The 15-megapixel Canon 50D digital SLR builds upon the strengths of the 40D with a higher pixel count, a revamped image processor and a higher resolution LCD screen. But what makes it a vast improvement over the 40D? The What Digital Camera Canon EOS 50D review investigates...
What to make of the Canon EOS 50D. On the one hand, there are several ‘upgrades’ to the 40D that will appeal to a range of photographers. If you’re someone who needs to either enlarge your prints or values the ability to crop your images without losing too much detail, then the extra 5MP in resolution will no doubt meet your satisfaction. The ‘upgrade’ to the LCD screen will have more widespread appeal, with it benefiting both the viewing angle of the screen and, ultimately, the ability to accurately view and review images taken on the camera.
However, these improvements come at a cost – both financially and with regards to performance. The battery life of the 50D has taken a hit to the tune of about 20% by means of trying to facilitate all the new technologies, for example. And despite all the innovations, no improvements have been made to the continuous shooting speed.
You also have to bear in mind the financial cost of the ‘upgrade’. If you reverse the sales pitch and consider that in purchasing the 40D, for example, you?ll be getting an awful lot of the 50D, but at a fraction of the cost, the decision seems quite a bit more complicated than previously.
And all this is without considering its peer group. When Nikon’s D300 was released it widely impressed with its stunning noise control, build quality and general feel, where the 50D just doesn’t have the same ‘wow’ factor in either image quality or handling.
The 50D seems a bit like a ‘quick fix’ for Canon, looking to plug an area of the market without actually breaking any real new ground. Yes, it produces excellent images in good lighting conditions, but is that really enough to merit the price tag when competitors have released excellent models in the same field?