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Canon EOS 70D Review


Review based on a production Canon EOS 70D

During the early days of digital SLRs, Canon was pretty much the undisputed leader in CMOS image sensor technology. Almost every new EOS model came with an increase in resolution and high ISO range, and when the EOS 7D appeared in late 2009, the company had progressed from 3MP to 18MP, and ISO 1600 to ISO 12800, in just over nine years. But since then Canon's APS-C cameras have all sported variants on the same basic sensor design, to the extent that you could be forgiven for wondering what on earth their engineers were doing all day. Now we know.

The EOS 70D is a mid-range SLR for enthusiast photographers that from the outside looks like a sensible, indeed desirable upgrade to the EOS 60D. It borrows many of the best bits from Canon's existing SLRs, including the autofocus sensor from the EOS 7D, the fully articulated touchscreen from the EOS 700D (Rebel T5i), and built-in Wi-Fi from the EOS 6D. But on the inside it sports an entirely new sensor that is, potentially, revolutionary. It offers 20.2MP resolution, but uses a 'Dual Pixel CMOS AF' design in which every single pixel is split into two separately-readable photodiodes, facing left and right. This means that in principle they are all capable of phase detection autofocus in live view and movie mode.

On-chip phase detection is nothing new - we first saw it in the Fujifilm F300EXR back in 2010. Since then it's been adopted in one form or another by most manufacturers, with arguably its most successful implementation coming in Nikon's 1 System mirrorless models. But because until now it's used relatively few active pixels scattered sparsely across the sensor, it's had practical limitations, often only covering a restricted area of the frame and struggling once the light drops below outdoor daylight levels. Canon says that its Dual Pixel AF system, in contrast, works across an area 80% of the frame width and height, in light levels as low as 0 EV, and at apertures down to F11. This means it could well be the most capable live view autofocus system we've yet seen on any type of camera.

We'll look at the technology behind the EOS 70D's live view AF in more detail later, but let's not forget that it has to work as a conventional SLR too. To this end it uses the same 19-point AF sensor as the EOS 7D for viewfinder shooting, but with slightly simplified control options in firmware. It can rattle shots off at 7fps for up to 65 frames in JPEG or 16 in Raw, and its standard ISO range covers 100-12800, with ISO 25600 as an expanded option. Image processing is via the DIGIC 5+ processor first seen in the EOS 5D Mark III.

In terms of control layout the EOS 70D is a logical evolution of the EOS 60D, adopting many of Canon's intervening updates and improvements. So it offers a full set of external controls to operate most key functions, and Canon's well-designed Quick Control screen to cover pretty much everything else. It also adopts the superb touchscreen interface that debuted on the EOS 650D (Rebel T4i), which we've found to be more useful than you might at first think. The 70D also regains an array of features that disappeared between the EOS 50D and 60D, such as AF microadjustment.

Canon EOS 70D key features

  • 20.2MP APS-C 'Dual Pixel CMOS AF' sensor
  • DIGIC 5+ image processor
  • ISO 100-12800 standard, 25600 expanded
  • 7fps continuous shooting, burst depth 65 JPEG / 16 Raw
  • 'Silent' shutter mode
  • 1080p30 video recording, stereo sound via external mic
  • 19-point AF system, all points cross-type, sensitive to -0.5 EV
  • 63-zone iFCL metering system
  • 98% viewfinder coverage, 0.95x magnification, switchable gridlines and electronic level display
  • Fully-articulated touchscreen, 1040k dot 3" ClearView II LCD, 3:2 aspect ratio
  • Single SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Single-axis electronic level
  • Built-in flash works as off-camera remote flash controller
  • AF microadjustment (can be set individually for up to 40 lenses, remembered by lens serial number)
  • In-camera High Dynamic Range and Multiple Exposure modes (JPEG-only)
  • 'Creative Filter' image processing styles, previewed in live view

Key specs compared

In the table below we see how some of the EOS 70D's key specs measure up against its more expensive big brother, the EOS 7D, and its main rival, the Nikon D7100. What's interesting here is just how close the 70D is to the 7D in terms of spec - in much the same way as Nikon's D7000 made the D300S look almost redundant, it's quite difficult to see why most Canon users would now choose the top-end APS-C model.

 
Canon EOS 70D
Canon EOS 7D
Nikon D7100
 Effective Pixels  • 20.2 MP  • 18.0 MP  • 24.1 MP
 ISO Range  • 100-12800 standard
 • 25600 expanded
 • 100-6400 standard
 • 12800 expanded
 • 100-6400 standard
 • 50-25600 expanded
 No of AF points  • 19  • 19  • 51
 AF in live view  • Phase detection  • Contrast detection  • Contrast detection
 Screen  • 3.0" 3:2
 • 1,040,000 dots
 • Fully-articulated
 • Touch sensitive
 • 3.0" 4:3
 • 920,000 dots
 • Fixed
 • 3.2" 4:3
 • 1,228,800 dots
 • Fixed
 Viewfinder  • 98% coverage
 • 0.95x magnification
 • 100% coverage
 • 1.0x magnification
 • 100% coverage
 • 0.94x magnification
 Continuous drive  • 7 fps  • 8 fps  • 6 fps
 Storage  • SD/SDHC/SDXC  • Compact flash  • SD/SDHC/SDXC
 • 2 slots
 Weight
 (inc batteries)
 • 755g (1.7 lb)  • 860g (1.9 lb)  • 765g (1.7 lb)
 Dimensions  • 139 x 104 x 79 mm
   (5.5 x 4.1 x 3.1")
 • 148 x 111 x 74 mm
   (5.8 x 4.4 x 2.9")
 • 136 x 107 x 76 mm
   (5.4 x 4.2 x 3.0")
 Wi-Fi  •  Built-in  •  Optional  •  Optional

Size and design compared to the EOS 60D

The EOS 70D directly replaces the EOS 60D in Canon's range, and is very similar in terms of size and design. It's a bit smaller though, and has a sensibly-updated control layout. Here we take a more-detailed look at the two cameras side-by-side.

From the front the EOS 70D looks almost identical to the 60D. But it's slimmed down a bit, being fractionally narrower. Look a little closer and you can also see that the 60D's front-facing mono microphone has gone (replaced by stereo mics on the top plate).
The two cameras are pretty similar from the back too, with the 70D retaining the same basic layout. It gains Canon's improved live view/movie mode controller, and has a physical switch to lock the rear dial against accidental operation rather than a button. Other than that it uses all the same buttons, just not necessarily in the same order.
From the top, again the 70D is very much a sensible evolution. The mode dial is simplified and now rotates continuously rather than having hard end stops, and there's a new AF area expansion button next to the shutter release. But the rest of the controls are all essentially the same.

Kit options and pricing

The EOS 70D will be sold body-only for £1079 / $1199 / €1099, as a kit with the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM for £1199.99 / $1340 / €1249, or with the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens for £1399.99 $1549 / €1499. The BG-E14 battery grip will cost £229.99 / $270 / €215.


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2013 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 562
1234
Leonard Shepherd
By Leonard Shepherd (6 months ago)

Page 11 says the autofocus target is a good one.
This seems to be a fundamental error. According to Nikon and Canon it is not a first class target for testing phase detect AF.
It is not for me to explain why ephotozine has not followed Nikon/Canon guidance on choosing a good target foresting phase detect AF.
Whether the Canon would show the same front and back phase detect focus issues with a better target is unknown - but probably not.
When AF is not accurate due to a target being unsuitable for consistent reliable AF, recommended work arounds are manual focus or a better AF target at an appropriate distance.
Fine tune is primarily for accuracy issues with good targets - not less than ideal targets where the focus error is usually due to the target and not the equipment.

0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

Hi Leonard, preaching your gospel to all peoples everywhere ...

0 upvotes
Martin-C
By Martin-C (6 months ago)

Len, I think you have got confused about which site you are posting on. Surely you meant to say:

It is not for me to explain why *DPReview* has not followed Nikon/Canon guidance on choosing a good target foresting phase detect AF.

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

A camera's AF system is of little use if it can only focus on manufacturer-approved targets, since that's not what most people shoot.

We created a reasonable test target and shot at a reasonable distance and were able to repeatedly get results consistent with real-world shooting.

6 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (5 months ago)

most people are lazy bones.

0 upvotes
bleeboo
By bleeboo (6 months ago)

Bought one, had to return it. IQ: Superb. AutoFocus (movie): For a DSLR, absolutely transformational.

