70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF

Started Jul 3, 2013 | Discussions
Don Richardson
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70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
Jul 3, 2013

I read somewhere here that the 70D AF system isn't the same as the 7D AF system but can't find it now. Who ever wrote that it's different said the 70D was lacking some of the 7D's AF functions.

If this is correct could some 7D shooters or folks that understand the 19 pt system explain what is different between the two systems. I'm not talking about the Live view and Video AF just the 19 pt used with the viewfinder.

I've read what I could find but couldn't see the differences.

DonR
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Jonathan Brady
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Don't know for sure but...
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

I've read just the opposite.  In fact, I've read something along the lines of "the 70D is inheriting the AF system from the 7D"

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MarshallG
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

On paper, the viewfinder autofocus of 7D and 70D are identical in every way but two:
1) 7D has easier focus point selection (the joystick)
2) 7D has a dedicated CPU for focus, while the 70D has a single, faster CPU.

Overall, the two autofocus systems appear to be virtually identical, and any differences will be negligible. Here are some key things:

They both have 19 cross-type focus sensors. That is really fantastic. They both have the same focusing modes, including an AI Servo mode that will track focus across the 19 sensors while you shoot at 7 or 8 fps. That is the sports photography mode, which really differentiates the 7D (and now, the 70D). This is the mode that takes the most CPU time.

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Jonathan Brady
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...just remembered something...
In reply to Jonathan Brady, Jul 3, 2013

I just remembered something I read earlier - the 70D only has 3 modes to choose from whereas the 7D has 5.  70D has "all points AF", "single point AF" and "zone AF" so it's missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion".

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WilbaW
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to Jonathan Brady, Jul 3, 2013

Jonathan Brady wrote:

I just remembered something I read earlier - the 70D only has 3 modes to choose from whereas the 7D has 5. 70D has "all points AF", "single point AF" and "zone AF" so it's missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion".

What about the "focus area expansion control" - "The small button between the shutter release and the front dial is a dedicated focus area expansion control. Pressing it allows you to expand the AF area from a single point to progressively larger groups of points - useful when tracking a moving subject." (DPReview preview, page 4.)

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Jonathan Brady
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to WilbaW, Jul 3, 2013

could be single point to zone to all points?

The 70D "specifications" page on Canon's website doesn't list "spot AF" or "AF point expansion"

http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/slr_cameras/eos_70d#Specifications

That's all I can come up with...? :-/

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Karl Gnter Wnsch
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to MarshallG, Jul 3, 2013

MarshallG wrote:

They both have the same focusing modes

Nope, the 70D is lacking the Spot-AF...

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MarshallG
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to Karl Gnter Wnsch, Jul 3, 2013

MarshallG wrote:

They both have the same focusing modes

Nope, the 70D is lacking the Spot-AF...

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Karl Günter Wünsch

Oh? If so... that mode never made any sense to me anyways.

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TTMartin
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to MarshallG, Jul 3, 2013

MarshallG wrote:

On paper, the viewfinder autofocus of 7D and 70D are identical in every way but two:
1) 7D has easier focus point selection (the joystick)

Having both the 7D and the 6D, it is not easier to select a focus point using the joystick instead of the 8 way controller on the wheel it is just different.

The 8 way controller on the wheel has its own advantage, that being when using a battery grip in portrait orientation it is still usable, where the joystick of the 7D is not reachable when using a battery grip in portrait orientation.

2) 7D has a dedicated CPU for focus, while the 70D has a single, faster CPU.

Overall, the two autofocus systems appear to be virtually identical, and any differences will be negligible. Here are some key things:

They both have 19 cross-type focus sensors. That is really fantastic. They both have the same focusing modes, including an AI Servo mode that will track focus across the 19 sensors while you shoot at 7 or 8 fps. That is the sports photography mode, which really differentiates the 7D (and now, the 70D). This is the mode that takes the most CPU time.

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Karl Gnter Wnsch
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to MarshallG, Jul 3, 2013

MarshallG wrote:

Oh? If so... that mode never made any sense to me anyways.

