The EOS 6D is best seen as a full frame version of the EOS 60D - indeed it's very similar in both control layout and dimensions. Its front profile is very similar to the Nikon D600, but it's rather slimmer front-to-back, and lighter too. However it differs from the Nikon in a number of key respects; for example it has Wi-Fi and GPS built-in, while the D600 offers a distinctly higher spec'ed autofocus system, dual card slots and a built-in flash.
Canon EOS 6D key specifications
The EOS 6D is built around a new Canon CMOS sensor, which offers a pixel count of 20.2MP (compared to the D600 and A99's 24MP, or the 5D Mark III's 22MP). In concert with the DIGIC 5+ processor it offers a standard ISO range of 100-25600, expandable down to 50 and up to 102,400. The AF system has 11 points, but only the central one is cross-type (i.e. sensitive to both vertical and horizontal detail). However according to Canon to will operate at extremely low light levels; right down to -3 EV – a stop dimmer than the 5D Mark III.
The EOS 6D's most eye-catching additions are integrated GPS and Wi-Fi - their first appearance on a Canon SLR. The GPS unit includes exactly the same functionality as on the company's compacts - it can embed location data into every image, and has a logging function that can keep track of where you've been through the day. This, we suspect, will be most-popular with landscape and travel photographers.
The integrated Wi-Fi unit has the basic functionality you might expect, allowing transfer of images to a smartphone or tablet, and direct upload to social media sites such as Facebook and YouTube. You can also send images directly to a Wi-Fi-enabled printer. But we think more photographers are likely be interested by the fact that it can also be used to turn your smartphone into a wireless remote control via Canon's EOS Remote app for iOS or Android, complete with live view and full control of exposure settings.
The EOS 6D gains Canon's silent shutter mode that we saw on the 5D Mark III, which offers quieter, more discreet shooting. It gets in-camera HDR and Multiple Exposure modes, but disappointingly these are JPEG only, unlike on the 5D Mark III that also records RAW files. There's also a single-axis electronic level to check for wonky horizons.
The 6D doesn't, however, offer the latest goodies Canon introduced on the EOS 650D. There's no on-chip phase-detection to aid autofocus in live view or movie mode, nor does Canon's superb touchscreen interface make an appearance. As usual at this level the screen itself is fixed, rather than articulated as with the 60D the camera is modeled on - Canon says this is for maximum durability and minimum size.