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346 of 354 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good upgrade from the Digital Rebel
I purchased the 20D as an upgrade from my Digital Rebel. The cost was certainly worth it.

This camera has many, many advantages to the Rebel (as I'm sure other reviewers will point out), but I thought three were worthy of mention:

ISO 1600 and 3200 have very, very low noise. This means that I am now able to get low-light shots that I never could...
Published on September 26, 2004 by N. Schweitzer

versus
47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Satisfying, except for lack of spot metering
Two months after purchasing the 20D, I'm happy with the quality of shots and of the body itself, but regretting buying a dSLR without spot metering. (Live and learn.)

The one disappointment that still bugs me about the 20D: no spot metering for back-lit situations. This often slows down getting a shot as the only work arounds are bracketting or manually...
Published on March 9, 2005 by Acontius


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346 of 354 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good upgrade from the Digital Rebel, September 26, 2004
By 
N. Schweitzer (Phoenix, AZ United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I purchased the 20D as an upgrade from my Digital Rebel. The cost was certainly worth it.

This camera has many, many advantages to the Rebel (as I'm sure other reviewers will point out), but I thought three were worthy of mention:

ISO 1600 and 3200 have very, very low noise. This means that I am now able to get low-light shots that I never could before. For example, I often take pictures of crowded streets at night. Before, I needed to use a flash or else my shots would be blurred by camera shake and the motion of people walking. Now (with the help of a f1.8 lens) I can set the camera at ISO3200 and have the shutter speed be fast enough that I can get clear images. In fact, when I use the Black & White mode, the picture is virtually noise-free.

Rapid-Fire burst mode. When the "multi-shot" function is on, this camera fires like a machine gun. It also writes the images to the memory card much faster than the Rebel ever did. I shot a series of 25 shots in 5 seconds, and it still had them all on the card 6 seconds after I stopped shooting.

Black and White mode. Not just some toy feature, when you are saving as a JPG file (not RAW), the image is actully encoded as a B&W image--meaning a smaller file size. This means more shots per card, and also more shots being able to be held in the buffer. I was actully able to record 90 frames of B&W images (JPG-Large-Fine) at full speed (5 per second) without stopping (onto a 40x CF card).

Like I said before, I'm sure there are tons of other amazing features of the 20D, but I wanted you to know my favorites.

UPDATE: Over the past few months, there have been reports that the 20D locks up on occasion. I had that happen to me only once. Canon has posted a firmware upgrade on it's website that remedies this problem (as well as a few others). I upgraded, and have not had any problems since.
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92 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Camera is a dream machine..., January 3, 2006
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I have been a Canon EOS user since film days (can we say those are nearly erstwhile yet?). I always favored my RebelG because it did what it was supposed to do very well, every time, and predictably. I also have some medium format cameras that are just fun cameras, such a twin-lens Rollei on 220 format.

For the past two years, I've owned and used a Digital Rebel with the hand grip, and loved that camera, and the pictures it makes.

Now, I feel like I was missing out on something that whole time because the 20D is all those cameras and a banana split to boot.

I pulled the camera from the box and attached a 28-135 IS, and have been snapping away ever since. The camera feels good in the hand and is easy to handle. The new control styles will take Rebel users a while to accomodate as things are moved around a little on you, but the new control system is well thought out and intuitive on its own.

Setting options on the fly is a breeze, and easier than with my Rebel because two options can be changed with each button. The thumb wheel in the back controls one, and the finger wheel controls changing the other option. For instance, to change the ISO, click the DRIVE-ISO button, and move your thumb on the back wheel. Changing the drive is done with the finger wheel. Slick. Especially when you want to change a lot of options for a quick shot.

EOS accessories work well, as expected. So far, I have attached an ancient 50/1.8 EF (mk I -- the tank lens), the 18-55 EF-S, and the 28-135 IS. Each of these lenses has worked as expected. However, the viewfinder is so much brighter than my old Rebel, that even the lenses seem new. I even used my Speedlite 380EX without hassle. I don't think the 380EX supports TTL-II (the new metering system), but the exposures came out as I have expected them to be from years of EOS use. Even better.

Picture Quality is simply phenomenal. Two years ago, I was astounded at how similarly my Digital Rebel responded as if it were film, but the 20D is not only like film, it's like perfect film. What I mean is that is no matter what you shoot (ISO 100 to 1600 to H (3200)), the image responds the way you expect film would, but you don't have to worry about graininess caused by bad film processing, or from film getting hot, etc... Shooting in H (ISO 3200) is cleaner than the old Fuji 800 I used to shoot.