Return reason: Moire', city.

Even at 1920 x 1080 30p, way too much moire'.

At 720 60p? Moire' is so bad, the footage is virtually unusable.

I know. "Buy a dedicated video camera", or "Buy a moire' filter".

Uh uh. Got a Panasonic GH3 instead. Is it perfect? No. Is the 70D better at stills? Yes. But, right now, it's the best still/video hybrid out there at this consumer price point.

I wanted to love and keep the 70D. All Canon had to do, was quell some of the moire', which I believe they could have done. But, for whatever reason, they didn't.

Comment edited 44 seconds after posting
6 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (6 months ago)

> All Canon had to do, was quell some of the moire', which I believe they could have done. But, for whatever reason, they didn't.

That could be the same reason D7100 dropped the anti-aliasing filter altogether - a balance between quality of stills vs. video. It's a fine line to walk.

3 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

Can you describe what the moire looked like and in what situations it appeared? I have a 7D and never experienced this problem and I don't recall ever hearing others talk about the same problem.

1 upvote
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

@onlooker

There's an interesting test video of both (70D, D7100) and the 70D was much worse re moiré, even though the camera w/o AA filter is the D7100. Go figure!

2 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (6 months ago)

@rhlpetrus - I saw that, that was from TheCameraStore. I was perplexed and not sure what to think. Just shows you there are factors the engineers are dealing with we may not fully understand.

3 upvotes
bleeboo
By bleeboo (5 months ago)

Yes. The moire' is prevalent mostly on edges of surfaces, contrasting borders in the field of view, and zoomed all of the way out. It's only "disturbing" at 1080 30p, but, it's "Katie, Bar The Door" horrible at 720 60p.

Seriously. The moire' makes the video on the 70D a showstopper. Did everything I could to mitigate it, zero sharpness, shot everything flat, etc...

Even in post, you couldn't resuscitate it. Too bad, really. I think the engineers could have corrected this, especially in light of the stellar stills this beautiful otherwise camera takes. But, I guess to point people towards their higher line, maybe they didn't want to. Just a theory.

If you want a great stills camera, you have a lot of Canon glass, and you like responsiveness, this is your camera. Just don't think you'll be able to use the video for anything other than an emergency.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (5 months ago)

Why perplexed?
AA filters doesn't help on line skipping video.
Or rather, are tuned for the sensors original nmbr of lines.

So, that has to be handled elsewhere, or by not doing line skipping.

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

bleeboo, what do you mean "zoomed all the way out"? Are you viewing this full screen or in a small window? Are you looking at video on a monitor or a large HD television?

Comment edited 49 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
bleeboo
By bleeboo (5 months ago)

I mean, when you're at the lowest amount of zoom, the moire' is at its worst, zooming "in" does mitigate the moire' somewhat, but, not to the point where the video is acceptable to watch. You can even see the moire' in the EVF while you're recording.

And, the moire' is there in every viewing scenario, large HD television, and your monitor, full screen. I have both, and have viewed on both.

As I said, the new focusing scheme is transformational for a DSLR. I have a 60D, and it couldn't really auto-focus to save it's life in live view shooting video. The 70D is lightning fast with auto-focus in live view video mode, similar to a mirrorless camera like the GH3 I bought...so, it's truly a shame that Canon didn't mate this wonderful new technology for focusing, with video that could at least be marginally watchable.

If you don't care about the video, (which I do, very much), this might be a great camera for your needs. But, if you want watchable video, the dream is dead on this baby.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
bleeboo
By bleeboo (5 months ago)

I should say, you can see the moire' on the LCD screen while recording in live view. And of course, the viewfinder is optical.

Too much time having fun with the GH3...it's the one with the EVF.

0 upvotes
NancyP
By NancyP (6 months ago)

Don't knock "above average" and "well-rounded". Some of us don't need "the best out there", merely "the camera that can do what I need it to do".

8 upvotes
Dave Oddie
By Dave Oddie (6 months ago)

I agree. Most modern cameras are more than enough for most amateurs.

However I think when someone such as yourself who clearly likes the camera points out comments like "above average" etc it does call into question how on earth it got a Gold Award.

This would not be such an issue if it were not for the fact people can be influenced by such awards and it will sit alongside it when being promoted in shops and presumably the DPR Gear Shop will link to the review.

3 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

Awards and scores are absolutely subjective. DPR reviewers have said more than once that their awards are given in context of what is currently on the market, not with what has become obsolete (old stuff may have gotten the same award that the newer, better stuff has). Also, if there is one aspect that is truly remarkable it can change how the whole system is perceived.

0 upvotes
Dave Oddie
By Dave Oddie (5 months ago)

What you say might all be true but that doesn't stop manufacturers listing all the rewards their products get but you won't ever see them put a qualification on them saying "by the way that Gold Award from DPR was subjective".

I am pretty sceptical (and always have been) of DPR's and DXO's and virtually every other popular web sites testing strategies (e.g. Imaging Resource) as I am not convinced any of them are good enough methods from a scientific point of view. They don't seem rigorous or robust enough for me.

I don't think I have ever commented on a cameras award before but this one struck me as quite out of line with the conclusions and while I myself and maybe you will ignore the award when making a decision many won't.

If Amazon (i.e.DPR Gear Shop!) wants to sell cameras and retain credability it needs a bit better editorial checking before they go to "print" to weed out anomalies like this in my opinion.

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

You really think Canon would say anything about getting a DPR Gold Award? I personally highly doubt it and have never noticed any mention of DPR opinions in their press materials.
As for tests, you don't have to believe their conclusions. They post their images for all to see. So do many other sites. I would never use only one site to draw a conclusion, but if you interpret the images from several and see the same pattern I think you can believe what you see. Scores, awards, ratings, stars are all junk. When the picture hits the pixel is where it counts.

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (6 months ago)

I'm sure this is an excellent camera but it doesn't seem to really excel in anything except maybe AF. That's fine, but if this gets the gold, what would a real breakthrough camera get? (This is not a "fan" issue; I own Elphs, Rebels, G1X, EOS-M and 5D3.)

Even if it produces results nearly identical to the D7100--and I'm sure it does, to everyone except Nikon fans--that just means both are above average.

2 upvotes
Photomonkey
By Photomonkey (6 months ago)

What it really means is that by objective standards it is an excellent camera. The fact that most are bored with it says more about us than it says about the camera.

4 upvotes
Jim in Hudson
By Jim in Hudson (6 months ago)

I don't think people are "bored" with the lack of live view during continuous shooting. Instead, they'd be really on their toes trying to figure out where to aim the camera.

1 upvote
SDPharm
By SDPharm (6 months ago)

> I'm sure this is an excellent camera but it doesn't seem to really excel in anything except maybe AF. That's fine, but if this gets the gold, what would a real breakthrough camera get?

A camera can have a breakthrough technology and still be unusable due to many reasons. Look at Blackmagic, breakthrough IQ, but battery only lasts 30 min, among other problems.

0 upvotes
armandino
By armandino (5 months ago)

well it does have a breakthrough tech and it does not have real flaws so the blackmagic example does not fit. Actually I do not see flaws at all but trimmed down specs to leave room for the 7DMKII. Canon best care has always been avoiding cannibalization of its own products (see D800 vs D3X).
It deserves the gold to me as the sole innovative DSLR in a while.

0 upvotes
Will Gerrits
By Will Gerrits (6 months ago)

In 2013 when everything electronic is minimizing , compare cellphones in 2005 and now, in the department handling there should be more focus on size. In that aspect this Canon is big, very big. Moreover if you consider the enthusiast photographer is not carrying just a single (zoom)lens but a few lenses : the size and the weight you have to carry around for a longer time is a problem that's not taking into account in this review. Please DPReview addept your reviewing aspects to 2013 -2020 standards and don't stay in the low 2000's

1 upvote
vapentaxuser
By vapentaxuser (6 months ago)

To be fair...one of the editors (forgive me if I forget who it was), posted an article back in August or September basically saying that they no longer lug around their DSLR because there are so many compelling compact alternatives.

But outside of your assessment of the level of awareness of the editors, I agree with what you're saying. A lot of people (including me) aren't interested in lugging around a big camera like the 70D anymore. If I go for a dayhike, I would rather take a G15/G16 or a Rebel SL1.

