Brief review Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II

Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II

Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II with 450.000 miles. increase.

The Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II was introduced on September 21, 2004 and became legendary at the time of its announcement. For its time, it was a huge leap in image quality.

The main features of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II, which are worth paying attention to:

  1. 17 MP full-frame CMOS sensor, maximum image size 4992 X 3328. Somehow I managed to get images of 5001 X 3334 pixels many times (Examples). Maybe someone can tell me how and why? For example, Nikon caught up with 17 MP in the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II only 4 years later, with the release Nikon D3x at the end of 2008 year
  2. There are legends on the web that the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II produces the 'best' color of any Canon EOS full-frame camera. There are also rumors that this is the last digital camera from Canon, the development of the image processor of which was also guided by the nature of the image that film shots give out. I do not share this optimism, however, it should be noted that the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II has its own pleasant color
  3. the ability to use ISO 50 (in the camera, this ISO value is referred to as 'L' [Low - low]) and ISO 3200 (in the camera, this ISO value is referred to as 'H' [HIGH - high]). At high ISOs, the camera makes noise at the level of the first Canon EOS 5D and is significantly inferior to more modern full-frame models.
  4. DIGIC II processor, which is used in models 1D MarkII, 1D Mark IIn, 20D, 20Da, 30D, 350D, 400D и 5D
  5. the ability to use a shutter speed of 1/8000 second
  6. frame buffer 11 RAW shots (at ISO 100) or 19 JPEG L shots (at ISO 50)
  7. the camera can easily create very heavy JPEG files that can reach 15-19 MB. RAW files are up to 25MB.
  8. 4fps continuous shooting (faster than 5D, 5D MarkII, 1 Rev)
  9. high write speed to a memory card, which is about 10 megabytes per second when using fast memory cards. At the same time, the recording speed is the same for both SD cards and CF cards. True, even this recording speed is not enough for comfortable shooting in RAW format. After the buffer is full, the burst rate in RAW format drops to 1 frame every one and a half to two seconds.
  10. simultaneous support for two memory cards: CF (normally works with up to 128 GB inclusive) and SD / SDHC (normally works with up to 32 GB inclusive). Various methods of recording to memory cards are available, there is the possibility of duplication, but there is no way to split RAW + JPEG into different cards.
  11. reliable protected combo body, long shutter life
  12. modern analogs of the original battery can withstand more than 4000 frames on a single charge
  13. nice viewfinder, 100% coverage, magnification 0.7x
  14. 45 focus points, 7 cruciform, high accuracy cruciform center point. The same module is used by models 1 Rev, 1D, 1D MarkII и 1D Mark IIn. In difficult shooting conditions, for example, in poor lighting, the focus module can 'get lost' and does not do its job well. In good light, autofocus works very well.
  15. many fine adjustments C.Fn
  16. tiny display of 2 inches and 230.000 dots with very poor viewing angles
  17. big weight: 1200 grams (with battery)

Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is a very cheap "one" that remains relevant to this day. The image quality and speed of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is significantly higher than the previous model Canon EOS-1 Ds. There are rumors on the net that with the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II it is difficult to get a sharp image at the edges and corners of the image. This misconception is due to the interpretation of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II review on DPREVIEW.

The control of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is very unusual, complex, the same as that of Canon EOS-1 Ds. It is very difficult to use the menu and some quick functions at first. The difficulty lies in the fact that there is no activation button for one or another menu item, moving through the menu items requires constantly holding the MENU or SELECT button, and the activation of one or another menu item occurs when the MENU / SELECT control buttons are released. You can get used to the controls in a couple of days.

When choosing a super-budget full frame based on the Canon EF mount, I would follow this sequence (priority changes from high to low): 6D -> 5D MARK II -> 1 DS MARK II -> 5D CLASSIC -> 1 DS.

I don't really like the EOS-1D series of 1.3X 'ones':

For creative shooting and just about any slow-paced shoot, I would prefer any budget full frame.

The EOS-1Ds series of full-frame "ones" is very small, and each of its models is a milestone in the development of cameras:

In the future, this line was updated to a series of 'ones' EOS-1DX:

It is worth highlighting the very popular full-frame SLR cameras of the EOS 5D series:

And amateur full-frame SLR cameras of the 6D series:

In the future, the full frame migrated to the ranks of mirrorless solutions based on the system Canon EOS.

Sample Photos

Below are shots from about a dozen different lenses. The original RAW images were run through Canon Digital Photo Professional 4.

More sample photos on the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II with original RAW ('.CR2') and JPEG ('.JPG') can be found in the reviews of the following lenses:

  1. Canon EF 200mm 1:2 L USM IS
  2. Canon EF 200mm 1:2.8 L II USM
  3. Canon EF 100-400mm 1: 4.5-5.6L IS II USM
  4. Canon FL 58mm 1: 1.2
  5. Canon FD 50mm 1: 1.2
  6. SMC Pentax-A 1:1.4 50mm
  7. SMC Pentax-M 1: 2 50mm
  8. Super-Takumar 1: 1.9 / 85
  9. Super-Takumar 1: 2 / 35
  10. Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 1: 3.5 / 24

My experience

I was already in Radozhiv review Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II from one of the readers. But I decided to release my short review, and pointed out some key points. The Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is a very unusual and enjoyable camera. The most important thing is to get used to its management. I bought the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II because of the good reviews on the internet. First of all, I was interested in the color of her image. As a result, the color of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is really peculiar. But this color is not my taste, which is why I sold the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II after a series of reviews. However, I listed the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II 'legendary cameras'.

