Photography News of Interest

In the run up to Photokina next week the new Canon 50D was leaked and subsequently announced to the public by Canon as a form of damage control.  This camera is VERY significant and will compete directly with Nikons hugely successful D300 but at almost $500 less. The 50D descends from the very popular 20D, 30D, and 40D amateur DSLRs. 

Looking over the specifications and features I predict the new 50D will not only sell well to new Canon users, but will also have those with older models finding enough about the new model to warrant setting aside their perfectly good working 20D/30D/40D and upgrading.  Look for excellent deals on EBay on the 20D/30D and 40D’s.

Significant new features will be the 15.1mp sensor offering even lower noise than before.  The 50D brings you 14 bit processing, a self cleaning sensor, ISO extensions to 6400 and 12,800, two new reduced resolution raw modes, 6.3fps frame rates, a HDMI TV out, 3” Clear View 920,000 pixel LCD, new live mode focusing modes, and FINALLY for Canon an Auto ISO mode.  I’ll talk about some of these features and why they’re significant in future weeklies.  The new LCD triples the resolution in direct response to the rave reviews the new Nikons have received from the industry since introducing their own 920,000 pixel LCD’s, the new live mode focusing modes includes face recognition making the Canon 50D the only DSLR offering face recognition period much less in live view, and the 14 bit processing will over more tonal values throughout the range resulting in my lifelike, and film like images.

Also announced was Canon’s 18-200mm F3.5-5.6 IS compact telephoto lens. Once again in direct response to Nikons very popular 18-200 lens.  This is an EF-S lens which means it’s designed for use on crop sensor cameras such as Canon’s popular Rebels and 20D/30D/40D/50D DSLRs.  This gives it a 35mm equivalent focal range of 29-320mm!  I’ve said before that the greater the zoom range the more compromise in image quality and this is generally true.  However, among amateurs especially who would rather not carry a bag full of lenses while on vacation our out with the family, a “general purpose” lens such as this becomes more attractive for the weight and space it saves, than for relatively small image quality sacrifices.  I’ll be keeping track of how this lens performs during testing reviews.

And if you’re looking for a point and shoot instead, Canon has announced three new Powershots, a new SX Powershot, Olympus has announced a budget SP-565 UZ with a huge 26-530mm focal range, and Olympus has announced a whole slew of new point and shoots.

Agreeing to shoot a wedding is a big responsibility.  Choosing the wrong photographer will ruin any chances you have of properly documenting some of your most important memories.  I can’t stress enough how this is not the time to save a few bucks, choose your wedding photographer with great care only after seeing samples of his/her work and accessing their character.  In this case couples are still waiting for this company to produce what they were paid for.

More about the Lightroom sponsored “walks” of your city.