Hallelujah! The Canon 7D Mark II Is Here!


Canonistas rejoice!  One of the most popular cameras in Canon history is back with a new and improved version.  The Canon 7D Mark II was just announced, and I have a feeling it's going to be just as popular as the previous version.

The original Canon 7D was announced back in August of 2009.  2009!  So it's definitely time for a refresh.  Let's see what's new.

  • 20.2 megapixel sensor
  • 10 frames per second (!!!) with a 31 raw buffer and a 1096 jpg buffer
  • 65 point all cross-type autofocus system (!!!)
  • Phase detection on sensor allows for video recording with autofocus
  • Dual Digic 6 image processors
  • CF and SD card slots
  • GPS
  • 100 – 16,000 ISO (expandable to 51,600)
  • Approximately 100% viewfinder coverage (anxious to see what Canon means by “approximately”)
  • 3″ LCD with 1,040,000 dots of resolution
  • Built-in intervalometer for time lapse (first time I've seen this on a Canon)
  • USB 3.0
  • New battery with higher capacity, but still compatible with the older LP-E6 batteries

Price: $1,799

It's rare that I'm impressed by a new camera anymore, but I'm blown away.  I've been seeing the rumors on the Canon 7D Mark II for a long time, but I couldn't believe them since they all looked so… unbelievable.


What's Cool About This Camera?

Did you read the specs?!?!?  There is a lot to like about the features that Canon has packed into the 7D Mark II, and the price point of $1,799 is quite reasonable for what the 7D promises.

First of all, I've been asking–no, begging–for a crop sensor DSLR that packs all the pro features into one body.  Well, this is it.  In fact, many of the specs of the 7D Mark II outperform even the highest end Canon cameras.  The 7D Mark II has quite a bit more processing power (Two Digic 6 processors) than the $7,000 1DX, which has two Digic 5+ processors.  It also has more megapixels of resolution (2 more), more autofocus points (4 more), and more cross-type autofocus points (44 more).  Make no mistake, I don't pretend the 7d Mark II is a 1DX killer by any means, but it's incredible to see that level of specification in a camera that costs 1/5 the cost.

The upgraded processors do two things for the photographer: (1) it means you can handle very fast frame rates, and (2) it means better image processing for supreme image quality.

Aside from the processors, I'm very glad to see Canon adopting the two memory card slot format in a crop sensor camera.  Having one CF card and one SD can improve write speeds and still offer compatibility for a wide range of cards.  Wedding and event photographers love the dual card slots because it means you can always have a backup of your pictures on another card so you don't have to worry about a corrupted memory card ruining an event's worth of irreplaceable photos.

Without a doubt, though, the killer feature of the 7D II is the autofocus system.  I'm anxious to pick one up for myself and try it out, but the specifications are impressive to say the least.  The autofocus specs promising 65 autofocus points are fantastic, but the question remains how it actually focuses in real life.  That, is yet to be determined.


What's Missing from the 7D Mark II?

I was slightly surprised not to see 4k video recording along with the specs of this camera.  With dual Digic 6 processors I would have expected that adding 4k support would be within the engineering bounds of possibility, but the resolution is limited to 1080p at 60fps up to 16,000 ISO.  You can see some of the Canon-produced videos with the 7D Mark II here, along with one from Scott Kelby and Matt Kloskowski, whose recommendation Canon purchased at the start of the year.

No wi-fi.  Ack!  Even my bathroom scale has wifi!  Why in the world do camera manufacturers keep leaving this one out, or crippling the functionality of the wifi?

Where to Pre-Order Your 7D Mark II

Amazon is taking pre-orders here.  Take it from one who has waited for many cameras to arrive on my doorstep.  Order with Amazon right away and choose next-day shipping to get your camera quick.  The first batch of deliveries will happen on the release date of November 28, 2014, so get your order in before the rush when this thing will be backordered for months.

The above link is an affiliate link.  I receive a small commission from Amazon on gear you purchase through affiliate links to support this site and the years of work I've put into it.  Other sites like B&H and Adorama also offer affiliate programs, but I primarily stick with Amazon because that's where most of you like to shop.  Thank you for supporting Improve Photography.




10 thoughts on “Hallelujah! The Canon 7D Mark II Is Here!”

  1. Wonderful to see Canon stepping up and putting some HUGE features into a crop sensor body. Wish I could get my hands on one but alas, being a college student takes all my spare money 😉

  2. Samsung announced the nx-1 and you’re blown away by the specs of the 7dmk2? Really?
    Sure, Samsung has to proove the quality of their glasses but the specs are more impressive, especially by the lower price tag….

    1. @Mindfest – The NX1 looks really cool, but doesn’t have the lens system behind it to make it usable yet. Glad to see they have a 70-200 equivalent and they are going to be making a 300, which is awesome. As soon as they make a pro quality wide angle, I’m anxious to give it a try.

  3. if i were a canon user, i would be asking about getting rid of the anti aliasing filter. the images taken from cameras without them are ridiculously sharp. sharp enough to save you a ton of time editing wedding pictures…

  4. I initially thought this price point for a crop sensor camera was way too high, especially being an owner of the 7d myself. Seeing as you can get a Canon 6d full frame for 100 more dollars. But, WOW, this camera looks so very impressive. I need a couple more jobs and to sell my 7d and I may have to try the Mark II. Looks very impressive. Jim, excited to see what you think if you get your hands on one.
    Love the podcasts, website and your videos.

  5. I usually try to ignore new releases as it only makes me wish for more than what my budget allows, but this one I did take a look at and WOW! Thanks for keeping us up to date. I do still have a few questions about the capabilities that I addressed at http://www.momslovinphotography.com. I would be anxious to know what you think about high ISO quality on the 7d Mark II? vs. the 6d?

    Cannot wait for your review!

  6. There are always newer, bigger, better cameras coming out. I wish this had been an option when I chose to get serious and purchase a top-level camera, but I bought more than enough camera when I got the 5D mkiii. I appreciate everything you do. I’ve learned more from your podcast/website/videos than my university classes. Keep up the phenomenal work, Jim!

  7. Hi Jim,

    For my sports photography i now use a 1D mk II, with some L sports lenses.

    I am now looking to upgrade and am contemplating to pick up either this camera or a refurbished 1D mk IV. What are your thoughts? The new AF and extra reach look apealing (i have a 5DII for Wide angle work), but will it be on par you think?

    Would love to hear your (or someone else’s from the community) thoughts!



    1. Theo,

      I got a 7D Mark II when it first came out. I can’t tell you how pleased I am with the autofocus system. I used it on a shoot this weekend and it is very fast. I’ve also used it in sports situations and really like the Intelligent Tracking. I don’t remember if the Mark IV has these AF features, but it is worth its weight in Gold for sports shooting.

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