Canon T90 (1986)
9.6
9.4
9.6

Canon T90 (1986)

Shutter Vertical-travel, focal-plane electronic shutter. With multi-program AE and preset aperture AE: B, 30, 20, 15, 10, 8, 6, 4, 3, 2, 1.5, 1, 0.7, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, 1/6, 1/8, 1/10, 1/15, 1/20, 1/30, 1/45, 1/60, 1/90, 1/125, 1/180, 1/250, 1/350, 1/500, 1/750, 1/1000, 1/1500, 1/2000, 1/3000, 1/4000 sec. X-sync at 1/250 sec. Second-curtain synchronization enabled. Built-in electronic self-timer (with blinking LCD). Shutter speeds settable in whole-or half-stop increments.
Viewfinder Fixed eye-level pentaprism. Laser Matte with microprism/new split combination rangefinder. Eight interchangeable focusing screens including standard Type E.
- Magnification 0.77x
- Coverage 94%
Power Four 1.5 V size-AA batteries (Ni-Cd batteries also compatible). Lithium BR-1225 or CR-1220 for memory backup power.
Size 153 x 121 x 69 mm
Weight 800 gr
2016-07-10

harryq

Features
10.0
Build
9.0
9.7
light measure, flash, build quality
Life time of small battery inside

The T90 is the most technologically advanced MF camera from Canon. Except for the autofocus, it is the later EOS 1 par. The wealth of features requires concentrated work and longer training. It is a brilliant camera for extreme shots and is very robust. But it should be used regularly or they will get problems.

2012-04-10

Jan_Rosenberg

Features
9.0
Build
9.5
9.2
Out of this world metering, gorgeous
Like an ageing movie star - she'll need care to keep her shining

Like Sigourney Weaver in 1986's "Aliens" - the T90 is tall, sexy, super tough and can empty a whole mag in 9 seconds - not to mention being intelligent AND caring. Yes, the T90 is still an enormously enjoyable "bitch" of a camera - but you have to love her to keep her fighting - she's no spring chicken now...

THE GOOD:

+ Spot metering so accurate and pleasurable to use you can "paint" the exposure of your scene as if it were a histogram. Get those shadowy areas or highlights exactly as you want them.

+A body that looks and feels like it was forged in the fires of Mount Doom - smooth and muscular (only 1D Canons compare - even a 5D feels like a toy compared to a T90).

+ Not just spot but MULTI-spot metering.

Body handles well with all lenses - old and new - long and short.

+ Viewfinder and LCD can be lit in darkness.

4000th/sec shutter.

+ Safety Shift - awesome feature - your aperture or shutter priority preference will be automatically shifted to within the camera's range for a given lighting situation. 4000th/sec will go to 1000th/sec if your aperture can't open enough.

+ Kick ass flash options.

+ Variable Program AE - Program mode but you can favour shutter or aperture to different degrees.

+ Takes old FD lenses whose optical quality is often way better than later FDn or EF lenses.

THE BAD:

- Practically too many paths to take a picture - you can often stop to think "now how shall I....?"

- Potentially sticky shutter (washer can melt or magnets closed for too long)

- Needs regular exercise to keep it going (not necessarily a bad thing)

- Base can warp if don't loosen it from a tripod before changing batteries.

- Control dial can get dusty and unresponsive - just blow into it regularly.

- No exposure lock on centre-weighted metering mode (why?).

- No correct exposure information when using manual non-stopped down mode (yet there is on stopped down mode - why?)

- Heavy complex internals - even without the 4 batteries - how often do you need 4.5fps?

- Yes, a loud gun-like shutter, those sleeping beasts are always startled.

- Some UI confusions, live and pre-set spot metering indicators becoming confused (as they are the same colour).

FINAL WORD:

Think long and hard if you want to go into the FD world - the later 1D series and the EOS 3 are T90s but take all today's EF lenses as well as manual Zeiss's etc. But goddamn I love my T90!

2011-02-27

tocopixel

Features
10.0
Build
9.5
9.8
Every inch a classic, and after more than 20 years, this camera is still hard beat
Internal Battery must be replaced every 5 years.

