Canon releases world's fastest professional digital camera: EOS-1D
By Mike Hanlon
Canon Australia has announced a new flagship professional digital SLR camera - the EOS-1D Mark II - featuring an 8.2-million effective-pixel CMOS image sensor and the world's fastest continuous shooting speed of approximately 8.5 frames per second (fps) for a burst of up to 40 consecutive frames.
Canon's new EOS-1D Mark II, replacing the EOS-1D model released in December 2001, is designed for professional news, sports and studio photographers. The EOS-1D Mark II incorporates a 28.7 x 19.1 mm CMOS sensor with 8.2-million effective pixels and, maximising the performance potential of the sensor, Canon's new proprietary DiG!C II high-speed digital signal-processing integrated circuit.
The DiG!C II circuit performs detailed processing of large-volume data at extremely high speed, satisfying professional demands for exceptional image quality and responsiveness in any shooting situation.
Scott Jackson, Product Manager, Consumer Imaging Products Group, Canon Australia, said feedback from professional users was top of mind when Canon designed the range of new features for the EOS-1D Mark II.
"We've included a range of new features in this model, including two customisable colour-matrix settings, in addition to five preset modes, enabling image optimisation according to the requirements of the subject or output device," said Mr Jackson. "The camera also offers the ability to save camera settings including Custom and Personal Functions on to a memory card, greatly reducing complex set-up tasks."
"Dedicated card slots for CompactFlash and SD memory cards allow users to simultaneously backup or selectively record to either card, while a video output terminal gives users the opportunity to view images on a TV screen," said Mr Jackson.
The model also incorporates a two-inch, 230,000-pixel LCD monitor, which effectively doubles the resolution of the previous models and enables magnification up to 10x to effectively check image focus during playback.
The new EOS-1D Mark II offers outstanding robustness, boasting improvements such as dramatically increased shutter durability capable of withstanding 200,000 cycles. A lightweight, heavy-duty magnesium alloy exterior provides excellent rigidity as well as electromagnetic shielding, while thorough water- and dust-resistant sealing in 70 locations, including all switches, body seams and memory-card slots, ensures users of unfailing reliability under even the most gruelling conditions.
Incorporating an AF system with a high-speed split-multiprocessor architecture, the EOS-1D Mark II achieves improved AF performance. In addition to matching the camera's 8.5 fps continuous-shooting speed, the camera delivers One-Shot AF speed and AI Servo AF focusing precision superior to those of the EOS-1D.
The camera also features Canon's new E-TTL II automatic flash exposure control which, combined with Canon's EX-series Speedlite flashes, employs a revised metering algorithm to achieve more precise, stable exposure control. The latest and most advanced addition to Canon's range of professional digital SLRs, the EOS-1D Mark II inherits the renowned functions and usability of the EOS-1D and EOS-1Ds.
"We've carried over some of the features from the earlier models, including Canon's proprietary 45-point area autofocus, which makes photo composition quick and easy by eliminating the need to position the subject at the centre of the picture," said Mr Jackson.
"A 21-Zone Evaluative metering sensor ensures ideal exposure performance, with framing made easy with an advanced full-frame viewfinder. The camera's Custom Function control will also allow users to tailor camera operations to their individual preferences," said Mr Jackson.
Further catering to the needs of pro users, the new camera ships with a software suite that includes Canon's newly developed high-speed RAW-image-processing application, Digital Photo Professional. The newly developed application offers high-speed image previews, a multi-frame editing window and batch processing, to boost workflow efficiency when working with large quantities of RAW images. Also included among the bundled software is the all-purpose EOS Viewer Utility which, based on Canon's previous File Viewer Utility, features such improvements as high-speed RAW-image previews and a refined user-interface for enhanced operability.
Canon Data Verification Kit DVK-E2
In addition to the EOS-1D Mark II, Canon has also announced the introduction of Canon Data Verification Kit DVK-E2, enabling users to verify the originality of digital images. Canon Data Verification Kit DVK-E2 permits users to check with high precision for traces of data modification, enabling the accurate determination of the originality of digital images.
In response to user demands since the release of DVK-E1, the latest version features more compact hardware for portability, and software with seven language options.
The Canon EOS-1D Mark II will be available through Canon Pro Photo Dealers in the second quarter of 2004 with pricing to be advised.
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