Canon 77D Video
Canon 77D Video Features, Specs & Analysis
by Jaron Schneider | Posted 09/18/2017
The 77D and T7i share a lot in common, especially their sensor and the performance of it. In that same vein, the 77D video performance and feature sets are pretty identical to that of the T7i.
Canon 77D Video Recording Options & Quality
There is no 4K, but you can shoot in 1080p at 60 frames per second (technically 59.94 but you get the idea), but it's at a relatively low bit rate of 60 Mbps. That means that though you can get good video, you'll want to nail the exposure in camera, as the dynamic range is going to be very limiting if you try and adjust scenes in post.
There are two types of 30p recording options offered, one is the standard 30 Mbps, the other a very light 12 Mbps. You can record for a bit longer with the lower data rate, but you'll also notice that any ability to adjust scenes in post, which was already limited, becomes next to impossible. The light recording setting I would reserve for emergencies (like when you're running out of SD cards) or for families who don't particularly care about compression quality, but instead just want to get everything on camera.
Canon 77D Video Speed & Feeds
- 1920 x 1080p at 59.94, 50.00 fps (60 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 1920 x 1080p at 29.97, 25.00, 23.98 fps (30 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 1920 x 1080p at 29.97, 25.00 fps (12 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 1280 x 720p at 59.94, 50.00 fps (26 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 1280 x 720p at 29.97, 25.00 fps (4 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 640 x 480p at 29.97, 25.00 fps (9 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
- 640 x 480p at 29.97, 25.00 fps (3 Mbps MP4 via H.264)
The 77D, like the T7i, can record in an HDR mode. This mode records video at 1920 x 1080 in 60p (50p for PAL), but merges every two frames together into a single frame and exports that to 30p (25p). The idea is that it can gather more light data that way and provide a scene that is more balanced with shadows and highlights, but the end result lacks quite the noticeably that such a feature offers in photo mode.
The 77D comes with a built-in intervalometer for both stills and in-camera time-lapse movies. The time-lapse movie mode allows you to select the intervals between frames as well as the number of video frames in the finished video. You can also tell it to use automatic exposure to meter for each frame, or lock exposure to your choice. The final recording time can be as short as one second to as long as 99 hours, 59 minutes, 59 seconds. Time-lapse movies are 1920 x 1080 and are played back at 30p (25p) with a bit rate of about 90 MBps.
Though there is an HDMI out port, it's the fragile "mini-HDMI" (Type-C) connector, and there is no clean HDMI feed for higher quality recording to an external device. In fact, recording with an external device is not possible. Its design looks to be more for streaming to a television than it is for professional recording, which is probably fine given the target audience for the camera.
Though the 77D does have a microphone jack and the aforementioned mini-HDMI port, it lacks a headphone jack for audio monitoring. This rather severely limits the usability of recording in-camera for those who take recording video even somewhat seriously, which is a shame considering the power of Dual Pixel CMOS AF for autofocus and the very handy omni-directional screen, two features that young filmmakers and vloggers would enjoy.
Canon 77D Video Autofocus
Speaking of that Dual Pixel CMOS AF, the speed and accuracy of using autofocus was a great experience. Tapping to focus worked pretty much every time, and the camera never "hunted" around for the subject. It doesn't look as natural as manually rack focusing (which is important in video), but it's much better than things used to be not just a couple years ago. The tracking accuracy I tested was also spot on.
The 77D offers three types of autofocus tracking, depending on use:
Face Detect + Tracking
Focus takes place over a broad area of the video image, with face detection active. If human faces are detected, the camera will concentrate focus on the most prominent face in the scene. In scenes without faces, it will automatically focus on the nearest detailed subject in the scene. With the touchscreen interface, just tap the screen to put sharpest focus elsewhere, even on the background if you want. This detection is pretty reliable, and a face will have to go behind a foreground element for a few seconds for the camera to lose track of it and start to hunt.
Smooth Zone AF
A smaller zone of AF sensors starts at the center of the image area, but you're free to move it by just tapping or dragging the larger rectangle where you want over most of the total picture area. Focus takes place within the zone, again usually on the nearest detailed subject that's within the big white on-screen icon.
Live 1-point AF
This uses a single focus point on the LCD monitor for focus. With the touchscreen interface, this can be re-positioned anywhere within an area roughly 80% of the horizontal width and vertical height of the total video image area, by just tapping or dragging the small AF icon. This is the best mode to use when trying to direct the camera to focus on what you want it to, and rack between subjects. It's extremely reliable, especially for those in the 77D's target market.
Canon included a digital image stabilizer that doesn't use hardware at all, but software. The stabilization is performed electronically at the image at the CMOS imaging sensor. The sensor itself doesn't move, but the image is electronically moved on the sensor in direct reaction to movement detected by in-camera sensors.
This digital stabilization is combined with the stabilization in lenses, combining two forms of stabilization during video recording, if the lens has IS. If using a lens without built-in optical IS, Movie Digital IS is performed independently, and can be activated or disabled in the shooting menu screen.
Canon 77D Video Features Summary
Overall, I would say that the 77D records video, but it's not what I would call a video camera. It's fine, but it doesn't particularly excel in any area, opting instead to offer just enough features to coast to an "ok" overall. The ease of use is certainly a high point for the 77D, but anyone looking for even slightly more depth when it comes to options and recording features will be disappointed. This is a great camera for an absolute beginner, and is highly recommended as a starting DSLR.
- Offers 1080p60 for slow motion video
- On-sensor software stabilization that combines with lens image stabilization
- Excellent autofocus options and accuracy with Canon's Dual Pixel sensor
- Includes a microphone jack for using external microphone
- Built-in intervalometer
- Lacks 4K
- Time code is not provided when recording
- Recording to external recorders via HDMI is not possible
- There is no headphone jack for monitoring incoming sound
- The ALL-I video compression method is only possible during time-lapse movie recording. Video files are otherwise always recorded in the more highly-compressed IPB file type which causes a noticeable dip in visual clarity.
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