Exploring the Features of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II: A Comprehensive Review

The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II is a top-of-the-line DSLR camera that boasts impressive features perfect for professional photographers. In this article, we'll take a closer look at its key attributes, including image quality, autofocus, and connectivity. We'll also discuss its strengths and weaknesses, so you can decide if this camera is worth investing in.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II article cover photo

Key Features

Oct 11 2005


17 megapixels


Sensor TypeFull frame

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Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III

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Canon EOS-1D Mark II

Released Jun 14 2004 | 8MP resolution

Canon EOS-1D Mark II N thumbnail

Canon EOS-1D Mark II N

Released Aug 22 2005 | 8MP resolution

Overview of the EOS-1Ds Mark II

Professional photographers demand the best tools to capture high-quality images. The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II is a camera that fits the bill. Offering superior image quality, exceptional autofocus, and versatile connectivity features, this DSLR camera is a favorite among professionals. In this review, we'll delve into the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II's key features and capabilities. Whether you're a seasoned professional or an aspiring photographer, you'll find valuable insights that will help you make an informed decision when considering this camera. So, without further ado, let's explore what this mighty camera has to offer!

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High-resolution sensor
Professional-grade body
Wide dynamic range
Weather-sealed construction
Fast autofocus system
Dual memory card slots


Heavy weight
Limited ISO range
Slow burst shooting speed
No video recording capability
Obsolete technology

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II

Weather sealed
Dimensions156 x 158 x 80mm

Weather Sealing

The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II camera is equipped with environmental seals that make it resistant to weather, preventing water and dust from entering the camera. If you enjoy outdoor photography and need a camera that can handle extreme conditions, the EOS-1Ds Mark II is an excellent choice.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderOptical (pentaprism)
Screen TypeFixed Type
Screen Resolution230k dots
Body typeLarge SLR

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fixed type 2.00" screen, with a display resolution of 230k dots. This makes the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


EOS-1Ds Mark II includes a optical (pentaprism) viewfinder with no electronic viewfinder of resolution with a coverage of 100% and a magnification of 0.7x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II has a 17MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 17 pixels. Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II has a native ISO range of 100 - 3200 which can be boosted to null - null. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Oct 11 2005


100 - 3200

ISO Range

SensorFull frame
Extended ISOnull - null
Max resolution4992 x 3328 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


74 / 102

Color Depth

23.3 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

11.3 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

1480 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II camera has above average color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also average, allowing it to retain low amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is poor, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the EOS-1Ds Mark II is average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: Full frame



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageCompact Flash (Type I or II), SD card
Battery Life
Battery Model
Wireless Connectivity


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II supports Compact Flash (Type I or II), SD card with 2 slots for storage. Having dual SD card slots on the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II is highly advantageous as it mitigates the risk of losing footage due to memory card malfunctions. This feature is particularly beneficial for wedding photography and other professional settings.


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II uses the undefined model of undefined. This is rated for undefined shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II does not have a built-in flash, but it does offer a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/8000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II includes phase detection autofocus (AF), with 45 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II?

The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II features a CMOS sensor

Is the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II weather sealed?

Yes the EOS-1Ds Mark II does have weather sealing.

When was the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II announced?

The Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II was announced on Oct 11 2005

Does the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II have in-body image stabilization?

No the EOS-1Ds Mark II does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Canon EOS-1Ds Mark II?

The EOS-1Ds Mark II has a native ISO range of 100-3200, which can be expanded to ISO null-null for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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