Canon 1D Mark IV Comparison Review
The Canon EOS-1D Mark IV is a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera that was officially introduced in October 2009 and is equipped with an APS-H sensor. It offers a resolution of 16 megapixel.
Is the Canon 1D Mark IV a good camera? The 1D Mark IV has a Camera Elo of 1779. This rating puts the 1D Mark IV among the top 50 percent of all digital single lens reflex cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (APS cameras), the 1D Mark IV ranks below average. Based on its within category standings, the camera earns a 3-star performance rating.
|Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Digital single lens reflex|
|Canon EF mount lenses|
|16 MP, APS-H Sensor|
|ISO 100-12800 (50-102400)|
|3.0" LCD, 920k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|10 shutter flaps per second|
|1500 shots per battery charge|
|156 x 157 x 80 mm, 1230 g|
Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.
Body comparison with a credit card
An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Canon 1D Mark IV vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Canon 1D Mark IV alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.
|Canon 1D Mark IV||156 mm||157 mm||80 mm||1230 g||1500||Y||Oct 2009||4,999||-||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Canon 1D X Mark II« »||158 mm||168 mm||83 mm||1530 g||1210||Y||Feb 2016||5,999||Canon 1D X Mark II|
|Canon 1D X« »||158 mm||168 mm||83 mm||1551 g||1120||Y||Oct 2011||6,799||-||Canon 1D X|
|Canon 60D« »||145 mm||106 mm||79 mm||755 g||1100||Y||Aug 2010||1,399||-||Canon 60D|
|Canon 7D« »||148 mm||111 mm||74 mm||860 g||800||Y||Sep 2009||1,699||-||Canon 7D|
|Canon 5D Mark II« »||152 mm||114 mm||75 mm||850 g||850||Y||Sep 2008||3,499||-||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Canon 50D« »||146 mm||108 mm||74 mm||822 g||800||Y||Aug 2008||1,299||-||Canon 50D|
|Canon 1D Mark III« »||156 mm||157 mm||80 mm||1155 g||2200||Y||Feb 2007||4,499||-||Canon 1D Mark III|
|Canon 1Ds Mark II« »||156 mm||158 mm||80 mm||1215 g||1200||Y||Sep 2004||7,999||-||Canon 1Ds Mark II|
|Nikon D4« »||160 mm||157 mm||91 mm||1340 g||2600||Y||Jan 2012||5,999||-||Nikon D4|
|Nikon D3S« »||160 mm||157 mm||88 mm||1240 g||4200||Y||Oct 2009||5,199||-||Nikon D3S|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Canon 1D Mark IV was launched in the US market at a price of $4,999. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
The Canon 1D Mark IV features an APS-H sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.3. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Canon 1D Mark IV among the large-sensor cameras that aim for top notch image quality.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most cameras. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|Canon 1D Mark IV||APS-H||16.0||4896||3264||1080/30p||22.8||12.0||1320||74||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Canon 1D X Mark II« »||Full Frame||20.0||5472||3648||4K/60p||24.1||13.5||3207||88||Canon 1D X Mark II|
|Canon 1D X« »||Full Frame||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||23.8||11.8||2786||82||Canon 1D X|
|Canon 60D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.2||11.5||813||66||Canon 60D|
|Canon 7D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.0||11.7||854||66||Canon 7D|
|Canon 5D Mark II« »||Full Frame||21.0||5616||3744||1080/30p||23.7||11.9||1815||79||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Canon 50D« »||APS-C||15.1||4752||3168||-||21.8||11.4||696||63||Canon 50D|
|Canon 1D Mark III« »||APS-H||10.1||3888||2592||-||22.7||11.7||1078||71||Canon 1D Mark III|
|Canon 1Ds Mark II« »||Full Frame||16.6||4992||3328||-||23.3||11.3||1480||74||Canon 1Ds Mark II|
|Nikon D4« »||Full Frame||16.2||4928||3280||1080/30p||24.7||13.1||2965||89||Nikon D4|
|Nikon D3S« »||Full Frame||12.1||4256||2832||720/24p||23.5||12.0||3253||82||Nikon D3S|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The 1D Mark IV indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the 1D Mark IV can use is 1080/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the 1D Mark IV has an optical viewfinder that provides a field of view of 100% and a magnification of 0.58x. The following tables report on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon 1D Mark IV and comparable cameras.
