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Author Topic: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?  (Read 16128 times)

Zv

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #30 on: April 13, 2013, 12:49:44 PM »
The 7D is a great all round camera. I love using it, it just feels nice and begs to be used with a nice lens on the end. I like to use it for walk around or candids as the AF is quick, reliable and accurate enough to capture what I see (and if I miss theres always 8fps to help me out!). Some say it's not good at high ISO levels but I reckon up to 3200 is OK. I haven't tried it with my 135L yet but I reckon that will be a dynamite combo for indoor sports.

Although we might see a 7D2 sometime in the future, there is no certainty it will be what you are looking for. The 7D is more than capable. Pick one up used and start shootin. After you use it the 500D will seem like a toy!

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #30 on: April 13, 2013, 12:49:44 PM »

jrista

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #31 on: April 13, 2013, 10:30:57 PM »
To the OP: The only thing I recommend, if you plan thing a 7D might fit your needs, is to rent one and try it out in lower light situations. The 7D is one of those cameras you either love or you hate. I recommended it, like everyone else here, to someone about a year ago, and they absolutely hated it. I think their hate was unwarranted, and their complaints rather exaggerated the facts, but still...its a love or hate camera.

The problem is, while it was an EXCELLENT camera for it's time, it did not utilize a process shrink to the new 180nm process that more advanced sensor designs were starting to use at the time. Its 18mp sensor, the ubiquitous Canon 18mp sensor, is still manufactured on the decade-old 500nm process. As such, it lacks the photodiode area to support a decent FWC (it's only 20k e-), which limits the maximum potential SNR, which has a direct impact on noise. Even at ISO 100, the noise performance at 100% crop (or in other words, assuming you intend to utilize all of the pixels the 7D has to offer), is marginally better than the 5D III at ISO 400. ISO performance above 1600 is fairly poor as well as an additional amplifier is used for 3200 and 6400, and while with work you can get some usable shots at ISO 3200, images can still be quite noisy at that level.

If you are the type of person who cares very much about noise performance, then I really do highly recommend you rent the 7D first and try it out in the most demanding situations you think you'll use it in. Anyone who has used the 5D II in the past, or other FF cameras with their nice, big pixels and gargantuan full well capacities, will probably have issues with the noise of a 7D. Additionally, the 7D was the first generation of products to use the Canon 18mp APS-C sensor, and is also the only product to use dual DIGIC chips to process the images (which can cause quite intrusive vertical banding right into the mid-tones if you fail to maximize SNR with ETTR.) Canon's handling of that sensor improved with later generation Rebel products, and I've read, heard, and chatted about too many cases where people have found the 550D and 650D produced slightly better IQ than the 7D.

The AF system and frame rate are the real selling points of the 7D. If you need them and can't afford a 1D body, then there really isn't any other camera that fills the role the 7D does. If you can live with the noise, don't need ISO's above 1600 very often, and care more about locking focus, tracking your subjects, and getting the shot with lenses that cost less than $5000...then it is the camera for you. Just make sure you can live with the noise! :P
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el bouv

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #32 on: April 14, 2013, 01:33:21 AM »
+ 1 jrista

Very balanced opinion.