The Canon T-90 was the last model that uses FD-mount prior to the shift to the autofocus EF EOS system. It hardly lasted a year since its inception but what an impact it has created on the design of future SLR. Every inch a classic, despite after more than 15 years, this camera is still hard to replicate even by today's standard. It was also widely acclaimed as one of the true Classic camera of modern times. The T-90 influenced Canon's future designs of cameras as a whole more than any other camera within their line-up. It was a great camera by any standard, featuring some revolutionary innovations as well as practical and very functional human engineering factors in its design. Thus, five years after the Canon flagship model, the Canon New F-1 was launched (1981), the T90 became the bridging model between the first full AF model, the Canon 650, that was brought out by Canon barely a year later in March, 1987 and the older manual focus Canons. The life span of the Canon T-90 was the shortest and can also be considered the last of the true professional FD-based manual focus SLR camera from Canon** but it is also the most sophisticated automatic exposure 35mm SLR that Canon has ever produced. It was first marketed in 1978 before being discontinued in 1982 while the T90 has barely a year to survive due to the market changes to the AF arena where the Minolta Maxxam 7000 was rocking the whole photographic world by storm and Canon has to make the most drastic decision in its camera history by dropping the famed FD breech-lock mount and replaced it with the new EF mount for the new EOS series AF cameras).

** (An FD Canon, the T60 was subcontracted 1990 - but had little relationship to the T series)

The Canon T90's birth was a little untimely and its full potential was never truly realized - one tends to remember the A1 more clearly than the T90 when associating Canon with the multimode automatic cameras, even though the former fares poorly in comparison with the latter in all aspects. This is primarily due to the fact the T90 has never had the longer life cycle that A1 enjoyed.

The Canon T90's appearance is designed by German industrial designer Luigi Colani, and was the third model from the T series, after the T50 in 1983 and the T70 in 1984 (In total, there were five T-series models including the T80, which was an autofocus camera that was launched in 1985. But the T90 has cast more influences to Canon's future designs of cameras as a whole than any other camera within their line-up. It was a great camera by any standard, featuring some revolutionary innovations as well as practical and very functional human engineering factors in its design. Thus, five years after the Canon flagship model, the Canon New F-1 was launched (1981), the T90 became the bridging model between the first full AF model, the Canon 650, that was brought out by Canon barely a year later in March, 1987 and the older manual focus Canons. The life span of the Canon T90 was the shortest and can also be considered the last of 's e r i o u s' FD-based manual focus SLR camera from Canon (The Canon T60 was launched in 1990) - but it is also the most sophisticated automatic exposure 35mm SLR that Canon has ever produced prior to the new EF mounted EOS AF SLR cameras, and was also affectionately nicknamed as the 'Tank" in Japan.

2010-11-25

tomdutchman

Features
10.0
Build
10.0
10
Great handling, great features, multi spot, robust, its a bargain, the TANK
Discontinued FD line, Short lived, no Canon support,



This is the best FD Canon camera I have ever handled. Its designed by the German industrial designer Luigi Colani and introduced in 1986.

This camera is packed with features like, Vertical travel metal focal plane shutter, Sync speed 1/250th, TTL flash compatible, Built in winder, 4,5 frames per second, Three selectable metering patterns: Center-weighted average metering, partial area metering, and spot area metering, Also very cool: multi-spot metering, shutter speeds from 1/4000 to 30 sec., Exposure compensation etc...

holding the T90 is like holding a camera that you have known for years. its feels comfortable due to the rounded design from mister Colani. It was THE camera setting the design standard for the following EOS series and actually all the modern SLRs.

Having played with the T80 and T70 its a joy to use and easy to switch. Lots of possibilities, lots of modes but a very easy interface. After reading the manual it didn’t take long to feel at home and find the settings one needs in a few secs.

the viewfinder is nice, big and clear showing the shutter speed, aperture, manual or flash indicator, exposure compensation, spott-metering settings, last 9 frames, overexposure warning without disturbing while taking a picture . The digital display on top of the righthand side is very simple to read, and states the different settings an info you need to know. the display even is backlit, like the viewfinder, if wanted to use at photo sessions in the dark.

the Multi-spot metering is an absolute great tool to use, an still not a standard on DSLR.

Also the flash TTL sinking makes this camera a good companion for backlit or bad lit environments. I normally avoid using flash, cause i like the warm “real? light in photo. combining the T90 with the 300TL, I was able to use the flash to support the available light (flashing against the ceiling) and make nice warm pictures.

I really enjoy using this camera. It feels great, it works great and still is a camera that can keep up with most new modern DSLR’s.

