How To Install Canon E1 Hand Strap

This is for those who are curious as to how to install the Canon E1 hand strap onto their Canon EOS 1D, 1D Mark II, 1D Mark IIn, 1Ds, 1Ds Mark II, 1D Mark III, 1Ds Mark III, 5D with BG-E4 grip, 20D/30D/40D/50D with battery grip.

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The Latest Addition To My Photography Gear: The Amazing 1Ds Mark II

For a $4,000 difference between the 1D, the 1Ds' lettering is gold plated.
For a $4,000 difference between the 1D, the 1Ds emblems are gold plated

Sooo, if you’ve been following me on Twitter, you may have noticed my mention of a “new toy”. Well, the wait’s over, my new toy is a camera. Not any camera, but Canon’s top-top of the line, the much sought after and highly desired Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II. Up until August 2007, it had been the highest megapixel camera for a full frame (or even cropped sensors) 35mm digital sensor. Introduced in September 2004, it took the photography world by storm offering the most megapixel at the time in a full frame sensor. The Canon EOS 1Ds (mark I) was the first dSLR to feature a full frame sensor with the Kodak DCN-14n following suite.

All this for only eight thousand dollars ($8,000). So, yea. Quite out of reach even for many professionals photographers. Continue reading The Latest Addition To My Photography Gear: The Amazing 1Ds Mark II

Canon L Series Lenses

This was a free two hour class offered by Canon and Keeble & Shuchat with Jennifer Wu about Canon’s L lenses by Jim Rose and nature photography tips from Jennifer. I originally heard about this from Jim when he came to COBA to discuss about CPS membership. As an added treat, Canon brought twenty four L lenses, including the Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM and the Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS USM, and five bodies (three 1D Mark IIIs, one 1Ds Mark III, one Canon XSi, and a Canon EOS 5D) for everyone to try. Also Jim brought a pre-production Canon EOS 50D with the new Canon EF 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS zoom lens. Continue reading Canon L Series Lenses

Canon EOS 1D Review

Joe Schmo: Hey that’s a very professional looking camera there!
Me: Thank you, yes it is.
Joe Schmo: How many megapixels is it?
Me: 4.
Joe Schmo: Wow 40?!
Me: No, 4 megapixels total.
Joe Schmo: That doesn’t sound very professional at all. My little point and shoot has 12 megapixels! I think you overpaid for that thing. Continue reading Canon EOS 1D Review

National Geographic 2477 Bag Review

So after finding the perfect shoulder camera/laptop bag, the National Geographic NG-2475, and then having to return it because it couldn’t fit my 15.4″ MacBook Pro, fortunately Bogen (yes, the same company that makes tripods) makes a slightly larger version: the National Geographic NG-2477. The new bag is a few inches wider and is identical in design and layout to the NG-2475 except for the buckles and the addition of luggage straps to easily attach to a rolling luggage handle. Continue reading National Geographic 2477 Bag Review

Canon EOS 1Ds Review

I borrowed my friend’s Canon EOS 1Ds Mark I to try for a little while to see what it was all about. While it is not like it’s newer and better son, the Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II, it definitely is no slouch either. Let me repeat, the Canon EOS 1Ds Mark I is still a very capable and useful SLR today even though it’s nearly 6 years old. Continue reading Canon EOS 1Ds Review

Canon CP-E4, An Inital Review

The Canon CP-E4 battery pack is an essential item for any photographer who needs fast flash recharge and successive flash fires such as wedding or event photography. This battery pack is designed to plug into the Canon 550 EX/580 EX/580 EX II via a proprietary cable. What the battery pack does is decrease your flash recycle time by providing more juice.

I recently picked up one because I use flash a lot and need it ready to fire at any time and sometimes ready to fire off a burst. Continue reading Canon CP-E4, An Inital Review

Canon EOS 1D Mark II versus Canon EOS Rebel 400D/XTi

You’re probably reading the title and thinking, no way, not even close, not a fair comparison. That’s like comparing apples to oranges. I would definitely agree. But what if you had some money to spare, found a great deal on a 1D Mark II and was wondering, is it worth it or should I just get the XTi? Let me save you guys the trouble of having to read the entire post if you are in a hurry: despite the Canon EOS Rebel 400D/XTi utilizing many new Canon advancements, it still does not come close to the 4 year old Canon EOS 1D Mark II.

While these two SLRs are not even close to being in the same class (amateur stepping up from point-and-shoot camera vs. pro shooter), it’s still fun to just to compare. So let’s lay it out in an easy to read table (information compiled from dpreview.com):