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

Please explain why small is always better. My dad was looking for a new video camera and was dismayed by the fact that so many of them were so incredibly tiny that they were hard to hold and control, not to mention how little real estate there was for controls.
DPR is fine and they really don't need to change their perspective when evaluating the size of a camera because this truly is one time when tiny isn't always the best option. People have hold these cameras for a long time, change orientation, use buttons quickly and have various options for controls like wheels and joysticks, balance the body against long lenses, maybe use controls when wearing gloves, want big screens, love having big and bright pentaprism viewfinders....etc.
One can choose a very small and light kit even with a larger body or they can take a backpack full of big, heavy stuff. Get over yourself.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

For the record I love using my somewhat small G1 X and my pretty large 7D. I'm young(ish) and have larger male hands. I can control either camera with equal dexterity and enjoy LCD shooting and viewfinder shooting. I use my iPhone when necessary. All considered, I can shoot for hours on end with my 7D and not even notice that I'm using a camera. I'm not tired and I never once have to think about or get annoyed by the controls.

1 upvote
rickyred
By rickyred (6 months ago)

I Carrie around a 7D and a 35-350 with tripod. A good after market strap system makes it bearable. I like how chunky the 7D fits in your hand and balances out a heavy lens.

0 upvotes
Jim in Hudson
By Jim in Hudson (6 months ago)

Despite all the miniaturization going on, hands aren't getting any smaller.

15 upvotes
Will Gerrits
By Will Gerrits (6 months ago)

It's not the size of your hands that's depicts the size of the camera. Not anymore. For long it was the stuff that went into the camera : rolls of 35 mm film an everything else you needed to get a decent picture. We don't use film anymore. So why still size our camera's for it. The sensor and everything else to make a decent picture with it ?! But why the sensor has to be the size of an oldfashioned film format ? 2013 : merely no difference in output between APSc and full-frame 4/3's. Depth of field aside.

0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

Why minimizing? If that's what matters, why not just use your smartphone? If you shoot action with a fast tele prime or fast tele zoom you need stability of a larger body. If you shoot portraits you need very fast midtele primes, also requries a good stable body. If you shoot ladscapes for real you need all DR and pixels you can get. If one only shoots candids of people in parties and landscapes in trips, one does not need a dslr, that's it. Why does every maker have to follow the "small is beautiful" mantra? This is the one party line that m43 and nex users keep proagating in these forums and that DPR now and then follow as well.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
SDPharm
By SDPharm (6 months ago)

> Please explain why small is always better.

You are putting words in people's mouth. Nobody said small is ALWAYS better. In fact, what Will said was too big and too heavy is not good, and size should be considered. That's not the same as saying small is always better.

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

I was at B&H in NYC yesterday and one observation was that the overwhelming majority people carrying cameras had either a Canon and Nikon DSLR.

And as usual, the most crowed sections were the Nikon and Canon DSLR kiosks.

So I'm beginning to think that this near constant talk small size, and complaints about "large, and heavy DSLRs" is just something mirrorless fans say to highlight their favorite brands.

Camera size/weight only really impacts portability. And miniaturization in cameras more often than not negatively impacts usability and ergonomics.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

SDPharm, look at his most recent response. He thinks we're sizing cameras to match the size of old 35mm systems. My fully manual OM2000 35mm was tiny. It had zero features other than a light meter.
He has a fundamental lack of understanding of what requires space. Larger sensor typically requires a larger camera. You can get plenty of tiny cameras that take really good pictures, but they have small sensors. Fast cameras need memory, processors, room for a large battery, a place for AF sensors, a pentaprism viewfinder (or even room for the EVF), and yes even room for the mirror box (in this case) that makes the high-performance off-sensor traditional PDAF sensors so useful. Nothing is being done just to have a bigger camera, unless you are talking about putting a second grip on something like the 1D X, but even then a lot of the bulk is because of needing a larger battery, high-performance mirror/shutter, FF sensor, tons of on board processors and memory to move data.

0 upvotes
David Goodwin
By David Goodwin (6 months ago)

I prefer they compare apples to apples. Its like comparing a Jeep to a Mini. Each has its niche and is better in certain situations.

Id expect most SLRs to come in around the same weight and that they should never be compared to compacts or mirrorless units in terms of handling and feel. Not for a review of technical abilities.

0 upvotes
Will Gerrits
By Will Gerrits (5 months ago)

@ marike 6
You know as well as me that the fact that the majority of people are running to Nikon and Canon-stands doesn't mean these are better camera's !!! The main difference between Canon/Nikon and the other brands that are as good or sometimes even better is not the quality of the stuff they make it's much better marketing. They did that right from the beginning. A brandname is hard to get but hard to loose either.

Comment edited 48 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Jogger
By Jogger (6 months ago)

i was at a book signing/talk a few days ago and the firm they used to capture the interview were shooting video on Canon APSc DSLRs with big white L lenses. that market is gonna eat this up. .. i.e. they want APSc quality video but the ease of use of auto AF.

0 upvotes
NiklaiN
By NiklaiN (6 months ago)

Why the hell don't you compenzate the underexposed nikon d7100 test pic?
I know, you guys like cannon but they don't need these kind of advantage...

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

Please be more specific. Which shot do you think is underexposed?

3 upvotes
Mike99999
By Mike99999 (6 months ago)

The E-P5 shot is slightly out of focus (if you compare to the identical E-PL5 and E-M5).

Just admit already that you're being paid to botch the results in favor of Canon.

0 upvotes
armandino
By armandino (5 months ago)

so is the flawed D600 getting top marks? Did DPR favour canon then? The issues were so bad that Nikon hurried up to get a brand new model in one year, screwing the D600 owners instead of fixing the problem, just move on ;-)

0 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

So more or less as well reviewed as the D7100 or EM-1 mainly due to an emphasis on LiveView AF and the new Dual Pixel AF module relevant mainly for video and LiveView with the 2 STM lenses.

No weather sealing, no 100% Pentaprism VF or dual SD cards. And most puzzling is how easily IQ differences vs a class leading camera like the D7100 can be explained away or marginalized with phrases like "in most situations" or "for the majority of users", "the difference in IQ are slight". Really? Most enthusiast users of this class of camera shoot RAW and edit in LR where the latitude of files or RAW headroom are extremely important.

Don't get me wrong, the 70D is a nice camera and Canon is a great system, but when all the cameras get Gold Awards with similar scores in spite of some key differences, it makes these reviews less specific, less useful for researching cameras than they could be.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
38 upvotes
armandino
By armandino (6 months ago)

this camera has some truly innovative features, while the others not. Dual Pixel makes video taking with an dslr for the first time convenient and effective without the focusing challenging job. I think it will be huge. The advantages in the other cameras are marginal being a must only for a few. As usual I think Canon makes probably a duller camera but most compelling.

Comment edited 57 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

"Mainly" due to this or relevant to that? The DP PDAF capability used along with an STM lens is the ideal combinatin, but by no means the only meaningful or useful combination.
"No weather sealing"? Look at page 4. 98% pentaprism not bright enough or large enough for you? Who gives a flying leap about dual SD cards?
Your conception of this camera and ability to place it in context of its competition is skewed, and it sounds like that is due to some very warm feelings about the D7100 or EM-1 that have features that you find more important than some the 70D offers.
Placing those cameras side by side in RAW and it is obvious that image quality differences are indeed marginal. The small difference in megapixels gives the D7100 no clear advantage.

3 upvotes
Elaka Farmor
By Elaka Farmor (6 months ago)

And of cause it has the cool and useful 3x optical crop mode in movie recording at 1080p (just like 600D)! And 60p 1080! No, I´m joking, of cause it has not.

0 upvotes
Photomonkey
By Photomonkey (6 months ago)

So, everybody is unimpressed by where we are today in cameras. It must drive the manufacturers nuts trying to make the "average DPR user" happy. The fact that they don't come out with over the top new designs on a monthly basis seems to be cause for great outrage. I foresee a lot of unhappiness in the DPR user world as some wait for perfection( as they see it ) to arrive.

Comment edited 37 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
Adrian Van
By Adrian Van (6 months ago)

This camera's greatest strength is its video autofocus with on sensor PDAF and rotating screen. Image quality while very good, is still not as good as D7100 which this review mentions. FF cameras are better, but then again, FF bodies are almost twice the price for a 6D or D610 and lenses can be more and bigger. For APSC, this camera can still take great photos with the right technique and right lenses, and small difference in ranking may become less important compared to D7100.

