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Canon EOS 70D Review

Canon EOS 70D Review
0
Review / 07/24/2014
Author: Photoleet avatarPhotoleet
recommendations 1, rating 4


 

 

 

TIMELINE

 

Exactly 13 years after the first model in the "two-digit" class Canon DSLRs have traveled a long distance. From a simple camera with a small sensor and limited only to EF lenses, such were models D30, D60 and somewhat later the EOS 10D, they evolved into serious magnesium bodies, whose smaller sensor, starting basically with the EOS 20D, was for the first time seen as an advantage, instead of being a cheap variant of FF cameras. Introduction of dedicated APS-C lenses labeled EF-S extended the range of usability for Canon's advanced APS-C bodies, and provided photography enthusiasts with enjoyment for much less money than it was the case until then. Eventually this class would have several revamps, in terms of construction, as well as functions, but it would always be an important item in the specter of Canon’s DSLRs.

Looking at the situation after Canon 70D has been included in the game, we can say that now we can even understand, to an extent, Canon’s empty-headed tactics with the marketing fiasco such is the EOS 700D. Has the manufacturer applied the recipe seen in the past and incorporated the same sensor in both classes, it would have lost a significant portion of momentum and exclusivity essential to the EOS 70D. We could see a similar situation several years ago when the 60D was “mined” by Canon itself, with the introduction of the EOS 600D. All this is highly important, if we take into consideration what the competition has been doing in the last months... not to say – years. The new occasions are not clear enough in giving answers to the question of EOS 7D’s future categorization in Canon's specter of DSLR’s. It is true that the 70D gives everything that is featured by the 7D, but if we think rationally, we will see that the 7D was a kind of response to Nikon’s dominance with the D300, so that in this moment, when the successor of the D300(s) is unlikely to appear, Canon’s perseverance on the successor of the EOS 7D might be mere wasting of resources, even with what the current Nikon D7100 offers at the moment.

Canon 70D gives answers to those who have been hoping that the new class might take the path defined long ago by the EOS 10D, which would mean getting back to the roots, in terms of construction as well as in terms of ergonomics. Unfortunately (or fortunately to those who see this as an announcement for the 7D Mark II), this didn’t happen, and the new camera, after a long time, gives us the opportunity to test the truly new APS-C sensor made by Canon. Of course, we, as well as you probably, are really curious to know whether the new sensor features any real novelties or it is only a formal increase of pixels in order to silence the least satisfied portion of the public. It is clear that this question cannot be answered without a more detailed inspection of the sensor’s performance. Instead of that, we have to notice that the 70D has brought a load of already familiar technology from the 7D, something from the 6D, and even a bit from a lower-class camera – the EOS 700D. Some options that have been intentionally left out of the previous models are back this time, but this unfortunately does not include a magnesium body, promoted by the EOS 10D exactly a decade ago, and abandoned by the EOS 60D. Canon 70D has a task to convince owners of popular models, such as the EOS 40D, that it is worthy of its heritage.

 

 

SPECIFICATIONS

 

Unlike the EOS 700D which was properly embarrassed by the identical list of specifications compared to its predecessor, the 70D has something to brag about:

 

 

 

Canon EOS 70D

Canon EOS 60D

Announced July 2, 2013 August 26, 2010
Type DSLR (Digital Single-Lens Reflex)
Sensor

20 MP Canon DualPixel Hybrid-CMOS, 3:2 aspect ratio;
APS-C 22.5 x 15mm (3.38 cm²)
Pixel density 5.91 MP/cm²;
Pixel size 4.1 µm

Integrated system of phase focusing

18 MP Canon CMOS, 3:2 aspect ratio;
APS-C 22.3 x 14.9mm (3.32 cm2)
Pixel density 5.42 MP/cm²;
Pixel size 4.31 µm
Formats RAW (CR2) and JPEG
Resolution RAW

5472 x 3648 (20 MP); 4104 x 2736 (11 MP); 2736 x 1824 (5 MP)

