The Canon EOS 5D is Canon's most recently announced digital SLR camera (DSLR). The camera is a digital SLR (or DSLR) which means that it features an optical "through-the-lens" viewfinder (unlike non-DSLR cameras which may have either a CCD viewfinder or a non-through the lens optical viewfinder). This DSLR also features removeable and interchangeable lenses.
The most significant feature of the Canon EOS 5D is that it is the first "entry level" digital SLR to feature a full frame 35mm sensor. This means there is no focal length multiplier with this camera, and all of your Canon lenses from the days of film behave exactly as you would expect them to when mounted to this body.
What size and type of sensor does the EOS 5D use?
The single biggest feature of the EOS 5D is its 12.8 megapixel full-frame (no FOV crop) CMOS sensor (cf - Nikon's D200 which uses a Sony made CCD type sensor - see the Nikon D200 FAQ.
The sensor measures 35.8 x 23.9 mm and represents the full frame equivalent of a 35mm film negative. No focal length multiplier applies (see below).
What is the focal length multiplier for the EOS 5D?
The focal length multiplier for the EOS 5D is 1.0x - so there is no need for a focal length multiplier. Your Canon film SLR lenses will have the same field of view as when used on your Canon film bodies.
What lenses can I use on the EOS 5D?
Canon EF lens mount lenses can be used but because this is a full frame sensor, lenses designed specifically for the smaller APS-C sized sensors (Canon EF-S lenses) cannot be used.
What storage media does the EOS 5D use?
The EOS 5D uses compact flash type I or type II cards. It only has one media slot. Microdrives and FAT32 (for cards >2GB) are also supported.
What is the continuous shooting speed of the EOS 5D?
The EOS 5D can shoot at 3 frames per second (fps) up to 60 jpeg or 17 RAW frames.
How big is the LCD display on the EOS 5D?
The rear mounted LCD is quite large at 2.5" and fairly high resolution at 230,000 pixels. This is comparable to the LCD on Nikon's D200 which is the same size and but with slightly higher resolution at 235,000 pixels ( see Nikon D200 FAQ ). However, the LCD is much larger than that on the Canon Digital Rebel XT / 350D which is only 1.8" across and has only 115,000 pixels ( see Canon Digital Rebel XT / 350D FAQ ).
What is the body of the EOS 5D made of?
The EOS 5D body is made of magnesium alloy (unlike cheaper entry level DSLRs that feature large amounts of plastic in their bodies). However, unlike the Nikon D200, the Canon EOS 5D does not feature environmental seals.
Is there a movie mode?
No digital SLR's to date have a movie mode. The usual explaination why is that:
- DSLRs use a large power hungry sensor;
- movie recording requires the sensor to be continously powered while recording the movie;
- that power required is given off as heat;
- that heat causes image problems and potentially failure in the sensor.
That's not to say that DSLRs in the future won't feature a movie mode, but the manufacturers have some technical hurdles to overcome.
When will the EOS 5D be available?
The Canon EOS 5D is shipping now.