SLR Cameras Canon EOS 1D Mark II Canon EOS Rebel 400D/XTi Winner
Year Introduced January 29, 2004 August 24, 2006
Sensor Size 28.7 x 19.1 mm 22.2 x 14.8 mm 1D Mark II
Viewfinder 100%, 0.72x magnification 95%, 0.8x magnification 1D Mark II
Max Resolution 3504×2336 3888×2592 400D/XTi
Megapixels 8.2 10.2 400D/XTi
ISO rating 100-1600 in 1/3 stops, with 50 and 3200 as options 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600 1D Mark II
Auto Focus type TTL-AREA-SIR 45 focus point CMOS sensor Multi-BASIS TTL 9 focus point CMOS sensor 1D Mark II
Max shutter 1/8000 sec 1/4000 sec 1D Mark II
Metering 21 area eval, partial, spot (center, AF point, multi-spot), center weighted average 35 area eval, center weighted, partial 1D Mark II
Crop Factor 1.3 1.6 1D Mark II
Continuous Drive 8.5 fps for 40 JPEG or 20 RAW 3 fps for 27 JPEG or 10 RAW 1D Mark II
Storage Types Compact Flash (Type I or II), SD card, and SDHC (with latest firmware) Compact Flash (Type I or II) 1D Mark II
LCD 2.0 inches 2.5 inches 400D/XTi
LCD Pixels 230,000 230,000 Tie
Battery Canon Ni-MH NP-E3 (12v 1650mAh) battery Canon Lithium-Ion NB-2LH (7.4v 720mAh) battery 1D Mark II
Weight 1565 g (55.2 oz) 556 g (19.6 oz)
Dimensions 156 x 158 x 80 mm (6.1 x 6.2 x 3.2 in) 127 x 94 x 65 mm (5 x 3.7 x 2.6 in)

It’s pretty obvious, side-by-side, which is the superior SLR: the 1D. There are a couple areas where the 400D/XTi has an advantage over the 1D, but it’s a slight advantage such as the LCD size. While the 400D/XTi has a bigger LCD (2.5 inch), the 1D has as better resolution screen. The most noticeable difference is megapixels. For those concerned with megapixel sizes, the 400D/XTi has nearly 2MP more than the 1D. But you have to consider from a relative stand point, that 8.2 MP on a 1.3 crop factor sensor versus 10.1 MP on a 1.6 crop factor sensor will result in lower noise. The pixel size on the 1D Mark II is 8.2µm versus 5.7µm (figures from the-digital-picture.com) meaning that the 1D Mark II is able to capture more light per pixel resulting in higher sensitivity meaning less noise in the picture. That’s why more mega pixels is not always better and the Canon EOS 5D has such fantastic low noise capabilities because of it’s full frame sensor with 12.8 megapixels.

So Which Camera Is Right For Me?

Unless you make serious money from photography or you just make serious money, I would recommend the Canon EOS Rebel 400D/XTi (or the newly released Canon EOS Rebel 450D/XSi). The 400D/XTi and 450D/XSi has some very useful features and should not be easily discounted as merely an amateur camera as Peter Gregg found out. Read his informative post about the Canon EOS 400D/XTi as a sleeper camera on his website, abetterbouncecard.com. It’s small and portable and can utilize Canon EF and EF-S mount lenses, unlike the 1D only taking EF mount lenses. The battery is small and lasts forever and is cross usable with other Canon point-and-shoot cameras. It will do a decent job for amateur sports, event photography, party photography, etc.

If you need the serious frame rates because you’re shooting sports, professional auto racing, etc., then definitely spring for the 1D. The prices for the 1D are pretty good, if you can get a good condition used one for under $2k, it’s definitely worth doing. The 1D Mark II may seem old, but it’s still performs as good if not better than a lot of the new SLRs right now. The Canon EOS 1D Mark IIn is also worth considering if you can find it for a good price. I generally see some once in a blue moon at BH Photo’s Used section and occasionally on Craigslist. There aren’t really too many major differences between the Mark II and Mark IIn other than bigger LCD (2.5 inch vs. 2 inch), you can write different file types to either card, slightly faster Digic II CPU, and a few other minor things.

My Dream Comes True At 8.5 frames per second

I was able to realize one of my long held photography dreams on Saturday. It has been something I have long had my eyes on but no justification to purchase, but that’s now things have changed. As you can probably surmise from the picture, what I’m talking about is a camera. But it’s not just any camera, it is the Camera. Many amateur and pro photographers dream of owning a fine tool such as this, and as of Saturday, I join the ranks of 1D owners. That’s right folks, I am now a proud new owner of a Canon EOS 1D Mark II.

I know some of you may be wondering, why not a Canon 1D Mark III or Mark IIn for that matter? Well, it’s simple, it’s still hard at the moment to justify the cost of the Canon 1D Mark III (~$4,000) and for the price I paid for the Mark II versus what I would have had to pay for the Mark IIn, it was was simply too good a deal to pass up. Especially since the Mark II and Mark IIn are virtually identical except for a few key differences ( it’s like the difference between the Canon EOS 20D versus the Canon EOS 30D), they are one and the same.

Initial test shots and some light use with the Canon EOS 1D Mark II, all I have to say is that it is absolutely amazing. You don’t know how nice it is to have 45 AF points versus 9 on my Canon XTi. Even though this camera is about 4 years old now (first announced in February 2004), it still performs better than a majority of cameras currently out on the market. How many other cameras can do 8.5 frames per second or faster? To my knowledge, only 3 other cameras: Canon EOS 1D Mark IIn, Canon EOS 1D Mark III, and the Nikon D3. I did like my dad’s Canon EOS 5D to a certain extent, but I’m loving the 1D much more.

In case anyone is wonder, yes, I am still keeping my Canon EOS Rebel XTi, it’s still a very handy and versatile tool. And, yes, there is a very specific reason I purchased the 1D, which I’ll be announcing very shortly. As I get a chance to play with the 1D Mark II more and get more acclimated, I’ll post a review.