Canon EOS Resources
SLR Cameras - Additional information on Canon EOS-50/50E / EOS Elan II/IIE / EOS-55-P

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CANON EOS 50(E) / Rebel Elan II(E) / EOS 55P QD (Quartz Date) film-based 135mm (36 x 24mm) format AF-SLR camera,
Approx. Product Cycle: 1995 ~ 2000

Model: EOS 50/50E (other markets outside Japan & North America), Rebel Elan II/Elan IIE (North American Market), EOS-55-P (Japanese domestic market), Marketed: September 1995
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Aong with the Cano EOS 5QD/A2(E), this was one of the longest serving EOS AF model around, lasted 5 years in its product cycle. Canon EOS-50E/Elan IIE QD was the second* EOS midrange body that launched after the successful debut of the second generation professional model of Canon EOS-1n (November, 1994) and Canon EOS-1n RS (March, 1995). It has caught many attention as it was also the second EOS body that incorporated the Eye-controlled Focus autofocus feature as the EOS-1n did not came with the much anticipated function.
Credit: Images courtesy of Melissa Bowen, from Shutterblade*com ® <> where the Company also has a website ( actively seeking for new/used photo equipment. Image copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer. * The entry level Canon EOS-888/5000 that debuted immediately after the EOS-1n was not an entirely universal model as it was more intended for the Asian market.

Although the EOS-50/50E/Elan IIE/55 QD still carries an "Elan" trade name in the US market, but to summarize the EOS-50/50E/Elan II/Elan IIE/55 QD was just another upgrade to the well received original EOS-100/Elan QD introduced back in 1991 was rather too conclusive as the camera was a generation apart in performing capabilities and specifications. Perhaps, the half a decade saw a lot of rapid changes in the development of SLR technologies, in particular where relates to autofocusing technology. Perhaps, one of the main difference in its features, other than many others was the incorporation of an Eye-Controlled Autofocusing (the ECF is not available with the basic EOS-50/Elan II models) which first seen used the Canon EOS-5/A2/A2E in this new update while the camera has also greatly enhanced section of flash photography where E-TTL flash metering with high speed FP sync is now possible - making the camera with exceptional additional value for users.



50Esidecover.jpg <<< --- Comparing the two generations of the Elan models side by side saw quite a radical change in their respective design and the layout of various controls.


The Canon EOS-50/50E/Elan II/IIE QD carries many basic features inherited from previous model of EOS-100/Elan plus many MORE... One of the major difference, other than camera functions is the designing concept of the camera body. As compared with its predecessor, the camera looks good and more sleek in its body contour and the layout of control is more trending towards back to older days of dials design instead of relying more to all-LCD control. The dual dials with a tiny LCD panel combines traditional SLR design with a modern touch in camera handling which is much faster, more accurate, versatile and friendlier to users to understand and setting various camera functions - in a way, it is not just another auto-everything SLR camera, the basic concept remains as a camera that you can control and grows with your interest and skill set while the advanced technology it embodies within has such a friendly interface. One of the most appealing area in the design of this camera is, it permits a few levels of skill sets to use the camera, it has fully automatic modes which let you capture images without any need of handling a SLR before while, the many embedded creative settings will provide you with a migration path to grow.

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CLICK open a new browser window for the Main Reference Map with information of the 11* custom functions. * only 10 functions are available with EOS 50E/Elan II model.

Both EOS 50E/Elan IIE QD and EOS 50/Elan II QD have a built-in flash, although the latter does not carries the Eye-Controlled Autofocusing feature. Both bodies has a dedicated flash, Canon Speedlite 380EX when it was introduced. The far advanced evaluative electronic flash system (E-TTL) provides a new level of flash control in in or outdoor flash photography. Unlike any of the earlier A-TTL or TTL flash introduced on many earlier EOS bodies, the EOS 50E/Elan IIE with a 380EX flash combination will provide just the right amount of light indoors or in daylight, and can be used at any shutter speed even up to its top shutter speed of 1/4000 sec. in the FP sync mode ! Further, a special memory function brings new control to flash photography with this camera. The advanced E-TTL flash exposure control is another worthy consideration even if the Canon EOS 50(E)/Elan II(E) was a product introduced way back during the mid '90.

