Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Detailed Comparison

If you’re here checking out this Sony a7R vs Canon 70D comparison article, you’re most probably trying to make a choice between these two cameras. Let’s start out by saying that the Sony a7R was introduced into the market as a pro camera while the Canon 70D was introduced as a semi-pro.

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We want you to bear that in mind as you go through the side by side features comparison you’ll get to see soon enough. Who knows? That distinction might actually have a bearing on the features and the quality of said features each camera bears.

If what you’ve come here for is to make as quick a decision as possible, you’ll want to check out the comparison overview and comparison table below. They both contain concise information that you won’t have any troubles running through.

However, we do recommend that you read through the entire article for a more rounded information base. We also recommend that you check out some of our other comparison articles involving these cameras like the Sony a7R vs Canon 5D Mark III and the Sony a7S vs Canon 70D.

Sony a7R vs Canon 70D – Comparison Overview

Here is a quick rundown of the basic ideas of this camera:

Overall Rating Of The Sony a7R vs Canon 70D

We think the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D are almost (if not) evenly matched. They both have pretty interesting features that they kinda share. Yet they have some features that make them stand out from the other.

If we had to, we would say the Sony a7R is the better camera for photos because of its sensor resolution while the Canon 70D is the better camera for personal projects because of its full-flex screen. Let’s look at the features.

Rating Of The Features Of The Sony a7R vs Canon 70D

These two cameras share a lot of features in common. From the inbuilt wireless connection and weather sealing to the microphone port and flash shoe, there are no differences with these features.

Furthermore, there are a number of other features that one camera does better than the other. For the Sony a7R you have the 36 megapixel sensor as against the Canon 70D’s 20 megapixels and its 25600 maximum ISO as against the Canon 70D’s 12800.

On the part of the Canon 70D, there is the 920 shot per charge battery life as against the Sony a7R’s 340 shots and its 7 frame per second continuous shooting as against the Sony a7R’s 4 frames per second.

Also, each camera has a few features that you won’t find on the other camera. For the Sony a7R you have the Near Field Communication connection and a headphone port. On the other hand, the Canon 70D has a top level LCD screen and an inbuilt flash.

Finally, one not very impressive thing that both cameras agree with is the absence of an in body image stabilization feature.

Price Value Ratio – Sony a7R vs Canon 70D

Which is more expensive: Sony a7R vs Canon 70D?

The Canon 70D is more expensive than the Sony a7R although both cameras are relatively affordable. The Canon 70D also has an edge in terms of the features offered to users by both cameras.

About The Brands

Sony

The Sony brand is the leading producer of mirrorless camera and it usually gets it right with its sensor quality. So, it is kinda common to find Sony cameras with an exceptional sensor quality. However, it is also not uncommon to find Sony cameras with a not impressive battery life.

Canon

The Canon brand happens to be one of the leading producers of cameras (ahead of Sony in general). It has also been in the business of producing cameras for quite some time and so has a decent collection of lenses and other accessories.

Canon also almost always gets it right with is color reproduction and user friendly menu. Its camera bodies could be a bit expensive, though.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Comparison Table

 

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

Weight 1.0 pound 1.7 pounds
Dimensions 5 by 3.7 by 1.9 inches 5.5 by 4.1 by 3.1 inches
Battery Life 340 shots per charge 920 shots per charge
Continuous Shooting 4 frames per second 7 frames per second
Headphone Port Yes No
Built-In Flash No Yes
Articulating Screen Tilting screen Full-Flex Screen
Max Resolution 36 megapixels 20 megapixels
Viewfinder Electronic Optical
Near Field Communication Yes No
Expected Shutter Life Span 250000 cycles 150000 cycles
ISO 100 to 25600 and can be expanded to 50 to 51200 100 to 12800 and can be expanded to 25600
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Sony a7R vs Canon 70D – Circumstances They Are Best Suited For

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

Because of how high this camera’s ISO can go (not exactly revolutionary but higher than the Canon 70D), this camera will perform better in low light. Into the kind of photography that requires speed (wildlife, sports, and celebrities)? Consider getting this one as it has the better continuous shooting rate.
Also, the Sony a7R is significantly lighter than the Canon 70D. So, this one will make an easier travel buddy. It is also the easier camera to conceal. On the other hand, you’ll be able to use this camera for longer periods at a time because its battery life is more than double that of the Sony a7R.
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Common Features of the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D

The following features are common to both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D:

1. Viewfinder

2. Auto Exposure Bracketing

4. Sensor Resolution

5. Wireless Connection

6. Articulating Screen

7. Weather Sealing

8. Flash Shoe

9. Video Resolution

10. RAW Support

11. Face Detection

1. Viewfinder

Which has a viewfinder: Sony a7R or Canon 70D?

