Canon EOS 70D review

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Canon EOS 70D is the latest model that stands in the middle of current Canon DSLR lineup. You could call it a sort of advanced amateur or semi-professional camera, but there’s no such thing in real life: it is the photographer who defines how and for what purpose the gear is used. Theory aside, 70D distinguishes itself from more affordable 700D by many features like higher burst frame rate, more focus points and by the physical size and control layout. Also, there is a new 20 megapixel sensor inside, pretty impressive live view focusing system and a superb swivel LCD with touch control.

CANON EOS 70D MAIN FEATURES

  • 20 MP APS-C sensor (5472 x 3648 pixels)
  • ISO 100-12,800 native, up to 25,600 expanded
  • Silent shutter mode
  • 7fps burst speed
  • 19 point auto focus system (all points cross-type)
  • New Dual Pixel  CMOS AF live-view contrast detect AF system
  • Electronic level display in viewfinder
  • Swivel 3″ LCD with touch control
  • Built-in WiFi
  • Built-in flash acts as remote flash trigger
  • 1920 x 1080 video @30/25/24p or 1280 x 720 @ 60/50/30/25p
  • Dimensions: 139 x 104 x 79 mm (5.47 X 4.11 X 3.09″)
  • Weight: 755g/1.66 lb/26.63 oz (with battery)
  • Memory card: SD/SDHC/SDXC
  • Battery: Li-Ion LP-E6

CANON EOS 70D CONSTRUCTION AND HANDLING

Canon 70D is very well built camera. It is mostly plastic over metal frame, but all the pieces are assembled well together. The camera has some level of weather sealing, but it is not equally applied to all the joints and openings… for example, memory card door has no sealing whatsoever. What’s up with that Canon?

Overall size of the 70D is not to big like 5D series cameras, but it still fits very nicely in almost any (large) hand. Grip is protruding enough to allow me to get a secure grip on the camera without fatigue over longer periods of use. Front part of the grip as well as the thumb rest is covered with non-slippery rubber.

Since this is an “advanced” camera model, is comes with twin control dials and a lot of direct controls on the exterior of the camera. All the major functions like ISO, AF mode, focus points, light metering or drive modes have theirs dedicated buttons and it is very easy to change settings on the fly without the need to dig through the menu. Once you get used to this type of camera control, models like EOS Rebel series will feels cumbersome to use.

There is one detail I did not like about the ergonomics though: multi-way controller is placed at the bottom of the camera, too far away from the usual thumb position. In order to use it for AF point change, I had to swing my thumb at impossible degree to reach it or completely move my hand. This could be avoided by incorporating nipple-styled joystick like the  one on 7D, but  this is on of the details Canon uses to attract customers to higher priced 7D.

Also, there is no easy way to reset focus point to central one. Nikon cameras can do that by pressing the center of multi-way controller. “SET” button on EOS 70D doesn’t have this option. It can be assignes to various functions, but not one of them links it to central AF point.

EOS 70D has a touch screen which works flawlessly… actually this might be the best touch LCD on the market today. Samsung also responds well, but Sony and Olympus LCD’s lag in precision and response. Touch control is very useful for quick browse through menu or for selecting AF point in live-view.

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