Quiet Canon EOS SLR?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by agphotography, Sep 18, 2011.

  1. agphotography

    agphotography Member

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    Hey guys, I'm curious if there are any EOS bodies that have come out over the years that are particularly quiet? Or QUIETER than say my 1N :wink:. I've been working on getting into street photography, and while I know this is the domain of the rangefinder, and I certainly wish that I still had mine but finances dictate otherwise presently. I'm just wondering if there are any other camera bodies worth investigating that wouldn't be too frightening for people on the street. My 1N draws a fair bit of attention unfortunately.
     
  2. Alan W

    Alan W Subscriber

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    I don't have too much experience with eos bodies except for the elan 7e that I've been using recently and the shutter is quiet compared to my nikon n80,and you can't even tell that it has advanced the film it's that fast and quiet.
     
  3. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    Hi,

    IME, the size and sound of a camera make little difference in whether or not people notice and/or get mad. If this is an issue, carrying yourself differently and approaching your subjects differently are the keys, not a new camera. The 1N is an outstanding street camera because of it's speed, it's AF, and it's durability. It would be hard to do a whole lot better IMO. If anything, go for a 1NRS, or the lower-end EOS camera with a pellicle mirror. (I forgot the model name.)

    I also feel on a conceptual level that it is not a bad thing if people notice you. We are not invisible observers in society. We are participants in it. So, be a part of the picture, not a voyeur. Some of my favorite street photography of all time has direct eye contact, and sometimes visible annoyance/surprise.
     
  4. CD55

    CD55 Member

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    I have an Elan 7E and it's quiet. I would assume the 7NE would be the same. I don't have any of the higher end bodies but I've been around them to know how loud they can be. I also have the Elan/100 that is quiet but you run into the trouble of the sticky shutter problem and command dial being broken.
     
  5. agphotography

    agphotography Member

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    I am perfectly happy with the 1N honestly, I just occasionally wish for something quieter to be a little more un-obtrustive. I have no intention of being sneaky or stealthy (Not possible when you're 6'3" and 270lbs haha). I stopped using the PB-E1 motor drive in favor of the BP-E1 battery grip as well.

    2F I appreciate your insight actually, thank you!
     
  6. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

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    I think the EOS 1N is the quiest camera I've ever held...
    But I suppose this is subjective. Being profoundly deaf probably doesn't help my recommendation! :smile:
    But in a tactile sense, it definitely is quiet: solid, business-like, gets it done then finishes. No complaints, and never had people eyeball me if it is bracketing rapidly.

    Methinks street photography has a lot of ambient noise and a camera like the 1N is unlikely to make an impression against it.
     
  7. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I'm pretty sure that the 7/7N/7E/whatever it is was touted as the quietest EOS camera. Other than that, the 1V has a personal function, if you have the software uplink, where you can delay the film advance and mirror return until after you release the shutter button, which can delay some of the noise at least.
     
  8. paulrocon

    paulrocon Member

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    EOS RT or the Elan 7NE. As an RT owner it's second only to a rangefinder in quietness and weight. Pair it with a set of Voigtlaender pancakes and its the closest you'll ever get to an SLR equaling a rangefinder setup.
     
  9. rthomas

    rthomas Subscriber

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    I'm a long-time Nikon user, but recently I've been using my wife's spare EOS 35mm body, a Rebel XSn, with a Pentax screw mount adapter and a Super-Takumar 55mm f/1.8*.

    Compared to my F3 and MD4 motor, this camera is very quiet. I can't say how it compares to other Canon EOS cameras, but my F3 is like a gun going off compared to this little camera. It's also very lightweight. Finally, the 35mm Rebels are super-inexpensive these days.

    *I suppose some of the reduction in noise has to do with the fact that both the focus and aperture are totally manual when using this lens.
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The 1N-RS is pretty quiet and kind of strange to hold. You just feel it sucking the film from the cartridge to the takeup spool without all the usual commotion.
     
  11. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    In having a quiet camera I use ear plugs!:laugh:

    Jeff
     
  12. agphotography

    agphotography Member

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    Hahaha glad we all have a sense of humor. I could care less if it is loud to me, I just don't want to be too distracting too my subjects. I think in the "ideal" street scenario where there are lots of people and ambient noise it won't be a problem at all. However, when I encounter someone alone then it becomes awkward or uncomfortable (for us both).

    I still have a lot of things to learn about street photography and building up my confidence is definitely one of them.

    Thanks for the tips guys, I had forgotten about the RT, that should be a pretty quiet camera!
     
  13. Oren Grad

    Oren Grad Subscriber

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    I've owned the 630, RT, original Elan, and 1v. The original Elan is way, way quieter than the 1/1N/1v. It's also very cheap these days, if you can find one in decent condition. However, if you're used to the responsiveness of a 1-series camera, the Elan will take some getting used to.

