Canon EOS 50D
|Type||Digital Single-lens reflex|
|Sensor||22.3 × 14.9 mm CMOS (1.6x conversion factor)|
|Maximum resolution||4752 × 3168 (15.1 megapixels)|
|Lens||Interchangeable (EF, EF-S)|
|Flash||pop-up, sync at 1/250 second|
|Shutter speed range||30 s to 1/8000 s, bulb|
|ASA/ISO range||100–3200 in 1/3 EV steps; 6400 and 12800 expansion available|
|Exposure metering||TTL, full aperture, zones|
|Exposure modes||Full auto, programmed, shutter-priority, aperture priority, manual|
|Metering modes||35-area Evaluative, Partial, Spot, C/Wgt Average|
|Focus areas||9 user points (cross type)|
|Focus modes||One-shot, AI Servo, AI-Focus, Manual|
|Continuous shooting||3 or 6.3 frames/second|
|Viewfinder||Optical, pentaprism/ LiveView LCD|
|Custom WB||7 presets, Auto and custom 2000–10000 kelvin, 100 K steps|
|WB bracketing||3 images, ±9 levels|
|Rear LCD monitor||3.0 in (76 mm), 640 × 480 pixel (307,200 pixels), 267 ppi|
|Storage||CompactFlash (CF) (Type I or Type II) and Microdrive (max 32GB)|
|Battery||Li-Ion BP-511A rechargeable|
|Optional battery packs||BP-511A, BP-514, BP-511, BP-512.
BG-E2N grip allows use of AA batteries.
|Dimensions||146 mm × 108 mm × 74 mm|
|Weight||730 g or 1.61 lb (body only)|
Overview and features
The 50D has many similar characteristics to its predecessor, the 40D. This includes various shooting modes, the ability to change ISO and white balance, a pop-up flash unit, and an LCD screen. The LCD screen is the same size (3.0") as the 40D but has a higher resolution (640 × 480 pixel or 307,200 pixels) than any previous model. It is also the final Canon xxD to use a CompactFlash or Microdrive for memory storage, along with the BP-511 series battery.
The 50D has a higher pixel count (15.1 megapixels), hence higher shooting resolutions, than its predecessor and, like the 40D, has a 14-bit RAW format.
The camera has Live View, which allows photographers to use the LCD screen as the viewfinder. Because the sensor mirror needs to be in the locked position (see Live preview), shutter noise is reduced in this mode.
- 15.1 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
- 3.0 inch VGA LCD monitor
- LiveView mode
- Wide 9 point AF with center cross-type sensors
- Selectable AF and metering modes
- Built-in flash
- Canon EOS Integrated Cleaning System
- ISO 100–3200 (6400 and 12800 with custom function)
- Auto correction of vignetting
- Continuous Drive up to 6.3 fps (90 images (JPEG), 16 images (RAW))
- DIGIC 4 image processor
- Canon EF/EF-S Lenses
- Canon EX Speedlites
- PAL/NTSC/HDMI video output
- File Formats include: JPEG, RAW, sRAW1 (7.1 MP) and sRAW2 (3.8 MP)
- RAW & JPEG simultaneous recording
- USB 2.0 computer interface
- BP-511/BP-511A or BP-512/BP-514 Battery Types (BP-511A battery supplied)
- Dimensions 146 × 108 × 74 mm (5.7 × 4.2 × 2.9 in)
- Approx weight 730 g (1.61 lb)
Changes over the 40D include a higher-resolution sensor (15.1 megapixel instead of 10.1 megapixel).
The ISO goes up to 3200 in standard mode, and can be increased to 12800 through the use of a custom function. The burst rate is the same as on the 40D, 6.3 frames per second, though the 40D was advertised as 6.5.
The camera uses Canon's DIGIC 4 image processor. The processor delivers more responsive operation, improved color rendition and near-instant start-up time. A new sensor cleaning system has also been introduced. The camera can also use the Canon Wireless File Transmitter WFT-E3/E3A.
The 50D has a 3" screen – the same size as the 40D – but the resolution is 640×480 pixels, which allows it to show more image detail than any of Canon's previous 3" LCD displays. The 50D features two new Autofocus Modes in Liveview and an HDMI port.
Image quality and noise
The 50D adds 5 megapixels to an APS-C sized sensor (compared to the 40D), and as a result the size of the individual photosensors has decreased. To offset the increased noise that inevitably results from smaller photosensors, Canon eliminated the gaps between the microlenses covering the photosensors. Thus the microlenses are larger, and capture more light and direct it to the sensor sites.
The Canon EOS 50D received generally favourable reviews. Digital Photography Review concluded: "Looking at the specification differences between the EOS 40D and our test candidate it appears you pay quite a premium for the 50D's extra megapixels and as we've found out during this review you don't get an awful lot of extra image quality for your money. The Canon EOS 50D still earns itself our highest reward but considering its price point and our slight concerns about its pixel-packed sensor, it only does so by a whisker." Gordon Laing of CameraLabs.com had a slightly better view of the camera, noting that "Canon’s bold claims of matching the noise levels of the earlier EOS 40D were confirmed in our High ISO tests," and concluded by calling it "a very capable DSLR that handles confidently, delivers great results and is a joy to use. . . .[but] to exploit that high resolution you’ll need to couple it with a decent quality lens."
Magic Lantern Video
As of 2013 there has been Magic Lantern (firmware) development of 50D video support. The 50D compares favorable to many later Canon APS-C models in terms of light sensitivity: "The camera is also a totally unbelievable low light performer. The 50D was designed before the megapixel race really took off. It has a 15MP APS-C sensor, so individual pixels are much larger than those on the later 18MP Rebel CMOS sensors.". In addition to raw video, the Magic Lantern firmware add-on also enabled high bitrate compressed H.264 video at 30 frames per second, which had been disabled in official 50D firmware. Other publications, while impressed, pointed out downsides such as no audio, expensive fast CF-cards and no official Canon support for the firmware.
- "Canon Camera Museum – Technology Hall – EOS 50D". Canon. 2008-11-16. Archived from the original on 2013-06-05. Retrieved 2014-08-22.
- "Outstanding speed and resolution for the discerning photographer: the EOS 50D" (Press release). Canon. 26 August 2008. Retrieved 26 August 2008.
- Canon counts the sub-pixels of each pixel, i.e. the red, green, and blue channel of each pixel, and therefore specifies the rear display to have 307,200 × 3 = 921,600 or ca. 921,000 dots.
- Askey, Phil (October 2007). "Continuous Drive mode". dpreview.com. p. 13. Retrieved 2 December 2009.
- Rehm, Lars; Butler, Richard (October 2008). "Canon EOS 50D Review: Conclusion". dpreview.com. Retrieved 27 October 2011.
- Laing, Gordon (October 2008). "Canon EOS 50D verdict". CameraLabs.com. Retrieved 27 October 2011.
- Reid, Andrew. "It lives! 5 year old $350 Canon 50D becomes raw cinema monster". Retrieved 6 November 2013.
- Reid, Andrew. "Canon 50D Magic Lantern raw review".
- "Magic Lantern enables Canon EOS 50D raw video output". Digital Photography Review.
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