Storage compartment

The storage compartment is situated on the back of the hand grip. The compartment door is spring loaded and 'pops open' as soon as you turn the knob (note that this has been made easier to operate, especially useful if you're wearing gloves), and you can close the door and pick up the camera in one movement. If you take a closer look at this images below you will see the rubber environmental seal around the inside of the compartment door, behind which you will find two storage slots, one for Compact Flash (Type I/II, Microdrive, UDMA and FAT32 support) and one for Secure Digital cards.

The Mark III offers far more versatile options for how the two cards are used. You can choose to (i) record to one card then switch to the other when the first is full, (ii) Record to both cards simultaneously or (ii) set the recording size / quality separately for each card. This final option means you can put JPEG on one card, RAW on the other (or record a large and small JPEG simultaneously) for example. Very useful.

Battery, Charger, AC Adapter and Compartment

The Mark III has a new compact Lithium Ion LP-E4 battery (11.1V, 2300 mAh) that offers around 1800 shots (CIPA standard) per charge at 23° C - without using live view. There's also a new, easier to use locking latch. The new LC-E4 charger takes around 2 hours for a full charge and can accept two batteries at once. This is all a big improvement on the Mark II. There is also an AC adaptor kit (ACK-E4) in the box that uses a 'dummy battery' system.

If you take a close look at the last image below you'll see some of the rubber environmental seal around the end of the battery which keeps the compartment waterproof.

Environmental seals

Just like its predecessors the Mark III is fully environmentally sealed. This means that there are rubber O-rings around the controls and that compartment doors have rubber seals. In total the camera has no less than 90 environmental seal points (indicated in red in the image above). It is however worth bearing in mind that the camera is only as well sealed as the lens used, and for that you'll need one of the special L lenses with rubber grommets which fit flush to the lens mount:

  • Canon EF 16 - 35 mm F2.8L USM
  • Canon EF 17 - 40 mm F4.0L USM
  • Canon EF 24 - 70 mm F2.8L USM
  • Canon EF 24 - 105 mm F4.0L IS USM
  • Canon EF 28 - 300 mm F3.5 - F5.6L IS USM
  • Canon EF 70 - 200 mm F2.8L IS USM
  • Canon EF 300 mm F2.8L IS USM
  • Canon EF 400 mm F2.8L IS USM
  • Canon EF 400 mm F4.0 DO IS USM
  • Canon EF 500 mm F4.0L IS USM
  • Canon EF 600 mm F4.0L IS USM
  • Canon Extender EF 1.4x II
  • Canon Extender EF 2.0x II


On the right side of the camera (from the rear) are two rubber doors which can be opened and rotated 180 degrees (as shown here). They cover the PC sync terminal (flash), remote terminal, video out and DIGITAL terminal (a mini USB 2.0 High Speed terminal) for image transfer and direct printing. The Mark III loses the IEEE 1394 (FireWire) terminal, but does at least offer true USB 2.0 speeds (the Mark II's USB port was 1.1 speed and was only really used for direct print). Behind these ports is a large circular screw-off cover under which lies the System Expansion Port (used to attach the WFT-E2 wireless transmitter).

Flash / Accessory Hot shoe

The Mark III features the same 'E-TTL II' flash metering algorithm as its predecessor. This system is essentially similar to E-TTL (pre-flash metering) except the algorithm has been tweaked to ignore very bright specular reflections and to also take into account distance information from the lens (if available) to produce a more accurate flash exposure. E-TTL II works with all Canon lenses (although distance information is only provided by some lenses).

Other flash photography features

High-Speed Sync (FP Flash) Enables flash sync with all shutter speeds from 30 to 1/8000 sec (Canon EX-series Speedlites)
FE (Flash Exposure) Lock Press the FEL button to lock the flash exposure at the desired part of the subject
Flash exposure compensation +/-3 EV in 0.3 EV or 0.5 EV steps
FEB (Flash Exposure Bracketing) Flash exposure bracketing (only FEB compatible Speedlites)
E-TTL II wireless auto flash with multiple Speedlites Wireless-compatible Speedlites only
Sync speed Non-Canon flash units up to 1/250 sec
PC Terminal For connection to external / studio flash systems, threaded

WFT-E2 Wireless transmitter

The EOS-1DS Mark III supports Canon's new compact wireless transmitter, which allows wireless (or wired via LAN) image transfers to computers and remote FTP servers. You can now also access the camera using a browser (the WFT-E2 offers HTTP access), allowing picture editors to view and download images remotely. The WFT-E2 also has a USB port, so you can shoot and record images directly onto an external hard drive (or even a thumb drive if you so desire). The unit also supports the recording of GPS data (when connected to a compatible device).

Finally you can use the WFT-E2 to wirelessley control the Mark III - even using 'remote live view' - a function that has already been put to some very interesting uses by enterprising professionals.

As the shots above show, the new transmitter is smaller - and neater - than its predecessor, and this, along with the added versatility, means it's the most sophisticated solution on the market today. Impressive stuff.


The bottom of the Mark III is the same as all previous EOS-1D cameras. The metal tripod mount is aligned with the center of the lens. The eyelet on the left is for attaching the optional hand strap.

Shutter Release Sound

In some of our digital SLR reviews we now provide a sound recording of a continuous burst of shots. Below you can see waveforms of a recording made of the EOS-1Ds Mark IIIshooting continuously JPEG Large/Fine for 30 seconds. The storage card used was a 4 GB SanDisk Extreme Ducati Edition Compact Flash.

JPEG continuous, 30 seconds

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III JPEG continuous 30 seconds; MP3 470 KB

In the box

Inside the box you'll find a large range of accessories and items:

  • Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III digital SLR
  • Eyecup, body cap, battery compartment cap
  • Battery Pack LP-E4 (Li-Ion)
  • Battery Charger LC-E4
  • DC Coupler Kit ACK-E4
  • Wide Strap L6
  • Interface Cable IFC-200U (USB)
  • Interface Cable IFC-500U (USB)
  • Video Cable VC-100 (Composite)
  • CD-ROM's
    • EOS Digital Solutions Disc
    • Digital Photo Professional Disc
  • Manuals / Paperwork:
    • EOS-1Ds Mark III Instruction Manual
    • Battery pack and charger Instructions
    • DC Coupler Kit Instructions
    • EOS-1Ds Mark III Software Instruction Manual
    • Quick start guide to shooting
    • Warranty Card
    • EOS-1Ds Mark III Accessories guide