Thursday, February 24, 2005
The high initial price for the Canon 580EX Flash has dropped. B&H and Adorama have the imported version available now as well.
Wednesday, February 23, 2005
Canon Europe CPS has posted Issue 11 of their online magazine. Included is a good but not-too-technical article explaining E-TTL II.
The Canon EOS 350D Digital Rebel XT SLR Camera is available for pre-order here ...
There is likely to be a shortage of this new, in-demand, affordable Digital SLR for some time. Order now if you want one soon.
Thursday, February 17, 2005
Lots of big news from Canon today including the announcement of a new Digital SLR - the Canon EOS 350D Digital Rebel XT SLR Camera. Generally speaking, the Digital Rebel 350D is to the Canon 20D what the Digital Rebel 300D is to the Canon 10D. And generally speaking some more, the Digital Rebel 350D is to the Digital Rebel 300D what the Canon 20D is to the Canon 10D. The 350D appears to be a healthy upgrade from the 300D. The Press Release is long but I highlighted some of what I considered important points.
Many of us are anxious to hear new Canon lens announcements. Well, Canon has introduced one, but I doubt there will be a lot of people excited over the new Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens. It should be a nice lens, but is not much different in price the already excellent Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 USM Macro Lens - and only works on an EF-S capable digital SLR body.
I haven't seen a formal announcement of the Canon EF-S 18-55 II, but one is pictured on the new Digital Rebel 350D. Any changes made may be minor - and not worthy of a press release.
Canon has also announced (in the same PR as the EF-S 60mm) the Canon Long-Distance Infrared Wireless Remote Controller LC-5.
The Canon PowerShot SD500 and SD400 Digital Cameras were announced today. The press release has the details.
Various other Canon products were introduced including digital video cameras and printers.
Tuesday, February 15, 2005
More about these shots ...
The main light was provided by a Canon 580EX Flash fired into a Photogenic Eclipse 60" Umbrella. The background light was from a Canon 550EX Flash. Both flashes were triggered by a Canon ST-E2 Transmitter. The background is a very large piece of white muslin fabric. The background flash is not large/powerful enough to make the entire background completely white - Adobe Photoshop to the rescue.
The Epson Stylus Photo R1800 Printer has been introduced. This is likely to be one of the top photo printers when it becomes available in March.
Monday, February 14, 2005
Happy Valentines Day!
The Canon EOS 20Da Digital SLR has been introduced in Japan.
The Canon EOS 20Da Digital SLR has been introduced in Japan. Unless you can read Japanese, you will need a language translation tool (Google Language Tools for example) to do the translation. Here is the Google-translated link.
Here is some of what I understand the Canon EOS 20Da to be all about ...
The Canon EOS 20Da is a Canon 20D specifically suited for celestial/astro and infrared photography. A is for "A"stro? The same sensor used in the Canon 20D is utilized in the 20Da. The same 1.6x field of view crop factor is present.
High ISO noise noise performance has been improved. Second generation on-chip noise reduction circuitry has been employed to reduce both random and fixed pattern noise. It also sounds like the long exposure noise reduction has been moved to a custom function.
Similar to a point and shoot digital camera, the LCD has a live view mode - which allows focusing on the LCD. I believe this is made possible by a partially transmissive mirror. Older electronical manual focusing lenses (such as the Canon EF 85mm f/1.2 L Lens) are not compatible with the live view mode manual focusing.
The infrared-cutting low-pass filter ("hot mirror") present on most digital cameras has been removed to allow infrared light transmissivity. Red nebula will be photographable without the aid of filters. Astro photographers who have been customizing current model digital SLRs by removing this filter will now have a factory built digital SLR specifically designed for them. Use of a conventional lens on this camera will likely require an IR blocking filter.
It is unknown to me at this time if the Canon 20Da will be available outside of Japan through normal supply channels.
Friday, February 11, 2005
Wednesday, February 9, 2005
I have posted my Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 L IS USM Lens review. Not all lenses are fun to evaluate, but this one is a blast to use. Image quality is exceptional. I will post a few sample pictures eventually.
Some additional reviews now online (some great stuff here) ...
Wimberley Gimbal Tripod Head Review
Maxtor 300GB External Hard Drive Review
Lexar CompactFlash PC CardBus Adapter Review
Pelican 1620 Hard Case Review
Wimberley P50 Lens Plate Review
I purchased another Canon 100-400mm L lens at the end of the last rebate period. The focal length range was too irresistible. I added a size comparison picture to the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS USM Lens Review.
I added a size comparison picture to the Lowepro Toploader Reviews.
I added a Canon date code example picture to the Canon Lens Aging page.
Monday, February 7, 2005
The Canon Rebate saga continues ... I received the dreaded white post card for a Canon 580EX Flash rebate. They claimed that I did not submit a copy of the warranty card. I definitely sent it the first time - and I resubmitted a copy of the copy I kept from my first submission.
On a more positive note ... I want to thank all of you that have emailed corrections, clarifications and suggestions for the site (no matter how small). I appreciate them!
Wednesday, February 2, 2005
Canon has been named 'America's Choice' for Digital Cameras in 2004.
Canon Named 'America's Choice' For Digital Cameras in 2004, According to Leading Industry Data Source; Canon's PowerShot and EOS Digital Cameras Capture the Overall #1 Brand Ranking from The NPD Group
LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 1, 2005--America has spoken, and it has chosen Canon as the leading brand for digital cameras in 2004, according to recently released retail sales data from The NPD Group, one of the leading providers of retail market information.
