very large focus detection area and choice in the number
of active AF points makes the EOS-1 V highly versatile
and reliable in AF operation. (EF 500mm f/4L IS USM
and EF 1.4x; at f/11 in evaluative metering at +1/3
EV; Gitzo tripod; Ektachrome E100VS.)
Photos © Peter K. Burian, 2000
Canon's EOS-1 V is
an entirely new camera, dubbed as "the world's fastest"
due to its 10 fps ability. While it does include some EOS-3 features,
the technology has been upgraded since that model was designed. As well,
the EOS-1 V offers unique construction, extra versatility, and higher
I can offer the following preliminary comments about the EOS-1 V. These
are based on my discussions with Canon, additional technical research,
plus a week of field shooting experience with Arthur Morris using a
New Technology. Although some EOS-1 V features seem to be "borrowed"
from the EOS-3, they are not technically identical. Without getting
into a lot of esoteric detail as to exactly how they differ, let's
take a look at the most significant design and engineering features
of the EOS-1 V.
In order to reduce the time of viewfinder blackout and to achieve 10
fps shooting ability, Canon used new technology to "suppress mirror
bound." In practical terms this means that viewfinder blackout
time is a mere 87ms vs. 140ms with the EOS-1N while calculation time
for exposure and focus are noticeably shorter. For high-speed operation,
the camera's internal motors are equipped with new gears plus
rubber bushings for less noise and vibration. The sprocketless film
transport system--with optical detection--ensures high-speed
and accuracy even at 10 fps advance.
EOS-1 V is definitely the fastest EOS camera ever. This
makes capturing the decisive moment much easier than ever.
(EF 500mm f/4L IS USM at f/5.6; evaluative meter; Manfrotto
tripod; Elite Chrome 100.)
The camera boasts a magnesium
alloy top and front cover. This metal is extremely rigid and light, and
serves as an excellent electromechanical shield. (Power Booster PB-E2
also has a magnesium alloy cover.) The mirror box is made of die-cast
aluminum and the rest of the body is a hybrid: die-cast aluminum and glass-fiber
reinforced polycarbonate resin. The EOS-1 V is incredibly well sealed
against rain and dust at some 72 areas with silicone rubber covers, washers,
"boots," O-rings plus 10 coats of silicone over the body.
The lens mount perimeter features a water-resistant O-ring--like
the mounts of the new super-telephoto IS lenses--making the combination
especially useful in rainy climates.
A non-contact rotary magnet shutter virtually eliminates the risk of mechanical
failure; two shutter blades are made of carbon fiber and three of ultra-duralumin
for greater durability. The mechanism is tested for reliability during
150,000 cycles vs. the more common 100,000 cycles for the EOS-1. Other
precautions are taken for the sake of the camera's durability: anti-friction
components in motors, driver levers, and bearings.
The EOS-1 V employs a Z-shaped optical path and a large, oval secondary
mirror to deliver a wide light band to the autofocus sensor. The AF unit
contains a glass molded secondary image-forming lens for AF reliability--"a
first in an SLR camera." A new CMOS autofocus sensor--introduced
in the EOS-3--is employed here too but with a more effective light
sensing area; it has a capacity of 10,724 pixels on the larger (11.3x6mm)
new evaluative metering system is surprisingly successful
in backlighting and with subjects of high reflectance such
as this, especially in sunny conditions. (EF 500mm f/4L
IS USM at f/8; at +1/3EV; Manfrotto tripod; Provia 100F
at EI 200.
With lenses of f/2.8
or wider maximum aperture, seven cross type sensors ensure focus on most
any type of pattern, appreciated by pros using some of the many "fast"
EF lenses of this type. In AI Servo focus, the EOS-1 V can track a subject
approaching at a speed of 30mph until it reaches a point 26.2' from
the camera--even when shooting at an incredible 9 fps. The AF system's
new algorithm uses more focusing data than previous models did, for "predictive
focusing that is unmatched by any other current AF SLR camera."
The 32-bit microcomputer that handles AF calculation is the most powerful
in EOS history, with 33.3MHz clock speed: the fastest of any CPU in EOS
cameras. This ensures quick focusing with the 45-point AF sensor, at least
as quick as with the simpler 5-point sensor of the EOS-1N. Canon indicates
that the EOS-1 V offers "one of the world's fastest AF speeds
when a focusing point is manually selected." Shutter release time
lag has been reduced to a mere 55ms.
EOS-1 V Features
· Greater use of metal for increased durability and sealing for
weather-resistance; new shutter tested for 150,000 cycles.
· 10 fps film advance--9 fps in predictive AI Servo autofocus;
requires optional PB-E2 and Ni-MH battery pack for these speeds.
· Reduced time lag and viewfinder blackout time; brighter finder
· 45-point AF sensor; single, 11 or 9 points can be selected; new
button for instant return to any pre-designated focus point; additional
cross-hatched sensors for greater reliability; single sensor continues
operating with lens/accessory combination of f/8 maximum aperture.
· Upgraded 21 zone evaluative meter plus multi-spot and focus-point-linked
spot metering; 21 zone E-TTL flash sensor.
· Standard flash synch at up to 1/250 sec; with EX-series Speedlites:
high-speed (FP) synch to 1/8000 sec, Flash Exposure Lock and Bracketing,
modeling light support; plus wireless remote E-TTL flash with adjustable
· Optional EOS Link cable and software allows customization of camera,
data download to a PC, data management, etc.
· Built-in memory for shooting data for 100 rolls, transferred via
optional EOS Link; also, film roll ID No. imprinting on Frame 0 possible
with standard back.
· 20 Custom Functions (with 63 settings); also, 31 Personal Functions
with EOS Link.
Preliminary Evaluation. I made the following notes while shooting and
reviewing my slides:
· The EOS-1 V looks and handles very much like an EOS-1N, and is
only 3 oz heavier. It has similar controls, plus a few borrowed from the
EOS-3; the transition from either of those models is simple. A few of
the new camera's controls have been refined. These are more logical
and better marked; few are "hidden" behind the palm door.
I especially liked the full-time battery check, more accessible Drive
mode selector, and brighter viewfinder displays.
· The increased choice in the number of active AF points makes the
camera highly versatile. The new button for returning instantly to any,
single pre-selected AF sensor offers a definite advantage while the large
(8x15mm) focus detection area will make sports photography very effective.
The ability to shoot action subjects at 9 fps--with predictive autofocus--will
be a real benefit at ski and other racing events.
· The evaluative metering system was highly successful in backlighting,
and often required no compensation with white egrets. The multi-spot meter
is ideal for personalized exposure in high contrast situations.
· The extra Custom Functions--plus 31 Personal Functions accessed
via EOS Link--make the camera even more suitable for every owner.
· The flash capabilities of the EOS-1 V are light years ahead of
those of the EOS-1N, in automation, convenience, and personal control.
Since I frequently use fill-in flash outdoors with f/2.8 lenses, the high-speed
synch feature will be valuable in depth of field control.
Conclusion. If you're a photo enthusiast don't overlook
the EOS-3; in addition to many similar features, it's lighter, more
affordable, and offers built-in flash plus Eye Controlled Focus. Working
pros who want a camera that's extremely rugged and weatherproof--for
use in any condition during an assignment--will definitely want the
EOS-1 V. As a bonus, they'll find that it's also super fast,
unusually versatile, fully controllable, highly reliable and capable of
achieving any effect the photographer intends.
Contact Canon U.S.A. Inc., One Canon Plaza, Lake Success, NY 11042; (516)