Canon 70D vs 80D: Evolution or Revolution?

Canon 70D vs 80D

The Canon EOS 80D has been out there for a while now and seen good reviews. This series has always been a favourite of ours, combining great ergonomics with more then enough features for hobbyists. In this post we list the most important improvements over the Canon EOS 70D, and see if the Canon 80D is a worthy successor, or just an evolutionary step. We will show the three areas with the biggest improvements, and wrap up with a list of other minor improvements. The Canon 70D vs 80D battle is on!

1. The Canon 80D has an All new sensor

A common critique on Canon camera’s over the last years has been the limited dynamic range in their RAW output. For competitors, the shadows can be pushed up to 5 stops with little to no noise.  This is literally a night and day difference. Doing the same operation on a Canon image would lead to a lot more noise. But with the 80D Canon finally resolved this issue, and gives us an all new 24MP sensor with a much anticipated increase in dynamic range as illustrated by DPReview here .

Canon 80D Sensor

Together with the new sensor we also get an upgraded DIGIC6 processor for faster operation and more advanced image and noise correction. This new sensor-processor combination also gives us a slightly higher maximum ISO of 16.000.

2. IMproved video functionality

The video capabilities of the Canon EOS 80D have been enhanced as well. First of all the camera can now also shoot in 1080P at 60FPS.

80D HDR Video

Secondly the camera now also has a HDR video mode, in which it combines two exposures into one, as depicted above. The 80D is able to shoot MPEG-4, and finally the 80D also has an all new timelapse video mode.

3. Loads of Focus points

The Canon 80D retains the revolutionary  Dual Pixel AF design first introduced in the 70D. With this, every single pixel is capable of phase detection autofocus in live view and movie mode. On top of that the 80D increases the number of focus points from 19 to 45.

80D Autofocus

All focus points are cross-type, which gives them good accuracy under most circumstances. Furthermore they are spread out nicely across the frame. Finally the Canon 80D also comes with an all new RGB metering sensor

4. Several handling upgrades

Next to the main improvements discussed above, there is more to say in the Canon 70D vs 80D debate. The Canon 80D has some more interesting new functions, mainly related to the handling and the ergonomics of the camera:

  • 100% viewfinder coverage instead of 98%. This helps to nail the framing of your shots just right
  • NFC to transfer photos to your smartphone
  • Two custom modes on the mode dial instead of one
  • A built-in timer for various timelapse functions
  • A headphone jack for audio recording
  • The super fancy anti-flicker technology as explained in our Canon 5D Mark IV article.

Canon 70d vs 80d: Worth the upgrade?

So what is our verdict? The new camera still looks very similar, and at a quick glance the differences between the 70D and the 80D are not that substantial. However, take a better look, and the upgrade becomes more pronounced. Especially the upgrades to the sensor put the Canon 80D one class above its predecessor. Canon was somewhat lacking when it came to dynamic range of their sensors, but with the 80D, Canon has closed the gap.

Canon 80D Back

The Canon 80D is currently available for $1.099. In our opinion this is great value for money. We prefer the ergonomics of this series of Canon DSLR camera’s over the entry level series, and give the Canon 80D our approval. What do you think of this camera?

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