Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Review

the original EOS 5D made full-frame photography accessible to the general public; the Mark II made it possible for a DSLR to capture Full HD video for the first time; and while the Mark III didn’t have quite the landmark features of its predecessors, its improved AF system made it one of the most complete DSLRs of recent times, loved by enthusiasts and professionals alike. the anon 5D series of cameras has a long history.

Despite the fact that the range has shifted slightly since then, the introduction of a new generation of the 5D is a significant event. This is because the 50.6MP 5DS has been released for those who desire even more pixels.

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Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Full Frame Digital SLR Camera Body

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Last update was on: June 10, 2023 8:41 am


  • All-new full-frame CMOS sensor
  • 3.2-inch touchscreen, 1,620,000 dots
  • DCI 4K video capture

It was actually only a slight increase in resolution from the 5D Mark II, so it’s wonderful to see a noticeable rise to 30.4MP here. The 22.3MP sensor in the 5D Mark III was starting to seem a bit obsolete in comparison to some of the competitors.

The files still come out at 6720 x 4480 pixels, which means that if you want to print at 300dpi the native size is slightly under A2 at 56.9 x 37.9cm (22.4 x 14.9 inches), while those who are searching for even more pixels have the option of using the 50.6MP 5DS.

The Canon 5D Mark IV employs the same cutting-edge sensor technology seen in the Canon 1D X Mark II and the Canon 80D. This sensor has on-chip digital-to-analog conversion, which ought to result in enhanced noise performance as well as a wider dynamic range for the 5D Mark IV’s photographs.

However, it is not the full story in terms of image quality. With the advent of Dual Pixel Raw technology, photographers now have the ability to fine-tune the region of greatest sharpness in their images.

Because each pixel is composed of two photodiodes, it is possible to create a file that contains a pair of pictures, each of which has a slightly different focal point because of the composition of the pixel. You can then open the file in Canon’s Digital Photo Professional program, where you may utilize Image Micro-adjustment to alter the focus ever so slightly. Although the change won’t be significant, Canon feels that this technology has the ability to save certain images.

The file size increases substantially, going from 37 megabytes to 67 megabytes, as you might anticipate, and you will be required to utilize Canon’s somewhat cumbersome DPP program.

The sensitivity may be expanded from its default range of 50-102,400 ISO all the way up to 100-32,000. Although it is impressive, this expanded range is actually the same as that of the 5D Mark III. However, Canon claims that it has improved the noise-processing algorithm for better results at higher sensitivities, and it is also one stop better than the Nikon D810, which is one of this camera’s closest competitors.

The AF mechanism is sensitive to light levels as low as -3EV (or -4EV in Live View), which is significantly dimmer than moonlight.

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is equipped with both a DIGIC 6 and a DIGIC 6+ processor. The DIGIC 6 processor is responsible for metering, while the DIGIC 6+ processor is in charge of everything else, including the 61-point autofocus system with 41 cross-type sensors (five of which are dual cross-type for even greater accuracy).

Because the autofocus system is sensitive down to -3EV (or -4EV in Live View), which is darker than moonlight, focusing shouldn’t be an issue in low light. Additionally, the fact that you can use lens/teleconverter combinations with a maximum aperture of f/8 and still have the luxury of all 61 AF points (21 cross-type) will be a real draw for photographers who take pictures of sports and wildlife.

There are phase-detection points on the imaging sensor itself, which means that the 5D Mark IV will have faster autofocus acquisition than the 5D Mark III did, and it will have performance that is just as quick as a lot of mirrorless cameras. The 5D Mark IV also inherits Canon’s Dual Pixel AF technology.

The large 3.2-inch display has an impressive 1,620,000 dots and touchscreen functionality, just like the 1D X Mark II. The main difference, however, is that while the touchscreen interface on the 1D X Mark II was only active during Live View, the touchscreen interface on the 5D Mark IV is active at all times, enabling menu navigation as well as image review.

It might not seem like a huge issue that Canon has preserved the same battery as in the 5D Mark III, but it is a smart choice since it means that existing customers who want to use both cameras in tandem need not require two sets of batteries and chargers.

The EOS 5D Mark IV is equipped with a variety of connectors, including HDMI Mini out, USB 3.0 terminals, an external microphone port, and headphone jacks.

Since the video landscape has changed quite a bit since then, with companies like Sony and Panasonic getting their act together in this area, it is not surprising to see Canon fighting back here with the inclusion of 4K video. Canon created its own mini-industry when the 5D Mark II was released with full high-definition video capabilities.

