Finally ready to upgrade from a 7D...Suggestions?

Apr 12, 2019
1
0
After making my first big camera purchase many years ago, I have decided I am well overdue to upgrade from my trusty Canon 7D. Since getting the 7D, I have invested in some glass (Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 and Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 G2), the second of which I bought a few months ago and love. Got me to thinking that I should probably see what's out there from a body standpoint too.

Seems like some things have changed but that Canon has maybe fallen behind a little of the competition. That said, I am not looking to switch. Plus a lot of these features where they may have fallen behind will be new to me. I think I could talk myself into getting an 80D, 7D Mk II, or 5D Mk IV and feel good about my purchase (I've tried very hard to try and talk myself into a 1D-x but just can't do it for that kind of cash). So my question to the group is, what should I upgrade my 7D to?

Short story:
I primarily like shooting sports/action/candid and am also looking for something that will be a step-up in low light performance. I'd love to get into doing more video so better on that front would be nice to have, but not need to have. The whole "zapping the photos from your camera to your phone via wifi" sounds real cool. Shooting looking mainly at the touchscreen sounds interesting, is it significantly better than going "old school"? All that said, my primary interest is image quality and trying to get as many good, in-focus shots as possible.

Long story:
I run a small website business and in some of my offerings I include photography. I'm not the best when it comes to portrait shots (you'll never see me taking photos for the high school yearbook and battling Olan Mills), but good enough to get the job done. I find much more fulfillment in candid shots.

But my true passion in photography is sports, and over the past couple of years, my daughter's competitive gymnastics events. It is fun to be able to capture the action mid-air with my 7D, but often a challenge in small gyms with not so great lighting. My youngest daughter started dance this year and I am excited to shoot her recitals and get some good shots of her like I do for big sis.

It looks like the 7D Mk II can give me pretty much a better version of what I have at a good value. What am I missing by not having a full frame? Looks like the 5D Mk4 has lower fps, but does it make up for it in image quality? Is the video that much better? If I want to branch out more into photography and be more aggressive in offering that service to businesses, does it make more sense to go for the 5D Mk4? Am I better off just grabbing an 80D for now and waiting a year or two to see what Cannon will have as far as mid-higher tier DSLR offerings? Looks like a 7D Mk III is not in the cards this year

When I got my first Canon Rebel a decade ago, I dove into learning about photography. I then bought the 7D and continued my learning to make the most of my purchase. I would say I kinda "slumped" there for 2 or 3 years, but re-kindled things a year or so ago and the most recent Tamron lens I bought definitely stoked the fire. That purchase was made with one of my new clients in mind, and my current desire to upgrade the 7D is definitely based at least in part on business possibilities. But my kids are only young once, and I want to capture as many beautiful moments as I can.

If you've read this far, I really appreciate you doing so and would love to hear your thoughts on my situation. Thanks!
 

Don Haines

Beware of cats with laser eyes!
Jun 4, 2012
7,859
1,180
Canada
After making my first big camera purchase many years ago, I have decided I am well overdue to upgrade from my trusty Canon 7D. Since getting the 7D, I have invested in some glass (Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 and Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 G2), the second of which I bought a few months ago and love. Got me to thinking that I should probably see what's out there from a body standpoint too.

Seems like some things have changed but that Canon has maybe fallen behind a little of the competition. That said, I am not looking to switch. Plus a lot of these features where they may have fallen behind will be new to me. I think I could talk myself into getting an 80D, 7D Mk II, or 5D Mk IV and feel good about my purchase (I've tried very hard to try and talk myself into a 1D-x but just can't do it for that kind of cash). So my question to the group is, what should I upgrade my 7D to?

Short story:
I primarily like shooting sports/action/candid and am also looking for something that will be a step-up in low light performance. I'd love to get into doing more video so better on that front would be nice to have, but not need to have. The whole "zapping the photos from your camera to your phone via wifi" sounds real cool. Shooting looking mainly at the touchscreen sounds interesting, is it significantly better than going "old school"? All that said, my primary interest is image quality and trying to get as many good, in-focus shots as possible.

Long story:
I run a small website business and in some of my offerings I include photography. I'm not the best when it comes to portrait shots (you'll never see me taking photos for the high school yearbook and battling Olan Mills), but good enough to get the job done. I find much more fulfillment in candid shots.

But my true passion in photography is sports, and over the past couple of years, my daughter's competitive gymnastics events. It is fun to be able to capture the action mid-air with my 7D, but often a challenge in small gyms with not so great lighting. My youngest daughter started dance this year and I am excited to shoot her recitals and get some good shots of her like I do for big sis.

It looks like the 7D Mk II can give me pretty much a better version of what I have at a good value. What am I missing by not having a full frame? Looks like the 5D Mk4 has lower fps, but does it make up for it in image quality? Is the video that much better? If I want to branch out more into photography and be more aggressive in offering that service to businesses, does it make more sense to go for the 5D Mk4? Am I better off just grabbing an 80D for now and waiting a year or two to see what Cannon will have as far as mid-higher tier DSLR offerings? Looks like a 7D Mk III is not in the cards this year

When I got my first Canon Rebel a decade ago, I dove into learning about photography. I then bought the 7D and continued my learning to make the most of my purchase. I would say I kinda "slumped" there for 2 or 3 years, but re-kindled things a year or so ago and the most recent Tamron lens I bought definitely stoked the fire. That purchase was made with one of my new clients in mind, and my current desire to upgrade the 7D is definitely based at least in part on business possibilities. But my kids are only young once, and I want to capture as many beautiful moments as I can.

