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[Part 1] Comparing moving subject tracking performance

The EOS 7D Mark II, launched after nearly 5 years of development in the background, boasts specifications superior to the EOS 7D in almost every way. How do the improved features benefit your shooting experience? In this series, we will explore the many capabilities of the EOS 7D Mark II from eight different points of view. Part 1 sees us comparing the camera's moving subject tracking performance. (Report: Ryosuke Takahashi, Model: Hitomi Otsuki (Oscar Promotion))

CHECK 1: Subject tracking performance

Which has better focusing capabilities?

Testing method

Set up the multi-arm on a tripod and then set up the EOS 7D Mark II and EOS 7D on it, fitting both cameras with an EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM. Set the cameras to AI Servo AF+High Speed Continuous Shooting+Automatic Selection AF (with default settings for others) and activate the shutters at the same time with a simultaneous shutter release that can accommodate up to 5 units. Finally, see the difference in focusing capability by comparing photos of human subjects.

EOS 7D Mark II

AI Servo AF III

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EOS 7D

AI Servo AF II

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Intelligent AF keeps subjects in focus

The EOS 7D Mark II's moving subejct tracking performance is controlled by the 65-point all cross-type AF sensors and EOS iTR AF. While one may well say the difference is in the number of focus points, the EOS iTR AF function not found on the EOS 7D automatically detects faces on the screen. The camera's biggest feature, however, is its ability to continue tracking subjects with a new tracking algorithm. This is best seen in the shots of a woman throwing a frisbee that have been taken under the same conditions as shown in the example. Unlike the EOS 7D Mark II which is able to detect and track faces with its multiple focus points, the EOS 7D uses an algorithm that gives AF priority to closer subjects without changing the focus points. As a result, the focus point ends up in an unintended position. In the EOS 7D Mark II, the focus is maintained on the face even if the arm and frisbee get closer to the camera. The camera does not end up with front or rear focus.

As the EOS 7D Mark II is able to continue tracking the specific colours of subjects captured initially, including non-human subjects, its prowess can also be fully utilised when shooting animals and motor sports. Because the EOS 7D is not equipped with a tracking system, the camera will inevitably focus on the same point in the foreground or background when the subject changes positions. This ability to closely track the horizontal movement of a subject is a feature of the AF system of the EOS 7D Mark II.

*This design was produced using a prototype model. As a result, please note that the actual product may differ in terms of the appearance, image quality, etc.

Ryosuke Takahashi

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).

Digital Camera Magazine

A monthly magazine that believes that enjoyment of photography will increase the more one learns about camera functions. It delivers news on the latest cameras and features and regularly introduces various photography techniques.

Published by Impress Corporation

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