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Nikon D4 vs D800 vs D7100 vs F5 vs Canon 1D X vs 5DMKIII: DSLR Silent Mode Shootout

Did you know many of todays cameras have a “silent” or “quiet” mode for taking pictures? These modes are meant to be used in situations where you want to keep the sound of the camera to a minimum.

Being that I shoot a lot of concerts and generally in places where there is a lot of sound I do not find myself needing this mode. I can say that there are times during weddings that I would have liked to have my Nikon D4 be a little more quiet.

I thought now would be a good time to do a “Silent Mode” shootout between the Nikon D4, Nikon D800, Nikon D7100, Nikon F5, Canon 1D X and Canon 5D MKIII.

All I know is that the pro bodies tend to sound like tanks when you take one picture let alone motor drive through 10-15.

Keep in mind this is not a scientific experiment. I simply took pictures with each camera and decided which ones made the loudest sound or the quietest.

I also want to point out that the Nikon D4 does have a truly silent mode where the mirror flips up and you can take 24 FPS in JPEG to capture images. This test was more to hear the sounds that the cameras really did make.

In my opinion the true winner by a mile was the Canon 5D MKIII. It was the only camera that was noticeably quieter than its regular mode as well as capable of shooting multiple silent frames per second.

Have you used silent mode, what are your thoughts?