An important feature that you won’t find in some mirrorless cameras is the viewfinder. Not to worry, those mirrorless cameras that have no viewfinder usually have a port for one. And if it doesn’t then you could just use the LCD screen.

The reason we prefer having an actual viewfinder is that you can use it in whatever kind of lighting situation. However, what’s on an LCD screen would be difficult to view if the light is too bright, like when you’re outside.

Now, let’s backtrack a little and understand the function of a viewfinder. A viewfinder is what you use in framing your subject. So, the image you see when you look through the viewfinder gives you an idea of what the end result will look like; the subject’s position, exposure and all that stuff.

That said, there are basically two kinds of screens: the optical kind (which the Canon 70D) has and the electronic viewfinder (which the Sony a7R has). And they both work slightly differently.

Looking through an optical viewfinder is kinda like looking directly at the subject or looking through a mirror. Now because there are no mechanics to how the optical viewfinder works, it can run without using battery power and has a pretty impressive response time.

On the other hand, the electronic viewfinder is actually a miniature LCD. So the images you’ll see on this viewfinder are actually processed or, better put, digital. This is actually a better representation of what your end result will look like seeing as photos are digital images.

Finally, while both kinds of viewfinder have their strengths and weaknesses, we always consider any viewfinder a better idea than no viewfinder.

2. Auto Exposure Bracketing

There are three features that determine the exposure of a photo: the ISO, the shutter speed and the aperture. That is, different combinations of these three features will give you different exposures.

Now what is exposure? This is basically about how much light a photo taken has. One tricky thing about exposure is that because you won’t always have the same lighting conditions, you cannot use the exact same exposure for all your photos.

So, you’ll have to determine what exposure will be appropriate for a particular shooting and then go about creating it by lining the ISO, the shutter speed and aperture.

However, there could be times when determining the right exposure could be a tricky thing. This is where the Auto Exposure Bracketing comes in.

If your camera has this, like both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D do, switching on this mode allows it automatically shoot a subject in a number of different exposures, usually more than 2. This way, you can choose whichever exposure you think works for you.

3. Sensor Resolution

Both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D have a pretty impressive sensor resolution. And two very important reasons why you want a camera with an impressive sensor resolution are for the cropping room and the print size.

Let’s take cropping first. When you crop a photo, you reduce the quality (resolution) of that photo. However, if your camera has a high sensor resolution, what cropping will take away from your photo won’t affect it so much because there’s still significant resolution left, basically.

Same goes for printing. The larger you want to go, the more resolution you need. That is, unless you don’t mind having really terrible photos and we are sure everybody minds that.

We must admit that the Sony a7R’s 36 megapixels is more impressive than the Canon 70D’s sensor resolution. However, 20 megapixels is not terrible, honestly.

4. Wireless Connection

Both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D have an inbuilt wireless connection and we are here for it. In this age of the internet, it is certainly strange to find a device that doesn’t have a means of getting access to the internet.

So, with the inbuilt wireless connection feature, one can access the internet and download interesting apps off there. In addition, this connection could be a means via which you send your photos and videos to an off-camera location without cumbersome wires.

Still on the issue of connectivity, we have to mention that both cameras can be controlled using a smartphone. What you want to do is download the camera app on your phone and then via that app, connect the camera to the phone.

Once that is done, you can control your camera from your smartphone. You only have to be close enough that the connection remains to do controlling.

5. Articulating Screen

This is one of those features that you might not know you need until you actually use it. An articulating screen is that kind of screen that can be swiveled, moved or angled without moving the camera body.

The idea of this kind of screen is for you to be able to take shots from some really interesting angles. That said, there are basically two kinds of articulating screens. There is the tilting screen that can be moved upward and then back down. And there is the full-flex which can basically be rotated.

