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Andrew Reid

What REALLY prompted Canon suddenly to get their act together with video?

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If EOSHD were a record player, there would be one particular groove it just couldn't get over. It'd be the part of the record where she sings "why are Canon's video specs so rubbish and where is the Canon full frame 4K high end mirrorless camera?", and admittedly this isn't the stuff of a number 1 hit single. I for one am very grateful the fat lady has finally shut up. I cannot put into words how relieved I am to no longer have to complain about Canon! Even the site name now makes sense! That gamble I made 10 years ago in believing Canon would run away with the DSLR video scene may yet pay off! It's just that I've spent the first 10 years shooting mostly Panasonic and Sony. Canon seriously dropped the ball and for the longest time just didn't seem to listen.

Speculative reasons for this have been legion - some say Canon lacked the technological capability to compete. Some say Canon wanted to avoid cannibalising Cinema EOS sales, or that Canon simply didn't see a market for full frame 4K after the relative failure of the 1D C. Some say their sales had an unassailable lead with just 8bit 1080p (especially C300 and 5D Mark III) so why bother trying harder? Now there's another interesting theory, that Canon R&D works on a 10-year cycle with a big leap ready to storm the market at the end of each cycle, building on the initial success (reusing sensors in multiple bodies) with incremental improvements for 8-9 years before the next big leap. Let's go all the way back to 2000 with the genesis of the Canon DSLR and CMOS sensor technology, fast forward 10 years and the cycle has resulted in a 5D Mark II taking the world by storm, a big leap on everything that went before and ahead of every other competitor at the time. Fast forward another 10 years to 2020 and Canon looks to be doing a similar thing with the EOS R5. Could it be that Canon are just conservative, slow to make major moves, very calculated and taking the long term picture into account?

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Looking good but after 10 years of repeated disappointment, I'll wait for the final release to make a judgement on this camera. I hope for the beast but fear the small*, **, ***, and other omissions on the official press release. May the Hawaiian gods of photography illuminate the world with their infinite wisdom. Amen.

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I have the theory that the specs are no lie, that there won't be too many gotchas (beyond rolling shutter issues and the like that plague a lot of high mega pixel cameras with current CMOS tech).

Why?

I think Canon has the perfect opportunity, while the market has stagnated, to surge back and make sure the Canon brand is still what EVERYONE thinks of in the photography and video. Especially since Sony seems to have held back/stumbled with the A7S and their APS-C lineup. They went from relentless innovation and spec refreshes to mediocre name changes. In other words, they starting pulling a Canon.

Case in point. My daughter has started to become interested in photos and video...what did she want not knowing anything about cameras? She wanted a Canon. Because thats what all the Pros use. You see them on the sidelines of games. You see them being used by YouTubers. You see an ancient 5D Mark III being used by the photographer that took family photos a year ago...

For her photography meant buying a Canon camera.

I think Canon has been forced into throwing out their best stuff to simply survive, and the timing is good now. They cashed in for years on their same old tech in new bodies and with a few tweaks. Very little development overhead probably went into the EOS R. It was basically the same old sensor, tweaked for mirrorless, with underwhelming specs but a good 8-bit no fuss image. But it had their new mount...where all the real hard work and planning went into.

IF canon delivers a 4K120p camera, WITH IBIS, WITH their excellent DPAF, WITH 10-bit no fuss Canon codec and color science...you can't ignore it. You would nave to have a very specific reason not to be interested in buying an R5/R6 and investing in the Canon glass. Because so far, it's specs satisfies almost everyone's needs out there. The best AF, great no hassle colors SOC, 10-bit, 4K, 8K for the ones that care,  a modern, adaptable mirrorless mount...

It's a play for the FF market. It's a play to push out Panasonic and Nikon, and seize the mirrorless FF market and lock in another generation of video/photo people into RF/EF and Canon mirrorless.

Panasonic's situation is looking pretty grim. They need to sort out their AF or their FF camera's won't survive, for sure.

Nikon is looking pretty lame as well, but not as bad as Panasonics position.

It has me, an avid MFT fan, that has invested thousands of dollars into the system, to hold my wallet to see what comes, regardless of new MFT or FF announcements from Panasonic. Because the R5 and R6 could potentially deliver everything I've have been waiting for in a mirrorless camera. IF I can basically have a camera with a LUMIX tech sheet AND unbeatable AF...sign me up.

