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It has taken me a long time to decide what camera to go to next after my 450D. I take a LOT of photographs, maybe 3-400 per week and have done a few weddings with my 450D - but its hard to be the professional photographer when the guests have a better camera than you!
Although I dreamed of a 1D or even a 5D - the 7D was more in my price range, and I've had mine for about a year now.
I like the weight of it - and when you add a battery grip to it it fits well into my large hands. Moving from the 450D the thumb wheel on the back has taken a lot of getting used to. Some of the adjustments, like changing the drive or the iso require you to press the button on the top, and then move even the top selector wheel or the one on the back - and I can assure you, I always choose the wrong one.
I take a lot of HDR photos - and one of the benefits of this is that there are 3 different custom settings on the mode selector dial on the top of the camera - so I can flick between HDR mode (take three shots, rapid fire, fixed iso, raw) into a more single shot mode (single shot, lens wide open, auto ISO) This has really stopped me missing some shots while I chimp at the back of the camera remembering all the different settings I have to change. I'm not sure that the HDR shots on the 7D are as good as the 450 - they tend to come out more pink - but I'm sure that there is some setting that will fix that.
I updated to the 2.0 firmware immediately I bought this - but recently I noticed that the camera was hanging when I was using it a lot. The only thing I could do was to eject the battery to get it back. I since discovered that there is another firmware update that fixes this - and It has! (The crash happened at the point that the camera went into energy saving shutdown - that's when it crashed - I only noticed this when I was waiting for a shot doing street photography)
I was also surprised at the quality of the video out of this machine - its the best digital video camera I have ever used. I was astounded by the quality - but you need to put a fast CF card in to prevent frame dropouts and artifacting on some occasions.
I have two new weddings to shoot now the weather has turned - and I am happy to trust my 7d.
The d800 is topping the charts with megapixel counts but the 7d (and in fact all of canon's current crop sensor cameras) are sporting a higher resolution, or 'pixels per inch'
because 36mp full frame cropped down to a aps-c actually has a higher pixel density- this provides tremendous detail at low iso, but at high iso there is some pretty major noise. With 18mp you can crop down to 10mp and still get large prints out of it- so it makes a great camera for anything where you are focal length challenged, such as sports or wildlife- a 70-200 f4 IS makes a great lightweight combination with an effective 112-320mm focal length.
Now that the science bit is over let's get into the rest of the review. In my opinion this camera is too complicated, as a professional photographer I know my way around a camera but this one left me clueless- so overly unnecessarily complicated is the AF system that it led to missed shots while I wrestled with settings. You can maybe make it simpler but I got rid of the camera by that point, the professional 1 series cameras I use are much simpler, they just work as you'd expect them to- I strongly suspect the consumer grade canon's have a chip on their shoulder and need to provide all the bells and whistles to their amateur buyers.
The camera has great video, all canon's do- but it's no better than a 550d, maybe there are some differences but I don't shoot video enough to know them.
all in all the 7d is a good camera, but it is the opposite experience to shooting with a manual focus, manual everything film camera- this camera is tron, it is the matrix, it is confusion incarnate. If you just want to take pictures and not need a degree in auto focus systems then look into the 5dmk2 or the 60d
I was torn between the Canon 7D and the Canon 5dMK2, I went for this in the end as I use more automatic modes so thought that the Canon 7D sounded perfect. It is very easy to learn how to use and turns out great quality pictures every time. It's very quick to switch between the different controls and modes. If there is a sudden change in the light then there is no problem quickly switching aperture levels or changing the iso. The automatic zoom is great and very fast so no magic moments will be missed!
It is quite heavy once you have your lens attached, and especially if you add the flash too but it's well balanced and you soon get used to it - once you're over the shock!
My only complaint is that the flash is absolutely horrible, I've never used a picture that was taken with the flash and have it set to never come on! I would strongly recommend getting a separate flash so that you have much more control over the light levels.
I bought a Canon 7D when I turned 21 (birthday present off everybody) to replace my Panasonic G10 and although it cost nearly 10 times more than my Panasonic, it is worth every penny!
To begin with the camera is very sleek in design and feels great in your hands. It is sturdy and responsive when being tested, which is never a bad sign!
Upon switching on, you are greeted with the 'sensor cleaning' screen and then the screen goes black. This is where the 'Info' button on the left hand side comes in; pressing it brings the LCD screen comes alive, displaying either the current settings of the camera, the leveler setting (which shows if the camera is balanced (like what a spirit level is used for)) and the general information screen (showing free space on the memory card and colour temperature etc). Alternatively by pressing the 'Start Stop' button located to the right of the viewfinder, the screen displays exactly what the lens can see.
