Today we are going to see the ISO performance of Canon 1DX Mark II Vs Canon 7D Mark II. These are the two high end DSLR cameras from Canon. Canon 1DX Mark II is the current high end full frame DSLR camera body from Canon and Canon 7D Mark II being the high end half frame body from Canon. Let us see whether Is it worth paying the additional dollars for the 1DX Mark II?

We will be increasing the ISO values by 1 stop and observing the result for both the DSLR camera bodies. Consider reading, Understanding ISO Sensitivity if you want to learn the basics of ISO in photography.

At ISO 100

ISO 100 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 100 CROP

There is no noise at 100 ISO in both the camera bodies.

At ISO 200

ISO 200 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 200 CROP

At ISO 200 there is a slight noise pick up in Canon 7D Mark II. But, it is only a minute one. You can easily remove it by basic noise reduction. No noise in Canon 1DX Mark II.

At ISO 400

ISO 400 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 400 CROP

No noise yet in 1DX Mark at ISO 400. Slight noise in 7D Mark2 which are visible only when you do a 100% zoom in.

At ISO 800

ISO 800 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 800 CROP

At ISO 800, Still no signs of noise in Canon 1DX Mark II. Noise is now getting more visible in the form of grains in 7D Mark II.

At ISO 1600

ISO 1600 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 1600 CROP

Slight noise visible at 1600 ISO on the photo from 1DX Mark II. Noise having some serious effect on photo from the high end half frame Canon body. It can still be removed by denoising software like Topaz Denoise or Noise Ninja.

At ISO 3200

ISO 3200 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 3200 CROP

The grains are getting more visible now in the case of the high end full frame Canon body. But, still manageable. For Canon 7D Mark II this is the maximum limiting usable ISO value. You can still recover a good amount of details after noise removal.

At ISO 6400

ISO 6400 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 6400 CROP

Picture still looks good for 1DX Mark II. The noise can be removed in the noise reduction software.

At ISO 12800

ISO 12800 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 12800 CROP

You can shoot at ISO 12800 if you are using a Canon 1DX Mark II. Keep this as the maximum ISO limiting value. I don’t recommend shooting at this ISO if your camera body is 7D Mark II. The picture has become more grainy now.

At ISO 25600

ISO 25600 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 25600 CROP

I don’t think you can remove the noise on the photo from Canon 7D Mark II. Picture from the half frame canon body is almost unusable.

At ISO 51200

ISO 51200 Canon 1DX Mark ii Vs Canon 7D Mark ii

ISO 51200 CROP

A massive noise reduction would be required if you want to use the image from Canon 1DX Mark II shot at ISO 51200. There would be a heavy reduction in picture quality after removing the noise. The image from 7D Mark II is full of grains. There is no point in taking this photo for noise removal.

At ISO 102400

ISO 102400 Canon 1DX Mark ii

102400 ISO CANON 1DX MARK II

Now it is quite clear that why Canon has not enabled the H1 ISO mode by default. There is no use if you bump the ISO to 102400.

At ISO 204800

ISO 204800 Canon 1DX Mark ii

204800 ISO CANON 1DX MARK II

No point in taking a shot at ISO 204800. You will need a massive noise reduction to remove the noise and the image would look flat without any details if you do the noise removal. Color noise are becoming more visible.

At ISO 409600

ISO 409600 Canon 1DX Mark ii

409600 ISO CANON 1DX MARK II

At ISO 409600 picture is unusable.

Canon 7D Mark II has ISO values ranging from 100 to 12800 by default. There are two High ISO values 25600 (H1) and 51200 (H2). These 2 values are not enabled by default. user can enable it if required. From the above sample shots at these higher values it is quite clear that the photos are useless at these ISO values. In the case of Canon 1DX Mark II there are three High ISO values. They are 102400 (H1), 204800 (H2) and 409600 (H3). These values are not enabled by default. If you want too shoot something for the record purpose (very very low lighting conditions) then you can use these ISO settings.

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