The Sony a7R has a tilting screen while the Canon 70D has a full-flex screen. As a result, the Canon 70D can actually be used to record personal videos and shoot personal photos.

However, whatever the kind of articulating screen, we always like the flexibility that this kind of screen affords.

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6. Weather Sealing

When a camera is said to be weather sealed, there are different things that could mean and you’d be careful to find out. A weather sealed camera could be dust and water resistant or dust and waterproof.

That said, both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D are dust and water resistant and not proof. The difference being in how much protection the cameras have against the elements and, by implication, how much of an onslaught they can survive.

What we are saying is this: neither of the two cameras is built to survive in extreme wet and dust situations like a heavy downpour, a sand storm, in your pool or out in a desert. However, if there are little dust and water accidents here and there, cleaning them up would do the trick.

7. Flash Shoe

Light is absolutely very important for whatever photo you want to take. The thing is, even if you want to have that dark effect by shooting in the dark, you need a bit of light for your sensor to be able to see.

This is why a lot of cameras come built with a flash. The flash is supposed to be your quick light fix; you put on the flash and as you shoot, there is an immediate burst of light and lights up your subject.

However, the inbuilt flash isn’t always the best source of light as regards quality and even reach. This is why some have decided to forgo the inbuilt flash and just put a flash port (some cameras have both).

With this flash shoe, you can now get whatever external flash suits your need. And just so we’re clear, both cameras have a flash port.

8. Video Resolution

Both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D have a 1920 by 1080 video resolution. It’s not 4K video recording but it is actually pretty impressive. Plus, if you’re using a camera to record videos, you’ll probably not miss the 4K recording.

9. RAW Support

You’ll want to get a camera that can shoot in RAW and we’ll tell you why. Every digital camera shoots in jpeg and this format is actually alright. The problem with jpeg is that it compresses photos and when those photos are compressed, they lose some of their quality.

However, why we say you’ll like the RAW format is because it allows photos retain their original. So, all things being equal, RAW photos are better quality than jpeg photos. This is why the former is usually preferred by people who do some form of professional shooting.

Both the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D can shoot in RAW. However, you need to bear in mind that RAW photos are usually quite large (seeing as they are not compressed) and so will fill up your storage space real quick.

10. Face Detection

Finally, both cameras have the face detection feature. That is, when you’re shooting portraits, both cameras can detect faces and focus on them. Once that is done, they can automatically choose the right exposure for the photo.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – A Sony a7R Demonstration Video

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Unique Features

1. Mirrorless Vs DSLR

At the very core of it, the Sony a7R and the Canon 70D differ as to the kind of camera they are. The Sony a7R is a mirrorless camera while the Canon 70D is a DSLR and this accounts for the way the cameras work, especially as it regards the distribution of light throughout the camera.

DSLRs usually have a mirror and an optical viewfinder while mirrorless cameras usually do not; and yes this is actually pretty important. We’ll explain.

When light passes through the lens of a DSLR, it first hits the mirror. It is the mirror that now reflects part of the light unto the optical viewfinder allowing see the subject you’re framing. The other part goes on to the sensor.

On the other hand, when light passes through the lens of a mirrorless camera, it hits the sensor immediately since there is no mirror. The sensor then processes things and sends what it sees (which is a digital image) to the electronic viewfinder or LCD screen, whichever is available.

Aside this, both cameras work basically the same way, after all, they are both principally cameras. One more thing, the absence of a mirror in the mirrorless camera does not only affect light distribution, it also affects weight. That is, mirrorless cameras are usually lighter than their DSLR counterparts.

2. Weight

Of course, the Canon 70D is significantly heavier than the Sony a7R. The Sony a7R weighs 1 pound while the Canon 70D weighs 1.7 pounds. And while the Sony a7R is a pretty decent weight, there are those who would say the Canon 70D is heavy.

Furthermore, seeing as both cameras are interchangeable lens cameras, attaching a lens to either camera will increase the camera’s weight. As a result, we need to figure out whether attaching a lens to both cameras will alter the weight difference between them. And to that we look to the sensor size.

The Canon 70D has an APS-C sensor which is smaller than the Sony a7R’s full frame sensor. And the implication of this for us is that for the same aperture and focal length the Canon 70D will require smaller lenses than the Sony a7R. So yea, attaching lenses could change the weight difference.