To be more specific, the 5D Mark IV is equipped with DCI 4K video capture at a resolution of 4096 by 2160 pixels, with frame rates of 30, 25, or 24 frames per second (approx 500Mbps). This also indicates that, should the need arise, it is possible to extract 8.8MP JPEG photos from 4K video using the Motion JPEG file type that is available for 4K recording.

When filming in 4K, however, this is the only file format that can be used, and there is no choice to make regarding the gamma profile of the footage. Things do get better at 1080p, with a number of settings available in Full HD, as well as the ability to record HD video at 120 frames per second, which may result in some spectacular slow-mo videos.

The Canon 5D Mark IV comes equipped with a variety of connectors, including ones for an external microphone and headphones, HDMI Mini out, and USB 3.0 terminals.

In conclusion, the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV is equipped with dual SD card slots, a CompactFlash card slot that is capable of accepting fast UDMA 7 cards, Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity for the purpose of transferring images to a compatible device, and a GPS receiver that is built right into the body of the camera.


protected against dust and the elements

The Canon EOS 5D Mark IV has a startling similarity to the preceding Canon EOS 5D Mark III (as well as the Canon EOS 5DS and EOS 5DSr), and there is a straightforward explanation for why this is the case. In a nutshell, Canon does not want current users of the 5D to have to, as they say, “re-learn” the new camera, and as a result, the company strives to make the transfer as simple and uncomplicated as is humanly feasible.

Having said that, the body has undergone a significant number of modifications and improvements. To begin, the hand grip has been extended to provide an even more gratifying grasp when you pick up the camera. Additionally, the pentaprism now stands somewhat taller to accommodate the GPS unit. Both of these changes were made to improve the user experience.

Despite the fact that more technology was packed into the body of the camera, the engineers at Canon were able to reduce the weight of the 5D Mark IV by 50 grams when compared to the Mark III. In addition, the weatherproofing of the camera was improved by adding additional grommets and seals.

The body of the camera is made out of a combination of magnesium alloy and polycarbonate, and the prism cover is made out of glass fiber. Despite the fact that the weight of the camera has been reduced, it does not have a cheap or flimsy feel to it; rather, it feels incredibly well put together and is prepared for the rigors of professional use.

The 5D Mark IV now has a programmable button right below the joypad on the rear of the body. This button is located in the same general location as the spring lever that was originally seen on the EOS 7D Mark II, although it has a slightly different appearance. This can be programmed to carry out a wide variety of tasks in conjunction with the command dial on the front of the camera. One option that might be helpful would be to configure it to control the ISO, which would allow you to adjust the sensitivity without having to take your attention off the viewfinder.

Handling is very polished, which is to be expected from a camera that is in its fourth generation (and much improved for the additional functionality in the touchscreen – more on that in a bit), so existing Canon users should feel right at home. However, photographers shooting with the 5D Mark IV alongside a 1D Mark II may end up pressing the wrong button or two due to the slightly different assignment of controls.


  • 61-point AF, 41 cross-type AF points
  • 21 AF points of the cross-type operating at f/8
  • Live View autofocus using a dual-pixel CMOS sensor

The autofocus performance does not fall short of what you would anticipate from a camera that shares a nearly identical autofocus configuration with Canon’s flagship 1D X Mark II (although Canon is careful to point out that the systems aren’t completely identical because they use some different internal components in each camera).

The 61-point autofocus system of the 5D Mark IV functioned exceptionally well when tracking subjects that were moving quickly.

The 61-point autofocus system of the 5D Mark IV functioned exceptionally well when tracking subjects that were moving quickly.

The metering system of the 5D Mark IV is connected to the autofocus system, and the latter helps to identify and track not only colored objects but also faces, which enables the camera to do facial recognition. The autofocus tracking worked quite well in the conditions that we put it through, successfully latching on to and following the subject that we had selected.

We found that Zone AF functioned well in our tests, and when combined with one of the six Case Studies that modify the AF to take into consideration the speed, sensitivity, and how erratically your subject is moving, you have a powerful combo. In our tests, we found that Zone AF performed well.

The coverage is acceptable, and it is even better than with the 5D Mark III, but there is still a discernible tilt toward the central portion of the picture. Putting that petty criticism to the side, the AF system does an outstanding job overall.


