How I Feel About EOS 70D

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Well, in the first part I have told you my reason behind the switch from Nikon to Canon. And in this part, let me tell you how I feel about the EOS 70D after 4 days of usage. Hang on!!!

First … The Autofocus Department

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One of my biggest complaint on D7000 is the way it handles autofocus, which often results on a backfocused images. EOS 70D is equipped with (maybe) the same autofocus unit from EOS 7D, which is proven to be very good. After a massive usage on a friend’s wedding (yes my friend,please feel special that I used a brand new camera unit to capture your wedding), and even though it has 20 dots less than the D7000 (39 vs 19), the focus point is very accurate. 19 crossed type focus spreading from end to end versus 9 cross point grouping only at the center, I think the 70D’s focus system still beat the Nikon. I might get some images with soft focus, but at least the position of focus is clear on target.

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Second test of the camera is on a Christmas concert on my church, where the lighting set is unpredictable. Again, the 70D performs very well, even tough I’m only use Tamron’s 17-50 non-VC lens for the shot. The image captured is briliant. But wait … To be fair, on a location that very dim, I must give Nikon a big thumbs for having an AF Assist Lamp (the big torch) to assisting the autofocus. I must admit that for a shot on a very dark target (like the audience), the autofocus often gave up. It’s very hard to focus on almost complete dark target. The only options on Canon side is by using IR AF assist from compatible speedlite.

Second … The Body

I have to admit … holding the 70D is waaayyy much better that holding the D7000. At some point, it’s even much better than holding the 7D. It’s like the size is perfectly fit for my medium sized hand. The weight is also good, and even though the body is made by polycarbonate resin (a.k.a plastic for some people), it’s solid and firm. I  didn’t hear any cracking or plasticky feels on the body. The D7000 has some kind of cracking sound when you squeeze the grip little bit harder. I stands for about 8 hours on the wedding while holding 70D with 24-105 f4 L attached, and my fingers is not complained like the way it used to be with D7000 and AF-S 18-105 (but for my feet, that’s hurt hahaha).

The button placement is also very good (love the ISO button on the top), and the fact that I don’t have to push a button while rotating the dial to change value (like the Nikon) is a big plus for Canon. 

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The touch screen and flippery-swivelly LCD screen … those features is great. I saw in the net that some people hate those two, but for me it’s so much helpful. I like the fact that I could do a ‘smartphone gesture’ on the screen while browsing through images, zooming, and doing the setup. Doing everything is now quicker with the touchscreen. And the swivelly thing … when you love to shot macro on the ground, you’ll love it very much. Combine it with the blazing fast Dual pixel AF CMOS, it’s like heaven!!!

What? The 98%-only viewfinder?? Ignore that, since everything more than 95% is enough for you to get the frame composed perfectly.

Okay, here a little complains from me … The top LCD. Being a frequent user of Nikon’s top LCD, seeing the 70D’s top LCD is like a bunch of informations is missing. I (and I think other photographers too) need the White Balance indicator and the Image Quality indicator. I hope Canon realized this and put it on the next 80D.

And then the small focus mode selector button near the shutter button is hard to find. I need time to guess where the button is using my finger. The button itself is very usable, but hard to find (feels).

Third … Out of Camera JPEG and Noise

First shot of 70D

For the JPEG resulted from the Canon sensor … I still struggle to get the same feeling I get with Nikon-Sony sensor. Out of the camera JPEG is personally better on the Nikon side. I love the skin tone of the Nikon (they said Nikon produce better skintone, I must admit it is true). The skin tone is colder and more pale on the 70D. But I think it’s all about preferences and settings. I should explore more on the White Balance Adjustment to get the preferable result.

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The noise? I still like the way Nikon handles noise, where the noise is more like a smooth distributed grain. But again, it’s all about personal preferences. 70D is resulting a good noise level, and if you not zoom it all the way to 200%, you’ll hardly notice the difference between those sensors.

Last … The 18-55 IS STM Kit Lens

Lot of people cursed the poor 18-55, and most people sold the poor 18-55 who comes with the body and switch them with nifty-fifty right away. While it’s not wrong to do that, I have to tell you to at least try the 18-55 IS STM lens before deciding to sell it (of course if you already have a bunch collection of L lenses, there is no use to keep this little one … but just try it haha).

I myself also have the same plan with the kit lens at the first place, but after reading some review on the net I hold the plan, and decided to try the kit first.

First, this lens focuses like a quiet cat. You will be suprised on how fast and how quiet the focusing is (you better turn the beeper on so you don’t get suprised haha). Don’t imagine the ‘Robocop’ sound like the old 18-55. The STM motor is quiet, just like an USM ring.

Second, this lens minimum focus distance is so short. It’s only needs 25cm from the sensor plane to get into focus. So put it on 55mm focal length, snap a flower from ~10cm distance, and walla … you have your macro lens.

Third, the body built is sturdier, the focus ring is not rotated while focusing, and there is a manual focus override (you have to use this while your shutter is half pressed) … I should call this The Kit L Lens (humm, gonna buy red sticker and cover the silver ring with a red one hahaha). But well … Canon need to put a metal mount and a weather-sealed construction to fully justify it as a L Kit Lens hahaha …

Conclusion

Only one word … Impressed!!! I’ll stick with this body for a long time hahaha … Regretting the switch? No regret, just a little bit sentimental about the switch … but let’s move on ^^

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