Canon 40D Comparison Review
The Canon EOS 40D is a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera that was revealed to the public in August 2007 and is equipped with an APS-C sensor. It offers a resolution of 10.1 megapixel.
Is the Canon 40D a good camera? The 40D has a Camera Elo of 1470. This rating puts the 40D below average of all digital single lens reflex cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (APS cameras), the 40D also ranks below average. – Well, the Canon 40D is more than 12 years old, and there have been many other good digital cameras released since 2007.
|Digital single lens reflex|
|Canon EF mount lenses|
|10.1 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|ISO 100-1600 (100-3200)|
|3.0" LCD, 230k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|6.5 shutter flaps per second|
|750 shots per battery charge|
|146 x 108 x 74 mm, 822 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
The physical dimensions of the Canon 40D relative to a credit card are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Canon 40D 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 40D||5.7 in||4.3 in||2.9 in||29.0 oz||750||n||Aug 2007||1,299||Canon 40D|
|Canon T3« »||5.1 in||3.9 in||3.1 in||17.5 oz||700||n||Feb 2011||449||Canon T3|
|Canon 60D« »||5.7 in||4.2 in||3.1 in||26.6 oz||1100||Y||Aug 2010||1,399||Canon 60D|
|Canon 50D« »||5.7 in||4.3 in||2.9 in||29.0 oz||800||Y||Aug 2008||1,299||Canon 50D|
|Canon XS« »||5.0 in||3.9 in||2.6 in||17.7 oz||500||n||Jun 2008||449||Canon XS|
|Canon XSi« »||5.1 in||3.9 in||2.4 in||18.5 oz||500||n||Jan 2008||799||Canon XSi|
|Canon 30D« »||5.7 in||4.2 in||2.9 in||27.7 oz||750||n||Feb 2006||1,399||Canon 30D|
|Canon XTi« »||5.0 in||3.3 in||2.6 in||19.6 oz||370||n||Aug 2006||799||Canon XTi|
|Canon 20D« »||5.7 in||4.2 in||2.8 in||27.2 oz||700||n||Aug 2004||1,499||Canon 20D|
|Canon 10D« »||5.9 in||4.2 in||3.0 in||30.0 oz||500||n||Feb 2003||1,999||Canon 10D|
|Nikon D90« »||5.2 in||4.1 in||3.0 in||24.8 oz||850||n||Aug 2008||1,299||Nikon D90|
|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 40D was launched in the US market at a price of $1,299. 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. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
The Canon 40D features an APS-C sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Canon 40D among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability.
For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|Canon 40D||APS-C||10.1||3888||2592||none||22.1||11.3||703||64||Canon 40D|
|Canon T3||APS-C||12.2||4272||2848||720/30p||21.9||11.0||755||62||Canon T3|
|Canon 60D||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.2||11.5||813||66||Canon 60D|
|Canon 50D||APS-C||15.1||4752||3168||none||21.8||11.4||696||63||Canon 50D|
|Canon XS||APS-C||10.1||3888||2592||none||..||..||..||..||Canon XS|
|Canon XSi||APS-C||12.2||4272||2848||none||21.9||10.8||692||61||Canon XSi|
|Canon 30D||APS-C||8.2||3504||2336||none||21.5||10.8||736||59||Canon 30D|
|Canon XTi||APS-C||10.1||3888||2592||none||22.1||11.0||664||62||Canon XTi|
|Canon 20D||APS-C||8.2||3504||2336||none||21.9||11.0||721||62||Canon 20D|
|Canon 10D||APS-C||6.3||3072||2048||none||21.1||10.9||571||57||Canon 10D|
|Nikon D90||APS-C||12.2||4288||2848||720/24p||22.7||12.5||977||73||Nikon D90|
It should be noted that unlike many modern cameras, the 40D does not provide the possibility to capture videos.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the 40D has an optical viewfinder that provides a field of view of 95% and a magnification of 0.59x. The following tables report on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon 40D and comparable cameras.
|Canon 40D||optical||Y||3.0||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.5||Y||n||Canon 40D|
|Canon T3||optical||n||2.7||230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Canon T3|
|Canon 60D||optical||Y||3.0||1040||swivel||n||1/8000s||5.3||Y||n||Canon 60D|
|Canon 50D||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.3||Y||n||Canon 50D|
|Canon XS||optical||n||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Canon XS|
|Canon XSi||optical||n||3.0||230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.5||Y||n||Canon XSi|
|Canon 30D||optical||Y||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0||Y||n||Canon 30D|
|Canon XTi||optical||n||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Canon XTi|
|Canon 20D||optical||Y||1.8||118||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0||Y||n||Canon 20D|
|Canon 10D||optical||Y||1.8||118||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Canon 10D|
|Nikon D90||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.5||Y||n||Nikon D90|
One convenient feature of the 40D is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.
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 40D and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Canon 40D||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 40D|
|Canon T3||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon T3|
|Canon 60D||Y||mono||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 60D|
|Canon 50D||Y||none||none||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 50D|
|Canon XS||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Canon XS|
|Canon XSi||Y||none||none||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon XSi|
|Canon 30D||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 30D|
|Canon XTi||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Canon XTi|
|Canon 20D||Y||none||none||-||-||none||1.1||-||-||-||Canon 20D|
|Canon 10D||Y||none||none||-||-||none||1.1||-||-||-||Canon 10D|
|Nikon D90||Y||mono||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D90|
While the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the 40D. 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 why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, 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 40D FAQ
Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the 40D.
What technology is the imaging sensor in the 40D based on?
The camera is build around a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor.
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 40D with the DIGIC 3 image processor.
What is the ISO sensitivity range of the 40D?
The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1600.
What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Canon EOS 40D?
Canon mentions a shutter rating of 100 000 actuations for the 40D. 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 40D over, say, three years, one would have to take about 100 pictures each and every day.
Does the Canon 40D feature an autofocus assist light?
Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.
What is the fastest shutter speed that can be used with flash?
The 40D's flash sync speed is 1/250 sec.
Which battery does the 40D use?
The camera gets its power from the BP-511A (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.
Is there a vertical grip available for the 40D?
Yes, Canon offers the BG-E2N as an optional accessory to facilitate shooting in portrait orientation and to provide additional battery power.
Camera to camera comparisons
In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities with other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
|Camera Model||Canon 40D|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Canon EF mount lenses|
|Launch Date||August 2007|
|Launch Price||USD 1299|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||22.3 x 14.9 mm|
|Sensor Area||332.27 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||26.8 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||10.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3888 x 2592 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||5.73 μm|
|Pixel Density||3.03 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100-1600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100-3200 ISO|
|Image Processor||DIGIC 3|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||64|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||22.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||11.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||703|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||95%|
|Top-Level Screen||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen|
|Focus System||Phase-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||No Peaking Feature|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/8000s|
|Continuous Shooting||6.5 shutter flaps/s|
|Shutter Life Expectancy||100 000 actuations|
|Silent Shooting||no E-Shutter|
|Time Lapse Photography||no Intervalometer|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||CF cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot|
|Studio Flash||PC Sync socket|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi|
|Battery Type||BP-511A power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||750 shots per charge|
146 x 108 x 74 mm
(5.7 x 4.3 x 2.9 in)
|Camera Weight||822 g (29.0 oz)|
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