The Canon 7D was launched shortly after the 5D Mark II and it’s been an important player in the indie filmmaking scene for as long as it’s been out. These cameras are the cameras of choice for many of the students enrolled in our online filmmaking program.
Many consider the 7D the 5D’s little brother. However, these two cameras are quite different and therefore on most film sets these two cameras are used for entirely different reasons.
The Canon 5D has a full frame sensor that measures 36 x 24 mm. The sensor size on the 7D on the other hand is 22.3 x 14.9 mm. This is a roughly sixty percent difference in sensor size. This makes the Canon 5D Mark II superior for low light shooting. However, this isn’t to downplay the sensor size of the 7D, which is still capable of capturing great looking footage in low light.
One of the biggest features that 5D owners admire about the 7D is its ability to shoot slow motion footage. The 7D can shoot 60fps which means you can slow the footage down in post-production without any noticeable motion blur. However, since the Canon 5D Mark II can’t shoot at fast frame rates you won’t be able to slow the footage down without noticeable motion blur.
That is why on many film sets that require slow motion work the 7D will be the primary camera on set. Or if the filmmakers plan on shooting in low light they might decide to have both cameras on set using the 5D for the low light shots and the 7D for the slow motion work.
Take a look at the following Wiz Khalifa music video for his song entitled “Black and Yellow”. This music video was shot on both the Canon 5D and 7D. You should be able to see which shots were shot with the 7D (slow motion shots) and which shots were shot with the 5d (regular speed shots). As you’ll be able to see, there is no noticeable difference in quality between these shots. Both the 7D and 5D Mark II shoot very high-resolution footage.
Other technical specs of the video:
Canon 5D & 7D
(10-20mm f3.5, 35mm f2, 50mm f1.8, 85mm f1.8, 70-200mm f2.8)
Edited in Final Cut Pro & Graded in Magic Bullet