If you are still in doubt whether to look for the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II in the secondary market, then definitely the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II deserves close attention to itself. It is much more interesting to work with it than with cameras of the 5D and 6D series. I really love old DSLRs and the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II gives you a lot of emotion that you can't get from my other favorite cameras like Canon EOS 5D, Kodak Professional DCS PRO 14n, Fujifilm FinePix S5 Pro, Fujifilm FinePix S3 Pro и Nikon D40.

First of all, the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is interesting as a creative tool when shooting at low ISOs. The Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is cheap, reliable and unique full frame.

Comments on this post do not require registration. Anyone can leave a comment. Many different photographic equipment can be found on AliExpress.


Material prepared Arkady Shapoval... Look for me on Youtube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Telegram.

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Comments: 16, on the topic: Brief review of the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II

  • Alexander

    Hmm ..., very interesting Arkady, what is more interesting with this camera than with 5 or 6 d ?, or what emotions arise when using this camera, and which are not with s5pro?)
    I am very interested in your subjective opinion, including emotions, because in many ways they are in harmony with me and similar to mine.
    I had such a camera, not for long .., but ..., on the impressions of using it now, after a while, I bought myself a 1Dmiii ..., for sports to try in principle, but I really wanted to hold this agrigative in my hands again! ..., the impressions are very pleasant ..., it’s even a pity to sell ..., for the sake of tactile sensations and the sound of the shutter, I leave it to myself)
    Thanks to your reviews, I also took Nikon D40 ..., I don’t regret it at all, I’m satisfied and I also leave this baby with me!
    Recently, I’ve been thinking more and more about ghee ...., I immediately read your feelings .., from many cameras .., so I decided to ask about your emotions and feelings in the context of using beautiful cameras .., both full-frame and small Nikon))
    Thank you for your reply)

    • Alexander

      ... will s5pro surprise me with something? ..., or will it impress me more than those cameras that were and are already impressed? (sonya99, sonya6300)
      Just your opinion, as a lover of beautiful photos and harmonious colors.

      • Arkady Shapoval

        The difference from the other mentioned legendary cameras in this one is, first of all, due to its combo body, unusual controls, pleasant JVI, general pleasant work - from the shutter to some small nuances.

        Her color, if we take the original, without modifications, I would describe as strict, serious, “rich”, filmy. I don’t like this one, I like light, “transparent”, festive. Everything about this one is too pathetic and contrasting. This is the main reason why I didn't keep the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II. But many people like this one and it is considered “correct”, “canonical”

  • Alexander

    An excellent device for those who understand real professional equipment that works even in heavy rain. The color is great, and the small screen is nothing compared to the great ergonomics of the units. The low ISO is not a big disadvantage compared to the ease of use of this machine.

    • Joe

      Even the performance of the Leica Q2 (IP52 rating) or the new OM-1 (IP53 rating) is not guaranteed in heavy rain, let alone any Canon camera with interchangeable lenses. We look at the operating conditions in the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II manual, and we see that the operating humidity is 85% or less.
      In terms of ease of use, the Canon EOS-1 Ds Mark II is in some respects inferior to modern cameras, even inexpensive ones, even incomplete ones.
      For example, there is no LiveView, but in some cases it is needed. There is no built-in vignetting and distortion correction, and to get ready-made jpg from the camera, this would be very useful, because the color in jpg from this camera, in my opinion, is very good. Some parameters of the camera operation are configured only via FireWire from a personal computer. There is no WiFi, you want to take a self-portrait, or in some other situation you need wireless control of all shooting settings - you won’t be able to control the camera through a smartphone, nor will it be possible to copy some frames on the same smartphone using the tools built into the camera in the field. In terms of dimensions, it will not fit in the first bag that comes across, if you do not remove the lens. When the camera is turned off, there is no function to retract the “trunk” of the lens to ensure its safety. On a very small screen, it is difficult to assess the quality of pictures (especially focus), although there is a useful feature for showing overexposed areas of the frame. The shutter is loud, attracts a lot of attention. The charger is large - if you carry it with you, it takes up a lot of space.
      Of the real pluses, it is in terms of ease of use - a really good case, it's nice to hold it in your hands; the camera is heavy - it balances heavy lenses, although for some the weight may seem excessive; the controls are designed so that accidental changes in shooting parameters and camera settings are unlikely. The viewfinder is good. The complete charger allows you to connect 2 batteries at once, however, they are charged in turn, as far as I remember. On one battery charge in warm conditions, you can take a lot of shots, I did not check it in winter.
      But in general, it is for the sake of convenience that it makes sense to choose more modern cameras, even if they are lower and cheaper.

