Autofocus[ edit ] The autofocus system in the T80 works in the same manner as the focus assist system built into the earlier AL A linear CCD is used to detect contrast in the focus area. When this area has the maximum contrast, the lens is in focus. This is a similar mechanism to that used in compact digital cameras. When a manual focus lens is used, the camera provides focus assistance in exactly the same manner as the AL
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When I responded enthusiastically and in the affirmative , James seemed to think I was being facetious. His reponse to my apparent excitement at shooting this glorious flop of a camera? His assumption was based firmly in reality. Even among the Canon-loyal, the Canon T80 does not have a good reputation. I was prepared to deal with this in trade for the chance to shoot it.
Just look at it, do SLRs get any more 80s-tastic? I knew the program-mode-only T80 was going to infuriate me at some level, but the novelty proved impossible to pass up. For Canon and the FD mount, these new lenses proved to be a leap to nowhere. Just two years later the world would be introduced to the functionally superior EOS cameras and their new EF autofocus mount.
It eschewed all mechanical connections between the camera body and lenses in favor of electronic ones, and forced dedicated FD users to completely rethink their brand loyalties. For fans of 80s-chic, the T80 has it all. The T-Series represented a dramatic shift in Canon ergonomics; manual controls were out, and both buttons and LCD screens were very, very in.
The entire series moved away from the traditional arrangement of shutter knob to the right of the prism, exposure compensation to the left, and advance and rewind in the industry-standard locations.
Instead, all four T-Series cameras feature automatic advance, automatic rewind, LCD displays on the top plate, and new body materials. By the standards of this new family of cameras, the Canon T80 was incredibly minimalist. The top plate boats a small LCD display, a sliding switch, and just four buttons. And one of those buttons is the shutter release. For the habitually fidgety, the T80 offers virtually nothing to play with.
Beyond the five controls on the top plate, the only other items on the body are the back release, rewind switch, and on-off switch. I appreciate a simple camera, but the T80 is truly sparse. Compared to earlier Canons, even plastic Canons like the A-1 , the T80 feels exceedingly retrograde. Where the A-1 could almost fool users into thinking its body was metal under thick lacquer, the T80 is an unabashed celebration of the synthetic.
The dark grey plastic has a faintly textured finish that is more Hyundai Excel center console than F-4 Phantom control stick. Despite its material faults, the Canon T80 is very comfortable in the hand, with well shaped grips and a thumb rest on the back plate.
Unlike an all-metal camera, the T80 is comfortable to shoot in cold weather; you can do so without freezing your hands. And when it gets that cold, the T80 still works — even through the haptic deadening of a fleece-lined winter glove I had no trouble using every control on the camera.
So, take that, F The peculiar asymmetrical lens follows the same material and ergonomic trends as the body. For fans of manual-focus FD lenses this autofocusing behemoth is the most alien part of the T For EOS users, it feels like some primordial beast that clawed its way out of the ooze, unfinished.
Virtually everything familiar about Canon lenses for three decades prior to the T80 was thrown away. There is no aperture ring. The focus ring is hidden. It boasts just three obvious controls; a selector switch for shooting modes which curiously switches between single shot, multi-shot, and manual focus , a switch for approximating focus distance, and a larger slider for zoom.
While the lens can be used in manual focus, the focus ring can only be accessed through a pair of narrow slots that double as a lens cap mount index.
Despite all the quirks, the T80 has a peculiar clarity of purpose. All of the controls have a common feel, and the layout is incredibly sensible.
The T80 can easily be operated single-handed, both thanks to its low weight and the minimalist controls. The viewfinder, in classic Canon fashion, is clear and bright. Unfortunately, that is just about where my praise for the Canon T80 ends. The bright viewfinder contains a double-split prism focusing aid, which looks more-or-less like a crosshair, and precisely four lights.
From top to bottom these lights are M, indicating manual mode; P, indicating program mode; a small diamond, indicating a mode warning; and a flash symbol, indicating that an attached flash is charged and ready to use. On this wholly automated camera there is no indication in the viewfinder of shutter speed or aperture value, which is just as well, as the shooter only has control of the former in just one of the five shooting modes. In most situations you are simply supposed to trust that the camera has achieved a correct exposure by whether or not the P in the viewfinder is flashing.
The four automated modes include Program, deep depth of field, shallow depth of field, and stop-action; which prioritizes higher shutter speeds. In effect, the T80 is point-and-shoot software running on SLR hardware. The autofocus system detects contrast in the focus area using a linear CCD, much like contemporary compact cameras. This system also serves as a focus aid for non-autofocus FD lenses on the T80, which is novel but not particularly helpful in practice.
Around midday the system works remarkably well. As the shadows lengthen at 3PM on a winter day, it comes unglued, forcing the shooter to find patches of bright light and high contrast to have any hope of the camera achieving focus. When the autofocus gets lost, it simply hunts up and down the full focus range until it finds some measure of acceptable contrast. This futile search is accompanied by a sad, electronic whine; like some sort of obsolete robot searching for meaning from the bottom of a scrap heap.
The lens itself is fairly unremarkable. In certain conditions it proved to be very punchy and contrasty, but the lack of control offered by the T80 made it a challenge to get exposures that made the most of its virtues. Even in the middle of Manhattan the whole system felt rather lost in the wilderness.
Compared to the much more sophisticated EOS system that debuted the following year, the Canon T80 feels utterly backwards. Where EOS felt polished from the beginning , apart from its clever ergonomics, the T80 feels unfinished. As a Canon aficionado, I feel my excitement at getting to shoot it was wholly justified. Perhaps even more annoyingly, I wanted to like the Canon T I had hoped that its reputation stemmed from snobby professionals looking down their nose at what was then new technology, or modern spoiled photographers dismissing it as slow, old tech.
I hoped that in practice the camera would be fun and easy to use. What I found instead was a gross misstep stuck between two long eras of great Canon cameras. Want to try the Canon T80?
Canon T80 - What is it worth?
The picture-taking mode can be selected with the pictographs on the external LCD panel. You can select to shot either in One Shot AF, Servo or reverting back to use manual focus on each of the AC lens, there is a setting for you to alter any of this shooting preference. Lenses for autofocusing with the T80 were called AC lenses. These lenses had the FD mount and signal transmission capability. The T80 has all the features available in the mulltimode T70 and more. A total of 5 programmed modes for different shooting situations. The modes are represented by instantly recognizable LCD "pictographs" Icons on the top panel.