Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Nikon: 2 - Canon: 0

So uh.... as the title would suggest... Nikon is wiping the floor with Canon's non-creative asses. Sorry for the harsh language, but Nikon has not only surpassed Canon in just about every way possible, but made them look REALLY silly while doing it... as a friend put it... "man, nikon's totally slapping canon silly right now it's not even a fair fight... it's like michael phelps vs george lucas in 100m butterfly".

Keep in mind both my friend and I are Canon shooters... at least for now. Late August is usually a very exciting time for photographers as this is the pre-Photokina announcement season where all the big companies come out with some of their best stuff (the other hot season is around December for the PMA show). I've been waiting and waiting for a breakthrough by Canon. I wasn't just looking for a Canon 5D MK II (or whatever name it is given), but I was hoping for something revolutionary. Some signs of life to show that Canon's huge R&D department isn't just show... that they are good for something. Clearly, I was wrong.

This week Canon announced their newest camera... Canon 50D... yes folks, no full frame 5D replacement in sight yet... To give them credit, the 50D is a large upgrade from 40D (at least technically speaking). The key specs seems to be 15.1mp (up from 10.1), ISO 100-3200 (with 12800 as expansion) which is up from 1600 with 3200 as expansion. This alone is pretty impressive, a large increase in pixel density without increasing sensor size AND dramatically lowering the noise all at the same time? Sounds great! I can't wait to see some of the test shots. The 50D also includes a few interesting features like ability to adjust the focus for all lenses (or enter lens specific adjustments), improved live view, peripheral lighting adjustment, and a much better 3.0" LCD. Oh and of course this is the first camera with the brand new DIGIC IV image processor with new menu layout and stuff... all pretty cool stuff. Initial hands on impression available at http://www.dpreview.com/previews/canoneos50d/. Also announced is a new EF-S lens, 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens. I'm weary of the image quality of super zooms like these... especially at about 600 without USM... anyways, you can read more about it at http://www.dpreview.com/news/0808/08082604canonef-s_18-200mm.asp.

So... it's not THAT bad, it's just not ground breaking, nothing special, more or less natural progression from the previous generation. Typical safe move. Now Nikon on the other hand has really been tearing up a store in the DSLR world... first D300 and D3, then D700, and now the latest... D90 (replacement for the D80). Now I don't know a whole lot about Nikon and their cameras... but I don't need to know much to appreciate the D90. Apparently Nikon has managed to release the first ever DSLR with video mode... yes VIDEO MODE. The D90 is capable of recording HD video (1280x720) at 24 fps... I mean wasn't that the biggest reason people liked point and shoots? That they can take pictures AND videos at the same time? Well guess what... now you can do that with DSLRs and do it 10x better. Imagine recording a video with a fisheye lens... or a 50mm 1.4 with super shallow DOF, or a 80-200mm VR lens... my goodness. Nikon has really changed the market with this one I think... Hands on preview available at http://www.dpreview.com/previews/nikond90/... I don't see how Canon can catch up (in the near future at least), Nikon has just been revolutionizing the market one camera level at a time....