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Canon EOS 3 35mm SLRs

4.68 star rating
                      4.68 / 5 (173 Reviews)
MSRP : $1499.00

  • Lens MountCanon EF
    Camera TypeSLR (Single Lens Reflex)
    Film Type35mm
    Battery TypeLithium Battery
    Focus TypeAutofocus • Manual Focus
    Focus LockWith Focus Lock
    Number of Focusing Points45
    Interchangeable LensesInterchangeable Lenses
    Shutter Speed30 - 1/8000 sec
    Max Flash Sync Speed1/200 sec
    ISO Range - Automatic SettingISO 25 - 5,000
    ISO Range - Manual SettingISO 6 - 6,400
    Frames Per Second4.3 fps
    Manual Shooting ModesProgram Shift • Aperture Priority • Shutter Priority • Fully Manual
    Light Metering ModesEvaluative Metering • Center Weighted • Spot Weighted
    Auto ExposureYes
    Bulb Shutter SpeedWith Bulb Shutter Speed
    Film Auto TransportLoading • Transport • Rewind
    Eye Relief20 mm
    Viewfinder Frame Coverage97 %
    Viewfinder Magnification0.72X
    Depth2.8 in.
    Height4.7 in.
    Width6.3 in.
    Weight27.52 oz.
    Product ID31112

Product Description

. The EOS-3 incorporates the world's first area AF system, a high precision focusing system, higher speed eye-control and improved high-speed focus tracking. Such technology combined with many of the features of the EOS- 1N and, of course compatibility with the extensive range of over 50 EF lenses and accessories, make the EOS 3 the perfect choice for advanced amateurs and professionals alike.

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Reviews 1 - 5 (173 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:4
Submitted by hjoseph7 a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: August 27, 2008

Strengths:    Weather sealing, Fast Auto focus, build, multi-spot metering, 45 point AF.

Weaknesses:    Exrtremely noisy, quick-trigger shutter.

Bottom Line:   
I purchased this camera back in 2005 but haven't had to use it much. Unfortunately around that time I also switched over to digital. In any case i wanted a good back-up film camera so I could shoot slides. This camera fit the bill it has allot of new features and is built like a tank. Most of the pictures taken with this camera were dead on. The Autofocus is fast actually faster than the AF on my Digital camera. One of the reasons why opted for another walk-around camera is the size of this camera, the noise and the quick-trigger shutter. Although I learned(the hard way) to use the tip of my index finger to trip the shutter instead of the entire front finger. Although some photographers swear by it, I wasn't too crazy about the eye-control feature, but I loved the multi-spot metering which helped me get some shots that I normally wouldn't get. All in all for a back up AF film camera, the EOS-3 is hard to beat.

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Duration Product Used:   11-20 years

Price Paid:    $550.00

Purchased At:   Adorama

Type of photography:   Sports

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by John F a Expert

Date Reviewed: March 4, 2007

Strengths:    Good Ergonomics, well built, and no exotic batteries.

Weaknesses:    Sealing against dirt and moisture, power switch a carryover from another era.

Bottom Line:   
I initially was interested in EOS-1n. Unfortunately, those are either very expensive, or badly used. I watched the prices on Ebay rise wildly as people tried to outbid each other on beaters and visibly broken cameras. I instead opted for an EOS-3 and managed to get one with some patience and careful bidding. Slightly over $200.00 resulted in me getting an EOS-3 in like new condition with a decent neckstrap, a good battery, but no lens, so I expended some additional funds for 2 average quality BRAND NEW lenses. This camera is a beautiful piece of equipment but definitely not sealed like its more expensive relatives. For planned rodeo photography later this year I wll probably add some external sealing around the film compartment door, as this is where I see the potential for real issues. The camera works just great, can't beat it for the price although I would recommend setting an entire evening aside for a thorough reading of the manual. The camera's powerful internal processor requires a thorough knowledge of the various settings. Its ability to sense movement of your eye needs some careful presetting, after which it works quite well.

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Duration Product Used:   21+ years

Price Paid:    $220.00

Purchased At:   Ebay

Similar Products Used:   Canon EOS 650.

Type of photography:   Outdoor

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by rascal38701 a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: June 30, 2005

Strengths:    Speed
Ease of use
Great compainion with the Canon 550EX
Excellent fill flash with the E-TTL system

Weaknesses:    PC socket is in an bad location. Have to spend the extra money for the "locking" PC cord for my Alien Bee flash. With a regular PC cord it keeps falling out.

Bottom Line:   
Great camera for someone who wants pro features and quality w/o paying the "pro" price. I purchased this camera along with the Canon 550EX flash. This setup has great speed, ease of use and mobility. I have let my boss use it to shoot a golf tournement on a bright sunny day and the EOS 3 w/ 550EX gave perfect results. He was very impressed, even for being a die hard Nikon owner. The E-TTL system is superb for outdoor fill flash. Makes those short timed photo shoots go so much smoother. I can keep my mind on the subject in hand and not what the camera will or will not do.

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Duration Product Used:   6-10 years

Price Paid:    $999.00

Purchased At:   B & H

Similar Products Used:   Canon Rebel G
Canon AE1 Program
Nikon D1H
Nikon F3HP
Nikon FM2

Type of photography:   Other

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by markophoto1 a Professional

Date Reviewed: February 20, 2005

Strengths:    Tracking AF, metering system, balance and ergonomics, fairly good build quality, part of a very large and versatile family of SLR bodies, lenses, and accessories. Lots of bang for the buck.