Moving on to the specifications: 18mp Sensor, RAW/JPEG option, FULL HD 1080p Video Recording (at 24 25 frames per second), full manual override, Live view (via LCD) and the more natural variation (through the viewfinder). The camera has 6 preset modes, with a manual and 3 custom options, leaving you with 10 modes on the dial.
The camera works an absolute treat in your hand and with the live viewfinder, you can see exactly how your photos are going to turn out before you press the shutter - ideal for professionals and amateurs alike.
Another great feature is the 'zoom focus' option (as I call it), which in manual focus and on the live viewfinder allows you to digitally zoom into your subject and adjust the focus accordingly, just to be sure it's 100% in focus - to do this, you press the far top-right hand side button on the back of the camera and adjust the focus accordingly. This also works for video.
The camera fires at a top speed of 8 frames per second and has a long exposure time of 30 seconds, with a 100 - 12800 ISO.
To conclude I am very impressed with this camera and all the functions it has, there is that much going on here that I cannot possibly mention everything, but I hope you find this information useful - any questions, don't hesitate to ask!
Cheesy Headline out the way, you'll no doubt want to know exactly why I think the 7D is just so good.
I've been an avid photographer now for a good few years and after spending the last 4 years with my trusty Canon 400D I decided to take the plunge and upgrade to a better model.
After taking my time to look around at all the available options I decided to shoot for the 7D
Initial reasons why appart from the fact its a new camera is that all my setup and lenses from my 400d will then be compatable with this camera body because of the EF/EF-S lens mounts. I had contemplated going to full frame with the 5d mk II but it would mean ditching all my current lenses as well.
Anyway back to the camera in question:
The Canon EOS 7D is an 18 megapixel digital SLR camera with the new APS-C CMOS sensor.
With a revised photodiode and microlens the 7D's sensor offers an ISO range of 100-12,800.
It also includes the dual DIGIC 4 processor offering continuous shooting at 8fps, improved 19-point cross-type auto-focus system including Zone and Spot Auto Focus.
A 63 zone Focus Colour Luminance metering system, and an Intelligent Viewfinder with 100% frame coverage and 1.0x magnification.
It has a 3 inch Clear View II LCD screen with 920,000 resolution is used for the camera's Live View and Movie modes, with Full HD 1080 supported.
It is equipped with an integrated Speedlite Transmitter, making it easier to control external Speedlite flashguns with no additional accessories needed. The magnesium alloy body offers weather sealing and Integrated Cleaning System.
The 7D just feels so much better in your hand. Any photographer knows its not just the kit but how it feels to you that counts. There is no point in having the best camera around if its awkward to carry and horrible to hold. After all depending on what you use the camera for, chances are you will be holding it quite a lot and comfort and feel does matter.
Even though the 7D weighs 820g which is 10 grams heavier than its big brother the 5D mk II, its ever so slightly smaller at 148.2 x 110.7 x 73.5mm and for some reason this just feels better.
The 7D has a magnesium alloy body which should make it more durable in the longer term rather than my old 400d plastic-bodied camera, and it also adds a level of weather-sealing that the 5D Mark II notably lacks.
The grip for your hands has a textured area, and is perfect for everyone with normal to large hands. Like other semi-pro cameras, the 7D offers two control wheels; a small one on the top of the handgrip, and a large, spinning dial on the back of the camera. This rear 'quick control dial' is characteristic of all high-end Canon EOS cameras. It takes a bit to get used to compared to more conventional control dials, but you quickly get used to it and it is easy to 'spin'. This dial can be used to apply rapid exposure adjustments, with the new Lock button preventing any further changes being made, useful if you want to maintain the current settings.
I also like the quick control dial where you'd normally find the 4-way controller on other models, which means for navigating the menus I find it actually easier but some will still like the old 4-way control buttons. The 7D also now incorporates a small joystick like button, much like a mouse button on a laptop to help with the navigation but to be honest i dont use that, I just use the two spin dials to make selections.
On top of the 7D above the large status LCD display, are three buttons all having two functions. You press a button and then turn either the top dial or the rear dial to change the corresponding setting. It takes a little while to memorise which button does what, and which dial you need to turn but you do work it out after a while. The 7D also shows the settings selected or changed on the main LCD screen as well as the status LCD. There's also a smaller fourth button which activates the status LCD display light so that you can use it in the dark.
