Originally posted by Ann:
I am wondering why people are trying to push someone who has stated she wants to shoot birds into a full frame camera? If you've never shot birds, you'd be shocked at how small and far away they are. With a APS-C sensor, there are a number of $1-2000 lens/teleconverter combos that will get her close enough to the birds to do something useful. 100-400, 300/4 with 1.4xTC, etc. Heck, even a lowly 70-300 can be used in a pinch. To get that kind of reach with FF, the price for the lenses quadruples.
I do understand what you're saying Ann, and I agree to at least some degree.
However, with that being said, image quality is king in my book, and the 5D / 1D series deliver quality that I've never seen in a crop-sensor body. (of course, the same can be said for the results from a medium format Phase One vs. DSLRs as well...)
In the end, a used 5D might be a little too old for her, but maybe not - the 6D is a steal, and a used 1DmkIII can be bought pretty reasonably as well.
Again, I mention these bodies because, to me, image quality matters more than any other single factor.
Speaking of lenses, as you mention, it's funny you took it the direction you did, because for me the exact opposite is true, my 1D/5D tends to deal with lower quality glass FAR FAR better than a high pixel density body like the 7D will, larger photosites equal better quality and a somewhat lowered need for amazingly fine glass.
In the end, I'm sure she'll be happy with whatever she gets, but I suspect eventually she'll desire full frame or a 1D series body, especially if she ever gets to borrow or use one for a bit.