Now, looking through the viewfinder is a little different: the 9-point AF layout is new to any EOS camera I have handled. The diamond shape is quite an improvement. Plus, I have noticed that the camera gives more information than my Digital Rebel did. There are AF points that dimly flash to show that an object will be in focus, but at the edge of the focal plane. Bright points are in perfect focus. It's a very nice addition to the usual feedback.

The multipoint joystick located on the back of the camera makes it easier than ever to change AF points without getting out of the viewfinder, too. Click the AF-point selecter button on the the far right and slide your thumb over to the joystick to move right to the AF point you want. It couldn't be any simpler!

ONE BIG DIFFERENCE!!!! The shutter sound is totally different than my Digital Rebel. It's louder, but sleeker sounding. The 20D sounds like it is a film camera. For people like myself, who enjoyed film shooting, it is handy to hear the mirror slap up and the shutter motor bzzzeeerrriiipppt!

Setting the drive in continuous can be a bit startling, however, if you leave your finger on the shutter. You can fire off 5 shots in a second, and it means it. bam! bam! bam! bam! bam! What's funny is to hand the camera to someone who has never used an EOS and they will snap 10 pics. Keep it in one shot if you have a mediocre CF card.

Setting in-camera parameters is very, very, very easy. One very nice addition to the 20D is the ability to make custom parameters, but also to tweak the white balance in the same way you can on the top of the line. I haven't needed to do so yet, but I can see where it will be handy in mixed lighting (flourescent/incandescent).

The bottom line is that there is really very little to hold you back from getting this camera, if you want a digital SLR. The fit and finish is awesome (even down to the nice embossed logo on the flash -- so much nicer than the screen printed logo). The styling is appropriate for an SLR (don't expect a light load if you add the battery grip, an external flash, and have a long lens). The end result is spectacular!

You should look into finding excellent printing resources to go with this camera. I use a Canon Pixma at home, and one online service that has exceptional print quality. The prints this camera can make will make you proud to see your friends and others gawking -- but be prepared to print more posters and large, large prints than ever. It's kind of nice when 4x6 just isn't enough for some prints.

The bottom line is a 5 for this camera. Canon has made each feature work well. It has provided durability (even in a 100,000 snap shutter). And it works very very well for what it is. No less than a 5.

One more thing (I can't shut up about this camera, I love it). The features of the camera mechanics themselves (such as the 1/8000 top shutter speed, and little things like 2-d curtain synch, PC synch for studio flashes, etc) are what you expect in a top-of-the line film camera. Many of the similarly featured film-based EOS cameras used to price out around $1000. Given that you never have to buy film or processing, this camera is a steal... it really is. I love it!

If you want to shoot in low light, fast action, or plain old snapshots, this camera is for you.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hey, Nice camera!, November 6, 2004
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I was a 10D user for about 1.5 years. The 10D takes great pictures so why bother upgrading right? Well, now that I have messed around with the 20D a bit it was clearly the right choice... although not totally perfect.

The useful improvements for me have been 1. Faster time from turning on the camera to taking a picture. It's virtually instantaneous. The 10D took a few seconds to get going. 2. Faster writing to the CF card. This feature is nice when you are in a hurry to take several shots and then get the pics to your computer. 3. Built-in black and white mode that allows for photo filters to be digitally applied in camera with pretty darn good results. Although I prefer to apply filters in Photoshop. 4. The taller pop-up flash works better with my 17-40mm canon lens. The 10D would leave a half circle blackout between 17-24mm due to the top of the lens blocking the flash. The taller pop-up flash shoots right over it. 5. Super low noise at ISO400 and ISO800. It's even pretty good at ISO1600. With ISO expansion on you can go to 3200 but it was pretty grainy. My 10D shows noise at 400 and above.

Things I didn't realize were going to happen: My digital workflow is a bit messed up now. I usually shoot in RAW, and I use the Macintosh OS to process images. Image capture application in MAC OS 10.3.5 does not support the raw files (now .CR2 files instead of .CRW files in the 10D). 10.3.6 update now allows image capture to recognize the .CR2 files, but it won't build previews for them. That means you have to use a file browser to manage the files. iPhoto will not read the .CR2 files. The new Camera Raw Plug-in (v2.3) for Photoshop CS supports the 20D images (but is not on the list of supported cameras.) So I now use the Photoshop CS filebrowser to look at my files and figure out which ones are good. However, I still can't build icon previews for the .CR2 files so it's a bit hard to find the pics you want in a file folder. I make contact sheets for each shoot and store them with the raw files. None of these problems exist if you shoot in any of the .JPG modes.