If you've read this far, I really appreciate you doing so and would love to hear your thoughts on my situation. Thanks!
For medium cost:

The 7D2 is a great camera with an AF system that is hard to beat, but not the best image quality in poor light. The frame rate is top notch! It is a crop 1DX2
The 80D is also great, but not as good for the AF system, but to be fair, you have to really be pushing things to notice the difference. If you are focal length limited the 7D2 and 80D give you more pixels on target, slightly more with the 80D

The 6D2 is significantly better in low light, but worse for AF system and frame rate. It shoots great video and the articulated touchscreen interface is top notch!

the R and the RP are both close to the 6D2, except Mirrorless. One a bit better, one a bit worse. Both should be great in low light (I have not used either) but for sports the burst rate is too slow. Also( and I repeat that I have not used one personally) I am told that the AF system is not as good.

A bit higher cost:
The 5D4 is hard to beat, it does everything better than the 7D2 except frame rate and pixel density. The AF point spread is better on the 7D2, but realistically, if you are good at tracking the action it does not matter. Of course, in low light, FF beats crop every time.



To me, the big factor is the lighting where you are shooting. If it is poor, you really want FF. If it is good, either is good.

If you are shooting fast moving sports and/or trying to get that perfect instant in time, frame rate is very important. I know the math does not work, but 10fps seems to be about five times better than 6fps.....

The conventional wisdom is that if you are focal length limited, go crop. However, with your F2.8 lenses, go try out a FFcamera with a teleconverter. This could give you the best of both worlds. You could also look at the Tamron 150-600G2, it is very hard to beat for the price.

A 5D3 is also an option, as is a used 7D2.

Good luck making a choice and I hope I helped.
 
Last edited:

Del Paso

M3 Singlestroke
Aug 9, 2018
314
266
For medium cost:

The 7D2 is a great camera with an AF system that is hard to beat, but not the best image quality in poor light. The frame rate is top notch! It is a crop 1DX2
The 80D is also great, but not as good for the AF system, but to be fair, you have to really be pushing things to notice the difference. If you are focal length limited the 7D2 and 80D give you more pixels on target, slightly more with the 80D

The 6D2 is significantly better in low light, but worse for AF system and frame rate. It shoots great video and the articulated touchscreen interface is top notch!

the R and the RP are both close to the 6D2, except Mirrorless. One a bit better, one a bit worse. Both should be great in low light (I have not used either) but for sports the burst rat is too slow. Also( and I repeat that I have not used on3 personally) I am told that the AF system is no as good.

medium cost:
The 5D4 is hard to beat, it does everything better than the 7D2 except frame rate and pixel density. The AF point spread is better on the 7D2, but realistically, if you are good at tracking the action it does not matter. Of course, in low light, FF beats crop every time.



To me, the big factor is the lighting where you are shooting. If it is poor, you really want FF. If it is good, either is good.

If you are shooting fast moving sports and/or trying to get that perfect instant in time, frame rate is very important. I know the math does not work, but 10fps seems to be about five times better than 6fps.....

The conventional wisdom is that if you are focal length limited, go crop. However, with your F2.8 lenses, go try out a FFcamera with a teleconverter. This could give you the best of both worlds. You could also look at the Tamron 150-600G2, it is very hard to beat for the price.

A 5D3 is also an option, as is a used 7D2.

Good luck making a choice and I hope I helped.
I totally agree! :)
 

Quirkz

EOS T7i
Oct 30, 2014
88
22
The other question to consider is can you wait for a bit? Everyone is expecting a new 7d3 and 90d in the next year or so. If you’re in no rush, they would be well worth the wait.

Also, have you considered going 2nd hand for a 1dx 1 or 2? Might knock the price down enough to be worth it to you.
 
Reactions: Don Haines

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
Mar 25, 2011
15,166
474
Since you noted the lighting challenge, even with f/2.8 lenses, you should realize that even the latest APS-C sensors are not going to change that.

To improve the lighting issue by a reasonable amount, you need either a faster lens, or a FF body. A 135mm f/2 would help, but its not a zoom. What is your budget? A 7D MK III is going to run close to $1800 maybe more, you can get a gray market 5D MK IV for that, and greatly improve the low light situation. It has excellent autofocus as well. A used 5D MK III would also be a excellent camera, but does not have the dual pixel sensor.

I'd consider a used 5D series before a 7D MK II which is very dated and not likely to help with your low light issue by much if any.
 

QuisUtDeus

EOS T7i
Feb 20, 2019
97
69
I wouldn't want to use a 7D series if light's an issue. If you can spring for a 5D4 (or 5D3) they would do much better, especially if you could then also make do with a fast prime.