Super Bowl XLIV and the new Canon Mark IV

While shooting Super Bowl XLIV in Miami on assignment for United Press International, I had the opportunity to pull the trigger of the new Canon EOS Mark IV.  The digital SLR is Canon’s newest flagship camera aimed at the professional photojournalist and sports photographers.

Winning Saints QB Drew Brees hoists his son, Baylen after winning Super Bowl 44

The Game

In the week leading up to the game, I had noticed a lack of Colts fans and just thought the “Who Dat Nation” had brought more fans to their first Super Bowl but by kickoff Sunday Feb. 7th, the Indianapolis Colts fans showed up at Sun-Life Stadium to watch the New Orleans Saints collect their first Super Bowl in a 31-17 win over their beloved Colts.

It was the fastest Super Bowl I’ve shot. That left less without the penalties and time-outs to shoot fan reactions, coaches, visiting movie stars and their satellites.

The Who perform during the half time show of Super Bowl 44

For the second year in a row, I was shooting from a seat in the front row of the stands. At the Super Bowl, still photographer positions, in addition to circling the field, include about a dozen front row on opposite corners of each end zone, as well as, several front row positions in the upper deck.

Front row seat locations just above the on field photographers

While the majority of my career has been shot on the sidelines, mostly in the end zones, the end zone front row seat position affords a clear view free of referees and other personnel.  It lacks the freedom to move along the sidelines and follow the play but it affords a clear view of 3/4 of the field of play.  While I have shot touchdowns in the opposite end zone, the majority of photos come from the 50 yard line and closer depending on the size lens I’m shooting.  It is a different experience to tell the story of a game from a single fixed position.

Saints' Devery Henderson makes a long gain in the third quarter of Super Bowl 44

The Camera

The Canon EOS Mark IV is the company’s new flagship camera and getting to demo it prior to mass delivery and during the biggest football game in the world was nice.  The camera was fast and responsive and a definite plus during a night game.

While the camera is capable of going to 12,800 ISO, I shot the night game at 4,000 ISO which allowed me to shoot a shutter speed of 1,000 and 1,200 of a second.  Add in the additional resolution of the 16 megapixel sensor tucked inside the familiar EOS body and the files packed the compact flash cards with great color balance and less grain than shooting at 800 and 1,600 ISO on the Mark lln and Mark III respectively.

Colts receiver Pierre Garcon gets tripped up by the Saints defense

As you can see, the Mark IV finds some nice frames in   The $5,000 sticker shock is  a difficult ROI in today’s shrinking editorial budgets however.

The Who performed during the half time show of Super Bowl 44

Either way, it was a great game and a great new pro camera from Canon USA.

This is my edit from the game.


Super Bowl XLIV in Miami – Images by Mark Wallheiser

Who Dat!

Listening to: Lyle Lovett – If I Had A Boat

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One response to “Super Bowl XLIV and the new Canon Mark IV”

  1. Sandy says:

    Great photos which capturing the action at the game. Which the games intensify together with photos. When you see the photos you are carry over the excitement of the game.

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