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-   -   Canon 350D – are you serious? (

KSV Mar 14, 2005 12:07 AM

Honestly, do not intend to start any kind of war here – just like to know Canon's fans opinion. Opinion on 350D with witch I have a chance to play a little yesterday.

I believe that photography (including digital) has nothing to do with (semi)automatically produced color images. It is something else. It would be difficult to define that in one word, but closest one is probably "passion". To be able to product photos (I mean photos, not just color pictures) one has to be in love with photography. And ability to produce real stuff has nothing to do with equipment used – everything is about passion. This statement is very easy to prove – any of us seen beautiful photos made on quite ordinary equipment and any of us seen crappie color pictures made on state-of-the art equipment – unfortunately later in vast majority.

So question is very simple – how you (Canon's fan) can be in love with this plastic box? Yes, it is somewhat a bit better technically than its competitors. But how important is that? How important is 8mp v 6mp? How important is 0.2 sec start-up time v 0.4? But if one really value those differences (s)he has to live with cheap-feeling plastic box. It bit of big for its weight and feels like empty. You can see cut corners everyware – pentamirror instead of pentaprism causing smallish and not so bright viewfinder, quite doggy small low resolution LCD, information LCD on the back – not on the top, kit lens fully plastic (mount for sure, probably some "glass" as well) etc. In short everything what cost real money to produce has been cut to the bones, but camera fully loaded with close-to-zero cost microelectronic stuff included such things as WB bracketing (who need it in real word?). Canon's move is very understandable – they like to improve their position of volume leader of entry level DSLR market, so they produce camera witch is "better" then competitors. Question is who will value such "perfection"? My answer is very simple – sales people who know nothing except of megapixels in their bid to convince a housekeeper (who understand nothing except of megapixel) to buy particular equipment! And of course such "improvements" are invaluable for "Equipment Measurbators" (more here But how one who in-love with photography can be in-love with this camera? Beyond of my imagination. Saying that I do not mean that camera is a bad camera – not at all - and anyone who in love with photography may produce excellent result with it. IMHO it just need to positioned as "below entry" level DSLR and price should be around $500 – an excellent choice for a housekeeper who like to look as a "pro".

Canon is really shines in marketing department (not like Nikon - forget at all about Pentax), no doubt about that, but my question is how you (Canon fans) happy about that? Do you really happy to trade-off invaluable things like bright pentaprism viewfinder and spot-metering to WB bracketing and 14 JPG images in burst mode?

I would like to apologies in advance for:
  1. Long message [/*]
  2. Not-so-perfect language (I am not native English)[/*]
  3. Hurting someone who really in love with this camera.[/*]

PeterP Mar 14, 2005 12:19 AM

Apologies, I do notunderstand the point of your post, or the rant about Canon marketing. Especially since you are a pentax *ist dsshooter. Or at least all your image posts were taken with one.


KSV Mar 14, 2005 12:35 AM

I am a Pentax user. Also I love very much some Canon equipment - 20D for example - just too expensive for me and too late to change boat. Question about 350D is quite simple - what Canon's fan are thinking about the fact (IMHO only)that their beloved brand made their mainstream model aimed on housekeepers and "Equipment Measurbators" rather then on photographers?

Kenny_Leong Mar 14, 2005 1:15 AM

I just reckon that there's a market for that camera. The price is affordable for some folks, and it can take quite good quality photos, and it works pretty well. And it has some appealing preview specs.

PhotoEcosse Mar 14, 2005 3:03 AM


It is a reflection of development and innovation. Without these we would be driving around in Model T Fords and listening to wind up Gramaphones (thankfully I have to do neither).

As I see it, Canon have listened to their customers and reviewers and have improved the 300D where it was perceived to have some shortcomings. Put yourself in their shoes; the DSLR market is highly competitive especially at the consumer / entry level. Each manufacturer is trying to leap frog the others with a better product to capture market share. It may not be the 20D but it does seem to be step on from the 300D. If you have a problem withthe plastic body etc of the 350D then follow your own advice and move onto the 20D.

However, for photographers on a budget who want to get into DSLR then the 350D seems to offer a fair trade off between features, functionand cost. In December look back and see which camera outsold every other DSLR in 2005. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the 350D :-)

PeterP Mar 14, 2005 1:55 PM

AhOK, I think I see your point.

I think maybe the other posters have it right, Canon(and any other big company) is after profit, they analyze their target market and then keep producing slightly better equipment to try to get first time buyers to commit while at the same time get existing users to think about upgrading. I think cameras are now the same as PC's, constant upgrades until you say enough is enough and decide to stick with what you have.

Which IMHO: for most people is already more than they really need, if they simply sit down and take the time to learn to really use what they have.


JohnG Mar 14, 2005 2:28 PM

I have to honestly say I think your question is pointless. It's like stating: "how can a true driving enthusiast be happy with a Volkswagen - it doesn't have the same things as a Porsche 911. Of course the 350D has some cost-cutting. If it had everything a 20D did it would cost the same. The camera is just a tool and I find it perfectly legitimate for a person to be extremely happy with a tool that meets their needs. Your statements seem to indicate that if a person truly loved photography they wouldn't be happy with the shortfalls of this camera. I don't find that to be a legitimate statement. Everyone's needs and desires in their photography tools are different. For some, the limitations of the 350 are not acceptable so they save up and buy a better model. For others, a point-and-shoot camera is acceptable or all they can afford. That doesn't mean they don't understand or appreciate photography. I respect those individuals that do a true cost-benefit analysis of various models and determine for themselves which is the right tool for them.

I'm not sure if you're saying the 350d should have offered more than it does? If so, then again you would have the 20D. As for offering it at $500 and calling it a sub-entry DSLR - why would they? If the market will bear the price of $800 and it is a legitimate competitor to other manufacturer's entry level products what is their incentive for doing so?

Kenny_Leong Mar 14, 2005 3:33 PM

"To be able to product photos (I mean photos, not just color pictures) one has to be in love with photography."

But the thing is .... a photo is an image captured using a camera. And whether the image is appealing/interesting or not is in the eye of whoever is looking at it. Otherwise the image is 'just' a (colour/bw) picture.

Here's another point. If assuming we are in love with photography, and supposing that we agree with your point, but we cannot afford a camera that has all the bells and whistles....then does that mean we'd never get a chance to take any photos? (because we can't afford one that has all the features you desire).

KSV Mar 14, 2005 6:04 PM

PhotoEcosse wrote:

However, for photographers on a budget who want to get into DSLR then the 350D seems to offer a fair trade off between features, functionand cost. In December look back and see which camera outsold every other DSLR in 2005. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the 350D :-)
Have no doubt about that at all. And this is exactly where is my frustration came from. Rather then make equipment like 20D affordable for everyone, manufactures (and this is related not only for Canon and in general not only for photography) happily supply dump public (witch understand nothing except of megapixel count) with cheaply executed equipment fully stuffed with (IMHO) unnecessarily and overcomplicated gizmos. And people who in real love with photography never can afford desired equipment – it is incredibly difficult walk against crowd.:(

BillDrew Mar 14, 2005 9:40 PM

KVS, you should take a look at the price of some very simple photo equipment like a lens and shutter for a view camera. No electronics - no zoom, nothing but glass, iris, a mechanical shutter and some bits of metal to hold the whole thing together. Something like a wide-angle 210mm lens for only $US 3,148.95

Good equipment ain't cheap.

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