When I saw that I needed a faster camera for action and built-in continuous drive shooting, Estelle Claassen suggested a Canon EOS 600, because she used one. It was the state of art in photography when I changed to automatic SLR camera with my budget. She went to the UK and bought it for a mere £125 with two lenses. In South African money at the time, it was a LOT of money to invest…..
I didn’t have a Canon flash at the time and used the NISSIN flash from my Ricoh. All I had to do was to adjust under the head a pin and it can be used on Canon.
What I really liked about this camera was the fact that you could adjust the points where you want to have in focus. Can’t remember the custom setting on this but it worked like this. You press the shutter half way where you want to focus, release the button and then focus on the other point that you want to have in focus. Press the shutter release and all in that focal distance will be sharp. Bear in mind you must have a small aperture setting if you want to have a nice depth filed for landscapes.
After I got a new Sigma 28-300lens from Jessops in London, the camera for some reason inside the camera where you attach the lens, a plastic pin that activates the auto focus broke by where and tear. I took it Jessops in London and they couldn’t fix it for me. The alternative was to buy new technology and the best model in my budget if I trade it there was to buy the Canon EOS 30 with a data back. The price was bit steep for me and I had to decide if I’m going to bite the bullet and do it. There was a customer who was after a Canon EOS 600 for spares, he must have overheard my dilemma and as I want to leave the shop, he called me aside. He said he will do me a deal, he will buy the camera from me and then I could use that money to get the Canon EOS 30 with data back. I was in the clouds and done the deal.
My biggest disappointment was when I attached the Sigma 28-300 lens to it and it gave an error message, I couldn’t use the lens on the newer technology. I remember my friend Philip Fischer, who was working at a pub in London Victoria who also had a Canon EOS 600 and only a 35-70mm lens. I called him and said I want to see him. I explained to him my situation and we agreed that I can use his lens and he mine. At last I could use the new toy and took loads of 36 Fuji Reala film that coming past months.
I always heard about digital cameras and just browse the streets of London, Tottenham Court Road to be precise. I visited about every shop that has digital cameras and knew one day I will be able to purchase one.
The Canon EOS 600 was still in use for me and I could afford the digital SLR at the time and my mouth was drooling when I saw a guy or girl just walked into a shop, asked a few questions and write the cheque or use the plastic money and walk out of the shop with a £1600 camera, lenses and flash included.
There it began serious photography and after about six years I bought a Canon A70 point and shoot camera. Nice and compact and did what I need that time. After about three years later I bought a Canon EOS 30D and used various lenses and was happy for 18months and upgrade after another 18months to the EOS 50D. I though I was in the clouds with the camera, but began to give me more trouble than I thought.
It could not give me pin sharp images where I focused, doesn’t matter what setting I used. For example when I attached a F2.8 lens on it, the only sharp images I could get was at F4 or F5.6 and had a big problem with back focus. I realised that when I done the 3D paper test, placing paper containers with writing with a distance of 25mm apart form each other. Focused on the centre of Object number 3 there was no sharp image but only on Object number 1 at the back, leaving me with a focus drop of 50mm. On the micro adjustments at custom settings, I had to dial a full +20 out to get an average sharp image on Object number 3.
I took the camera to a well know company in London where they replace the IS USM system on the lens that was NOT the fault, even after I explained to the desk clerk what the problem is on the camera and NOT the lens. They even want me to pay for the wrong work but it is under warranty and not the lens. I asked them if they did not have the lens, what work have they done? Then I read the job card they did do a full recalibration of the Canon camera.
I did report this to CANON UK and did not hear from then since even I emailed them to say if this cannot happen to many customers. I did say I will change brand, they didn’t even bother to reply to me to apologize for what have happened to me.
Next up: Swap to NIKON