot in “FF”, (was an old Minolta+tmax shooter) finally is a good thing.

    Screw the beginner-entry level-semi amateur-amateur-entusiast-kinda-pro-semi-pro-pro-real pro BS. Same thing with music/music production/composition.

    Anyone else just-plain-happy that while our currency is worth practically zero, we can purchase real stores of value eg; lenses, pro-monitors (audio/visual)…4000USD today has lost 35% of its purchasing value post 2007ish debacle.


  13. Marty Cohen February 18, 2013 at 1:33 pm #

    I’m a serious amateur photographer and shooting video is secondary to me. I’ve been using a Canon 40D for the past 5 years and was saving to buy a Canon 5D, then continued saving for a 5D MKII, then figured I have to continue saving to get a 5D MKIII. My goals were to have a full frame sensor with higher ISO settings, better noise reduction and better AF ability. And then, the 6D was announced last September and I realized that I was very glad I had not already purchased my MKII or MKIII because the 6D was a full frame camera, with much higher ISO and superb in-camera noise reduction and a much better AF than my 40D. And equally as important to me was its wireless capabilities. I’m used to using only 1 card slot but I do have a good collection of medium to high capacity CF cards I won’t be able to use in the 6D.

    I had been searching for ways to control my DSLR remotely and also to have instant review of my images on my iPad or iPhone. I wanted to be able to attach my iPhone and iPad to my tripod for these functions. I found some outstanding clamps for this purpose and was so pleased with them, that I started an online company to sell them.

    The Canon 6D solved my problems and gave me what I wanted most in my DSLR. It also saved me over $1,000 by not having to buy a 5D MKIII. It provided me with most of the improved features I’d been looking for, and it had wireless. I was really excited to order it and I received it a couple of weeks ago and it’s met my expectations. I’m Happy!

  14. earl studios February 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm #

    I am a food photographer and filmmaker, originally a nikon shooter I switched 2 years ago because the d7000 was so disappointing for my film work I had to switch to canon. I loved the look of the full frame but the lack of 60fps in the 5dmk2 meant it wasn’t an option. so I went with the 7d instead. The autofocus was wonderful and the video great, but it still lacked that pop of DOF of a full frame camera. 4 grand for a camera is insane for a small company like mine, so when the 6d was announced I jumped on it and bought 2, trading in my 7d’s.

    Yes, it has its faults, like the God aweful moire. it has made me cry in public more than once. and the 11 focus points feels very 2005, but then I remembered who I was. I was a photographer and a filmmaker. I manually pull focus half the time, I shoot films in the dead of winter on the side of a slippery ice covered mountain…I love a challenge!

    The limits that exist in the 6d will only make me a better shooter, because it will require me to use my brain and my skill to get the picture rather than just relying on the camera.

    and the wi-fi?! holy moly! that thing is priceless! I shoot, transfer to my iphone, and post to instragram and it blows peoples minds! it makes shooting fun again…

    so yes, the 6d has its flaws, but you know what, even the hottest swimsuit model has bad breath every now and then….no bodys perfect.

  15. Girish February 18, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

    Thanks for the reivew Ben.

    I am planning to buy this camera and the helps me further to go for it. I am really not interested with the gps part of it. I really feel the GPS is a unnecessary add on. The wireless connectivity is a great option.

    Regarding the focus points am okay with the number. The ISO & low light performance is better than 5dk3 as well. It’s light weight as well.

    I’ve seen it’s performance in weddings & events where you need to super fast, and this camera doesn’t disappoint.

    I only feel the FPS could’ve been more that’s all.

  16. Mitch February 19, 2013 at 11:19 am #

    I am a landscape photographer. I started with a 5d, then the 5d MkII and now I use the 5d MkIII. My typical pattern is to sell the oldest camera body and buy the newest. Now, with a 5d MkII and a MkIII, I will probably sell the MkII and get the 6D. Here’s my reasoning. I care a lot about image quality and low light performance, I don’t shoot (much) video and I don’t do burst-mode shooting. All that speed is mostly wasted on me. I really need the custom functions badly so I can tweak my settings the way I need them. Since star trails and night photography are so much fun, I care about the ability to control the 6D with an ios app. I don’t think there’s an intervalometer yet on the iphone to control the 6D but I would be interested in one when it comes out.