    The RT is a very interesting camera, and definitely not so obtrusive as a 1-series. I think the biggest drawback is that manual metering is primitive and awkward. And of course, if you're trying to follow things that are happening quickly, the AF isn't in the same league as later 1-series cameras.
     
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  15. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

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    Most slrs aren't quiet. I think that's why a lot of street shooters use range finders. Vivian Maier uses a twin lens reflex. Bresson uses a Leica.
     
  16. thanos

    thanos Member

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    People are known to practice street photography with anything from little Olympus Trips up to big noisy "sky-shuttering" Pentax 67s. Shutter noise is never a big issue because most of the time it's masked from ambient noise. I believe that you should concentrate more on lens, weight (a sharp 28-35 will do) and technique and less on shutter noise.
     
  17. Роберт

    Роберт Member

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    The EOS 30(E)/Elan 7(E) is the most quiet Canon EOS SLR camera. But compared to a Leica M7 still noisy and even more quiet is the C.V. Bessa III 667 RF medium format camera. You can hardly hear if a picture has been made :smile:

    Greetz,

    Роберт
     
  18. j-dogg

    j-dogg Subscriber

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    Another vote for the 7. I shot it and it's pretty damn quiet.
     
  19. hpulley

    hpulley Member

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    My old Kodak Instamatic 500 is dead quiet, sometimes I'm not sure I've taken the shot but it has a self cocking shutter so I don't make accidental double exposures like I can with my Yashicaflex. Both are leaf shutters so very quiet.

    The Elan 7 was supposed to be the quiestest EOS I thought. I have a 1NRS and even without mirror slap I find the shutter to be kind of noisy, metal curtains and all. The 1V's autofocus is second to none, the 1N isn't bad but my old 10S and 650 often fail especially in portrait orientation with the old BASIS sensors.

    Often it is simpler not to have to focus at all, my Kodak Instamatic has scale focus and for street that can be the quickest, just prefocus, preset the aperture and shutter speed and just shoot.

    Depending on the location I've done street photography with all the cameras above, Canon FTb or even the Mamiya RB67 which is HUGE (sometimes mistaken for an old movie camera due to the bellows focus) and sounds like a door slamming shut with the 6x7 mirror! The separate film advance and shutter cocking sounds a bit like a bolt action too.
     
  20. Dave Martiny

    Dave Martiny Member

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    Another vote for the Elan 7n. My EOS 3 sounds like a howitzer in comparison.
     
  21. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    Another vote for technique over equipment - don't sit there composing your shot like you would with a view camera on a tripod - if that's how you work, you'll end up drawing everyone's attention even if you're shooting with a pinhole with no mechanical parts whatever. I make a terrible street shooter because most of the time I do work with a view camera and I'm thinking about "Is that finger-tip still in the frame? What about that wire? Does that shrub look like it's growing out of someone's head?" and I take too long composing the background and then the subject notices I'm pointing a camera their way. When I practice quick and loose shooting, not worrying about the composition so much, my Contax G2 with its noisy auto-focus is absolutely invisible.
     
  22. dnjl

    dnjl Member

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    I had the Elan 7 (Eos 30) and I must agree with everyone here: it's a whispering camera.
     
  23. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    As I stated earlier, I don't think the volume of the shutter really matters. But since we are discussing the finer points of what is quiet and what is not, I think that there are only two EOS cameras worth talking about: The EOS RT (the model whose name escaped me in my earlier post) and the EOS 1N-RS. Nothing will be anywhere near as quiet as those two.

    The RT is older, and based on an amateur body. It is small, light, slow, and fragile in comparison to the 1N-RS. The 1N-RS is a brick of a professional camera that you could probably use as a hockey puck. It is quick and full featured, but large and heavy in comparison to the RT. There are times when I would want the RT and times when I would want the 1N-RS. I would generally prefer the RT for street photography, because it is light and small. But if I wanted close to the best auto focus and speed I could get, I would need the 1N-RS.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2011
  24. j37r

    j37r Member

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    My EOS5/A2E is very quiet as well. I remember reading somewhere on the net that fashion models did not approve of these cameras because they could not hear the shutter fire, so did not not know when to change pose.


    John:smile:
     
  25. agphotography

    agphotography Member

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    I think after all this I'll just continue on with my 1N and be happy. Though I think I'll add a 28mm to my lineup. But I do love the discussion and I appreciate every time someone offers an opinion.

    Someday I'd like to have a Contax G2 system (Or rather ideally a Leica, but that's way down the road)

    So the true answer is: Technique > Gear :wink:
     
  26. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    Except for the noise of the auto-focus on the G2, the only reason to get a Leica instead is snob factor. The optics are phenomenal, and everything is a fraction of the price of Leica gear. I took my G2 on vacation with me to Barcelona, along with the 21, 28, 45 and 90 lenses. The G2 and 21 paid for themselves on that trip in after-the-fact print sales. Try and find a 21mm lens with finder for the Leica M for under $1K :smile: That 21 has become one of my all-time favorite lenses and I'm normally a mild tele kind of guy.