Field Review: Canon 1D Mk IV (Night 2)

Three events to shoot in one night—it’s the standard for most working photographers. They’re most likely packing two bodies, lenses, strobes, etc. The other night, I took the 1D Mk IV, one lens, one strobe, a microphone and a cable with me to three different events: the opening of the Pentax Boutique, Pepcom (a technology event) and finally to a Magnum Photos book signing party. How’d it do? Pretty darn well, actually.

Equipment

Canon 1D Mk IV

Canon 24-105mm F4 L IS

430 EX II

Samson Microphone (I got it years ago when I used to be a vocalist in a punk rock band. It works pretty well for what it’s worth despite being designed for a different reason.)

Environmental Challenges

Pentax Boutique: 5pm to 5:45pm

Pepcom: 6pm to 8pm

Magnum Photos Book Signing party: 8:15pm to 9pm

This had to have been one of my luckiest nights as a photographer in terms of lighting. All three places were very well lit. On top of this, it isn’t even dark yet in NYC at 9pm.

The lighting in the different environments gave off different colors. Both the Pentax and Magnum events had more blue toned lighting while Pepcom leaned more towards the orangish hues. This is simply the nature of where they are as events at the Manhattan Pavillion (where Pepcom was) have always been either in the dark or with orange lighting.

So what was needed from each event? Well the Pentax event featured a celebrity and the 645D, Pepcom was for 2D-x.com where lots of great vendors showed off their products, and the Magnum party was really for no other reason but to catch up with my old co-workers in the Magnum office and take a couple of snapshots of the books. All in all, they were very relaxed as the events were shot mostly for the reason of testing out the camera primarily.

Performance

All photos were shot in RAW at the full 16MP resolution and only downsized in Lightroom. The photos were shot nearly perfect the way they were.

The 1D Mk IV faced no problems at all. The 16MP sensor captured lots of detail and also was able to handle each lighting condition at high ISOs with very little fuss. I never encountered a focusing problem and using the customized focus selection with the back joystick made it much easier to shoot and compose photos.

Coupled with the 430 EX II and the 24-105mm F4 L IS, all the photos were also very sharp.

Event photographers will be very pleased with the results that will allow them to capture the heart of an event accurately with no focus problems as Canon users have complained about for years. Wedding photographers will appreciate this and the fact that they can shoot and super high ISOs with little photoshopping.

As it is, it seems that the 1D Mk IV has better high ISO control on the 5D Mk II. Don’t quote me on that yet though. That will be tested. The super high ISOs on this camera even have yet to be tested. What from it seems like though while playing with the camera last night when I got home, it will get very noisy after 6400. In terms of autofocus though, this is what the 5D Mk II should have been to begin with.

What’s really nice about this camera though is the fact that one of the card slots is an SD slot, which means that I will be able to use an Eye-Fi Pro card with it perhaps.

Gallery

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