    Finally, as I get a bit (ahem) older, I prefer to have less weight in my camera bag and the 6D is lighter than the 5D’s. So for me this looks like a nice step up for what I need, I will likely pick one up soon.

  17. Doug Luberts February 20, 2013 at 12:08 pm #

    Regarding the changing of aperture while shooting…I understand this is going to change with a firmware release from Nikoon. At least that was the rumor that mitigated my concerns about this feature.

    I went through all of this considerations before settling on a D600…While wireless tethering would be nice (and I’m hoping I can do that when my WiFi module for the D600 comes in), as a practical matter for remote shooting, WiFi bandwidth is just too limited, even when tethering to a mobile hotspot, to be that valuable…Especially with 6k images.

    I think Canon missed the mark on this…I would have happily switched to Canon had this camera been a bit more feature rich.

  18. Gert Kracht February 20, 2013 at 2:05 pm #

    I got my EOS 6D in january this year and I absolutely love this camera.
    At first I had to get used to use a SD card, but I immediately started using a Lexar 400x 64 GB card. Going to get a second (backup card) with it soon. Surprisingly I haven’t found anything disturbing about SD cards in all the years they exist. Only thing I don’t like is their construction: weaker then CF cards.

    The headphone connector missing is no argument too. Audio is something I always record with an external recorder (Zoom or Tascam which both have a headphone plug and line output for the camera. Much better combination and far better quality.

    I absolutely LOVE the WiFi function and GPS for my travels. With it I can make photo’s and send them online AND let people know where I am. Brilliant they built these in the camera.

    Compared with my 7D (I will KEEP it!) this camera is VERY light sensitive. So much better! And it is full frame. My first full frame, because I simply skipped the 5DmkII for not having 25p film for a long time.

    I’m convinced many people will love this camera for it’s features and who knows Canon will bring us a mkII in the near future with more features. I am VERY happy with this new camera and combined with the rest it is an absolute win!

  19. Mark McKnight February 23, 2013 at 10:15 am #

    Just recently bought myself a Canon 7D and wish I’d gone for the 6D instead. I really wanted a full frame sensor for Landscape photos but at the time the 5D Mkii was just two expensive and old. The 5D Mkiii is also really expensive for an amateur like me.

  20. Daniel Miller March 6, 2013 at 7:27 am #

    I really think people are going too much into the focus system and the 1 SD card slot. It all depends what you’re shooting, This camera is no good for photo journalism or sport, but certainly is a dream for landscape photographers, not only that you really need to check out its image quality and ISO performance, the high ISO performance is better than the 5D iii slighty and the WiFi function is amazing!! Its a wonderful camera and I love it.

  21. TEdwardE March 8, 2013 at 4:10 pm #

    Got the 6D about a month ago. I am primarily a landscape and portrait photographer, and for those uses the 6D cannot be beat. Picture quality – especially at low light/high ISO – is exceptional. The ability to bracket 2, 3, 5 or 7 shots for HDR gives a lot more creative control over the 3 exposure bracketing of most cameras. The Wi-Fi is phenomenal. The camera acts as the access point so you can use the your smart phone even in remote locations. GPS is exceptionally accurate and very handy for landscape photos. With my 50D I had to create a GPS log and sync the photos with Lightroom. This is much more accurate and NO, it does not significantly drain the battery. I can go a full day with GPS running all the time on a single battery charge. (Of course, if you’re doing GPS and a lot of live view/Wi-Fi shooting, you’d want a second battery.)

    I actually prefer the SD card over CF for two reasons: my laptop has an SD slot so no adapter is needed, and my iPad connector also takes SD cards without a separate adapter.

    For those who are considering the Nikon D600 – read all the negative reviews about sensor dust before making your purchase. It’s surprising that very few of the reviews on the D600 even mention that issue. I gave serious thought to the D600 but the sensor dust issue would drive me crazy. I have no regrets about going with the 6D.

