Lots of people have been speculating on the 7D. Some have pointed to repeated failures of Canon Rumors to get it right as their reason for thinking a 7D replacement isn't coming. Others have suggested that Canon has given up in the sensor game. Still others claim that APS-C is dead. I'm here to tell you that you're all wrong. I've been involved in countless threads arguing many points about this and I figured instead I would make a single post of what I suspect is going to happen, when, why, and then we can just come back later and see if I'm right. I've done some serious research on Canon Rumors and from what I can tell, they have some darned good information and are pretty good at tagging just how reliable each post is. So first I'll say what I think on the 7D replacement. Then I'll spell out what I discovered in researching Canon rumors. Here we
So the 7D replacement will be announced somewhere between August 20 and September 10. The NDA will expire then. Canon can make their press release whenever they want but the NDA keeps people from talking about it before they make their release. So the NDA expiration date is the latest they will make their announcement.
An NDA is there to keep people from leaking information about the camera. Needless to say, if there is no camera, there's nothing to sign an NDA for. This has been reported as a fact and not a rumor. Also reported as fact was that Canon was sending 7D replacements to Brazil for the world cup and that they wanted to announce in August. Also mentioned was that the delay until August was for a reason.
So the camera exists. And it will be announced soon. Now here's what I think it will be:
10+ fps on a brand new sensor design at 24MP with much greater ISO and IQ bringing it up to almost full frame capability. THe same tech can be used in full frame to push them up higher as well. It will set a new bar in APS-C IQ.
The camera will be aimed squarely at sports and wildlife. The 7D is already mostly used that way and that's a unique market that they can expand on. This is an area where Canon shines already. And I'm sure they are thinking that more hobbyists are shooting sports and wildlife because those are things their friends with their phones, rebels, and nikons can't do nearly as well. It's a differentiator.
As such it will have an integrated grip. This allows a bigger battery which will allow certain L lenses to AF even faster just like the 1DX does now compared to the 5D3.
No WIFI. An all metal body like the 1D would create wifi problems. This may actually have been part of the delay.
GPS maybe GPS is great for wildlife so you can easily keep track of where you were but I don't know how that metal body will work with it.
dual card slots - definitely
new AF system - a variation of what will be on the next 1D and not the current 1D or 5D system. Possibly live Servo phase detection using Dual pixel CMOS to keep tracking while the shutter is open during continuous shooting.
Expect some new video stuff like high speed video for slow motion video. Maybe 300 or 600fps video. Also the ability to pull an image from a video on-camera.
Metal body and Water sealing like the 1D
No mode dial...buttons instead like the 1D. Helps with the water sealing.
radio wireless control of flash
pop up flash still....
Very large screen - possibly with touch and dual pixel CMOS
More custom setting profiles.
Phase detection AF down to -2EV
No guarantee it will be called the 7D mkII
AVAILABILITY: Late September or early October....just in time for the Xmas shopping season!
I've taken a lot of this from the more persistent things listed on CR that were CR2. Until just recently they have not issued a single CR3 regarding the 7D replacement. Most of the CR2 stuff was very sensible, consistent, and other than a couple delays from the first half of 2014 to the second half, there hasn't been anything that's turned up as clearly wrong. But sometimes they miss things. I think Canon does try hard to hide what they are doing. They prefer to surprise us. Here's what I've turned up from CR regarding the 1DX, 5DIII, and 7DII:
On the 1DX: on October 10, 2011, Canon Rumors only had this to go on: "Next EOS not a 1Ds4 or 5D3…. could be a 1D Mark 5? [CR2]"...... On October 17 Canon ran a press release announcing the 1DX. It detailed all the specs and said it would be available in March 2012. Here, Canon made a very early announcement before a lot of leaking could get out. I didn't spend a lot of time on the 1DX because I'm more curious about the 7D....
On the 5DmkIII,
Early on there were specs all over the place, early talk of a Feb 7 announcement, mention of Eye Control AF, GPS, and other such things. Nothing solid at all. From Feb 1-20 there was a lot of chatter but it was speculation, random specs, talk of a "5DX", etc coming from many different directions. Most of it CR1.
On Feb 22, CR posted a short list of some possible specs along with an announcement date of March 2 as [CR3]
On Feb 26, mkII price drops were announced to be coming on March 4. But then on Feb 28, a firmware update was released for the mkII leading many to believe the mkII wasn't as close to reality as they had hoped.
On March 1, Canon Rumors posted a full spec list with a question mark behind it. It was accurate.