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I'm stoked for it, but I think it could sink still based on as-yet-unreleased specs. How bad will the rolling shutter be, and how much will it cost? We've had to endure 8 bit and 1080p60 on Sony for all this time, the S1H is very close these days and now we're just starting to see the tech finally arrive for the next level of this class of camera. 

I'd love to live the 5DII innovation wave again - got my fingers crossed for this.
 

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I think Sony has been holding back the A7SIII waiting to see what Canon releases. I think if not for this R5, we would be seeing an incremental update from them.

Sony will have to do even better than the R5 spec wise to stop people from jumping ship and coming back to Sony as if its even level it won't stop a mass exodus.

I'm a current Sony user and have been for the last few years, but for 9 years prior to that was a Canon faithful. The only thing that can stop me from going back to Sony is their body prices. I don't NEED the R5 but i'm looking to buy one, the R6 may well suit my needs better as long as the joystick, dual card slots, EVF and battery remain, and If even the R6 price is ridiculous then I'll stick with my Sony A7III and add an A7RIV. Exciting times ahead 

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There's one huge question mark: This camera has a 45 MP sensor - which even with the best and newest technology means a smaller pixel pitch, lower full-well capacity and more noise/worse low light/less dynamic range than a comparable 24 MP sensor. 

Canon's sensor tech now has a long history of rather dramatically trailing Sony's. (Just compare the 26 MP full frame sensor performance of the relatively new Canon EOS RP with Sony's 24 MP full frame sensor.)

So Canon needs to have suddenly caught up or even leapfrogged Sony if the R5's sensor should have a comparable dynamic range and low-light capabilities to the A7iii, the Panasonic S1/S1H, the Nikon R6, the Panasonic S1/S1H and the Sigma fp (all of which use the same Sony sensor or variants thereof). 

In the worst case, this will be a camera developed for (a) stills photographers and (b) the (cancelled) Tokyo Olympics with its Japanese 8K broadcast standard, with 8K resolution and high megapixel count having been given priority over real-world performance. Which would also help Canon sell its C100/C200/C300 camera range despite all...

Just sayin'. We can't really tell anything before the camera will be here and tested in the real world.

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I don't think the camera needs to be that gimped to not sabotage their cine line. Most people simply wouldn't buy this camera over the C300-500 line because of the SLR type body, not to mention record limits. Not that people who own C300-500's won't also be buying this but I don't think it will take away from their cine line cameras. 

8K FF raw at this price point is awesome even if its a 5 minute record limit and poor at high ISO's. 
 

 

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5 minutes ago, thebrothersthre3 said:

8K FF raw at this price point is awesome even if its a 5 minute record limit and poor at high ISO's. 

Well, the R5 is positioned by Canon as the mirrorless equivalent of the 5D whose last model cost over 4000 $/Euro when it was introduced. So I'd expect a similar price for the R5. I personally wouldn't pay that much money for a camera with such limitations. But of course everyone has their own needs and opinion.

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22 minutes ago, rawshooter said:

Well, the R5 is positioned by Canon as the mirrorless equivalent of the 5D whose last model cost over 4000 $/Euro when it was introduced. So I'd expect a similar price for the R5. I personally wouldn't pay that much money for a camera with such limitations. But of course everyone has their own needs and opinion.

I wouldn't pay that much for a SLR type camera either, but I don't really do stills.

4-5 thousand US wouldn't be bad for those specs even with limitations. Where else can you get 8K? Zcam is releasing one soon at around the same price point, past that there is RED. Neither of those higher end cameras have the stills capability or auto focus. People will definitely get it at that price point, they've paid the same for less in the past. 

I'll stick to my X-T3 and the used URSA 4.6K I got for under 2 grand.

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52 minutes ago, thebrothersthre3 said:

Where else can you get 8K? 

The question is: Who actually needs 8K? Sports broadcasters, nature documentarists - maybe. 

I think @Andrew Reid wrote here some time ago that we already have enough (or even too much) resolution with today's cameras when filmic images are the goal.

Beyond that, you're rather getting problems because you see every pimple on the face of your protagonist, because you can no longer film hand-held (since motion blur will kill your 8K resolution - it already kills 4K), because your 8K will only be visible with deep focus/depth of field (since shallow depth of field will blur out 90% of your 8K).