D7100 still has a lots of great features different than this one, and great image quality, but no rotating screen. Not totally apples to apples as some features are simply different. So it is up to us which is better for us.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
bcalkins
By bcalkins (6 months ago)

I'd be surprised if you could find a significant difference in images taken with the 70D and the D7100 (or the E-M1) in the hands of most buyers of these cameras... There will be differences to be sure - but not significant ones, in my opinion.

0 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

there is no differences for most people, only to some , and even there, I did test the 7100, which is great, but I don't see any differences on my monitor.
Lots of Nikon people over here, and its a Canon camera that scored 83% , why so much complaints?
You guys should be happy you got a great Nikon camera, why all these nonsense battles?
No one wins, there is no war!
gee...

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

> there is no differences for most people

There are significant differences that are relevant for a large number of enthusiasts. Canon forum users are quite actively discussing sensor technology as it relates to RAW processing and therefore overall IQ. To say they don't care or even notice difference is almost an insult to Canon photographers.

DxOMark, a testing site DPR collaborates with, also notices the IQ differences in their tests. The 68 overall score for the 70D, which is actually lower than some m43 cameras (something that should never happen for a just released APS-C camera).

The point is when DPR relies on well worn phrases like "for the majority of users IQ differences are slight" they make a huge assumption about Canon users, most of whom are actually RAW shooters who absolutely care about raw headroom and the latest high DR cameras.

Why bother even testing IQ at all only to later sugarcoat differences between cameras based on an assumption about "most users"?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
armandino
By armandino (5 months ago)

Canon might be a bit behind in dynamic range, but by no means the sensor sucks. I find DxOMark designed to generate a huge spread in the sensor scoring which is not reflected in the everyday life, i.e. if a sensor scores 65% another 90% the second sensor is not 25% better. Canon raw files are fine.

1 upvote
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

Guys, DxO scores are not percentages. There is also no scale on which they exist. They are arbitrary numbers created by combining other arbitrary numbers in an arbitrary formula under arbitrary light in Arbitrary, Cananda. DxO scores mean less than nothing. Look at each test and see what you think about the differences. Look at pictures and see if you can tell.

0 upvotes
Adrian Van
By Adrian Van (6 months ago)

Canon, please put your on sensor PDAF in the next version of 6D or 5D mark4, and include at least 2 memory card slots for video use like D7100 or higher in Nikon line. For hobbyists or enthusiasts, one slot is okay, but for professionals 2 slots needed, and this type of sensor tech should be on Full Frame. Most professionals would prefer 2 card slots for backup or dual video record.
SD cards can fail, which will not work for professional work as we would only get one shot at getting the moment on paid video. Is Canon protecting its higher Pro camera line (and Pro Camcorders) with limitations on models like this?
Sony A99 already has continuous autofocus in live video in a FF camera, Canon and Nikon should have on sensor PDAF in their next FullFrame camera models. This could boost sales in Pro DSLRs in our current sales climate, attracting new videographers and upgraders in DSLR.
Good to see the new sensor tech in DSLRs though! Good start from Canon and Sony.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (6 months ago)

I think all new Canon APS-C and 35mm format sensors will have dual-pixel AF and would like to see if it go down to 1/1.7" for compacts.

1 upvote
Adrian Van
By Adrian Van (6 months ago)

Just wondering how long it will take Nikon or Canon to put one in a full frame camera. Their current models are only a year old or so. Does that mean will have to wait a year or two for the next generation models (PDAF on sensor) in full frame. Would that concern Canon with Pro Camcorder sales taking some hits. Pro Camcorder now with larger aps-c sensors at entry pro level (see Sonys models like Nex EA50UH, still better/faster for dedicated video for long term events but come at a higher price, but not if you start adding lenses and accessories. In my opinion.

0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

Nikon has supposedly commissioned Aptina to develop a FF sensor with the Nikon 1 PDAF tech. It's not going to get long before a camera comes out with it (my guess: later next year).

1 upvote
Adrian Van
By Adrian Van (5 months ago)

Good to know. Thanks. If this FF is good for Nikon, might update my D700 at last.

0 upvotes
Donnie G
By Donnie G (6 months ago)

Thanks for the thorough review DPR. Your conclusions at review's end pretty much sum up my reasons for making the 70D my next camera purchase. While many of the camera designers who post here are convinced that this camera isn't worth buying simply because Canon didn't try to cram every new techno toy available into the design, I, on the other hand, appreciate the company's disciplined approach to camera design. The camera has a very well thought out feature set that doesn't rely solely on gimmicks and gadgets to meet the needs of a wide range of users, including those like me, who finance their hobby through paid assignments that rarely involve delivering prints larger than 11x14 inches, and, who may dabble in video from time to time if good (sales worthy) results are easy to achieve. It helps too that Canon sticks to a user interface design theme that doesn't require me to learn the camera all over again with each body upgrade. The 70D wins my wallet vote easily. :)

16 upvotes
Jim in Hudson
By Jim in Hudson (6 months ago)

I read many of the posts but admittedly not every one. Anyone know if the Sigma 18-35 lens used was micro-AF adjusted first? If it wasn't, what would be the point of comparing conventional PDAF to on-sensor focusing?

Comment edited 26 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

I agree with your comment, the result is way worse than anything I have seen comparing usual PDAF with LV AF in any camera, once you AF-microtune lens.

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

The conclusions should have looked more like this.

Pros:
It is a Canon camera

Cons:

Outstanding image Quality for a sensor using 4 year old technology.

Dynamic Range that a compact camera would be proud of.

Battery life that equals its competition when in the off position.

Inventive new Auto Focus that delivers almost as good auto focus as the original Mirrorless cameras

Enables Canon to make a profit by requiring you to rebuy all new versions of your lenses.

22 upvotes
vapentaxuser
By vapentaxuser (6 months ago)

How does the sensor use 4 year old technology? It debuted with this camera.

10 upvotes
neo_nights
By neo_nights (6 months ago)

Judging by DxO's scores, that sensor seems very to the old one.
http://www.dxomark.com/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/%28appareil1%29/895|0/%28brand%29/Canon/%28appareil2%29/870|0/%28brand2%29/Canon/%28appareil3%29/663|0/%28brand3%29/Canon

3 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (6 months ago)

Did you actually just say out loud "judging by DxO's scores"? LOL

10 upvotes
neo_nights
By neo_nights (6 months ago)

@ howardroark - I have seen actual image comparisons between Pentax K5 and Canon 5d Mk II. Guess which camera had better DR?

People do not like DxO which is fine by me. But is there any other website out there that has a standarized methodology for measuring sensors' capabilities?

7 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

The 70D uses the new technology for Auto Focus. The portion that actually captures the image is 4 year old technology.

3 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

You don't need DxO mark, just look at samples and compare performance with a, say, 40D.

0 upvotes
Mike99999
By Mike99999 (6 months ago)

If you look at the provided samples, the sensor is being beat by sensors one quarter of the size.

1 upvote
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

Mike9....I'd love you to tell me which small sensor is beating it.

Neo....which one and by how much and is that the only thing you're concerned with? Measurements are one thing, scores are another. There are quite a few measurements I pay attention to, but their scores are like a 4 year old scribbling on a wall with chalk. Their measurements in some cases are suspect, but I look at test images to see if differences are meaningful.

0 upvotes
Rbrt
By Rbrt (6 months ago)

Would be nice to have the 6D available in the Studio Scene. Maybe it's coming? I know they are in a different class, but helps when you're trying to figure out the extra benefit from the extra cost.

1 upvote
JimBob0
By JimBob0 (6 months ago)

Is anyone here a real photographer? You know, someone who actually takes good photographs? Or does everyone just argue about minor specification details that no one will ever see or notice in a photograph?

I'm beginning to worry that too many commentators can only take a good photograph if they have the very best camera to do it rather than actually having the skill or talent to take a good photo in the first place.

Too many dull nerds here.

6 upvotes
Bjorn_L
By Bjorn_L (6 months ago)

Apparently you missed the point of a camera review. It is evaluate a camera not the photographer.

12 upvotes
Interestingness
By Interestingness (6 months ago)

True that JimBob0. What I do is if someone here has an especially negative comment (about any piece of equipment) the first thing I do is click on their profile and check out their photo gallery. Tells me everything I need to know. Vast majority of those times there isn't anything in the gallery nor a link their personal work. Wonder why that is?

Seriously folks - if you cannot take an award winning photo with ANY brand camera and lens I'll let you in on a secret - it's not the gear.

