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So Canon 60D is considered a semi-pro machine, but it's like 3 years old, while the 700D is a year old and can pack the same punch it seems from the specs.

Does the 60D have anything that the 700D doesn't?

Is it really better?

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I doubt many true pros would consider either of these cameras more or less 'semi-pro' than the other. They are both entry level/amateur grade cameras. –  Michael Clark Feb 8 at 15:17
    
Nikon D60 or Canon 60D? There's a big difference there. –  Michael Clark Feb 8 at 18:15
    
@MichaelClark, I was wondering if it was the Canon D60. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_EOS_D60 –  Dan Wolfgang Feb 8 at 18:29
    
The Canon D60 is considerably more than "...like 3 years old...". It has been 12 years since it was released. The Nikon D60 is 6 years old and the Canon 60D is 3 1/2. Both the Nikon D60 and the Canon 60D are still readily available from major sellers as new cameras. The same can not be said about the Canon 60D. –  Michael Clark Feb 8 at 18:46
    
Snapsort is great at answering these kinds of questions objectively: snapsort.com/compare/Canon-EOS-700D-vs-Canon_EOS_60D –  Mark Whitaker Feb 17 at 9:55

3 Answers 3

Both the Canon 60D and the 700D/T5i are built around the same basic sensor: Canon's 18MP APS-C sensor with 4.3µm pixel pitch. It has also appeared in the T2i/550D, T3i/600D, T4i/650D,SL1/100D, EOS M, and 7D. When shooting RAW and editing on a computer any of these cameras can use the latest updates to Canon's demosaicing algorithms and image processing that have improved over the time this sensor has been in use.

But the sensor is not the only thing that makes a camera a consumer grade, prosumer grade, or professional level camera. There are other things to consider:

  • Handling speed. It doesn't matter how good the image quality of your sensor is if your camera handles too slow to get the shot you need. This applies to the placement of controls, how many clicks it takes to change a setting, the frame rate the camera can burst, and startup and shutter lag times.
  • Durability. The ability to stand up to day in and day out heavy use in challenging environments is a larger consideration when your livelihood depends on the reliability of your gear.

The biggest difference in my mind is the faster handling of the 60D versus the 600D. The 60D has two control wheels and more direct controls that allow for changing settings on the fly without removing your eye from the viewfinder. This allows an experienced shooter who intimately knows his camera to get certain shots in challenging situations he couldn't get with the 600D.

In some ways the 60D was a step back from the 50D as a lower end pro grade camera. At the same time the 7D was a step up from the 50D. The magnesium allow body of the 50D (and 7D) was replaced by a polycarbonate one for the 60D. The 60D is not quite as weather sealed as the 50D and 7D. The 50D (and 7D) included Auto Focus Micro Adjustment, the 60D does not have AFMA. But the 60D still has more features that pros demand that are lacking in the Rebel series.

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As already pointed out none of them would be considered more "pro" than the other by working photographers. There are differencies though and I list some of the advantages of the 60D below:

  • 60D has a pentaprism (instead of a pentamirror in the 700D) which is a lot better (it's brighter) albeit heavier.
  • 60D has a larger viewfinder which makes omposing and manual focusing easier
  • The sensor of the 60D is according to DxOMark better (lower noise and better image quality and more dynamic range)
  • 60D is said to be better wheather sealed than the 700D
  • 60D's battery will produce 1100 shots on one charge vs 550 shots for the 700D

There are also some (in my opinion) lesser advantages such as less start up delay and shutter lag, higher maximum shutter speed, faster continious shooting and higher viewfinder coverage.

Additionally the 60D is available in the 60Da variant which is a very specialised version that is considered "pro" since it's unique even when compared to the conventional "pro" bodies.

When deciding of it's better or not it's so subjective that I can't give an answer since price comes into play. It all comes down to what the user is prepared to pay, but if money where of no concern and the touch screen unimportant i would choose the 60D.

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The miniscule differences in the actual screen measurements at DxO mark are well within the expected range of copy to copy variation. Why their composite scores are much wider than the actual measured data published by DxO is a question only they can answer. I suspect it has to do with slightly different reverse engineered algorithms used to interpret the data form the respective sensors since DxO Mark does not use Canon's algorithms. These two cameras, for all practical purposes, have the same sensor. –  Michael Clark Feb 8 at 18:54
    
@MichaelClark I really can't judge of the widht of the distribution regarding screen differencies is within the vartiations in the manifacturing process (I don't have the statistics). I also don't know how many bodies that DxO Labs samples for each analysis. This also applies to sensor quality measurements. I don't know what you mean by that the composites scores are wider than the data mesured. The scores are simply indices (without any units of measurement associated with them) and how they translate to physical measurements is only something DxO Labs know. –  Hugo Feb 9 at 6:06
    
@MichaelClark I simply provided a third party source to compare the cameras and they state different image qualities. I agree however that the sensor seem to be very similar at the very least and of course the differencies in scores could just be a result of copy to copy variation, but it can also be a result of different signal processing and more. –  Hugo Feb 9 at 6:10
    
Click 'Measurements-->SNR 18%-->Screen'. Also 'Dynamic Range', 'Tonal Range', 'Color Sensitivity'. DxO claims to measure the data before off chip signal processing is applied. The slight differences in sensitivity at some ISO settings may be a result of Canon slightly modifying the chip output at that ISO or it could be differences in algorithms used by DxO. DxO does not use Canon's own algorithms but instead reverse engineers their own when testing Canon sensors. dxomark.com/Cameras/Compare/Side-by-side/… –  Michael Clark Feb 9 at 15:03
    
The differences is the actual 'Measurements' accessed by clicking the 'Measurements' tab are minute. They are nowhere near the difference the "Overall Score" and the "Sports" score indicate on the "Score" tab. –  Michael Clark Feb 9 at 15:06

The 60D is probably still below the pro-sumer level, but it is closer due to the larger and clearer pentaprism OVF, the better weather sealing, the much longer battery life, the higher bit depth, and the faster max shutter speed.

The image sensors themselves may be relatively close, but a sensor isn't all that makes a camera. The usability and durability of the camera is a much bigger factor in the selection of cameras at the professional and prosumer level. It stops being simply about having a device that CAN take a good photo and becomes more about having a device that can take a good photo EASILY.

For a consumer, this last point moves in the opposite direction of that for a professional. For a consumer, shallower depths of field (such as a full frame sensor, though that isn't applicable in this comparison) and additional controls complicate things and make it harder to use, so the camera does more for you to simplify things.

For a more experienced photographer on the other hand, they know how to use those more advanced capabilities and don't want to be fighting the camera to let them do what they want. They want a much more granular degree of control over the device and want to have the ability to get as thin of depth of fields as possible to give them more versatility.

So, you can see that the main differences between a professional camera and a consumer camera are not the sensor performance, so much as the way it is built and the way it is controlled. It is true that professional and prosumer cameras typically do have better sensors than their consumer counterparts within a generation, but this is not what makes them professional. That's why there is such a healthy used market for old 5D and 1D bodies that may be even multiple generations older and might even have lower quality sensors, yet they still sell for more than a consumer model with a better sensor.

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