One major plus is the new autofocus system which has come completely new changes to it. With the 7D you get the same old 3 auto focus options (One Shot, AI Focus and AI Servo) but now there is a completely new 19-point cross autofocus sensor which heps the precision when your using lenses with a max appature of f2.8 or greater.
They have a new M-Fn , or Multi-function button as well on top of the camera which helps to toggle through the 5 different AF choices available (Manual AF, Spot AF, AF point expansion, Automatic AF point selection and Zone AF) which is great and really easy to use.
There are two LCD displays on the camera. A big 3-inch colour LCD one on the rear and a smaller status one on the top. On other cheaper DSLR cameras, the LCD on the rear usually does both jobs, but on the 7D all the settings are visible on the top panel making it quicker to use and also helps to extend the battery life, as you can turn off the rear LCD screen and your still be able to change the main settings.
The Menu system on the 7D is actually quite good and easy to follow. With a simple turn of the two dials you can easily navigate them and change / modify whatever options you like.
One thing I did notice from my 400d is that on the 7D you can only delete 1 image at a time with the delete button on the back, if you want to delete everything on the card you have to go into the menu and select delete all. I guess this is better in case you accidentally delete all with the old button way but it did take a few days use to get used to it.
The 7D has many other features including LIVE VIEW where by like a compact camera you can instead of using the viewfinder, switch on the live view mode and see the scene throguh the 3inch display. Also a hand thing I found was the horizon level indicator via the information button. I found this really useful even though I have spirit levels on my tripod to get the level right sometimes i was still way out but when I switched on the level indicator on the camera I managed to properly set the level and get a better shot afterwards because of it.
The 7D as mentioned before has a movie mode and can capture video at full 1080p HD. It can record HD wide-screen video in 1920 x 1080 resolution, at a frame rate of 24fps, in the Quicktime MOV format using the H.264 codec. The maximum size of a single video clip is either 4 gigabytes or one second below 30 minutes. You can also take either single or continuous stills during recording which I never saw the point of but i'm sure someone would use it.
Audio is recorded in linear PCM format with no compression unfortunately.
There's a built-in mic on the front of the camera for mono recording, and also a socket on the side for an external mic.
It also has an HDMI port for playing back the videos or images on your tele or pc.
So far I must have shot a few thousand images with the 7D to date and other than my own imperfections due to my ability as a photographer I've never thought it may be down to the camera. When I had my 400D I always thought I could do better but my camera was holding me back. With the 7D its the other way around, I feel I'm not good enough for the camera, it's like it is screaming out for a pro to use it *smile*. But seriously what I mean is that its just a top notch camera which would be ideal for anyone to use.
Yes it is a little expensive coming in at around £1150 for the body alone, but it is a whole lot of camera and anyone reading this review who is contemplating buying one, all I can tell you is that it's half the price of the next camera up from this the 5D mk II and there is a very limited small difference in performance and quality. Yet it's just way more of a camera over the 1000D or the 60D which are only a couple of hundred quid below the 7D in price.
It's the ideal camera for a serious enthusiast or even a pro photographer.
The Canon quality shines through and you will have endless fun with it and it wont let you down.
The first thing I am going to say is that I am an avid Canon fan. Every printer, camera or video-camera I have ever owned has been Canon and I have never been let down by their service or products. That's the first benefit of this camera, the Canon after service that you'll receive should anything happen to your product.
Having been an amateur photographer for most of my teenage life, when I finally had a bit of cash to spend I went into the market for cameras. I did a lot of research through the different Canon choices, from the older 400D up to the the Canon 5D. I finally settled on the 7D as it seemed to be the best camera to suit my needs.
The first thing that I will comment on the actual camera is the build quality. It has a heavy duty, durable frame. I feel that this is important as when you are out and about shooting, the last thing you need to be worrying about is your camera taking knocks and bumps.
The function system is a little different than that of other Canon brands and takes a few seconds getting used too; once you do however, it is all for the better. Everything you need to know and change is displayed in easy to read and access format.
The camera has an ISO range of up too 12800, which should be more than most will need. With minimal noise at high ISO settings as well, which is a worthy note to mention.
You can shoot up to 8 frames per second on the pictures, until the buffer is full after which you will have to allow it to copy across to the card before continuing to shoot. This is insanely fast and allows you to capture that perfect moment even when following the fastest of objects.
The pictures and videos that the camera takes are phenomenal, I have only used it with an EF 70-200mm lens and a Wide angle one so far. The 3.0 LCD shows you everything you need to see in crisp and clear detail.
The flash on the camera is as good as you can expect for a built in flash, but for any true flash work you are going to need to get one of the Canon Speedlites.
