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Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

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Price as Reviewed:


Canon’s EOS-1D Mark III failed to impress some professional photographers, but perhaps the new 16.1-million-pixel Canon EOS-1D Mark IV version will regain their confidence


In many situations the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV captures superbly detailed images with natural, yet punchy colours. The AF system performs well, even in low light, although it is worth paying for fast lenses that get the best from it. Users also need to spend time experimenting with the system so the right options are selected for each subject and situation.

Comparing the results from the EOS-1D Mark IV at ISO 102,400 with those from the Nikon D3S suggests that Canon has felt the need to match its competitor’s maximum sensitivity setting, even though the image quality is short of what we usually see from a Canon camera. I recommend keeping to the native sensitivity settings where possible.

Canon has said that it wants to ensure EOS-1D Mark III users have an easy transition to the EOS-1D Mark IV, which I understand, but I am surprised that the manufacturer hasn’t taken the opportunity to introduce some of the changes we have seen lower down its DSLR line-up. To be fair, these are refinements to a system that works very well and if I had a spare £3,800 I’d be very tempted by the EOS-1D Mark IV.

Canon EOS-ID Mark IV – Key Features


In addition to evaluative metering, partial, spot and centreweighted average metering are available. Partial metering measures from an area at the centre of the scene, covering about 13.5% of the viewfinder. The spot meter lacks the precision of some other cameras and covers an area of around 3.8% of the viewfinder area.

Video recording
At 1920×1080 pixels (Full HD), video may be recorded at 30p, 25p or 24p fps, while 60p or 50p fps recording is possible at HD (1280×720 pixels) and SD (640×480 pixels) resolution.

FEL button
This can be used to start video recording, lock flash exposure or for taking multiple spot meter readings.

Peripheral illumination correction
Data for 29 lenses is pre-installed, but data for up to 40 lenses can be stored so corner shading can be corrected automatically.

Function button
This button provides access to the white balance and memory card/image size and quality options.

Vertical grip with speaker hole
The buttons to the right provide control over the AF, exposure lock and image magnification when the camera is used in the vertical orientation.

Three raw file sizes
There are three raw file sizes available on the EOS-1D Mark IV: four-million-pixel (2448×1632-pixel) S-raw, a nine-million-pixel (3672×2448-pixel) M-raw (Medium-raw) option and the standard 16-million-pixel raw size (4896×3264 pixels). There are also four JPEG image sizes and ten compression ratios.

Memory cards
The EOS-1D Mark IV has two card slots, one for CompactFlash and the other for SD (and SDHC) media. The photographer can specify how images are saved when both slots are occupied. Images can be stored at different sizes or formats (JPEG or raw) on each card, or movies can be stored on one card and still images on the other.

  • Dioptre Adjustment: -3 to +1 dioptre
  • White Balance: Auto, 6 presets, plus 5 custom and Kelvin settings (2,500-10,000K)
  • Built-in Flash: No
  • Shutter Type: Electronically controlled focal-plane
  • Memory Card: CF and SD/SDHC (not SDXC)
  • Viewfinder Type: Optical
  • Output Size: 4896x3264 pixels
  • LCD: 3in, 920,000 dots (307,000 pixels)
  • Field of View: Approx 100% with 0.76x magnification and 20mm eye-point
  • AF Points: Reflex mode: 45 automatically or manually selectable points. Live View mode: 45-point phase detection in Quick mode or single vari-zone selection contrast detection in Live Mode; face detection
  • White Balance Bracket: 3 exposures with blue/amber & magenta/green adjustment
  • Sensor: CMOS sensor with 16.1 million effective pixels
  • Max Flash Sync: 1/300sec with EOS-dedicated external Speedlite flashgun
  • Focal Length Mag: 1.3x
  • Exposure Modes: PASM
  • Weight: 1,180g (without battery or card/s)
  • Power: Rechargeable Li-Ion LP-E4 battery (supplied)
  • File Format: Raw, S-raw (4MP), M-raw (9MP) JPEG, raw (any size) and JPEG simultaneously
  • Drive Mode: Single, high-speed continuous, low-speed continuous, self-timer (2sec or 10sec delay), silent single shooting, mirror lock-up
  • Shutter Speeds: 60-1/8000sec in 1⁄3 steps plus bulb
  • Colour Space: Adobe RGB, sRGB
  • Exposure Comp: ±3EV in 1⁄3 or 1/2EV steps
  • RRP: £4,799.99
  • Lens Mount: EF
  • ISO: ISO 100-12,800 in 1/3EV or 1EV steps, expandable to include L1 (ISO 50), H1 (ISO 25,600), H2 (ISO 52,600) and H3 (ISO 102,400)
  • Focusing Modes: Manual, one-shot, AI Servo (continuous) AF
  • DoF Preview: Yes
  • Dimensions: 156x156.6x79.9mm
  • Metering System: 63-zone evaluative, centreweighted, spot (3.8%) and partial (13.5%)
  • Connectivity / Interface: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed/HDMI
  • Compression: 10-stage JPEG
  • Tested as: Professional - level DSLR

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