  • Pawel

    Strange comrade, you can’t demand modern chips from a camera made in 2004. Now people need it for thoughtful creative shooting in good weather. Who needs light weight, small size, fast performance, small charge, live view, video, peaking, WiFi, coffee maker, etc. will take the appropriate device. And this is a thing in itself, I bought D1X a little older than this. Someone doesn't understand why. But this is a challenge to itself. Will I be able, as Arkady said, to prove that the main thing is not the technique, but the photographer? That's what these old men are used for. And for reporting Z5 for the eyes. No complaints, just hooked claims to the camera. Then the full frame was already the height of achievements, the rest was a body kit of the sensor IMHO ...

  • Viktor

    I had a lot of canon cameras, but ds2 is my favorite. they can get the same picture with their modern camera. For reporting, I take 1dM4, the camera is smart, but the picture is more digital. Someone doesn’t see any difference at all, people are happy, but I see. I can honestly talk about this. I also solved the problem with the battery a long time ago, now a small charge and a light lithium battery for 3000 frames, I just enjoy shooting and I urge everyone to do it. It doesn’t matter what kind of camera a person has, if he understands how to do it and what to do.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Thank you

    • Dmitry Kostin

      “I also solved the problem with the battery a long time ago, now a small charge and a light lithium battery for 3000 frames”
      Discover the secret.
      I tried both native and several Chinese ones. More than 800-1000 frames did not work on one charge.

      • Viktor

        When I have time, I’ll take a picture and write in more detail. Someone will say that it’s a collective farm, but it suits me. Now there’s a lot of work and I can’t ...

  • Mr. boggy

    And after playing around with the first 1Ds, I’ll say this: The second D-ska is good because it’s predictable and better equipped, more full-frame resolution, the speed is already 5 fps, Iso works quite well. But in one thing to reproach the audacity, (in no case in spite of the owners of this miracle of technology, but this is a real miracle in that era and in the used market it is a pearl.) It is somewhat USUAL, compared to the first, there is none Wow effect when you have time to shoot the First 1Ds and Pyatak. Well, the camera, a good camera, clear and even pictures, the color is very pleasant. But again, this color reminds me very much of Pyatak, but with large channel depths, excellent RGB balance and, correctly, working with white balance. For some reason, after the first DS-ki and Pyatak, the color of the Mk2 does not impress me. The emphasis of brown and yellow is noticeable - the color of the greens does not come out emerald green, and the greens are slightly dirty, all images accentuate these shades a little. (I checked hundreds of samples online). These are the nuances of the work of Dizhik the Second, Pyatak and my 400d give out similar shades when shooting outdoors. For some reason, the colors of the First I like more, the Second has NORMAL. Beautiful, technically almost flawless, but for some reason not catchy.

    • Dmitry Kostin

      “Second has NORMAL. Beautiful, technically almost flawless, but for some reason they don’t catch on.”
      I'm interested in your opinion about 1Ds_mk3.
      The 1Ds_mk2 seemed so “NORMAL” to me that I bought a box set from Japan with almost zero camera mileage in addition to that 1Ds_mk2.
      One pain - batteries (availability and price). In addition, they are heavier than for 1Ds_mk3 and even the new Chinese ones hold much worse.

      • Dmitry Kostin

        …in addition to that 1Ds_mk2.
        that I already had with a range of 60 thousand frames.

  • Mr. boggy

    You know, there was a whole worship on the topic of 5D Mk2 on the network, from 2008 until the very release of Mk3, and then everyone forgot, except for the secondary market, and then they began to spit, they say, noise and all that. And if you look at all these cameras, then it is a number and a number, no matter how you turn it. Wanted 1 Ds MK3? Even more polished, synthetic commercial picture, with even more saturated colors thanks to the 3rd Dizhik, already a typical Kenon-Boot. There is one problem here, on the used market for them, already ancient as mammoth shit, they require an overdose of money, including their second, and not their first owners, given the often shabby shutters and dead batteries.

  • Mr. boggy

    I’m not just writing about the camera from a critical position, I almost would have bought it a few years ago, but her picture just stopped me. The sharpness and focus here are super, but the drawing of the matrix itself is somehow not mine at all. Perhaps it's already a different 17 megapixel matrix, and not 11, as in my 1Ds, and, accordingly, new moiré filters, aliasing, strapping and the new Digik2 processor? penny, (“ah, I already saw this”) - just deja vu arose. The color of the second one is good, but the saturation of the palette is noticeable, especially in blue shades, again I saw this in 5D MK2, but this one has a difference in that there is a feeling of prettiness and green objects such as foliage and grass are a little “dirty.” That is, the greens are similar to the picture already from the first Pyatak, but the truth is a little better.For me, the best color is in the first unit, and by the way, pink in less (but in the shade the infection gives off lilac, not ideal), but the greenery in the landscapes is something ... And it sucks that the range is narrow, and the noise with ISO 400 is already strained ... But if only this color was in MK2 or MK3 ...

    • Igor

      The first nickel has a green one, it just doesn’t dream, it’s bright, clean, all the dirt went from the second one!

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