    If you’re a sports photographer needing a high burst rate and longer telephoto range, you’d be better off with the APS-C 7D (or 7D Mark II that’s rumored for later this year). But for portrait and landscape the 6D kicks ass and takes no prisoners.

  22. Greg March 8, 2013 at 4:48 pm #

    Love my 6D! If you can’t take pics with 1 cross-type AF point, will having 100 points help you take better pictures? Geez, I bought the 6D for one thing – full frame image quality. I shoot everything even sports. Get over the griping of missing features and added-on features and just shoot.

  23. SteveO March 15, 2013 at 9:37 am #

    I bought the 6D last week to upgrade from the 50D I was used to. Of coarse it’s like night and day, the image quality is by far fantastic. I needed a good SLR for natural light photos and this produces them perfectly. I would recommend that you get the battery grip as I did, even the short zoom 24-105 is heavy and wants to nose dive the camera. You need the balance weight for sure. The wireless function with my smartphone worked without a hitch. I am glad I didn’t spend the additional $1000 on the 5D. If you are contemplating which one to get, base your decision on whether you will earn the cost back on your work. If you are not in it for earning a living then the 6D is the best choice.

  24. Anonymous March 18, 2013 at 2:52 pm #

    who the hell uses AF anyways?

  25. Carbo March 18, 2013 at 5:50 pm #

    As an amateur I upgraded from my 600D (Which was my first SLR in 20years – used to shoot with film when I was at school), I seriously considered the D600 but as I already had the 24-105 L and nifty fifty I decided on the Canon. I have to say I didn’t even get the after purchase guilt (What have I just done! Spending $2000 AUD on a camera body!!). The low light performance of this camera is awesome. I can take photos of my twin babies sleeping under very little light. I can shoot them at fast enough shutter to capture their erratic movements in low light conditions.

    OK so it only has 11 AF points, the number of points is not the problem for me, it’s more how closely packed together they are and from what I could gather the 39 points on the D600 don’t cover any more area?

    Being a gadget fan I also really enjoy the remote shooting capabilities although a little disappointed that they haven’t optimised the app for the iPhone5 screen size and don’t have a dedicated iPad app! Come on Canon….

    I also considered the 5DIII but the jump in price wasn’t worth it for me for the extra AF points\Video performance\2 card slots.

  26. Charles March 29, 2013 at 4:31 am #

    I am still with Velvia, noit yet leapt to digits, patiently waited for whatever came close. Now we have 20MP, FF, powerful engines etc. So, does, in anybody’s opinion, the 6D, saturation+3, come close to velvia, but then again a light box/screen for slides is much brighter than the computor screen,.

    As I have the zeiss 70-200 that can convvert to eos, I won”t be looking at Nikey.

  27. Iveson April 1, 2013 at 6:45 am #

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  28. Paradigm April 18, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    I’ve had the Canon EOS 6D now for 5 months and I can say it’s my favourite camera I’ve had in a long time. The inbuilt GPS and Wifi come in so useful, I couldn’t imagine getting a DSLR without it.
    Downside wise, the moiré you get in some shots can be painful, plus I’ve found the limitations on 30s shutter limit and sometimes very slow auto focus (compared to the 5D MK III) frustrating to say the least. Apart from the moiré patterning though, all these limitations can be bypassed by switching to manual so it’s not a big loss.

    For an all-round full-frame camera, the 6D is worth every cent – even considering getting a second!