5184 x 3456 (18 MP); 3888 x 2529 (10.1 MP); 2592 x 1728 (4.5 MP)
Resolution JPEG 5472 x 3648 (20 MP); 3648 x 2432 (8.9 MP); 2736 x 1824 (5 MP); 1920 x 1280 (2.5 MP); 720 x 480 (0.35 MP) 5472 x 3456 (18 MP); 3456 x 2304 (8 MP); 2592 x 1728 (4.5 MP); 1920 x 1280 (2.5 MP); 720 x 480 (0.35 MP)
FOV (crop factor) 1.6x
Mount

Canon EF/EF-S

Kit Lens

Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM

Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM

Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS IS

Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM

Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM

Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS

Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

ISO range 100 – 12800 in 1/3 or 1 EV increments,
extended - H (25600)

100 – 6400 in 1/3 or 1 EV increments,

extended - H (12800)

Processor Canon Digic 5+ Canon Digic 5
A/D Convertor 14-bit
Color Space Adobe RGB, sRGB
In-body Stabilization N/A
Electronic Level System Yes, for the horizontal axis and both orientations Yes, for the horizontal axis
Dust Reduction

EOS Integrated Cleaning System;

Software Dust Delete Data

AF System

Canon Multi-Basis TTL-SIR with 19 cross-type AF points;

central is additionally sensitive to f/2.8;

operational range -0.5 to +18 EV

Canon Multi-Basis TTL-SIR with 9 cross-type AF points;

central is additionally sensitive to f/2.8;

operational range -0.5 to +18 EV

AF Modes

One-Shot AF;

Al-Servo AF;

Al-Focus

AF Methods

19-point auto;

Single-point AF;

Zone AF

19-point auto;

Single-point AF;

AF-Assist Internal flash strobe or external flashgun
AF Micro Adjustment

Yes;

For 40 lenses in ±20 increments

N/A
Internal flash Yes; GN12 at ISO 100 Yes; GN13 at ISO 100
Wireless Flash Control Yes; IR control of two groups of flashes in e-TTL II mode
Flashgun

e-TTL II Hot-Shoe, synchronization 1/250;

compensation ±3

Light Metering

Dual-layer 63-zone RGB;

operational range 1 to 20 EV

Light Metering Modes

Evaluative;
Partial (7.7% of the central part of the frame);
Center-weighted average

Spot (3% at the center of the frame)

Evaluative;
Partial (6.5% of the central part of the frame);
Center-weighted average

Spot (2.8% at the center of the frame)

Min Shutter Speed 30 seconds, bulb
Max Shutter Speed 1/8000 s
Drive Modes

Single; Continuous-Low; Continuous-High; Silent-Single; Silent-Continuous; Self-Timer 2 and 10s

Single; Continuous-Low; Continuous-High; Self-Timer 2 and 10s

Burst 7 fps 5.3 fps
Shutter 100,000 actuations
Buffer 16 RAW, 40 JPEG or 8 RAW+JPEG 16 RAW, 58 JPEG or 7 RAW+JPEG
Exposure Compensation -5 to +5 EV in 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV increments -5 to +5 EV in 1/3 EV or 1/2 EV increments
Viewfinder

Optical, pentamirror, 98% frame coverage; 0.95x magnification factor; eyepoint 22mm;

Fixed focusing screen with dynamic display of information and additional lines

Optical, pentamirror, 96% frame coverage; 0.95x magnification factor; eyepoint 22mm; interchangeable focusing screen

Internal Processing

Auto Lighting Optimizer; Highlight Tone Priority; HDR Backlight Control; developing RAW; vignette and chromatic aberrations removal; realtime effects in the LV mode

Auto Lighting Optimizer; Highlight Tone Priority; developing RAW; vignette removal

Display

Rotary, 3.2“ TFT-LCD, 3:2 aspect ratio, 1,040,000 pixel resolution; capacitative touch screen

Rotary, 3.2“ TFT-LCD, 3:2 aspect ratio, 1,040,000 pixel resolution

Live View

Yes, 100% coverage;

Image sensor metering – Evaluative in 315 zones;

Partial (10.3%); Spot (2.6%); Center-weighted Average

Yes, 100% coverage;

