Canon EOS 700 - another historic Canon EOS camera.

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by jdm_von_weinberg, Jul 2, 2010.

  1. The Canon EOS 700 was introduced March 1990 and discontinued after a year, one of the shorter product cycles for Canon EOS. A more detailed account of the camera can be found at (link)

    This camera does not look special but is one of the early "second generation" EOS models. It was a replacement and upgrade of the EOS750/EOS850 consumer line of cameras (I know, but EOS model numbering has often been a little strange, yes 750 and 850 precede the 700 model). An improved AF system was a key new element with a number of improvements, including greater speed of autofocus. At least that's what they say. My personal experience was that both the EF 50mm f/1.8 mk II and a Tamron Macro SP Di 90mm f/2.8 seemed less certain of focus than on the 650 or 620 1st generation EOS cameras. Technically speaking, the exposure system is much more sophisticated than earlier EOS cameras with the camera itself choosing different modes of metering depending on the picture mode and conditions. I'm afraid I only used the shutter speed and Program however.

    One different attribute of the camera was a flippable exposure dial. On one side were the various icons of different programmed picture modes, from DEP to portrait to, well pretty much the ones available on the consumer digital cameras today. On the other side, were the set shutter speeds from B to 2000 and Program. This is shown in the illustration

    It takes a lithium 2CR5 battery, as do many of the early EOS film cameras. I'm sure they must eventually lose their charge, but I bought several when I started getting the early EOS cameras and so far I'm still on the first one after a couple of years.

    The camera was commonly offered with an unusual powered zoom lens, EF 35-80mm f/4~5.6 Power-Zoom, controlled by two buttons on the lens tube. This may also have been the first Canon lens to have the polycarbonate lens mount now found on the cheaper kit lenses and on the EF 50mm f/1.8 mark II. Mine came just as a body, and this lens is not found on eBay very often. In June of this year, one sold for US $33 with 8 bids. Another decidedly rare item in which rarity does not translate into valuable.

    Like its immediate predecessors, this has a prewind system. On loading the film all of the film is wound onto the take up reel and then is fed back into the film canister as you shoot up the roll. ONLY DX coded film can be used, otherwise the EI is set at ISO 25 (by some coincidence the ISO Kodachrome II/25).

    The pictures of the camera show it with a EF 50mm F/1.8 II, as it looks and with the built-in flash deployed.

    The smaller pictures below show the two sides of the control dial, first with the shutter priority/Program side up, and the second with the picture modes. That's a lot of picture modes and some are rather interesting, I suppose, For a run-down, mode-by-mode see the link given above, My personal favorite is the cocktail glass which simply means "indoors." By the way, Butkus (link) has a manual for this model, as he does for most EOS models. If you download, make the donation to support the cause.

  2. The pictures show some of the south and west of the campus of Southern Illinois University Carbondale, from which I am retired and for which I still have considerable respect, even after doing some duty as an Associate Dean watching the sausage being made.

    The first shot is another campus sculptures, of which I neglected to write down the artist's name, and the Modern style building in the background is imaginatively called Life Sciences II.

    The second shot is a shadow shot, to check out the metering, showing the louvers on the front of the Communications Building (are we noticing a pattern here?) --a tropical style of modernism shared with some African universities I have been at. SIUC is, after all, south of Richmond, VA and Louisville, KY.
  3. The school was built up from a small teacher's college after WWII, specifically aimed at serving the local community as well as urban Chicago (direct Amtrak link). It was in many ways a "people's university" as I joked the other day, but I was a little surprised to see the red flag flying over the Theater Department in the picture on the left (naturally).
    Then raise the scarlet standard high
    Beneath it's folds we'll live and die
    Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
    We'll keep the red flag flying here​
    Or something like that. [attn:((GB)) it's a joke!]
    On the right side, the picture may look a little like Zimbabwe, but it is actually the Neckers (Science) building. I think it used to be called the Science Building.

  4. In the third set of pictures taken with the EOS 700, we have on the left, not my much loved walkways around the Campus Lake, but a path through a small wooded area in the very center of campus. There is a long story about how and why it came to be, but not here.

