With no real direct competitors, the Nikon D300 has dominated the mid-range digital SLR market for years, and its recently released successor, the Nikon D300s, looked poised to inherit its older sibling's crown. That is, until the Canon EOS 7D was announced yesterday. Priced at $1,699 ($100 less than the D300s), the 7D will give the D300s a run for its money when it's released later this month.
Rather than come out with a less expensive full-frame dSLR as Sony did with its Alpha DSLR-A850 a few days ago (say, a 5D Mark II junior), Canon decided to go for a high-end APS-C camera (a full $300 less than the A850), which slips neatly into the EOS line between the 5D Mark II and the 50D -- and is pitted directly against the D300s. So what do you get by spending $100 less? For starters, the 7D sports an 18-megapixel CMOS sensor (vs. the D300s' 12.3-megapixel sensor) and it records 1,920x1,080 HD video at a full 30 fps, compared to the D300s' 720p video at only 24 fps.
For a further specs comparison between the 7D and the D300s (plus the Pentax K-7, a lower-priced APS-C camera that also shoots HD video):
|Canon EOS 7D||Nikon D300s||Pentax K-7|
|Price||$1,699 (body only), ships end of September||$1,799.95 (body only)||$1,299.95 (body only)|
|Sensor||18 megapixels, 22.3x14.9mm CMOS||12.3 megapixels, 23.6x15.8mm CMOS||14.6 megapixels, 23.4x15.6mm CMOS|
|Continuous Shooting Speed||8 fps||7 fps||5.2 fps|
|LCD||3-inch, 920,000 pixels (fixed)||3-inch, 920,000 pixels (fixed)||3-inch, 921,000 pixels (fixed)|
|Autofocus||19-point (all cross-type)||51-point (15 cross-type)||11-point (9 cross-type)|
|Sensitivity||ISO 100-12800||ISO 100-6400||ISO 100-6400|
|Storage Media||Compact Flash Type I/II||Compact Flash Type I/II, SD, SDHC||SD, SDHC|
|Movie Mode||1920x1080 (30 fps)/1280x720 (60 fps)/640x480 (60 fps)||1280x720 (24 fps)/640x424 (24 fps)/320x216 (24 fps)||1536x1024 (30 fps)/1280x720 (30 fps)/640x416 (30 fps)|
|Dimensions||5.8x4.4x2.9 inches||5.8x4.5x2.9 inches||5.1x3.8x2.9 inches|
|Weight (body)||28.9 oz||30 oz||22.9 oz|