  • 7 frames per second of rapid fire
  • 150,000 pixel RGB+IR metering sensor
  • Intelligent Viewfinder II technology

Canon’s 252-zone RGB+IR metering system with Intelligent Scene Analysis is included in the 5D Mark IV. This system is similar to the one found in the 5DS but distinct from the one found in the 1D X Mark II. When compared to the older iFCL system that was included in the 5D Mark III, this newer system is much more beneficial.

However, in comparison to Mark III, it does a better job of assessing the entire scene as a whole in order to deliver an exposure that is well balanced. High-contrast scenarios are the only ones that throw up issues, which is to be expected. The system gives more weight to the active AF point when determining how much weight to give the exposure.

There are also no unwelcome surprises to be found in the white balance system of the 5D Mark IV due to the fact that the system performs extremely well. White priority Auto settings provide neutral photos even when working with tungsten lighting, but the Ambience priority Auto settings have a tendency to keep some warmth in the image. White priority is one of the two options available in the Auto settings menu.

The metering performed quite well in a wide variety of illumination situations.

The Canon 5D Mark IV has a viewfinder that is big, bright, and offers coverage of the whole image area one would anticipate from a full-frame DSLR. In addition to showing important shooting information at the bottom, it also has the advantage of benefitting from a technology that Canon refers to as Intelligent Viewfinder II.

When you hold the camera up to your eye, this gives you the ability to display an electronic level, as well as grid lines and a whole lot of other essential shooting information that you might want to have sent back to you at that moment. You have the ability to pick what information is displayed in the set-up menu and what information is hidden from view. The available options include battery level, shooting mode, white balance, drive mode, AF, metering, picture quality, Digital Lens Optimizer, Dual Pixel RAW, and Flicker detection.

Moving on to the display on the back, which, because to the high resolution it possesses, has to rank among the crispest displays now available. Even when we used a very dense 10-stop Lee Filters Big Stopper, the display was exceptionally clear, and there was no obvious signal noise present that would have made framing-up difficult. This feature not only makes it easy to compose images in Live View, but it also makes it a breeze to do so.

Even when employing a robust 10-stop neutral density filter, the high-quality rear display makes it very simple to frame photographs.

When we were testing the Canon 5D Mark IV, there were times when a vari-angle screen would have been helpful. This was especially true when composing low-angle shots; however, due to the excellent viewing angle and clarity of the display, the lack of a vari-angle screen was less of a problem than it would have been with some other cameras.

Not to mention the user-friendly touchscreen interface, which, if we’re being honest, is a feature that was desperately needed. It is much easier to traverse the many menus of the Canon 5D Mark IV because to the inclusion of touch control for both the main and Quick Menus. Additionally, the ability to pinch-to-zoom and swipe through photographs makes using the camera in the field much more efficient.

The burst rate is a respectable 7 frames per second. Going one step further to 8 frames per second might have felt like a bit more of a jump from the 5D Mark III’s 6 frames per second, but the Mark IV can now sustain this for a pretty decent 21 raw files before the buffer needs to take a breather (if you’re shooting JPEGs, the capacity is unlimited). This is an improvement over the 5D Mark III’s 18 raw files at 6 frames per second (and that was at a lower resolution too).

On a single charge, it is capable of about 900 shots because of the use of the same LP-E6N battery as the 5D Mark III. We put the camera through its paces, making extensive use of a variety of its capabilities as well as the display; thus, 900 photos may be a bit of an exaggeration, but we would be more than content to venture out for the day with only a single battery.

Image quality

  • ISO 100-32,000, with the ability to extend to 50-102,400 (H2)
  • Integrated filter with a low pass bandpass
  • +/-5 EV exposure adjustment in increments of one-third or half a stop

It should not come as a surprise to learn that the results from the new 30.4-megapixel sensor reveal great levels of clarity. These levels of information are not quite as high as those displayed by the astonishing files produced by the 5DS, but they are still very impressive indeed. You should have no trouble making prints with a high level of rich detail at the Super A3 size, while prints at the A2 size and beyond are a realistic prospect – not to mention the option to crop photographs very closely if that becomes necessary.

The 30.4-megapixel sensor produces an impressively high level of detail in images.

There is a concern that the results would reveal more noise as a result of the increase in resolution when compared to the 5D Mark III. This concern is especially prevalent in the more sensitive regions of the dynamic range. However, we are delighted to report that high ISO performance is extremely good.