It's the most used for me if focusing is critical - even with moving subjects. It's the most valuable amongst all of the focusing modes the 7D provides when you need a certain area of your subject in critical focus (like the eyes of a portrait or the head of a flying bird).

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Paul B Jones
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to MarshallG, Jul 3, 2013

MarshallG wrote:

MarshallG wrote:

They both have the same focusing modes

Nope, the 70D is lacking the Spot-AF...

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regards
Karl Günter Wünsch

Oh? If so... that mode never made any sense to me anyways.

I use it with large telephoto lenses to set the focus on the eye of a bird or mammal when shooting through heavy brush. It seems to cut down on focus hunting in such situations.

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drbird
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to Karl Gnter Wnsch, Jul 3, 2013

I use spot-AF a lot mainly for small song birds to make sure the eyes are in focus. But goo luck using for birds in flight....it really struggles already with slow moving birds like egrets, ducks and the like.  Things get even worse in bad light or with black-colored birds like the whole Auk-family.

Single point focus has not nearly these kind of problems with BIF.

But the missing spot AF, the SD-cards and the lack of the joystick for moving the active AF-points is a real disadvantage in my eye.

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Flying Fish
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Lack of spot focus would be a deal-breaker for me
In reply to drbird, Jul 3, 2013

As others have explained...also good for small birds like hummingbirds.

FF

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Flying Fish
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What is the smallest aperture the 70D's AF will work with?
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

The 7D needs a minimum aperture of f/5.6 for the AF to work.  I haven't seen the comparable  spec for the 70D--anyone know?

FF

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Don Richardson
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to WilbaW, Jul 3, 2013

WilbaW wrote:

Jonathan Brady wrote:

I just remembered something I read earlier - the 70D only has 3 modes to choose from whereas the 7D has 5. 70D has "all points AF", "single point AF" and "zone AF" so it's missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion".

What about the "focus area expansion control" - "The small button between the shutter release and the front dial is a dedicated focus area expansion control. Pressing it allows you to expand the AF area from a single point to progressively larger groups of points - useful when tracking a moving subject." (DPReview preview, page 4.)

This is what I read. Not ever having usied the 7D it would seem that missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion" would be a really big deal with BIF doesn't it?

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007peter
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I recall DPR say F/11 using Live View
In reply to Flying Fish, Jul 3, 2013

Flying Fish wrote:

The 7D needs a minimum aperture of f/5.6 for the AF to work. I haven't seen the comparable spec for the 70D--anyone know?

Go back and read the 70d preview.  As I recalled from memory, because of the Dual CMOS Sensor, 70d can shoot up to F/11 using Live View, but not with OVF.

Either way, this open up new possibility.  A 2X TC on 70-200 F4 = 140-400mm F8 shouldn't be a problem now.

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dhogaza
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

Don Richardson wrote:

This is what I read. Not ever having usied the 7D it would seem that missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion" would be a really big deal with BIF doesn't it?

"spot AF" works best with semi-static subjects, when you're trying to zero in on an eye or the like.

"AF point expansion" is indeed really nice for active subjects like BIF.

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Don Richardson
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to dhogaza, Jul 3, 2013

dhogaza wrote:

Don Richardson wrote:

This is what I read. Not ever having usied the 7D it would seem that missing "spot AF" and "AF point expansion" would be a really big deal with BIF doesn't it?

"spot AF" works best with semi-static subjects, when you're trying to zero in on an eye or the like.

"AF point expansion" is indeed really nice for active subjects like BIF.

Seems strange that Canon left these two important options out. Could these be added with a firmware update?

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Flying Fish
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Re: ...just remembered something...
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

I wouldn't know, but none of the xxD line ever had them to my knowledge.  I know those features were among the 7D specs that led me to buy it almost as soon as it was available, and I'm really enjoying them.

FF

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rickyred
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Re: 70D 19 pt all crosstype AF vs 7D 19 pt AF
In reply to Don Richardson, Jul 3, 2013

I moved from the very nice 60D, to the 7D. Great AF system. I have read a lot of post on this forum about focus problems with the 7D. Most of which I believe is not from learning the AF system of the 7D. Will this beginĀ all over with the 70D?

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