This combined with al the great FD lenses out there for okay money, this is a great camera to buy and shoot film with.

do I mis the autofocus?........ no....... its something that I want to manage myself.

Do I feel sad that maybe one day i might have a Canon or Nikon DSLR and I won’t be able to use al my canon FD lenses? Yes a bit, but thats a choice I made a couple of years ago.

This is the FD weakness and also its strenght. because the FD lenses are not compatible with the newer EOS system, really great lenses are available for a couple of euro's. Well not the Canon FD L series, they still cost a few hundert euro's depending on the lens, but compared to a couple of thousand for the L series in EF, thats still a bargain!

Seeing the new Canon DSLR’s and EF lenses makes me want to have them. Looking at the prices of the comparable EF lenses for my FD lenses, makes me want to weep. ;o)

I will stick to my FD gear for now and enjoy shooting the good old film-roll. and rather buy a good film and Dia scanner to get the good shots in to digital.

Of course buying a camera this old (yes 1986 is a looong time ago) is a risk, especially with al the electronic in it. but I would do it again and hope that me and al the other T90 users will have years and years to come without any dreaded EEEE and HELPS ;o)

Getting one is not to hard, the prices do vary from 150 euro for a just a body to 300 Euro for a new old stock still in the box.

Check the site http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/classics/canont90/index.htm for more input on FD cameras and equipment.

2010-01-20

JimK

Features
9.5
Build
9.0
9.3
The ultimate manual focus 35mm film camera. Bar none...
Mirror lockup, pc sync socket, and leader out film rewind must be hacked. Loud motor

My first Canon was a new FTb QL I bought about 1971. Since that time, I have owned several F1 models (still own my last F1 N), and I purchased a number of FD lenses over the years. When the T90 was introduced, I saved my coins, and bought one. It was a masterpiece of engineering that was light years ahead of anything I worked with before.

I loved that camera, and it was a constant companion until it was stolen (along with a full set of diving gear) from my vehicle while on vacation two years later.

I still owned an extensive F1 kit, and EOS hit the market, so I opted to sunset new FD mount purchases, and buy EOS gear. I'm happy with that choice, as decades later, I still owned my F1 N anvil and several key FD lenses, and also own a fairly extensive set of EOS film and digital gear for earning an income.

A couple of years ago though, I saw the T90 offered at KEH for a nice price, and I bought one, as well as a 300TL flash unit. When that camera arrived, and I unpacked it, and held it in my hand.... it felt like the world was alright again. No kidding. I use that camera more often than any other film camera, including my EOS film bodies.

Between it's feature set, and the way you make your choices, there is something about it that makes it a photographers ultimate tool kit above all, and a modern marvel of point and shoot second.

I added the various mods to fill in the few blanks as shipped, and I have been fortunate to not have been visited by any of the electrical errors common to the net forums. As a backup, I bought a second T90 body cheap, but I have been using my primary T90 to shoot at least one roll of film every two weeks for a couple of years now without issue.

Compared to the F1 N, there is no comparison. The F1 IS an anvil, and you really can't destroy it (in a pinch, you can drive tent pegs into permafrost with an F1 without hurting it), but even with the AE finder installed, there is no comparison to the feature set of the T90. The bare F1 without motor drive weighs more than the T90, and the F1 with the AE Motor drive FN and it's 12 AA batteries (that is correct, 12AA batteries), the T90 is less than half the weight, is faster, and even though the T90 is rather loud, it is quiet compared to an F1 with a drive.

The F1 is an icon in the 35mm world that can stop bullets, and will likely last until the end of time, and every FD fan should own one at some point. The T90, however, offers the build quality mindset of the F1 at the dawn of the polycarbonate age, while sporting so many advanced features that aside from AF, it can team up with any number of bargain priced FD uber optics today, 25 years after its production ended, and play in the same sandbox that all of the latest wonder cameras play in, and never have to offer an excuse for not being able to keep up.

I love it.

Jim K.

2010-01-04

TonyL

Features
9.0
Build
8.5
8.8
Great styling, superb metering and finder.
Poly body a bit of a turn off, drive noisy by todays' standards

I must admit to buying the T90 on a whim, lots of people rave about it. Obviously a pre cursor to the EOS styling (no bad thing) the 90 looks great even today. I still prefer the F1 for most uses, but the T90 is very useful for action shots, I recently used the camera for historic motor racing, where it excelled. The metering handled the crazy lighting as well as my Nikon F5, which is high praise. You wouldn't want to use the drive in a church though.

