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Canon EOS 20D

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Reviews Views Date of last review
200 206305 Dec 4, 2009
Recommended By Average Price
96% of reviewers $1,355.57
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.98
8.82
9.2
20d

Specifications:
- Second Generation 8.2 Megapixel CMOS Sensor with DIGIC II Image Processor
- Professional Level High-speed Continuous Shooting
- 9-Point High-precision AF with New Multi-controller
- Enhanced Color and White Balance Settings
- Rigid Magnesium Alloy Body for Outstanding Durability
- Advanced Viewing and Printing, Powerful Software
- Compatible with all EF/EF-S Lenses and Many EOS System Accessories


 


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davidrwilliams
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Registered: Nov 15, 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 443
Review Date: Jan 10, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Very nice build, good quality images, fast frame rate, reasonable viewfinder for a cropped image field.
Cons:
Problems with obtaining consistent auto-focus accuracy even after adjustment by Canon.

Great first dSLR with very good image quality and build, but somewhat lacking in AF accuracy with lenses that have narrow depth of field characteristics.

My 20D was constantly backfocusing with 70-200/4L, and sometimes with my 50/1.4 and 100/2.8 USM Macro, so I had the camera and 70-200 serviced (together) by Canon to obtain more accurate AF. AF was better with all lenses after servicing and adjustment, but instead of consistently backfocusing, it was sometimes ok, sometimes back-focusing, and sometimes front focusing. It just seems to be a characteristic of the 20D's AF system that it's not as precise as I'd like, and I could only really rely upon the centre focus point with One-Shot AF to provide reasonably accurate focus. I could never trust the other focus points or AF Servo as I could with my EOS3.


I've now replaced my 20D with a 5D which I find focuses dead on with all AF points, virtually all the time.

Also, presumably because of the very high pixel density, the 20D is a kills lenses that have less than optimal sharpness within the 20D's cropped image field requiring very good lenses to keep up with the capability of the sensor.


Jan 10, 2006
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ewsmit
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Registered: Sep 17, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 2
Review Date: Jan 2, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,500.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: 8.2megapixel, 5fps, AF speed and price/performance ratio. Good build quality
Cons:
Shutter noisy

I have had this camera now for 6 months and I love it. Pictures are sharp. This is an excellent camera for the money. My only problem is the shutter noise. I use an Canon XT as a back uo camera and that shutter is much quieter.

Jan 2, 2006
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gisborn
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Registered: Apr 6, 2004
Location: Germany
Posts: 2
Review Date: Dec 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: lightweight,"today's technology".
Cons:
very loud shutter

the first SLR to replace my lovely D30 :-)

Dec 30, 2005
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orthopod
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Registered: Jan 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 876
Review Date: Dec 29, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,000.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Great build, Superb High Iso, Super Speedy High Capacity Buffer in JPEG, ALMOST as good as my stolen 1D, better in many ways
Cons:
6 pic buffer in RAW, Auto WB not the most accurate

I have used a 1D to take the majority of my photos, but last week got mine stolen. Weighed the pros/cons of replacing it, and the thing that bugged me most was the need to expose precisely in higher ISO or else output wasn't the greatest.

Decided to buy a 20d for its reported high ISO performance, speedy FPS, and because I already owned many canon lenses.

Of note, I sold a 300D I had as a "backup" for my 1D, it was really my wifes camera, so I have a very good perspective to compare all 3.

Build: quality is top notch. Grip is nicely textured, fits the hand well. Feels much more solid than a 300D or 350xt. Not as "heafty" as my 1D, but I am sure my wife will no longer complain if she has to use this instead of my 1D. Very pleased.

Performance: WOW...WOW. Very pleased. The camera output is great. The auto WB leaves a bit to be desired, but you should shoot RAW or use custom WB anyway...if you haven't tried it, you'll be surprised at what you're missing. The speed of autofocus with a 2.8 lens is close to my 1D, but not quite. In real life applications, I doubt this will matter. The JPEG picture buffer combined with a high 5+ FPS rate allows me to hold the shutter down and fire away with little to no lag. VEry pleased.

Overall: an excellent choice in a digital body. It offers near 1D performance (not quite as fast, but the 1D is a MARVEL!), without the weight, with a higher MPEG size, better ISO performance. A HUGE....HUGE step up from the 300D or 350xt.

