Canon launches first full-frame mirrorless camera

Canon launches first full-frame mirrorless camera
Published: 6 September 2018 - 5:27 a.m.
By: Pranav Vadehra

Canon has announced its first full-frame mirrorless camera and a new lens mount system, both called EOS R. Coming on the heels of Nikon launching its full-frame mirrorless cameras, the launch of the EOS R means both Japanese imaging giants are now seriously putting their weight behind high-end mirrorless, with brands like Sony and Fujifilm having taken the lead in this segment in recent years.

Canon said in a press release that thirty years since the iconic EOS system was launched, the new EOS R System is a 'revolutionary' new system which will redefine photography. The new RF lens mount has been engineered with a new optical, mechanical and electronic design to "enable innovative full-frame lens designs, faster autofocus and high-speed communication between the camera and lens," said Canon.

The new RF mount has been built on the strengths of the existing EF mount and is the result of years of R&D by Canon engineers, who have designed an impressive optical system with a flange back distance of 20mm and a wide 54mm diameter lens mount - that allows for lenses that are simpler and optically superior. The EOS R mount’s 12-pin connection enables faster communication and power transmission between the lens and camera body, further enhancing lens design options, resulting in higher image quality and enhanced usability.

At the core of the EOS R is a 30.3-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor with an ISO range of 100-40000 (expandable to 50-102400), paired with a DIGIC 8 image processor. The EOS R System comes with a dual pixel CMOS autofocus that Canon says delivers the world’s fastest autofocus and faster communication between camera and lens.

Mr Yuichi Ishizuka, President and CEO, Canon Europe, Middle East & Africa, commented: “When we launched the EOS System 30 years ago, we sent a clear message that the future of photography was here. Now, as one of the most iconic imaging systems in the world, our commitment remains. Canon will continue to invest in the unrivalled EOS world with cameras, lenses and accessories that set new heights in image quality, optical excellence and performance, all while satisfying the ever-evolving needs and demands of its customers.”

Canon also unveiled the first camera body to carry the EOS R name and RF lens mount with the world’s fastest autofocus, claims Canon. It is also the world’s first camera with the ability to focus in light as low as -6EV and totally silent shooting, providing stunning quality results every time.

The EOS R System allows users to shoot and film in extremely low light with accurate focusing, thanks to the dual pixel CMOS AF. It also offers the highest standard of movie output from any Canon EOS System camera, outside of the Cinema EOS range, with 4K filming and output in 10-bit over HDMI. The system has a new touchscreen, an OLED electronic viewfinder and extensive customisation, such as Touch and Drag focusing and Focus Peaking.

The camera has an 8fps continuous shooting speed (for bursts of up to 100 max-quality JPEGs, 47 RAW, or 78 C-RAW), a shutter lag is as short as 50 milliseconds, and a startup time of 0.9 seconds. The AF system can achieve focus in as little as 0.05 seconds (when using the new RF 24-105mm f/4L IS lens), which is presently the fastest autofocus speed in the world according to Canon.

The Verge has reported that the camera will retail for $2,299 body-only or $3,399 with the 24-105mm lens, and will begin shipping late October, with preorders starting September 12th.

New lineup of lenses

Canon has designed a new line of RF lenses specifically for this new mirrorless ecosystem, but the entire lineup of EF, EF-S, TS-E, and MP-E lenses are compatible with the camera if you use the EF-EOS R Mount Adapter. The EOS R System inherits full compatibility with existing EF and EF-S lenses and accessories when using one of three newly-developed lens adapters.

Canon has launched four new lenses, compatible with the EOS R System – the RF 28-70mm f/2L USM, RF 50mm f/1.2L USM, RF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM and RF 35mm f/1.8 MACRO IS STM. Users of existing Canon EOS full frame or APS-C DSLR cameras can enjoy the EOS R System with their existing EF and EF-S lenses thanks to the adapters, while retaining the same performance as when used on a DSLR, as well as access to EOS accessories and Speedlite flashes.

Further expanding the existing EOS System, Canon today also launches the EF-M 32mm f/1.4 STM – a new 32mm lens for the EOS M mirrorless system – and the EF 400mm f/2.8L IS III USM and EF 600mm f/4L IS III USM, two revolutionary, lightweight professional super telephoto lenses for the EF System.

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