Canon EOS 7D Review

Design

Canon EOS 7D review - Design

On first inspection of the Canon EOS 7D you may not notice much physical change from previous models to justify this ‘reinvention' tag - but once you start to use it you realise that there are significant changes in both handling and functionality. The body is made from a rugged magnesium alloy structure and weather sealing on a par with the professional EOS 1n film SLR, making it feel very sturdy. Buttons are plentiful but useful and well spaced to avoid accidental presses, with the large rotating dial featuring a lock function. The most significant changes to the rear are the positioning of the power switch and the addition of a dedicated live view/movie button. The power switch has moved up to the top left, which seems sensible if not slightly alien to existing Canon users.

The new live view button sits just neatly to the left of the thumb's natural position, with a start/stop button and a switch between the two modes. Other additions include a Quick button for access to the main feature set and a Raw/JPEG button, which adds dual format to the next shot, no matter which you are currently shooting in. The rest is reminiscent of the 5D Mk II and therefore already a proven success. The menu is divided into colour-coded icon-based sections, which can be scrolled through using the mini joystick control or the finger dial and large rear dial. A large number of buttons can be customised from the Custom Controls menu, from the lenses AF/Manual selection to the shutter button half press. In fact, the camera seems designed to be fine-tuned and customised to your own style of shooting. At first this can seem a little like overkill, but for extended use and those used to working in set ways, does make a great deal of sense.

The one criticism is that, with so many menus and option screens, finding the function you're looking for can be tricky, and until you get to know how it works you may find yourself experimenting with button combinations and having to scour sub-menus. Buy this camera now ! 

Canon 7D Review - Focusing

Canon EOS 7D Review sample image - click for full size image. 

The AF servo system allows rapid subject tracking, which made capturing these jumping skiers and snowboarders a much simpler task. Also, thanks to the eight frames per second burst rate, I could fire the shutter as they took off and pick out the best shot after. Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8, 200mm, f/2.8, 1/320sec, ISO 500, AWB