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Canon EOS-1Ds Mark IV: the rumors begin

After only a year on the market, talk starts about an update to Canon's flagship dSLR.

Mark III ready for replacement?

After just about a year on the market, the rumors have started about a replacement for Canon's flagship EOS-1Ds dSLR. The blog trail, which seems to have started in a forum at but which I read on Photography Bay, speculates that the specifications will include the current sensor, but two Digic 4 processors which will enable a bump to ISO 12,800 and a burst rate of 6.8fps, HD video capture, and a jump to a 69-point AF system.

Though Canon Rumors gives this scuttlebutt its second-lowest credibility rating--"From a 4-legged animal"--as a possible feature set it makes some sense. Here's how the current model stacks up against its newest sibling, the 5D Mark II:

  Canon EOS 5D Mark II Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III
Price (body) $2,699 $7,999
Sensor 21.1 megapixel CMOS 21.1 megapixel CMOS
A/D conversion 14 bit 14 bit
ISO sensitivity (expanded) ISO 25,600 ISO 3200
AF system 15-pt AF
6 center AF assist points; 3 center f2.8 and wider
45-point AF
19 cross-type points; 26 Assist AF points
Continuous shooting
frames best quality JPEG/full-size raw
unlimited/14 (with UDMA card)
Viewfinder 98% coverage
magnification n/a
interchangeable focusing screen
100% coverage
0.76x magnification
interchangeable focusing screen
Shutter durability 150,000 cycles 300,000 cycles

Clearly, the newer 5D Mark II outspecs its older, much more expensive brother in a way that makes the Mark IV inevitable sooner than the typical 18-month product cycle might support. And though the specs may be someone's wish list rather than the reality, it's a pretty sensible wish list. (I'd throw in a built-in wireless flash controller, though.)

But whether it's truth, lies or wishful thinking, you can bet we'll be hearing about it ad nauseam for the next 3 to 6 months.