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Canon announces EOS 60D with vari-angle rear LCD  
Wednesday, August 25, 2010 | by Rob Galbraith
Canon has unveiled the EOS 60D. The successor to the EOS 50D fits in between the EOS T2i/550D and EOS 7D in Canon's lineup and gets many of its still and video features from these models. It has a 17.92 million image pixel CMOS sensor, shoots stills at up to 5.3fps, sports 63-zone metering and 9-point AF systems, can control and trigger remote Speedlites with its built-in flash and captures 1080p video at up to 30fps. It's also the first Canon digital SLR to incorporate a tilt-and-twist rear LCD.

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Twist: Views of the Canon EOS 60D. Click photos to enlarge (Photos courtesy Canon)

Canon EOS 60D feature summary
  • The 60D's body is similar to but smaller overall than the 50D, incorporates a multicontroller within the Quick Control Dial, a locking top mode dial as well as a vari-angle rear LCD.

  • It produces 17.92 million pixel photos from a self-cleaning CMOS sensor that is the same as that found in the T2i/550D. The focal length cropping factor is 1.6x, relative to a full frame camera. The 60D takes both EF and EF-S lenses.

  • It shoots continuously at up to 5.3fps for a Canon-specified 58 Large/Fine JPEG, 16 RAW or 7 RAW+JPEG frames. The 60D accepts SD, SDHC or SDXC memory cards and includes specific support for Eye-Fi's wireless/memory combo cards.

  • The sensitivity range is ISO 100-6400 in 1/3 step increments, plus H (ISO 12,800).

  • The 9-point AF system in the 60D is the same as the 50D and features all cross-type points. If an f/2.8 or faster lens is used, the centre AF point detects focus with greater precision than with slower aperture lenses.

  • Viewfinder coverage is 96%, up from the 50D's 95%, though the viewfinder optics are otherwise the same and the 60D is compatible with the same trio of accessory focusing screens as the earlier model.

  • Ambient and TTL flash metering is handled by the same 63-zone, dual colour layer meter of the 7D and T2i/550D. Exposure calculations incorporate data from the metering sensor as well as all 9 AF points.

  • The built-in flash can act as a wireless TTL controller for up to two groups of remote Speedlites.

  • The 60D's exposure compensation range is 5 stops.

  • The camera includes a single axis (left/right) level, accessible both in the viewfinder (it uses the exposure level scale) or on the rear LCD (in an interface reminiscent of the 7D).

  • File format options include JPEG (three resolutions and two compression levels) and RAW (full resolution, plus M and S reduced resolutions).

  • The 60D offers up to 1920 x 1080 pixel (1080p) video capture at 30fps with the option of connecting an external stereo mic (via a 3.5mm miniphone jack) plus both manual and automatic exposure modes. It creates H.264-encoded movie files with a .mov extension and has a 4GB clip length limit. The resolution and frame rate options are:

    • 1080p: 1920 x 1080 pixels at 30fps (actually 29.97fps)
    • 1080p: 1920 x 1080 pixels at 25fps
    • 1080p: 1920 x 1080 pixels at 24fps (actually 23.976fps)
    • 720p: 1280 x 720 pixels at 60fps (actually 59.94fps)
    • 720p: 1280 x 720 pixels at 50fps
    • SD: 640 x 480 pixels at 60fps (actually 59.94fps)
    • SD: 640 x 480 pixels at 50fps
Audio gain can be set automatically or manually; for the latter the menu is similar to the EOS 5D Mark II and can be adjusted in 64 levels. There is also an electronic wind noise reduction filter. Unlike Nikon's recently-announced D3100, the 60D cannot autofocus continuously while a movie is being recorded.
  • The rear LCD is a three inch (diagonal), 3:2 ratio, 1.04 million dot TFT. In a first for a Canon digital SLR, the rear LCD is hinged on the left side and can be tilted, twisted, turned around and positioned facing inwards or outwards from the camera body.

  • The 60D offers more comprehensive in-camera image processing than any previous Canon digital SLR, including RAW to JPEG conversion with control over the Picture Style, WB, colour space and other parameters. Four different creative filter options are also included: soft focus, grainy black and white, toy camera and miniature. Image resizing is also possible, down to as small as 720 x 480, plus you can choose from three alternate aspect ratios - square, 16:9 and 4:3 - in addition to the sensor's native 3:2.

  • Battery power comes from the Lithium Ion Battery Pack LP-E6, the same as the 5D Mark II and 7D.

  • Optional accessories include the new Battery Grip BG-E9. The 60D will not work with the WFT-E3/E3A transmitter for the 50D and no dedicated transmitter for the 60D is planned, says Westfall.
A Canon-prepared video highlighting the camera's features is below. Photos and video shot with the 60D are here. The Canon Digital Learning Center site has information on the new model's in-camera processing, video features and electronic level.

Quick Tour: Canon EOS 60D walkthrough video (Video courtesy Canon Europe)

Price and availability

The Canon EOS 60D has an expected street price of US$1099 in the U.S. and is to ship towards the end of September. Battery Grip BG-E9 is to ship at about the same time for US$270.
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