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Why are Canon Lenses White?

When I bought my Canon 350D back in 2006, digital photography was starting to boom (yep – I jumped on the bandwagon) and it was rare to see someone toting a DSLR and lens combo worth more than my first car like we commonly see today. Coming from a relatively small town and with digital photography only just starting to take off, seeing a white Canon lens always caught my eye and  left me salivating from a distance over a lens that could fetch upwards of $10k!

$12k for a lens. Bargain.
< span=""> href=””>$12k for a white lens with a fancy red ring? Bargain.

So why are some Canon lenses white?

Real answer? Marketing. Company answer? Lowering heat.

Creating equipment that is recognisable provides instant brand recognition for Canon. See a a white lens a mile away or while you are watching a sports event on TV? You will know it is a Canon lens. Sure, if you know photography equipment, you would be able to pick out a high end black Nikon lens. They (Canon) want people to know when people are using their gear rather than their competitors to create brand awareness.

But according to Canon, it is not all about the marketing and there is some logic behind why some Canon lenses are white. As lenses contain glass elements, these expand with heat which is generally not a problem with smaller compact lenses due to the amount of expansion being small. But when your larger lenses come along like a Canon white series lens, these often have larger glass elements which utilise elements made of fluorite which is much more sensitive to heat than your standard compact lens.  For this reason, Canon uses the white surface to reflect the sunlight which helps keep the lens cooler in warmer/extreme conditions.

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Canon 5D Mark III Rumors

Jumping on board the Canon 5D rumour mill again but this time with the Mark III.

Feature Rumors

First up via Canon Rumors with specifications from a Japanese to English translation.

  • 28megapixel CMOS sensor. Achieved by introducing new technologies such as low-noise photodiode
  • Sensor Size 36.0 × 24.0mm 1.0x
  • Wide low-noise ISO sensitivity ISO100 ~ 12800 (extension L: 50, H1: 25600, H2: 51200, H3: 102400)
  • The six frames * Dual DIGIC4 / s provides continuous shooting
  • 98 percent of the viewfinder field of view, magnification 0.71 times. With the electronic level
  • A high-speed AF system. Double Cross Centre, Cross assists 19 points – 26 points. 5 AF point selection mode, types of automatic. Advanced AI Servo AF
  • 63-segment metering. 1920 × 1080 30/25/24 frame Video
  • Crop video feature. 10X SD, HD four times, three times in full HD.

According to Canon Rumors, the Canon 5D Mark II replacement is due for release sometime around Q1 or Q2 2011.  I must admit, I’ll be very surprised if it does come out around then. The Canon 5D Mark II is still a very capable and adapt camera that in my opinion only requires minor rather then significant changes. But that being said if the past life cycles of the Canon 5D and Mark II are anything to go by then it does seem likely to expect a release for sometime mid to late next year.

Feature Wishlist

Some of these aren’t likely but it’s nice to dream.

  • Better weather sealing. I realise the current Canon 5D Mark II does handle itself quite well in weather conditions but it would be nice to have weather sealing to that similar of the 1D professional series. Whether Canon would bring this into it’s non professional bodies is questionable as it is an obvious selling point for the professional series.
  • Built in intervalometer similar to that implemented in Nikon bodies.
  • Built in GPS tracker After all, this camera is very popular with landscape photographers.
  • Additional video features. I’ll admit I don’t play with the video mode all that often but it would be nice to have the ability to access higher FPS, in camera time lapse feature and also not being constrained to one video format.
  • *Social media accessibility from your camera. I’m kidding.
  • Less noise at higher ISO. Rather then adding ridiculous ISO capabilities (25,600), let’s just focus on perfecting what we already have.
  • More auto focus (AF) points. I was quite disappointed with the AF point coverage of the Canon 5D Mark II and would love to see a lot more in a future release.
  • *3D capabilities.
  • Improvements to the screen. I’ll admit, the screen is quite amazing but further improving the quality and increasing the size of this would be a nice addition.
  • Dual memory slots. With the increasing size of pictures and now videos, it’s time for dual memory slots similar to that seen in the 1D professional series bodies.
*Yes.. I’m being sarcastic about 3D capabilities and social media accessibility.

Will I be upgrading? Doubtful unless the changes are significant. For me upgrading from the Canon 350D to the Canon 5D Mark II was an easy choice but justifying upgrading from a Canon 5D Mark II to a III will be difficult. For this reason it wouldn’t surprise me if we don’t see a release until 2012. Are users really in a rush for a replacement of this body? I’m not.

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Canon 5D Mark II / Canon 50D / New Lens Rumors

More Canon 5D Mark II and Canon 50D Rumors from DPreview

Some recent Canon 5D Mark II rumors which even speculate of a Canon 50D and new lens specifications. I’m liking these Canon 5D Mark II specifications especially the MP size but not quite sure if the pop up flash is necessary and a live view LCD would be nice but not really necessary. According to the source these additions/changes to the Canon lineup are due to hit Photokina later in the year which would rule out a release later this month of the Canon 5D Mark II as some have suggested.

Canon 5D Mark II

– 16.7 Megapixel FF sensor
– Single Digic III Processor
– ISO 100-3200 (Low: 50 + High 6400)
– 6-8 fps – depending on grip
– 3″ High Resolution OLED LCD
– will accept EF Lenses, not EF-S
– 11 point AF
– 35 Zone Metering
– Viewfinder: 96 percent coverage .72 magnification
– Pop up flash
– New Lithium Ion Battery
– Weather Sealing slightly better than 40D

Canon 50D

– 12.2 Megapixel APS-C sensor
– Single Digic III Processor
– ISO 100-3200 (High 6400)
– 6-8 fps depending on grip
– 3″ High Resolution OLED LCD
– Will accept EF and EF-S Lenses
– 11 point AF
– 35 Zone metering
– Viewfinder: 100 percent coverage .95 magnification
– Pop up flash
– New Lithium Ion Battery
– Weather sealing slightly better than 40D

24-70mm f/2.8L IS
18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 IS