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Equipment Why should I not buy a 40D? (Edit: Too late :-) )

Discussion in 'Photography, Art & Design' started by OleJ, 1 Jul 2008.

  1. OleJ

    OleJ Me!

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    Edit: Bought it!

    I'm able to afford a 40D over my 350D but I would very much like some feedback on whether I should/shouldn't.

    So far my improvement list looks like this:
    - 14bit color handling vs. the 12
    - 3" display
    - Live View
    - Larger Viewfinder
    - Anti-dust shake sensor thing
    - Better ergonomics
    - Generally better color and sharpness
    - Spot metering (and generally better than the 350Ds bit shakey metering)
    - I have all the lenses I need atm (yes I want the Canon 100mm macro and a flash, but besides that I'm very content)
    - Some 3-letter function that awed me but I forgot its name.... Vers talked about it. Sry for forgetfulness :)

    Why not:
    New model very soon to arrive?
    A lot of cash for little improvement?
    Money better spent on Canon 100mm macro lens?

    Any suggestions to whether I should wait for next model (40D mk II :lol: ) or in general why I shouldn't go for the 40D?

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: 3 Jul 2008
  2. Vers

    Vers ...

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    You could wait until the 50D, by that point you should be able to have a 40D for around $700 give or take. OTOH the 40D goes for around $900USD with rebate ATM (not sure if you guys still have rebates available), if you don't mind spending the additional few hundred dollars in order to get your hands on it now...by all means, it is a worthwhile upgrade from a 350D.

    On the flipside, Instead of dropping the cash for a body upgrade you could drop it on glass instead. Pick up your coveted macro and a flash and upgrade that kit of yours to a Sigma 17-70 or Tamron 17-50. IMO the glass is the most important upgrade you can make...then again, it all depends on your personal needs.

    And I think that three letter word you're referring to is Highlight Tone Priority (HTP).
     
    Last edited: 1 Jul 2008
  3. yodasarmpit

    yodasarmpit No longer the other Brett.

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    Rebate finished yesterday I believe, lucky for me my 70-200 f4 L receipt has yesterdays date on it :)

    I swapped my 400D for the 30D primarily due to the ergonomics, and I have to say I'm happy I made the move for more than just the feel.
    However, I would say if you are happy with the 350D then a better investment may very well be glass and flash.

    I must admit the 40D does look tempting, and I can imagine the live view would be handy for macro stuff.

    I think you need to ask yourself, do you feel there is anything lacking in your 350D that glass wouldn't solve?
     
  4. Vers

    Vers ...

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    I haven't used live view yet, other than testing it...and to tell you the truth I don't think I'll ever use it if not only a few times. The other day while at the Bronx Zoo, I saw a guy using his DSLR with live view enabled as a P&S :duh:...Part of my laughed...the other part made me want to throw him to the lions.
     
  5. Smilodon

    Smilodon The Antagonist

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    :hehe:

    I had a discussion with someone about the same thing the other day. He owns a Nikon D300 IIRC (which have Live View). He told me he never use it, and we both agreed that it looks a bit... off... to use a dSLR as a P&S camera.
     
  6. yodasarmpit

    yodasarmpit No longer the other Brett.

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    The only time I could imagine using it would be on extreme close up studio macro stuff.
     
  7. Vers

    Vers ...

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    Don't get me wrong...it has its uses, I just haven't had the need for it yet.
     
  8. Vers

    Vers ...

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    low, awkward positions would be another.
     
  9. Smilodon

    Smilodon The Antagonist

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    yes, I have actually wanted it a couple of times, but when taking pictures of landscapes and buildings it looks strange.
     
  10. OleJ

    OleJ Me!

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    Heh yeah that's pretty much where I'm at... I could spend it on glass... :)
    Picking up a replacement for the kit though... oh noes now you got me started. LOL another thing to the list.

    Right on the money! :) And it still entices me :)

    Exactly what I've been thinking. As I see it ATM I haven't used my 10-22 and the tele enough to warrant getting yet another lens that I'll have to learn how to use. I'd much rather get to know the ones I have already a little more first :)

    I could very well imagine using it for most work with a tripod. Be it macro or night photography.

    ---

    Thanks for the responses guys. I'm glad none of you advised me not to get it :)

    Does anyone know when the 50D will show up?
     
