I am looking to buy a new camera body primarily for Macro photography. I am currently shooting on a 2008 spec Canon EOS 450D, but want to upgrade. I have a budget of AUD$1000 and am looking at either a Canon EOS 800D or EOS 80D.

Which one is better for Macro photography and are there any other Canon models that are better at the sub $1000 AUD price point?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I already have a Canon EF 100mm macro lens with IS. \$\endgroup\$
    – O Bhavsar
    Jan 7, 2019 at 4:29
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ So what about 450D + EF 100mm macro is not working for you? \$\endgroup\$
    – xiota
    Jan 7, 2019 at 4:31
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    \$\begingroup\$ @OBhavsar please include all relevant information in your question, rather than stringing a few extra bits into the comments. \$\endgroup\$
    – osullic
    Jan 7, 2019 at 9:24
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @osullic Noted. I'm still pretty new to stack exchange \$\endgroup\$
    – O Bhavsar
    Jan 7, 2019 at 9:25
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    \$\begingroup\$ @OBhavsar you can edit your question with the info from the comments. Comments can then be deleted. And welcome to StackExchange! \$\endgroup\$
    – osullic
    Jan 7, 2019 at 9:26

2 Answers 2


Macro and close-up photography require having the correct lenses. Upgrading the body won't do much good. If you don't already have suitable lenses, the money would be better spent getting one.

Before upgrading the body, it would be helpful to first identify what is unsatisfactory about your current setup. Otherwise, you risk getting another camera with the same problems as your current one.

Personally, when I do closeup work, I prefer "Live View" with focus peaking. As far as I'm aware, Canon DSLRs do not have focus peaking without installing unsupported third-party firmware. So if I were in your situation, it would do no good to switch to another Canon DSLR. You can consider a mirrorless camera, where focus peaking is standard. However, because of the need for new lenses, it would likely be outside of your current budget.

If you are determined to get another Canon DSLR, you can decide by flipping a coin. As far as macro is concerned, you would be equally likely to be satisfied by either of the cameras you are currently considering.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for your help. Which mirrorless camera would you recommend for a budget under AUD$1000 \$\endgroup\$
    – O Bhavsar
    Jan 7, 2019 at 5:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you want focus peaking in live view with Canon cameras, you can install the "Magic Lantern" third-party firmware. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 7, 2019 at 6:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks Logan. Is there a website listing the steps to flashing it and a link to the download? \$\endgroup\$
    – O Bhavsar
    Jan 7, 2019 at 8:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ Magic Lantern \$\endgroup\$
    – xiota
    Jan 7, 2019 at 9:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ There have been many masterful macro photos taken without focus peaking. There will be many more. Focus peaking is nice, but it is far from necessary for top notch macro work. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Jan 7, 2019 at 10:04

Macro photography is all about the skill of the photographer, lenses, and lighting - in that order.

Only after the former have been considered should the differences between two APS-C cameras from the same manufacturer that appear to both use the same sensor be considered as a relatively minor difference.

The primary differences between the EOS Rebel T7i/800D and the EOS 80D are:

  • The 80D has an additional control wheel on the back that allows faster handling, particularly in Manual exposure mode.
  • The 80D allows AFMA (Autofocus Micro Adjustment), the Rebel T7i/800D does not.
  • The 80D has a minimum exposure time of 1/8000 second, the Rebel T7i/700D has a minimum exposure time of 1/4000 second.
  • The 80D has a larger viewfinder with 100% coverage and 0.95X magnification, compared to the Rebel T7i/800D's 95% coverage with only 0.82X magnification. In other words the 80D viewfinder will appear to be about 16% larger (21.375 x 14.155 mm) while showing the camera's full field of view, compared to the smaller viewfinder of the Rebel T7i/800D (18.45 x 12.29 mm) that only shows 95% of the camera's FoV. The 80D's viewfinder also has a brighter pentaprism vs the dimmer pentamirror of the Rebel T7i/800D and 3mm longer eye relief (22mm vs. 19mm).
  • The 80D can shoot at 7 fps in burst mode, the Rebel T7i/800D maxes out at 6 fps.
  • Both cameras have built-in Wi-Fi with NFC, only the Rebel T7i/800D also has Bluetooth.
  • The 80D uses the 1865 mAh LP-E6N battery (shared by most of Canon's xD series cameras other than the 1D series) and has a higher battery rating than the Rebel T7i/800D that uses the 1040 mAh LP-E17 battery.
  • The 80D has a shutter durability rating of 100,000 actuations. The Rebel T7i/800D does not have a published shutter durability rating.

