Canon 80D vs 90D: Exploring the Upgrades

Two popular Canon cameras, 80D and 90D were rolled out in 2016 and 2019. These DSLR models contain an APS-C sensor, and are 3 years apart. The 90D model shows 32.3 MP as opposed to the 80D’s 24 MP resolution.

After introducing the Canon EOS 80D in 2016, the manufacturer realized it was time for an upgrade after 3 years. The newer 90D camera offers improved features, such as a high resolution sensor. These midrange cameras are also preferred by seasoned photographers. In today’s guide, we will pit them face-to-face with each other. Let’s start the war of Canon 80D vs 90D!

The other Canon's I reviewed:
Interested in only Canon 80D? Go through this review.

Canon 80D vs 90D: Comparison of Bodies

The front appearance of both models are similar. But even with the striking resemblance, one can see differences at the back. Canon 90D includes a joystick, which is somewhat modified. This attractive addition makes changing the autofocus a breeze.

Some extra buttons are shifted owing to this joystick. For instance, the review button is placed beside the Delete button and the Q button is moved to the base. But apart from this, the configuration of models is identical. Not only this, the control structure of both cameras is the same when seen from above.

The current Canon 80D users can easily operate the 90D. But keep in mind that the manufacturer lowered the weight of 90D. It is now 619 grams, and is more portable

Design

The Canon 90D has an impeccable design. It is very similar to the Canon 32 MP EOS 80D. Canon 90D weighs 0.1 pounds less than its rival. The good part is that both models are resistant to weather, which means that your gear will be protected from drastic weather conditions.

A major selling point of this branded lineup is the appealing LCD display, particularly for the ones who shoot vlogs. There are more options to see angles owing to the 3-inch vari-angle display. This feature also leads to sharper videos and pictures.

The LCD display is a gimmick on a high-quality model with plenty of physical buttons. However, if you prefer a digital experience, you have nothing to worry about! The 90D is improved by adding a joystick at the back. This feature is missing from Canon 80D. The joystick allows a simpler way to pick the focus point.

Weight

Since professionals have to carry their equipment everywhere, weight is a critical factor. Even though the Canon 90D is more lightweight than its rival, this hardly influences the performance.

Moreover, keep in mind that while comparing these interchangeable models, weight is just one of the factors. Sensors and lenses are other important aspects. Canon has boosted settings that DSLR fans prefer and it has also kept the appealing dials.

Furthermore, the Canon 90D presents a more comfy and stretched grip, as well as a lightweight body. This minimal design improvement boosts comfort and makes it simpler for professionals to operate the gear.

Sensor

As opposed to the predecessor, the extraordinary sensor of the Canon 90D is a major limelight. Both models include an APS-C sensor. However, the brand has boosted the newest model’s megapixel count to 32.5.

This APS-C camera now boasts the highest resolution available in the Canon lineup. Not everyone will take advantage of the improved number of megapixels. However, this improvement ensures better cropping options and a finer detail for big prints.

The latest Digic 8 Image Processor in Canon 90D is also quicker as compared to the DIGIC 6 in the predecessor. The ISO range of the high-quality sensor brings the best perk of resolution. Canon 90D’s talent to boost the ISO range to 51,200 is useful during shooting in dim lighting.

The stretched ISO range of Canon 80D is 25,600, and while it is impressive, it’s still lesser than the 90D. The metering sensor in Canon 90D is also upgraded, leading to more precise exposure. Its metering sensor now adds 220,000 RGB+IR pixels. In comparison, the Canon 80D includes a 7,560 pixel RGB+IR metering sensor.

Autofocus

Canon 80D and 90D both have a 45 point autofocus system via the viewfinder and use the branded Dual Pixel Autofocus for rapid live view focus. The manufacturer could not do much to improve the autofocus on the predecessor as it already included impressive accuracy and speed.

But the Canon 90D was blessed with Intelligent Tracking and Recognition, also termed as EOS iTR technology. This means that the newer model can quickly maintain focus and track subjects owing to this feature. The iTR technology uses the high resolution metering sensor in order to identify color and brightness in the scene.

But the Canon 90D is also laced with the face detection focusing for the optical viewfinder. This camera’s ability to blend viewfinder shooting with face detection, usually reserved for DSLRs or mirrorless models in the live view mode, is helpful for portrait photographers.

Speed

The Canon 90D is the unrivaled winner in the speed department. Opposed to the 80D 7 fps, the 90D is able to shoot persistently at 10 fps in JPEG or RAW format while utilizing the viewfinder. In the live view, it is at 11 fps. In contrast, the Canon 80D presents live view shooting at only 5 fps, which is a letdown.

When it comes to the shutter speed, the Canon 90D again manages to outshine the predecessor owing to its modern electronic shutter. This addition is generally observed in mirrorless models, but is unusual in DSLR cameras. Due to the electronic shutter, photographers can achieve an insane speed of 1/16,000 second. This is twice as quick as the Canon 80D mechanical shutter.

Battery Life

As opposed to the mirrorless models, DSLR cameras include a major benefit in the battery life department. The batteries in both cameras are considerably better than the premium mirrorless models in the market.