    Finally, at the Campus Lake, a cattail, the only picture of these taken with the Tamron 90mm f/2,8 lens.
  5. That's all, Folks.
  6. Ah, the film was Fujicolor Superia 200. Also I don't remember exactly what I paid for it, but I think it was around US $30.
  7. Great post, JDM. I don't know much about the very early EOS cameras, even though I've been a user since 1994. As I stated in your T90 post, the A2 was my first EOS body but just for a little historical fun I recently picked up a near-mint 650 and find that I really enjoy using it too. It seems almost a bit archaic in comparison to even the A2, certainly in comparison to my much, much later 1v, but it still feels responsive and has a feeling of quality about it. Interestingly, the more I use it the more I really appreciate my newly acquired T90, which is really growing on me very quickly btw. The 650 looks like an AF version of the T90 but feels significantly lighter. I've never seen the 700 before but it is very interesting to note the similarities in all of the EOS bodies, particularly the earliest ones. Thanks for another excellent post!
  8. Interesting JDM - I never knew there was a 700. I had a 630 but prefered my T90s and really only made the EOS change when the 1N arrived in 1994.
  9. JDM, Well done. I think the history of cameras and photography is always interesting. As I recall the story that I have heard was that during the Korean War, our photographers were using Leicas and Contax German cameras. At some point in time, the latter two would become damaged and as a replacement those with Leicas purchased Nikons and those with the Contax replaced them with Canons. At that time the German lenses were still superior to the Japanese and there was compatibility with the lens for a Leica with the lens for the Nikon. Of course as time passed I guess the gap was narrowed in price and subsequently there came the demise of the German domination of the camera market. I still have a number of German cameras, to include a Leica IIIg with four lenses, as well as a Retina II along with many older Japanese cameras.
    Interesting story of Southern Illinois U and not dissimilar to the effect the GI Bill and the veterans had after WWII. I spent a number of years an Portland State University which was a creation from demands for education by veterans.
    I was a Nikon fan for sometime, but the advent of the DSLR Canon Rebel, brought me to Canon and now I have a 7D and 30D with seven lenses. Again very fine post
  10. JDM --Nice writeup and photos. You wouldn't happen to know a Jay McPherson at SIUC, would you? He's an entomologist there, and a really great guy.
  11. Sorry Mark, I can't place him. As archaeologists, we tended to know more people among the geologists, botanists, vertebrate zoologists, and others whose subject matter was found in archaeological sites. Insect remains are not unknown, sometimes can help enormously in determining seasonality and the like, but in my case no such luck.
  12. Well, Jay's a remarkable guy -- I have known him for well over 25 years. But, as a fellow entomologist, I know that we don't float in the archeology circles too much!
  13. After I read this, I had to try one, so I went to eBay and found one for $13. It should be arriving any day now.
    I'll let you know how it turns out.
  14. Gosh, Landrum, a real bargain! I think I had to pay half again that for my copy. :p
    I am always amazed at how cheaply the old EOS film cameras (with the decided exceptions such as the EOS 3 or the EOS 1 models) sell. Yet they are still great film backups for anyone shooting EOS lenses. I have some others which I will post on in due course. ;)
  15. A later addendum:
    As I realized, when I was shooting the kit lens for THIS camera on the EOS 10s (link) where I bought it, that the viewfinder display on the EOS 700 only shows that the AE is working and the green in focus dot.
    When using the EF 35-80mm PZ lens that it normally came with (described in the link above), there was no way whatsoever to tell what focal length or aperture was being used, nor was there anyway to tell what speed was involved unless you were in non-automatic mode and setting it on the manual side of the dial.
    It's a decent camera, but it may well be the closest to a "point-and-shoot" that the EOS line ever came.
  16. Still later,
    I realized that I had not mentioned in the report above that not only was the 35-80mm PZ lens a plastic mount (just like the mark II 50mm f/1.8), but the lens mount on the camera itself in this case is actually black plastic too, not the metal usual on every other Canon EOS camera that I have.
    I think this is still further confirmation of its intended "consumer" market placement. I repeat that it is a pleasant camera to shoot with. If the "picture modes" are used rather than the shutter speed side of the dial, it could have been used by my sainted mother to good effect.

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