The Canon 7D, Wow what A camera, I purchased the 7D because my 20D was getting a little old and I searched the Canon site for a suitable replacement, After looking at several cameras I wittled it down to 2 that were in my budget the 5D mk2 and the 7D and after alot of thought I went for the 7D as this suits my type of photography better as I believe the 5D mk2 is better suited for portrait work the 7D is by far better suited to sports and nature photography
If you are looking to shoot sport and nature then this is the camera for you with 8 frames per second you know your going to get all the action, lots of other features you will like for instance the built in wireless flash so you can use your Canon EX Flash's of the camera without having to buy the wireless connector, Also the 19 AF points is very nice
Other features like the live view mode is excellent and the level indicator (which looks like a flight simulation) is very handy, also the grid display you can use to help with the rule of thirds is very nifty, I could go on and on but if you are looking here and are looking to purchase the Canon 7D you will already have some knowladge of this type of camera and if you are looking to take photo's of sport, aircarft, wildlife then this camera will do the job with ease and give you great results, If you are new to Digital SLR's then be warned that there are no presettings and you will need some knowladge of how to use a digital SLR to get the most from it.
Currently I am upgrade from Canon EOS 50D to this Canon EOS 7D. This Canon EOS 7D has so many significant improvement than my before Canon EOS 50D, such as Full High Definition Video Recording capability, higher ISO (up to 12.800 with expansion), better noise control, higher mega pixels, new focusing system, better LCD, and can trigger the external flash (such as Canon 580EX II or Canon 430EX II) wireless like the Nikon CLS (Creative Lighting System) system.
I was impressed with the new Auto focus system which is has 19 focus points, the focus was fast moving and accurate. it will better if you mix the 7D auto focus system function with the Canon 580EX II auto focus assist. I've ever shoot in the very low light condition in a pub, which I cannot see anything clearly and I can get the great focusing with my Canon 7D and the auto focus assist of my 580EX II.
The new AF system on the 7D is awsome, zone af and af expansion are just fantastic and put this camera in the same league as the 1DS but without the hefty price tag. With a 300mm F/2.8 L IS shots are tack sharp. Having owned many previous xxD models the 7D is the best, better focus, better frame rate, better weather sealing, HD video (not my cup of tea on an SLR), definitely the best mid price SLR.
As a film student I bought this camera purely for the video mode. It has not disappointed.
Build quality is fantastic, it feels like a quality product in your hands. Its taken quite a beating in bags and on set but is still completely unscathed.
The video mode is superb with full 1080p recording and selectable frame rates. With the right camera settings and lenses you can make your footage look almost as good as 35mm film.
Owning a stills camera this good has inevitably led to me taking up photography and I adore this camera for it. There are extensive manual controls for composing your shot or very efficient auto functions for those who are unsure. With the right lens Autofocus is fast and quiet, as is the shutter. I shoot primarily in RAW and pictures come out pin sharp with beautiful colours.
My only issues with the camera are a couple of setbacks in Video Mode. Firstly the Automatic Gain control means you get terrible audio if you plug in an external mic. Canon were able to fix this with the 5d but currently haven't with the 7d. The other problem, although its a minor one, is that it is a little prone to overheating when left in Liveview/Video Mode for too long.
Overall this is a stunning camera, but those wanting it primarily for Video should also consider the 5d mark II.
I bought this product to begin making videos for my boyfriends music and to generally get into photography. They are expensive but are really worth the money! The pictures are amazingly clear, picking up even the tiniest detail on the object which you are taking a picture of, whether it be a person or an ornament. It has lots of features which professional photographers will find really useful but may be confusing to amateur photographers like myself. But the guide which it comes with discusses what each feature does and after a while you'll begin to understand. It's a great product and both professional and amateur photographers will find the wide variety of features as a great help to make the best of their talent and passion.
I upgraded to this little beaut just over a month ago ... and boy im sooo glad i did :-)
for an a budding novice when it comes to photography .. this is a must
its quite .. you hardly hear the sutter, and quick to focus, which is a bonus when it comes to wildlife photography
after using the 450d and 50d for some time, i did find navigating around the controls a little awkward .. but as with any new toy, this comes with use and practice
so far, ive produced some quality pictures, and all round in exptremely pleased. from wildlife, still life and portrait .. canon has come up trumps with this one
the battery life is a little slow, and with the new chipping in the battery, your unable to use any other battery than canon, or the icon wont show on the screen
the camera itself is a little heavy for me .. but again, its something i'll get used it
so if your thinking of splashing out ... this is highly recommended for both results, build and quality