2009-10-27

Guest

Features
10.0
Build
10.0
10
most versatile manual camera made, fantastic metering and flash capabilities
needs to be used or have a manual handy, right strap lug

The T90 was obviously the test bed Canon used to design the EOS1. It has the best system of metering available on a manual camera, and the flash options are absolutely top shelf. The camera is also much more durable than it looks, although the right strap lug is a major design fault. I enjoy using the camera, but my heart still yearns for the F-1N. If you are using flash, or in a tricky light situation, it can produce better simpler results than just about anything else made. I'm glad to have one available for those times it will be the best tool for the job.

2009-07-31

Guest

Features
10.0
Build
10.0
10
The best body for commercial pros that use flash
Looked plastic and

Since I was an Advertising photographer that shot in an editorial style, and didn't have to look like a pro (which helped me capture/not intimidate), this was the perfect body to have, I eventually had three of them. The previous comments make the points, but the 1/250 flash syncro was the best! I "borrowed" the new EOS (Canon Pro Services Member) for some shoots (Summerlin/Vegas) but it was clear that this for cost/benefit, was not where I wanted to go (and the lenses were not good, compared to FD). Canon made a mistake with the EOS line, and lost me as a Pro Camera Buyer (I bought a Rebel xti for my wife). I do use that Rebel, but use Sigma Lenses with it. I'll wait for the 5D to drop in price....I have the time.

2009-07-26

Guest

Features
9.5
Build
9.0
9.3
Probably the best Canon body in terms of functionality.
Not really a manual camera - the F1N is better

Probably the best handling Canon camera ever made. It is a great compromise between the complex handling of the EOS film and digital bodies and the more limited or slower handling of the F and A series bodies. The multi-spot metering system, TTL flash and 4.5 fps motor are highlights of the body. I have two of them and they are still performing well but the body does not like being stored without being used and the LCD has been known to leak. Build quality- despite a plastic feel is very high. Overall probably the FD series body I use the most.

2009-07-24

Guest

Features
9.5
Build
10.0
9.7
Great feel, super metering, tough as nails, feature rich
No mirror lock up, motor drive a bit too loud

This is the finest manual focus camera Canon, or any one else, ever made. Peroid. Despite lacking a few features like MLU and a PC connection, the operational smoothness, precision and sheer physcial toughness makes this camera THE one to get. It Japan, it was dubbed "the tank" for it's toughness. With it's modern, molded design, the camera is wonderful to hold and all the features are intuitive and well placed. It uses standard AA batteries. The camera is so good...I bought two!

2009-07-21

Guest

Features
9.0
Build
8.5
8.8
Lots of feature, great ergonomics, good build quality.
Prone to electronic failures.

Electronics failures (shutter magnets and mirror-release-magnets related problems) quite common. I personally really miss MLU and the leader-out-feature.
Apart from that a great camera. Lots of usefull features (that means you really have to read the manual thoroughly!) The multi-spot-metering especially is a great help. Its ergonomics are unsurpassed at least in 80`s and 90`s cameras. Needs 4 AA batteries - no hard to find exotic lithium crap.
In short: The only EOS you can attach FD lenses to ;-)

2009-04-29

Guest

Features
10.0
Build
10.0
10
Everything about it. Flash system combined with Canon 300TL is Awesome!!!
None.

Outstanding camera. Best I've ever used. Packed with features. Easy to use, great feel, built in winder, multi-spot metering, Sync speed 1/250th and many more...
Too many to list. Check for yourself http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/classics/canont90/index.htm

Outstanding camera for flash photgraphy when used with Canon 300TL flash.
Do your research. This is a GREAT camera. Give it a try. Buy one on eBay.com for $150 and if you don't like it you can resell it for what you paid for it on eBay.

You need to spend crazy money to get a Canon digital equivalent(Canon 5D) to get same level of features and functionality. Even the 5D doesn't have the multi-spot metering.

Canon did a great job with this camera.
I'm not ready to spend $2,800 for a digital body and another $9,000 to replace all my Canon FD lens and flash for the Canon EOS/EF system . That can buy alot of Kodak Professional film. So for now I'm just going to keep using film for my best work.