NOTE: many complain about the seperate button presses needed for ISO changes, and the lack of ISO display. Although it would be nice to have always on, I find it not to be a problem yet...I always think about my ISO speed before composing anyway...press the iso button, slide the wheel, and its DONE. Not a big deal. With so little to complain about, guess you have to focus on the VERY MINOR issues.

If you are thinking about taking the jump....just do it. An unreal camera for the price. I WILL be buying a 1D MKII when the prices drop...but the 20D will be a great replacement for my missing 1D.


Dec 29, 2005
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sboerup
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Registered: Oct 13, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 9750
Review Date: Dec 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $950.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Great build, feel, ISO quality is awesome! AF is fast, larger viewfinder (than 350D), shutter. EVERYTHING
Cons:
Small LCD rather, weird location for power (not needed much if you shoot a lot). None other

After selling my 350D for this, I regret not doing it sooner (like the previous post). There are many features that I came to love after testing one, mainly was the build is a lot stronger and a lot more hefty. Feels great in your hand. The larger viewfinder is WAY easier to see in, gives a much more crisper view and easier to autofocus, AF points are a lot brighter. The image quality is AWESOME, even on .jpg. I always shoot RAW, but the .jpg wasn't bad. Custom functions were a plus, although most aren't used a whole lot. ISO boost is a help, but couldn't imagine needing to use anything more than 1600 already. This is a great camera, and if you have a 300D or a 350D, upgrade, you will love it. It feels better in your hands. The only thing I thought weird was the power switch placement, kinda out of the way (the 350D was right at your fingertip). Super camera!

Dec 20, 2005
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anndel
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Registered: Dec 18, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 18, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Almost instant on; instant shutter; shutter "click" (sounds cool); excellent build (compared to 300D); white balance.
Cons:
Small LCD, wished it was larger and easier to see in bright daylight

This was an upgrade from the 300D. After only owning it for 3 weeks and 2500 pictures, I love this camera and regret not upgrading sooner. Tried all the functions in the creative and basic modes and can't find a single flaw. A better comparison is the 20D vs. Nikon's D70 rather than the 300D.

Dec 18, 2005
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Metzarzar
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Registered: Aug 23, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 182
Review Date: Dec 12, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,300.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: 8.2megapixel, Good high ISO performance, 5fps, AF speed and price/performance ratio. Good build quality
Cons:
Shutter noise, lcd, loosing images when cf card opens, small LCD

I bought this lens about a year ago and have been very satisfied with the overall experience. I have used it for portraits, weddings, studio work and some landscapes. including dusty environments in deserts in the middle east. It performed beyond expectations. It will go in the next couple of weeks to north canada and I'll see how is will perform in extreme cold conditions.
It is a very good value for your money in comparison to the 5D. That may be diluted with the introduction of the D200 this week.

What’s hot
1. 8.2 megapixel sensor which I found to be very decent quality for enlargements up to 11x14 and sometimes 16x20 (without any cropping from the original images). I took images of the same scene and similar distance to compensate for the crop factor and did not see any difference between the 20D print and the canon A2E ones. I did not appreciate much difference in quality between the 20D and IDMkII. I have not done any resolution tests but gave the pictures to many people and no one could tell the difference from film and digital
2. 1.6x crop factor: of course if you are a landscape photographer you would list that under the cons/disadvantages. It gives you better reach esp. for portraits with relatively cheaper lenses. The option of EF-S lenses really makes this an insignificant problem at this time.
3. Very good high ISO performance, albeit a little soft at 3200. ISO 1600 very usable and definitely better than any ISO 1600 film and my previous Nikon D100.
4. 5 frames per second: In order to get good speed you really do need a fast card. I have compared the speeds on the ultra II 1gb (rated 9MB/sec) and Hitachi 3gb microdrive (rated at 9.14MB/sec), the ultra is much faster in real life
5. Excellent manual white balance setting.
6. Good viewfinder in comparison to the XT (more tunnel vision there)
7. Very good autofocus speed.
8. X-Sync speed of 250 is great for almost all studio work. Many people consider this a disadvantage and compare it to the d70. The D70 has a minimum ISO of 200 and the 20D has a minimum of 100, so they are equal.
9. Excellent and accurate colors

