Get ready for a “Magic” Canon 5D Mark iii with Dual ISO’s!

We’ve long loved Magic Lantern for it’s ability to do amazing things with the Canon 5D Mark ii, and they have really stepped up their game with the Canon 5D Mark iii (And to an extent the Canon 7D.).  According to the Magic Lantern forum page detailing the new Dual ISO firmware, the new Magic Lantern will improve the Canon 5D Mark iii with an interesting use of a feature of the Dual ISO sensor that most haven’t heard about.

Here’s a trick that samples half of the sensor at ISO 100 and the other half at ISO 1600, for example. If you mix these two, you can get almost the entire dynamic range the sensor is capable of (around 14 stops). 5D3/7D only.

There are no motion artifacts; not even a difference in motion blur for the two exposures. So, it works well for fast moving subjects.

Let’s see what the samples look like before I think about this, however, the Dynamic range in the image below is very, very impressive!

Dual ISO massive dynamic range improvement for 5D3 and 7D a

This seems really groovy.  It also works for video as well (5D3 only).

Bottom-left: ISO 100. Top-right: ISO 100/1600.
Credits: Luke Neumann.

DUAL ISO - Photo Blog

There is a Warning, however:

This code changes low-level sensor parameters. In the technical doc you can see how this method messes with the feedback loop for optical black, for example. Therefore, it’s safe to assume it can fry the sensor or do other nasty things. My 5D3 is still alive after roughly one week of playing with this, but that’s not a guarantee.

We don’t pay for repairs. Use it at your own risk.

Check it out and let me know what you think in the comments below.