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Canon EOS 70D Review

Canon was essentially the unchallenged leader in CMOS image sensor technology in the early days of digital SLRs. When the EOS 7D was released in late 2009, the firm had advanced from 3MP to 18MP, and ISO 1600 to ISO 12800, in just over nine years. Almost every new EOS model also had an increase in resolution and a high ISO range. But ever since, Canon’s APS-C cameras have all included different iterations of the same fundamental sensor design, to the point where you might wonder what on earth their engineers spend their days doing. Now we are aware.

From the exterior, the EOS 70D appears to be logical, if not attractive, to upgrade to the EOS 60D. It is a mid-range SLR designed for hobbyist photographers. The autofocus sensor from the EOS 7D, the fully articulated touchscreen from the EOS 700D (Rebel T5i), and the built-in Wi-Fi from the EOS 6D are just a few of the best features it inherits from Canon’s current SLRs. However, it has a brand-new sensor on the inside that could be ground-breaking. Although it uses a “Dual Pixel CMOS AF” architecture, which divides each pixel into two individually readable photodiodes facing left and right, it has a 20.2MP resolution. This indicates that, in theory, they are all capable of using live view and movie mode phase detection autofocus.

On-chip phase detection is nothing new; the Fujifilm F300EXR introduced it in 2010. Since then, most manufacturers have incorporated it in one way or another, with Nikon’s 1 System mirrorless models possibly representing its most successful application. However, because it has only recently used a small number of active pixels dispersed thinly across the sensor, it has had practical limits. It frequently only covers a small portion of the frame and struggles once the light falls below that of outdoor daylight. Contrarily, Canon claims that it’s Dual Pixel AF system operates over an area occupying 80% of the width and height of the frame, in light conditions as dim as 0 EV, and at apertures as small as F11. As a result, it may very well be the most effective live-view autofocus technology we’ve ever seen on a camera.

Structure And Constituents

Although it is physically smaller than the EOS 60D, the EOS 70D has a design that is very similar to that of the EOS 60D. The majority of the body is made of plastic, but that shouldn’t be too much of a concern in this instance because it still seems like it was put together neatly. Some of the secondary shooting controls have been reorganized or relocated, although the primary shooting controls have remained in the same general locations throughout the whole game. Overall, there is not a lot of space left on the camera where more buttons could have been reasonably placed. This limits the number of controls that may be used.

The top of the camera.

The top of the EOS 70D may be compared quite favorably to the top of the EOS 60D. Direct access is provided to autofocus and drive modes, as well as metering and ISO settings, through the buttons that run along the top of the LCD screen. Each of these buttons serves a single purpose rather than performing several functions (which is easily changed with the camera to your eye).

The exposure mode dial has been simplified to group the various automated scene modes (portrait, landscape, sports, etc.) under a single position, and a pair of stereo microphones have been placed behind the pop-up flash housing in place of the mono mix that was on the front of the 60D. Both of these changes were made to improve the sound quality of the camera.

The control for expanding the focus area is located on the little button that can be found between the shutter release and the front dial. When you press it, you may extend the autofocus region from a single point to progressively bigger groupings of points, which is helpful when you’re trying to keep up with a moving subject.

The magnesium alloy builds that many of the 70D’s competitors offer is more reassuring than the polycarbonate and aluminum construction that the 70D has, though it’s difficult to tell whether there is much of a real-world difference in terms of its durability. The 70D’s construction is made of polycarbonate and aluminum.

Weather sealing

According to the specifications sheet for the Canon EOS 70D, the camera offers a level of water and dust resistance that is “similar to the EOS-1N.” The EOS-1N was Canon’s professional 35mm SLR camera during the middle of the 1990s. It is arguable how much significance this piece of information will have for the majority of purchasers, but the inference is that it should not be affected by a light sprinkle of rain.

Within your grasp

The EOS 70D has a good-sized grip and rests securely in your hand; anyone who has handled a recent twin-dial Canon EOS should be able to take it up and feel right at home with it. The EOS 70D also has a good-sized viewfinder.

However, if you wish to shift the focus point using the multi-controller, this involves a rather substantial movement of your thumb downwards. The majority of the important controls are well-placed for operation with the camera to your eye, but in order to do so, you must move the camera away from your eye. You may also move the autofocus point using the front and back dials, but you will first need to push the AF point selection button.

Touchscreen that Can Be Articulated
The touchscreen included in the EOS 70D is completely articulated, and it is quite comparable to the touchscreens found in the EOS 650D and EOS 700D. This indicates that it is far better than the one found in the EOS 60D, as the air gap that was previously present between the cover glass and the screen itself has been removed; as a result, visibility should be enhanced when exposed to strong light.