What’s Not
1.Lacks a separate ISO button. Multiple buttons to change ISO
2.The AF selector button you need to activate a separate button prior to using the selector. It would have been more convenient to just change it directly using the selector or better a command like button.
3.No LCD screen protector
4.Opening the battery door with loose unbuffered pictures.
5.The spot meter circle is around 7-9%. Would have been better if the meter was more focused
6.Not very discrete in quiet environments due to the loud shutter noise.
7. Smallish LCD screen




Dec 12, 2005
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jmauro
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Registered: Sep 19, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 1038
Review Date: Dec 10, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Great noiseless performance up to and including ISO 1600. Quick and accurate autofocus. Rear wheel makes it easy to quickly scroll through options and adjust settings. Built much stronger than the old 300D.
Cons:
It's not full frame

Upgraded from a 300D, I literally have at least double the keeper shots on any given day. Focus seems to be much more accurate and faster to boot. This camera body has been a massive upgrade from the 300D.

Dec 10, 2005
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incdigital
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Registered: Aug 2, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 226
Review Date: Dec 3, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Size/Weight, Great combo w/ 1Ds or 5D, Battery Power, High ISO Performance, 4.5fps, better PU flash than 10D, Easy to use , EF&EF-S Mount
Cons:
Battery Grip Accessory is the worst in years, Banding High ISO, Raw buffer is 2 small for serious Raw users, Not 5fps as advertised,

I use this w/ my 1Ds and it makes a great combo. Love the crop factor for my L telephoto lenses. Couldn't ask for anything more for the price...untill the 20D replacement is anounced at least:)



Dec 3, 2005
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Denizen
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Registered: Jul 4, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 470
Review Date: Nov 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,500.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fast, well built. Fantastic quality for a great price. The kind of camera where you're not afraid to use it and you know that you'll get great pics. Great battery life. Easy to learn and use.
Cons:
Ergonomics are a bit cramped for my taste. I had a bit of a front focusing issue with mine but Canon dealt with it very quickly.

The 5D came out a few months after I purchased my 20D and I'll admit that I was aching to set aside the 20 in favor of the 5.
After a couple of trips to the camera shop though, I have to say I really couldn't justify the price of the 5D.
The 20D is really a fantastic camera and for the price you'll pay to pick one up now, it's hard to think of a reason not to love it.


Nov 30, 2005
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JLim
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Registered: Oct 1, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 198
Review Date: Nov 24, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great value compared to the high end models.
Cons:
QC. Auto focus.

I had high hopes from this camera, but to be honest, this camera has not met my expectations.

I'll be doing weddings as an assitant and even though I got this camera not too long ago, I'll be upgrading as soon as I save up some money. Maybe get the 5D and keep this as a second?


I believe this 20D and the XT are really great for first time DSLR buyers. Easy to use and it does take pretty good pictures. But if you are very picky like myself, I would recommend going 5D or better.



Nov 24, 2005
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Sm5rc
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Registered: Mar 24, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 157
Review Date: Nov 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Build quality (doesn't feel like a toy) Instant startup from both sleep and off
Cons:
autofocus could be faster (this has cost me some shots even using 2.8 or faster glass) FPS could be faster no ISO in viewfinder

What can be said that already hasn't. This is an excellent camera for the money, sure I would like faster FPS and better autofocus but then its basicly a 1Dm2. Great fist 'action' camera and performs well in other aspects; coupled with decent glass the overall picture quality is supurb. Would buy it again today for sure.

Nov 20, 2005
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toby creamer
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Registered: Oct 5, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 179
Review Date: Nov 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Controls, quick and easy to use, the wheel on the back is great. Solid feel because of the metal body. High turning on speed and low shutter lag. 5fps, great for sport and wildlife. 1.6x crop for sport and wildlife. Custom functions, great for tweaking the controls/functions to suit you and the situation. Fast 9 point AF and the ability to select AF points. Incredible noise performance, no obvious noise with a 30 sec exposure at iso400 at night. Size and having better lenses and 'twist' zooms.
Cons:
No Iso in the viewfinder, even when you change it nothing lights up

