• Price When Reviewed: 553 . 612

  • Pros: New dust-reduction systems, buffering to 27 JPGs, 9-point AF system and low price are all worthwhile improvements.

  • Cons: Move to 10mp doesn’t result in significantly more detail over 8-megapixels, and the body is still too small for the majority of users.

  • Expert Rating: We rate this 8 out of 10We rate this 8 out of 10We rate this 8 out of 10We rate this 8 out of 10We rate this 8 out of 10 We rate this 8 out of 10

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The EOS 400D is the successor to Canon’s eight-megapixel EOS 350D, one of most successful digital SLRs so far. Retaining the compact and lightweight body of its predecessor, the entry-level model features a new 10mp sensor, a 9-point autofocus system, a larger 2.5-inch screen, and Picture Styles – the company’s streamlined image parameter settings.

Although only a nominal increase in resolution over the sensors found in the 350D and recently introduced 30D, the 10.1-megapixel CMOS sensor is Canon’s first APS-C-size chip to hit ten megapixels. However, with a 28MB file size, there’s a gain of just 1.2-x-0.8 inches when printed at 300dpi.

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Higher resolution sensors exist already within the EOS digital range, but these are larger full-frame devices and designed exclusively for the company’s 35mm EF lens system. The 400D’s sensor is 40 per cent smaller than a single 35mm frame, and provides a 1.6x crop with either the short-focus EF-S lenses or the EF range, making the supplied 18-55mm the equivalent of a 29-88mm.
A self-cleaning sensor system is new for Canon’s SLR range. Like rival models from Olympus and Sony, the 400D literally shakes off dust particles that have accumulated on the sensor’s low-pass filter using ultrasonic vibration. Dust falling off during cleaning adheres to a sticky material at the base of the low-pass filter. In use, we found the system was extremely effective – very few of our test shots displayed dust. 
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