The EOS 80D was released in February 2016. Intended to succeed the EOS 70D, it has undergone further enhancements from the latter. We met the developers to find out more about the evolution of the body as well as the concept of this high-end middle-level camera, which offers the latest technologies and greater ease of use to address the needs of a wide group of users. (Reported by: Ryosuke Takahashi Group photo by: Takehiro Kato)
(Back row from left) Kohei Furuya (ICP R&D Center 2)/ Koji Ikeda (ICP Development Center 2)/ Terutake Kadohara (ICP R&D Center 2)/ Takashi Ichimiya (ICP R&D Center 2)/ Yuichiro Sugimoto (ICP Division 1)
(Front row from left) Takafumi Kishi (ICP Development Center 2)/ Masahiro Kobayashi (ICP Division 2)/ Nobuyuki Inoue (ICP Development Center 2)/ Koji Sato (ICP Development Center 1)/ Yutaka Watanabe (ICP Development Center 1)
Q: What users does the EOS 80D target?
“[The EOS 80D] is positioned somewhere in the middle of the EOS family. Besides advanced amateurs, we also hope to attract users who are purchasing a DSLR camera for the first time”.
What characterises this camera is the strong emphasis on beginner users while incorporating features for more serious photography.
Q: Are there also improvements to viewfinder magnification and coverage?
“The viewfinder coverage of the EOS 80D has been improved to about 100%. The magnification is about 95%, while the dioptric adjustment range is set to approximately -3.0 to +1.0m-1 (dpt) at approximately 22mm eyepoint”.
The main feature is, of course, the coverage of about 100%. At the same time, there is also great significance in having the same coverage for both the viewfinder and the Live View function.
B: Light Guide for Translucent LCD Illumination
C: Translucent LCD (PN-LCD)
D: Focusing Screen
E: Information Display LCD Prism
F: LCD for Displaying Information outside the Viewfinder’s Field of View
G: RGB+IR Metering Sensor
H: Eyepiece Lens
Q: What efforts were made to control the mirror during high-speed continuous shooting?
“We tried to reduce the shock for both the main mirror and secondary mirror pre-emptively before an impact.”
The key consideration behind achieving high-speed continuous shooting is how to minimise the mirror vibrations during the process. To tackle this issue, the developers “tried to reduce the shock for both the main mirror and secondary mirror pre-emptively before an impact.” The EOS 80D adopts a direct drive system that uses a motor without a spring so as to reduce the impact from the movement of the mirror.
A: Bound Prevention Mechanism for Main Mirror
B: Secondary Mirror Drive Mechanism
C: Drive Motor Unit
Q: How do we decide when to use each of the four AF area selection modes?
The basic functions are the same as those on the EOS 70D.
“[The new Large Zone mode] allows for AF on a wider area compared to Zone AF, and is therefore suited for subjects with vigorous movements. We also recommend this mode for users who wish to set a rough focus on a wide area by positioning the subject in one of the three zones”.
Large Zone AF
45-point Automatic Selection AF
Q: How does having 45 AF points benefit users?
“[With the substantial increase in the number of AF points], users can now determine the point to focus more precisely according to the composition. Not only can a wider area be used for capturing a moving subject, the camera is also able to establish focus on a specific point more easily in the automatic selection mode.
The larger number of AF points is therefore likely to bring about dramatic changes to the users’ photographic approaches.
Q: What are the advantages of the Intelligent Viewfinder?
It allows users to check a wide variety of information visually through the viewfinder.
“Some of the items that can be displayed include AF area selection mode, grid, aspect ratio line, flicker detection icon, warning symbol, area AF frame and electronic level”.
Q: What are the advantages of the camera’s compatibility with NFC?
“It allows the EOS 80D to be connected easily to NFC-compatible smartphones or the Connect Station”.
As connection can be established simply by moving the camera and the device to connect to close to each other, images can be transferred or stored very easily. It is likely that more uses of this function will be developed, and we might see major changes in how NFC is being utilised in future.
A: Wi-Fi Unit / B: NFC Unit
Q: What is the touch-screen LCD monitor capable of doing?
“It allows you to operate the camera intuitively, from setting to shooting and playback”.
The representative functions of the touch-screen LCD monitor are Touch AF and Touch Shutter. Touch-screen operation on the Quick Control screen is also convenient. Menu selection and setting are also possible by touching the screen. For more seamless selection, simply swipe your fingers across the screen.
Q: What are the reasons for renewing the kit lens?
EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM
While the new kit lens, the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, has the same focal range as that of the EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, it was “based on a concept which offers greater compatibility with movies as well as a faster AF speed”. The largest difference is the introduction of Nano USM, an actuator that has been newly developed for AF.
Q: What types of shooting style does the new kit lens excel in?
EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM mounted to the EOS 80D
“It offers high-speed and high-precision AF for still image shooting, which allows you to establish the focus speedily when capturing fast-moving subjects. Meanwhile, AF for movie shooting is also quieter and smoother than before”.
The zoom ratio is high with a focal range of 18 to 135mm, thus allowing the lens to come in handy regardless of the type of scene. This new kits lens is recommended if you are particular about the AF speed.
Q: How do we use the Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1?
Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1
“It is an electrically-powered and detachable zoom adapter that is driven using four AAA batteries. You can adjust the zoom speed by operating the speed mode switch and zoom lever. Remote zooming is also possible with the use of EOS Utility or Camera Connect”.
The new Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 will help to broaden your photographic horizons in both still image and movie shooting.
Q: Can the Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 be used for capturing still images too?
“Yes, you can indeed”.
The Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 is not developed solely for movie shooting. It supports remote zoom operation using EOS Utility and the Camera Connect app, so you can employ it too when you want to capture still images of overhead views or when shooting from a remote location. It comes in handy in a wide variety of scenes, such as wildlife photography or remote-control shots of nightscapes.
Q: Can the Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 be attached to all of Canon’s interchangeable lenses?
“No. Currently the Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 is only compatible with the EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM”.
At this point in time, the Power Zoom Adapter PZ-E1 can be used only with the new kit lens. However, attachment is simple and therefore it is very likely that more compatible lenses will appear in future.
Born in Aichi in 1960, Takahashi started his freelance career in 1987 after working with an advertising photo studio and a publishing house. Photographing for major magazines, he has travelled to many parts of the world from his bases in Japan and China. Takahashi is a member of the Japan Professional Photographers Society (JPS).
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