1970's Canon

Canon EF

Canon EF
Release Year1973
Release Price~50,000 yen ($460)
Lens MountFD Mount

The Canon EF is a 35 mm SLR camera introduced by Canon in 1973. It has a Copal Square focal-plane shutter, with metal blinds running vertically which has mechanically-timed speeds from 1/2 to 1/1000 second, plus ‘B’, and electronically-controlled slow speeds from 1 to 30 seconds.

A silicon photocell provides full-aperture, center-weighted averaging TTL metering and it also has shutter-priority automatic exposure.

The Canon EF uses the FD-mount lenses, although FL lenses will work within their functional limits.

The Canon EF is similar in size and body style to the Canon F-1, which was introduced in 1971, but lacks an interchangeable focusing screen or viewfinder and has no facility for using a winder or motor drive. It was for many years a fairly high-priced rarity on the used-camera market.

Frequently referred to as the Black Beauty, the Canon EF incorporated many very good and thoughtful features, such as:

  • speeds from 1/1000 to 1/2 second even without batteries.
  • full exposure information in viewfinder.
  • concentric shutter release ; shutter speed dial, the latter overlapping the front edge of the camera, allowing easy change of shutter speed with one finger.
  • incorporates voltage control circuit, allowing use of modern 1.5V batteries without needing any exposure compensation (it was designed for a 1.3V PX625 mercury cell).
  • multiple exposure button.
  • exposure lock button for use with automatic exposure.
  • film can be advanced rapidly to first frame without having to release the shutter (3 successive strokes of the wind-on lever).
  • depth-of-field preview, stopped-down metering, and mirror lock.
  • vertical-travelling shutter allows flash sync at 1/125 sec.
  • silicon photocell allows metering at low light levels (EV 2 to EV 18).
  • PC flash terminal has spring-loaded cover; the terminal is therefore kept covered and clean when not in use, and the cover cannot be lost.
  • One weakness was that, if the power switch was left on, the light meter would continuously draw battery power, even with the lens cap in place.

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