Canon EOS 7D

As a guy who earns some money shooting portraits and covering events for the local paper, I was looking for a DSLR that combined the high-performance features and body build of a real pro model in a more compact, easier-to-handle form factor. While checking out cameras at a big city camera store I was immediately drawn to the Canon EOS 7D. It had the brightest, clearest 100% viewfinder of any APS-C format camera I’d ever looked through, it felt really solid, like the larger, heavier pro models, and the way it fit my hands I knew immediately it was an all-day shooter. In perusing the specs I confirmed its professional credentials—it has a weatherproof magnesium-alloy body, a 150,000-cycle shutter, a hi-res 18MP sensor, and a blistering 8 frames-per-sec burst rate that’s great for shooting sports and events. What clinched it for me is the Canon EOS 7D’s awesome video capability-capturing spot news clips in full HD at 1080p at 50/60p couldn’t be easier—just set the control to “movie” and press the button!

In shooting with my Canon EOS 7D I’ve discovered many more things to love. It delivers superb ultra-low-noise imaging even at ISO 6400, its big 3-inch, 920k-dot LCD lets me assess the finest details, its 19-zone AF system provides an incredible range of autofocus modes, and its built-in flash triggers my Canon Speedlite 580 EX II strobes without extra accessories. For general shooting I rely on the Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.6-5.6 IS as my standard zoom—a great all-around lens that delivers superb image quality. My all-time favorite is the remarkable Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM super telephoto zoom that covers an equivalent range of 112mm to 320mm on the 7D and is the sharpest telephoto I’ve ever used. At wide apertures it captures beautiful pictorial effects, it’s fantastic for shooting sports and action, where its enhanced image stabilization (IS) is a real plus, and it can focus to 1/5 life-size for capturing awesome close-ups. It doesn’t get any better than this quintessential Canon combo.