Canon today announced the successor to their EOS 60D DSLR, named the Canon 70D. Featuring a very interesting new Dual Pixel CMOS AF system that promises “instant and precise focusing of video as well as still images,” the EOS 70D also has a completely new 20.2 megapixel APS-C Canon CMOS sensor and uses Canon’s DIGIC 5+ Image Processor. The 70D is wi-fi connected, has a 19-point AF sensor (including a high-precision f/2.8 dual cross-type AF center point), a 63-zone Dual Layer IFCL (Intelligent Focus, Color & Luminance) AE metering system, an ISO range of 100 to 12800 (expandable to 25,600), and a vari-angle touchscreen LCD (allowing a “touch to focus” feature).
While the improved low-light performance, wi-fi and touchscreen LCD will grab some attention, the Dual Pixel CMOS AF system is the crowning feature of the 70D. Essentially, Canon has figured out how to have each pixel on the sensor perform both imaging and phase-detection AF simultaneously. This is achieved by each pixel on the CMOS sensor having two independent photodiodes sending independent signals that can be used for both imaging and AF. The result: AF speeds that Canon claims are 30 percent faster than the AF speeds on the EOS Rebel SL1, which employs Canon’s previous Hybrid CMOS AF II system. It also allows continuous phase detection AF during movie recording. Eliminating slow or jumpy AF due to contrast detection or hybrid systems will be a big deal for a lot of photographers who shoot video with their DSLRs. If the 70D’s AF performs as advertised, I predict that we will start to hear a loud roar of users wanting Dual Pixel CMOS AF across the Canon DSLR line.
“The new EOS 70D Digital SLR camera is a game-changing DSLR model that incorporates advanced features for high-quality still and video capture and intuitive operation that allows photographers to evolve their creative vision from shooting still images to shooting moving images,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, Canon U.S.A.
The EOS 70D Digital SLR camera is scheduled to be available in September 2013 for an estimated retail price of $1199.00 for the body alone; $1349.00 bundled with an EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens or $1549.00 bundled with the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens. Also available will be a new Battery Grip BG-E14 that conveniently accepts up to two LP-E6 battery packs or a set of six AA batteries for an estimated retail price of $270.00.