Canon 7D Mark II or 90D for Bird Photography

Started 5 months ago | Questions thread
RogerZoul
RogerZoul Senior Member • Posts: 2,757
Re: Canon 7D Mark II or 90D for Bird Photography

BirdFan2000 wrote:

Hello,

I am seeking recommendations on the above camera bodies.

Some background first. I am an amateur photographer seeking to get back into pursuing my hobby. I currently own a 5D Mark II with 24-105 L, the original 100-400 L, a Rebel XSi and a variety of other lenses and camera bodies. I had purchased the equipment back in 2010 when I was actively pursuing this hobby. Then, life events happened and I couldn’t pursue my hobby for several years. In the last few days, I feel inspired again to be outdoors and get back into wildlife photography in general and bird photography specifically. I intend to keep my 24-105 permanently on my 5D II for landscape.

As I reflect on my bird photography experience from several years ago reflection, I feel I missed opportunities because of limited autofocus capabilities of my Rebel. I mostly shoot smaller birds like finches and sparrows. From memory, I find them in a busy background with twigs and leaves with very low or no sunlight. I do not pursue Birds in Flight as much, although I take photos of birds flying from tree to tree.

My needs:

From experience, I have found myself in situations where I wish I had more light or better ISO performance. A superior AutoFocus would be ideal for my needs. Where I live currently is cloudy most days in the winter and I need a camera that works around poor lighting. I feel that I have such a good lens in my 100-400 (original), that I should get a camera that’s able to fully utilize its potential.

I have done my research online and in the DPReview forums. Here’s my assessment:

Benefits of 7D II:

- Demonstrated capability for bird photography.

Concerns with 7D II:

- Doesn’t have WiFi / Bluetooth connectivity (somewhat important to me).

Benefits of 90D:

- 10 fps.

- Has WiFi / Bluetooth connectivity.

- Tilt screen will help with difficult angles.

- For my bird photography needs, would single point AF meet my needs? I read a comment that the performance of 90D exceeds that of 7D II for single point AF.

- Higher megapixel count will allow me to zoom in more (by cropping).

- Better IQ

Concerns with 90D:

- Saw comments that its AF doesn’t perform as well using viewfinder. However, that concern is offset by its good performance using live view. - Dual pixel AF also seems to be a feature that I might make use of.

Between a new 90D or used 7D, what would you recommend for my specific needs?

Thank you in advance.

How do you plan to use LV for bird photography with the 90D?  Tripod? How do you plan to use the flip out screen for birds?  I find it useful for macro (one of my main uses for my 90D) but not so much for birds

The build quality of the 90D falls far short of the 7Dm2.  On mine, the joystick is unreliable and results in my focus point jumping around.  Never had that on any other canon body (70d,80d, 7DM2,6D,5DM4,5DSR, r5) I have owned. I have a buddy with a 90D and he is having all kinds of issues with his, I think his is worse than mine, in fact.

Both 90D and 7DM2 go at 10 fps, but 7DM2 does it better, less noisy and deeper buffer.

7DM2 has DPAF too, but I think the 90D’s version is newer and likely tracks better.  I think it also has advantages for stills, too.

put you are not big into BIF, then the 90D is fine, but if you are, the 7DM2 is better. But for perched birds, the 90D will get the job done.

I would say it would be wise to get the newer 100-400 mk 2 so you can get more focus points with a 1.4x tc III on the 90D.

I like the MPs on the 90D, so I sold one of my 7DM2s and kept the 90D for macro and when I want more reach on my 500 mm f4 + 1.4x tc, when I got my R5.

 RogerZoul's gear list:RogerZoul's gear list
Canon EOS R5 Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM Canon EF 500mm f/4.0L IS II USM Canon EF 400mm F4 DO IS II USM Canon RF 24-105mm F4L IS USM +32 more
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