5 upvotes
vapentaxuser
By vapentaxuser (6 months ago)

I don't think there's been camera announcement within the past year where someone hasn't gone into the comments section and declared the camera "junk" or "trash". Especially the smaller sensored ones.

But at the same time, people are right to level criticism towards camera companies for charging significantly more money for cameras that are only minor refreshes over their predecessors (this is especially true in the enthusiast compact segment right now). Camera companies are shooting themselves in the foot by getting greedy in a buyer's market.

0 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (6 months ago)

You need to know about cooking, but you don't need to be a great chef to be a great restaurant critic.

0 upvotes
rickyred
By rickyred (6 months ago)

Ill bet the 70D is a wonderful camera and a huge improvement on the 60D. The one thing I miss the most using my great 7D is the flippy screen from the 60D. And besides, where can you get a camera like the 70D for the price asked?

1 upvote
Interestingness
By Interestingness (6 months ago)

Good point Gesture. Having said that, if a restaurant critic reviews a restaurant and it's 99% overall as good as his/her favourite does that critic slam the restaurant saying how bad it is and all all should stay away?

Another couple of ways of looking at this...

1) I'm middle aged and my physique was doing the middle age thing so I joined a gym a couple of years ago and work out 3-5 times a week. Do I slam the gym because I don't look like a professional bodybuilder? Do I change gyms because my gym uses 'Weight Brand A' when the competition uses 'Weight Brand B' and the latest reviews say 'Weight Brand B' slides on the bar minutely better than what my gym uses?

2) I can't play guitar. Give me the worlds best and a pro some cheap thing from Best Buy. Who do you think will play better? Do I complain about the strings on the worlds best guitar because my non-ability to play well?

Laugh, because this is like the mentality of sooo many of the (most vocal) commenter's here.

0 upvotes
roustabout66
By roustabout66 (6 months ago)

I have noticed that the more emphasis people put on specifications and minutia, the less likely they are to show ANY photos...no less interesting ones.

1 upvote
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

The Panasonic GH2 was rightfully BLASTED for having very poor dynamic range. Why isn't this camera blasted as well? It isn't even up to the much smaller sensor standards.

13 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

I really miss the days when Canon would put out a new camera and everyone would sing its praises and not just the people getting paid to review it.

7 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

Is it just me or is Canon held to a different standard than every other company?

5 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

Other people also think that. They're equally wrong.

We review cameras, not companies.

We provide all our test samples and a collection of our real-world shooting examples. We also try to explicitly state all the aspects we think are good or bad about a camera (note 'camera' not 'sensor').

If you disagree with our conclusions, that's fine - we intentionally try to provide the basis for you to draw your own.

All the howls of protest about the 70D being inferior appear to stem from its sensor getting a lower DxOmark than its peers. Almost all of this difference comes down to DR (and accounts for the lower Raw IQ score in our review). However, the 70D also offers better video and live view AF than many of its rivals and is a very nice camera to shoot with (both factors that are relevant to a camera review but not a sensor assessment).

It would get the same mark, regardless of the brand name on the front.

8 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

I want to believe you. However, the conclusions seem to be much harder on Mirrorless cameras than on Canons.

It seems like the conclusions put a HUGE emphasis on Image Quality for m4/3s where it has been weakest in the past. Then image quality is thrown out the window for the 70D because it has a tricky new AF feature.

I know you guys try to remain unbiased. However, I want Canon to realize that the image quality is important as well. There has been no real significant image quality change in 4 years while their competition has caught up and passed them.

The AF in the 70D is cool. However, my GH3 has had that for almost a year now. It also has better image quality along with MANY other features that the 70D was praised for. The GH3 received a much lower score and that was back when NO other cameras offered these features.

It just seems like the only thing Mirrorless can do to get the same score is lower their standards and re-badge a Canon camera. I hope that never happens.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
6 upvotes
onlooker
By onlooker (6 months ago)

> is a very nice camera to shoot with

That is a greatly underappreciated quality. Cameras today are so good, that in addition to a good lens selection (which Canon certainly has), enjoyable operation could sway the buyer.

1 upvote
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

@mpgxsvcd - I would certainly like to think that's not the case. As a generalised statement, mirrorless cameras are still in development, whereas DSLRs (regardless of brand) have been around long enough that they get most of the basics right - it's the stuff 'round the edges that distinguishes them.

The GH3 is a very good camera and got a very good review, but I'm not sure I'd agree it has better image quality. The 70D doesn't match the D7100 and in some respects loses out to the E-M1, but the differences are not huge (certainly not to the extent that's being argued about) and the rest of the camera is very well worked-out.

2 upvotes
whtchocla7e
By whtchocla7e (6 months ago)

This camera is revolutionary. It's a technological marvel. Whole books will be written about it; children will gaze at it in astonishment; women will kneel before it. It will be mentioned in the same breath as the Great Pyramids, the Sputnik, and the Ferrari F40. It will open the door to time travel. It will be divisible by zero. But one question still remains... does it focus in -3 EV?

10 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

I think Dpreview gives out more "Gold Stars" than a 60 year old Kindergarten teacher. Next they will probably start grading everyone on a 4 point system where no one ever gets a 1 or a 4 and you only get a 2 if you really screwed up in a major way.

7 upvotes
AlpCns2
By AlpCns2 (6 months ago)

And your proposed (more) scientific methodology is?

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

They should just scrap the whole Gold/Silver Star system. It is meaningless to rate cameras on a scale from 1 to 2.

9 upvotes
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (6 months ago)

Yes, almost every recent camera is excellent. Why is this a problem?

2 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

It isn't a problem that every camera is excellent. It is a problem trying to differentiate those cameras on a scale of 1 to 2.

2 upvotes
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (6 months ago)

You are assuming there is a meaningful differentiation that would universally apply to all DPR readers. Gold/Silver/stars/percentages are popular and they have exactly whatever meaning you wish to assign them.

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

@Erik,

Then the ratings are meaningless and everyone has based their impressions on their own imagination.

0 upvotes
Bjorn_L
By Bjorn_L (6 months ago)

Strange that DPR seems at odds with DXOs measurements. For example DR. DXO says it is poor, you say it is good. Are you or are you not partnered with DXO?

DXO's results say this sensor is about the same as the rather ancient 50d.

Canon Canon Canon
70d 60d 50d
overall 68 66 63
Color bit 22.5 22.2 21.8
DR evs 11.6 11.5 11.4
ISO 926 813 696

This is 0.7 bits more color detail, 0.2 Evs more DR and less then 1/3rd stop better in ISO.

Lagging well behind every current offering from Sony, Pentax and Nikon. Even the smaller sensor Olympus OM-D E-M1 and Panasonic GH3 best it in every category except ISO (where the Canon has a 1/7th to 1/5th stop advantage, which is fairly trivial compared to the difference between the 70d and its "same sized sensor" peers.

I am impressed by many details about the 70d and by the camera as a whole, but some of your comments are baffling.

26 upvotes
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (6 months ago)

DXO does not say the DR is "poor" - they say base ISO DR is lower than other models in the same price range. But by ISO 400 the difference is gone. In real world shooting, is the 70D "good?" If another camera is "better" do you know the visible difference?

5 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (6 months ago)

DxO analyzes unconverted (undemosaiced) raw files, to get around the processing of any specific software, and get as close to the hardware performance as possible, whereas DPR analyzes converted images, both out-of-camera JPEGs and raws converted to JPEG in ACR. Looking at raw values or looking at final images, they are two different approaches, not necessarily directly comparable.

0 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

@bjorn

Hey, I see that you shoot Nikon
Did you ever tried a Canon?
Before going only by those scores, try one before talking.
I have tried the D7100, loved it.
Specially the viewfinder which is GREAT, when I checked the images on my monitor, they was no difference with my Canon 5dmkII in normal situation, bright sun, did some test where it was dark on one side and sunny on the other part of the frame, and there was NO difference at all.
What I love bout the D7100 also is that kind mojo it has.
The pics looks a bit more alive, but I can't put my finger on it.
Maybe its the amount details do to a big megapixels camera.

But even there, Its hard to really tell em apart.
So before you conclude that one brand is not as great, try and shoot with one, you'll see.I do great pics, and my Nikon friends love my camera, its just like PC vs Mac, its just a different toy,

0 upvotes
Bjorn_L
By Bjorn_L (5 months ago)

@Segaman
I shot Canon DSLR and film bodies and Minolta DSLRs and film bodies before I shot Nikon.
I was a reluctant Nikon convert as I had glass for other mounts and friends who shot mostly Canon.

