Price When Reviewed: 4510
Pros: Full frame CMOS panel allows unrestricted use of Canon’s wide-angle EF lenses. The 16.7mp resolution permits a double-page spread at 300dpi with minimal interpolation.
Cons: Menu system is poor. Frame-lines for only three focal lengths.
The update to Canon’s EOS-1Ds hardly comes as a surprise. It’s the studio-&-location version of the sports- and press-oriented EOS-1D, which was updated last year. However, the timing of the EOS-1Ds Mark II’s release is surprising – Canon announced it just days after Nikon announced its 12.4mp challenger to the original 1Ds.
Visually, the EOS-1Ds Mark II has hardly changed over its predecessor, but in fact each magnesium alloy panel has actually been subtly altered. The matte finish paint is less reflective too, though few users will notice at first. What matters is this camera now features an impressive 16.7mp CMOS sensor, and it’s still full-frame. With a maximum 4,992-x-3,328-pixel image size, the EOS-1Ds Mark II can punch-out a 300dpi image at 16.5-x-11-inches without interpolation.
At 36-x-24mm, the CMOS sensor is precisely the same size as a single 35mm frame, allowing Canon’s wide-angle lenses to be used without the irreversible cropping of the field of view associated with digital SLRs using smaller, often APS-C-sized sensors. Conversely, there’s none of the extra reach when using telephoto lenses, which is one of the reasons why sports and action photographers like the smaller chip. But, with so much resolution and detail available, it’s still feasible to crop an image to give a similar effect.