The upgrade to the 3 year old Canon 60D is finally here. Well not until later this year, September to be exact. With the 60D being about 3 years old now and the 7D at around 4 years old Canon needed to release a top end APS-C dSLR for their line up. It’s not just an incremental upgrade there is something new inside that body.
The headlining feature is this Dual Pixel CMOS AF system which promises to change the way we shoot both still images and video. The new 20.2-megapixel APS-C-type CMOS chip has been designed to accommodate on-chip phase detection. Up until now on-chip phase detect systems have been a bit lacking. Usually only a handful of focus points scattered across the sensor’s surface. However with the new 70D a full two-thirds of it’ surface at the centre of the frame can provide phase detect. Most typical hybrid systems use phase detect for a ballpark distance and direction to focus at which point they fine-tune with contrast-detect AF. The 70D’s on-chip phase detect is accurate enough that fine tuning with Contrast Detect is necessary. I know video guys will be jumping for joy at this point. It basically means no more hunting around for focus points.
So what else is there?
Well obviously the new sensor which has had a resolution increase to 20.2mp, the sensor size is unchanged which results in a smaller pixel pitch, but Canon says it has improved the ratio of photodiode area to pixel area. They’ve coupled the new sensor with a new DIGIC +5 image processor.
ISO sensitivity range has been increased to 100-12800 and then the ability to expand to 25,600, if you so dare.
Everything is housed up in a new body which is slightly smaller than the 60D. It still retains the swivelling LCD monitor but now includes a touch-panel overlay, built in WiFi, a stereo microphone, and the same Live View control that we’ve seen on recent Canon dSLR’s.
An playing along nicely with the new on-chip phases detection system there is a brand new dedicated autofocus sensor, which isn’t really new cause it’s identical to the one used in the 7D.
Well it won’t be out till September 2013 but you’ll be looking at US$1,200 for the Body. There will also be two kit offerings 18-55mm STM for US$1,350 and 18-135mm STM US$1,550.0. There will also be a new battery grip that will be released at the same time coming in at US$270.00.
Are you a 60D user thinking of upgrading? Does this new AF system interest you? A the costing’s provided the 60D comes in at only US$800.00 cheaper than the full framed Canon 6D. I suppose the question is how will the rumoured Canon 7d MkII fit in.