Given the number of threads, I though I'd add one... not asking you to spend my money for me, but instead how I decided.
Current situation: T2i with 18-55 and 55-250 kit lenses 10 months ago, Canon 430EXII 9 months ago, 6 months ago got the 50mm ƒ1.4, four months ago got the Tokina 100mm macro. About 3500 shutter actuations so far. I often walk around with my camera around Toronto, always with me when I go motorcycling to new places (every year go on a 4,000km+ trip) and to special events. I'm happy with my two prime lenses, almost never use the kit lenses anymore. I've become a 50mm advocate. The macro lens is my fancy schmancy gizmo.
In two weeks I'll come into a bit of money and decided to spend it on a body upgrade.
Disclaimer - I understand that:
- A body upgrade will not make me a better photographer
- The more expensive the toy, the more expensive the accessories
- The more expensive the toy, the more expensive the repairs
- The more expensive the toy, the more expensive the replacement
I looked at the specs of the 60D, but if I'm going to spend some money, I'd rather have a notable improvement rather than a small incremental one.
Why the upgrade:
1. Ergonomics. This is a big one for me. I'm 6'5" and have large hands. The T2i feels like a toy and I've trouble getting a good grip on it, especially when doing handheld macro work (which I really enjoy doing). This is a big factor for me. I'm willing to carry the extra weight (T2i 530g, 7D 820g, 5DII 907g) for this. When I hold the 7D and 5DII in stores, I don't want to let go.
2. ISO performance. I love ambient light photography and the flash is only for specific indoor use, portrait work. My T2i is capped at 1600 as anything more would require too much post processing (most of the time) for me to be happy. I keep wishing for better ISO performance. Just. One. More. Increment...
3. Ruggedness. When motorcycling (I've a little tank bag setup so it's always within reach and dampened from vibrations) or walking around town, I always have a plastic bag with me, just in case it rains. However I always fear that droplets of water will ruin my T2i. I'm probably being overly cautious, but this will give me peace of mind. Also, next year I plan on going further than I ever have on the motorcycle, somewhere with no one for 100km+ for days on end, and want peace of mind. Don't get me wrong, the T2i has proved faithful, but it's my first DSLR and I'm used to old-school 35mm film SLRs and I miss their solid build.
4. Prestige. I've recently started a media freelancing business that has a strong photography component. At one point I visited a client to take product pictures. They were vocally disappointed that I "only" had a Rebel-series body. This is nothing but marketing, but something I feel is important (you may feel otherwise, but this is my post and I'll cry if I want to) and factored into my decision.
7D Pros (to me):
- Lightning-fast processing including 8FPS burst mode.
- ASP-C sensor is a benefit for macro work (1.6x FTW!)
- Has an electronic level display (I still sometimes don't frame the picture precisely, and this is something I've wished the T2i had)
- Notable financial upgrade to a camera with the same sensor
- 99% of the time I use centre-point AF only and reframe the picture, the 7D's fancy AF system would be lost on me
- Better ISO performance
- Full frame for slightly (I said slightly) better IQ
- FF is a benefit to landscape/urban photography
- More expensive
- Older technology and its replacement(s?) (late 2012? 2013?) is likely to shatter the current model and lead to renewed hardware envy
So, after looking at it, the only thing the 7D really offers me is the 1.6x magnification for macro work. I can always crop the image in post processing. Everything else points to the 5D. I won't miss the kit EF-S lenses, though the next item on my list will be a wide angle lens in the future.
Do I need the upgrade? No. But I am in a position where I can treat myself and resolve some of the concerns that have made me frown with the T2i (many of them personal and not technical). Put it this way. It's a 5DII or a new couch. I'm trying to spend less time on the couch. Two birds. One stone.
When I've confirmed that my bonus is what I hope it will be, the T2i and kit lenses will be on sale to help with the change and I'll plunge further into photography.