  29. Carlos Cabezas May 22, 2013 at 1:58 pm #

    I shoot for the local paper for the events page, so I shoot everything that happen here in this small city. I started with Nikon D7000, then 5D Mark ii and now the 6D, my lens are 24-105mm 4L, 80-200 2.8L and a 50mm. from proms, graduations, weddings, concerts, parties, to jockey, futbol, tenis games to press conferences,.everything else….etc, I don’t find anything that I miss from D7000, or 5D mark ii maybe the duo card? no, the 1/8000? no, 1/180 flash sync? no. I am not saying that this camera is for everybody. we have say that this camera has experimenting the latest technology, yes, I shoot and my imagen goes directly to my ipad or laptop in my messenger bag getting my pictures online faster than the other guys,and GPS showing almost the original place where the picture was taken,…. the local paper is super happy for that, lightweight, best center point focus that ever use, it can focus in pitch darkness without the flash assistent that bother people with that red light on their faces. super silent shooter, I enjoy taking pictures during symphony concerts now i am not afraid that i will interrupt the piano passages of a violin concerto. the ISO is fenomenal better that the Mark iii. I also love that it remembers the last focus point that I use vertically or horizontally. I can shoot this camera with one hand pretty much all the functions are in your right hand. and this without talking about the video features. great for interviews and latest news reporters. I can change aperture without getting out of live view, and it has good waterproof but not to take a shower with it…. so far this camera has served me well hope to see more technology in cameras in the future. What is coming up from future cameras? ….we will see. =)

  30. DW June 10, 2013 at 7:00 am #

    I have a 40d and have been looking to upgrade. Q – would you buy the 6d when shooting is of fast action and in low low light (dance productions)?
    Thanks for your help.

    • Stephen Cook June 30, 2013 at 8:29 am #

      DW, can’t speak specifically to the 6D, but I’ve been shooting 5DMII for sports for several years. It works great for me, photos in magazines and on web sites, selling photos, etc. However, you have to have a different mentality to use this type of camera. I bought the 5DMII because of full frame, good high ISO performance and image quality. I’m conceited enough to think I could overcome the shortcomings.
      I use centerpoint focus only, so as long as the center point autofocus is excellent, total number of focus points and number of cross hair is irrelevent. The center point has to work. I also believe using center point and cutting off the auto-select of focus points and other auto-focus features speeds up the autofocus. The camera uses valuable processing power jumping around to different focus points. Shooting this way, you HAVE to be able to lock your desired action into the center of your screen and track effectively. I prefer this, as it keeps the camera from locking onto a player that is not the desired subject (provided I do my job right.) BTW, 4.5 frames per second is pretty sweet, considering you have to nearly double the price to exceed that on any other full frame camera.
      The frames per second is a different issue. You can’t start shooting a second before the anticipated action and expect to machine gun a good photo. You have to pick your spot and shoot on the action. I still follow through and take multi-frame sequences, but you have to time your photographs much more effectively.
      The only things that concern me about the 6D are the max. 1/4000 shutter, the lack of synch capability for studio lights without purchasing additional equipment, and the relatively slow 1/160 maximum flash synching without going into high speed synch.
      Haven’t decided for sure, but I’m leaning towards the 6D over the 5DMIII primarily because of price.

  31. Jeff Allen November 29, 2013 at 3:28 pm #

    So many people have written negatively about the 11 point autofocus system without actually using the camera which has a central cross point which works to minus 3 lux.
    Ive used the camera considerably now and for its price point it gives brilliant pictures which in the end is what it is all about. For tricky autofocus I still use my 7d but the 6d gives the better quality image.

  32. Ivan muller April 14, 2014 at 1:38 am #

    I have had my Eos 6D for almost 6 months now. The image quality is superb and the high iso image quality is even better. This weekend I photographed my daughters school play and ISO was set between 6400 and 25600 and I was astonished at how well the camera could capture these very contrasty images. The center spot AF was spot on 98% of the time and I could easily capture the highlights in faces and white clothing.

    For me the three biggest drawbacks are the lack of:

    1. AF joystick ala 5d2 and 5d3 ( present system is a pain to move AF points around )

    2. Outer AF points often cannot lock on subject matter – really needs to be more sensitive

    3. 2nd axis spirit level.

    I have used this camera professionally for interiors, architecture & portraits. the WIFI works perfectly as a viewing aid via my IPad, and is a bit of a party trick for my clients. GPS is really cool to have and the soft shutter sound is much better than the loud ‘clack’ of the 5d2.

    So in all respects a very nice upgrade from the old 5D2, everything feels more refined.

    I also love using it for my personal photography and combined with the 40mm pancake is a really small but high performance street and people tool.

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