Photographs of New York ’cause that’s where I live

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Canon 50D Announced

29 August, 2008 (17:39)

Here’s the dpreview.com preview of the Canon 50D (pre-production).  Uh, I’ll take one.

You can already pre-order them on Amazon.com  (Amazon says they’ll have it Aug. 26th) but they don’t have it yet.

- New sensor (15.1 mp).  This gives you a 13 x 19 (approx.) inch print at 240 dpi without any interpolation.  (Uh, I’ll take one).

- Street Price seems to be about $1400

- Higher resolution LCD

- Uses same battery as 40D (thank you).

- Uses CF cards (thank you again)

- Has some sort of firmware to make corrections for vignetting of Canon lenses.  Hmmm, vignetting with full-frame lenses on a cropped sensor. I honestly haven’t run into this yet with the couple of lenses I have.

- Micro-adjusting of auto-focus by lens or for all lenses.  That’s interesting.  I suppose that if the camera was ever going to be converted for Infrared that would be useful.

- Less noise, and higher ISO speeds:  12,800 (100-3200 standard range) - (Uh - wow).

- There’s an indicator in the viewfinder when Highlight Priority is on (good idea)

- They say that it’s sealed better against weather than the 40D.

There’s a bunch of other stuff, but these are the ones that interested me.

I probably won’t be able to afford one for a while, plus I’m doing so much shooting with the IR XT right now that it doesn’t matter.  But frankly - they’ve got everything that I wanted and more in this one.  It’s hard to imagine what else you could ask for - but I guess others have their own wish list.

Speaking of infrared - I did some tests with the XT IR (I guess that’s what I’ll call it and the 70-300mm lens) at night with the IR flash.  Surprisingly, there was enough light to shoot a subject that was about 3/4’s of a block away (ASA 800), shooting at the long end, with no shake (remember the lens also has Image Stab.)

However, the XT (compared to the 40d) is terrible at night focusing.  You really have to find something with some detail on it that’s partly lit, and then move to your real subject.  It would be a fine combination for shooting at night around Times Square.

And true, they’ve got that strobe thing for that type of shooting but a) I’ve already got the IR flash either in the hot shoe, or on a cord that’s in the hot-shoe and b) I wouldn’t advise using that strobe focus for unobstrusive shooting.

So anyway - thanks Canon and thanks Nikon for giving them competition.


« A Walk in the Park

 Gallery of Infrared Images »


Comment from Craig M. Nisnewitz
Time: August 29, 2008, 6:49 pm

Nikon also released the D 90 which is the little brother to the D 300.
A lot of new stuff out there to choose from.

P.S. rumors are out about a lower cost digital M 8. That would be great.

Comment from Elliot
Time: August 30, 2008, 12:14 pm

Nikon is seeding the fruits of its high-end AF technology into its higher-volume cameras. As imaging-resource described the D90’s AF:

“Though Face Detection is helpful in Live view mode, its utility goes further, as it’s now an integral part of Nikon’s Scene Recognition System (SRS). Thanks to the Nikon D90’s 420-pixel matrix metering sensor, the SRS can combine color metering with autofocus sensor data and tune white balance and exposure with a particular bias toward getting faces exposed properly. In theory, this should also include making sure the Nikon D90 focuses on an eye rather than a nose or forehead. If true in practice, this is quite an advance. Face detection even comes into play in i-TTL Flash control. The Nikon D90’s 11-point phase-detect AF system is arrayed in a diamond pattern and includes 3D focus tracking like the D3 and D300.”
Now the 50D seems very nice, although I am disappointed by the lack of advancement in autofocus and in flash (where Nikon has long had a lead). By most other measures it does have a winner — 14-bit capture (12-bit for D90), AF microadjustment (only in D300 and better for Nikon), support for UDMA CF (again, only in D300 or better), built-in vignette correction (previously only a software feature in Canon’s DPP. Anbd they finally brought the LCD up to competitive spec, with greater levels of magnification.

In terms of market success, Canon had better reposition the pricing of the 50D, however. You can get the D90 for $999 and the street price of the D300 has dropped to $1630 at some reputable online places. With people raving (and ranting) about the D90’s video, many consumers in the marketplace will have a hard time deciding that it’s worth $400 more for 3MP and no video.

Comment from Oliver
Time: August 30, 2008, 3:05 pm

Same chip size, more pixels and ISO 12,800…it sounds like they made some major advances there!
And speaking of night focusing: This is a bit off-topic, but I was wondering what your experiences with the Sigma 30mm at night are. Does it focus well?

Comment from Dave Beckerman
Time: August 30, 2008, 3:10 pm

It focuses well with the 40D at night; but not with the XT. Same with my Canon 50mm f1.4

Comment from Oliver
Time: August 30, 2008, 3:20 pm

Sounds good. I might go ahead and buy the Sigma then.

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