Canon EOS 1Ds vs Sony a850

This is a full comparison between the cameras Canon EOS 1Ds and Sony a850. We compare them by looking at the categories you see below.

Manufacturing

Canon EOS 1Ds is manufacturered by Canon but Sony a850 is from Sony. Both Canon and Sony are well known brands though.

Canon EOS 1Ds were released 2002 and Sony a850 was released 2009. That is a 7 years difference. In tech, this period can be of interest since technology is always improving, etc.

Camera Released
Canon EOS 1Ds 2002
Sony a850 2009

Type of camera

Both these cameras are DSLR cameras. No difference there.

Sensors / crop factor

These cameras have different sensors. Canon EOS 1Ds has a "Canon Full Frame"-sensor while Sony a850 has a "Sony Full Frame"-sensor, and their difference in sensors will also affect the crop factor and experience focal length. See the table below.

Camera Focal length, 50mm f/1.8 **
Canon EOS 1Ds 50 mm
Full-frame sensor
No crop factor/focal length multiplier
Sony a850 50 mm
Full-frame sensor
No crop factor/focal length multiplier

** Experienced focal length when using a lens such as a common "50mm f/1.8"

Learn more about crop factor and focal length multiplier here:
Camera selection can affect the focal length (Canon)
Camera selection can affect the focal length (Sony)

Resolution

Canon EOS 1Ds has a 11 MP (Megapixels) resolution while Sony a850 has 25 MP. If we break down this in more detail this is the data behind the numbers:

Camera Megapixels
Canon EOS 1Ds 11 MP
10989056 pixels
4064 x 2704
Sony a850 25 MP
24385536 pixels
6048 x 4032

Sony a850 has a 122 % larger resolution than Canon EOS 1Ds. This could give you more details in the picture but also a possibility to crop more in the pictures, afterward while editing the pictures, if needed that is.

ISO range

Sony a850 has a larger ISO-range than Canon EOS 1Ds. Sony a850 has an ISO range that stretches from 200 to 3200 while Canon EOS 1Ds has 50 to 1250.

Camera ISO Range
Canon EOS 1Ds 50-1250
Sony a850 200-3200

Autofocus and lens compatibility

Both of these cameras have a built-in autofocus motor. Some lenses, that support autofocus, do not have an autofocus motor of their own but this won't cause any problems with these two cameras.

Here is a complete overview of which lenses work with each camera:
Lens compatibility chart for Canon EOS 1Ds
Lens compatibility chart for Sony a850

Pictures per second

Depending on what you are shooting the FPS, or frames/pictures per second, can definitely be of interest. Canon EOS 1Ds can shoot up to 3 pictures per seconds and Sony a850 can shoot up to 3 pictures per seconds.

Camera FPS (Frames per second)
Canon EOS 1Ds 3
Sony a850 3

Ability to record movies

It is becoming more and more popular to record movies with digital cameras.

Though, neither Canon EOS 1Ds or Sony a850 can shoot movies so if that is a functionality that you are really looking for you should look elsewhere.

Weight

The weight of the camera can be an extremely important factor, especially if the camera is about to be used, or carried around, for several hours at a time.

Canon EOS 1Ds weighs 1585 gr (equal to 3.49 lb) which is 77% heavier than Sony a850 and its 895 gr (or 1.97 lb).

Camera Weight
Canon EOS 1Ds 1585 gr
3.49 lb
Sony a850 895 gr
1.97 lb

Canon EOS 1Ds vs Sony a850 Specs

Below you will find the complete and detailed technical specs for both Canon EOS 1Ds and Sony a850, next to each other. Each category of data is a link to an article covering the subject, giving you a deeper understanding so you can better understand the strengths and weaknesses of the two camera models.

Product
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Name Canon EOS 1Ds Sony a850
Manufacturer Canon Sony
Release Date and Price
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Release Year 2002 2009
Release Date 2002-09-24 2009-08-27
MSRP 7499 USD 1999 USD
Buy it today
Camera Type
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Camera Type DSLR DSLR
Sensor
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Sensor Size Full Frame (approx 36 x 24 mm) Full Frame (approx 36 x 24 mm)
Sensor Type CMOS CMOS
Resolution 4064 x 2704 pixels 6048 x 4032 pixels
Megapixels 11 MP 25 MP
Image Processor DIGIC Bionz
Image
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
ISO Range 50 - 1250 200 - 3200
White Balance Presets 8 7
Custom White Balance Yes Yes
Image Stabilization No Yes
(Sensor-Shift)
Image Stabilization CIPA Rating 0 stops 0 stops
Uncompressed format RAW RAW
Optics & Focus
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Autofocus Motor Yes Yes
Autofocus Phase Detect
Multi Area
Selective Single Point
Single
Continuous
Phase Detect
Multi Area
Selective Single Point
Single
Continuous
Focus Points 45 9
Lens Mount Canon EF

See Compatible Lenses
Sony A

See Compatible Lenses
Focal Length Multiplier Full frame
No multiplier
Example:
24 mm remains 24 mm
50 mm remains 50 mm
100 mm remains 100 mm
200 mm remains 200 mm
Full frame
No multiplier
Example:
24 mm remains 24 mm
50 mm remains 50 mm
100 mm remains 100 mm
200 mm remains 200 mm
Screen & Viewfinder
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Articulated LCD Fixed Fixed
Screen size 2 3
Screen dots 120000 921600
Touch screen No No
Screen type N/A TFT Xtra Fine color LCD
Live view No No
Viewfinder Type Optical (pentaprism) Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder Coverage 100% 98%
Viewfinder Magnification 0.7 0.74
Viewfinder Resolution N/A N/A
Photography features
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Frames per second 3 fps 3 fps
Minimum Shutter Speed 30 seconds 30 seconds
Maximum Shutter Speed 1/8000 seconds 1/8000 seconds
Built-in Flash No No
Built-in Flash Range N/A N/A
External Flash Yes Yes
Self-Timer Yes Yes
Time-lapse Yes No
Metering modes Multi
Center Weighted
Spot
Partial
Multi
Center Weighted
Spot
Exposure Compensation +/- 3 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps) +/- 3 (at 1/3 EV steps)
Videography features
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Video recording No No
Video format N/A N/A
Video resolution N/A N/A
Built-in Microphone No No
Built-in Speakers No No
Storage
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Memory Card Compact Flash
Compact Flash
Memory Stick Pro Duo
Connectivity
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
HDMI Output No Yes
Microphone Port No No
Headphone Port No No
Wireless No No
Remote Control Yes (N3 connector, Remote switch RS-60 E3)
Yes (Wired or Wireless (Optional))
GPS No No
Body & Dimensions
Canon EOS 1Ds
Sony a850
Enviromentally sealed Yes No
Battery Battery Pack Battery Pack
Battery Details Ni-MH Pack NP-E3
Lithium-Ion NP-FM500H rechargeable battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA) N/A 880 shots
Width 156 mm 156 mm
Height 158 mm 117 mm
Depth 80 mm 82 mm
Weight 1585 gram 895 gram