Naturally, the most juicy section in this features-rich EOS AF-SLR is the Eye-controlled Autofocus function. Although many people have different opinions and/or experiences over practicality and functionality with this unique original Canon creation, but most would not argue that fact that this is a truly innovative breakthrough in SLR's camera handling. Simply by looking through the viewfinder and watch the focus follow your eye is a refreshing experience for many traditionalists. Whether the subject is left, right or centre, you can be quite sure of a sharp image that instantly snapped into focus.

Credit: The LCD panel is smaller than many other previous EOS bodies. The camera has a combination of conventional dial control with LCD display which is more user friendly. Image courtesy of "BTW7C" ® <> where the Company also has Ebay Store actively trading new/used photo equipment. Image copyright © 2003.

Theoretically, the concept is like making the camera becomes an extension of your eye as the technology is quite transparent - but more importantly, under most ideal circumstances, the ECF works. However, whatever the opinions are, strangely, the top of the range EOS bodies have never incorporated this innovation into their spec-sheet. Except in the case of the second tier, single-digit EOS AF-SLR models such as the earlier 1st generation Canon EOS-5/A2/A2E and the nest generation, current models of Canon EOS-3 (November 1998) and EOS-30/33/EOS-7 (or it was referred as Canon Elan 7E (October, 2000) in the North American market). So, as I said, the EOS-50E/Elan IIE presents a great value if you want to have a hand-on experience with this unique application. Well, as every human's eyes have different physical limitation and thus, the eye-contolled equipped models usually has an additional "CAL" setting on the Command dial for calibrating Eye-controlled Focus. With the EOS-50E/Elan IIE QD, calibrations for up to three users can be set. The calibration process is not very technical. After you have calibrated the camera, simply looking at the subject activates the nearest focusing point. Nothing could be easier, especially as the active focusing point will change as your eye follows a moving subject across the screen. Eye-controlled Autofocus is effective whether you are shooting horizontal or vertical format pictures. Anyway, as Canon offers two options of whether you want to have Eye-Controlled AF in the EOS-50 (Elan II) or 50E (Elan IIE), consumers still have a choice over decision and priorities (come to think of it, Canon is more professional than Microsoft in this aspect.. I don't need Powerpoint and Excel but I have to pay for both in the Microsoft's Office Suite, hehe .....).

Well, minus the Eye-Controlled Autofocus, the EOS-50E/Elan IIE QD autofocusing uses three half transparent AF sensors whihc outlined by rectangles that positioned across the centre of the screen. These are focusing points, The camera focuses on the subject covered by the active focusing point. The active focusing point can be selected manually on the camera by pressing the focusing point selector button and turning the main dial.

<<< ---- model:: Miss Jojo from Peking, China. Image courtesy of Mr. Tony Leong®. Image copyright© 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Canon Autofocus EF Lens Resources

The camera's metering and focusing systems uses a Canon proprietary system called 'AIM' - advanced Integrated Multipoint control. The principle is simple. The metering flows the focusing so that the main subject is always correctly exposed. If the subject to the left of the frame, that is where the meter reading is taken. Flash metering is linked to the system too, giving optimum exposure in dimmed lit indoors and out in a broad daylight.


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Select a right Focusing Mode for your photography

Focusing modes are selected by the Focus Dial that locates on the right hand side, at top panel of the camera. The EOS 50E/Elan IIE offers a basic One Shot AF or AI-Servo Focus with AI-Focus capability. Basically, the One Shot AF focuses on a subject, then locks the focus so that it does not change ( If the lens is unable to focus accurately, you will not be able to shoot). Predictive AF with Al Servo AF follows a moving subject, changing the focus if necessary. Al Focus, lets the camera choose your focusing mode and automatically switches between the two modes.

