Best Full-frame DSLR

Best Full-frame DSLR

If you intend to pursue a career in landscape or architectural photography, the normal entry-level digital SLRs will be of little help for you. Instead, you will have to go for one of the best full-frame DSLRs in the market; known for their advanced features which facilitate wide angle photography without any distortion.
Nearly, all camera manufacturers have full-frame DSLRs in their list of products today. While Nikon has the likes of D600 and D800 to its credit, Canon has EOS 5D Mark III and, the recently announced, EOS 6D to boast of. Even Sony has thrown its hat in the ring with the introduction of DSLRs like Alpha 850 and, the recently launched, Alpha A99. With so many contenders vying for the top spot, it becomes very difficult to decide which is actually the best.

At the same time, there is no denying the fact that 'best' has become one of the most overrated words in the world today. It's impossible to say that a particular full-frame DSLR is the best in the market, and not draw criticism for your opinion. That leaves us with only one option; provide a list of top digital SLRs, with their specs and features, and let the user himself decide which of these would be ideal for him. So here are the details of the top full-frame DSLRs as of 2012, and you can compare and decide which model is ideal for you.

Note: Even though resolution, image detail, etc., are the most important factors that need to be taken into consideration when you compare full-frame DSLRs, factors like price and ease of use cannot be ignored.

Nikon D600
  • Size and Weight: 5.55×4.45×3.23 in., 760 g
  • Resolution: 24.3 effective megapixels
  • Image Sensor: CMOS 35.9×24 mm Full-frame FX format
  • Lens Mount: Nikon F-mount
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism SLR Viewfinder
  • Autofocus Points: 39 (9 cross-type)
  • Monitor: 3.2-inch Wide Viewing Angle TFT-LCD
  • Sensitivity: ISO 100 - 6400, Lo-1 (ISO 50), Hi-1 (ISO 12,800), Hi-2 (ISO 25,600)
  • Continuous Shooting: 5.5 fps
  • Storage: SD, SDHC, SDXC (2 slots)
  • Batteries: EN-EL15 Lithium-ion Battery (900 shots per charge)
  • Price: $2,099.95
Canon EOS 6D**
  • Size and Weight: 5.71×4.37×2.8 in., 770 g
  • Resolution: 20.6 effective megapixels
  • Image Sensor: CMOS 35.8×23.9 mm (Full-frame)
  • Lens Mount: Canon EF mount
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism SLR Viewfinder
  • Autofocus Points: 11
  • Monitor: 3.0-inch Clear View II TFT LCD
  • Sensitivity: Auto, 100 - 25600 in 1/3 stops, + optional 50, 51200, 102400
  • Continuous Shooting: 4.5 fps
  • Storage: SD card, SDHC card, SDXC memory card
  • Batteries: Lithium-Ion LP-E6 battery (1090/220 shots per charge*)
  • Price: $2,099.00
**Canon EOS 6D was announced in September, and is scheduled for release in December 2012.
*Viewfinder mode/Live mode


Sony Alpha A99
  • Size and Weight: 5.79×4.37×3.07 in., 812 g
  • Resolution: 24.3 effective megapixels
  • Image Sensor: 'Exmor' CMOS 35.8×23.9 mm sensor
  • Lens Mount: Sony A-mount lenses
  • Viewfinder: Electronic viewfinder
  • Autofocus Points: 19
  • Monitor: 3.0-inch TruBlack Tilting LCD
  • Sensitivity: Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 25600
  • Continuous Shooting: 6 fps
  • Storage: Memory Stick PRO Duo/Pro-HG Duo; SD card, SDHC card, SDXC memory card
  • Batteries: Lithium-Ion NP-FM500H battery (410/500 shots per charge*)
  • Price: $2799.99
*Viewfinder mode/Live mode

Canon EOS 5D Mark III
  • Size and Weight: 6.0×4.6×3.0 in., 950 g
  • Resolution: 22.3 effective megapixels
  • Image Sensor: 36×24 mm CMOS
  • Lens Mount: Canon EF mount
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism SLR Viewfinder
  • Autofocus Points: 61
  • Monitor: 3.2-inches TFT Color Display
  • Sensitivity: ISO 100-25600 (in 1/3-stop or whole-stop increments)
  • Continuous Shooting: 6 fps
  • Storage: Compact Flash Type I, SD/SDHC/SDXC
  • Batteries: Lithium-Ion LP-E6 battery (950 shots per charge*)
  • Price: $3,499.00
Nikon D800
  • Size and Weight: 5.7×4.8×3.2 in., 950 g
  • Resolution: 36.3 effective megapixels
  • Image Sensor: 35.9×24 mm CMOS
  • Lens Mount: Nikon F-mount
  • Viewfinder: Eye-level Pentaprism SLR Viewfinder
  • Autofocus Points: 51
  • Monitor: 3.2-inches TFT Color LCD
  • Sensitivity: ISO 100 - 640; Lo-1 (ISO 50), Hi-1 (ISO 12,800), Hi-2 (ISO 25,600)
  • Continuous Shooting: 4 fps
  • Storage: CompactFlash, SD, SDHC, SDXC
  • Batteries: EN-EL15 Lithium-ion Battery (900 shots per charge*)
  • Price: $2,999.95
Our Take: If value for money is your priority, you should go with Nikon D600 which has features like 100 percent coverage viewfinder, 39 point autofocus system with 9 cross-type points, professional level 1080p HD video recording, Wi-Fi compatibility, lighting control, compatibility to Nikon DX lenses, etc., to its credit. It is not just the smallest and lightest full-frame DSLR, but is also one of the least expensive model in production today. It is an affordable, easy to use digital SLR, which is your best bet if you intend to upgrade to a full-frame DSLR over the course of next couple of months.

Full-frame digital SLRs are meant for professional photographers who are well-versed with all the intricacies of digital photography and photography equipment. If you are an amateur, it would be wise to opt for one of the numerous SLRs for beginners which are easy to handle and inexpensive in terms of money value. Once you have mastered the art of using a digital camera, you can go ahead and upgrade to a full-frame DSLR.
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