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Raw and Raw Conversion

Supplied software

The EOS 7D is provided with the 'Canon EOS Solutions Disk v21.0' which includes:

  • Canon ZoomBrowser EX 6.4 - Easy to use image browsing and organization with a unique interface. Includes rudimentary image editing, printing and e-mail. This latest version of the software also provides some very basic video editing. - Windows only.
      
  • Canon EOS Utility 2.7 - Automatic or Manual transfer of images via WIA, also allows for the adjustment of camera settings and remote 'tethered' shooting. *  
     
  • Canon PhotoStitch 3.1 - Panorama stitching utility.
     
  • Canon Digital Photo Professional 3.7 - Advanced image workflow and editing, specialized in RAW conversion with a range of adjustment and output options. *
     
  • Picture Style Editor 1.6 - Create custom Picture Styles. *

* Universal Binaries (Intel / PowerPC) for Mac OS X.

Digital Photo Professional is an image workflow and RAW conversion application that provides for the browsing and management of images in a folder structure as well as tagging, rotation etc. In addition it also provides an extensive range of RAW conversion features which include digital exposure compensation, white balance, tone curve, color, picture style, sharpness and lens correction parameters.

A number of different tools can be accessed from the tools menu. The Quick Check tool allows you to browse through a selection of images and assign check marks to them. The Trimming tool can be used to apply a crop to an image (the image itself is not modified, this is simply saved in the recipe).

The Stamp tool works in a similar way to the clone stamp or healing brush in Photoshop (although it is primary designed for the removal of light or dark blotches).The Rename tool can be used to change the filename of a selection of images based on a rule set. Finally you can convert multiple RAW files at a time using the batch conversion tool.

Digital Photo Professional has a comprehensive feature set. RAW conversion (in this image you can see the Edit window) certainly offers enough to satisfy even the most advanced user. In fact you can easily end up spending way too long trying the different sliders.... One of the main advantages of working with RAW files: DPP offers much more control over noise-reduction than the in-camera settings.
Tone curves can be adjusted for each color channel separately. The lens aberration window offers correction of light fall-off, chromatic aberration, distortion and color blur.

RAW conversion

As is normal in our digital SLR reviews we like to compare the supplied RAW conversion software, any optional manufacturer RAW conversion software and some third party RAW converter. In the case of the EOS 7D we used the supplied Digital Photo Professional, Adobe Camera RAW 5.6 Beta and a Release Candidate 2 version of the new Capture One Pro 5.0.

  • JPEG - Large/Fine, Default settings
  • DPP - Digital Photo Professional 3.7
  • Cap One - Capture One Pro 5.0 RC2
  • ACR - Adobe Camera RAW 5.6 beta

Please note that our version of Adobe ACR (5.6 Beta) had according to Adobe not been fully optimized for the EOS 7D yet. Once a full version becomes available we will reprocess these samples and replace them where necessary. Thanks to Eric at Adobe for making this 'pre-beta' version of ACR available in time for this review.

Color reproduction

Place your mouse over the label below the image to see the color from a GretagMacbeth ColorChecker chart produced using each RAW converter. As we would expect there is hardly any difference between JPEG from the camera and Digital Photo Professional. Adobe Camera RAW and Capture One's default settings take slightly different approaches to color response and tone curve.

Canon EOS 7D Compare to:  
      
      
      
      
StandardPortraitLandscapeNeutral
FaithfulMonoAdobe RGB

Sharpness and Detail

The sharpest image was produced by Capture One although the end result looks almost slightly over processed. DPP and Adobe ACR deliver a better balance between image detail and sharpening. All RAW samples show a tad more detail in the feathers than the out-of-camera JPEG.

Digital Photo Professional -> TIFF (Default settings, manual WB)
ISO 100 studio scene 100% crops
Capture One Pro ->JPEG (Default settings, manual WB)
ISO 100 studio scene 100% crops
Adobe ACR 5.6 (Beta) RAW ->JPEG (Default settings, manual WB)
ISO 100 studio scene 100% crops
JPEG out of camera, High quality setting (all settings default)
ISO 100 studio scene 100% crop

Resolution

These crops demonstrate that more detail is available from the RAW converters than can be obtained from JPEG. That said, a lot of this detail could be described as 'false' (produced beyond Nyquist), although frankly the majority of the time this is useful as it improves the appearance of 'texture'. The ACR output looks a little softer than DPP. Again, Capture One is close to being over sharpened.

JPEG from camera Digital Photo Professional (RAW)
Adobe Camera RAW 5.6 Beta (RAW) Capture One Pro 5.0 RC2 (RAW)

Real word advantages

What we've seen above on the test charts of course also works on real life shots. Some careful sharpening in the RAW conversion will generate visibly more detail than can be seen in the JPG image. The difference is not enormous though and you'll have to zoom in quite a bit in order to spot it.