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (6 months ago)

I think Canon got a "Gold Star" simply for effort here. It didn't matter how good the camera actually is. Dpreview wants to reward manufactures who take a risk in coming out with inventive products like this one.

I simply care about whether it takes good pictures and videos or not. I am sure it does. However, pretty much everything else does that now and some other cameras cost a lot less.

3 upvotes
Frederik Paul
By Frederik Paul (6 months ago)

Use Canon DPP for raw development and apply some chroma NR and the 70D gets closer to the D7100. But some people will never get this…

2 upvotes
Zoom71
By Zoom71 (6 months ago)

Use Canon DPP if you like artifacts...

3 upvotes
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (6 months ago)

You see DPP artifacts if you pixel-peep at 100%. Do you see them if you print? You always have to ask why are you peeping.

3 upvotes
Ahender
By Ahender (6 months ago)

Not sure I have ever read a DPR camera review that did not list anything about image quality in the pros and cons.

"Dual Pixel AF does not allow tracking autofocus while shooting continuously."

So no AISERVO? Wow.

2 upvotes
Rbrt
By Rbrt (6 months ago)

Why have so few camera makers moved to USB 3.0? There must be either a technical or cost factor. Anybody?

0 upvotes
rrccad
By rrccad (6 months ago)

requires more power, cables are a shorter length, plugs are finicky are my personal gripes on usb 3.0

3 upvotes
Rbrt
By Rbrt (6 months ago)

Thanks! I haven't found the plugs finicky on my computer but wasn't aware of the other limitations.

0 upvotes
Impulses
By Impulses (6 months ago)

Plus there's the fact that the storage controller would have to be fast enough for USB 3.0 to matter... I imagine a few of them on higher end cameras might be able to provide enough bandwith for USB 2.0 to be a bottleneck, but they're probably few and far between (and more than likely optimized for fast sequential writing over anything else, like random reading).

There's still a lot of cameras that don't write anywhere near fast enough for the fastest 90MB/s+ UHS-I cards to make a difference... That's about the point where USB 2.0 starts to be a big bottleneck (you can get 40MB/s read/write out of USB 2.0). It's pretty trivial to use a USB 3.0 reader for faster offload to a PC anyway, Kingston makes a tiny one with retractable ports for like $12.

Most burst shooting is done to a buffer first then offloaded to SD storage anyway... This is the same reason you don't see USB 3.0 on phones btw, just wouldn't make much of a difference given the speed of flash NAND within those devices... Plus the bigger/bulkier connector might be a bit of a step back, though eventually it'll be preferred for faster charging as batteries (and some phones) get larger.

2 upvotes
Rbrt
By Rbrt (6 months ago)

Good point re the storage controller but if Kingston can do it for $12...

USB 3.0 connector on my computer is same size the USB 2.1 connector on the same machine. They have to be compatible.

0 upvotes
qianp2k
By qianp2k (6 months ago)

buy a USB 3.0 card reader that is pretty cheap.

0 upvotes
Lab D
By Lab D (6 months ago)

I had the pleasure to use one for a week and focusing was very good during videos. The review is very similar to my thoughts, so good job!
The only thing I did not like was having to hold the larger heavy camera away from your body while in video mode or using live view.
I also found the sensor to be good enough for most uses and not an issue.

3 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (6 months ago)

Any way for a VF to be OVF or EVF? Manufacturers never really pursued heads-up display for the OVF. Is Fuji the only one?

0 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

Great camera, great article.
I had the chance to try it, and yes its lovely.
The focus on video mode is really good.
Not my cup of tea, but a lot of people like to do videos.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

Why use a film era 85mm portrait lens that seems to be front focusing and a third party EF mount lens at or near their minimum focus distances to test the AF system?

By shooting even a high grade modern EF lens at close focus distances you've already introduced one possible source of focussing error. Adding an older EF lens or a notoriously inaccurate large aperture Sigma zoom into the equation makes the AF accuracy test questionable at best.

3 upvotes
MrTaikitso
By MrTaikitso (6 months ago)

In a first for me, (been on DPreview for years), am going to knock this review: 1) I had been waiting for the 70D to consider against a GX7 or equiv Nikon or Sony APS-C to use for video and prosumer stills photography. 2) Finally got to play with one in a UK store. Although the new auto focus system and the articulating display are effective, I found the build quality to feel rough and plasticy in contrast to other lesser priced cameras (Pentax included), the ergonomics were awful (had to use two hands in a convoluted fashion to make an adjustment to the ISO) and the video does not shoot at 50/60fps - priceless for freeze framing, as I could do on my Sony NEX 5R. Further & most important: 3), other users and blog reviews conclude that the 70D image quality is nothing special.

What bothers me is that this DPreview fails to mention the mediocre IQ and praises the ergonomics. A direct contrast to my own experience and that of others.

Why?

7 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

Not to me, everything is fine.
On the other hand i tried a nikon d7100 and its a lovely camera but the feel is very different, not deep enough or not ergo to my hands.
Is canon made in japan and nikon made in china?
That would explain a lot of things....

1 upvote
Nerval
By Nerval (6 months ago)

Actually both Canon and Nikon assemble parts of their cameras in China and depending on the model you get a camera whose parts have more or less traveled through Taiwan, Malaysia, China...
If you really put a Canon 1100D or 700D through its pace, well you probably would not be that much impressed by built quality...
And the ergonomics part, well Canon has more or less always stuck to a certain design, you like it or you don't that's subjective. Regarding IQ, that's true, Canon APSC sensors are lagging a tad behind at the moment... Less DR, lower SNR... That does not mean the quality is Mediocre.
Actually past ISO 800 there's only a third of a stop difference with Sony sensors, and at ISO 3200 the performance is almost similar.
I don't believe DPreview is much biased for Canon. The camera gets praised because Canon did a good job investing in their Video-DSLR feature, and yielded a good product.

7 upvotes
rrccad
By rrccad (6 months ago)

if it takes you two hands to change the ISO on the 70D .. then obviously a DSLR isn't for you.

6 upvotes
CFynn
By CFynn (6 months ago)

The Nikon D7100 is made in Thailand

0 upvotes
Toccata47
By Toccata47 (6 months ago)

Never been a fan of m4/3 cameras, but the new olympus seems to be close enough in the studio scene to be indistinguishable for everyday use.

2 upvotes
tabloid
By tabloid (6 months ago)

This Canon dual pixel sensor would be great in my Sony A65.
They were made for each other.

0 upvotes
Jun2
By Jun2 (6 months ago)

why? It's no better than current contrast AF

Comment edited 58 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (6 months ago)

It's better than current contrast AF for lenses not designed for fast CDAF -- hich would include all A-mount lenses like those that fit the OP's A65.

0 upvotes
Boky
By Boky (6 months ago)

Photos at all ISO settings, raw or jpeg, look worse than Nikon D7100. And with regard to Canon AF servo when taking standard photos, I KNOW canon can still NOT provide consistent and accurate focus with anything but a single lens paired with body.

This camera to get DPreview praises is borderline criminal.

Nick

6 upvotes
Gabebalazs
By Gabebalazs (5 months ago)

70D jpeg actually looks better, not just to me but anyone I talked to. In RAW the 7100 is better by a bit.
As for the AI Servo shots... with all due respect, where the heck did you get your info??? Check out Michael the Mentor's video on Youtube performing thorough AI Servo tests (shooting over 1500 images), where the 70D clearly beats the D7100 in tracking moving subjects. The keeper rate is not even close. And let's not even mention the difference in buffer capacity.
Here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bOM4r1gxsbs

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Sdaniella
By Sdaniella (6 months ago)

u have touch to focus videos mislabeled:
top one is noisy, yet mislabelled STM lens
bottom on is quiet, yet mislabeled USM lens

0 upvotes
meland
By meland (6 months ago)

Pardon?

0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

The IQ, even in RAW, is not that good, regarding detail. Since DR has not improved on Canon sensors in the last 5-6 years, I can't see other than already Canon users interested, if stills is the main thing. THis camera seems a good option for those interested in video but then some ML options area actually better.

One thing though: I find the difference in AF between OVF and LV too much in the samples. I have tested my D7000 (which is really slow in LV) and there's a little differnece, but not that much, once you calibrate your lenses. One neeeds to take a series of shots, since even in LV there are variations in AF accuracy, as Cicala has observed in his tests of Canons and Nikons.

DSLRs will need to go hybrid with better off-sensor AF, and my guess is that will happen with Nikon and their Nikon 1 PDAF system.