3. ISO Range

We’ve already said a number of things about the lighting when you shoot. There was the one about the exposure and the one about the flash. Now, the ISO is actually related to both of these as it has to do with how much light your camera takes in, basically.

So, the higher you set your camera’s ISO, the more light it lets in and vice versa. The thing is, there is no wrong ISO in itself as the ISO you choose is dependent on what the lighting situation is and how much light you want your camera to capture.

So, if you’ll be shooting in the dark, you’ll want to consider choosing a high ISO so that your camera can let in as much light as is necessary to capture the photo. On the other hand, if you’ll be shooting in a place with so much light, you’ll want to go lower with the ISO.

Knowing this, you’ll agree with us that a wide ISO is a nice thing to have. Because even if you never go as high as the limit allows, it is cool to know that you can go that high if you want to.

That said, of the two cameras, the Sony a7R has the more impressive ISO range. Its ISO range is between 100 and 25600 while that of the Canon 70D is between 100 and 12800. However, in all fairness, that of the Canon 70D can be expanded to 25600. But then again that of the Sony a7R can be expanded to go as far as 51200.

4. Continuous Shooting

The continuous shooting mode allows you to shoot a number of photos in just one second. People who shoot the kind of photography where speed is of the essence, (wildlife photography, sports photography that sort of thing) usually appreciate this mode.

That said, the Canon 70D has the better continuous shooting rate. Its 7 frame per second continuous shooting rate is a little over average while the Sony a7R’s 4 frame per second rate is pretty average.

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5. Near Field Communication

This is a kind of wireless connection, howbeit, offline. A camera (or any device actually) that has this feature can connect with another device that has this feature just by putting both devices one almost on top of the other.

This gives you another means of wirelessly transferring photos and videos from your camera to a different device. That said, of the two cameras, only the Sony a7R has this feature.

6. Inbuilt Flash

We talked about the inbuilt flash when we mentioned the external flash. So, we won’t be talking about what it is here. We just want to mention that we appreciate that the Canon 70D has an inbuilt flash because at those times when carrying an external flash would be a burden, you’ll still have a flash in your camera.

7. Available Lenses

Finally we talk about how many lenses each camera has available with it. The Canon 70D has way more lenses available than the Sony a7R. However, that is not really surprising. We are talking about Canon and Sony here people!

The Sony a7R has 102 lenses available with it, 59 of which are full frame lenses, while the Canon 70D has 319 lenses available.

Furthermore, neither camera has an in body image stabilization feature. As a result, there is a possibility of the cameras shooting blurry photos if they are jostled.

To prevent this from happening, you’ll have to get optical stabilization lenses which will stabilize the sensor and eliminate the possibility of blur. The Sony a7R 23 of those available while the Canon 70D has 91 of them available.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – A Canon 70D Demonstration Video

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Unique Pros

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Pros Of The Sony a7R

  • First off, the Sony a7R has the more impressive sensor resolution.
  • Furthermore, this camera has the more impressive ISO range. So, it will do better in low light than the Canon 70D
  • Also, this camera’s viewfinder is slightly better at framing than that of the Canon 70D. That is because its viewfinder has a 100% coverage while that of the Canon 70D has a 98% coverage.
  • You can use a pair of headphones with the Sony a7R for better audio feedback.
  • Furthermore, this camera has a few more focus points (25) than the Canon 70D (19).
  • Also, this camera has the Near Field Communication connection which is an additional means of transferring your stuff to an off-camera device.
  • The shutter life of the Sony a7R has a longer life expectancy (250000 cycles) than the Canon 70D (150000 cycles).
  • Furthermore, this camera has a better color depth (25.6) and dynamic range (14.1) than the Canon 70D (11.6 and 22.5 respectively).
  • Finally, this camera is significantly lighter than the Canon 70D.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Pros Of The Canon 70D

  • First off, the Canon 70D has a touch screen which is kinda more interesting than buttons.
  • Furthermore, this camera has a longer battery life (920 shots per charge) than the Sony a7R (340 shots per charge).
  • Also, this camera has a top level LCD screen which you could use in making quick changes to your camera without having to move the camera.
  • The Canon 70D has a more impressive continuous shooting rate.
  • Furthermore, this camera has an inbuilt flash which is always handy.
  • And finally, this camera has more lenses available with it than the Sony a7R.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Unique Cons