For the purpose of taking self-portraits, the screen can be flipped out and rotated so that it points directly downwards, upwards, or even forwards (in this position the camera handily mirrors the live view display). In addition to this, it may be folded up such that the screen is facing inwards toward the camera providing an additional layer of defense (or if you somehow prefer an old-fashioned film-camera experience).

Additionally, the screen is touch-sensitive and similar to Canon’s most recent entry-level models, each and every facet of the camera’s interface may be managed by touching the screen. When used in conjunction with the Q button on the camera, it enables a broad variety of settings to be altered in an expedient and user-friendly manner.

When shooting with the optical viewfinder, this won’t make much of a difference, and you should probably stick to using the normal “hard” settings as much as possible. However, it is actually helpful in live view or while shooting from a tripod because it enables the focus point to be picked (and, if you choose, the shutter release may also be initiated) merely by tapping the screen.

According to Canon, the screen’s high-sensitivity option makes it possible to use the device while wearing (thin) gloves. You also have the option to completely disable the touchscreen if you find that it is too annoying to use.


The viewfinder of the EOS 70D is made of glass and has a pentaprism design. It has a magnification of 0.95x and covers 98% of the image. This is an improvement over the 96 percent coverage that the 60D provides, and it brings it considerably closer to competitors like the Nikon D7100 and the Pentax K-3, both of which have 100 percent coverage and somewhat greater effective magnification than the 60D does.

Of course, it is still unable to compete with full-frame cameras like the Canon EOS 6D or the most advanced electronic viewfinders like the Olympus OM-D E-M1, in which the size of the viewfinder isn’t constrained by the dimensions of the camera’s image sensor (or, more accurately, the mirror in front of it).

In addition, the viewfinder of the 70D has been updated to include a gridline overlay that can be toggled on and off, as well as the nifty capability of using the AF array indications to display an electronic level in the viewfinder, which will help you maintain your horizons level (both features lifted from the EOS 7D).

The workings and the controls

Controls at the very top right of the camera

The control configuration on the right-hand top plate of the EOS 70D is essentially identical to that of the 60D. The only difference is that an additional button for expanding the AF area has been added between the front dial and the shutter release. The principal exposure parameter for the selected mode may be adjusted with the dial on the front of the camera.

program shift in the P position, the aperture in the Av position, and the shutter speed in both the Tv and M positions. Behind it is a strip of buttons that gives direct access to autofocus and drive modes, metering pattern, and ISO (the latter of which is noticeably better-placed for operation with the camera to your eye than the Nikon D7100’s), along with one that illuminates the top-plate LCD. Additionally, there is a button that allows you to adjust the exposure compensation.

Your thumb can operate the camera’s three buttons, which are located on the shoulder of the device. The camera’s autofocus may be activated by pressing the AF-ON button, and the ‘Star’ button located next to it serves as a programmable autoexposure lock.

When you push the AF point selector, which is located next to it, you will be able to relocate the focus point by utilizing the front and back dials, as well as the directional pad that is located within the rear dial. Magnification of the playback may also be accomplished using the last two buttons.

Controls at the top left of the camera

The power switch and mode dial are located on the other side of the pentaprism. This has the usual four exposure modes, which are Program, Aperture priority, Shutter priority, and Manual, in addition to a Bulb shutter mode and a single Custom position that may be defined by the user.

Additionally, there are modes such as “Auto+,” “Flash off,” and “Creative Auto,” with the latter providing results-oriented creative control. Additionally, there is an SCN position that combines Canon’s long-running scene modes such as “sport,” “landscape,” and so on into one location. The mode dial can revolve in any direction through the full 360 degrees because it does not have any end stops.

Below are two buttons that allow the user to go through the settings of the camera as well as modify the amount of information that is shown on the back screen.

Controls in the Rear

The remainder of the principal shooting controls of the Canon 70D is located on the rear of the camera and are mostly laid out for use with the right thumb. The live view and movie mode controllers are merged into a single unit that is located next to the viewfinder. When the switch is set to the still position, pushing the center button activates and deactivates the live view.

If you move the switch to the movie position, the camera will immediately convert to a movie live view and display the scene in a 16:9 aspect ratio. After that, pressing the Start/Stop button will begin and end the recording.

While you are shooting, pressing the Q button will bring up an interactive control panel. This screen will allow you to alter camera parameters that might not be accessed directly through the other buttons on the camera.

In addition to this, it incorporates superimposed option menus in the Live View and Playback modes, providing quick access to functions such as the ability to convert Raw files in-camera. The delete key is located nearer the bottom of the camera, while the playback button is located just below it.