So in order to make actual use of 8K, you'll easily end up shooting boring, static, oversharp and flat video images like in the bad old camcorder days...

There's a reason why Arri never went beyond 2.8K on the Alexa's s35 sensors and even kept the full frame sensor of the Alexa LF at 4.4K (much less than even the 6K/24 MP prosumer Sony full frame sensors)...

So of whom did Canon think as the target buyer for this camera? "Us", or some journalists who need a hybrid camera to deliver both hi-res stills and 8K video to their employers?

Again, I don't wanna spoil anyone's enthusiasm, but just temper expectations before we get to see and test the real thing.

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There must be a new processor that is coming with this. I would guess that it has been in design for a long time, and that is the main reason Canon have been lagging behind the last 4 or 5 years.

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28 minutes ago, rawshooter said:

The question is: Who actually needs 8K? Sports broadcasters, nature documentarists - maybe. 

I think @Andrew Reid wrote here some time ago that we already have enough (or even too much) resolution with today's cameras when filmic images are the goal.

Beyond that, you're rather getting problems because you see every pimple on the face of your protagonist, because you can no longer film hand-held (since motion blur will kill your 8K resolution - it already kills 4K), because your 8K will only be visible with deep focus/depth of field (since shallow depth of field will blur out 90% of your 8K).

So in order to make actual use of 8K, you'll easily end up shooting boring, static, oversharp and flat video images like in the bad old camcorder days...

There's a reason why Arri never went beyond 2.8K on the Alexa's s35 sensors and even kept the full frame sensor of the Alexa LF at 4.4K (much less than even the 6K/24 MP prosumer Sony full frame sensors)...

So of whom did Canon think as the target buyer for this camera? "Us", or some journalists who need a hybrid camera to deliver both hi-res stills and 8K video to their employers?

Again, I don't wanna spoil anyone's enthusiasm, but just temper expectations before we get to see and test the real thing.

The reason to use 8K, even if you are delivering in lower resolution formats, is that it allows you to minimize artifacts that come from a digital beyer sensor. Closer to true color, less aliasing, stuff like that (things you obviously don't care about). You can always reduce resolution in post, you cannot recover it.

And don't forget that 8K TV panels will be the norm in the mid to high end big screen TV market within a few years. Companies that make consumer products have to take that into consideration since people who buy these products will be expecting that their new camera can shoot for their new TV.

This argument comes up every time TV resolution increases. When 4K came out, most here were poopooing the idea of shooting in 4K, because "who wants it?". Well, the market spoke, and apparently the poopooers were wrong. Now, almost all mid to high end TV panels are 4K and a camera that can't shoot 4K is considered dead on arrival. The same thing will happen with 8K in a few years. Canon seems to be getting in first, but the rest will follow soon enough, assuming they don't get held up by having inadequate processors. Right now Sony is behind the curve in this respect (assuming Canon are not just blowing smoke), and after that Panasonic will need to upgrade their processors (they are in a bit better shape than Sony in that department). Nikon will probably be left out in the cold.

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1 hour ago, Mokara said:

The reason to use 8K, even if you are delivering in lower resolution formats, is that it allows you to minimize artifacts that come from a digital beyer sensor. Closer to true color, less aliasing, stuff like that (things you obviously don't care about). You can always reduce resolution in post, you cannot recover it.

And don't forget that 8K TV panels will be the norm in the mid to high end big screen TV market within a few years. Companies that make consumer products have to take that into consideration since people who buy these products will be expecting that their new camera can shoot for their new TV.

This argument comes up every time TV resolution increases. When 4K came out, most here were poopooing the idea of shooting in 4K, because "who wants it?". Well, the market spoke, and apparently the poopooers were wrong. Now, almost all mid to high end TV panels are 4K and a camera that can't shoot 4K is considered dead on arrival. The same thing will happen with 8K in a few years. 

For getting rid of the resolution loss caused by Bayer interpolation, you only need 144% more resolution on the sensor than in the final image. This is why Arri designed the original Alexa sensor with 2.8K resolution for 2K final delivery.

