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Canon 1D Mark IV HD-DSLR – The pretender or the real McCoy?

Canon 1D Mark IV  (Photo from dpreview.com)

Canon 1D Mark IV (Photo from dpreview.com)

Competition in the pro-segment of the digital camera market is heating up fast. Just when we were amazed by Nikon’s announcement of the support for ISO sensitivity of up to 102,800 on the 14th of Oct, we were surprised yet again by another fierce competitor whom not only matched Nikon’s announcement blow-by-blow but has elevated the playing field to another ridiculous level that seemed unattainable just a few years ago. With this new announcement, Canon has within 2 ‘long’ years of their disastrous debut of the Canon 1D Mark III, re-positioned themselves back on the right path to success. Failure is not an option this time around, I hope!

As an avid user of Canon 1D Mark III camera, I can attest to the heartache and disappointment of owning this camera. The initial controversy surrounding the troubled focusing system can really make you lose confidence in your own ability of handling this system and coupled with the fact that you just spent a fortune on converting from a competing systems, really made you the butt of joke by friends and customers. I really hope Canon will compensate us, at least in kind for sticking with them in those hard times. Maybe they should give us the priority for ordering the new 1D Mark IV or maybe even a trade-in program for the older model. Why should they, you may asked?

Well, let me give you a few examples:

  1. We were inconvenienced by the many firmware upgrades, actual physical hardware upgrades and the constant search for a solutions to their problems.
  2. Canon finally acknowledged that there were indeed focusing issues with the 1D Mark III cameras, so they confirmed that they sold us some lemons but we can’t return the lemons as we had already consumed them.
  3. The introduction of the Nikon D3 has proven that Canon has indeed been sitting on their laurels and are taking their customer for a ride – How can a camera company that prides themselves of their high ISO capabilities, be proven a “has been” overnight by the introduction of the Nikon D3? They must have been holding back the technology from their customer, in order to milk them by every subsequent upgrades! Just because D3 and the new D3s can go all the way up to ISO 102,400 the new 1D Mark IV can suddenly achieve that figures with even smaller sensor pixels. What a coincidence!

As the owner and user of the Canon 1D Mark III, I am indeed allowed to voice out my frustration of owning the older camera. However with the introduction of the new 1D Mark IV, I do have even higher expectation for this new flagship model. I am especially impressed with their technical specifications for a few of their brand new features, namely:

  1. A brand new 45-point AF system, with 39 f/2.8 sensitive cross-type points located across the frame, providing consistent AF on static or moving subjects, no matter which AF point is being used
  2. The combination of a custom-designed, high resolution 16.1MP APS-H CMOS sensor and Dual “DIGIC 4” processors ensures that detailed, crisp images are delivered at high speeds
  3. Standard ISO on the EOS-1D Mark IV ranges from 100-12,800, while extended ISO ranges from a low of 50 to 102,400 – the highest ISO ever offered by a Canon SLR
  4. EOS Movie function, providing the ability to capture 1080p High Definition (HD) video at 30, 25 and 24fps and 720p footage at 60 and 50fps

This 4 main functionality of the newly launched Canon 1D Mark IV has not only stopped me from considering the Nikon D3s as my high-speed to-go-to camera (I am a dual systems user), it has also convinced me to stick back with Canon and be my only candidate to replace my old Canon 1D Mark III camera. It seemed such a simple decision based on the published capabilities. But this time around, I will wait a while before jumping into the new system. Let the others do the testing first and I will gladly do the following. No more playing heroes and be the first to jump into the boiling pot! I have learned my lesson well.

Comments

  1. The 1D Mark IV is an awsome camera !

    • Yes it is an awesome camera. But I will still wait for the early adopters to go through all the kinks first before picking up one myself. 🙂

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