As a lifelong wildlife lover, I have always found (wild) animals very fascinating and capturing them with my camera is now my favorite pastime. So when I recently had the opportunity to hold the Canon EOS R7 (opens in a new tab) on a small whale watching excursion in Sydney, I was startled. I jumped on board equipped with RF 100-400mm f/5.6-8 IS USM (opens in a new tab) and RF 600mm f/11 IS STM (opens in a new tab) The lens comes with the camera and as I expected, the R7’s performance is absolutely amazing!
It’s actually quite impressive what Canon has been able to do with its latest affordable, enthusiast-grade mirrorless camera – it does everything it says on the tin and does it well. . However, when viewing the results after returning home, I realized that an APS-C camera was not for me, at least not when I was trying to capture wildlife.
So I have a request to Canon…can we get a full-frame version of the EOS R7? You know, something with a 32MP stacked sensor, image stabilization, fast burst rate, good buffer depth, great autofocus, and subject tracking performance? That would really be great.
Why I want a 32MP full-frame mirrorless
My current snapper is Canon EOS 6D Mark II (opens in a new tab); you can go ahead and mock me for keeping my DSLR, but I still haven’t found a suitable full-frame alternative. And as someone who checks cameras for a living, I suppose that’s saying something.
I was so excited when Canon announced the EOS R7 – the spec sheet looks great, and I wanted to try it out for myself to see if I could eventually switch to a mirrorless system. And as a Canon user since the beginning of my photography journey, I’ve had lenses that can be used with an adapter – so it makes economic sense too.
However, it’s been a while since I’ve shot with an APS-C format camera, so while the EOS R7 itself can’t be faulted for its performance, I just can’t appreciate the images. that I finally get after putting them through the usual editing process.
Firstly, for something specific like trying to document whale violations (when marine mammals jump out of the water), it’s best to zoom out completely to get a wider vision because it is difficult to predict where they will appear next. Considering the APS-C sensor allows me more reach with the 100-400mm lens (about 150-600mm in this case), I’ve set the lens to mostly at 100mm (equivalent). That meant I had to crop considerably to zoom in on the offending humpback calf (which happens to be quite a bit).
As a result, I lost a bit of image quality, plus the smaller sensor doesn’t quite capture the details in highlights and shadows like in full-frame mode. So, while the photos I got of a breaching whale are perfectly fine to post on Instagram, there’s no way they’re high enough quality to enlarge and print, I fully admit, always is my goal.
I also miss the shallower depth of field I’m used to with full-frame sensors. Shot with EOS R5 (opens in a new tab) and my old 6D Mark II provided me with some nice background blur to separate the subject from the background more prominently. The R7, of course, gave me some of that but, if counted, it only dropped a little because of the smaller sensor.
While I didn’t need to use the EOS R7 in low light when shooting animals, I would be a bit concerned about the sensor’s performance compared to the larger imaging surface.
I know that the natural question to ask is probably, “Why not just buy the EOS R5 or R6?” Well, personally, the R5 is overkill for my needs – as much as I love the high-res sensor, I don’t really need 45MP and I don’t see myself needing to shoot 8K video any time soon – and it does too. quite expensive. On the other hand, the EOS R6 20MP (opens in a new tab) there’s just no sensor resolution to tempt me to switch to mirrorless from my 26.2MP 6D Mark II.
The R7’s price is just right, and while I know the full-frame version will be more expensive, if it gives me the speed and accuracy – and most importantly image quality – that I’m personally after, I’m willing to wait and spend more money.
In short, I really like a camera with good sensor resolution, autofocus speed and tracking accuracy similar to the R7, and image stabilization. 32MP seems to be my resolution appeal, and if it comes with a price tag that won’t put a hole in my already depleted pocket, even better.
So what about it, Canon? Ready to make fun of me?
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