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Canon 70D vs Canon 7D Mark II


In this article, I will make an overview of the most widely known DSLR cameras on the market, the Canon EOS 70D and the Canon EOS 7D Mark II that were introduced in September 2013, and September 2014, respectively. The difference isn’t huge between them, no matter if you view from the perspective of the launch date, the internal components, and the overall capabilities, in fact, both cameras employ an APS-C sensor.

At a glance, I would be unable to declare the official winner with a few sentences, that’s why, I’d suggest getting into business right away and reveal them completely, and describe how would they improve your user and shooting experience!

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Head To Head Comparison

Canon 70D

The Canon EOS 70D sports a stylish, matte-black colored body that feels very solid and smooth in your hands, the reason behind this is that Canon has used aluminum and polycarbonate resin as well as a glass and conductive fiber throughout the crafting process which makes this camera strong enough to survive years of use without any problems! But, Canon didn’t stop here! They’ve even added a weather-sealing that drastically enhances the camera’s ability to withstand moisture and dust, hence, it allows you to shoot in a different environment easily and effectively!

Moreover, the EOS 70D employs a plethora of controls, which is nothing to be surprised of since I’m talking about a DSLR camera. Even though when you heard the word ” too many ” may sound a bit harsh, you shouldn’t worry at all. The control layout is wonderfully organized!

On the top-left, there’s a single Mode dial with an On/Off switch, an Information LCD screen located on the right, which is surrounded by 5 dedicated buttons meant for adjusting the Drive mode, ISO, Autofocus mode, Metering and the last is for activating the backlight of the Information LCD screen. On the grip, there’s a usual shutter release button, while above it, you can find a small button of which you can take advantage and adjust the active focus points and the shutter.

If you flip the camera over, the rear part houses two, dedicated Menu and Info buttons that sit to the left of the viewfinder, while on the right, from the top and all the way down, there are multiple controls with a directional pad that has a SET label positioned nearly to the bottom.

I’d also like to mention that the 70D’s viewfinder has a glass pentaprism design that covers up to 98% of the field, has a 0.95x magnification, it is bright enough to let you shoot conveniently through it and covers enough area so that you may never miss what you’d opt to capture!

In the middle, there’s a fully-articulated, 3″ touchscreen that has a resolution of 1,040k-dots, which is pretty good since you will not only enjoy the produced visuals, but you will also have an option to adjust the screen depending on your preferences, whether you want it to be set upwards, downwards or use it to shoot self-portraits! What’s also interesting that you can fold up the screen to face inwards if you don’t want to use it, hence, this comes as an added protection.

Furthermore, the connection options included in this camera are USB port, an HDMI port, built-in stereo mic, hot shoe, single memory card slot that supports SD/SDHC/SDXC cards, and an integrated Wi-Fi, which has its own pros and cons. To be more precise, you can share your content to compatible devices, however, you won’t be able to record videos if you have the Wi-Fi enabled. Yes, it is a bit awkward.

When it comes to the performance, the EOS 70D combines a 20.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor, runs on a DIGIC 5+ image processor, has a 19-point cross-type AF system, burst shooting speed of 7 fps, and an ISO range of 100-12,800 which is expandable up to 25,600!

The biggest highlight regarding this camera is its ability to output strong visuals that have plenty of details!

To simplify this even more, the EOS 70D captures JPG and RAW format imagery, and if you opt to shoot JPGs keep in mind that the best results can be achieved if you shoot below ISO 6400, because by doing that, you will be more than satisfied to see the end results. Images look sharp, the color accuracy is excellent and the details are unbelievably defined.

Once you push higher, the in-camera noise reduction starts to work more and it decreases the quality of the details, and the noise becomes more pronounced. That’s why, I’d suggest you avoid the upper ISO sensitivity border, whenever possible.

Opposed to JPGs, RAW images taken at the highest ISO levels look better than the JPGs even though the noise is present, because details are preserved pretty well, hence, this makes the images be usable.

Last but not least, the EOS 70D records 1080p videos at 30/24 fps, 720p videos at 60fps in QuickTime format, and to be honest, although I like the footage, I really think that Canon should have allow you to record at 60fps. However, if you’re not really a fan of video recording and prefer to capture photos most of the time, you will unlikely be disappointed by the lack of recording 1080p videos at 60fps.

Canon 70D Sample Images:

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Canon 7D Mark II

The Canon EOS 7D Mark II features an attractive, black-colored body that is durable and lightweight at the same time, because it is made of a rigid magnesium on one side, while on the other, it is protected by a weather-sealing which makes the camera strong enough to resist water and dust. If I make a quick comparison regarding the bodies by both cameras, I have to admit that Canon did an excellent job here, and both cameras receive points from me, so the result, for now, is a tie!

Aside from being a good-looking and durable camera, the EOS 7D Mark II is very similar to the EOS 70D in terms of its grip, because it is covered in a textured pattern which allows the photographer to have a steady and convenient hold which will definitely play a huge role during your photo sessions.

