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Thanks for posting this strawman - it is very useful to get direct feedback to find out if it lives up to the hype or not, I have been avidly waiting for this! But it might still suit my purpose (more action type shots) so I'll wait and see...
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What of the over features John
Thanks Strawman. Yes for sports is it good. I tested mine at a race today and got great sharp well saturated images at ISO200. Not put any up yet as am peeved with race, drove an 1 1/2 round trip for in the end only 22 riders, so likely no sales and one of them swore at me as he went past. I have complained to the organisers about him
I can imagine for sport it is very good. The Af felt fast, and the lower high ISO noise will no doubt help too, so I hope it works out for you. Sorry about being sworn at ;-(
Features wise, I like the thought of live view but would need to spend a bit of time with the manual as neither me nor the shop people could find the menu to turn it on And as I said it was fast and that could be worth a lot. Plus it did fit the hand well.
My personal priority would be more resolution, a better viewfinder (i.e bigger) and a bigger buffer than my current camera. And lets not forget dynamic range.
Then the second level are things like bigger LCD, spot meter, and improved metering, plus 3 colour levels.
Live view, let me play with it and I will tell you. It has not been high on my list of wants but as I read of people using it I get intrigued. On a compact camera I always felt I wanted an optical viewfinder to feel involved, so did not rate the live view features. It could be I have missed something.
Of course the converse is I should be pleased with how well the camera I have performs.
Went to give it a good try out today but hell of a breeze blowing
First thing that is noticeable is the lack of shutter noise compared to the 20D
Didn't get the normal glares from the twitchers in the hide at Stanwick as is the norm when the 20D kicks in
Has a great feel to it so much so that have decided to leave the grip on the 20D
The large screen is a bonus as well
Quote: strawman wrote: Live view, let me play with it and I will tell you. It has not been high on my list of wants but as I read of people using it I get intrigued. On a compact camera I always felt I wanted an optical viewfinder to feel involved, so did not rate the live view features. It could be I have missed something
My prediction is that as dslr cameras move inexorably into the centre ground of camera sales, live view will become the norm in future. It's a feature that many associate with the point and shoot brigade as they mutely hold their piece of silver hardware at arms length to get the definitive shot of some inane situation in front of them - chuckle....sounds like my portfolio
So why, if this is the case, has the 1D range got live view? Because it's a facility worth having as follows -
Live view can be an enhancement during astro and underwater photography and for spectacle wearers. It also enables remote, wireless operation whilst viewing the image on a laptop. Individual focus points can be magnified up to 10x. Shutter release time lag and mechanical noise are reduced in live view mode when using mirror lock up. Live view also offers more precise focusing during close up shots as well as providing a 100% field of view to the observer.
There're no doubt more good reasons to have live view but I expect those mentioned above are sufficient to merit inclusion on a dslr.
Nicely pointed out Jon.
Its something some of us have been using and seeing the benefits of for quite a while, others regarded it as nothing more than a gimick
After playing with my new toy over the weekend I am impressed with it.
The liveview is a good feature, with the AF button allowing autofocus too, which you couldn't do on my 1D MKiii. The live exposure histogram is excellent. It also has a live RGB histogram but for my uses I cannot see how it can help at the "taking the picture" stage.
ISO noise doesn't seem any different to my 20D, but that was acceptable anyway.
Quieter shutter is a bonus, as is the faster fps. I will also be getting the alternative focussing screen, which will be good.
Dissappointed that you can not have an average of spot meter readings, as you can with the 1Ds.
Larger LCD screen is excellent for viewing images but I am concerned that it might be vunerable.
I spent a lot of time taking test shots of colour and text, with the 20D, 40D and 1D at ISO100, 800 and 1600 and to be honest I thought the 40D were the best.
I saved them as 16bit TIFFS with no post production and spent ages zooming up 500%. To be honest there is not THAT much difference. Files sizes are about 50Mb each so not the sort of thing I can post up.
Peter I think we are finding about the same. Compared to a 20D, it sounds like the 40D offers a slight increase in resolution and about the same level of noise performance. Compared to the 10D/300D there is a big improvement in noise at high ISO and a small increase in resolution at low ISO.
But there are features of the camera that are a big upgrade, so is the biggest change the 40D brings is improved ability to take photo's under a variety of conditions rather than absolute improvement in image quality.
Having looked afresh at A3 size prints, I am now wondering just how much resolution I actualy need.
Quote: Compared to a 20D, it sounds like the 40D offers a slight increase in resolution and about the same level of noise performance
what a disappointment
I do a lot of close up and have been having some difficulty focusing accurately with my 350D. What are people's thoughts on the live view with regards to more precise focusing? Does it work well? The screen is only 230,000 pixels...considering Nikon's D300 has 93,000....
It depends what your focusing problem is. Is it that you try to autofocus and it is not correct, or is it that you have trouble seeing the image in the viewfinder well enough to focus the image.
If it is the first, then adopting a manual focusing technique would help. If the latter then yes it may help, but it will depend on ambient light levels. as for LCD accuracy, you need to see one to try.
and the Nikon will cost half as much again over the cost of the 40D, so it should be better. Plus there is the cost of selling your canon macro lense and others. you do have a proper macro lens do you?
So it depends on what your problem is. Sorry.
Quote: what a disappointment
That was my initial reaction, but when I thought about it, it is retailing for about the same price as my 300D was new, and its handling and features are a mile on, so this camera will take photo's with greater sucess than mine in difficult situations. Plus it should be more durable.
and at some time the law of diminishing returns must hit, there are only so many photon's out there
I focus manually (although I did try autofocus just to compare). Either I'm not sure if I've got my focus precise or else I think I have but it turns out soft. I've set dioptre and still have this problem. It could just be that macro is tricky because you need to be spot on with the focus.
The 40D, in addition to Live View, has interchangeable viewfinder screens and I'm wondering if one of these might be an improvement on the 350D.
As you say, I'll just need to go and try one out for myself. As good as Nikon is, I have Canon lenses and don't want to go to the expense of having to sell them and invest in new ones.
And macro is so difficult because it is so sensitive to movement as well. I found using a cable release or mirror lock helps too, as the bounce as you press the shutter on tripod can be so big in macro work. That 10x crop in with live view is said to be good for this. Plus I read you can place the zoom in point anywhere on the LCD and you can make the metering move with it also.
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