CANON EOS FAQ Version 2.4
Date: November 1993

All original material is Copyright © 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995 Alvin Chia-Hua Shih and Robert M. Atkins.

1. Canon Publications:

Many of the EOS-related questions pertain to equipment. Canon produces a number of publications which are very useful to almost every EOS user. These publications provide first hand information from Canon and are free for the asking (for the time being anyway).


  1. What kinds of publications are available?
  2. Canon publishes some very useful brochures that include specifications for various components of the EOS system, as well as including helpful background information. (Thanks to Robert Groom for bringing these to my attention.)

    Canon EOS EF Lenses (PUB.C-E1-EFU 0692SZ32):
    Discusses the technology of the EF lenses (focusing motors, glass, etc.) and has descriptions for most of the current EF lenses. It also explains the principles of tilt and shift to give one an appreciation for the TS-E lenses. The best part is that it has a table in the back showing which lenses have which features, down to the type of motor used, focusing method, how many elements of FL or UD glass, closest focusing distance, angle of view, etc., etc. [Note: this may soon be replaced by a new publication on the EF Lenses which may (probably will) have a different publication number]

    Canon EOS Close-up System (PUB.C-E1-CU 0692SZ68.5):
    Explains basic concepts in macro photography and discusses the various macro options available, including the EF25 extension tube, close-up lenses, and using the FD-macro adaptor. It has an incredibly useful table at the back showing the magnifications of each lens when combined with the EF25, and each of the close-up lenses.

    Canon EOS Speedlite System (PUB.C-E1-SL 0692SZ68.5):
    Introduces the Canon Speedlite line for EOS cameras, and the various flash accessories available. Explains the difference between TTL and A-TTL, and the various combinations of shooting modes. Has useful introductions to general flash concepts such as: fill-in flash, exposure compensation, bounce flash, red-eye, 2nd curtain sync, etc.

    Canon TS-E Lenses (PUB.C-E1-TS-EA 1292SZ4.1):
    This brochure is quite thin compared to the others. It basically contains a few more examples of the types of effects that can be produced with a TS-E lens. [Note: out of print in 9/93. Maybe reprinted or replaced later]

    The brochures are full-colour and graphically illustrate some of the effects achievable. Brochures for all of the current EOS bodies are also available.

    Other publications:

    The Speedlite Reference Guide (Out of Print):
    This contains more detailed information than the "Speedlite System" brochure, but lacks colour photographs. I recommend having both. The Speedlite Reference Guide (which I will refer to as "SRG") deals more with the specifics of TTL and A-TTL flash photography. It includes very useful program graphs which clarify the inner workings of the Speedlite system. It also discusses Flash Exposure Lock on the T-90 (which is now discontinued). This is relatively heavy reading and should probably be read through a few times so that all the nuances of flash photography with the EOS cameras can be completely understood.

    The Art of Image (publication number unknown):
    This is a guide for professionals using the EOS 1. It includes detailed sections about metering modes, exposure compensation and "advanced" flash techniques as well as many pages of superb photographs. It is not free, and probably only available through Canon Professional Services. [I have also seen it advertised from photo book stores RMA].


    Lens Work (CT2-1101-000)
    A remarkable book. Contains details of every current (as of early 1993) EF series lens (including the 1200/5.6L). It doesn't include the 400/5.6L, the 50/1.4USM or the 20-35/3.5-4.5USM or any other lens introduced in or after 1993. Technical specs including "MTF" plots (see section 9.26) for all lenses and "L" series telephotos plus 1.4x and 2x converters. It also has pictures taken with each lens and a whole bunch of other stuff including: A bried history of Canon. Examples of professionals using EOS equipment, their comments and the lenses they use. A very good guide to optics including "tutorials" on aberations, depth of field, MTF plots, optics etc. About 200pages. Everything you ever wanted to know about EF lenses. Great book. Buy one. Available from Canon for $26 plus shipping and taxes. I was also given the number 9-01500 by Canon Technical Services in reference to this book, but the publication code given above is the one which is actually printed in it. I ordered mine via the 800 number below and it came in a couple of days.


  3. How do I order Canon publications?
  4. The publications, "Speedlite Reference Guide" and "The Canon EOS Speedlite System" are now OUT OF PRINT. For "The Canon EOS Close Up System", you can contact Chuck Westfall as detailed in section 1.4 below. Note that this applies ONLY to these three publications. For ALL other publications call the Canon Consumer Information Center at 800-828-4040. Avoid calling between 12 and 2 o'clock eastern time when they are 1/2 staffed for lunch. Canon Canada can be reached at 416-795-1111. (I don't know of an 800 number.) The toll free number in the UK is 0800 252 2233.[Phone numbers for other countries are welcome.]


  5. I need a manual for my Canon camera. How do I get one?
  6. Call your closest Canon office (see section 9.19) and ask them for one. There may be a fee on the order of $5 to $10 depending on the manual.


  7. I didn't manage to get all of the publications I wanted. The person on the phone didn't seem to understand.
  8. Most of the brochures were authored by Chuck Westfall, Technical Information Specialist at Canon U.S.A. If you can't get publications via "normal" channels, Chuck Westfall can handle (or at least redirect) requests. He can be reached at:

    Chuck Westfall
    Canon U.S.A., Inc.
    National Technical Department
    One Canon Plaza
    Lake Success, NY 11042

    He can also be contacted at: 71170.1056@CompuServe.COM. (Please try to route all questions through Bob Atkins ( so that he can record the answers in the FAQ!)


    Note: Keep trying at the 800 number given in 1.2. You may get a variety of Canon literature before they finally send you what you actually want, but if you are persistent enough you will eventually get what you wanted in the first place. It took me 3 tries to get the EOS close up guide from them. The first two attempts got me literature on the Rebel II, the EF-M and the FD close up guide (which is also quite interesting)!


[ Previous Section: Table of Contents | Next Section: Nomenclature ]