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Canon 60Da Overview

by Mike Tomkins
Posted: 04/02/2012

Canon has announced the EOS 60Da, a followup to the EOS 20Da model released way back in 2005, incorporating improvements made in the many intervening years. Like that camera, the EOS 60Da is aimed at astronomers, and is closely related to an existing model: the Canon EOS 60D.

Beyond the new model number, the most notable difference from the standard model is a modified infrared cut filter that has greater transmittance of H-alpha (Hα; 656.28 nanometer wavelength) light than that of the EOS 60D. According to Canon, this should allow H-alpha light sensitivity approximately three times higher than that of the EOS 60D.

Translation? Better pictures of reddish, diffuse nebulae...

(Note: While Canon USA's press release seems to imply that the sensor itself also has improved hydrogen-alpha sensitivity, we see no mention of this in Canon Japan's press materials, and believe this inference isn't intentional.)

Eos-60da-comparison-60d
Eos-60da-comparison-60da
EOS 60D
EOS 60Da

A comparison of the Rosette Nebula shot with Canon EOS 60D and 60Da digital SLRs.
Photos provided by Canon.

As with the EOS 20Da before it, note that while the Canon EOS 60Da can certainly be used for shooting regular pictures as well, they will tend to have something of a reddish cast, and hence it's not really recommended to do so. The EOS 60Da makes more sense as a secondary body to accompany your existing Canon SLR, rather than as your primary body.

The Canon EOS 60Da should go on sale April 2012, with only limited numbers available from select dealers. Estimated retail pricing is around US$1,500, around US$400 above list pricing for the standard EOS 60D.