mdmphoto

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #33 on: April 14, 2013, 04:01:51 AM »
I just  bought a 6D after seeing the increased dynamic range and iso capabilities it offers over my 7D. Having said that I must say also that I love my 7D.  I've owned the original Rebel, xTi, 40-, and 50D bodies, and the 7D is a radical upgrade to the best of those bodies on their best days doing whatever shooting they did best.   I've owned this camera for some 3 years and it has been a fabulous tool for capturing the images I wanted, within its own limitation, which is its high-iso noise handling - for me, anything over 1600.  I generally expect to get good shots to that point.  I shot a Bulls game with a 70-200 f/2,8L IS at 2000 and the majority of the shots were very usable.  Up to 2500 is usually usable for me after some software tinkering. I haven't felt comfortable beyond that, though I have even seen other shooters get great results at higher iso settings.
Anyway.
The af is spot on and fast - and the 19 selectable af points  are something I miss on the 6D. I have rarely missed a shot using af.  Until last week my kit consisted of a 50- and 7D bodies, but I will now sell the 50D, grip and all, and work with the 7- and 6D bodies.  I am still hoping for enough improvement in the 7D II to warrant purchasing it, but I am very happy with my current combination. The 6D will be my portrait, landscape and low-light tool, but the 7D out-runs it for sports and nature (wild animals), the frame rate and crop fov lends itself to that type of shooting.
As for what to do, that is not so easy to answer.  If you decide to buy the current 7D, I would buy it new. The price continues to stagger downward, and it will have a longer useful life if bought new. On the other hand, the 7D II is expected by the end of the year and should be as spectacular as the original when it was introduced.  I would guess that gps and wifi will be built-in like in the 6D - by the way, those two features are fabulous, even though they do eat battery power.  I would hope that the iso noise would be greatly improved with the new (?) sensor and mfg process.  These things layered on top of the current specs would make the II very compelling for me next Spring. If you expect to need the frame rate and fov, along with the superior af system the 7D stands out, and most likely the 7D II even moreso.  On the other hand, the 6D offers clear iq superiority, and its ff sensor will probably beat out the 7D II if it continues as a 1.6 crop. The much-maligned af in  the 6D requires a little more deliberation, but definitely produces; although tracking fast-moving targets may not be all that easy.  The thing is, if you decide to go crop, it probably makes more sense to wait for the new technology of the 7D II.
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Zv

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #34 on: April 14, 2013, 04:54:44 AM »
To the OP: The only thing I recommend, if you plan thing a 7D might fit your needs, is to rent one and try it out in lower light situations. The 7D is one of those cameras you either love or you hate. I recommended it, like everyone else here, to someone about a year ago, and they absolutely hated it. I think their hate was unwarranted, and their complaints rather exaggerated the facts, but still...its a love or hate camera.

The problem is, while it was an EXCELLENT camera for it's time, it did not utilize a process shrink to the new 180nm process that more advanced sensor designs were starting to use at the time. Its 18mp sensor, the ubiquitous Canon 18mp sensor, is still manufactured on the decade-old 500nm process. As such, it lacks the photodiode area to support a decent FWC (it's only 20k e-), which limits the maximum potential SNR, which has a direct impact on noise. Even at ISO 100, the noise performance at 100% crop (or in other words, assuming you intend to utilize all of the pixels the 7D has to offer), is marginally better than the 5D III at ISO 400. ISO performance above 1600 is fairly poor as well as an additional amplifier is used for 3200 and 6400, and while with work you can get some usable shots at ISO 3200, images can still be quite noisy at that level.

If you are the type of person who cares very much about noise performance, then I really do highly recommend you rent the 7D first and try it out in the most demanding situations you think you'll use it in. Anyone who has used the 5D II in the past, or other FF cameras with their nice, big pixels and gargantuan full well capacities, will probably have issues with the noise of a 7D. Additionally, the 7D was the first generation of products to use the Canon 18mp APS-C sensor, and is also the only product to use dual DIGIC chips to process the images (which can cause quite intrusive vertical banding right into the mid-tones if you fail to maximize SNR with ETTR.) Canon's handling of that sensor improved with later generation Rebel products, and I've read, heard, and chatted about too many cases where people have found the 550D and 650D produced slightly better IQ than the 7D.

The AF system and frame rate are the real selling points of the 7D. If you need them and can't afford a 1D body, then there really isn't any other camera that fills the role the 7D does. If you can live with the noise, don't need ISO's above 1600 very often, and care more about locking focus, tracking your subjects, and getting the shot with lenses that cost less than $5000...then it is the camera for you. Just make sure you can live with the noise! :P

Yeah I do get annoyed when I see some (not much) noise at ISO 100 but then again that is when viewed at 100%. For web use it's not noticeable. I guess if you were to print the image large you might notice. Most regular people don't even know what noise is. Never once has anyone commented on my images regarding noise. I reckon we photographers are just overly critical of our own images.

I'll do an experiment where I will shoot one image at high ISO and leave the noise as is and then another side by side with NR. See if anyone on my facebook can spot which is which.
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mdmphoto

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #35 on: April 14, 2013, 05:36:15 AM »
7D night shot @ iso 400 ( I think...) and a lit:tle work
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Krob78

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2013, 10:52:55 AM »
We've seen 7D bodies as low as $999 NEW in recent times.  Its not hard to find one for not much more than that right now.

Fantastic deal in a camera for that sort of price.