Jessops had this at the same price as my fave. online store (www.warehouseexpress.com) which is why I got it from them as it meant I could have a look at it before I bought and compare it with the 350D. I bought it from Jessops for £950 but there is £100 coming from canon soon so overall price is £850 with the 18-55mm lens. This camera is fantastic and infinately better than my Z3 ('all' I need now is some fast glass!). The one niggle I have is that there is no ISO display in the viewfinder, even if it only popped up when you changed it would be ok but as it is you can't change&check whilst still composing the shot. I often need to change when photographing sports if the sun goes behind a cloud, for example, and it means taking my eyes off the action which I find annoying. Other than that it is great. The ability to use a real lens where you make the focus (in mf) and zoom adjustments and not some motor when you press a button is brilliant (obviously AF is good but on my Z3 there wasn't even a MF ring). The AF is fast and the frame rate is fantastic in that you get more shots of a moment but not so many that you don't know what to do with them (such as may be the case with 8.5 on the ID mkII).
In all this a fantastic camera and I would very highly reccomend it.


Nov 8, 2005
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John Daniel
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Registered: Jun 6, 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 1327
Review Date: Nov 6, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Quick focus, fast multiple shots(great for action photography), very good quality for 8X10 prints. Very low noise and usable for quality prints from ISO 100 to 800. Light, great colors. Pretty good in low light. Forgives for lower quality lenses.
Cons:
A little small, photographs a bit fussy in details especially in lanscape with a near subject at small apertures (when compared to film), but a lot better than Rebel and Rebel XT.

I have been using the 20D after selling the Rebel for a whole year in parallel to my EOS 3. It was a great camera (I say "was" because I have sold it to buy the 5D - see my 5D review). Fast focus in rather low light, great noice control compared to the 300D, 10D and older cameras from Canon. Fast multiple shots (5pps). It had great quality for bird photographs and action photographs and even "some" lanscape to be printed on 8X10. Options on type of pictures, which I did not use myself, was pretty complete from someone not used to make decisions on apertures and speed.

I do a lot of bird pictures and lanscape (city and nature) and I observed a lack on precision in details from the camera; especially for lanscape photographs with low aperture where you want details standing out from near subjects or background.

Otherwise, It was a great camera !


Nov 6, 2005
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lord_malone
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Registered: Oct 9, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 496
Review Date: Nov 1, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,329.95 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Quality build [magnesium body]. Many Pro features. Built in flash. Size and weight.
Cons:
Not FF or weather sealed. Would be nice wouldn`t it?

Is it worth paying a little extra for this over the DRXT? IMO yes. First off, much better build quality. The magnesium feel of the 20D is preferred over the cheap plastic feel of the DR any day. The 350D DR XT just feels like it would break too easily. That alone should justify the extra cost of the 20D. If it had been weather sealed it would have been perfect. The 20D feels like a pro camera even though it`s aimed at the amateurs and prosumers like myself. If it were FF I would see no point in buying a 5D.

Nov 1, 2005
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grodolfo
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Registered: Oct 31, 2005
Location: Italy
Posts: 0
Review Date: Oct 31, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Silky smooth images, low noise level even at ISO 1600, handling, ergonomics (as one would expect from a Canon EOS), burst speed and capacity. Definitely a high level EOS.
Cons:
LCD screen is too small: why not a 2.5" unit ? Screen visibility not very good in sunlight. View angle crop factor of 1.6 is definitely a disadvantage especially if one uses both a film and a digital camera and loves wide-angle lenses. Auto white balance not so good with tungsten lamps.

I like this camera very much, for its versatility and also for its ability to go up to ISO 1600 without too much noise: this is very good for available light shooting, especially indoors if one wishes to preserve the atmosphere of the subject.
Ergonomics is excellent and so is software and documentation.
Build quality leaves very little to be desired.

On the debit side, the 1.6 FOV crop factor: I have some wide angle lenses which I would like to stay wide also on 20D. I guess it's not yet the time for a full-frame sensor on an affordable SLR. Time (and patience) will tell.


Oct 31, 2005
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Canon EOS 20D

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
200 206305 Dec 4, 2009
Recommended By Average Price
96% of reviewers $1,355.57
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.98
8.82
9.2
20d


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