Camera Rocket Review Our evaluation of D3S vs 5D Mark III

Image Quality

RAW image quality independent of lens

DxOMark Low light, DxOMark Color depth and DxOMark Dynamic range

Focusing

How fast and easily does the camera nail focus

focus points

Responsiveness

How much delay is there between you and your photo?

continuous shooting

Reviews

What do the experts think?

Reviews from nikonrumors.com, techradar.com, imaging-resource.com, photographyblog.com and 3 more

No winner declared

Too close to call

Benchmarks Real world tests of Nikon D3S vs EOS 5D Mark III

Low light image quality Highest ISO setting that still achieves great image quality

Nikon D3S
3,253 ISO
EOS 5D Mark III
2,293 ISO

Resolution Results from photos of standard resolution charts

Nikon D3S
1,700 LPH
EOS 5D Mark III
2,800 LPH

Focus lag Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Nikon D3S
197 ms

Shutter lag Delay to take a photo when prefocused

Startup delay Delay from power on to first photo

Nikon D3S
120 ms

Continuous shooting Delay between fully pressing shutter to image capture

Features Key features of the Nikon D3S  vs EOS 5D Mark III 

Megapixels Maximum resolution images are captured at

Nikon D3S
12.1 MP
EOS 5D Mark III
22.3 MP

Max ISO Maximum light sensitivity of the sensor

Nikon D3S
102,400 ISO
EOS 5D Mark III
102,400 ISO

Focus points How many different points the camera can focus on

Screen size Larger screens make it easier to preview and review photos

Viewfinder size Large viewfinders are brighter and more comfortable to use

Pixel size How much area of the sensor is dedicated to each pixel

Nikon D3S
71.4 microns
EOS 5D Mark III
38.7 microns

Reviews Word on the street

Nikon D3S  vs EOS 5D Mark III 

8.9
8.2
For more advanced processing, Nikon offers the considerably more sophisticated Capture NX2, which is a truly professional-grade platform for in-depth raw and JPEG adjustment.
Nikon D3S

10.0
9.0
As detailed on the previous page, the Nikon D3S is a highly responsive professional DSLR camera that has great ergonomics, build quality and a fantastic feature set - but it’s the image quality department where the real news is.
Nikon D3S

8.0
9.0
We found that the screen provides a sharp, clear view even when shooting outside in bright sunlight.
EOS 5D Mark III

Overall

9.1 Out of 10
8.8 Out of 10

Specifications Full list of technical specs

sensor

Nikon D3S  vs
EOS 5D Mark III 
Type CMOS CMOS
Megapixels 12.1 MP 22.3 MP
Resolution 4256 x 2832 5456 x 4096
Size Full frame Full frame
Area 36 x 23.9 mm 36 x 24 mm
Crop factor 1.0x 1.0x
Pixel size 71.4 microns 38.7 microns
Light sensitivity 200 ISO to 12,800 ISO 100 ISO to 25,600 ISO
Light sensitivity (Boost) 12,800 ISO to 102,400 ISO 50 ISO to 102,400 ISO
Codecs
RAW
JPEG
Self cleaning sensor Yes Yes
Tested vertical resolution 1,700 LPH 2,800 LPH
Tested horizontal resolution 1,700 LPH 2,800 LPH

focus system

Type Phase detection Phase detection
Focus points 51 61
Cross type focus points 15 41
Supports continuous No No

shutter

Min 30 s 30 s
Max 1/8000 s 1/8000 s

performance

Max continuous shooting 9 fps 6 fps
Battery life 4,200 950
Continuous shooting
6 fps @ 5760 x 3840, JPEG, 65 shots
6 fps @ 5760 x 3840, RAW, 13 shots
9 fps, JPEG
Focus lag 197 ms 120 ms
Shutter lag 43 ms 61 ms
Startup delay 120 ms 500 ms

video

Nikon D3S  vs
EOS 5D Mark III 
Video 1280 x 720 @ 24 fps 1920 x 1080 @ 30 fps
Shoots video in 24p Yes Yes
Shoots high speed video No No
External mic jack 3.5mm 3.5mm

display

Type LCD LCD
Size 3" 3.2"
Resolution 921 k dots 1,040 k dots
Has a touch screen No No
Has a flip out screen No No
Supports live view Yes Yes

viewfinder

Viewfinder mirror Opaque Opaque
Viewfinder Yes Yes
Type Pentaprism Pentaprism
Coverage 100% 100%
Magnification 0.7x 0.71x
Viewfinder size 0.7x 0.71x

form factor

Size 160 x 157 x 88 mm 152 x 116 x 76 mm
Thickness 88 mm 76 mm
Weight 1,240 g 950 g
Is weather sealed Yes Yes

features

Includes a GPS No No
Supports HDR No Yes
Automatic panorama No No
Create realistic 3D images No No
Image stabilization
Nikon D3S
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Canon EOS 5D Mark III
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