My top five good things and my one bad thing. I'm sure the one bad thing will go away after the camera has been out a while and becomes more popular. I would highly recommend this camera to anyone who's graduated from their Digital Rebel and is wanting more.

3-2-05 **** update: iPhoto now supports .CR2 files directly from the camera or a CF card reader. You can drag them to your photoshop icon in the doc to edit the original or you can set a preference to have the jpg preview from iPhoto open in photoshop with a double click. iPhoto, image capture, Digital photo professional, phtoshop CS, photoshop 7, photoshop elements 2, 3 still will not build icon previews viewable in the finder for .CR2 files as of this update. At least iPhoto will allow me to browse photos without having to open them in DPP.
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62 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CANON EOS 20D Amazing? YES IT IS !, September 19, 2004
By 
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Is the EOS 20D all it's cracked up to be? After using it a couple of days I have to say yes. What makes it so amazing?

My top reason, LOW NOISE even at ISO 1600. At ISO 3200 it will create a photo that is ok if you run it through Neat Image. (a free noise reduction program)

Here are some of the other reasons I love it. Excellent quality images. Virtually NO shutter lag, instantly starts up from standby, shoots 5 frames per second. I was able to shoot 32 continuous frames set at 8mp fine using a 1GB Lexar 80X CF card. It has simple to use menus. Very fast to focus (I used a Sigma 24-135mm lens.) The built in flash is good. It has a solid feel; it's light but not too light. Battery life is great; you can set it to go to standby after 1 min because it starts instantly when you press the shutter release.

I have tried to find something I can complain about but I can't. This camera is great!!!! At the price it is in a class by it's self. This is minor but the camera raw software is so so. I'm sure Adobe will update their camera raw plug-in for Photoshop before too long.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Canon delivers with the 20D, September 20, 2004
By 
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
This replacement to the 10D certainly delivers the goods. It is more like the 1D Mark II than the Digital Rebel. It writes very fast to the CF so it will take advantage of high speed cards -- I can barely notice any hit to the CF card when recording RAW files (amazing). Startup time is super quick (0.2 seconds), as is AF. Pictures are amazing even at high ISO ratings (1600 is actually not very noisy). Of course, it is a true Digital SLR, so you can exchange lenses to fit your needs and you have very fine control over how pictures are taken. As for SLRs, It does have a set of "basic" modes which help grab quick shots or allow novices to use the camera like a "Point and Shoot" camera. In addition, the Creative Mode (Advanced) let you take control of the pictures. RAW conversion is not bad, but not great either. I usually just use the Canon RAW conversion software to export to TIFF and go from there with another program. What is nice, you can have the camera record RAW and JPEG versions of each shot at the same time -- so the JPEG gets the immediately gratification and quick viewing and the RAW allows the finer control and no loss of data. Highly recommend this camera and being one of the first (few) pro/sumer DSLR to make 8.2 MP sensor -- it's a no brainer. My only complaint is you cannot record RAW or RAW+JPEG in Basic modes (only JPEG). Even at full retail price, it is a good value.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Camera... slow service from Canon Warranty, April 3, 2006
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
This is a great camera. Plenty of resolution. Excellent shot speed. Sturdy frame. The kit lense doesn't do the camera justice. Buy the body separate and add a better lense.

On the bad side, I had a small glitch with the camera's firmware soon after purchase and had to return it for a fix. It was two months before the camera was returned. Sorry, Canon... you lose a star for that.
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47 of 52 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Satisfying, except for lack of spot metering, March 9, 2005
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Two months after purchasing the 20D, I'm happy with the quality of shots and of the body itself, but regretting buying a dSLR without spot metering. (Live and learn.)

The one disappointment that still bugs me about the 20D: no spot metering for back-lit situations. This often slows down getting a shot as the only work arounds are bracketting or manually readjusting for overexposing. Yes, this can be a major pain, and "perfect" moment shots can be lost or have underexposed foreground subjects. Folks who shoot mostly in studios really should not comment on spot metering!

Don't be fooled by the partial metering like I was--it really doesn't make much of a difference over the evaluative, especially on human sized subjects! The partial metering area is simply to big to catch a proper exposure in backlit situations.

Unfortunately, the only way as of today, March 9, 2005, to get spot metering in a Canon is to buy a 1D (or 1Ds) Mark II, which is huge and much more expensive. Nikon offers the feature on the D70, so consider carefully before investing in lenses!