Yes, a little noisy at higher ISOs.   But, on the other hand... its a bit of a sports car in its focusing and frame rate.  You have to be the judge.  Right now, for the money, nothing Canon has can touch it for wildlife or sports.

For real world prints, or realistic screen/eframe display, the noise limitations are really not too limiting.  For pixel peeping... thats another story.
Nothing other can touch it that is, unless you go to the 1DIV, 1Dx...

You forgot the qualifier "for the money". The 1DIV and 1D X are thousands of dollars, the 7D can be had for less than a thousand. For the money, nothing from any manufacturer can currently touch what the 7D can do for nine hundred bucks! :)
Agreed J, I didn't really forget that, I purposely didn't mention it though, yet I should have.  I whole heartedly agree, for the money, it's a "best buy" for wildlife and sports, I absolutely love mine and can't seem to part with it, despite owning the 5d Mk III.  I really love it and look forward to seeing what the 7D Mk II will offer if it becomes reality at some point this year... ;)
Ken

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2013, 10:52:55 AM »

gshocked

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #37 on: April 21, 2013, 10:05:20 AM »
Hi all,

Thanks to all that have replied. It's great to see that there are other people in my situation.
I've been shooting for a while now and it really was time for a new body. After using both the 7D and 6D, there were definitely feature on both cameras that were must haves. So I've decided to bite the bullet and get a 5D mk III.
I wanted the speed of a 7D But have the low light capability of a 6D. It's a little more than what I initially wanted but I didn't want to make a compromise when getting a new camera body.

Krob78

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #38 on: April 21, 2013, 11:13:03 AM »
Hi all,

Thanks to all that have replied. It's great to see that there are other people in my situation.
I've been shooting for a while now and it really was time for a new body. After using both the 7D and 6D, there were definitely feature on both cameras that were must haves. So I've decided to bite the bullet and get a 5D mk III.
I wanted the speed of a 7D But have the low light capability of a 6D. It's a little more than what I initially wanted but I didn't want to make a compromise when getting a new camera body.
Great choice G!  I have the 5D Mk III also with my 7D.  It's a fantastic choice.  The AF system is far superior to the 6d and markedly superior to the 7D, which has better AF than the 6D imho. 

I've found myself over the last few months using my 7D less and less.  I love so much about the 7D but the image quality coming out of the 5D3 is so different and I capture a lot more shots with the  AF than I did with the formidable 7D. 

I think the 7D is a relevant camera to this day, the 5d3 although not a fair comparison being FF is certainly superior if one has the resources to make that purchase.  You're going to love it!

Congatulations! :D
Ken

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jrista

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #39 on: April 21, 2013, 12:21:10 PM »
Hi all,

Thanks to all that have replied. It's great to see that there are other people in my situation.
I've been shooting for a while now and it really was time for a new body. After using both the 7D and 6D, there were definitely feature on both cameras that were must haves. So I've decided to bite the bullet and get a 5D mk III.
I wanted the speed of a 7D But have the low light capability of a 6D. It's a little more than what I initially wanted but I didn't want to make a compromise when getting a new camera body.

Congrats on getting the 5D III! When you need the best of both worlds, performance and low light capability, you gotta get the tool designed for that job. Aside from the 1D X, I don't think there is any better tool that covers the bases so well!
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Krob78

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #40 on: April 21, 2013, 01:14:56 PM »
Hi all,

Thanks to all that have replied. It's great to see that there are other people in my situation.
I've been shooting for a while now and it really was time for a new body. After using both the 7D and 6D, there were definitely feature on both cameras that were must haves. So I've decided to bite the bullet and get a 5D mk III.
I wanted the speed of a 7D But have the low light capability of a 6D. It's a little more than what I initially wanted but I didn't want to make a compromise when getting a new camera body.

Congrats on getting the 5D III! When you need the best of both worlds, performance and low light capability, you gotta get the tool designed for that job. Aside from the 1D X, I don't think there is any better tool that covers the bases so well!
++1
Ken

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gshocked

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #41 on: April 21, 2013, 10:43:59 PM »
Thanks Krob78 and jrista!

northbyten

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #42 on: April 27, 2013, 04:21:34 PM »
better off getting better glass :)

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Re: Is it too late to buy a Canon 7D?
« Reply #42 on: April 27, 2013, 04:21:34 PM »