Even at ISO2000, the results are extremely excellent; there are some indicators of luminance noise, but it seems very organic, and there is no evidence of chroma (color) noise. The results at ISO800 still appear to be free of noise in our sample photographs, and even at ISO2000, the results are impressive.

It is feasible to minimize the amount of chroma noise and luminance noise that is present in raw files by utilizing the software that is included with Canon’s Digital Photo Professional. Our test images were taken at an ISO setting of 10,000.

Even with an ISO of 10,000, there wasn’t much of a problem with noise management.

This is very certainly attributable, at least in part, to the introduction of on-chip digital-to-analog conversion, which not only gives an enhanced noise performance in comparison to the 5D Mark III but also delivers a higher dynamic range.

Raw files can be pushed further in post-processing, which enables you to intentionally underexpose shots to preserve highlight detail in the knowledge that you can recover lost shadow detail later without your shot being ruined by the introduction of image noise. Raw files also allow you to recover lost shadow detail without your shot being ruined by the introduction of image noise.

There are also no concerns regarding the accuracy of the color reproduction. The JPEG Picture Styles give pleasant results (the Landscape style, for example, delivers notably striking blue skies), and skin tones may be reproduced properly.

At first glance, the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV may appear to be unimpressively similar to the model that it successors. However, you shouldn’t let this mislead you since the engineers at Canon haven’t been sitting still.

When compared to the EOS 5D Mark III, virtually every aspect has been modified and enhanced in some way with this camera. The full-frame 30.4-megapixel sensor might not quite grab the headlines like those of some competitors, but it is still a welcome boost in resolution compared to the 22.3-megapixel sensor of the EOS 5D Mark III. Additionally, the improved noise and dynamic range performance make it an even more tempting proposition for users who are considering upgrading.

Aside from the annoyances caused by the videos, the rather high cost is the only other big barrier to purchase.

And if you do decide to update, you will receive a camera that is instantly familiar to you, in addition to enjoying a number of enhancements. To begin, the autofocus system is improved, with the Dual Pixel AF in Live View being a significant step forward in the technology. The functionality of the touchscreen makes the handling far better, while also contributing to a significant improvement in performance.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Specs

MSRP$3499 (body only), $4399 (w/24-70 F4L lens), $4599 (w/24-105 F4L IS USM lens)
Body type
Body typeMid-size SLR
Body materialMagnesium alloy
Max resolution6720 x 4480
Image ratio w:h1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels30 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors32 megapixels
Sensor sizeFull frame (36 x 24 mm)
Sensor size notessRaw suppoorted in all aspect ratio. Size between 5 and 7.5 megapixel.
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorDigic 6+
Color spacesRGB, AdobeRGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
ISOAuto, 100-32000 (expands to 50-102400)
Boosted ISO (minimum)50
Boosted ISO (maximum)102400
White balance presets6
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, normal
File formatJPEG (Exif v.2.3)Raw (Canon CRW, 14-bit)
Optics & Focus
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousTouchFace DetectionLive View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points61
Lens mountCanon EF
Focal length multiplier
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3.2″
Screen dots1,620,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeOptical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder magnification0.71×
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/8000 sec
Exposure modesProgramShutter priorityAperture priorityManualBulbScene Intelligent Auto
Built-in flashNo
External flashYes (via hot shoe or flash sync port)
Flash X sync speed1/200 sec
Drive modesSingle shootingContinuous hi/loSilent single shootingSilent continuous2/10 sec self-timer / remote control
Continuous drive7.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 secs, custom)
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpotPartial
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±3 (2, 3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes
Videography features
Resolutions4096 x 2160 (29.97p, 24p, 23.98p), 1920 x 1080 (59.94p, 29.97p, 24p, 23.98p), 1280 x 720 (119.9p)
FormatMPEG-4, Motion JPEG
Videography notes8.8MP stills can be grabbed from 4K video; camera supports ALL-I, IPB and IPB Light compression.
Storage typesCompactFlash + SD/SDHC/SDXC card (UHS-I enabled)
USBUSB 3.0 (5 GBit/sec)
HDMIYes (mini-HDMI)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portYes
Wireless notes802.11b/g/n + NFC
Remote controlYes (wired, wireless, or smartphone)
Environmentally sealedYes
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLP-E6N lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)900
Weight (inc. batteries)890 g (1.96 lb / 31.39 oz)
Dimensions151 x 116 x 76 mm (5.94 x 4.57 x 2.99″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Price


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