Sunday 1 June 2008

Canon versus unbranded accessories

I spend a lot of money on photographic equipment but even I balked at spending £40 on a Canon remote switch last year. I don't use one that often and the self-timer setting can be used in a lot of cases. So I bought a very cheap unbranded-make on eBay - in retrospect, not a very good idea. It was slightly too tight in the remote control terminal, which made it difficult to remove,  and I quickly discovered that it was not compatible with mirror lock-up (I've never actually compared a shot with and without mirror lock-up but conventional wisdom suggests that the latter should be sharper. When you take a shot, the mirror, which has previously been directly light to the viewfinder, rotates up to expose the CMOS sensor, blocking light from the viewfinder in the process - which is why you can't see your subject at the moment of taking a shot with an SLR camera. This supposedly causes the camera to vibrate sufficiently to impact on sharpness and is why many cameras offer a mirror lock-up feature - press the shutter fully once to lock the mirror and then again to take the shot. This is controlled by custom function 12 on a Canon EOS 5D). The final straw was when my unbranded remote switch recently started being unreliable. I therefore bought the Canon variant. It works perfectly but then for £40 it should!

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