Canon EOS 40D – Camera Review: A Good Choice for Photography (Old is Gold)

Canon EOS 40D

Good afternoon friends. In this article I want to make a small review of the Canon EOS 40D Camera, in the common people also referred to as the “40”. Canon 40D – I can say, my first own DSLR camera. Before that I used a Canon 500D camera borrowed from my brother. Canon EOS is already an old man, it was released almost ten years ago (announced on August 20, 2007). But the camera is in no hurry to retire – this camera can still often be seen in the hands of novice (and not only) photographers. Excellent color rendering, rate of fire, convenient design and advanced settings – this camera has a lot of goodies. So, let’s go in order…

What is the Canon EOS 40D?

Canon EOS 40D belongs to the semi-professional “line”. Brief performance characteristics of this great one: 22.5×15.0mm matrix, 10MP resolution, exposure range from 1/8000 to 30 seconds, 5 manual and six automatic exposure metering modes, 9-point focusing, shooting speed – 6.5 frames per second, the ISO range is 100-3200. The camera weighs 740 gm.

Power supply: battery BP-511 (A), BP-512, flash drive – CompactFlash (CF). The camera received fairly high ratings and user reviews. After the 30D predecessor and 50D scolded by the photographers, the “forty” seems to be the best choice for a reasonable price. It comfortably settled down between the “neighbors” and so far, does not want to give in to them at all, but in many ways even surpasses them. This is a worthwhile thing in its price niche, and there is nothing to argue about.

The Canon EOS 40D has a solid weight and size compared to the XXXD and XXXXD cameras (hobbyist models). After the Canon 500D, for the Canon 40D body first time, the forty seemed cumbersome and not very convenient to me. Fortunately, this sensation quickly passes, and after that you already experience discomfort when you pick up the Canon 500D. Having shot the “40” for a week, you begin to understand that the dimensions are optimal – the camera sits perfectly in the hand, without burdening or straining. Perhaps female representatives with graceful palms will disagree with me)) But for a man’s hand, this camera is just that.

The first plus of this camera (especially for novice photographers) is that in the secondary market this camera can be bought for a ridiculous price. Time passes, the previously released models of cameras are becoming obsolete, but physically still capable of giving odds to some of their “descendants”. Undoubtedly, the “forty” will easily compete with many younger camera models.

Canon EOS 40D
Canon EOS 40D

Well, Let’s Take A Look at The Strengths of This Camera

  • Metal Body (made of magnesium alloy). The camera is quite robust and lightweight at the same time. Of course, you shouldn’t drop it on purpose and check its strength, but it feels like the body is quite durable.
  • Ergonomics. As for me, the location of the buttons is very convenient (except for the power button). Of course, having switched from “five hundred” to “forty”, at first it was uncomfortable for me. But then everything fell into place.
  • Shooting Speed. Of course, this is not a Canon 1Ds machine gun with its 12 frames per second, but the shooting speed is impressive. We grab the “forty” and run headlong to shoot the dynamics. For wildlife photography – the best option. True, you will also have to pay for the rate of fire – the flash drive is filled with pictures for one or two. So, I advise you to stock up on several flash drives or one “dimensionless”. But now, you will certainly not regret that you missed a frame due to the slowness of the camera.
  • Wider ISO Range compared to the XXXD series. On Canon 500D I was depressed that the set of ISO values ​​is limited: 100, 200, 400,800. Well, what if I need more than 400, but less than 800? “Five hundred” in this regard could not help. But 40D – please. There are quite a few intermediate ISO values ​​(values ​​from 100 to 1600 in 1/3 increments).
  • CF Card (reliable, convenient, soundly). True, they are more expensive than SD, but you have to pay for quality and reliability. Better to go broke a little than to spit and mourn the irrevocably gone pictures.
  • Another Plus is the second screen. I appreciated its necessity when filming in the morning on a capercaillie current. If necessary, the screen lights up for a couple of seconds when you press the button. A very useful thing, especially at dusk.
  • Live View Mode (it helps a lot when shooting landscapes and macro) The inclusion of Live View can be programmed to the central button of the control wheel.
  • Fairly simple and intuitive menu.
  • It’s also nice that the 40D uses 14-bit color depth in RAW files, the files themselves weigh 8-15 MB.

But, as usually happens, there were some drawbacks (where can we go without them). Someone blames it on the flaws of engineers, someone on the insidious intrigues of marketers who deliberately “cripple” the cameras, each time specially creating flaws in the cameras so that buyers have an incentive to buy new models. Let’s take a look at them.

You may also like to read: Canon IVY CLIQ Plus and IVY CLIQ 2 Instant Cameras Presented by Canon.

Weaknesses of The Camera

  • Noise at High ISO (in my opinion, noise is already noticeable at ISO above 800), although an unassuming and inexperienced user, most likely, will not find fault. Again, noise is affected by the shooting conditions. In good light, the same noises are hardly noticeable on IMO above 1000.
  • Deceptive Screen. After taking a dozen test shots, I looked at them on the display and was horrified. Later, after looking through the pictures on the monitor screen and reading about this defect of the “forty”, I calmed down and life went well. But the screen lies godlessly, it’s a fact.
  • Auto White Balance is upsetting. The camera often “misses” the BB, and the photographer then has to correct it in the photo editor. For those who shoot in RAW, this is no big deal.
  • The camera is morally outdated, although many do not mind.
  • After “five hundred” I miss the video on this camera. Of course, video is by no means the most important thing in a DSLR, but sometimes you want to…
  • You need to get used to the on/off checkbox.
  • It is not clear why there are only two values ​​for the timer – 2s and 10 seconds? Was it really difficult to make intermediate values ​​or manual selection? Sometimes it comes in handy.
  • Spot metering only in the center circle.
  • In LV mode there is no fast focusing by the image sensor and it is impossible to switch the exposure metering mode.
You may also like to read: Canon PowerShot ZOOM (Telescope Type Camera): Hands-on 100mm/400mm lens is in Your Pocket.

Additional Camera Features

Synchro connector for studio flashes, video output, USB, remote control connector. There is also an exposure bracketing function, a built-in flash with a guide number of 13 and a sync speed of 1/250 second, and many other “goodies”.

Canon EOS 40D
Canon EOS 40D

Get It on Amazon


We can say that the Canon EOS 40D is a solid camera that does an excellent job of its duties. If you choose the first camera for photo hunting – the “40D” is just what you need. It’s a decent choice for a good price. It allows you to expand your shooting options and experience the beauty of using a semi-pro camera. All health and good photography.

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