On March 2, Canon issued the press release on the mkIII. First orders were around March 22. Then a product advisory in April followed shortly thereafter with a firmware update.
So CR seemed to have nailed it when they actually put a CR3 on it.
Now on to the 7D.....
Way back in 2012 there was no CR3s issued on the 7DII that I could find. A lot of CR1s. In June 2012 it was mentioned that there might be an APS-H 7Dor there might not but they didn't go further. It was just in a list of reported rumors. Not even a CR1.
In August 2012 there was a short spec list as a CR1 with this note: "I am not convinced such a camera is on the horizon. We’ve heard for a while that the 70D would move up a level and the 7D would be left alone. With the recent major firmware update for the 7D, replacing the camera directly this soon seems like a stretch."
In september this was listed:
A new sensor line will appear in 2013 that will be seen across the entire APS-C lineup. Expect to see the first announcements in the first half of 2013.
The delays in developing the sensor was apparently a big reason for the big firmware update for the 7D. It’s also suggested that there may not be a 7D/60D amalgamation in the future. The 7D Mark II will not be an APS-H camera as some have wished/rumored.
Note that other than the timing, this all seems to be accurate as far as we know. Trouble with this sensor may have continued until more recently.
In october a CR1 was posted about a possible 7d replacement announcement in early 2013.
In november the first round of specs were mentioned and were CR1. It included "new ergonomic body" (I'm thinking integrated grip...see why later) New battery (would be good for an integrated grip). 24.2MP sensor. 10fps Expected announcement in early 2013.
Later that month some talk that the 7D2 was going to be more aimed squarely at sports and wildlife photogs. (more on that later too)
Things were quiet till february 2013 when a new spec list came out - the first CR2 regarding the 7DII. In the list are again 24MP sensor, 10fps, dual card slots, dual processors, 61point AF, GPS, WIFI, and "ISO performance close to the 5D3" which again says a breakthrough sensor technology. But such technology can have delays while being developed of course. It also said it would be a "baby 1DX" which brings to mind an integrated grip.
In March more talk about the integrated grip. An integrated grip allows for a bigger battery which can make select large L lenses AF faster. Something a sports/wildlife camera should have.
Later that month a camera was speccd that "might" be the 7DII but only a 21MP sensor. Also a CR1.
In May they stated that a 7DII would be a 2014 camera as a CR2.
In July, more mention of a possible new 24MP sensor and a 2014 availability.
In August they reported being told that specs aren't finalized yet but it would have dual pixel AF and GPS and a 2014 availability.
Later that month, a spec list including a 20MP sensor
In October a CR1 was posted stating Q2 of 2014 for an announcement but the sensor would not be the 20MP just mentioned.
Later that month another CR1 spec list which said the sensor wasn't decided but would either be 24MP or 20MP but not the same as the 70D sensor. Similar specs otherwise to what had shown before but "innovative video features" and major ISO improvement were mentioned yet again.
In November, a CR2 stating "first half of 2014" along with it being a "PRO APS-C", (not prosumer or semi-pro), new sensor, new AF system that will be similar to the next 1D body.
In december a CR1 stating no 7D replacement was coming. They doubted it.
Later that month a "CR3 level source" was reported to have said that a 7D replacement is coming in 2014 but with no timeframe. It was marked CR2.
January a CR1 was issued stating that a 7DII might be announce at CP+. Later that month, Q2 is mentioned. Also a CR1.
Feb - a new CR1 also stating Q2 and mentioning cutting edge video, and setting a new standard for APS-C sensors.
March, another CR1 about a brand new sensor under 25MP, sual card slots, the "most features of any Canon DSLR ever"
May - A report that preproduction models WILL be in Brazil at the world cup and that they hope to announce it in August to show off in Photokina in September.
June - reports of distributors entering "end of life" for Canon 7D in their systems
Later that month, more reports of this and another mention of an August announcement.
And another mentioning a top plate similar to the 1DX instead of a mode dial.
And another about a 1.15 viewfinder coverage
And another with a supposed user who mentioned higher MP, vastly improved AF, greatly improved ISO and noise, potentially different sensor than expected, close to pro but not to compete with 1DX, release in fall, and that Canon was holding back the announcement for a reason.
And still in June, a CR2 - to expect all new sensor tech to be used in all forthcoming DSLRs. And it's not Foveon.
July -The first CR3 on the 7DII. It says the NDA/embargo on the 7DII will expire in September.
Another July post firming up the estimated date of that NDA release.
July 12, Canon drops price of 7D
July 26, 7D discontinued at Amazon