Phone 4S vs the $2000 Canon 5d MKII [Video]

Oct 31, 2011 - 9 Comments

How does the iPhone 4S’s new cameras 1080p video recording stack up to a pro-level $2300 Canon 5d MKII digital camera? Surprisingly well, as is demonstrated by this video from Robino Films. Both cameras shot footage at the same time and side-by-side, with the scenes in perfect sync so that video can be paused and examined more closely.

The settings for both cameras are as follows:

iPhone 4S

– AE.AF locked. That’s all you have!

Canon 5D MKII

– Canon 50mm 1.4
– ISO 160 ~ 640 (varied per shot to match the iPhone)
– F 7~22 (varied per shot to match the iPhone)
– Shutter 1/60th
– Auto WB
– Standard Picture Style
– 1080p 30

Check out the full video in 1080p on Vimeo, the iPhone 4S’s camera is quite impressive.

Thanks for sending this in Matthew


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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPhone


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  1. Like For Real? says:

    I love how they didn’t try walking around with the iPhone. Enjoy those watery ripples you get when trying to walk around recording with your iPhone, Ill be enjoying the movie quality the 5D will actually give you with full camera control, and DoF.

    This comparison was just stupid and an utter waste of time if you think that HD is what makes a video… >.>

    Nubs will be nubs.

  2. Pedro says:

    Try to freeze a passing by on the road…. always blurred motions on the 5D but clear images on the iPhone…WOW

    • someone says:

      That’s because iPhones shutter is very fast in that bright situation. It would be normal if shutter speed would be half of the framerate. Which means 1/60th of a second in that situation. Faster than that wouldn’t look good actually. That’s why they have ND filters in bright situations, to keep the aperture open and have slower shutter speeds.

  3. Marcos says:

    This comparison is absolute stupid. I have a 5D Mark II and its movie quality is superb!

  4. pdxdante says:

    Neither of these videos are particularly sharp or impressive. They both look strictly low resolution despite the HD designation. All HD is clearly not created equal.

  5. fl4ck says:

    Nice demonstration.. I like the white levels on the Canon and the fact that it can record the animated billboards without the ripple. On the other hand, the added warmth on the iPhone may bring some extra detail to darker areas. Still I like the Canons whites.. they just seem more natural. Thanks for the video.

  6. Bv7 says:

    Simply wonderful I like 4s colors they’re great I don’t know if in the future iPhone will have a plenoptic camera Jobs wanted it.

    Good demostration :)

  7. ice says:

    What is the point of this test if the better camera is trying to match the iPhone 4S? That is like taking a Ferrari and comparing it to a Fiat by only driving 40MPH

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