The Canon EOS Rebel has gone digital. Adding to the world’s most popular line of autofocus SLR cameras, the new EOS Digital Rebel combines the quality, affordability and ease of use the Rebel is renowned for with the immediacy, vitality and economy that digital delivers. Sleek and stylish – with a high-grade titanium gray metallic finish – the Digital Rebel puts the power and flexibility of a single lens reflex camera into a compact, light weight, high performance, high resolution 6.3 megapixel package.
“With this Digital Rebel we have added ‘affordable’ to the lexicon of digital SLRs,” said Yukiaki Hashimoto, senior vice president and general manager of the Consumer Imaging Group at Canon U.S.A., Inc., a subsidiary of Canon Inc. “By leveraging the design, engineering and manufacturing expertise gained developing EOS pro-digital SLRs, Canon is able to bring the Digital Rebel SLR to consumers at a price point once reserved for digital point and shoots. As we have with other benchmark products such as the AE-1, Sure Shot, Rebel and ELPH, we expect to dominate an entirely new market category. For price, power and performance, this is one Canon that will blow the market away.”
Price and Availability
The EOS Digital Rebel will be offered in two kit configurations: with or without the EF 18-55mm f/3.5 – 5.6 zoom lens. Initial shipments of each kit will begin in mid-September. The estimated selling price for the zoom lens kit which includes a battery pack and charger, plus software, manuals, interface cables, neckstrap and Canon USA limited warranty will be $999(a). The estimated selling price for the body-only kit with the same accessories and limited warranty will be $899(a).
Image Excellence and the DIGIC(TM) Difference
From the optical excellence of Canon’s extensive line of EF lenses to the large format 6.3 megapixel CMOS sensor (with its 22.7 x 15.1mm image format and 3:2 aspect ratio), the Digital Rebel captures brilliant images and then – thanks to Canon’s exclusive DIGIC(TM) (Digital Imaging Integrated Circuit) Imaging Processor – takes image quality to a new level.
Canon developed the proprietary DIGIC image processing technology specifically for use with its line of digital cameras. DIGIC technology combines the roles of image processing and camera function control into one chip and because it was designed for use in digital cameras, it is also capable of handling JPEG compression/expansion; memory card control; LCD/Video control and processing; gain control (control of CCD signal amplification); Auto Exposure; Auto Focus; Auto White Balance control and most other functions of a digital camera. The DIGIC Processor offers the added benefit of faster display and write-times for each image and low power consumption, saving valuable battery power.
Among the EOS Digital Rebel’s most exciting attributes is its high quality autofocus technology, designed to enable users to capture decisive moments with accuracy and speed. Utilizing the same 7-point AF sensor found on the top-rated EOS 10D model, the Digital Rebel is capable of analyzing where a subject is – even when it is off-center – and immediately bring it into focus. It can also analyze subject movement and automatically select locking or tracking AF modes as appropriate. These features serve to simplify the camera’s operation while maximizing its performance. For even greater creative control, the Digital Rebel offers users the choice of automatic and manual focusing point selection.
The Digital Rebel’s shutter speeds range from 1/ 4,000 of a second to 30 seconds plus Bulb, while a built-in motor drive enables the camera to capture 2.5 frames per second in continuous shooting mode for bursts of up to four shots. There are 12 shooting modes including ProgramAE, Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Auto Depth-of-Field AE and Manual as well as Full Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Close-up, Action, Night Scene and Flash Off.
Canon’s exclusive 35-zone Evaluative metering links to the active focusing point and is the default metering pattern in AE modes, while center-weighted average metering is automatically selected in Manual mode. Central-area partial metering (measuring 9.5% of the picture area) is available on demand in Program AE, Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Auto Depth-of-Field AE and Manual.
Advanced Ergonomics for Single Handed Operation
Ergonomically designed with the look and feel of its time tested Rebel relatives, the Digital Rebel’s main controls including the mode dial, input dial and shutter button are located on the right side of the body for convenient one-handed operation. Despite its abundance of advanced features, the Digital Rebel is the smallest and lightest member of the EOS Digital SLR series, measuring only 5.6″ (W), 3.9 “(H) and 2.9” (D) and weighing in at a mere 19.7 oz.
Adding to its ease of use, new cross key controls (a first for the EOS digital line) are located right beside the Digital Rebel’s 1.8 inch color LCD monitor, enabling easier navigation of the camera’s menu items. When reviewing images, users can also zoom from 1.5x to 10x magnification with 15 levels of adjustment and scroll left, right, up and down using the cross keys. The Digital Rebel swings back into shooting mode at the touch of the shutter button, ensuring that the next great shot is not missed while the last great shot is being reviewed or even direct printed.
