Monday, 20th August 2007
Canon announced two brand new dSLRs, the Canon 40D with a 6.5fps burst and 3″ Live View LCD and the Canon 1Ds Mark III with a whopping 21 Megapixel Full Frame Sensor. The 40D is acknowledged by the photography world as the true successor to the 20D since the 30D wasnt very revolutionary. With a 10 Megapixel sensor, it was only a small leap from the 8 Megapixel sensor of the 30D but it included several additional features such as DIGIC III processor and 6.5fps burst capable of shooting 75jpgs, which earned it some nods of approval from the photography world.
The 1Ds Mark III naturally stunned everyone with its large megapixel count, something only earlier achievable by medium format digital cameras and to this day, remains the dSLR with the highest megapixel count. It had a burst rate of 5fps, admittedly slower than the 40D but at capable of recording 56 21Megapixels RAW, one cant really complain. It also boasted of Dual DIGIC III processors to process the 185MB of data every second produced at full burst. It had a decent ISO range from ISO 50 to ISO 3200 and a 19 point autofocus sensor. A $8,000, it was expensive but there were probably a lot of people willing to spent that much of money for the megapixels.
Thursday, 23rd August 2007
Nikon retaliated with its two latest offerings, the Nikon D300 with a 51-point autofocus sensor and an impressive 922,000 pixel 3″ LCD with Live View and autofocus, and the Nikon D3 with a mindblowing ISO of 25,600 and a Full Frame 12 Megapixel sensor capable of 11fps burst. The D300 is probably not directly comparable with the 40D since it falls in a higher price bracket (the D300 costs $1,800 opposed to the $1,300 of the 40D) but the mind tends to compare things and since both of them were announced within 3 days of each other, people started saying how the D300 was so much more awesome than the 40D which was true.
As for the D3, it was a reason to rejoice for Nikonians all over the world since it was their first full frame dSLR and came with features that would make some Canonians burn with jealousy. Even though it only had a 12 Megapixel Sensor, the fact that it could shoot at 25,600 ISO, the highest in the world even today, was a huge selling point. It had a screen similar to the D300 and a Virtual Horizon feature and even HDMI output. At $5,000, it was also noticeably cheaper than the Canon equivalent.The 1Ds Mark III did have its advantage when it came to megapixels but the D3’s ISO and autofocus tempted several sports photographs to switch sides as was visible in the Beijing Olympics with a marked decrease in white lenses.
Tuesday, 1st July 2008
Nikon officially announced the much rumoured about Nikon D700, a camera with the guts of the D3 and the body of the D300. It was in direct competition with the Canon 5D which was a highly successful full frame camera. The D700 would also prove to be popular among the people since one could have the essential features of the D3 minus the fast burst rate and could carry around a much more portable camera. Costing $3,000, it was well worth it.
Tuesday, 20th August 2008
Canon announces the much anticipated successor to the 40D, the Canon 50D. With a remarkable 15Megapixels of resolution and 12,800 ISO, it sounds like a clear winner. In addition to that, it will be the first camera to sport the new DIGIC 4 processor. Learned from Nikon, it now boasts of a sparkling 3″ VGA LCD with Live View and 3 modes of autofocus and also HDMI output. The LCD is supposed to be superior to that of the Nikon D3 which is good news. Priced reasonably at $1,400, it almost looks like Canon is making a comeback against Nikon.
Wednesday, 21st August 2008
Nikon announces the successor to the hugely popular D80, the Nikon D90. With a 12Megapixel sensor and a maximum ISO of 6400, it doesnt sound like a worthy opposition to the Canon 50D. It also has the same screen as the D3 with Live View and a 4.5fps burst. But the magic feature of the D90 is its ability to record movies. Yes, Nikon has just released the world’s first dSLR with video recording capabilities. This is sure to create a lot of buzz among everyone and since its priced at $1,300, it’s going to be very tempting for some potential 50D buyers.
Along the the 50D, Canon has also announced its newest superzoom lens, the Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.5 IS for use the with crop sensor cameras. It was about time that Canon annouced a superzoom lens since Nikon had already done so a long time ago. However, the leader in the world superzooms is Tamron with its newest offering having an impressive range of 15x with a focal length of 18-270mm with VC which is Tamron’s version of IS. Once again, consumers will have a choice of Canon’s higher priced lower focal length offering or Tamron’s lower priced higher focal length solution. The difference in quality can only be determined once they have been released and one has to see whether there will be remarkable differences which would make the Canon worth the money.
In the world of flashes, Nikon seems to be leading as well with the new Nikon SB-900 which is Nikon’s top of the line flash and definitely trumps Canon’s top of the line 580EX-II. The SB-900 comes with some world’s first features such as a flash zoom range of 17-200mm and three different illumination patterns. Sony is making a revolution in its own world with the first flash in the world with a vertical swivel. The HVL-F58AM from Sony has a very innovative “Quick Shift Bounce” system also makes it a must have for many photographers.
Sony will also be entering the Full Frame with the announcement of its much anticipated new Pro level dSLR which is touted to have a 24Megapixel sensor and will effectively become the dSLR with the highest megapixel count. And since Sony supplies the sensors for Nikon, it shouldnt be too much of a surprise if Nikon announces a D3X with a 24Megapixel sensor as well. This would be a huge blow to Canon which needs to get its show together at Photokina this year. Photokina starts on the 23rd of September at Germany and almost every photographer is eagerly awaiting the announcement of the Canon 5D’s successor. Several rumours have been all around the internet but we wont know for sure until Canon announces it officially. I sincerely do hope that Canon have something mindblowing and revolutionary in store for everyone because if they dont, Nikon is going to slowly start taking the lead…
Disclaimer – I own a Canon 40D which I bought around a year ago.