Battery Performance

Our general method for battery testing is to reset the camera to its default settings and change the recording mode to the highest quality option. Then, we take 5 pictures without the flash and 2 pictures with the flash until the battery is dead. For more information on our battery test, please refer to our Testing Procedures page. For this test, we used the included 511A Lithium-Ion battery on the 20D. The 10D results come from our previous review with the use of the 511 Lithium-Ion battery. The batteries were fully drained before charging for the test.

   Number of shots taken in one battery charge
20D (BP-511A) 4,353
10D (BP-511) 1,727

Our battery test shows that the 20D is capable of a very impressive 4,353 shots in a single charge with the new BP-511A battery (supplied with the camera). In our earlier review of the 10D, we discovered it to be capable of 1,727 shots in a single charge. In the 20D manual, Canon suggests that if the BP-511 were used in the 20D, the battery life would drop by 25%. We think that along with the higher power output of the new battery, the speed and efficiency of the 20D had a large part in providing so many shots. Remember that these numbers do not represent casual shooting. We perform these battery tests in one sitting. In the 20D and 10D manuals, Canon rates the cameras with the following shooting capacity using the CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) criteria:

   No Flash  50% Flash
20D (BP-511A) 1000 700
10D (BP-511) 650 500

Anyway you look at it, both cameras have a very impressive battery life. However, if the supplied battery does not provide enough power, both cameras have optional battery grips. The 20D supports the new BG-E2, which can hold either two Lithium-Ion batteries or 6-AA batteries. The 10D supports the BG-ED3, which can hold two Lithium-Ion batteries. The grips are about $170 and the BP-511(A) goes for about $50.

Playback Features The Timing Tests


View All Comments

  • shuttleboi - Monday, November 15, 2004 - link

    What exactly is the point of these camera reviews? As I wrote several months ago, Anandtech is a gadget/hardware site, not a photography site. If you want to reach the photography community (like the rich folk who hang around, spending $1000 a month on lenses, and are ready to click on lots of advertisers' banners), you should do something novel. I suggested reviewing portable photo storage devices (e.g. the Epson P-2000, Archos AV-480, and Nikon ), but nobody listened to me. Suit yourself. As soon as you review any of these gadgets, you will find yourself on,, and other popular sites. But don't listen to me, I'm just a yuppie male, age 28-40, making a good salary; it's not like your advertisers care about my demographic or anything. Reply
  • Joony - Friday, November 12, 2004 - link

    I love my 20D, check out my photogallery,
  • Gatak - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    You may also want to look at the DCRAW - Digital Camera RAW. It is a open source program for reading RAW files from most camera RAW files.

    DCRAW vs. Canon D60:

    DCRAW vs. Canon 10D:

    DCRAW source:

    Windows binary:

  • stephencaston - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    Woodaddy, thanks for your comments. A Canon 50mm f/2.5 Macro lens was used for all the tests except on page 11 (where each picture lists the lens used beneath the thumbnail). I've also amended the other image quality pages to indicate the use of the 50mm. Sorry for this oversight. Reply
  • WooDaddy - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    I missed something critical here. Let me know if it was posted. What lens are you using? Since DSLRs have interchangable lenses, the image quality is directly related to the lens used. If not listed, you really want to say that for reference in you image quality tests.

    #8, #3 I've picked on Stephen when he first got started on his reviews. He's getting better and IMO he's doing a great job. Now mind you, dpreview is for photogs/techies with an emphasis on photogs. AT is the converse; techies/photogs. I would consider ease of use and image quality and control to be a focus in a review at dpreview. Technical features would be the focus at AT....

    Personally, I'm a photog more so than a techie camera guy. I'm doing quite well with my Nikon FE2 manual camera (with Acer 2740s film scanner) and Minolta G400 backup.
  • AtaStrumf - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    Wau, this thing makes some great pics! Way too expensive though. Reply
  • Gatak - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    #3 Yes dpreview has many good articles. But I think this is a good start anyway. Dpreview is very technical and doesn't really provide much explanation of technical stuff. This is something I think Anandtech could advance in =) It is possible to have technical depth and yet have good, easy to understand explanations. Reply
  • ProviaFan - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    #4 - that's why we have the term "prosumer". It's (the 20D) better than consumer, which would be the digital rebel, but it's not in the league of 1D Mark II (even though it has the same resolution, the speed and build quality don't compare) or 1Ds - which are professional. Reply
  • stephencaston - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    #4, The 20D is often referred to as a Prosumer camera. Among the reasons are price, 1.6x cropping factor, sealing, built-in flash, and _optional_ battery grip.

    The 20D is aimed at amateur photographers looking to replace/supplement their existing film SLR or for those looking to upgrade from a non-SLR camera. I've also heard of pros buying 10D and 20D bodies as backup cameras. I don't think it would be fair to the 1D line to call the 20D a professional camera. It is very nice, but not quite pro ;-)
  • sjprg - Thursday, November 11, 2004 - link

    Nice article, I use both a 10D and a 20D and would like to see some ACR tests added to the CPU processing tests besides the emphasis on games to assist us in selecting the best hardware for processing digital images. One of the test that could be used is the Tom Fors ACR calibrator beta 3.

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