Video Clips Highlight the Tracking Speed of the Canon 70D’s Dual Pixel AF

Canon made a bit of a splash when it released the 70D, touting lightning fast live view and movie mode auto focus that would put the previous system to shame. The tech is called “Dual Pixel,” and now we have a few clips that show you just how fast the system works while filming in movie mode.

The clips come to us courtesy of the Japanese site Nikkei Trendy, and they do a great job highlighting the tracking speed of the 70D’s AF. Unlike the clips we showed before, these were shot in typical-use situations, and weren’t put together solely to show how fast the system can switch between extremes.


Dual Pixel technology works by splitting each pixel into two photodiodes. Those two are then used separately to judge depth for focusing purposes, and together once you actually press the shutter.

According to a white paper on the tech that Canon released about a week ago, what you’re seeing above and below is actually a slowed down version of the AF system. You’ll get the full speed when shooting photos, but movie mode had to be slowed down so it would be “less jarring”

That same white paper explains that it took Canon half a year to adjust the algorithms so that the system worked with all 103 lenses tested. Naturally, the company is pretty confident with the results.

To see Dual Pixel technology in action, click play on either of the two videos above. And if you’d like to find out more about the development process or read up on the tech behind the fast tracking speeds seen above, check out the aforementioned paper by clicking here.

(via Imaging Resource)

  • Mike

    Very impressive.
    Closer examination of the videos shows the system a little late to react when the kid gets just slightly OOF. Still, impressive results with shallow DOF.

  • Fullstop

    This is pretty good for a dslr with autofocus. Boggles my mind why this couldn’t have been included in the 5DMK3.

  • Dave

    This is nearly a “good bye Nikon” moment. Or maybe just wait around a few months until their solution is announced.

  • Comma

    It would have been a big risk if they tried this out in the 5dmk3, especially considering there is every chance there will be teething problems. Putting it in the 70d is a smart move, no big loss if it doesn’t make a big splash, and if it revolutionises things, the sales of the 5dmk4 will be phenomenal.

  • Cochese

    Probably because the tech wasn’t ready for the 5DIII. It’ not as if they were released at remotely the same time…