JPEG from Camera
(default sharpening)
ACR conversion
(Sharpening 40, radius 0.5, detail 60)

RAW files for download

Here we provide RAW files, both from the review and the sample shots we take, to allow you to apply your own workflow techniques and see whether your experiences match ours.

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Comments

Total comments: 11
Phil Hol
By Phil Hol (1 month ago)

If you have a filter fitted to protect the lens try shooting without. After buying my 100-400 lens I returned to the shop after finding my images soft using a 7D. They tested my lens with a second one they had in the shop and agreed the first lens was faulty. When I got the second lens home I found it as poor as the first until I realized the second lens tested had not had a filter fitted when tested in the shop and I had transfered my filter to the second lens when I got home.
Conclusion: I only use filters for effects and I have remove all my "protective filters" from my L lenses. Why spend hundreds of pounds on lenses just to add a piece of cheap glass on the front.

0 upvotes
Girish Madpuwar
By Girish Madpuwar (2 months ago)

I am 7D user and have noticed that my images are considerably soft. I mostly use canon 100-400L lens. Initially I thought that its problem with the way I use camera. I tried all possible things. Searched lot and found many discussion about AF problem with 7D. Can someone share their experience?
It seems 7D AF is not consistent although manual focus gives considerably crisp and sharp image.

Comment edited 45 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Patcheye
By Patcheye (4 months ago)

I'm a wheelchair user and have gone for the 7D because of the increase in range when using a shorter lens over full frame which means though I often cannot get close I often achieve a useable image.

Live on the coast so to avoid problems re dust on the sensor from the beach I purchased a second one a few months back which says, I think, just how pleased I am with the product. Re low iso and noise, possibly because of high light levels from sea reflection and living in a flat open area I personally find no problems but using 2.8 lenses helps. Not professional but have had people use my stuff on their websites - so for my needs the 7D works well - Oh, and if like me you have poor dexterity you'll find the raised buttons really helpful even when wearing gloves.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Ajaykdelhi
By Ajaykdelhi (4 months ago)

I have a 70D, am getting a used 7D at $ 800 next week, will provide a comprehensive review after that

0 upvotes
TahoeJohn
By TahoeJohn (4 months ago)

My Review of the Canon 7d as the owner of one for 1yr is this.I shoot Professionally and have used the 7d for just about 1yr.It is a bit bigger,heavier than my other EOS Canon's.Picture quality is top of the line.Video quality is top of the line.The Grain Factor when using the ISO at a higher number is compensated by a setting in the Menu so no problem.At 8fps continuous it stands above the others.Weather proof as well (Body only).Recently my Canon 7d was knocked over while mounted atop a 6ft tripod landing on solid asphalt.A little scratch on the body was all the damage it received.Though bigger and heavier the construction,function,image quality of this Camera is incredible.I shoot Landscape,Portrait,sports(MMA Fights) and everything in between.Canon went above and beyond with this model.A+ is the grade I give for this one.

0 upvotes
Shashank90
By Shashank90 (5 months ago)

Which one is a better model 70d or 7d , I have read numerous reviews and seen plenty of videos, even though 70d is a much newer version I would like to know from some one who has used them side by side.

0 upvotes
Jostian
By Jostian (4 months ago)

I think both are great, depends on your needs, the 7D is like a tank, the build quality is incredible, its AF is phenomenal (a cut above the 70D in terms of customization options), the 70D has slight advantage 2/3 of a stop at higher iso's, has wifi and touchscreen, the 7D has bigger and better OVF, and the 70D have awesome video capabilities. I played with both and went for the 7D (easy choice), the 70D felt like a toy and I didnt like the plasticky feel (compared to the 7D). Bit both are great, you'll enjoy either depending on your needs.

0 upvotes
EhXsan
By EhXsan (6 months ago)

what is max usable ISO on canon 7d?

1 upvote
PhotobyCarlos
By PhotobyCarlos (9 months ago)

www.photobycarlos.com all my pictures with 7d

2 upvotes
DreamRunnerPhotography
By DreamRunnerPhotography (5 months ago)

Checked your photos at photobycarlos.com. Really it was awesome :) Finally I decided to go for 7D after saw your website. Tnx !!!
please suggest me some good lenses which are more better for portrait & landscape shooting

0 upvotes
gjpuk
By gjpuk (3 months ago)

For potraits i use 5omm prime canon 1.8mm
for landscapes a sigma 10-20mm

0 upvotes
Total comments: 11