Weaknesses:    Viewfinder quality marginal, 45 point AF array could've been better used spread more broadly across the frame.

Bottom Line:   
Of all 35mm cameras I own this one has been with me the longest (only my Hasselblad and a rarely-used Sinar 4x5 have served me longer). As time has gone on I've come to prefer shooting manual-focus cameras and lenses to their auto-focus cousins, but there are times and projects where AF is de rigeur. Hence my EOS 3.

To me, the very soul of any SLR camera is its viewing system. This viewfinder is of moderate quality. Easy to focus, nearly full coverage, you can clearly see everything but you don't get quite the "feel" for the light on the subject as with superior cameras. In fairness to the EOS 3, no other 35mm SLR in its price class, excepting a lower-end Contax, outperforms it and many fail spectacularly in this regard. Pity. It's so fundamental, so crucial.

The build quality is excellent for a Canon product, a mark which I associate with many positive traits but definitely not build quality. It's solid but not heavy, well-balanced, with excellent ergonomic feel with or without a vertical grip mounted.

As for AF performance, I'm never truly satisfied with any camera's single-shot locked AF, they're just fooled too easily. The eye-control feature, while clever, is hit-and-miss. However, it's with tracking AF that this camera really earns its stars. With the exception of the 1v, no other camera I've ever used, Canon, Nikon, or otherwise, even comes close. And it's tracking AF I need when I need AF, as my eyes are still good enough to focus on stationary subjects. Really the camera's raison d'etre.

The metering system overall is good. The "spot" is a little bit widely-arrayed to my taste, but it still works adequately. The matrix-metering program, rarely-used but thoroughly tested, is actually excellent I must admit. And a big plus, Canon's "picket fence" meter is very easy to read in the viewfinder.

Like most modern AF SLRs, this one's controlled by wheels and modal buttons, something which I have a distaste for. They are laid out and labelled clearly and easy enough to use, primarily controlled by an index finger wheel by the LCD and a thumb wheel on the back. All apertures and shutter speeds can be varied in 1/3 stop increments. And a whole lot of other (less vital to me) features too numerous to mention.

Except for one of course. Mates well with a 550EX Speedlite.

All in all, this is a good, versatile camera. I've shot fashion and lifestyles work and events with this camera for over 5 years now, and who knows how many rolls...

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   11-20 years

Price Paid:    $900.00

Purchased At:   B&H

Similar Products Used:   Various Canon EOS cameras, including the 1v and 1n, A2 and A2E, a couple Elans, and various Rebels. Nikon F4 and N90. Contax RTS III and N.

Type of photography:   People

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Juancalop a Intermediate

Date Reviewed: January 20, 2005

Strengths:    Easy handling, robust and realible equipment, good look.

Weaknesses:    No resistance to water, see my comments.

Bottom Line:   
I was on a location n orthern Venezuela when a splash hitted me from the back, some small amount of water sprayed over the camera (that I tried to protect from the splash), so some dorps stayed fro seconds over the screen, wheel and shutter button. I did wiped off the water quickly and I was surprised when I realized that display was erratic and shutter start a malfunction behavior. Later on, shutter took a lot of time for finishing a single shoot and display wasn't clear Eventually the camera stoped working, even I spured some fresh water an wiped off all water. It happenned in the first day of a 9 days asignment. Hopefully my putfitter had an Elan II, so I borrowed from him and saved the trip.
My complaint is based in the so named capacity of the EOS3 against dust and water. Even not waterproof, it should be at least splashproof, otherwise, how this camera shall resist dust?. When I wrote to Canon about the matter, they just refred me to the hanbook to recall "no waterproof" camera: very poor consumer post-service...
Even I'm sticked to Canon (for some unknown reason that I can't put in clear thoughts) I was very dissapointed and unsatisfied.
On the other hand, I bought EOS3 just to come into the 21st century. I was shooting with an AE1P. Even I shooted for a cofee table book in 2000 with the manual camera, I needed to get some autofocus and profesionals features equipment, so after reading some reviews Idecided to stay in Canon (despiting Nikon advestisement made by ALL my friends and photographers in Venezuela) and decide EOS3 was the camera.
I had shooted some indoors churchs, museums, some outside feasts like carnivals and religious festivals under a heavy conditions and the only problem I found is the weight of the camera and flash over my neck. I think the camera is excelent, despinting my heavy learning curve.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6-10 years

Price Paid:    $899.00

Purchased At:   B&H

Type of photography:   People

Reviews 1 - 5 (173 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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Where to find EOS-3 part...

I have a 35mm EOS-3 in excellent shape with the exception of the rubber film rewind button which is getting stuck. I've taken the camera into my local repair shop and they said parts are unavailable for the camera so I'm SOL. It seems like such a basic part, it must be available somewhere! Here's ... Read More »

First Film SLR Canon EOS-3 Tips & Advice Sought

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DSLR shooter trying out Canon EOS-3 FILM Camera

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Bought a Canon Eos 3 yesterday, going back to shooting film for a while!

Hello everyone. I am new to this forum and site. I have been shooting digital for quite some time and just decided to purchase an E0S-3. I know many might think that shooting a film camera might be going backwards from digital, but there is something about shooting film I miss. Maybe it's just a ... Read More »

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