The interface is perfect for new SLR users to handle, If you are not sure which focusing mode to select, just leave decision to your camera. Al Focus mode will activate the focusing point covering the nearest part of the subject. One-shot AF is chosen initially, but this will automatically change to Predictive AF if the camera senses that the subject is moving. In the Predictive AF with Al Servo mode, the camera automatically tracks a moving subject. It also determines the speed and direction of movement, and calculates where the subject will be at the exact moment of exposure. This ensures accurate focus, even for fast-moving subjects. Naturally, you can also focus manually. Some users complaints about the EOS-50E/Elan IIE AF operation is noisier than some of the Rebels models, anyway, with a Canon USM EF-lense in place, it may be able to improve operational noice level. Further, USM lenses usually not just confined to quieter operation, they usually focus faster than non-USM or third party lenses as every USM lenses use an Ultrasonic Motor (USM) and provides fast, accurate, and near level of noiseless.

Choose your preferred Metering Mode

The EOS-50E/Elan IIE
QD model(s) offer three different metering modes for optimum exposure control when working in a metering range of between EV 1-20 (50mm lens, ISO 100) environment, good enough for most general photographic situations. The most convenient and fool-proof way is to select the Evaluative metering sym6zones.gif. It works by taking six different readings of each scene to provide optimum exposure recommendation. The camera also offers two alternatives, Partial metering and conventional Centre-Weighted Average metering to handle metering suggestion. The Partial metering sympartial.gif works by reading from just a small area of the image. This is a good method for comparing tricky lighting situations where you are not entirely confident the 6-zones evaluative metering works yileds perfect results. Centre-Weighted metering, on the other hand, takes an average reading of the whole scene, but with the emphasis on the central area. Generally, most people would choose the 6-zone evaluative metering as it is a more hassel-free method. Meter readings are first taken from six different areas of the scene and the built-in computer circuitry in the camera then compares these readings with a library of typical scenes, In this way, the camera is able to detect light or dark backgrounds, or other difficult situations, and adjust the exposure accordingly. In comparison, Partial metering puts you back with certain level of control by the photographer. It takes a reading from about 9.5% of the picture area. You can read from just the important area of the subject, ignoring the background. The technical breakthrough for the camera is, as compared with less positive operation on previous EOS models, readings can be taken from the centre of the frame, or linked to the active focusing point. The Centre-Weighted metering symCW.gif is a tried-and-tested method, as it reads from the entire image area, but is influenced most by the central subject area. It is the system used on many earlier cameras and is included for photographers familiar with the results it gives. Canon designed in such a way that CW metering is automatically activated once you turn the exposure selector to Metered Manual ("M") mode on the Command Dial.

A cell phone episode in a snowy scene near Brooklyn Bridge, NY.

: Image courtesy of Mr. Jeff. He has a personal photo gallery and occatioally trading some used equipment at his own Ebay Store. Image copyright © 2003 All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

In addition to various AUTO exposure control, the camera also provides a few methods where even if you are in AE operation, you still can fine-tune and/or overridding camera's decided exposure on your own. There is a ±2 stops Exposure Compensation in half stops increments. An AE Lock that gives you more control over the final exposure. It works by simply take the reading from the best area and press the AE Lock button to hold the value in the camera memory. You can then move the camera and recompose the image before taking the picture.

jojoty02tonyB.jpg jojoty02tonyA.jpg jojoty02tonyC.jpg
Although these may not be considered to be critical life n dealth shots..and very often using a digiatl camera or using very forgiving wide-exposure latitude negative film should be able to safeguard any technical errors that may arise, but still...