The NPD Group reports that the Canon brand captured the number one position in Total Digital Camera Sales in 2004, with a market share of 20.4 percent, based on unit sales of both compact cameras and digital SLR cameras combined*. In addition, Canon was the number one brand in both NPD's Digital Point-and-Shoot and Digital SLR categories, with market shares of 18.6 percent and 62.8 percent, respectively.
"The NPD data, which we believe is a true, accurate indicator of real market activity, shows that when it comes to meeting their digital imaging needs, customers are choosing Canon over any other brand on the market," said Yukiaki Hashimoto, senior vice president and general manager of the consumer imaging group, Canon U.S.A., Inc. "From the first-time, entry-level user to the most sophisticated shutterbug, Canon delivers the superior imaging technology, innovative features and stylish designs that fit America's diverse lifestyles."
More and more customers have come to recognize the high quality and reliability that has been designed into Canon's entire line of digital cameras, from its highly-acclaimed PowerShot(R) cameras to its award-winning Digital Rebel(R). In fact, more consumers purchased the Canon PowerShot A75 digital camera in 2004 than any other single digital camera on the market, while the EOS Digital Rebel was 2004's top seller in the digital SLR category, according to NPD data.
The digital camera category is clearly one of the best selling hardware segments in the photographic industry, and it is also one of the most competitive. In the U.S. market, more than 13 million compact digital cameras (non-SLRs) and nearly 600,000 digital SLRs were sold in 2004, according to NPD. In the digital camera category, Canon has consistently turned in strong performances, thus enabling the company to expand its market share.
A Brief History of Canon's Progress in the Digital Camera Market
Canon's success in the digital camera market was not built overnight. The company's first internally developed model, the PowerShot 600, was announced in 1996 and originally marketed as a computer peripheral through a subsidiary company. When it became apparent that the future of digital cameras was going to be in the consumer market, Canon reorganized itself from the top down and assigned responsibility for design, development, manufacturing and marketing to the Camera Division, which had a long history of success in traditional 35mm cameras. When the PowerShot S100 Digital ELPH and EOS D30 Digital SLR models appeared in 2000, their unique and innovative features catapulted Canon into the spotlight of media publicity and popularity with consumers. At that point, it was clear that Canon was on its way to the kind of success it had come to expect after nearly 25 years of market leadership in the traditional camera industry.
Advertising taglines such as "Are You Digital Yet?" sparked popular interest in the Canon brand. Each year, Canon gained market share and became more popular with consumers. As the digital camera market grew, so did the success of Canon's revolutionary products and technologies.
To support its success, Canon designs, develops and manufactures its own lenses, image sensors, image processors and color rendering software. With consistently high annual investments in research and development, Canon continues to stay ahead of the market with its innovative imaging technologies, such as UA (Ultra High Refractive Index Aspherical) Lens Technology, the DIGIC(R) (Digital Imaging Integrated Circuit) and DIGIC(R) II image processors, as well as Canon CMOS image sensors for the company's EOS Digital SLR cameras.
Canon, which is also one of the top holders of technology patents in the U.S., has created a unique synergy between its research and development team and its product groups that allows it to consistently introduce high quality and reliable imaging products for every level of user. In fact, the editors of PC Magazine recently honored Canon's digital cameras with the highest rankings in quality, reliability and support in their annual reader satisfaction survey.
In addition to its recognition by PC Magazine readers, Canon digital cameras have been honored by PC World, American Photo, C/NET, Macworld, Mobile PC Magazine, Best Magazine, Popular Science, Outside Magazine and PTN Magazine, among others, in 2004.
For more information on the history of Canon cameras, please visit www.canon.com/camera-museum/.
About The NPD Group, Inc.
Since 1967, The NPD Group has provided reliable and comprehensive sales and marketing information for a wide range of industries such as apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, food and beverage, foodservice, footwear, home improvement, housewares, information technology, music, toys and video games. NPD provides critical knowledge on what is selling, where, to whom and why to help clients make more successful, fact-based business decisions. For more information visit www.npd.com.
About Canon U.S.A., Inc.
Canon U.S.A., Inc. delivers consumer, business-to-business, and industrial imaging solutions. The Company is listed as one of Fortune's Most Admired Companies in America and is rated #35 on the BusinessWeek list of "Top 100 Brands." Its parent company Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ) is a top patent holder of technology, ranking third overall in the U.S. in 2004, with global revenues of $33.3 billion. For more information, visit www.usa.canon.com.
All referenced product names, and other marks, are trademarks of their respective owners.
Specifications are subject to change with notice.
* According to The NPD Group, Canon has held the number one position in digital cameras throughout 2004, based on unit sales and revenue figures compiled from consumer information and point-of-sale data collected from retailers and other distribution channels. Data made available January 26, 2005.
Adobe Camera Raw 2.4 has been released for Photoshop CS.
Tuesday, February 1, 2005
Canon has introduced their second new digital camera of the year, the Canon PowerShot A520 Digital Camera. It is the successor to the successful Canon PowerShot A85 and features 4 megapixel resolution and a 4x zoom in a 13% smaller/10% lighter body. Once again, SD and MMC media are used in this model. The A520 is rated for the same number of shots (300) as the A85 while using half the number of AA batterries (2).
Also included in this announcement is the new Canon HF-DC1 High Power Wireless Slave Flash.- compatible with almost all PowerShot digital cameras.
You may have noticed the new review section - Computer Hardware & Software Reviews. Most of the reviews are not completed at this point, I will add specific product links from this page as they are finished. In the meantime, you can see some of my setup.
In other big news (for me personally), the highly acclaimed Canon EF 400mm f/2.8 L IS USM Lens is on its way to me on the Brown Truck. I will post a review when I can get to it. You will find various other odds and ends (such as the Pelican 1620 Hard Case) listed on the site as well. Again, I will post links here as the reviews are finished.
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