Here is a selection of accessories for the 5D Mark III that may help you get the perfect shot or make your photography more convenient and fun. First are two general-use lenses that are good value for money; the EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L IS USM and the 50mm f/1.4 USM II. Upgrading your current or just buying an extra memory card can help speed everything up and mean you don’t need to delete pictures in the field. Battery grips are so popular people are asking why they aren’t built onto cameras in the first place, and a flash gives you more options. I’ve chosen specific models of accessories and tried to choose mid-range models but suggested either the next step up or down in the line to suit budgets and preferences.
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L IS USM
A zoom telephoto lens is a staple of any lens collection. While everyone and their dog has 24-105mm; a longer lens, such as up to 200mm, is an asset worth investing in. Higher focal lengths are still very adaptable, while being a must for landscape photography they can still be used ‘on the ground’ for things like portraits. Zooming on distant objects emphasises their size and higher focal lengths can really bring out closer objects. The Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L IS USM is an affordable, but still good quality 70-200mm lens. A maximum aperture of f/4.0 means this lens is relatively portable too. This lens also features 3 stops of image stabilization. Allowing you to minimise camera shake or raise the shutter speed, but this does not help if the subject is moving. You can of course upgrade to the formidable 70-200mm f/2.8, this lens is highly recommended.
Canon 50mm f/1.4 USM
Closest to the human field of vision, 50mm is versatile and can be used for just about any type of shot. Another advantage of 50mm is they are the most affordable fast lenses. So are a great way to add a high aperture lens to your collection without spending a huge amount. The Canon 50mm f/1.4 USM is the famous f/1.8’s big brother. So the quality is excellent. The 50mm f/1.4 is obviously faster and is also generally a better constructed lens; housing, sharpness, blur etc. are all improved. This makes the 50mm f/1.4 an applicable lens for the 5D III where the f/1.8 might feel a bit out of place. You can of course upgrade to the 50 f/1.2 but this is quite expensive so only a no-brainer if you?re addicted to 50mm. There are a lot of 3rd party options for this focal length so manufacturers such as Sigma are worth researching too if you feel the Canon f/1.4 is not right for you.
Transcend 32GB SDHC Class 10 Memory Card
If you’re a fan of looking at your pictures after taking them then you will have already bought a memory card, but you may still have room to upgrade significantly. You know that memory cards come in different sizes, 2GB, 16GB, etc., but they also differ by write-speed. This is the maximum speed your camera can save the picture to your card. A picture taken with a camera like the 5D III can be very large; causing a delay while the file is written. That delay is lengthened if you take a burst of shots, as you will have many pictures to save. Something else to consider is the brand, memory cards come in different qualities and degrade over time so buying a reputable brand like Transcend or SanDisk is recommended.
If you are running out of space on your card or think you may have a slow card, upgrading can make shooting a lot more enjoyable. The Transcend 32GB SDHC Class 10 Memory Card has a good balance of price, speed and capacity from a reputable brand. For double the storage capacity, buy two.
BG-E11 Battery Grip
Most people swear by battery grips, and those who don’t have probably never tried one. The BG-E11 grip was released with the 5D III and is best suited for it. A battery grip basically has three advantages, adding another handle, more buttons and more battery. A battery grip adds a handle to the bottom of the camera, when rotated to portrait, the handle mysteriously moves to the side, making portrait shooting a lot more comfortable. In addition to more grip, the handle also has a couple of additional controls that are accessible in portrait orientation. Battery grips also house extra batteries; doubling the battery life of your camera. The final advantage is making your camera look more badass by adding size, weight, buttons and dials.
An extra battery is probably the most useful thing you could buy (apart from lenses!). There are so many situations it will save you -if you forget to recharge, if you go camping or if you crazy shooting all day. With only one battery you always run the risk that you will be without power making your camera completely useless.
Speedlite 600EX-RT flash
Unless you shoot something like exclusively landscapes then a flash is something you should really get. A camera is a tool for capturing light, so having another to create and play with light opens a lot of creative options. Not only useful in lowlight, a wireless flash like the 600EX-RT allows you to illuminate your subject at any angle; making it something you should just about always carry. The 600EX-RT is Canon’s flagship flash so has all the bells and whistles for a rich experience. The biggest advantage of the 600 is that it uses radio rather than infrared to communicate. Infrared only works in line of sight while radio will go through objects, allowing you to place the flash behind you or your subject without using some crazy trick. Radio also allows two-way communication allowing the 600EX-RT to do all sorts of things such as, for example, tell the camera when it has recycled. If the 600EX-RT seems too expensive, the cheaper 430EX II is still an extremely powerful tool that will keep amateurs satisfied.
This T-shirt is not just a fashion accessory, but also a great conversation starter. What is bokeh? Is it a band? What does it mean to be ‘Bokehlicious!’? If your friends are confused, be prepared to explain it and also show off your photography talents! The Bokehlicious! T-shirt is a must-have for every EOS 5D III owner.
Writing a list like this is never going to be perfect, so let’s keep working on it! What is your EOS 5D III never seen without and why?