Adjusting the exposure compensation in the P, Av, and Tv modes, as well as changing the aperture in the M mode, is done via the back dial. Incorporated inside it is an 8-way controller that may be used to do tasks like adjusting the focal point, accessing menus, and scrolling through pictures while playback is in progress. Using the switch that is located under the rear dial, one may prevent unintentional modifications to the settings by locking the dial.

Controls located on the front of the camera

A motorized (as opposed to a mechanical) release is activated when the user presses the button that activates the flash, which is customarily located on the side of the lens throat.

The preview button for the lens’ depth of field is located on the side of the lens throat opposite the handgrip, and it is intended to be controlled with your left hand. It is modifiable, so users may have access to a variety of various functionalities.

To tell you the truth, we are not major lovers of this position. It might be tough to reach when shooting in portrait format or with the camera mounted on a tripod.

The connection provided via Wi-Fi

The Canon EOS 70D is the newest model produced by the business to incorporate Wi-Fi connectivity into its cameras. It is still uncommon to find this function incorporated into a DSLR camera, but we believe it will become increasingly popular in the near future.

According to Canon, it complies with the 802.11b/g/n standards and has a transmission range of up to 30 meters (98.4 feet). It is important to keep in mind that while Wi-Fi is enabled, the movie mode cannot be used, and any physical connection to a computer or printer will be severed.

The following is a complete list of the features that are offered:

  • Images may be sent between Canon cameras equipped with Wi-Fi.
  • Connect with your mobile phone or tablet (via EOS Remote)
  • Remote control from PC (via EOS Utility)
  • Produce prints using a printer that supports Wi-Fi.
  • Send the file to the web service (e.g. Canon iMage Gateway)
  • View photos on devices that are equipped with DNLA (e.g. TVs)

Although we will focus most of our attention on connecting the EOS 70D to a mobile device, it is feasible to connect the camera to a personal computer and use Canon’s EOS Utility to operate it by connecting it to the computer through Wi-Fi. This indicates that it is also possible to utilize a “tethered” connection to other applications that can connect via similar means, such as Adobe’s Lightroom. Specifically, the tethered connection may be used to transfer data.

The camera allows you to save up to three different presets for the various connections that you frequently use, with the intention of making it easier to reconnect in the future.

The EOS Remote app for Android and iOS

The ability to get photographs from the camera while away from a computer is one of the most common applications that we discover for built-in Wi-Fi in cameras. These images may then be shown to other people or uploaded to the internet. It may be useful for showing a photograph to its subject, sending them a JPEG of the image, or even just chronicling a weekend trip on a social network. All of these things fall under the category of “convenient features.”

The Canon implementation is detailed, but also very difficult to understand. For example, rather than just allowing a smartphone to connect to the camera, it is also possible to connect the 70D to a smartphone by connecting both devices via a common Wi-Fi network (the mode is aptly named “infrastructure” mode). This makes it possible to connect the camera to a smartphone without the camera having to connect to the smartphone first.

And this is where the connection presets are both a help and a hindrance: while they make it simpler to reestablish connections if you frequently use a variety of connection methods, the requirement that you continually define a preset each time you make a new connection is both time-consuming and annoying.

Adding the Wi-Fi option to the custom ‘My Menu’ page is not going to make a great difference in the performance of things, but it will make things somewhat faster. The fact that the business that makes the EOS 70D provides a 174-page pdf explaining all of its functions (there is also a 36-page ‘Basic Instruction Manual’ that outlines the important elements) can ultimately tell you a lot about how capable and how sophisticated the Wi-Fi is on the EOS 70D.

Shooting from a distance

The area of the program devoted to remote shooting provides users with a satisfactory level of control over the camera. You are able to focus the camera by manually adjusting the focus point on the camera. There is an option in the settings to add an autofocus acquisition button to the interface, but by default, the app is configured to focus and trigger the shutter at the same moment. The smaller circular ‘button’ that can be seen in these screen pictures is the AF acquire button.

After you have taken a picture, a little preview of it will show in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. When you touch this button, a row of pictures will appear at the bottom of the screen. From this vantage point, it is able to carry out a straightforward evaluation of the photographs, which includes the option to zoom in closer. There is no method to switch from the current mode of picture review to the complete image review mode which will be discussed later.

Examining the images and transferring them

Using the EOS Remote app, you are able to access all of the still photographs and videos stored on the SD card. It allows users to navigate between photographs by using movements that are common on smartphones, such as pinching, swiping, and double-tapping.

You may email or download 1920 x 1280 S2 JPEG copies of photographs to your device’s image gallery from within the image review part of the app. Other options include rating images that are stored on the SD card. These are convenient, but they are not good for critical picture analysis since you cannot gain an adequate notion of the focus accuracy from such few files. Although they are handy, they are not effective for critical image analysis.

