Canon EOS 90D

Canon EOS 90D

The Canon EOS 90D is a midrange DSLR that replaces the 3.5-year-old 80D and fits between the EOS 77D and the 'yes, it still exists' EOS 7D Mark II. It gains a new higher-resolution sensor with excellent Raw image quality and offers competitive live view AF (with eye detect) as well as 4K video capture, all in a familiar package.

The 90D is essentially the DSLR version of the mirrorless EOS M6 Mark II, which was introduced alongside it. Since the specs are nearly identical, it looks like Canon is letting potential buyers choose what type of shooting experience they want: a midsize DSLR with an optical viewfinder and more physical controls, or a smaller and lighter mirrorless model with a removable electronic finder. And, of course, the difference in native lens lineups between the EF and M mounts could attract different types of users, as well.

Key features:

  • 32.5 Megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Dual Pixel autofocus (live view/video)
  • 45-point all cross-type AF (through the viewfinder)
  • 220k-pixel metering sensor w/face detection
  • 7 fps burst shooting w/continuous AF
  • Fully articulating 3" touchscreen display
  • Optical viewfinder w/100% coverage
  • 4K/30p video capture with no crop
  • USB 2.0 port with Micro USB connector
  • Wi-Fi + Bluetooth

While the external design of the 90D doesn't dramatically depart from the pattern set down by the 80D, the guts of the new camera are quite a bit different, which we'll cover on the next page.



What we like:

What we don't:

  • Excellent Raw image quality, both detail capture and dynamic range are up there with the best APS-C competitors
  • Pleasing JPEG color
  • Good live view autofocus with eye detection
  • Lovely optical finder
  • 4K video with no crop
  • 10 fps through the finder shooting
    (w/ AF)
  • Good quality Full HD capture
  • Responsive touch LCD flips 180 degrees
  • Well-built camera body with excellent ergonomics
  • Weather-sealed
  • Microphone and headphone ports
  • Good battery life
  • WiFi and Bluetooth
  • AF joystick
  • Default through-the finder autofocus is not very accurate
  • Over-aggressive default JPEG noise reduction
  • Limited viewfinder AF coverage
  • Soft 4K video
  • 7 fps live view shooting (with AF)
  • No 24p option in 4K or 1080 video
  • No USB charging
  • No Log gamma in video
  • Digital IS for video comes with heavy crop
  • Confusing menu layout
  • Limited button customization
  • Optically-unimpressive 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 kit lens
  • No in-body stabilization limits options for hand-held video shooting


Overall conclusion

The Canon EOS 90D is a capable DSLR that happens to be at its best when used in live view mode.

Canon's latest enthusiast APS-C DSLR represents a solid leap forward in image quality for this line. The 90D, along with its mirrorless near-twin the EOS M6 II, both share what is at the time of publishing, the highest resolution APS-C sensor on the market. It offers outstanding Raw detail capture and noise performance, up there with other class-leaders like the Sony a6400. Canon JPEG color continues to be a favorite, but Canon's default JPEG noise reduction continues to be overly aggressive - fortunately, this can be dialed down.

Through-the-viewfinder autofocus tracking should, in theory, be more reliable than the EOS 80D thanks to an updated metering sensor. But any jumps in image recognition capability seem hampered by an autofocus system that is essentially unchanged from its predecessor, with somewhat limited coverage and poor out-of-the-box accuracy. Dual Pixel CMOS autofocus in live view, by contrast, is excellent, with great coverage and accuracy. Face and eye detect AF both work with good reliability, whether shooting stills or video.










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