But when compared against each other, the battery of Canon 90D (LP-E6N) is more energetic. During shooting, the camera ensures 1,300 images on one charge rather than only 960 shots guaranteed by the Canon 80D.

However, both models are great options to shoot all day. But still, the longer battery life of 90D is more tempting to serious professionals. For example, wedding photographers are habitual of snapping thousands of images in one event. This means that they hunt for a model that requires no change in batteries during the shoot.

Comparison of Connections

The extent to which a model can communicate with the vicinity may be important while picking equipment for specific imaging applications. Here are the available connections and their quality of both cameras:

Controls

As opposed to the Canon 80D, the newer model feels and looks a tad more premium or professional. But apart from the addition of a joystick, the control arrangement is almost the same. Photographers can easily and rapidly adjust the exposure settings via the control wheel. This wheel is present behind the shutter release and revolves around the navigation.

Moreover, some buttons are added for essential settings, such as autofocus point selection modes, sensitivity ISO range, focus, and drive. But photographers must employ the Main Menu or Quick Settings to tweak the white balance.

Touchscreen With Numerous Axis

The upgraded Canon 90D presents a fully articulating vari-angle LCD display, similar to the credible predecessor. Owing to the dynamic maneuverability, professionals can creatively frame the images and snap pictures even from the most complicated angles.

Moreover, the touch sensitive LCD display makes navigation a breeze. Finally, the touch to shoot feature makes capturing images more possible and makes picking the focal point more natural.

LCD Display Size

The 3-inch back LCD panel of both cameras add a 1,040,000-dot resolution. The screen diagonal guarantees the size of the LCD display. It is useful to have an intricate, big screen at the back for adjusting settings, picture examination, and live view framing.

As a bigger camera model adds extra space on the rear for the attachment of a huge back display, the LCD measurements should logically be inversely equal to the camera measurements.

Viewfinder

The area of the subject which a camera can shoot is shown to the professional through a viewfinder. This component of a camera typically serves as a rangefinder focusing system or a direct visual. Plus, the viewfinder can also be utilized to display meter data or exposure settings.

Both Canon cameras include a “What you see is what you get” viewfinder, which is completely optical. The composition of the picture file totally matches the composition in the viewfinder. Small viewfinders on a few compact models make it tough to view a subject.

Dynamic Range

The relationship between the picture’s darkest and brightest portions is known as dynamic range. Even the most elite digital cameras are able to grasp half the human eye range. The Initial Dynamic Range testing employing 90D sample images showcases a marginal upgrade in dynamic range over the predecessor model.

80D is unique from the other brand’s offerings due to the APS-C sensor, ISO 200,andand a dynamic range of 6.75 stops. As opposed to the 70D camera, this sensor presents a more dynamic range at ISO 100 and almost 2 full stops. This leads to significantly cleaner shadows and no noise.

Frame Per Rate

Not much difference exists in frame per rate of both Canon cameras. Canon EOS 80D ensures high-speed 7 fps continuous shooting. This proves that the predecessor is ideal for rapid action, with continuous shooting speed of 7 fps. Another continuous mode is 3 fps low-speed.

Burst shooting in live view mode is provided in 90D at 7 fps with continuous autofocus. In single shot autofocus, it is 11 fps.

Video

Videographers applaud Canon cameras, especially the EOS 5D Mark II which introduced the DSLR video revolution. The manufacturer updated the 90D to add 30p/4K shooting capability when videographers requested it.

More importantly, the 90D can shoot 4K videos throughout the sensor width, as opposed to the previous 4K models from the same brand that cropped the sensor to create a shallow field of view.

Videographers can record at the highest frame per rate of 120, which was first added to the 80D. A sluggish slow motion video and full HD video is made by this. The highest recording time on the both cameras is 29.59 minutes.

Photography Niches

Portrait Photography

Choosing between a full-frame or a crop sensor model is the most basic factor while choosing a camera to execute portrait photography. Both Canon cameras are perfect for this niche. However, the 90D model is a tad better, which is why portrait photographers use it for shooting.

Sports Photography

A capable sports camera has to be sharp and agile to record the fast moving subjects. Do not just consider the megapixels. The 90D camera is a great choice for sports photography as it fulfills all preferences to capture the unpredictable subjects. Hence, you don’t have to dig deeper for alternative models.

Wildlife Photography

Since this is the rarest photography niche that demands patience and fast planning, professionals are picky to choose an appropriate camera for it. Canon EOS 90D should be your pick as many famous wildlife photographers have chosen this model in their careers.

The rapid continuous shooting speed is 10 fps. And who can forget the Intelligent Tracking and Recognition focus tracking. There is no beating the Canon 90D’s speed. Photographers can enjoy this speed in both JPEG and RAW formats with the viewfinder. But it is disheartening to see the 5 fps continuous live view speed of 80D.

Last Words

The highlights of Canon EOS 90D are 4K videography, latest 32.5 megapixel sensor, and 10 fps continuous shooting. These features alone are worth the extra $500 over its predecessor.

Aside from the obvious differences, the 90D is a perfect DSLR for very ignored, minor details. For instance, the shutter speed is twice more powerful, and above 300 additional images are added to the battery life. Not only this, it also includes the first-ever DSLR-specific electronic shutter in the market.

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