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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EOS Digital Cameras 
Thread started 17 Jul 2011 (Sunday) 21:50
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"minimum" DSLR to get metal body

John ­ from ­ PA
Cream of the Crop
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Jul 17, 2011 21:50 |  #1

I'm turned off by the quality of many Canon DSLR models because of the plastic body. The other night I was with someone that had a T2i with about 14000 exposures and the lens actually wobbled on the body. Admittedly the owner was a semi-pro who does a lot of landscape work and is constanty changing lenses.

In the Canon line, and preferably with current models or one generation back, what is the minimum model that will get me a metal body? I have a considerable number of EF lenses from 35 mm film days that I understand are also useable with most of the Canon line.

Thanks for the help,

John from PA

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Jul 17, 2011 21:56 |  #2

In the current line up, that would be a 7D. If you're willing to go one generation back then the 50D has a metal body.
If you are doing a lot of landscape work, consider the older 5D classic which also has a metal body.

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Jul 17, 2011 22:01 |  #3

You may be disappointed to know that many of the metal bodies will have wobbly or loose lenses when mounted too. But if we look at the $400 or less price range, you would be looking at the 1D classic, and the 20D, 30D, and possibly a few 40Ds.

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Cream of the Crop
7,198 posts
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Joined Mar 2005
Location: SoCal, USA
Jul 17, 2011 22:16 |  #4

My L lens wobbles on my metal body.

2,551 posts
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Jul 17, 2011 22:18 |  #5
bannedPermanent ban

You guys mean theres movement at the actual mounting location??

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67 posts
Joined Jan 2011
Location: Southern Maine
Jul 17, 2011 22:21 |  #6

What do you guys consider "wobble" ? My 50D is tight with a 24-105 mounted. The only movement is a very slight rotation due to operational tolerances.

You are either very picky, or put higher then average wear on your gear.

Cream of the Crop
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Jul 17, 2011 22:33 |  #7

It's pretty much an accepted fact that some lens/ body combos produce a slightly less than snug fit. Some of my lenses are quite tight, while others have a slight amount of play.

KVN ­ Photo
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Jul 17, 2011 22:47 |  #8

50D, 7D, 5Dc, and 1D series body...
Maybe the cheapest alternative is a used 1D II.
But my L lenses do just fine on 500D

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Jul 17, 2011 23:06 |  #9

The only normal play is a little bit of rotational play. Of all the lenses I've owned, including some plastic-mount lenses, a few Canon metal-mount lenses, some Tamron and some Sigma lenses, as well as old primes using cheap ebay adapters, plus a few TCs and extension tubes, none have had anything other than some rotational play (and that's only noticeable on the larger lenses).

That includes my 7D as well as the bodies I used to own (300D and 20D). And the 20D had well over 50,000 actuations when I sold it and I changed lenses a lot, 300D about 20,000 actuations.

None of the camera mounts are plastic. I have no doubt you could swap lenses a lot and shoot a couple hundred thousand shots on a Rebel body and have no issues with the mount.

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Location: houston, tx
Jul 18, 2011 00:29 |  #10

any body thats not the rebel line feels pretty sturdy... even the 60d feels solid even though its not metal/magnesium

as far as the wobbly lens... it seems if you grab the lens and twist it side to side it moves slightly. i feel it a lot when a large lens is mounted to it

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Jul 18, 2011 01:28 |  #11

What do you mean by wobbles? Do you mean radial play or axial play? Every Canon body I've owned has had some radial play (rotational at the mount) in varying amounts.

I think a lot of those that say they have tight lenses would be surprised to discover this same play if the lens was held tightly in the tripod and they moved the body. The reason most never feel this play is that when the body is mounted in a tripod the lens is never moved. There is no reason to place the force required to feel this play in normal use.

The whole game changes when you mount the body to a rigidly tripod mounted lens. You grab the body to change the framing and that's when you'll feel the play there. It's slight, but on every lens/body I've owed from Canon there is play there. I just grabbed my 24-105 mounted on a nearly new 7D (with a metal body) at the base below the focus ring and then twisted, sure enough, slight play. When you mount a short lens (in other words, you mount the lens to the body) after you mount it there is no rotational force placed there. The body controls the whole shebang, you never feel the movement, but mount a long lens on a tripod and mount the body to it...

The 60D/Rebel series are not the first composite camera bodies that Canon has used. The EOS 3, a highly regarded, semi pro body; way more body than a 5D or 5D II, was a composite body. It is sturdy and tough as any body. The EOS 3 is a great camera body, with an incredible eye controlled, 45 point auto focus system. This system premiered in the EOS 3 and was subsequently placed in the EOS 1V and 1D bodies (though without the eye controlled focus which proved to be somewhat problematic).

So what I am saying is don't listen to the whining about the "plastic" body on the 60D. It's just that, people are upset that somehow their XXD camera bodies are devalued by Canon's choices on the 60D. The XXD upgrade path is now to the XD camera bodies. The name the body is called means nothing. Buy a camera, use it to take great photographs, display the great photos, if they are great, and inspire, does anyone really care what body they were taken with?

Rule books are paper they will not cushion a sudden meeting of stone and metal -ekg-

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Joined Feb 2011
Location: ny
Jul 18, 2011 01:39 |  #12

i recently acquired a 40d and i was surprised at how robust the body was. the size and feel is very similar to my 5d2 and the rubber grip feels a lot sturdier like actual leather. my old t2i was packed with more features than the 40d, but for some reason, i love this 40d way more. the rubber was losing texture on the t2i after like 4 months.

| Andrew | 5D Mark II | EOS-M | Canon 17-40mm f 4 L | Canon 35mm f 1.4 L | Canon 100mm f 2.8 L Macro | Canon 70-200mm f 4 L IS | Canon EF-M 22mm f 2.0 | Speedlite 430EX II|

DC ­ Fan
Cream of the Crop
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Jul 18, 2011 02:08 |  #13

John from PA wrote in post #12776033 (external link)
I'm turned off by the quality of many Canon DSLR models because of the plastic body. The other night I was with someone that had a T2i with about 14000 exposures and the lens actually wobbled on the body.

You'll be dissatisfied with nearly every SLR and DSLR that Canon has manufactured for the last 35 years.

Similar "plastic body" complaints were raised in the mid-1970's, when Canon started using composite metal look-alike parts in the AE-1 series (external link) of FD-mount 35mm SLR's. It's easy to find an AE-1 that looks like new.

The first DSLR that Canon manufactured, the D30 from the year 2000, (external link) had a plastic body over a steel frame. That's the same construction technique used for the T2i (external link) and most Canon DSLR's: metal underneath a plastic shell.

Also, writing as the owner of a T2i that has been in heavy use for more than a year and has seen several lenses mounted over and over again on a daily basis, from 18mm to 500mm, none of those lenses wobble on the camera mount.

Cream of the Crop
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Jul 18, 2011 02:21 |  #14

Of all my lenses, only the 100-400 wobbles. But then again, it is also an "L". ;)

Yep.. at times, there may be some play and it's within "tolerance". Better get used to it.

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Cream of the Crop
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Jul 18, 2011 07:37 |  #15

All Canon's have a metal chassis that ties into the lens mount and key structural points within the body to provide stiffness and support... While the entire body is not metal, the part that actually holds the lens is pretty much the same on all of them. With my 60 all of my lenses fit securely. Taking an experience with a single camera that you don't own and may have been dropped, etc, and making a generalization about all "plastic" Canon cameras isn't a very fair evaluation.

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"minimum" DSLR to get metal body
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