5 upvotes
NetMage
By NetMage (6 months ago)

Canon made a huge leap in sensor noise from the 50D era to the 60D era and that made for an effective DR increase.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
onlooker
By onlooker (6 months ago)

> The IQ, even in RAW, is not that good, regarding detail

Wait, it is practically indistinguishable from the D7100 in the comparison tool. Are you saying D7100's detail sucks?

3 upvotes
Vegasus
By Vegasus (6 months ago)

Dear Dpreview, When you say, complicated wifi setup, is that the same with dos 6D?

0 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (6 months ago)

complicated for the usual low IQ user here at dpreview. ;-)

not complicated when you have a clue about wireless connections.

1 upvote
Sordid
By Sordid (6 months ago)

So... It indeed IS complicated for you, Henry?

0 upvotes
Zoom71
By Zoom71 (6 months ago)

Softness everywhere... Typical Canon agressive noise reduction even at base ISO.

1 upvote
photofan1986
By photofan1986 (6 months ago)

At least we don't have oil everywhere :D

3 upvotes
Andrew53
By Andrew53 (6 months ago)

D600:

I AM BROKEN

1 upvote
sandy b
By sandy b (6 months ago)

AND I AM STILL BETTER

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

It's called RAW, look in to it.

0 upvotes
Lawrencew
By Lawrencew (6 months ago)

I still can't believe that wifi can't be used in movie mode.
Such a straightforward thing (you would have thought) is putting me off buying this otherwise great camera.
I just want to be able to remotely trigger and monitor videos.
Dumb, dumb, dumb...

1 upvote
IchiroCameraGuy
By IchiroCameraGuy (6 months ago)

What cameras let you do this over Wi-Fi?

0 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (6 months ago)

I doubt wifi module on any camera got enough bandwidth to stream 1080p. Not to mention that it's unreliable even with high end PC equipment.

0 upvotes
Anfy
By Anfy (6 months ago)

I know it has been asked before, but could you (DPReview) make four cameras - and not just two - to appear on the (new) Studio Comparison page?
It is a bit annoying to read the differences between the 70D and the D7100, then the E-M1 (so we have to manually switch to that camera), then again the D7100 (another switch) and so on, why are them all not displayed at the same time like in the old tool?

Ciao!

Comment edited 14 seconds after posting
7 upvotes
Andy Crowe
By Andy Crowe (6 months ago)

If you go to the studio comparison's standalone page (reviews > new studio scene) you get four so it definitely supports it, DPR must be cutting it down to 2 to save space on the page maybe?

DPR how about an expand button on the bottom of the 2 panel widget to add another 2 cameras to it?

2 upvotes
meland
By meland (6 months ago)

I stumbled onto this page. Can't remember quite how but I have to say I'm amazed. Amazed that so many have the time to be so angry about a thing that's just a tool for taking pictures. Well I thought that's what it was anyway but some might think otherwise on reading this stuff.
Q: Is this more important than corrupt politicians salting away cash in offshore bank accounts? A: No
Q: Is this more important than the ice caps melting and polar bears getting too hot? A: No.
Q: Is this more important than One Direction's favourite breakfast cereal? A: No.
Some of you really, really need to get out more. If you don't like it, just don't buy it.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
20 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

The camera is great for the price, i guess some are frustrated cause their brand are not outselling Canon.
Some people gee.....
Love all brands, i would love to own at least 5 different cameras for different purposes

2 upvotes
Elaka Farmor
By Elaka Farmor (6 months ago)

I can give youy a hint why people are upset. For example, compare the 70D against E-PL5 in RAW iso 3200. Do you see any obvious visible difference? Canon is newer, more expensive, bigger sensor. I should be a clear difference in IQ, but it´s not. Why?

10 upvotes
crisotunity
By crisotunity (6 months ago)

There should be no major visible difference at ISO3200 between any modern camera, with a half-decent lens. There has been steady progress on sensors' performance, but no no earth-shaking developments over the last few years.
This is why mature markets and savvy consumers (eg Japan; young people in the West) are buying mirrorless, camera phones and Instax minis by their millions: they understand that -unless you plaster your entire wall with a photo- you will not be able to tell what's coming out of which camera. So they make purchasing decisions on size, ease of use, price, fun factor, etc.
Meanwhile, middle-aged techno-freaks are arguing over DXO marks and whether a D5200 out-resolves a 70D: a whole bunch of baldies fighting over combs.

6 upvotes
harold1968
By harold1968 (6 months ago)

I believe everyone, including politicians, should be able to put money in offshore accounts.
Polar bears are increasing in population (the greens don't tell you this) and will need to be culled.

Otherwise I agree with you, especially about one direction.

GAS and photography are different things.
I suffer from both to be honest :)

0 upvotes
senn_b
By senn_b (6 months ago)

Admittedly the conclusions of this test, as for the IQ, rise more questions than they offer reliable answers; .. can anyone say me in what respect the IQ of this stuff is any better than (let's say) 40D's one ? Where is the IQ improvement ? Did Cannon have improved the IQ any significantly since 40D in this line up of cam ?

0 upvotes
photofan1986
By photofan1986 (6 months ago)

"Score" "Dxo"' blah blah...I really wonder how many of you really compared the actual IQ instead of just relying on Dxo figures. I also wonder how we managed to go out and shoot before Dxo!

13 upvotes
lensberg
By lensberg (6 months ago)

I seriously wonder whether the "engineers" at DXO could ever design, develop & implement a sensor... considering the fact that they act like the final authority on sensor evaluation...

Never trust DXO...

4 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (6 months ago)

I seriously wonder whether the "movie critics" could ever direct, or produce a movie... considering the fact that they act like the final authority on movie evaluation...

Never trust critics...

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 30 seconds after posting
7 upvotes
photofan1986
By photofan1986 (6 months ago)

Right, I don't care about what critics say.No need to tell me what I have to think, I do it by myself.

3 upvotes
lensberg
By lensberg (6 months ago)

Indeed... sensors and moves are the same thing... I totally get your point...

Watching movies costs peanuts... so every Tom, Dick & Harry are free to formulate their own opinions...

Camera's require some level of investment... Unfortunately DXO behaves likes its the be all and end all authority on sensors... almost subconsciously coercing people to believe one brand is superior than the other based upon their scores...

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
Sordid
By Sordid (6 months ago)

Dxo is simply benchmarking and measuring equipment.
They don't need to be able to produce a good sensor, it's not their business.
And yes, Dxo IS the authority in terms of benchmarking sensors and lenses.

Do I make purchasing decision based solely on their results?
Of course not. Ergonomics are important to me. General image quality is, which includes a lot more than just the measurable resolution. But then again, I wouldn't buy a camera that scores a whole lot worse than its competitors either.

6 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

I dont trust dxo, never did, never will, i trust my eyes

3 upvotes
sandy b
By sandy b (6 months ago)

I don't trust DXO says every one whose sensors suck.

4 upvotes
lensberg
By lensberg (6 months ago)

The ones whose sensors sucks are still outselling the ones with the "class leading" sensors...

The irony of the whole thing...

0 upvotes
molnarcs
By molnarcs (6 months ago)

Sensors yes, because it's very very specific what actually they measure. But lenses? I couldn't care less about what DXO says about lenses. Well, their sharpness test might hold some value, but nothing else is taken into account - micro contrast, colour rendition, bokeh, flare resistance, etc.

1 upvote
David Elliott Lewis
By David Elliott Lewis (6 months ago)

I have been using the 70d for over a month now and really like it. It's low light performance is excellent. I have never before been able to get usable photos when shooting at ISO 6400 before this camera. I highly recommend it.

David Elliott Lewis
San Francisco.

3 upvotes
Abu Mahendra
By Abu Mahendra (6 months ago)

I get usable photos on my 650D pretty frequently.

0 upvotes
Alec_c
By Alec_c (6 months ago)

Gentlemen reviewers, can you please let us know which one of you was the (obviously poet, rather not sober reviewer) that wrote "Shooting with the Canon EOS 70D, I felt right at home. I've owned a 20D, and even so many models removed, the 70D still seems familiar. It works the way I like to..." ? I think that your 20D is turning in it's grave.
Shawn, you trickster ... that's you, isn't it?
So, if we take your review as honest, although rather worse, it is still better ... yous should be a politician!
Thanks to God ... or chance ... or local management there are so few of your reviews since 2007.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 8 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Jack Hogan
By Jack Hogan (6 months ago)

"In terms of image quality the 70D is essentially on a par with its rivals"

Who's your daddy, DPReview? Informed photographers know that the IQ of the 70D is uncompetitive today and lags a couple of generations behind that of its rivals, whether that be DR, color sensitivity or spatial resolution. Its strengths lie elsewhere.