<<< ---- Image courtesy of Mr. Tony Leong®. Image copyright© 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

If the shots are of critical important to you, you can lso buy "insurance" for yourself by activating the camera's Automatic Exposure Bracketing control ("AEB"). Generally, EOS metering systems are extremely accurate in nearly all situtations. However, insome situations where subjects are loated in tricky lighting conditions, or where you only have one chance to handle an important shot; the camera's Auto Exposure Bracketing system will take three shots in quick succession, each with a slightly different exposure. You can choose the best picture after the film is processed. The bracketed exposures can be set to vary from the first exposure by up to 2 stops. Manual exposure compensation up to 2 stops is also possible.

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We have discussed how the respective autofocusing modes and metering system work in the Canon EOS-50E/Elan IIEQD. How to tae advantage of them ? Well, both are transparent, it is there serving you without you realizing their existence but most of all, all the settings on the Comman Dial have, one way or another makng use of both the technologies. The metering selection is a lever that locates next to the dial and the shooting modes are on the dial itself. * The AF mode selector is on the right hand side of the top panel.

Despite of all the mentioned sophistication associated with the EOS-50E/Elan IIE QD, it is quite a easy to use SLR. Canon has replicated the Rebel's control into the operation control where the user can have two levels in using the camera. If you are new to SLR photography, simply set the camera to the Green Zone and/or just use one of the four PIC (Programmed Image Control) modes, represented by icons of . If you have "graduated" from using the PIC modes, perhaps, you can elevated to another platform of using various more refined Exposure Control methods such as (Programmed AE), (Shutter Priority AE), (Aperture Priority AE), (Depth of Field AE) or (Metered manual) mode..

One way or the other, the Command Dial is designed to be located on the left top panel and leaving the AF selector to be positioned at the right top hand side instead. Probably, Canon assume most users will shoot with the camera set at the Green Zone and only may alter Focusing modes at most. The Command Dial is closely associated with th metering slection which comes in the form of lever that locates at the base of the Dial. So, all the essential exposure control modes are positioned at the left instead- although personally I would think an active photographr that often like delicate control may not find such arrangements the best option the camera can have - it reminds me with the similar scenario where the Olympus OM1(n) & OM2(n) as well as the Contax RTS series which defies all basic operation ease in positioning all controls at the left hand side too.





Full Auto mode "Green Zone" : The green square Full Auto mode puts the camera in control. It sets not only the optimum shutter speed and aperture, but also chooses the focusing and film advance modes, auto flash, and focusing point selection. You just point and shoot.   Portrait mode: Portraits are best shot with a wide lens aperture. This puts the background out-of-focus, making the subject stand out. The Portrait PIC mode automatically selects an aperture to give this effect.   Landscape mode: Most landscape pictures need to be taken with a small lens aperture. This gives overall depth-of-field - everything from the foreground to the background appears sharp.   Close-up mode: Close-up pictures need to be taken with a small lens aperture to give good depth-of-field. The Close-up mode handles this and other macro settings, leaving you to concentrate on the subject.   Sports mode: You need a fast shutter speed when photographing sports events and other action subjects. The Sports mode sets this, and also selects continuous film advance for sequence shots.

The "CF" position on the Command Dial enables you to change the Custom Function settings. There are 11 different functions, each with two or three settings for you to custom configure the camera how you want some of the camera function to perform. The "CAL" position on the EOS 50E Command dial is for calibrating Eye-controlled Focus. Calibrations for up to three users can be set.

<<< ---- Image from my copyright-free image collection. eofooTM.gif Malaysian Internet Resources

1. Film rewind: a) automatic silent rewind b) automatic high-speed rewind.
2. Film leader: a) rewind leader into cartridge b)leave film leader outside cartridge.
3. Film speed: a) set automatically by DX code b) set manually.
4. AE Lock operation and AF activation: a) AF operation with shutter button and AE Lock with AE Lock button b.i) AF operation with AE Look button and AE Look with shutter button b ii ) AF operation with shutter button and depth-of-field preview with AE Lock button,
5. Mirror lock-up and self-timer: a) normal operation b) pressing shutter button raises mirror 2 seconds before exposure.
6. Flash Synch Timing: a) First curtain flash syrichronization b) Second curtain synchronization (operative with wither builtin flash and/or capable Canon speedliite such as Canon 380EX).
7. AF-assist beam: a) enabled b) disabled
8. Partial metering and FE Lock linkage to focusing points: a) Link to center point b) Links to active point
9. Shutter speed setting: a) sets shutter speed automatically b) sets shutter speed to top sync speed of 1/125 second (for use with studio flash).
10. Focusing point flashing: a) enabled b) disabled
11. Eye-controlled depth-of-field preview: a) enabled b) disabled
* Custom function No. 11 is NOT available on EOS-50 / Elan II QD models)