It is possible to upload full-resolution JPEG photographs to the internet, but this must be done directly from the camera itself. To accomplish this, you will first need to connect the 70D to a computer through its USB port and use the Canon EOS Utility software, which comes bundled with the camera, to configure a web service that is compatible with the camera. Examples of such services include Canon’s iMage Gateway, Facebook, and Twitter. After configuring everything, you will be able to upload a single image or many photographs through Wi-Fi at full size, S2, or S3 quality, depending on the settings you chose.

Overall impressions, as well as the duration of the battery life

Overall, the Wi-Fi capabilities of the 70D are quite thorough, and it may be considered a selling point at a time when Nikon is supplying Wi-Fi via fairly difficult external adapters. The EOS Remote App is efficient and gives users a satisfactory level of control over the camera. However, as compared to the setup methods offered by Olympus and Fujifilm, the complete nature of the approach used by Canon weighs against it, adding complexity as well as additional procedures.

However, it is inevitable that the connection feature of the 70D will have some effect on the battery life of the camera. The battery life of the 70D will decrease substantially over time if Wi-Fi and GPS are both enabled at the same time. This is something that applies not only when you are actively using the camera, but also has an effect on the battery life of the 70D when it is put into sleep mode.

The power management of the Canon EOS 70D is identical to that of any other EOS DSLR if you are in the habit of allowing your DSLR to go into sleep mode rather than shutting it off (as many photographers do), and if Wi-Fi and GPS are switched off. You may take out your camera many days after you have set it into sleep mode, and the battery level will be practically the same as it was the last time you used it.

If, on the other hand, you let the camera go to sleep with Wi-Fi and GPS turned on, the 70D will drain its battery while it is sleeping. This will drain the battery to the point where, if you leave the camera for a couple of days, you may find that the battery is significantly drained, if not completely depleted.


Overall performance

The Canon EOS 70D is fairly quick, from starting up to autofocusing, and it now has to autofocus in live view, which is typical of single-lens reflex cameras. Canon claims that the startup time is 0.15 seconds, which seems about accurate to us. The startup speed is as fast as it should be. When the autofocus region is limited to a single point or a smaller cluster, as we’ve said previously, the speed of the process is increased in both the live view and the conventional phase of the process.

The Canon EOS 70D has fast menus that remember where you were for simple adjustments of controls, and the My Menu tab allows you to keep your often-used controls in one place so that you can get to them more quickly. The Canon EOS 70D also has a quick response time to user input. Even while photographing motion, the Canon EOS 70D is quite responsive, and this is especially true when utilizing a fast memory card. When special settings such as HDR and Handheld Night Scene are used, there is a little increase in the processing time; nevertheless, this is not a significant issue, particularly when using a fast card.

Continuous Shooting and Buffered Continuous Shooting

It is an increase over the 60D’s 5.3 fps and even the 50D’s 6.3 fps, but it is still somewhat slower than the EOS 7D’s 8 fps. The maximum frame rate of the EOS 70D is 7, which is an improvement over the 60D’s 5.3 fps and even the 50D’s 6.3 fps. According to the results of our tests, its fastest rate is about 7.5 frames per second. This makes perfect sense when you take into account the fact that there is less processing required than there is when the camera needs to compress and store a JPEG. In high-speed mode, you are able to shoot around 11 Raw photos and 17 JPEGs (see the tables below for more).

Low-speed mode is useful when you don’t want to take quite as many pictures but still want to be ready for light activity, such as when children are your subjects, without filling the card quite so quickly. This is the case when you don’t want to record quite as many frames. The Canon EOS 70D is capable of continuously taking JPEGs at a rate of around 3 frames per second for as long as you maintain your finger on the shutter button.

Silent shutter

It is vital to keep in mind that the Silent shutter mode is not truly silent, despite the fact that it is meant to assist those who are working in environments in which a noisy shutter is not appropriate. Instead, the noise caused by the shutter is spread out over a longer time period, which results in a little reduction in volume overall. The high-speed frame rate likewise decreases, going from seven per second to three instead.

In Live View mode, the employment of a silent initial shutter curtain makes the sound appear even less audible, despite the fact that, according to our recording tests, the maximum decibel levels are around the same. Because the EOS 70D has an electronic first curtain, the mirror and the first shutter curtain do not move when using this model. This technology was initially introduced with the EOS 40D.

The Canon 70D can still take up to seven pictures per second in continuous drive mode when it is set to Mode 1, but when it is set to Mode 2, the process is a little bit different. In Mode 2, the main shutter mechanism fires to take the picture, but it doesn’t reset until you release the shutter button. This setting is helpful for taking pictures of wild animals. Because of this, the frame rate can only go as fast as the maximum speed at which you wish to film.