Other than this short-of-fatal shortcoming, the camera has few things to complain about. Great images, custom functions, and ergonomics. All things considered, I'm satisfied with the camera and have learned to work around the lack of spot metering (meaning as soon as I realize I'm in a back-lit situation I twirl to slightly overexpose--no matter how fast I twirl, however, spot metering would be faster and more efficient.)

One point playing off a few other reviews regarding firewire: In-body firewire and USB 2.0 are both virtually obsolete. For less than $20 just buy a little CF card reader that plugs directly into a PC/notebook--with or without a cable. Who wants to fiddle with a cable attached to a camera, particularly when traveling and setting up on the often cramped spaces in motel rooms? Just pop out the CF card and stick it into the reader--this lets you drag and drop the files from the card to the PC instead of patiently letting them download out of the camera.

Furthermore, using a card reader means you don't have to install the camera's clunky image download software--Windows 2000 and above handles the card readers automatically, dispaying the card contents just like they are on another drive. And all the card readers come with drivers for Windows 98.

Sincerely,

A somewhat satisfied, and wiser-after-the-fact buyer.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best for the Price, October 30, 2004
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
I've only had this a few days and I consider myself slightly beyond beginner. First, it is easy to understand overall. I was using only the LCD viewer before and this camera ONLY allows the eye viewfinder in taking pictures. It turns off the LCD for the actual photo, something I have to get used to again but is a better way to take a picture to avoid stray light problems. Fortunately, the viewfinder has adjustments for near-sighted folks like me and it is bigger than in my other cameras, a plus.

I thought a camera producing photos of high quality would be more complex - this is not. I wish I could turn the flash off in combination with macro in automatic mode, though - but no such ability. At any rate, the macro pictures with the flash were fantastic. The lenses are the best. I've had no problems with the picture quality using flash. Other flash accessories are available if the built-in one doesn't suit you or use the flash settings - they are not difficult to learn. And get the EF-S 17-85mm lens instead of the default one. It's worth every penny for the anti-shake ability alone.

Second, the 8.2 mp pictures are the best for a camera in this price range or lower. I had done much research before purchasing the 20D. Other cameras doing 8 mp or less have issues that the 20D does not have. This is a little treasure that I plan to use for years.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic serious amateur or even semi-pro body, December 22, 2004
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
This camera has been reviewed to death so i'll be brief. I needed this for wedding photos. The Digital Rebel was slow to start and come out of 'sleep', buffer was tiny, slow to save pictures to CF card, had no PC Sync port, had occassional focus problems, plasticky body. The 20D solves almost all those problems. low light focusing still needs infrared/flash help, but the buffer is LARGE, file saving is FAST, and this makes for a great all around pro-sumer camera body.

Only gripe is that mirror is tiny and for those of you (like me) used to bigger mirrors from film 35mm cameras...yo'ull find the light coming through the viewfinder is MUCH dimmer. this makes manual focus all but impossible in low light situations.

i'd get this again in an instant. if you have the extra $, get the vertical grip.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Giant Digital SLR Camera, November 26, 2005
By 
This review is from: Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL) (Electronics)
Without doubt this camera is impressive. The moment you put the 20D into your hands you feel at home with it. The 20D just feels impressive and taking images with this camera is a joy, though more demanding than your normal point and shoot digital camera. Getting to know your 20D will pay lots of dividends in the long run and I would suggest that owners of the 20D read the instruction manual and then read it again, while trying out all the many and varied functions.

It is important with a digital SLR to choose quality lenses. If you buy cheap don't be surprised if your resulting images lack the quality that they could command. A quality flash gun like the 580 EX Speedlite will further help your image taking. Furthermore, I find the BG-E2 Battery Grip - which holds an extra battery - an important accessory along with the Remote Switch RS-80N3 to minimize camera shake. On the memory front, choose well! Cheap memory can result in the loss of those precious images you have spent so long taking. And make sure you have enough memory because an 8 MP digital SLR on RAW mode eats up images at an alarming rate. Personally I have three 1 GB memory cards and still I don't think this is enough.

Once you are set up with everything you will find taking images with the 20D brings you many hours, days, months and in the end no doubt years of fun. The shutter is noisy making the 20D limited for wildlife work but when taking images of landscapes, people or my personal favourite, macro work, then this camera has the lot. You get the build quality of Canon's professional cameras without the price tag. The 20D is heavy, especially with the battery grip and a quality lens attached, so be prepared to use a tripod to help you avoid camera shake.

This camera is beautiful and the little niggles I have over the focusing system etc have not stopped me loving the 20D to bits.
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Canon EOS 20D DSLR Camera (Body Only) (OLD MODEL)
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