Quick Control Dial: Not all EOS camera has a Quick Command Dial at the back (but it is a feature also found in original EOS-100 / Elan QD). It certainly adds complications and alter the camera control in these applicable cameras. The Quick Dial on camera back sets exposure compensation amount in AE modes, the aperture in the manual mode, and the flash exposure compensation amount for the built-in flash. Shown at left is a standard non-QD version of a EOS-50.
Multiple exposure is also possible. Up to 9 multiple exposures can be pre-set and shot one at a time, or in rapid succession. The technique can be used for 'ghost' images, titling, montages, and much more. Other than those functions mentined, unlike some of the lower end EOS models where you have a choice of selecting camera with built-in flash or don't, all the EOS 50/50E/Elan II/IIE and EOS-55 QD camera has a built-in retractable flash. In the full auto, portrait and close up modes the flash unit will automatically pop up and fire when the light is low. The flash can also be raised and fired in daylight for synchro-sunlight photography. Although the flash is small, but it is powerful enough for small portrait groups indoors and for fill-in flash effects outdoors. The automatic exposure is actually TTL-OTF (off-the-film), using 3-zone metering linked to the focusing point. Flash exposure compensation up to 2 stops is possible. Second-curtain and slow-synchronisation flash are also available.

One of the most appealing feature in the camera is the new E-TTL auto flash system which brings greater control and possibilities to this EOS body. The built-in flash is good enough for some specific applications at limited working distance, but if you wish to extend the working distance with more options, perhaps, you should consider using an external flash (Canon calls their as "Speedlites"). In particular for this camera, a new Speedlite 380EX has been specially developed for the EOS-50/50E / Elan II/IIE/EOS-55 QD to take full advantage of the E-TTL flash control it offers. The 380EX is not entirely a compact size model, the alternative 200EX is smaller but with a less powerful output and functions. Other than the most advance E-TTL which enables the camera to sync up to top shutter speed of 1/4000 sec rather than limiting to just 1/125 sec. which makes it a perfect tool for a wide varieties of fill -in flash applications. EOS-50/50E / Elan II/IIE/EOS-55 QD offers A-TTL and nrmal TTL flash control as well. Comparing to many other EOS bodies, which includes the earlier EOS-100/Elan, the flash sycn and E-TTL has greatly enhanced the camera handling where it requires artificial illuminations. The flash offers a range of attractive features outlined below when used with these cameras:



Guide number from 21 to 38 (ISO 100, metres)
Six-position auto zoom head for lenses from 24mm to 105mm
Tilting head (O degree to 90 degrees) for bounce flash
6-zone flash exposure metering linked to active focusing point
Partial metering FE Lock possible
Flash exposure compensation available
Synchronization at all shutter speeds
In low light, a slow shutter speed can be selected so that both the subject and the background appear correctly exposed
Auto flash exposure confirmation lamp
SE (Energy-Saving) mode
Test firing button provided

Vertical grip and Battery Pack: The BP-50 is both a power pack and a vertical grip for the EOS-50/50E / Elan II/IIE/EOS-55 QD. It uses four easily obtained size AA alkaline or rechargeable NiCd batteries, or a 2CR5 lithium battery The grip has its own shutter button with an On/Off switch.
High-capacity Power Pack: For extended use, the EOS-50/50E / Elan II/IIE/EOS-55 QD can be linked to a high capacity external power pack through the BP-50 battery pack. The power pack accepts four size-D alkaline or rechargeable NiCd batteries, capable of exposing up to 880 24exposure rolls of film. Naturally, one would believe such external pack also enables the camera to offer better cold-weather shooting capabilities.