    Last edited: 2 Jul 2008
  11. Matkubicki

    Matkubicki New Member

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    I find it really useful when watching wildlife with a none photographer with me, i can just get the shot with the viefinder and then switch to live view so we can both watch what's going on in the distance! The great thing is it means i get to keep hold of the camera, no more passing it over to someone and then not knowing whether they've got the animal in view or in focus.

    Plus if something cool happens while we're watching i can just hit the shutter button and stand a decent chance of getting the shot still.

    Ok so its a niche use but to be honest it's changed photography when out with my girlfriend.
     
  12. Firehed

    Firehed Why not? I own a domain to match.

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    I recently moved from a 400D to a 40D (someone buy it, dammit!), and I'm very happy with the upgrade. You could certainly wait for the 50D, but you never know what it will include or when it will happen. You can play the waiting game all you want, but that's time spent not using your new investment.

    There are really only two minor dislikes I have about having made the switch:
    1) the 400D has a face censor thing that turns off the LCD when you're shooting (same thing the iPhone has). For whatever reason, the 40D doesn't, despite being a newer model. However, as there's the top LCD and more information in the viewfinder window, you can shoot without the rear LCD on without a problem (and save some battery life to boot)
    2) That low-profile power switch. Never liked that. Never will. It's obviously hard to turn off the camera accidentally which is a good thing, but I always forget that the camera is on since the switch is so subtle.

    Everything else is a great improvement. AF is slightly faster but not enough that I really notice. Bigger and better viewfinder - again, not in-your-face-obvious (at least not compared to holding up an old film body with a 100% VF) but more so than the AF. High-speed 6.5FPS is awesome for events, and more importantly AI Servo AF can actually keep up with it (paired with a good lens anyways). Better ergonomics. Wheel and quick-select dial over cross-keys. Three custom setup modes on the mode selector wheel. Bigger screen. Better menu navigation. Custom menu (freakin' rocks - Canon should be required by law to patch that into the older models via a firmware update). Spot metering.

    You know, all the stuff you spouted off. Those are just the improvements that come to mind. Live View is, as several have said, nice to have available for that odd time, but I find it to be of very limited use. Largely due to it being MF only (as far as I can tell anyways), and I'm useless at manual focus - especially without a tripod (and I hate using tripods).


    All that being said, if you don't have a good flash, investing in some decent lighting gear is also a very good choice. Unless you have a need for a macro lens other than them being fun (and they are), I put that as slightly lower priority; I had the Sigma 150/2.8 Macro on the debate table along with the 40D. It's probably now next on the list following some AB lighting gear, which will probably happen sometime in the next couple months after my bonus from work arrives.

    And yes, I also recently replaced my kit lens with the Tamron 17-50. It's a fantastic lens, especially for the price. It's actually now what I use primarily for product shots, since the wider lenses have a fairly deep DOF even wide open. Combined with my 70-200, it really covers all of the focal lengths I use - which is to say that I don't miss the 50-70mm range at all (having an ultra-wide and a super-tele would, of course, be great; I've currently no need nor no desire to spend that money). Just to complicate things a bit for you ;)

    For the record, my purchase history has gone as follows:
    400D
    50 f/1.8
    580EX II
    eBay wireless flash triggers
    28-135IS
    two Strobist lighting kits (one with a 285HV, one without)
    70-200 f/4L IS
    40D
    Tamron 17-50 f/2.8

    Next?
    Probably 2x AB800 monolights, an octabox, and some misc accessories
    set of better wireless triggers (RP Jr, PCB CS, PW+II?)
    Sigma 150 f/2.8 or Canon 100 f/2.8 Macro

    Overall, I think it's been a pretty decent progression, and has suited me well. The 28-135 is pretty good for the price but ended up really just being a hold-over until I got a good tele and wide-angle; likewise, the 400D was a great body to get me started but having moved up a notch it does feel a bit lacking.

    So, take that all as you will. You really can't go wrong with anything you're looking at, and there's no best way to decide.
     
  13. Vers

    Vers ...

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    Canon releases a XXD body every 1.5 years...so the 50D will be out this upcoming spring (March '09). Anyway you slice it you will see a decent upgrade...just depends on which will benefit you most. Personally I'd go for the glass.

