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7DII and landscape photography


I'm thinking of updating to the 7DII. In the course of on line research I've seen it mentioned that this camera excells at most everythinmg except landscapes. Anyone out there have this experience?? Thanks for any input...




The comparsion or not, old 7D has no good noise pattern at low ISO. Especially in a blue sky. The pattern is visible. New 7DII has not this noise pattern. Neither do 40D.

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@tinwhistle wrote:

I hate to confess this, especially since I've been "taking pictures" for about 60 years and even been paid to take some, but I have no idea of what the following statements mean: dual ISO, dynamic range, moire, aliasing.


tinwhistle    aka   Chris

Dual ISO isn't really a universally understood term even among hard-core photographers.  It was a trick created by the authors of Magic Lantern who used it in an attempt to reduce the amount of digital "noise" in an image shot at high ISO.


Dynamic range:  If you meter a subject and it turns out you realize you can get a good exposure of this subject at (I'll make up something) ISO 100, f/8, and 1/400th second exposure, it turns out that if your subject will still probably be fine even if over-exposed or under-exposed by just 1 stop.  Most cameras would have no problems with up to 3 stops in either driection (even a camera that isn't thought of as being very good).    When you shoot some types of scenes (landscapes are noted for this) you can meter the brightest object in your scene (say... some puffy white clouds in the sky) and also the darkest element in your scene (the tree-trunks in the forest shadows at the end of a meadow).  If you expose for the puffy cloud, the tree-trunks are just black.  If you expose for the tree-trunks in shadow the sky is blown out.     So you try to expose for the middle and HOPE that your camera sensor has enough "dynamic range" that neither the puffy clouds nor the shadowy areas are clipped or blown out.  Some camera sensors do better at this than others.    That's the idea behind "dynamic range" -- how far can you go (under or over) your intended exposure without losing details that get clipped or blown out.


Moiré:  If you lay a one piece of screen on top of another piece of screen and then slightly rotate the top piece (so that the rows and columns of wires are not parallel) you'll get an interesting pattern.  That pattern is called "moiré".  See:é_pattern


This wasn't a problem with film because the film isn't made up of light-sensitive material all in neat little rows and columns.  It was a chemical coating in which each molecure was more or less randomly positioned.    But since digital cameras DO use light-sensitive photo-sites which are neatly aligned in rows and columns, you can get a moiré pattern if your subject has a pattern which is almost-but-not-quite, parallel to the sensor rows and columns.


To combat this problem, the camera employs a "low pass filter".  The filter very slightly softens the sharpness of the image and this combats the moiré pattern.  This slight softening is sometimes referred to as anti-aliasing.  


Consider that the reason you do NOT see moiré pattern with film is because the surface coating on film is composed of molecures of light-sensitive material which are randomly distributed and not in neat rows and columns... and you only see the pattern when one pattern of rows and columns is placed on another pattern of rows and columns -- but without perfect alignment.   Therefore, if we slightly degrade the perfection of our rows and columns in just one of the layers, we wouldn't see the moiré pattern.  This is basically what the low-pass filter is doing.


Aliasing is the notion of getting a jagged edge when, in fact, you know the subject you photographed has a straight edge.  This effect is particularly noticeable at low resolution.  In images it is also known as "spatial aliasing".  See:


The 5Ds r (specifically with the "r" suffix) removes the low-pass (anti-aliasing) filter which allows for a sharper final image... but at the risk that should you photograph something with a neat row/column pattern (anything with parallel or vertical lines close together) you can get the moiré pattern.    Nature and lanscape photographers are less likely to encounter this.  Fasion photographers, on the other hand, probably encounter this problem in fabrics fairly often.  Canon makes the camera both with and without the filter and the photographer can make their own (hopefully informed) decision as to which they prefer.


Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

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I haven't seen any reviews that say its not suitable for landscape photography. However, given its parameters - crop sensor, high frame rate and rapid autofocus system - its target market is not landscape photographers. There are better choices if that is your primary use.

John Hoffman
Conway, NH

1D X Mark III, Many lenses, Pixma PRO-100, Pixma TR8620a, LR Classic

It's not that the 7D2 isn't a good landscape camera; it obviously is. It's just that the notable features that have been incorporated into the 7D2 that tend to set it apart from competing models are mainly oriented toward action and event photography. It's a fine all-around camera; but if you're a landscape specialist, you may prefer something different: a high-resolution full-frame camera, for instance.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA


Utter nonsense. Smiley Frustrated  The 7D and the 7D Mk II can shoot landscapes.  I am convinced the folks that make such claims never actually do what they claim!  If the 7D Mk II, which I don't have either, can't shoot landscapes than neither can the 5Ds.  The pixel pitch is nearly identical.  Close enough to not be a factor.  This means the sensors are the same except for physical size.  And the 5Ds is claimed to be the greatest 'landscape' camera made!


The choice of lens will be a greater factor than the camera.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!


Maybe will bring some light over the question. Old 7D has a low ISO noise pattern.

POTN, useless comparison in this case.


"The choice of lens will be a greater factor than the camera."

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

The comparsion or not, old 7D has no good noise pattern at low ISO. Especially in a blue sky. The pattern is visible. New 7DII has not this noise pattern. Neither do 40D.

Hey guy's, lot of good thoughts. Thats why I posed the question, who knows what was going on when a post comes up like that. Landscapes are only a small part of my photography. I do a lot of corporate work, agriculture, construction, etc., and the landscape, sports, portrait, wildlife, and so on are more or less leisure (fun) past times. My 70D has been a real trooper, no complaints, but I like the idea of the heavier construction of the Mark II. Job sites and Farms are hard on photography equipment!!

Think I'll invest in the 7DII......


tinwhistle  aka  Chris  

"Think I'll invest in the 7DII......"


Good choice.  Smiley Very Happy  But I still don't agree with Peter.  The lens you choose will be more of a factor than either the 7D or the 7D Mk II.  In the POTN comparison there are too many differences to make any meaningfull conclusion.  Comparions need to be like for like.  Same, same.  But whatever................

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!




The 7D has a noise pattern visible already at ISO 100. Tonmapping it in Photomatix (or sometimes in other rawconverters) it will be possible to see this pattern. Shooting in ISO 160 (ISO 200 and post underexposed in camera for less noise) won't help really much. You can read more about the 7D and it's infameous noise pattern here. Never got it from my 400D, 40D, 5D, 5DII, 6D. This is why I don´ t recommend 7D for landscape photography. On the other hand, my 7D don't has banding at high ISO. My 400D, 40D, 5D, 5DII had that.


My link to POTN was just an example how much similar a crop camera and a full frame camera may look like.

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