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Foreword: About your camera and this book

Foreword: About your camera and this book

Photographic enthusiasts have been waiting a long time for the Canon EOS 40D. Now it's here. The is camera offers a rich set of professional-level features at an amateur price, and shows that nowadays, you can get more photographic power for your money than ever before.

Although the Canon EOS 40D has been primarily designed from the ground up, many of the components from the top-of-the-line EOS 1Ds Mark III have been built into the camera. One of the most important changes is the, high-resolution 3-inch 230,000-pixel LCD monitor, which can also be used for viewing a Live View of the actual image captured by the camera's sensor. This mode is most useful when taking macro shots from a tripod, but you can also use autofocus in Live View mode (by pressing the AF-ON button), which, together with the grid display makes overhead photography a breeze.

The camera's 10.1 megapixel Complementary Metal-Oxide Semi-conductor (CMOS) image sensor delivers excellent image quality; the resolution is very good, there is very little noise, and general interference is reduced to a minimum. You can use Picture Styles to individually adjust sharpness, contrast, saturation, and color tone, and the "Adjust levels" option is a great aid when you are shooting high-contrast subjects. The four metering modes (evaluative, center-weighted, partial and spot) allow you to easily master every exposure situation. Additionally, the camera's white balance capabilities and exposure modes will satisfy even the most demanding photographer.

These cutaway drawings show just how much sophisticated electronic circuitry is packed into the camera's body. Photos: Canon



The EOS 40D's new autofocus module uses eight AF sensors grouped in a diamond pattern around a powerful central sensor. All nine sensors are cross sensors, which can focus sharply on any type of texture, regardless of their orientation to the subject. The shortest shutter speed of 1/8000sec and the 6.5fps (frames per second) maximum shooting speed (at maximum resolution) are also professional-level features. The camera's memory buffer is big enough to capture 75 JPEG or 17 RAW images in a single burst, and startup time and shutter delay are both only milliseconds long. In short, if you miss a shot using the EOS 40D, you are going to need a good excuse, as it is very unlikely that it will be the camera's fault!

The camera's medium-sized body is solidly built, easy to grip, and sits well in your hand. The controls are clearly labeled and are generally positioned where you would expect to find them, and the camera's 24 custom functions with their 62 individual options allow you to configure the camera exactly to your own personal needs. Another practical feature adopted from professional cameras is the interchangeable focusing screens: the grid screen, for example, offers distinct advantages when it comes to orienting the camera and composing your shot. The pentaprism viewfinder gives a clear, bright image, and the viewfinder displays provide a comprehensive overview of all exposure-relevant information. A built-in cleaning system automatically removes dust and dirt from the low-pass filter.

If you want to use your EOS 40D skillfully and on a regular basis, you will find this book to be a valuable guide which will introduce you to many of the secrets of challenging high-end photography. Theory and technical tips are always presented in the context of their practical usage, and the book is clearly and systematically structured to help you orient yourself easily whatever your level of expertise. Boxes with Tips & Tricks and Photo Basics emphasize the instructional nature of the book, and serve up easily digested "infobites" rather than the all-too-familiar "information overkill" found in other books.



Photography how-to books often go to great lengths to explain to the photographer how to deskew a crooked image, instead of making it clear that it is much better (and easier) to orient the camera correctly in the first place. In spite of the many articles that follow the "I can sort that out later in Photoshop" principle, good shooting technique is still the cornerstone of high-quality images in the course of a digital photographer's daily life. You can always make better prints from a sharp, well-exposed, and well-composed image than from one which has been extensively processed after shooting. This is the starting point for this book, in which I hope to strike a healthy balance between the use of ultra-modern technology, shooting technique, and image processing. Due to the large number of image processing programs available and the prominent treatment given them by the media, the emphasis here will be on camera technology and shooting skills, without losing sight of the importance of the whole image enhancement process.

Dr. Artur Landt

The camera's purposeful design underlines its technical prowess. Photos: Canon



The EOS 40D is as robust and well-equipped as many truly professional cameras. Photos: Canon



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