Battery capacity

The Canon EOS 70D is powered by the same lithium-ion LP-E6 battery pack as the Canon 5D Mark III and EOS 7D. This pack features 7.2 volts and 1,800 milliampere hours of capacity. When shooting with the viewfinder, Canon anticipates that you would receive up to one thousand photos, however when shooting in live view mode, they only anticipate you getting 230 shots, which is pretty disappointing.


Dual Pixel AF vs. Conventional AF accuracy

In order to gain a deeper comprehension of the functioning of the new technology, we devised a few experiments to evaluate traditional, dedicated phase-detect autofocus against sensor-based phase-detect.

As a general rule, we would anticipate that any on-sensor focus approach would be more accurate than the typical AF system of an SLR. This is due to the fact that it measures focus from the same plane where the image would be taken.

Since the conventional and dedicated AF sensor is located somewhere else in the camera, behind its own optics and a dual mirror assembly (each aspect of which will always be slightly misaligned), this means that it is not directly measuring focus; rather, it is taking a measurement as a proxy for focus in order to compensate for the fact that it is not measuring focus directly.

However, we anticipate that the variation in focus between the two systems will be rather minor for the vast majority of lenses. When working with the relatively modest apertures that are given by kit zooms, it is possible that any little imprecision will be hidden by the larger depth of focus. On the other hand, using lenses that have a big aperture, changes are likely to become more visible.

Accuracy and reliability of the AF

EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens from Canon

Because of its shallow depth of field and the lens aberrations that occur when the aperture is wide open, the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM is one of the most difficult lenses to properly focus. This is especially true when the aperture is fully open. However, the camera’s green and purple fringing in front of and behind the focus plane, which is caused by its axial chromatic aberration, has the advantage of making it simple to determine where the camera has focused.

The Dual Pixel AF technology exceeds the traditional autofocus system in a number of ways, including being more constant from shot to shot and more precise in terms of where it focuses. This is something that we would expect to see happen. It is interesting to note that it is not quite as precise as manually focusing the camera by utilizing both the live view button and the depth-of-field preview button to confirm that you are focusing on the aperture that you are using to capture the picture.

It’s interesting to note that when we put the EOS 60D through the same test, we received results that were comparable but not exactly the same. Switching to live view autofocus produced the same results as manual focus, putting its contrast-detect AF method ahead of the 70D’s Dual Pixel AF in terms of accuracy. The conventional phase-detection AF produced almost identically soft images but switching to live view autofocus produced the same results as manual focus.

It should not come as a surprise that contrast-detect autofocus is more accurate than phase-detect autofocus because it continues to move the lens until the optimal focus is achieved. However, it is important to keep in mind that contrast-detect autofocus is quite a bit slower than the Dual Pixel AF found on the 70D.

Actual-life Photographic Portrayal

You will be able to observe what those variations mean in a real-world photography environment through the use of the 85mm f/1.8 lens for a casual portraiture setting. When we focused on using the traditional optical viewfinder, we achieved results that were rather satisfactory, if not quite razor-sharp.

However, for one of our five images, the camera was able to obtain results that were even better than those seen in this shot, which reflects a result that is pretty usual. On the other hand, the Dual Pixel AF system generated better results than the traditional method on a constant basis; the five photographs that we took are nearly indistinguishable from one another.

On the other hand, we were able to get the absolute best results by either manually focusing or making use of the live view autofocus while utilizing a significantly enlarged (10x) live view. Because the AF points of the Dual Pixel AF system are far bigger than those of a normal PDAF sensor, it is not always feasible to precisely put the focus point where you want it to be. This is one of the drawbacks of the Dual Pixel AF system.

Although we were able to attain a more exact placement in this photograph by making use of the 10x magnification, this technique is by no means the best one to utilize when taking portrait photos. We were so focused on getting the shot that we didn’t realize our subject had moved around in the frame when we were zooming in.

Autofocus micro-adjust (for viewfinder phase-detect AF)

When combined with the standard phase-detect AF system, the use of autofocus micro adjust makes it possible to get much improved results. This feature, which can be found in the custom function menu of the camera (C.Fn II 13), gives you the ability to bias the focus location of the lens forward or backward in comparison to where the AF sensor believes it should be. You can correct the issue if the lens regularly focuses either behind or in front of the subject of your photograph.

With lenses from a third party: the Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM

When we tested the Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM, we discovered that the majority of Canon bodies had trouble focusing it accurately, despite the fact that it has excellent optical quality. It is a lens that, like the 85mm, has a wide aperture that has the ability to dramatically highlight any mistake in focus.

Kit Lens

Keep in mind that shooting in the real world does not always include shooting high-contrast subjects with fast telephoto lenses. This is another important consideration to keep in mind. Any difference in precision that existed between the traditional focus system and the Dual Pixel AF system is eliminated when used with the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM kit zoom.