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Cons Of The Sony a7R

  • The Sony a7R does not have a very impressive battery life.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Cons Of The Canon 70D

  • The Canon 70D could be heavy for some people.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Common Pros

 

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

Viewfinder The Sony a7R has an electronic viewfinder for framing your subject before you shoot. So thankfully, you are not stuck using the LCD screen. Same as the Sony a7R. However, that of this camera is an optical viewfinder.
Sensor Resolution This camera has a really impressive sensor resolution. So, you’ll have enough room to crop your photos and will be able to print them large. Same as the Sony a7R.
Auto Exposure Bracketing We like that this camera has an Auto Exposure bracketing feature, especially for those times when determining the right exposure for a photo could be quite tricky. It’s nice to know that you have help in the form of the AE Bracketing. Same as the Sony a7R.
Articulating Screen The Sony a7R has a tilting screen which allows for flexibility. You’ll really appreciate it when you have to take shots from some weird angles. Same as the Sony a7R. However, this camera has a full-flex screen. So, you’ll be able to use it to shoot and record yourself. Good news for vloggers.
Flash Shoe It is sure good news that this camera has the flash shoe, especially since it doesn’t have an inbuilt flash. Even if it did, the external flash is a better light source, so…. Same as the Sony a7R. However, this camera actually has an inbuilt flash.
Wireless Connection This camera has an inbuilt wireless connection via which you can connect to the internet. As such, you can transfer your photos and videos to an online location. This camera can also be controlled using a smartphone. Same as the Sony a7R.
Weather Sealing We also like that this camera is both dust resistant and water resistant. If it ever comes in contact with dust or water, a wipe down would get things back to normal. Same as the Sony a7R.
Microphone Port You can use an external microphone port with this camera. And if you are recording videos, you’ll want to because the inbuilt microphone will not give you the audio quality you are looking for. Same as the Sony a7R.
RAW Support This camera can shoot in RAW which is a nice idea because RAW doesn’t compress photos. And that a photo is not compressed means that it maintains its original quality. Same as the Sony a7R.
Face Detection Finally, this camera is able to detect faces and automatically set what it considers to be the right exposure for such photo. Same as the Sony a7R.
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Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Common Cons

 

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

Image Stabilization The Sony a7R does not have an in body image stabilization feature. And as a result, photos shot with this camera could come out looking blurry. Thankfully, though, this can be prevented by using optical stabilization lenses which stabilize the sensor. Same as the Sony a7R.

Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – What People Think About Both Cameras

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

One of the things that people almost always point out about this camera is that it has so much functionality in a portable body and for an affordable price. People seem to really dig the image quality that they get from this camera and we can relate because 36 megapixels is a big deal. A few customers praised the camera’s 100% viewfinder coverage because, apparently, it gives a really good representation of what then end product will look like. On the other hand, the Canon 70D has received a lot of glowing reviews. The fully articulated screen and the fact that an external microphone can be attached to it have made this camera attractive to vloggers and people who are looking to doing a one man show. The camera also takes decent photos and people have noticed.
However, basically everybody says this is not their go to camera if speed is of the essence because it doesn’t have a fast autofocus. One customer mentioned that they wouldn’t be using this camera in solemn gatherings either because it doesn’t have a silent shutter. And apparently, beginners might find this camera difficult to figure out. However, some say that they are not exactly satisfied with this camera’s maximum ISO. A few other people have said that the camera will take some getting used to.
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Sony a7R Vs Canon 70D – Our Take

Sony a7R

Canon 70D

This camera has some really interesting features so we are pretty excited about it. We actually think that despite some of the features it is missing, it could make for a good pro camera or at least a really good second best. The sensor resolution is really impressive, it’s ISO can go high enough, it has some wireless features…. What’s there not to like? We also consider the Canon 70D a pretty impressive camera. It takes good photos and has a rotating screen which will make recording yourself by yourself that much easier. Its continuous hooting rate is also a good thing to have on your side. So yea, we like this camera.
Definitely, there are a number of things that could have been added to make this camera that much better. However, that always happens. You can get the Sony a7R now! A few things could be added and improved on as we have already mentioned in the main article. However, if those things are not deal breakers, get the Canon 70D now!