Moire and sharpness battle – Nikon D4 vs Canon EOS 5D Mark II and Canon EOS 5D Mark III

by planetmitch5 Comments

We had the Nikon D4 for the weekend on loan from LensProToGo and wanted to compare it to the 2 bodies I own – the Canon EOS 5D Mark II and the Canon EOS 5D Mark III.

Here are some side-by-side examples of standard vs cinestyle picture styles as well as moire and sharpening on all 3 cameras as well as I threw in a quick sample of using the cinelook FCPX plugin to do a quick grade.

It is a shame that the Nikon D4 is soft in video! I didn't make time to explore the different crop factors on the Nikon D4 – tho I have been reading that the 2.7 crop makes the Nikon D4 shine – for video it appears much sharper.

Nikon D4 tests

[tentblogger-vimeo 44522108]

What do you think?

Have you had a chance to test the Nikon D4? What were your thoughts?

And yes, I know the are a lot more factors to consider, but we just wanted to show a quick video comparison showing moire and sharpness.

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)


  1. The D4 did seem softer but I noticed more detail of the roof tiles on the shed in the background in the magnified views. I wouldn’t have expected that.

    Good moire test but to be fair all three cameras need to move the same amount where as the MkIII wasn’t moving as much to tell.

    Nice work. Would like to see a 1Dx vs MkIII.

  2. Does anyone know if the MkIII can edit in camera? I don’t mean link shots together but can it trim down the top and tail of shots if you want to save space on cards, trim down shots in camera?

  3. I’ve been following the HDSLR scene for a year now, and now I am puzzled more today than I was when I started out. My primary occupation is a director/editor at a news tv station in Malta,Europe but I started venturing in documentaries and productions as a side job for more than a year, at first I was eying the GH2. The footage I saw amazed me, but than moved to canon , for more practical options basically, I can’t rely on hacked hardware. At first I was going to get a 600d but ended up getting a 60d, now I need another camera and was very interested in getting the 5D Mark II , but then the Mark III emerged!

    The many blogs I’ve been following, practically I browse trough all! Are saying something about the sharpness on the latest 5D, I wish to ask what does this mean is the footage to soft , lacking detail or it’s just a question of lack of detail in a pixel contest, by that I Mean it’s at magnification that one can notice this lack of sharpness or it’s all over the image!

    Also any idea about what starter lenses should I consider, what about primes does old glass resolve in better quality, or stick to modern primes, also what’s a good starter light kit for a starter budget.

    Maybe if you get chance, I get some feedback

  4. Seems like Nikon is better for photos, and Canon for video (except maybe Canon 5diii is great for photos too, but more costly if that’s what you need to get that sharpness).

    I must say with prime lenses with Canon, you can get some pretty sharp photos, although I shoot video only and use 5dmkii

  5. I’m really lost, I shoot with a 7D now and had planned on upgrading to the 5DM3. I shoot mainly photos with some video. I read that the 5DM2 has better photos, but the 5DM3 has better low light photos and better auto focusing. So should I give up good photos just to have a camera with better low light and better AF.

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