Image sensor metering in Evaluative mode

Live View AF

Hybrid focus via DualPixel Hybrid-CMOS;

FlexiZone Single; FlexiZone Multi 31 zones;

Face-Tracking; Quick mode; Touch screen AF

One-point CDAF;

Face detection; Quick mode

Video

Yes, H.264/MPEG-4 AVCHD, AII-I or IPB compression
1920 x 1080p @24/25/30 fps;
1280 x 720p @50/60 fps;
640 x 480p @25/30 fps;

Linear PCM stereo audio

(internal and external microphone)

Yes, H.264/MPEG-4 AVCHD, AII-I or IPB compression
1920 x 1080p @24/25/30 fps;
1280 x 720p @50/60 fps;
640 x 480p @25/30 fps;

Linear PCM audio

mono (internal microphone) or stereo (external microphone)

Remote Control Yes, wired RS-60E3 and wireless RC-6
Wi-Fi Yes (only the W version of the camera); Remote control, transfer of images and preview on Wi-Fi/DLNA and smartphone devices; Remote LV on Android/IOS and Windows systems; Print N/A
GPS N/A;
(Optional, GP-E2 receiver)
Storage Secure Digital (SD, SDHC, SDXC, UHS-I, EyeFi) Secure Digital (SD, SDHC, SDXC, EyeFi)
Interface

Combined USB/AV-out/GPS; HDMI Type-C; Stereo 3.5mm microphone input; E3 Remote

Weather and Dust Sealing Yes
Battery Canon LP-E6 Li-Ion, 7.2V, 1800mAh, 80g
Battery Endurance (CIPA) ~950 ~1100
Grip BG-E14 for two LP-E6 batteries or 6 AA batteries BG-E9 for two LP-E6 batteries or 6 AA batteries
Body Plastic body, strengthened with metal structure;
139 x 104 x 79 mm; 755 g
Plastic body, strengthened with metal structure;
145 x 106 x 79 mm; 755 g

Technical characteristics: Canon EOS 70D in comparison with the 60D

 

The current 18MP APS-C sensor has been the subject of discontent of photographic public for years now. Not because it is bad, as this is absolutely not the case, but because it doesn’t keep the pace, especially with the development of the competition sensors. In this regard, the new 20 MP DualPixel CMOS is real refreshment and the pompous title of technology used hides more than an interesting story which tends to get the story about weak contrast focus (CDAF) on Canon cameras once and for all off the agenda. The new autofocus system is not a real innovation, as it is a revamped version of the one we could see on the EOS 7D model. This represents another true progress, and it is important to mention that the AF Microadjustment, an option of lens calibration, is once again an integral part of this class, which was one of the greatest flaws of the 60D. Faster burst is very close to the one boasted by the 7D, and the new camera took over some ideas from the lower class... such is a touch display – a very handy thing in the moment when video is going through renaissance.  Although we have expected GPS, we haven’t got it, and instead of it, the 70D offers a Wi-Fi module, whose capabilities we saw relatively recently on the EOS 6D. While on the subject, it is very important which version of the camera you will buy, because only the one marked with a suffix "(W)" features a Wi-Fi function. The “N” version is intended for markets on which Wi-Fi connection would not be in terms with legislation, so it should be taken in consideration.

 

PACKAGE

 

Package is usual, as well as its content:

 

Canon EOS 70D, content of the basic “body only” package

 

The content of the box depends on the package offered, and in the case of Canon EOS 70D, there are four variants. The basic one, the one we tested, includes only body with accompanying bayonet cover and the following equipment: LP-E6 Li-Ion battery, LC-E6E charger (or LC-E6E version with a cable for powering from a power outlet, which we tested), EW-EOS70D wide shoulder strap, USB cable, printed user manual for the camera and the Wi-Fi module, the usual accompanying disks with software and user manuals. The software includes a free application for processing RAW images (Digital Photo Professional), operating the camera (EOS Utility), creating color styles (Picture Styles Editor); making panoramic shots (Photo Stitch) and cataloging and browsing (Image Browser EX). The remaining three variants of package include one of the three kit lenses – Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM or Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS.