Overall, the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL is an ideal entry-level digital SLR camera for beginners wanting dip their hands into the world of digital SLR photography without paying an arm and a leg. The seven Basic zone shooting modes (Full Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Close-up, Sports, Night Portrait, Flash Off) readily cater to the beginners and amateurs just starting on their quest in SLR-type shooting. Once familiar with the functions, they can move on to the more advanced Creative zone shooting modes (Program AE, Shutter Priority AE, Aperture Priority AE, Manual, and A-DEP).
The stepping stone into digital SLR photography?
The Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL comes with many features also available to the Canon EOS 10D DIGITAL such as the three types of metering (Evaluative, Center-weighted, Partial) and focusing (One-shot, AI Servo, AI Focus) modes. However, though available, usage of these modes are restrained and pre-determined with each of the camera’s shooting modes, allowing very little flexibility and choice on the user end. Photographers keen on natural light photography may also find the AF-beam feature of the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL limiting should they need to achieve a focus in low light conditions and yet not have the flash fire as well. Speaking of which, we found flash shots taken with the camera to be somewhat underexposed. Flash compensation, a feature that is now readily available to consumer digital cameras in the market, is surprisingly not provided for the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL’s in-built flash. We lament the lack of justice Auto WB does under Tungsten lighting as well as the poor combination placement of the optical viewfinder and the LCD screen that was unforgiving to many a nose smudge. Surprisingly, the start up time of the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL was slow at 3-4 seconds. A fast start up time is especially crucial for SLR users who generally shoot in more trying and unpredictable conditions where timing is what makes or breaks a shot.
While some may find issue with the extensive use of plastic on the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL’s body, construction of the body is sturdy and impresses on us the ability to withstand the occasional knocks and bumps. Though the buttons do not offer the audible click upon depression, they are well damped and fit well into the body, as with the rest of the controls. Canon gives us plenty of features with the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL such as the informative histogram display and over-exposure highlight alert, seven selectable AF points which gave us accurate focusing even in low light conditions, PictBridge support for direct printing, the dedicated DiGIC processor for improved image quality and the Independent Orientation Sensor which automatically rotates vertical captures the right way up. When it comes to image quality, the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL proves its worth with good color reproduction and excellent noise control that performed outstandingly even at the camera’s highest ISO value of 1600.
Something to get with your ang pow money?
The Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL body comes at a suggested retail price of S$1899. For a mere S$100 more, the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 lens comes bundled in the kit version at a suggested retail price of S$1999; though local stores have priced the kit version in the S$1700-S$1800 region. At such a killer price for a digital SLR camera (with lens!) producing the quality image that it does and at the same time catering most features needed for entry-level photography as well as more advanced features (though limited) for the serious amateurs; we warrant the Canon EOS 300D DIGITAL a 4 stars rating as a budgeted entry-level digital SLR.
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