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Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II, wireless

By dpreview staff on Sep 21, 2004 at 07:05 GMT

Leaked in some detail over the weekend we can now bring you full details of the 16.7 megapixel EOS-1Ds Mark II. Successor to the EOS-1Ds the Mark II maintains the 36 x 24 mm CMOS sensor (full 35 mm frame size), raises the pixel count by almost six million pixels, provides ISO sensitivity through to ISO 3200, faster continuous shooting (4 fps) with a large and improved buffer (32 JPEG, 11 RAW) as well as all of the changes we saw between the EOS-1D to EOS-1D Mark II. Additionally Canon has also announced the WFT-E1 Wireless Transmitter which supports 802.11b/g (WiFi) as well as tethered LAN for transmission of images directly back to a server. It will be priced £5,999 (UK), $7,999 (US) and €8,000 (Europe).

Click here for our preview of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II
(includes detailed specifications and additional product images)

Press Release:

Canon’s 16.7 Megapixel SLR extends studio photographer’s options

Amstelveen, the Netherlands, 21 September 2004. Canon, a world leader in photographic and imaging technology, today announces its new flagship camera: the 35mm full-frame 16.7 Megapixel EOS-1Ds Mark II Digital SLR. The camera is expected to appeal to professional studio and commercial photographers.

Featuring a full-frame 36 x 24mm 16.7 Megapixel CMOS sensor, the EOS-1Ds Mark II produces images with outstanding colour rendition and dynamic range. It has sufficient resolution to produce files which convert to 50MB uncompressed TIFF at 24 bit colour depth, now considered standard acceptable size by leading international photo agencies and stock libraries.

Replacing the award winning 11.1 Megapixel EOS-1Ds, the camera is powered by Canon’s second generation DIGIC II image processor and is capable of firing at 4 fps for bursts of up to 32 frames in JPEG, or 11 frames in RAW. An optional wireless adaptor (also released today) delivers high speed IEEE802.11b/g wireless LAN and 100 Megabit per second wired LAN support.

Besides the inherent advantages of digital, such as immediate turn-around and elimination of film costs, it is the flexibility of the EOS 35mm SLR format which Canon expects to appeal to many studio photographers. For the first time, medium format image quality combines with access to the world’s most extensive range of professional lenses, spanning from 14mm to 1200mm.

“The EOS-1Ds Mark II is a tremendous achievement, it represents the pinnacle of Canon’s digital camera technology,” said Mogens Jensen, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging Europe. “With its resolution, image quality, immediacy of wireless and the power and flexibility of SLR, the EOS-1Ds Mark II offers the first real digital alternative to medium format, which has so far been the choice for mainstream commercial studio and location work.”

Canon expects the camera to be adopted in areas such as fashion, car, calendar, advertising and architectural photography.

Key camera specifications include:

  • 16.7 MP full frame 36 x 24mm CMOS sensor
     
  • 0.3 second start up and 4fps performance
     
  • ISO 100-1600, expandable to L:50 and H:3200
     
  • Digital Photo Professional v1.5 RAW processing s/ware with support for sRGB, Adobe RGB and wide gamut RGB colour spaces plus various European, North American and Japanese standard CMYK separation simulations
     
  • Hi-Speed FireWire, & Video out i/face for complete connectivity
     
  • Dual high performance SD and CF/CF-II card slots (supports cards greater than 2GB)
     
  • Complete compatibility to all EF lenses & EX-series Speedlites
     
  • 2.0” LCD screen with 230,000 pixels, 1.5-10x playback zoom
     
  • Simultaneous RAW & JPEG shooting
     
  • Battery life – approximately 1200 shots @ 20C, 800 at 0C – in accordance with CIPA testing standards

Unsurpassed image quality

The full frame 16.7 Megapixel resolution sensor has a built in low-pass filter to reduce false colour and moiré effects, which can appear when shooting subjects with fine regular detail, such as textiles. The second generation DIGIC II processor delivers 0.3 sec start up time, fast continuous shooting and simultaneous RAW and JPEG recording. It also features advances in the image processing algorithms to improve white balance, auto exposure and overall image quality. Photographers can choose between four resolutions and 10 quality levels for JPEG images. Within the camera, the EOS-1Ds Mark II supports sRGB and Adobe RGB colour spaces with user settable colour saturation and tone levels, and provides five preset and two user-definable colour matrices. When using the Digital Photo Professional software and RAW image files, Wide Gamut RGB is also available. White Balance (WB) bias is correctable by +/- 9 levels for both blue/amber and magenta/green bias and the camera supports WB bracketing up to +/- 3 levels.

Flexibility of SLR in the studio

Photographers switching to Canon’s EOS system open up access to over 60 EF lenses, including tilt-shift, macro, super telephoto and Image Stabilizer lenses. The EOS-1Ds Mark II is compatible with the entire range of EX-Series Speedlite flash units, including two macro set ups and a range of wireless master/slave flash solutions. For photographers comfortable with the vertical orientation viewfinders of some medium format cameras, the camera accepts an optional Angle finder C right-angle viewfinder.

The immediacy of wireless image transfer

With the optional Wireless LAN adapter plugged into the camera’s IEEE1394/Firewire connection, photographers can work untethered as huge full-frame RAW files transfer automatically to the studio LAN in seconds . “A London publisher can now lay out a production-ready front cover of a magazine with a photograph taken literally seconds beforehand in a Milan studio,” observes Jensen. “Once this level of immediacy becomes commonplace, it is hard to imagine anyone accepting the risks and costs associated with the delays of film developing.”
The Wireless LAN adapter supports both IEEE802.11b, IEEE802.11g wireless network standards and also includes a 100 Megabit wired ethernet connector for automatic and immediate transfer to any wide or local area network. The system supports a comprehensive range of major wireless network encryption and security features.

The CMOS advantage

The EOS-1Ds Mark II’s CMOS sensor offers lower noise levels and a superior dynamic range (capacity to capture subtle tonal gradations in shadow, midtone and highlight areas) to that of sensors found in other digital cameras and camera backs. Canon is the only camera manufacturer with a history of significant research and development investment into image sensors. The resulting CMOS sensor technology found in its digital SLR range is key to the company’s competitive advantage. CMOS sensors have formed the basis of a long line of award winning cameras including the EOS-1Ds, EOS-1D and EOS 10D. Such is the strength of Canon’s sensor development that this is the third new CMOS sensor Canon has commercialised this year. Canon’s first commercialised sensor technology formed the basis of the 1987 EOS auto focus system, with CMOS technology first appearing as an image sensor in the 2000
EOS D30.

RAW processing

Digital Photo Professional v.1.5 image processing software is provided for high-speed processing of lossless RAW files. Processing with Digital Photo Professional is approx. 6 times faster than the File Viewer Utility supplied with the EOS-1Ds. It allows real-time display and immediate application of adjustments to images and includes a wide array of RAW, TIFF or JPEG image editing functions, which give control over variables such as white balance, dynamic range, exposure compensation and colour tone. sRGB, Adobe RGB and Wide Gamut RGB colour spaces are supported, and an ICC (International Colour Consortium) profile is automatically attached to RAW images that have been converted to TIFF of JPEG formats. This allows images to be displayed in their faithful colours in software applications that support ICC profiles, such as Adobe Photoshop. Image processing of various parameter changes can now be batched rather than carried out sequentially, vastly increasing the efficiency of applying a number of changes to the same images. The new version of Digital Photo Professional adds the ability to simulate the CMYK separation of images based on regular Japanese, European and USA printing industry practices.

Click here for our preview of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II
(includes detailed specifications and additional product images)

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