This conversely means that the Canon R5 won't deliver true 8K either - but actually "only" 5K optical resolution. For 4K delivery, 6K sensor resolution (i.e. the 24MP of the current, ubiquitous, run-of-the mill Sony full frame mirrorless camera sensor) is perfect.

Btw., still only very few films are mastered in 4K. What you mostly see in 4K cinemas are blow-ups from 2K. Even "Bad Boys for Life", the currently highest-grossing mainstream Hollywood blockbuster, was mastered in 2K and mostly shot with 2K cameras. And, believe it or not, even IMAX Digital projection is "only" 2K.

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Interesting theory. I said it in another thread, this is the first game changer we've seen in awhile - IMO not since the a7r2. Being a dominant market leader does mean they can play the long game better than anyone else, because incremental upgrades still keeps them flush with cash and not needing to play the spec game everyone else is to try and cut into their massive slice of the pie. Toyota does the same thing, people constantly blast them for not having tech that can compete with other brands, but they're consistently the best selling brand on earth. What I find most interesting is for years everyone has thought Canon's engineers are a bunch of buffoons and Sony was a couple generations ahead, when it turns out that's really not the case. I thought the same thing, but holy hell they just bitch slapped the entire industry. I don't really care, the R5 is great as it forces everyone else to up their game. 

Chris

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2 hours ago, Mokara said:

This argument comes up every time TV resolution increases. When 4K came out, most here were poopooing the idea of shooting in 4K, because "who wants it?". Well, the market spoke, and apparently the poopooers were wrong. Now, almost all mid to high end TV panels are 4K and a camera that can't shoot 4K is considered dead on arrival. 

Where I live cheap TV are all 4k, like 55" panels for $300. 4k is now the budget TV standard, even if its not the broadcast standard. The Costco I shop at is all 4k. But my first 1080p TV came in a 480i era, the consumer space moves much faster than the broadcast/Hollywood worlds.

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Marketing is the issue, 8K is an important badge for Canon trying to recover from years of ridicule and the perception they fell behind the cutting edge.

Let's forget for a moment that the practical uses for it are dubious and niche at best, and that the hardware for 8K exists in a Xiaomi smartphone, albeit with a much smaller sensor. Many seem surprised the EOS R5 doesn't set on fire and melt due to the data processing required for 8K but it has a much larger body than a smartphone to dissipate the heat and if a $999 smartphone can do it then a $4k+ large pro mirrorless really has no excuses.

4K/60p was a big step up in data-rate from 30p remember... Something Sony still hasn't achieved on their A7 series but Fuji and Panasonic have. The Canon 1D X Mark III 5.5K at 60p is also a big step up but 8K sounds like a bigger step up because resolution is always the headline and people forget about frame rate!

45MP by the way is a smart choice by Canon, something of a sweet spot for a full frame sensor, it is 8K horizontal resolution, it is Nikon D850 / Z7 and Fuji GFX 50S level horizontal resolution (the 50S has more resolution vertically though due to the 4:3 aspect ratio sensor). You have to go to 100MP to significantly see a difference past 45MP or 8K and that gets very pricey.

Sony have gone to 60MP, and actually the pixel binned 4K from the A7R IV is pretty nice. But it is only really a very incremental type step from their older 42MP sensor in the A7R II and III.

If you shoot 8K on the EOS R5 and downsample in post to 4K, yes it will be more detailed.

But not by much.

And when you view it as intended - on the big screen or in a cinema - the 2.8K Alexa will probably still beat it for the cinematic feel.

So yeah, let's not get too excited about 8K.

It is still impressive technology compared to what Canon were doing before though.

Personally, I would rather have the 1D X III sensor in there and 5K/60p RAW. Same data rate for the processor as 8K/30p remember.

I like that 4K/120p is in there but it is probably line-skipped.

You know, the big question mark with the EOS R5 is what the quality of the 4K/24p and 60p is going to be like.

Will it be oversampled from the 8K (full pixel readout) or will it be binned?

If it is binned then we are pegged with the A7R IV and Leica SL2 on 4K quality, more than likely, depending on the pixel binning method Canon uses.

So if you ignore the 8K, ignore the 4K/120p for slow-mo, and you just need 4K/60p, the EOS R5's real advantages over the competition like the Leica SL2 are:

  • 10bit codec at higher the frame rates in 4K (60p, 120p), not just at 4K 24p
  • Dual Pixel AF
  • That's about it

Still very useful though.