It’s possible that this is because of the new STM design, but the fact that it has a narrower maximum aperture also means that you won’t see a significant change in a lot of different shooting scenarios. These studies were carried out at a variety of focal lengths and distances, and the results that were shown above are indicative of what we saw from each combination of those variables.

Dual Pixel AF’s tracking and continuous shooting capabilities have their limits.

These tests are all quite good; however, Dual Pixel AF does have certain drawbacks, the most notable of which has to do with keeping up with a moving subject while continuously shooting. The Canon EOS 70D features a setting called “Face Detect + Tracking,” which allows the camera to follow your subject’s faces as they move across the frame while maintaining focus on them.

However, if you combine this with continuous shooting at either high or low speed, the camera will lock the focus on the first picture and will not make any attempts to refocus for subsequent images. This applies to both high and low speeds.

Worse of all, the screen goes entirely dark during continuous filming, turning the entire process into something of a game of guesswork, especially when panning to follow a moving subject. When taking still photographs, this essentially renders the Dual Pixel AF mode unusable outside of the confines of a “one-shot” scenario.

This behavior is sadly reminiscent of mirrorless cameras from the previous generation, which functioned in a manner quite similar to how they do now. When compared to the most recent models, which have continuous shooting settings that show live view between frames and can refocus between photos, this one appears to be rather out of date.

This forces them to shoot at a slower pace compared to their fastest potential rate; nonetheless, the Olympus OM-D E-6.5 M1’s frames per second (fps) with focus tracking aren’t quite slow. I have high hopes that Canon will continue to refine and advance the Dual Pixel AF system in much the same manner it has in the past.

An analysis of Dual Pixel AF in its entirety

It’s one of the quickest live view focus systems on a modern DSLR, so there’s not such a drastic difference in behavior when you switch to live view shooting as there is with other DSLRs. Our overall thoughts of the Dual Pixel AF system are fairly favorable.

Additionally, we have discovered that it provides much higher levels of accuracy and consistency when compared to the traditional AF method. It is important to note that even while you can use AF adjust to fine-tune the behavior of the conventional AF (and may very well need to do so in order to produce results that are passable), the setting has no impact on the autofocus that occurs in live view.

It is also important to note that the Dual Pixel AF system does not always utilize the same aperture that will be used to capture a picture; rather, it will use the diaphragm to regulate the amount of light that is allowed to reach the sensor. This is something that should be kept in mind. In the course of our research, we came to the conclusion that this factor may bring about a slight deviation in consistency.

if you are shooting photographs with a wide aperture in strong light since there is where you will have the highest mismatch between the functioning aperture value of the camera and the shooting aperture that you have set.

In general, we have discovered that the Dual Pixel AF has a very tiny degree of error when it comes to accuracy. Those who only use the lens that comes with the camera are not likely to notice the difference in focusing speed that we discovered between conventional phase detection and Dual Pixel autofocus. However, those who have an extensive lens collection or who intend to invest in faster zooms and primes will find that shooting in live view mode with the 70D is beneficial.

It is not accurate to say that Canon’s Dual Pixel autofocus is “only for video.” However, it does appear to offer a reasonable mix between speed and accuracy, which makes it a suitable option to turn to when sharpness is of the utmost importance, particularly when shooting at big apertures.

Overall, the results of our tests indicate that the 70D’s Dual Pixel AF offers the majority of the advantages associated with conventional phase-detection AF and the majority of the advantages associated with contrast detection, but it does not quite manage to offer all of the advantages associated with both.

Tracking AF

Sadly, Dual Pixel AF is not really useful for anything other than capturing movies or single images (see the movie page to see how it does). If you want continuous autofocus with tracking, 70D’s conventional autofocus technology is the only option available to you. We tested its ability to follow a moving subject as it approached the camera and moved from left to right across the picture.

Both an older 85mm USM lens and a newer 18-135mm STM lens performed quite well when paired with the Canon EOS 70D’s wide-area autofocus capabilities (set to 85mm to match). However, the LCD overlay points lighted up, followed our subject as she went toward the camera, and tracked as well as we had anticipated. There were more lost frames with the USM lens, but just one. For the purpose of simplicity, we will just provide the findings for the 18-135mm lens below.

Movie mode

It is anticipated that the Dual-pixel CMOS AF technology found in the Canon EOS 70D will represent a significant advancement in movie recording capabilities. In addition to recording video at a resolution of 1920 by 1080 at frame rates of 30, 25, and 24 frames per second, the 70D is also capable of recording a single still image or several still photos at full quality while maintaining the aspect ratio of the video being recorded (either 16:9 or 4:3).

