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Fotografie: Canon EOS 40D - panic buy!

Copyright by Michael Bockhorst 21 05 09 - 12:53
Why buy 2 bodies of the Canon EOS 40D? Why Canon? Why a 10 Megapixel body where 16 Megapixel are available?

Why Canon?

I am used to use Canon cameras and they have served me well in the last 2 1/2 decades. My main photographic subjects are slow scenes without any brutal action. If you are a sports photographer a Nikon system might be the better choice. But if you are interested in photographic output which is near to conventional film, go for a canon if you are used to the philosophy of the controls of Canon cameras.

The second reason is that I have 4 lenses for Canon I am very satisfied with:
  • EF 2.8 / 24 mm which is a 38mm Equiv lens. Great angle of view: Boring itself but a challenge to work with. The view is very natural. The lens delivers contrasty and sharp images from wide open to f/11. Chromatic aberrations are easily corrected. No dust pump!
  • EF-S 2.8 / 60 mm Macro (96mm Equiv). Universal lens for 95 percent of landscape and street photography, portrait and tabletop. And a great macro lens to. Sharp images from wide open, great contrast, great bokeh, fast autofocus, moderate receptibility to flare and so on. A near perfect lens. No dust pumping!
  • EF 2.0 / 100 mm (160mm Equiv). Very versatile mid telephoto lens. At f/2.0 the lens delivers very high contrast and good sharpnes. Longitudinal color aberrations are strongly visible at the borders of highlights. From f / 2.8 on all parameters are excellent. Due to only 6 lens groups the flare resistance of that lens is great. Between f /4.0 and f / 11 you have a tack sharp lens which shows especially fine and complicated textures as they are. Bokeh is great and it is a joy to concentrate the viewers eye to subjects located in the narrow field of depth.
  • EF 4.0 / 70-200 mm (110-320mm Equiv). Great contrast rich, sharp lens under all conditions execept the closest focus distance (1.2 m) @ 200mm - stop down 1 value and be happy. The main reason not to use a full frame camera now: There is no 100-300 mm f 4.0 zoom on the market which weights just 750 grams! And that will never happen due to the laws of optics, mechanics and the available optical formulations.

Why the 40D and not the 50D?

All my lenses fit perfectly to 8 or 10 megapixel resolution sensor in the APS-C size format. If I do everything right and some of the lenses are stopped down a little bit. 16 megapixels of a Canon EOS 50D will likely show my imperfection and that of the lenses. I am not interested in recording artifacts from me and my lenses with my cameras to increase the file size of my (RAW-)files.

Another reason is my style of photography: Use - if possible - available light. Smaller pixel sizes caused by higher megapixel numbers on the same sensor size lead to unclear pixels. Just here I see an advantage staying below or at 10 megapixels.

Price. For 1 EOS 50D I can buy 1.6 bodies of 40s. Or paying 35 percent more I got two identical bodies for using two primes without changing lenses. I prefer using primes ... still waiting for an EF 2.8 / 200 mm IS USM Macro to replace my tele zoom! Two bodies means to have a spare body onboard. A spare data card and a spare battery on hand. And perhaps, in 5 or 10 years, I will make one functional body of them both.

Up to now ...

... I am glad with my two 40D bodies and that I made the decision to invest a lot of money into it. My next body will include movie abilities with manual override functions and an articulated screen. Ever go to full format? Only if I see a strong need for my photographic ambition!

Just wayting for a EF-S 2.8 / 10 mm prime with a high correction and the mentioned 200 mm stabilized Macro - hopefully Canon will read this!

UPDATE 2010-01-09: Gave up to wait for an EF-S 2.8 / 10 mm prime ;-)