The Digital Rebel’s mode dial is divided into Basic and Creative Zone modes. Click on Basic and the Rebel sets the ISO speed automatically and offers users the choice of portrait, landscape, close-up, sports, night portrait, flash off as well as full auto modes. Enter the Creative Zone and users can select ISO speeds from 100 -1600 as well as from five shooting modes: Program AE, Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Automatic Depth of Field AE and Manual. The Flash Off mode disables the built-in flash as well as any attached Speedlite.
Image quality can be controlled in any exposure mode by selecting from 6 JPEG settings with varying degrees of resolution and compression. Users shooting in Creative Zone modes can also record high-resolution RAW files with the added advantage of simultaneous mid-fine JPEG capture. The smaller file size of the mid-fine JPEG is ideal for e-mailing and computer viewing while the RAW format preserves maximum control over image processing parameters with the provided File Viewer Utility software.
The camera’s Auto White Balance (AWB) incorporates eight preset white balance modes plus a custom white balance setting that allows fast, easy and accurate adjustments in virtually any lighting condition. The Digital Rebel also features white balance bracketing which captures three images (normal, reddish and bluish) with one click of the shutter.
In a Flash
The EOS Digital Rebel is compatible with more than 50 Canon EF lenses, high quality EOS specific accessories and Canon’s EX-series Speedlites, making the transition to high quality digital even more affordable for film based Rebel and EOS users. The camera’s high profile, built-in retractable flash unit makes taking pictures with well-balanced foreground and background exposures a snap thanks to Canon’s exclusive E-TTL (Evaluative Through-The-Lens) flash exposure metering system. The Digital Rebel also supports such advanced features as E-TTL Wireless Autoflash; Flash Exposure Compensation; Flash Exposure Lock, and FP Flash (high-speed sync).
Canon EF Lenses: The Short and Long of It
Canon’s new compact EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5 -5.6 zoom lens – created exclusively for the Digital Rebel(b) and available only in the Digital Rebel Kit – approximates a 28-90mm zoom lens (in 35mm format). By reducing the distance from the rear of the lens to the imaging sensor and reducing the size of the image circle to accommodate the camera’s imaging sensor size, the lens produces high image quality with superb resolution at all focal lengths. The new lens is also smaller and lighter than conventional lenses because of the shorter backfocus distance.
Similarly, the newly developed Canon Zoom Lens EF 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6 II USM covers a 35mm equivalent zoom range of approximately 90 – 320mm when used with the Digital Rebel. Together, these two lenses provide 35mm-equivalent zoom coverage from 28mm to 320mm.
Photo Printing Plus
When it comes to perfectly processing and printing the pictures it captures, the EOS Digital Rebel offers a direct print option as well as a broad selection of in-camera processing parameters for contrast, sharpness, color saturation and color tone. The camera’s default parameters enhance sharpness, saturation and contrast for high-quality direct printing with no additional image manipulation needed. An optional setting – available only in Creative Zone shooting modes – applies standard processing parameters for greater creative latitude during post-processing in the user’s personal computer. Digital Rebel users can also create and store up to three sets of custom parameters (contrast, sharpness, color saturation and color tone) and can opt for standard RGB color space or Adobe RGB color space in Creative Zone modes.
Direct Printing significantly expands the appeal of the EOS Digital Rebel by making it simple, quick and convenient to produce high-quality photos without the need for a personal computer. Beyond its Direct Print capability with Canon’s Card Photo Printers and acclaimed Bubble Jet Direct Photo Printers, the Digital Rebel is also compatible with PictBridge,(c) a new industry protocol that offers the flexibility of direct printing to other brands of PictBridge compatible printers. Features such as image cropping, date imprinting, paper selection and printing quantities can be controlled directly from the camera’s LCD monitor.
The EOS Digital Rebel supports Exif Print 2.2, a worldwide standard that transfers important camera settings and data from a camera to the printer ensuring the photos you print will look true to life. Moreover, DPOF1.1 (Digital Print Order Format) lets users specify the images to be printed or execute batch printing of selected images.
The Digital Rebel also utilizes Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP) to easily connect (via USB interface cable) to Windows(R) XP and Mac(R) OS X (v10.1/v10.2) operating systems without installing any dedicated driver software. The Digital Rebel accepts either CompactFlash(R) type I or type II cards, and is also compatible with Microdrive(R) media cards for larger data storage.
Designed exclusively for EOS Digital Rebel, the new Battery Grip BG-E1 expands shooting capacity to up to 1,200 images (thanks to the two battery packs it holds) and adds an auxiliary set of camera controls (shutter release button, main dial, AF/FE lock button, AF point selection button, Av +/- button) for easier operation while shooting portraits and other vertical format applications.
New EF Extension Tubes
For close-up work, Canon’s new Extension Tubes EF 12 II and EF 25 II work with many EF lenses including the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6. The tubes’ lens mount has been redesigned to accommodate EF lenses as well as the new EF-S lens that utilizes Short Back Focal Distance Optics. With the extension tube attached between camera body and EF lens, users can easily shoot magnified close-up photos.