Your readers want objective information in order to make an informed decision when buying a camera of a certain class and budget.

Q: Is this the better camera for Landscapes? A: No
Q: Is this the better camera for Portraits? A: No
Q: Is this the better camera for Wildlife/BIF? A: No
Q: Is this the better camera for Video? A: Maybe
Q: if I go for a smaller/lighter system will I lose IQ? A: It depends on the kind of shooting you do

The fact is, once you start comparing it objectively to its brothers from another mother the 70D's IQ comes out looking pretty short. Sugar coat it, but this is what your readers expect from you.

Jack

56 upvotes
BeaniePic
By BeaniePic (6 months ago)

Sounds like you've owned and used an EOS 70D for a while, I'm an early adopter of this model myself have already sold many images from it and disagree with every word you've typed. This camera out preforms older models as well as many other models on the market. Take it from someone who does this for a job, full time...

6 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (6 months ago)

The easily spotted giveaway is the "essentially on par" where it is left behind and totally other descriptive wording where it is ahead.

2 upvotes
Segaman
By Segaman (6 months ago)

@jack
The only fact is, even if you bla bla bout the weakness "in your mind" of Canon 70D, i,ve seen a lot of Nikon user saying it was one hell of a camera for the price.
And go out and shoot and will notice that in the end, you,ll see no differences on your laptop screen.

4 upvotes
Zerixos
By Zerixos (6 months ago)

Dear Segaman,

I can't agree with jack, because the D70 will be a hell of a lot easier to use during video than any other camera, and for wildlife it still will be suitable due the high frame rate. But saying it is no differences on the screen, Well, A Nikon D7100 image looks a bit sharper, even on a "laptop screen", put it on a calibrated IPS screen and the blacks and the better noice preformens pop out even more on the D7100, So the different in image quality become even more noticeable. And in the end, a lot of photographers still print there images, and you'll spot the differences even better.

0 upvotes
rhlpetrus
By rhlpetrus (6 months ago)

+1

0 upvotes
photofan1986
By photofan1986 (6 months ago)

@rhlpetrus
You know there's a "like" button, right? :D

1 upvote
MarshallG
By MarshallG (6 months ago)

DPReview has more than justified their right to an opinion. They are the gold standard in digital camera reviews, without a doubt. As to your accusation of bias, I believe you'll find that they typically give Nikons higher scores than Canons.

What's most important is that they publish a thorough review that lets you decide for yourself if a camera is right for you. Without a doubt, no camera is perfect nor is one camera best for everyone.

2 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (5 months ago)

Does the word filter here block the word "retard"?

0 upvotes
Alec_c
By Alec_c (6 months ago)

IQ ... Tried it in some less than optimal light conditions ... Images are all but sharp, even perfectly in focus, with the new Sigma 18-35, which is sharp in itself, and this in more than one shot. The sensor technology of Canon, coupled with whatever AA screens they use kills all the fine details. Why then so many Mpix? (I know why! To allow downsizing of picture to get a sharp 10MPix!).
Not that would be able to judge with the all smudged up new set-up of test scene of DP, that is so great to confuse anything but the phone camera users.
Direction Canon has taken with this xxD line, since 50D, and lack of listening to (at least some of) its' consumers is going to support it's constant slide.
OK. Now I have it out of my system :-) Let us see if the great minds of Canon can produce a decent 7D mkII or if I really need to either stay satisfied with my old 40D or move to a different system.

0 upvotes
Alec_c
By Alec_c (6 months ago)

Fanboys gathered to bring flowers to the new Canon muse ... Laughable.
How many of the these ... actually touched, held and shot this camera? I did so.
Dpreview rated ergonomics as excellent. I beg to differ big time: tiny buttons and especially wheels, unusable 4-way selector, cramped body and ultra-cramped hand hold ("sir, you should buy a grip"). The mobile screen is the only good thing to say about the ergonomics. Fit anything but a small and cheap lens and it will fall on it's nose.
One question though, all these people asking for smaller cameras are just pygmies with recently acquired internet connections or terminally weak exemplars of our species? Since when a few ounces of body should sacrifice even a basic thing as holding properly a camera. Unless you buy to keep it on a shelf and show to friends. To a similar comment, a gentleman (of debatable wit) suggested to hold it with the tips of the fingers.

3 upvotes
BeaniePic
By BeaniePic (6 months ago)

I've owned for a month and am in total love with with. There you go... Sold many images from it as well. It's a complete dream of a camera...

2 upvotes
white shadow
By white shadow (6 months ago)

If the Canon 70D body is too small for most hands, then how would you consider those much smaller Micro 4/3 bodies like Lumix G6, GF5 or the even tiny GM1? The ever so popular Oly OMD EM5 is also much smaller.

What do you consider is the optimum size? Perhaps, the Canon 1DX.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 15 minutes after posting
1 upvote
neo_nights
By neo_nights (6 months ago)

While I LOVE DPReview's reviews and do not share the same amount of complaint many people here do, I still fail to understand the Dynamic Range test.

According to your tests, this 70D has more DR than Pentax K5, which, by DxO's ratings, is measured to have 14.1 EV, while the 70D has only 11.6 EV!
Well, if we see more recent reviews here, even m4/3s cameras get higher DR...
(which would be highly unlikely due sensor size difference)

How?

13 upvotes
Jack Hogan
By Jack Hogan (6 months ago)

It's a well known pet peeve that DPReview does not measure the DR of the sensor/camera but that of the 8-bit jpeg file as processed in-camera - which is pretty well arbitrarily controlled by the contrast/brightness curves applied during processing. Unrepresentative you say? N/C.

15 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

> does not measure the DR of the sensor/camera but that of the 8-bit jpeg file

One great reason to skip the Dynamic Range section of these reviews.

8 upvotes
Plastek
By Plastek (6 months ago)

Or anything that "scores" image quality on dPreview.

8 upvotes
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

@ neo..."Well, if we see more recent reviews here, even m4/3s cameras get higher DR...
(which would be highly unlikely due sensor size difference)"".

Right. And you use DxO. DxO.....70D with the larger sensor scores 11,6 eV and E-M1 (smaller sensor) scores 12,7 eV....So there you go...sensor difference size only mean somuch when the difference is not big enough to always make a difference.

1 upvote
neo_nights
By neo_nights (6 months ago)

@Jorginho - You're not wrong in your statement, but then we are comparing a more recent, state-of-art, m4/3 sensor against a 1000 years old APS-C sensor.
Even the 1" RX100 sensor is better than the old APS-C sensor from the Sony A700, for example.

So I should've more specific: given that the sensors are at same age and use (more or less) the same technollogy, the bigger sensor will always have more DR (and less noise).

In this case, it's only natural that the sensors from K5, K5-II/IIs, Nikon D7100 and so, have more DR than the recent Oly cameras.

1 upvote
SylvainBdg
By SylvainBdg (6 months ago)

The canon line up is so boring...I am wondering how can it score so high in IQ...(as far as I know the 70d iq is far behind Nikon D5200, Sony A57 or Pentax K5, Fuji xm1)
Most brands are much more innovative than Canon...

16 upvotes
photofan1986
By photofan1986 (6 months ago)

(nt)

Comment edited 21 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
scrup
By scrup (6 months ago)

All eyes on this camera since nothing else for Amazon to sell over Christmas.

3 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (6 months ago)

Thanks for the technology explained page!
Maybe we can we more of that in reviews, there is so much new stuff out there. Though on sensor PDAF is a bit of old news, and Canon certainly not being the first having it, it surprises me it gets this attention now.
( there was non in the first Nikon 1 as far as I could see)
But besides from that, thanks!

0 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (6 months ago)

I prefer the size to the 7D and like the articulating screen, and according to IR, the shutter lag including AF is nearly 2x faster than the 7D (i.e. it achieves 1D league shutter lag). Big deal is made about liveview AF which will make for great ad hoc follow focus amateur video, but I think the 7.5 fps RAW + improved AF/shutter lag is a big deal too. Finally I have no doubt that even though it may not score much better on DxOMark, its practical shadow lifting capability is much improved due to lack of 7D's obvious vertical banding.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 562
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