Canon 7D Tips: Review of Blue Crane Training DVDs

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The Canon 7D is the most complex camera I have ever owned.  There are so many features crammed in that there can be a real learning curve to getting ready for your first shots.  If you have ever owned a Canon SLR or dSLR, the Canon 7D builds on that heritage and will make you feel at home.  However, there is still plenty of new features to learn and understand.

Do you learn better from a video than a book?  Many people absorb more information when it is visually presented.  If that is the case, these Blue Crane Training DVDs are for you.

Blue Crane split the 7D coverage into two DVDs:

Volume 1: Basic Controls

Exposure Mode Dial
Information Screens
AF Focusing
TV Shutter Priority
Depth of Field
AV Aperture Priority
Default settings & Drive Mode
Image Quality & Size
Live View
Composition Rules
White Balance
Exposure Compensation
AF Modes
Flash Photography Intro
Picture Styles
Photo Playback/Review
Menu System
Custom Functions

Volume 2: Advanced Topics

Pinpoint Focus
Back-Button AF
AF Tracking
Understanding Lenses
Shooting Movies
Understanding Exposure
Manual Exposure
Flash with Hard v. Soft Light
Flash Shutter Sync
Understanding Color & Light
Custom White Balance
Picture Styles
Color Management
Putting Color into Practice
Preparing for a Shoot
Creating My Menu

These DVDs are narrated by Graham Sterling, a veteran presenter for infomercials and news programs.  The high-quality presentation is interesting and easy to watch.  Each topic is split into separate DVD Chapters for easy navigation on either a DVD player or computer.  Each topic is thoroughly covered for both 7D basics and 7D applied use.  You really can learn how to use the 7D from watching these videos.  Blue Crane has released one sample video from each DVD:

About 85% of each DVD is really new video that is dedicated to the 7D.  But, each DVD does have some stock footage which has likely been used in other Blue Crane DVDs.  There were some points which annoyed me.  The DVDs talk about using Photoshop and Camera Raw.  But, if you pay attention, the video is showing Photoshop CS3 and Camera Raw 4.6.  Anyone who has been using the Canon 7D knows that CS3 and ACR 4.6 do not support 7D Raw files.  A silly slip-up in an otherwise good presentation.

These DVDs were just released and may be in short supply.  Adorama has both DVDs at a discount – only $19.99 each:  Canon 7D Volume 1: Basic Controls and Canon 7D Volume 2: Advanced Topics.

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5 Replies to “Canon 7D Tips: Review of Blue Crane Training DVDs”

  1. How do you think this compares to Philip Bloom’s 7D training DVD? it’s certainly a lot cheaper…

  2. Thanks for pointing that out! I saw that he released a 5DII video DVD but did not know he now has a 7D version. Philip Bloom’s video is completely devoted to video recording. That makes it very unique. The Blue Crane DVDs covers video in a few sections while most 7D books devote very little to video. I just received Charlotte Lowrie’s book and video is covered in only 8 pages! I just ordered Bloom’s video and will let you know!

  3. I am just discovering your web site, TONS of help for another 7d user, can you be reached by an e-mail directly? I have seen this dvd series available for the ipad too, but I didn’t know if it was text or video, I am going to try it on the ipad

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