EOS R Experience

November 4, 2018 georgebarr 1 comment

It’s been a couple of weeks and you might be wondering about buyers regret. Of course, what happens more often is that we try to justify in writing why we made this dubious decision, but I’ll do my best to provide useful information.


Is this a great landscape camera – absolutely! For on-tripod work, it is near perfect, perhaps losing a few points for not having the highest pixel count and that you have to press the depth of field preview just like the old days – not a huge hardship for the greater ease of not having to focus at f11.


What about focus stacking? Well, with autofocus almost everywhere, it’s easy to use touch focus to work your way into a scene in reasonable steps, or use manual focus with magnification as you choose.  Better than trying to turn the lens a consistent amount between exposures as I’ve always had to do. Perhaps not as good as automated stacking like in the Nikon 850 and Z7 and Olympus e-md1 mark 2, but without the hassle of shooting 12 shots where only three were needed.


Love having a tilting screen that works for vertical shots – everyone talks of blogging – but what about those of us who use a tripod and want a vertical composition?


Hand holding without IBIS – well, my lenses so far are the 100-400 IS, 70-200 IS, 85 f1.4 IS, and a 24-70 IS. I’ll add a 16-35 at some point. I don’t need Ibis with this range of IS lenses.


But what about when I’m hand holding and that missing joystick? Well, as a few people wrote, it’s actually not difficult to use a finger to move the focus point. I’m left eyed so I use my left index finger to move the focus point on the left side activated screen. One problem though is when I turn the camera vertical – my large nose touches the lcd and the focus point moves to the bottom right corner. I’ve started to use my right eye – after all I don’t need to focus, just frame the picture, and I can do that with the ‘wrong’ eye.


I complained in the last note that noise and banding were just as bad as Tony Northrup mentioned – which is to say if I follow his steps, I get the same noise he sees. But what he did was to move the exposure slider to the far right – five stops. I have never ever done that in Lightroom. If I use the shadow recovery slider to the far right, then go into photoshop and open the shadows a bit more with some custom curves or even the shadows/highlights via image/adjustment/shadows..highlights I don’t see noise – that’s to say if  I only open shadows to the maximum I have ever opened shadows, I don’t have a problem. I’m ok with this.


What about eye autofocus – basically it works if you are doing a head to belt single portrait or closer, with the person facing you (not sideways) it works quite well. My 85 wide open at 1.4 focuses better than anything I’ve used before. Back off a bit or turn the subject away a little or complicate things with glasses, or heaven forbid add a second subject, then all bets are off. Not Ready For Prime Time. I’m guessing it will be improved with an update but likely will never in this camera equal Sony.


In truth, I’ve used this camera more often in the two weeks I’ve owned it than any previous camera in the last 10 years – because I’m having fun. Yesterday I slapped a short extension tube onto the 85 and photographed in the garden. I mounted the 100-400 and shot the squirrels in the trees, and took the camera to a meeting and photographed my friends. I was very happy with the results, and have no doubt that with more practice with the camera, my keeper rate will go up.


On the issue of image backup and two card slots – most of my digital career I only ever had or used one slot but either it’s a deal breaker for you or it isn’t. If I shot weddings, it would be a deal breaker though people have already developed wi-fi workarounds.


When I bought the camera, my  biggest concern was how long it would take Canon to catch up sensor quality wise, though what I’ve heard since is more reassuring – a goodly selection of lenses in the next year, and probably IBIS and a high res camera.


I’m pleased to say that my think tank streetwalker pro bag that I liked so much for my Olympus equipment now takes the Canon gear just fine, with enough space left for adding a wide end zoom. Yes, the bag is about 3 pounds heavier and by the time I’m finished perhaps one or two more – but I can live with that. I’m really enjoying the dreamy out of focus with the 85 1.4 IS wide open. Everyone is raving about the 50 mm. 1.2 but it’s 200 gm. heavier than the 85, doesn’t have IS and has similar depth of field. I don’t think I need more than one fast lens. I’ll probably get the 16-35. the f4 IS is a tad weak at 35 but otherwise seems (in my reading and searching) to be the equal once stopped down to f8. One option would be to forego anything between 70 and 35, get the 35 f2 IS, and use the 16-35 only between 16 and 28. I’ waiting on reviews of the rf 35 1.8 IS before deciding how to act.

1 Comment on “EOS R Experience

  1. ” …well, my lenses so far are the 100-400 IS, 70-200 IS, 85 f1.4 IS, and a 24-70 IS. I’ll add a 16-35 at some point.”

    The Canon EOS R body plus those lenses costs $10,000 at BHPhoto.

    My latest Pentax: K-70, 24Mpixel APS-C, with IBIS, fully-articulated LCD, etc. cost $600, and comports beautifully with the ‘limited’ prime lenses I have had since 2007.


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