Price (RRP): $1,499
Reviewer: Byer Gair
If you’re looking for a D-SLR with a high resolution image sensor that can capture a maximum image size of 3888 x 2592 pixels… this could be your baby.
Bundled with a 3x Canon lens, it’s priced above some competitors at this end of the market. For the money, though, you get to enjoy a 6.4 cm LCD screen and a clear optical finder built into the pentaprism. The latter can be used for viewing and framing the shot and settling on focus; there is no ‘live view’ on the LCD screen.
The ESO 400D’s burst speed of 27 consecutive frames at 3 fps is exceptional, and a worthwhile feature like this could sway you towards the Canon.
With no image stabiliser built into the body you must acquire one of the company’s stabilised – excellent, but somewhat pricey – lenses to steady your shooting, although image steadiness won’t suffer much from careful handholding of the camera and the 3x lens, even at full telephoto.
A positive feature is the EOS 400D auto cleanser, which cleans dust from the sensor’s surface at power down.
Early on you find the control layout is logical and easy to follow.Ã‚Â The camera is quick off the mark and you can manually shoot pictures at rapid intervals.
Viewing is via an optical pentaprism viewfinder and 6.4 cm LCD screen. Control of the camera’s functions is via the mode dial, and here you find access to auto exposure, Program AE, shutter/aperture priority and manual exposure options. The exposure options include evaluative, partial and centre-weighted modes.
A shot-helper is the Auto Depth of Field setting which can lock in foreground and background points, plus some help from you in altering camera-subject distance or the lens aperture.
The camera can shoot and save simultaneous RAW and JPEG images.
The camera’s ergonomics are near-perfect, helping you to operate the camera with ease. Likewise, the EOS 400D’s quick, easy to understand control system will win many converts and, in terms of quality, if this is what digital SLRs are all about, let’s have more of it!
Following the successful EOS 350D, this is Canon’s second entry-level D-SLR. Let’s hope we see an even lower-price model soon so we can all enjoy the benefits of Canon quality and Canon build.
As with all digital SLRs that shoot biggish files – and memory hungry RAW format – I suggest install the largest CF card you can manage.