Shooting the 7dMKII

Canon 7dMKII in Liveview.

The newly arrived 7dMKII is an amazing camera. According to Canon, it features 10 frames per second shooting speed, a great iso performance and a great image quality.
I wanted to test these specs in real life and went out to take some images. I was especially interested in how a crop camera would deal with high iso.

You will find the results on my flickr account here

The images taken with the 7d are all marked – 7dMKII.

General set up:
I shot in raw with a 7dII that i calibrated with a GretagMacBeth Colourchecker and the Adobe DNG profile editor ( My monitor was calibrated with the x-rite i1 display pro. After i openend the images in ACR, i applied the calibrated camera profile, opened the images in PS, sharpened them and created a jpg for display on Flickr.

The images are all out of cam, which means there is no crop or noise reduction applied. Only the dog image you see above was cropped by 50%, but also here no NR was used.

My Resumee: After i saw the image “Cora, Gizmo” that was shot at iso 1600, i went and bought the camera, so simple.
It is an action photo, the dogs were running around, and i needed high iso to freeze the action. I used zone AF (before i always only used center autofocus when shooting action), and the camera was bang on target. Though i shot at f/ 2.8 the eyes of the dogs are tack sharp, the Zone AF was working great. And i have to add that i shot a series of five images for this one, and ALL are tack sharp (!).
I also like the details in the fur of cora, you can see single hairs standing out. And look at the colour rendition. I gave cora an orange bandana, and gizmo had his red harness thing on. You can see clearly the difference between the colours.

But the best is the iso performance. It IS really good and no mere marketing hype of Canon. The Iso i used was 1600, and the image quality in the background is great. I did not use Dfine or the NR in ACR, this is the original iso you see. I would say the performance of this camera at iso 1600 is like the iso performance of my old 50d at iso 400.

And there is something else in the pictures that i cannot really describe – but look at the light in all the images and you know what i mean.

People who know me know that i am shooting with a 5dMKIII. And i can hear you ask the question why i added the 7dMKII to my bag now.
The answer is simple: for wildlife, sports and action shots you need reach. When you use a 200mm lens on a 5dMKIII, it is 200mm. When you use it on the 7dMKII, it is 320mm because of the crop factor. And this at f/2.8 (!). (go check what a 300mm f/2.8 lens will costs, you get the argument).

Someone called the 7dMKII the “little” 1d X. I am not going to compare those two cameras, because the 1d x is the 1d x, and you can still shoot with the 1d x at iso 6400 and get good results. I doubt you will get these with the 7dMKII. But for me as an ambitious amateur the 7dMKII seems to be the best camera for moving subjects and action at a reasonable price. This is why i now sold my 5 year old 50d and buyed the “little” 1d x.


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