By site editor Dan Chung:
Announced yesterday the Canon 7D mkII at the Photokina trade show in Cologne. Strangely there was no-one we could speak to about the camera at the IBC show in Amsterdam – which was still running. Perhaps this says something about the camera – gone are the heady days of the DSLR revolution. Even though the 7D mkII has some significant video advances such as timecode and speed adjustable Dual Pixel CMOS AF, the company did not see fit to market it at Europe’s major broadcast show – even though they had a big booth there. Canon clearly don’t see the 7D mkII being aimed at video professionals.
From the outside very little has changed with Canon’s update of the 7D. The body styling is similar and the control layout is very similar to a 5D mkIII. Under the hood however lies a new sensor with Dual Pixel CMOS AF across 80% of its frame. There is a bump in frame rates up to 1080/60P, but there is no sign of 4K or newer codecs like Sony’s XAVC-S. HDMI output is clean and uncompressed 4:2:2, which means it should play nice with external recorders like the Atomos Ninja Star.
The autofocus speed adjustment feature allows the user to choose how fast or slow they want the AF system to track. This feature works in video recording mode and is one of the key advances in this camera. Face tracking AF is also on the 7D mkII. Another nice touch is that in video mode the AF can be paused at the touch of a button.
The rear screen on the camera isn’t touchscreen and can’t be articulated and this somewhat limits the appeal of the Dual-Pixel AF with this model – one of the nice things about the cheaper 60D is the ability to flip the screen out and drag the AF point to where you want it to be.
It is nice to see both a headphone jack and microphone socket on the camera – hopefully this is now a standard feature for cameras at this price. MP4 recording is also on the camera. The main unknown at the moment is the image quality. Hopefully we will find that out soon.