|Canon 1D Mark IV||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||10.0||n||n||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Canon 1D X Mark II« »||optical||Y||3.2||1620||fixed||Y||1/8000s||16.0||n||n||Canon 1D X Mark II|
|Canon 1D X« »||optical||Y||3.2||1040||fixed||n||1/8000s||14.0||n||n||Canon 1D X|
|Canon 60D« »||optical||Y||3.0||1040||swivel||n||1/8000s||5.3||Y||n||Canon 60D|
|Canon 7D« »||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||8.0||Y||n||Canon 7D|
|Canon 5D Mark II« »||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||3.9||n||n||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Canon 50D« »||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.3||Y||n||Canon 50D|
|Canon 1D Mark III« »||optical||Y||3.0||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||10.0||n||n||Canon 1D Mark III|
|Canon 1Ds Mark II« »||optical||Y||2.0||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||4.0||n||n||Canon 1Ds Mark II|
|Nikon D4« »||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||1/8000s||11.0||n||n||Nikon D4|
|Nikon D3S« »||optical||Y||3.0||921||fixed||n||1/8000s||11.0||n||n||Nikon D3S|
One useful feature of the 1D Mark IV is a presence of a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Canon 1D Mark IV||Y||stereo||-||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Canon 1D X Mark II« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||3.0||-||-||-||Canon 1D X Mark II|
|Canon 1D X« »||Y||mono||-||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 1D X|
|Canon 60D« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 60D|
|Canon 7D« »||Y||mono||-||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 7D|
|Canon 5D Mark II« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Canon 50D« »||Y||-||-||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 50D|
|Canon 1D Mark III« »||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 1D Mark III|
|Canon 1Ds Mark II« »||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 1Ds Mark II|
|Nikon D4« »||Y||mono||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D4|
|Nikon D3S« »||Y||stereo||-||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D3S|
It is notable that the 1D Mark IV has a microphone port. Such an external microphone input can help to substantially improve the quality of audio recordings when a good external microphone is used.
While the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the 1D Mark IV in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable. This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).
|Canon 1D Mark IV||-||89/100||-||5/5||-||Oct 2009||4,999||-||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Canon 1D X Mark II« »||-||89/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||5,999||Canon 1D X Mark II|
|Canon 1D X« »||-||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2011||6,799||-||Canon 1D X|
|Canon 60D« »||+||79/100||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2010||1,399||-||Canon 60D|
|Canon 7D« »||+ +||84/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2009||1,699||-||Canon 7D|
|Canon 5D Mark II« »||91/100||79/100||4/5||5/5||-||Sep 2008||3,499||-||Canon 5D Mark II|
|Canon 50D« »||+ +||+ +||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2008||1,299||-||Canon 50D|
|Canon 1D Mark III« »||-||-||-||o||-||Feb 2007||4,499||-||Canon 1D Mark III|
|Canon 1Ds Mark II« »||-||+ +||-||-||-||Sep 2004||7,999||-||Canon 1Ds Mark II|
|Nikon D4« »||-||-||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Jan 2012||5,999||-||Nikon D4|
|Nikon D3S« »||-||89/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Oct 2009||5,199||-||Nikon D3S|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.
Canon 1D Mark IV FAQ
Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the 1D Mark IV.
What is the technology behind the imaging sensor in the 1D Mark IV?
The camera has a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.
Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?
Canon equipped the 1D Mark IV with the DIGIC IV image processor.
What is the ISO sensitivity range of the 1D Mark IV?
The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 50-102400.
What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV?
Canon mentions a shutter rating of 300 000 actuations for the 1D Mark IV. This number represents a Mean Time before Failure, that is an average value. The shutter might fail earlier, or it might last longer. Anyway, in order to exhaust the expected shutter life of the 1D Mark IV over, say, three years, one would have to take about 300 pictures each and every day.
What is the fastest shutter speed that can be used with flash?
The 1D Mark IV's flash sync speed is 1/300 sec.
Which battery does the 1D Mark IV use?
The camera gets its power from the LP-E4 (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.
Camera to camera comparisons
In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities with other camera models, just use the search menu below. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Canon 10D vs Canon 1D Mark IV
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Canon 6D
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Canon M10
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Canon SX740
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Nikon Coolpix A
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Nikon D200
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Nikon D3300
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Olympus TG-5
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Panasonic G7
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Sony A6500
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Sony NEX-5N
- Canon 1D Mark IV vs Sony RX100 III
|Camera Model||Canon 1D Mark IV|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Canon EF mount lenses|
|Launch Date||October 2009|
|Launch Price||USD 4999|
|Sensor Format||APS-H Sensor|
|Sensor Size||27.9 x 18.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||518.94 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||33.5 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||16 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4896 x 3264 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||5.70 μm|
|Pixel Density||3.08 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100-12800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||50-102400 ISO|
|Image Processor||DIGIC IV|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||74|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||22.8|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||12.0|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||1320|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%|
|Top-Level Screen||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||920k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen|
|Autofocus System||Phase-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||No Peaking Feature|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/8000s|
|Continuous Shooting||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Shutter Life Expectancy||300 000 actuations|
|Silent Shooting||no E-Shutter|
|Time Lapse Photography||no Intervalometer|
|Fill Flash||no On-Board Flash|
|Storage Medium||CF or SDHC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Dual card slots|
|UHS card support||no|
|Studio Flash||PC Sync socket|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body|
|Battery Type||LP-E4 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||1500 shots per charge|
156 x 157 x 80 mm
(6.1 x 6.2 x 3.1 in)
|Camera Weight||1230 g (43.4 oz)|
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