In terms of the controls, this particular model holds a standard mode that sits to the left of the viewfinder which is located on the top plate, a hot shoe sits on the middle, while on the right, there’s an Information LCD screen with 4 dedicated buttons labeled as WB,Drive*AF, ISO, and a lightbulb that activates the backlight of the LCD screen, while above, you can also notice an M-Fn button and a shutter release button that sits on the top. Once again, the top part of both cameras is nearly identical, hence, both of them lets you have a quick access in order to adjust the picture according to your preferences!

On the rear, there is an array of buttons sitting on the left side and all of them stretch from the top to the bottom, on the top-center there’s a viewfinder, an LCD screen that sits slightly below, whereas, on the right, there are a couple of buttons of which the most notable is the sprung selection lever that sits around the dedicated mini-joystick control.

For your information, the viewfinder is very bright, big and covers up to 100% of the frame which is something that I absolutely favor, because in comparison to the EOS 70D, the viewfinder of this camera will offer you an even better shooting experience. However, the EOS 7D Mark II falls with its 3″ 1,040k-dot LCD display which is fixed, unfortunately, and although the produced visuals are strong, you will be restricted to shoot from different angles.

Moving on, the physical connections ports which are offered by this camera include a USB 3.0 port, an HDMI port, stereo mic socket, PC studio flash, N3-type remote control port, dual memory card slot that support SD/SDHC/SDXC and CF cards. In comparison to the EOS 70D, this camera lacks built-in Wi-Fi, although Canon sells an optional Wi-Fi adapter ( W-E1) which will let you transfer your photos and videos via Wi-Fi. Clearly, I consider this as a remark because Canon could have implemented a built-in Wi-Fi if we take into consideration the price tag of this camera.

Performance-wise, the EOS 7D Mark II incorporates a 20.2MP sensor, has a burst shooting speed of 10 fps, 65-point all cross-type AF system, native ISO range of 100-16,000 which can be expanded up to 51,200, and it is powered by Dual Digic 6 image processors which ensure fast processing speeds and a great control over the noise as you’re shooting throughout the ISO range.

As was the case with the previous camera, this one does also capture JPG and RAW format imagery, so let’s find out how it feels to shoot with this camera.

JPGs look delightful and relatively noise-free up to the ISO 6400, hence, as you’re pushing higher the stronger the noise is going to be, and to be honest, you don’t really want to deal with that. Once you reach ISO 12,800 noise becomes more prominent, but what’s interesting that at ISO 16,000 images are still usable for Web purposes. If you push more and start shooting through ISO 25,600-51,200, images become blurry and the details are kind of lost, therefore, avoid these levels as much as possible.

On the contrary, RAW format images look superb up to ISO 25,600, although the noise is there and you can recognize it, but it is a way better compared to the results of JPGs, and once you reach the top setting, details appear in a rough fashion but even then, they look better than JPGs.

Finally, in comparison to the EOS 70D, the EOS 7D Mark II records 1080p videos at 24/30/60 fps, and 720p videos at 60 fps, hence, without a doubt I can say that this camera simply outperforms the EOS 70D at this point, because the produced footage is breath-taking indeed!

Canon 7D Mark II Sample Images:

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Canon 70D vs Canon 7D Mark II Feature Comparison

  Canon 70D Canon 7D Mark II
Camera Type DSLR DSLR
Megapixels 20.2 20.2
ISO Range 100-12,800;25,600 100-16,000;51,200
Flip-Out Screen Yes No
AF Points 19 AF Points 65 AF Points
Viewfinder Yes Yes
Touchscreen Yes No
Video Recording Yes Yes
Sensor Size APS-C APS-C

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In the end, I hope that you’ve found this article enjoyable and that you’ve found out more regarding both cameras, so, now is the time where we have to bring the final head to head comparison so that you can decide which one deserves to become your next shooting gear.

If you wish to shoot Portrait photography, I’d like you to know that both cameras output an average performance and nearly identical results, whereas for Street photography, the 70D is better and more convenient to shoot with thanks to its fully-articulated LCD screen.

The result of Sports photography are in favor of the EOS 7D Mark II who packs a greater continuous shooting speed and more cross-type points ( 65 vs 19), while for Daily and Landscape photography, the result is yet again similar, but the 70D is a bit more convenient to shoot with because it weighs less.

Overall, the EOS 70D proves itself as better by having a built-in Wi-Fi support, an articulating touchscreen, and a stronger battery life ( ~920 vs ~678 shots), whereas, the EOS 7D Mark II is GPS-enabled, has a 25% higher Max iso ( 16,000 vs 12,800), 45 more focus/cross-type points, more accurate viewfinder, records 1080p videos at 60 fps, and it has a faster continuous speed ( 10 vs 7 fps).

Overall, I’d go for the EOS 7D Mark II if you prefer shooting fast-moving objects or record videos at 60fps, but if you don’t want to spend much money but would like to have a strong camera, the more cost-effective option would be the EOS 70D.

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