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Canon has announced the 60D, a $1099, 18-megapixel replacement for the venerable 50D. The new SLR boosts the still image resolution and adds Full HD video capture and an articulated LCD screen.
The 60D is built around a 19 megapixel CMOS sensor and DIGIC 4 image processing chip that captures both 18 megapixel still images and 1920 by 1080 video at 24 progressive, 25p and 30p frame rates. The 24p is a native frame rate (some other cameras create 24p by capturing and processing 30p video down) and is saved as a .MOV quicktime file that can be edited in a range of applications. 720p video at 60 frames a second can also be captured.
On the still image side, the 60D is as well specified as you might expect. It can capture RAW and JPEG images simultaneously, with a claimed burst speed of 5.8 frames per second. This can be mentained for an impressive 58 frames, providing plenty of potential for shooting long bursts of images. The ISO level of the camera ranges from 100 up to 6400, with an option to go up to 12800 through a custom function. A 9-point autofocus system is also on offer, with the center focus point being specially designed to be more sensitive for low light shooting. The images can be saved to SDHC or SDXC memory cards.
The 60D also includes a new design of LCD screen, which flips out from the left side of the camera back and rotates on a pivot. Canon calls this a Vari-Angle screen which can tilt up or down and rotate around, providing the option to shoot from above, below, or even to get a preview from in front of the camera for self-portraits. The screen has an impressive 1040k pixel resolution that cna also be used as a live view screen for previewing images and video.
Another first on the 60D is the inclusion of a number of creative image filters. Found on most Canon point & shoot models, these four filters provide special effects such as soft focus and grainy black & white. However, the 60D captures both the origional image and the processed version, so you can revert back to the origional if you don't like the effect.
The 60D will be on sale in September for $1099 (body only) or $1399 for a kit with the EF-S 18-135mm zoom. An additional battery grip (the BG-E9) will also be released at the same time for $270.