Other relative accessories: Dioptric adjustment lens; Wide neck strap; Semi-hard case

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Naturally, the single most important factor in the EOS system is the lenses. The EF lense family has prqactically the most extensive collection among all major brands in types, prices and varieties. The EF lens group forms the backbone for all EOS AF SLRs.

EF lense group (201k Jpeg) during prevailing EOS 50/50E/Elan II/IIE
EF lense chart (231k Gif file) during prevailing EOS 50/50E/Elan II/IIE

Date imprint models available

Both the EOS 50/Elan II and EOS 50E/Elan IIE are available as QD date imprint versions. (The Japanss version, EOS-55 was believed to have the Databack as standard accessory). These have a built-in LCD quartz digital calendar and clock programmed to the year 2019. The date/time can be imprinted in the bottom right comer of the frame in the following formats: Year/Month/Day; Day/Hour/Minute; Month/Day/Year; Day/Month/Year. The imprint function can be turned off when not required.

The EOS-50/50E/Elan II/IIE/EOS-55
QD was eventually replaced three years later with an EOS-30/33 / EOS-7/7E / EOS-7 in October, 2000. As of 2003, this is still the current model.

| NEXT | Technical Specification for Canon EOS-50E / Elan IIE / EOS-55 QD
Main reference Map for Canon EOS-50E / Elan IIE / EOS-55 QD
Instruction Manual of the EOS-50E / Elan IIE / EOS-55 QD - EXTERNAL LINK
Other recommended web reference on this camera:

Flash Photography:- Part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 - Canon 540EZ site
Selective Canon TTL Flash Models:- 160E | 200E | 300EZ | 300TL | 420EZ | 430 EZ | 480EG | 540EZ | Macrolites | Other non-TTL Canon flash models
| Canon RS-60E3 Remote Switch | Canon RC-1 Remote Control | Canon RC-2 Remote Controller | Canon TC-80N3 Timer Remote Controller |

| Back to Main Index Page of EOS-1 Series |

| Message Board | Questions, issues & Answer(s)
| Message Board | for your Canon Optics in a shared environment
| Message Board | Specifically for Dispose or Looking for Canon Photographic equipment

About this photographic site.

Additional information on other EOS AF-SLR Models:
EOS-650 (1987.2) | EOS-620 (1987.5) | EOS-750QD (1988.10) | EOS-850QD (1988.10) | EOS-630QD (1989.4) | EOS-1 (1989.9) | EOS-RT (1989.10) | EOS-700QD (1990.3) | EOS-10S QD (1990.3) | Canon T-60 | EOS-1000F /RebelS QD (1990.9) | EOS-100 / Elan QD (1991.9) | Canon EF-M (1991.9) | EOS-5/A2E QD (1992.10) | EOS-1000FN /Rebel S II QD (1992.4) | EOS-500 / Rebel XS / KISS (1993.10) | EOS-1n (1994.9) | EOS-888/5000QD (1995.1) | EOS-1n RS (1995.3) | EOS-50/50E / Elan II(E) /EOS 55 (1995.9) | EOS -500N / Rebel G / KISS II (1996.9) | EOS-IX (1996.10) / EOS-IX Lite /IX-7 (1996.3) | EOS-3 (1998.11) | EOS-88/3000 (1999.3) | EOS-300 / Rebel 2000 QD / KISS III (1999.4) | EOS-1v (2000.3) | EOS-30 / EOS-7 / EOS Elan 7E (2000.10) | EOS-3000N /EOS-66 / Rebel XS-N (2002.2) | EOS-300V / Rebel Ti / KISS V (2002.9) | EOS 3000V / Rebel K2 / KISS Lite (2003.9)

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