First Impressions of the 400D

Discussion in 'Australia Photography' started by Graham Fountain, Sep 8, 2006.

  1. Haven't had a chance to shoot anything yet, but was able to have a short
    play with one today. These are my first impressions, based on about a 5
    minute quick fiddle.
    Firstly, it looks very similar to the 350D. First physical change I
    noticed was a bit of a pad area on the front recess where your fingers
    go. I hated the feel of the 350D in my hand, it actually gave me
    blisters on my knuckles when I used one extensively one day. Despite
    being pretty much exactly the same size, the slight tweaks on the 400D
    make it feel infinitely better - in my hand anyway. It almost feels as
    comfortable as a 30D to hold, despite the small size. Still not quite as
    nice to hang onto as the *istD but close. (This is totally a personal
    judgement - someone else might feel totally opposite).
    Next thing noticed was the big screen. Power it on, and it displays the
    information that used to be in the 350's small LCD on the big display.
    It came up as black text/icons on a bright white background. Not sure if
    I'd like that combination in low light, I haven't had a good enough look
    yet to see if the colours can be altered. The screen is significantly
    bigger than the 350D, so in theory should give a bit better view of the
    photos you have just taken. I suspect however that because of the bigger
    screen and the fact that it will be used more (information rather than
    just last shot and menus), that battery life will be reduced on the 400D.
    A nice touch though is the infrared sensor just below the eyepiece. As
    soon as you bring it to your face, the bright screen blanks out. Yay -
    that was one of my big gripes about the Olympus DSLRs - in low light you
    couldn't see anything because of the glowing screen just below your eye.
    Unlike the Sony Alpha however, the infrared sensor doesn't also initiate
    autofocus. You still have to half press the shutter button to get the AF
    to work. That's no big deal though.
    The viewfinder looks practically identical to the 350D, except for the
    change to AF points. It now has 9 AF points ala 30D. Focussing with the
    kit lens seemed exactly the same as the 350D.
    Turn it off, and for a couple of seconds "Cleaning Sensor" appears on
    the back screen. Something that should have been in them a long time
    ago, but at least they have finally implemented it. I wonder how
    effective it is? I wasn't about to splash a bit of dust around to find
    out! This feature alone is probably worth the upgrade from an earlier model.

    Conclusion - Without having taken any photos (and after all, that's what
    a camera is all about), it's impossible to say just how much the camera
    has improved. Personally, I would never have considered buying a 350D
    because they are just too damned uncomfortable in my hand - otherwise
    they are a good camera. The 400D fixes that problem. For someone who
    doesn't have difficulty holding a 350D, then the differences seem a
    little more subtle. Personally although I like the big screen, I don't
    like the absence of the LCD. I don't think it sets any new benchmarks
    like the 300D did - I think it is more a refinement of the 350D,
    including a few things that probably should have been on the 350D.
    Hopefully, all going well, I'll get to take one on a bit better roadtest
    in the next week or so, and actually have some images to compare.
    Graham Fountain, Sep 8, 2006
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  2. Graham Fountain

    Rob & Sue Guest

    Just wondeing if you are the Graham Fountain from the CFA
    Rob & Sue, Sep 11, 2006
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  3. from the what?
    Graham Fountain, Sep 11, 2006
  4. Graham Fountain

    Pete D Guest

    Country Fire Authority?
    Pete D, Sep 11, 2006
  5. Graham Fountain

    Bill Funk Guest

    Cat Fanciers Association?
    Bill Funk, Sep 11, 2006
  6. Graham Fountain

    Noons Guest

    Canon Fondlers All-stars.
    Noons, Sep 11, 2006
  7. Graham Fountain

    grumpy Guest

    Crippled Farters Anonymous.
    grumpy, Sep 11, 2006
  8. Graham Fountain

    Guest Guest

    Can't Find Acronym
    Guest, Sep 12, 2006
  9. Graham Fountain

    Fred Guest

    you win!
    Fred, Sep 12, 2006
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