Canon EOS 7D Feeding Frenzy!

A month ago Canon announced a new model, the EOS 7D. Ever since, there’s been a lot of buzz about the camera because of all the cool features it has, at a price that’s about $1000 less than the 5D Mark II (which caused quite a stir when it came out in 2008). Now the 7D is flying off the retailers shelves, and everyone is scrambling to get one. I saw it reported that Adorama had 700 of them but they’re all gone. People who ordered from Amazon.com are getting notices that their cameras have been shipped. My friend John in Sierra Vista says that his will be arriving tomorrow, so I’ll be stopping by his place when I go to the Patagonia Arts Festival next week to check out his newest toy!

The new 7D shoots at 18 megapixels, which is probably overkill for the smaller APS-C sensor it uses (it’s approaching the limit of how much resolution you can get from the lenses). But the camera also has a new improved autofocusing (AF) system and a brand new iFLC metering system, which uses the color of the subject that the camera has focused on to help determine exposure (this feature is long overdue!). And the video capture is their latest incarnation, which should be an improvement over that in the 5D Mark II and the Rebel T1i. Ever since I tried out the video on the 5D Mark II, I’ve wanted to have this capability, mostly to make video for my web sites.

The 7D sports two Digic 4 processors, so it’s fast and can shoot at 8 frames per second, nearly as fast as my 1D Mark III. It can capture 15 images before filling its buffers, which is fewer than the Mark III, but there’s nearly twice the pixels! You might be wondering why anyone would want to shoot that fast, but anyone who shoots wildlife, especially birds, can tell you that this is a Good Thing.

Another cool thing for wildlife photographers is that the APS-C sensor effectively “multiplies” your lens by a factor of 1.6, so using an affordable 100-400mm zoom lens on this camera body is equivalent to a 160x640mm lens!

So now the question is, do I buy the EOS 7D, or wait for the 1D Mark IV to come out?

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