None of these differences are directly applicable to shooting Macro photography in any significant way.

  • Macro photography tends to be done very methodically, so the extra control wheel doesn't really make much of a difference.
  • Most macro photography is done from a tripod using careful manual focus or Dual Pixel CMOS AF in Live View, so the lack of AFMA when doing PDAF via the viewfinder is a moot point. Much Macro photography is done using the lens' MFD (minimum focus distance) and then adjusting the camera to subject distance via a macro rail to bring the subject into focus.
  • Macro photography usually struggles with having enough light, so the lack of 1/8000 second shutter time is not an issue.
  • The differences between the viewfinders is not a consideration if you plan to use Live View, as many macro photographers do, since both cameras have the same rear LCD screen.
  • Burst mode doesn't usually apply to macro photography unless one is photographing skittish insects or other moving subjects.
  • Bluetooth (or lack thereof), battery life, and shutter durability ratings are not direct considerations for macro photography, but may be considerations for the total value of a camera to a buyer.

For doing Macro photography the way it is practiced by those who do the best Macro work, there's no real difference between the Canon EOS 80D and the Canon EOS Rebel T7i/800D.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I shoot Nikon, but another consideration is frame size. Both the 80D and 800D are crop sensors and macro is one place where, at least personally, I actually prefer to shoot crop over full frame. For the same composition you can shoot with a larger subject distance which gives you more depth of field at any given aperture, saving you precious light. It actually does get you better IQ over FF at the same sensor resolution if the lens itself is sufficiently sharp. \$\endgroup\$
    – J...
    Jan 7, 2019 at 21:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @J... Well, sort of. MFD (minimum focus distance) of any particular lens will be the same whether it is mounted on a crop or FF camera. What changes is the angle of view. With a crop sensor you need a lens with a wider AoV to get the same framing at the same subject distance. If you are backing up to get the same framing as you would get with the same lens on a FF body then you are not using the MFD, and you're not getting MM and true 1:1 macro reproduction ratios. You're getting greater DoF because you are increasing the subject distance, but you're also decreasing magnification. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Jan 7, 2019 at 22:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes, but 1:1 isn't the whole story. I'll use my example of the D7100 (24MP DX) vs the D750 (24MP FF). 1:1 only tells you that the image at the sensor will be the same size as the real object. A 10mm spider will make a 10mm image. On a 36mm FF sensor that's 27% of the frame width. On a 24mm sensor it's 46% of the frame - and both sensors have the same number of pixels. The DX pixels are just smaller. At MFD the DX sensor gives you more magnification and more composition options (assuming the glass is good enough to not limit resolution). At the same FF comp, you just get more light. \$\endgroup\$
    – J...
    Jan 8, 2019 at 0:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ In other words, to get the same composition as the FF at MFD, the DX body actually has to back up - the DX can frame any macro shot that the FF can, and more. Backing up can also make lighting easier - a shot you might only have been able to light with ring on FF you might be able to clamshell with DX, for example. In natural light you get more angles to shoot from without being in your own shadow. It's the complete opposite of almost every other type of photography where the compositional advantages are all on DX instead of the other way around. \$\endgroup\$
    – J...
    Jan 8, 2019 at 1:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ @J... But you've also got to account for the higher enlargement ratio to get DX images to the same display size as FF images, which gives back much, but not all, of the DoF advantage from shooting from further away (or with a shorter focal length lens from the same distance). \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Jan 8, 2019 at 8:46

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