Our friend and colleague, professional videographer Johnnie Behiri from the website cinema5d, recently had a chance to play with a pre production unit of the upcoming Canon EOS 70D (currently in pre-order on B&H for $1200). Although it was very important for him to clarify that the camera is indeed not a production unit and that the firmware might still be tweaked before the camera will actually be getting to the stores (interestingly the Canon representative was not sure on this point) his results are still very interesting and even (possibly) somewhat surprising.
Regarding the camera innovative AF system, Behiri seems to be impressed – as you can see with the video above it look like it is working very well. For Behiri however the main drawback of using the touch screen on the camera for focusing on the fly is that it is impossible to do this using the Zacuto VF which is essential for his type of shooting outdoors. for this video Behiri just turned the touch screen off and used the back wheel to control the focus (you can also use an external monitor – however the main screen will go dark the minute you do that).
The second video Behiri shot using the EOS 70D was intended to check the general image quality in video. Here Behiri was not very pleased – according to him the image seems to be on the soft side, noisy with moire and aliasing are everywhere. However again – keep in mind that the firmware might improve with the production camera and maybe even further on down the line.
Image quality test video with pre production EOS 70D