A Brief Comparison Between The Canon EOS R5 & EOS R6

One expects that if camera models have numbers, they should correspond to some sort of ordinal correlative. But with the EOS R5 and EOS R6, Canon has decided that this tradition is no longer needed. Also, this isn't the first time Canon has confused us with labeling conundrums (remember the EOS 5DS R and the EOS 5DS without the R DSLR cameras?), but this time they went even further with the R5 and R6. By releasing them together (with very different price tags), they immediately made it look like one is superior to the other one; but that's not really true. They both have their pros and cons; and lucky for you, we are here to pin-point out the main differences between these two brand-new cameras.

When looking at them side by side you'll immediately notice that they look almost identical. They both have a firm design that slightly distances from a small DSLR feeling. This makes them both well suited for everyday carry-on cameras, and our selection of Torres messenger bags are perfect for the task of keeping any of these protected in a stylish way. At MegaGear we are very excited about trying out these two promising and awaited full-frame mirrorless cameras. They both offer unique photo and video capabilities, and we just want to help you out into making any of them part of your current lifestyle.

Without further ado, let's compare these two promising cameras!

The Immediate Difference

So, besides the values (EOS R5 $3899.00 and EOS R6 $2499.00) the main difference is that the R5 shoots 8K movies and the R6 shoots 4K ones. So, if you NEED 8K, the R5 is the one for you. If not, you'll still get high quality results for minus $1,400.00.

Alright, comparison over, see you next time...


Just kidding, obviously there are more things that we can spot between these two similar cameras.

Beyond the Obvious

The EOS R6 is designed to meet the expectations of both photographers and videographers who demand strong and versatile cameras for keeping up with their content creation lifestyles. It allows its users to photograph at high-speed, making it great for both tranquil scenarios like maternity and pregnancy photos, and some action photography as well if needed.

But for more professional demands, the EOS R5 is the one for you. This camera is aimed to continue the Canon's full frame both legacy and tradition, making it ideal for more extreme types of photography like weddings, sports, photojournalism, wildlife and even landscape imagery.

Since it is a mirrorless camera, you might be a bit worried about its toughness when shooting outdoors. But don't worry, it is perfectly weather sealed, so you don't have to protect it like a newborn baby or something like that.

Pro confession: almost any seriously committed landscape photographer will deep inside acknowledge that they would wish for lighter yet trustworthy gear.

Under the Hood Similarities

Both cameras feature the latest and greatest image stabilization system Canon engineers have been able to develop so far. Side by side, the EOS R5 and the EOS R6 feature a Dual Pixel CMOS AF II sensor with 1,053 Automatic AF zones, meaning 100% AF Frame Coverage.

They also include a very interesting function (or distinction) that will make both portrait and wild- life shooters curious about. The two systems feature human eye and animal detection auto-focus with full AF & Auto Exposure tracking. Without differences, the EOS R5 and EOS R6 can shoot at 20 frames per second using the electronic shutter, and up to 12 FPS with the mechanical setting.

And last but not least, ergonomics and a nice goodie on the batteries. If you are familiar with older systems, you'll immediately recognize both the joystick and scrolling wheel from very early Canon flagship DSLR cameras. They also feature a longer-lasting battery labeled LPE 6NH, which is good, especially for a mirrorless system. The great thing is that if you are upgrading from a 5D, 6D or even the original EOS R, you can still use those batteries with them (at a shorter span of course).

Looking Closer at Some Specs

Some other stuff might look similar but are quite different when taking a closer look. First the memory systems, the EOS R5 has two bays, a CFexpress (for high speed recording, mandatory for 8K video) and a SD UHS II for photographic purposes. Then the EOS R6 comes with two SD UHS II bays, ideal for storing raws in one card, and JPEGs in the other one.

Both camera bodies come with Vari Angle LCD Screens, the R5's is a bit more powerful than the R6's. The first comes with 2.1 million dots and 3.2" layout, and the second one is a bit smaller with 1.62 million and 3.0" wide. Remember rotating your screen for maximum protection when keeping your camera outside a holster or bag.

Pro Tip: Get extra protection with a Camera LCD Optical Screen Protector. It is literally a <1% investment of the overall body's price that will make every penny count.

Also the two bodies have a generous half-inch viewfinder, but the R5 has a 5.76 million dots resolution; and the R6 comes with a still pretty decent amount of 3.69.

When looking at them from the top the major differences pop-right away. Despite both cameras following Canon's traditional top-dial layouts, the EOS R5 has a nice and very useful top LCD screen for precise information during extreme conditions like harsh-sunlight, or for power saving purposes. Contrary to the EOS R6 which is still pretty similar to the original Canon EOS R camera.