The movies are recorded in MPEG-4 AVC format using the H.264 encoding standard. There are three different recording sizes and two different compression algorithms that may be used for the two different HD video modes: Interframe recording, often known as IPB, is a method that results in less data because it predicts and saves only the 14 changes that occur between keyframes rather altering each frame individually.

Because it compresses and preserves each frame in a movie, the file size produced by ALL-I, whose name is confusingly spelled Intraframe, is higher for people who work in high-end editing software. This is because ALL-I saves each individual frame. The resulting files can be up to three times as big as those produced by the IPB.

Full manual control over exposure is provided by the Canon EOS 70D; nevertheless, the P, Tv, and Av mode dial settings all default to program exposure. There is a choice to have the audio adjusted automatically or manually; however, there is no headphone jack to actually check the audio. There are stereo microphones included inside the device, as well as a 3.5mm stereo mic jack.

Tracking and drawing the focus in a movie

You can get the advanced movie-like effect of ‘focus pulling’ with very little effort by using the built-in touch-to-focus feature of the Canon EOS 70D, which works well when using the Dual-pixel AF, which is ideal for focus tracking while movie recording and also works well when using the camera’s built-in touch-to-focus feature.

Modes for Face Detection and Tracking

Face Detect and Tracking is the autofocus option that is selected by default for both the live view and video shooting modes. The Canon EOS 70D was able to successfully follow our subject while we were using the 18-135mm STM kit lens, although it did so in stages and not nearly as evenly as we had anticipated it would.

If you watch the deck work behind the subject, you’ll see that it doesn’t start to drift out of focus until approximately the four-second mark. After that, it shifts gradually as she travels forward in the frame. Bear in mind that it does not appear like it requires focusing until the four-second point, so keep that in mind as well.

(It is important to note that the quality of the movie that is displayed below will differ depending on your connection; thus, you should download the complete video if the visual quality is really important to you.)

Tap the focus button.

Again, when the camera is set to Face Detect and Tracking mode, the focus is initially placed on the subject’s face. However, a tap on the screen causes the camera to shift its attention to the Space Needle in the backdrop. On the initial pass, there is a little pause, but all future passes are completely uninterrupted. In this instance, we made advantage of the 18-135mm STM lens, which is known for its quieter and smoother AF capabilities.

Alternating the subject

When shooting in strong sunshine, the Canon 70D focuses quite rapidly on the subject, as seen in the video that was just referenced. Only once out of four attempts at several focal lengths with the 18-135mm STM zoom did the camera have any issues, and that was when it was set to a focal length that was close to 135mm. In general, it looked as though the 18-135mm lens would start searching as soon as the minimum aperture reached F5.6. This video (which may be found above) was filmed at around 85mm.

Either video or wifi, but not both at once

When enabled on the Canon EOS 70D, Wi-Fi prevents the camera from capturing videos for some reason. When you want to film a movie, it is quite inconvenient to have to go through the settings to activate and off Wi-Fi, which is generally as simple as flipping a switch. This is something that is normally very straightforward to do.

Having the other new feature, Wi-Fi, completely disable video capture is frustrating, especially in a camera whose primary innovations revolve around providing smooth autofocus in video. This is especially frustrating in a camera whose primary innovations revolve around providing smooth autofocus in video.

Quality of the Image

The low ISO JPEG output of the Canon EOS 70D is visually comparable to that of the Nikon D7100 (the apparent difference in size is due to the greater resolution of the D7100). When examined more closely, the reds and greens produced by the 70D have a little more vibrant quality, whilst the lack of an anti-aliasing filter in the Nikon is visible in the form of moiré.

When shot at ISO 1600, the resolution of the 70D’s fine detail appears to be somewhat crisper than that of the D7100, which appears to have applied greater noise reduction. It appears that the Canon applies a greater amount of sharpening, as seen by the “crunchy” tone transitions in the brush bristles.

Although the D7100 does a better job of rendering the scene’s text, there is not much of a noticeable difference when everything is scaled to “the same output size.” When things are at the absolute top of the range for both cameras, things seem rather noisy.

When looking at the Raw output from both cameras at low ISOs, the D7100 appears to have slightly more fine detail, but this is accompanied by some moiré and false color, as can be seen in the man’s sleeve in this illustration (this can also be seen in the image captured by the 70D, albeit not as prominently). Even when “matched for output size,” the 70D seems to exhibit more color noise than the D7100 while shooting at ISO 6400 in Raw mode. This is the case even when both cameras are set to the same resolution.

The fairly crude sharpening that we found in our real-world photography is immediately obvious when you compare “JPEG to Raw photos” – even when employing our general sharpening regime, the processed Raw file displays far more fine detail than the JPEG file does. This holds true even when using “higher ISO settings,” despite the fact that it is somewhat accentuated due to the fact that we have the noise reduction option in the Raw converter set to its lowest possible value.