    Forgot to mention...if your never in situations where you need flash, I wouldn't put it very high on your priority list. For me, I only use my flash when shooting events (when decent DOF is a factor), for everything else I depend on my f/2.8 or better glass. Hell, if you ever need one in a pinch get a puffer and use your pop-up flash. IMO, what seems to be your weakest link in your kit is your kit lens...get rid of that thing already.
     
    Last edited: 2 Jul 2008
  14. Da Dego

    Da Dego Brett Thomas

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    As a non-flash user and a lover of landscapes and wildlife, I'd personally say can the 40d and go for better glass. There's really nothing wrong with the 350d, and most of its ergonomic problems are solved with a battery grip.

    All the bells and whistles on the image processing are indeed nice, but they're hardly going to net you the improvement of replacing your kit lens with something worthwhile or giving yourself a bit of extra quality on the long end or a wide angle or anything else that 500 quid could easily buy you. :)

    YMMV, of course, but that's just my $0.02. That and an extra $1 may get you a cup of coffee somewhere.
     
  15. OleJ

    OleJ Me!

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    I guess if I was using a 300D I'd upgrade without any hesitation but being on the 350D I'm wavering a bit. I'll wait a while before I decide then. Think it all over some more and have a good look at a replacement for the kit lens.
    The replacement would have to be something like 22-70 and be able to open up rather wide.

    I'll have a look at the Sigma 17-70. Any other recommendations in that area are welcomed :) Thank you for your help :)
     
  16. OleJ

    OleJ Me!

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    How about if I get the 40D kit with the 17-85 IS lens? Is the 17-85 IS recommendable? It sounds great...
     
  17. OleJ

    OleJ Me!

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    Got carried away and ordered the kit after reading a lot of positive remarks on FM. I'm soooo looking forward to getting it!!! Like a little kid. LOL. I'm off to pick it up in-store in the morning. Yay!

    I know the 17-85 doesn't go so low but with the IS it only becomes a slight compositional challenge on not-near objects. In case I find myself lacking later on the lower aperture Sigma is relatively cheap and may be an option for then. The negative about the 17-85 seems to be quite some barrel distortion when it's down at 17mm which I'll have covered by the 10-22. In general there is a lot of positives to it over my 18-55.

    Woot!?! I'm picking up a 40D in the morning! Yipeee! :D
     
  18. Jumeira_Johnny

    Jumeira_Johnny 16032 - High plains drifter

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    I think, if you can spare the cash, you should get the 40D. And not to with the kit lens. On something like a 40D, you're really going to want to hang some nice glass on it. Beg, borrow or steal what you need, and get a good mid range zoom. Based on what I hear from the Canon muppets, I think you want a 16-35 or a 17-40. But I don't shoot Canon, so run that by Vers or Firehed. They babble on about some Tamron 17-50, so look into that.

    Edit: Just saw that you ordered. Congrats. I wouldn't worry about the kit lens, you'll most likely end up replacing it....soon.
     
  19. Da Dego

    Da Dego Brett Thomas

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    The Canon group can safely speak - 17-50 f/2.8 Tamron is a lens pretty much all of us love, especially for its price.

    Congrats on the buy, OleJ! :D
     
  20. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    Congrats on the new camera. I love my 40D, and I felt it was a significant upgrade from my 300D. To be honest, I've never used the Live view feature, but the rest of the camera is capable of anything I throw at it.

    I've had it for some time now and I still shoot with the kit lens. I don't necessarily dislike better glass, I'm just too cheap to buy a better lens. There was only a single occasion in which I wished the aperture could open up further, and in that scenario I put on the "nifty fifty". Other than that single shot, I've never had a problem getting enough light. Nowadays I just bump up the ISO if I need a faster shutter speed. The 40D's image quality in the high ISO range is really quite good, and I no longer hesitate to shoot at ISO 800 if necessary.

    If you're looking for increased bokeh, then a wider aperture may be necessary. At full zoom, the kit lens ramps up to f/4.5, so it does limit the amount of bokeh on the 40D body. On the other hand, there have been a few times I wished I could have gotten a bit of a wider field of view. Depending on what you intend to shoot, your mileage may vary.

    -monkey
     
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