One of the biggest differences is the pixel count, the EOS R5 offers a 45.0 Mp sensor, while the EOS R6 comes with a 20.1 Mp one. This shouldn't bias your purchase though, we strongly think that you should only go with the R5 if your income depends on delivering 8K videos, or if you are going to use those photos for massive (building size billboards) prints. If not, then the R6 is just

perfect for you. Although, if you wish to leverage the balance towards the more expensive camera, it's ISO performs a bit better under low-lighting situations.

Oh, and the EOS R5 has a nice button that might come in handy when shooting under dark situations since it will illuminate your settings after pushing it.

How They Both Feel?

Long-gone are the days in which people fierce-fully debated about DSLRs and Mirrorless camera systems. The latter are considered the present since a while, no longer the future as some might still claim. A simple history revision was sufficient for one to notice that this new format revolution was not a temporary thing as some photo enthusiasts suggested.

Changing from a chunky DSLR system to a small mirrorless one has been quite a challenge since day one. The main reason, the overall feeling of the camera in the hand, and various manufacturers decided to impose the small format without asking their users too much. They simply expected them to adjust with time.

Canon, on the other hand, seems to have heard the discomfort expressed by some photographers about the mirrorless light handling. Our hypothesis could explain why Canon's EOS R cameras have kept a DSLR similar feeling, at least an entry level one. Without any lens, the EOS R5 body weighs 650 grams (738 grams, with battery and memory cards), and the EOS R6 598 grams (690 grams, with inners installed).

Canon RF Lenses

From DSLR to Mirrorless systems, every camera manufacturer has met the need of changing their lens line-up. This is not just a marketing strategy, but an optical solution. Mirrorless camera systems allow a shorter gap between the sensor and the rear element of the lens. This impacts in the overall optic design, resulting in a completely new line-up.

In a slowly, but consistent pace, Canon has been releasing more and more RF Mount lenses. Pretty much all of them correspond to the traditional and most popular lenses like:

  • Canon RF 35mm f/1.8 Macro IS STM

  • Canon RF 50mm f/1.2L USM

  • Canon RF 85mm f/1.2L USM

  • Canon RF 15-35mm f/2.8L IS USM

  • Canon RF 24-70mm f/2.8L IS USM

  • Canon RF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

    And many others to come, not to mention the third party ones.

    Some people have been speculating about cinema lenses for the new RF mount. Something very plausible, especially when considering the 4K and 8K video capabilities these cameras bring to us.

On the Overheating Issues

Recently, Canon released a statement that clarifies something peculiar going on with the two systems we've been discussing through this entry. This is the overheating "problem"; which more than an issue, is more something like a déjà vu. This exact same thing happened with the original Canon EOS R, and is a common happening in all these photography cameras that are capable of recording video. Ergo, if you are planning to film movies for long periods of time, then perhaps you should be looking for a professional cinema camera instead.

According to Canon Rumors, there are several scenarios in which depending on the need, the recording and recovery times will vary. A lot of people have made a lot of fuzz about this, but honestly we think that the times are quite decent for a camera that is not entirely designed for solely video recording.

Curious Fact: One-take long scenes are extremely rare in movie making work-flows, and here is an example of how a 6 1/2 minutes long take looks like.

So yeah, you'll have to be patient if you want to record long scenes with any of these cameras.

The main reason why these sorts of gear tends to overheat, is because of all the hard work they have to perform under extremely limited circumstances. According to Canon, some crucial design decisions (sacrifices) had to be made in order to achieve the sweet portable size they came up with (not to mention the weather sealing). One of the biggest ones, of course, was to leave out the internal fan from the equation. Although, Canon uses a magnesium alloy body to dissipate some of the heat produced by the high resolution, frame and bit rate and full width sensor created when combining forces.

One thing to be very cautious about is that the information Canon released has been estimated in accordance to an ideal environmental temperature of 73°F (23°C). The good thing is that both camera systems EOS R5 and EOS R6 give a warning then approaching dangerous heat levels (in case you are trying to film something in warmer places).

The honest and healthy advice here is to know your limitations. A smooth 8K raw video recording workflow requires tons of storage and monstrous computing power to actually develop them. We do think that for precise recordings and even indie film making, these are very promising cameras to have as your production tools.

Wrapping it Up

Canon has taken careful and slow steps into the mirrorless world, and have finally proven some sort of consistency in their vision and strategy. We know that they like making things a bit complicated, hence the effort of untangling this R5 and R6 confusion.

Remember, both cameras are powerful full-frame mirrorless systems with high quality video capabilities. So, we hope that this brief guide will help you out into discerning better if you need to kick in the extra $1,400.00 or not. Remember, if you are upgrading from previous DSLR models, you'll also have to invest in at least one RF mount lens. The good thing is that by now we are sure that you have a clear knowledge on which lens you should put your money into, and your back and hands will thank you for the considerable weight loss.

Cheers!

 

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