Canon EOS 70D Specifications

Body typeMid-size SLR
Max resolution5472 x 3648
Other resolutions3468×2432, 2736×1824, 1920×1280, 720×480, 4864×3648, 3248×2432, 2432×1824, 1696×1280, 640×480,5472×3072, 3468×2048, 2736×1536, 1920×1080, 720×408, 3648×3648, 2432×2432, 1824×1824, 1280×1280, 480×480
Image ratio w:h1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels20 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors21 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (22.5 x 15 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorDigic 5+
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
ISOAuto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800 (25600 with boost)
Boosted ISO (maximum)25600
White balance presets6
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, Normal
File formatJPEG: Fine, Normal.RAW: RAW, M-RAW, S-RAW (14bit)
Optics & Focus
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousTouchFace DetectionLive View
Autofocus assist lampIntermittent firing of built-in flash
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points19
Lens mountCanon EF/EF-S
Focal length multiplier1.6×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3″
Screen dots1,040,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeClear View II TFT color LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeOptical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage98%
Viewfinder magnification0.95× (0.59× 35mm equiv.)
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/8000 sec
Scene modesPortrait, Landscape, Close-up, Sports, Night Portrait, Handheld Night Scene, HDR Backlight Control
Built-in flashYes (Pop-up)
Flash range12.00 m
External flashYes (Built-in flash works as wireless commander)
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Red-eye
Flash X sync speed1/250 sec
Drive modesSingle, Continuous L, Continuous H, Self timer (2s+remote, 10s +remote), Silent single shooting, Silent continuous shooting
Continuous drive7.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 sec, remote)
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpotPartial
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±3 (2, 3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes (3 frames in either blue/amber or magenta/green axis)
Videography features
Resolutions1920 x 1080 (29.97, 25, 23.976 fps), 1280 x 720 (59.94, 50 fps), 640 x 480 (59.94, 50 fps)
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (HDMI mini)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portNo
Remote controlYes (RS-60E3 cable release, RC-6 wireless remote, or using smartphone over Wi-Fi)
Environmentally sealedYes (Water and Dust resistant)
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLithium-Ion LP-E6 rechargeable battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)920
Weight (inc. batteries)755 g (1.66 lb / 26.63 oz)
Dimensions139 x 104 x 79 mm (5.47 x 4.11 x 3.09″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes (by USB cable and PC)

Final Verdict

Canon has restored some key features to its ninth-generation enthusiast DSLR after targeting the EOS 60D in a more consumer-focused market. This effectively reinstates a more affordable yet complete option for the increasing number of people who have embraced photography as both a hobby and a business.

The 70D offers a good selection of automatic fallback options for things like HDR, night photography, and remote flash control, as well as a strong, well-designed interface and complex collection of features for those who desire a little more control over their image capture.

The feature sets of Canon’s SLRs often cater to specific user demographics and price points. This might come across as cynical, but charitable interpretations would avoid clogging the interface by adding everything.

For the enthusiast user who wants a good range of control but doesn’t require many of the pro-oriented features found on the 7D, the features present in the 70D are about right.

Only three AF pattern possibilities are available, as opposed to the seven on the 7D, which would be overwhelming for the 70D user. The final camera has a sufficient number of practical features without becoming overburdened.

Canon EOS 70D Price

Pros & Cons

Good For
  • Fast and precise autofocus makes the articulating LCD for shooting from unusual angles even more helpful.
  • A satisfying amount of weight without being unmanageably enormous
  • Even images taken at a higher ISO than 6400 are suitable in most cases.
  • Excellent LCD with a touch screen that is responsive.
  • Using touchscreen results in fewer fingerprint smudges because of a special coating.
Need Improvement
  • Setup for the Wi-Fi network is difficult.
  • Due to the nature of Dual Pixel AF, tracking autofocus is not possible when shooting continuously.
  • A viewfinder that is just moderately sized
  • When filming continuously in live view, the LCD screen becomes entirely dark.
  • Integrated autofocus illuminator inside the flash (must have flash engaged to use it)
  • Movie mode is disabled when Wi-Fi is activated


Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Movie / video mode


The Canon 70D is a digital single-lens reflex camera that provides the majority of the features that an enthusiast seeks for in a digital SLR. At addition, it excels in both live view and movie mode focusing. The ability to take shots in a continuous burst and built-in Wi-Fi are merely bonuses that enhance the value of the product.

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The Canon 70D is a digital single-lens reflex camera that provides the majority of the features that an enthusiast seeks for in a digital SLR. At addition, it excels in both live view and movie mode focusing. The ability to take shots in a continuous burst and built-in Wi-Fi are merely bonuses that enhance the value of the product.Canon EOS 70D Review