Major update of Canon EOS-D60 review! - HUGE sample gallery! (UPDATED)|
(Monday, March 25, 2002 - 00:00 EST)
Dave takes a look at a production-level sample of Canon's EOS D60 digital SLR, and Mike T. offers up no less than 50 sample images taken with the same camera...
We've had our hands on a D60 production model for the last couple of weeks, but Canon asked us to hold off posting any pictures from it until tonight (this is being posted at 11pm EST) as a courtesy to the other review sites. (You'll find that Phil, Steve, and Jeff have all posted review updates of their own more or less simultaneously with ours.)
Back when I reviewed a prototype D60 just prior to PMA (Feb 22), I was very impressed with what I saw, but refrained from any detailed conclusions about image quality until I could get a look at images from a full production model. I've now done that, and it's safe to say that I'm pretty impressed with what I saw: The D60 now holds the crown as the highest-resolution camera I've yet tested.
But resolution alone is only part of the story: Images from the D60 also show very low noise, excellent color, and excellent tonality and dynamic range. In short, the camera produces images that are superb across the board. Most of the minor differences I saw between the D60 and the earlier D30 were already noted in my earlier first-look review. One key difference only became apparent when I put the camera through the wringer of my standard test suite: The D60 shows remarkably low noise in low-light bulb exposures! Canon has pushed their "active pixel" CMOS technology to another level in the D60, implementing an entirely new noise-reduction algorithm for long exposures. The D60 apparently needs no "dark frame" shot to cancel-out sensor noise in long exposures, as do most other cameras I've tested. Instead, it somehow compensates for and removes sensor noise during the exposure itself. (!) This has the benefit of allowing much faster cycling between shots when using the bulb exposure mode, but the real benefit is the amazingly low noise levels the D60 shows even on very long bulb exposures. - Significantly lower noise than did the D30, despite smaller pixels.
The updated review contains a full suite of my standardized test shots, so you can make true apples-to-apples comparisons between the D60 and other cameras you may be considering. I've recently begun shooting a range of non-standard images with key cameras as well though, in response to several reader requests for examples of what the cameras can do in more "normal" shooting conditions. With the D60, news editor Mike Tomkins pitched in, with the result that we have a gallery of no fewer than 50 (!) beautiful shots taken with the D60 under a *wide* range of conditions, from nighttime to bright sun, with dim interior shots in between. ISOs from 100 to 1000, and shutter speeds out to 24 seconds. (Thanks, Mike!) Definitely check out the D60 Samples Gallery! - And read the Test Shots page for all my standard shots with analysis. The review itself has been updated as well, to incorporate all my new findings.
What a camera! - If you want to get one sooner rather than later, you might consider pre-ordering one from our premier retail partner Ritzcamera.com. These cameras are going to be hot, so it could take a while to get your hands on one. Take advantage of Ritz' huge buying power to get yours ahead of the crowd. - And you can count on Ritz to process preorders reliably and honestly. Oh - and your orders help support this site, we get a small commission for purchases through our links. Here's the link to preorder, or here's a FAQ page I put together explaining the process.
UPDATED 2002-03-25 14:00ET: Finished reading our review and browsing the samples gallery? If so, you'll want to check out the Digital Photography Review website for another production-level review accompanied by 29 sample images, and the Digital Camera Resource Page for another 48 sample images in two galleries (1, 2). Jeff at DCResource notes that he'll have an updated review in a couple of weeks, and our friends at Steve's Digicams meanwhile will have production level images on Wednesday or Thursday of this week...