And the IBIS might be better, or it might be worse.

Personally, I am still going to wait to see what the R6 brings and I am in no rush to chuck my GFX 100 or Leica SL2 in the bin, after paying so much for them.

As for Sony A7R IV or A7 III users with mainly Canon lenses, yes, it is safe for you to go back to Canon now :)

As for Panasonic S1 and GH5 users, as well as Fuji X-T3 owners - it is more of a dilemma, and will depend on if you need the Dual Pixel AF, full frame 8K, 4K/120p and Canon LOG / Canon colour science on offer with the EOS R5. Let's not forget how much more the expected costs will be $4k body, expensive FF mirrorless lenses, expensive media. I don't think GH5 owners will rush over too soon. It definitely has AF over the S1, but again the 4K/24p from the S1 will probably be better looking, especially in low light.

So it all comes down to whether you need that 10bit codec at 120fps and have plenty of Canon lenses to make use of Dual Pixel AF.

Or are tired of 8bit on Sony cameras.

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3 hours ago, rawshooter said:

The question is: Who actually needs 8K? Sports broadcasters, nature documentarists - maybe. 

I think @Andrew Reid wrote here some time ago that we already have enough (or even too much) resolution with today's cameras when filmic images are the goal.

Beyond that, you're rather getting problems because you see every pimple on the face of your protagonist, because you can no longer film hand-held (since motion blur will kill your 8K resolution - it already kills 4K), because your 8K will only be visible with deep focus/depth of field (since shallow depth of field will blur out 90% of your 8K).

So in order to make actual use of 8K, you'll easily end up shooting boring, static, oversharp and flat video images like in the bad old camcorder days...

There's a reason why Arri never went beyond 2.8K on the Alexa's s35 sensors and even kept the full frame sensor of the Alexa LF at 4.4K (much less than even the 6K/24 MP prosumer Sony full frame sensors)...

Yes, I remember saying my experience of 4K in the cinema varied in enjoyment, to say the least. Being distracted by mesmerising detail sometimes doesn't do the actual story any favours. Making everything too real looking is not the goal of most cinema.

I just took delivery of a Sony native 4K cinema projector in my studio.

I am going to do some long-term watching experiments versus 2K.

Does 4K make for a more cinematic and entertaining watching experience?

We all know the image quality is quantifiable on a computer monitor or TV when we watch our stuff back. We all upgraded, very few of us would want to go back to 'mushy' and thin 1080p camera files!

But what is the experience like for the audience in the cinema?

And what does 8K look like projected at 4K?

Too sharp? Too much? Or not noticeable vs an Epson 1080p projector with 4K up-res / pixel shift? Should be interesting...

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6 hours ago, thebrothersthre3 said:

4-5 thousand US wouldn't be bad for those specs even with limitations. Where else can you get 8K? Zcam is releasing one soon at around the same price point, past that there is RED. Neither of those higher end cameras have the stills capability or auto focus. People will definitely get it at that price point, they've paid the same for less in the past. 

I'll stick to my X-T3 and the used URSA 4.6K I got for under 2 grand.


Z Cam E2-F8 is meant to be US$6K, thus if the Canon R6 is indeed sub $5K it would undercut even Z Cam! Quite impressive. Let's wait and see. 

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5 minutes ago, IronFilm said:


Z Cam E2-F8 is meant to be US$6K, thus if the Canon R6 is indeed sub $5K it would undercut even Z Cam! Quite impressive. Let's wait and see. 

Z cam has better media options for 8k and of course unlimited recording but yeah 

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One possible side-effect I'm really interested to look into with the arrival of an 8K RAW-shooting hybrid mirrorless camera on the market is how it impacts the prices of various popular vintage lenses. With Canon moving away from the EF mount to the RF mount, I have to imagine that opens up the possibility of video shooters adapting some terrific old glass that previously wasn't very useable for EF-mount cameras (such as Canon FD's or Minolta MC Rokkor's). Will that raise the prices of some great, less pricey alternatives to the Contax Zeiss and Leica R's of the world? 

Either way, I have to imagine that we'll see continued use of older SLR-era lenses being adapted to help 'soften' the image of these higher resolution cameras. 

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