There is no doubt that if cutting edge camera tech is your thing, then Canon’s EOS R3 would most likely take the prize for currently being at the pinnacle of achievement.
Today Canon announced final details of this ‘wonder kid’ to follow the publicity it has already had.
For my own part, I look at this from two different perspectives.
If I put on my ‘technical’ hat when you look at the AF features alongside the cameras high capture rate, multi pattern metering and the rest, you can not from a ‘technical’ perspective fail to be impressed. And for the sports and press shooters who the camera is targeted at, plus I think, you could add wildlife photographers, it is on paper at least quite compelling. Afterall, getting the shot that can not be repeated is all about just that.
But my mind also goes to some of the fine sports photographers who in my time, started with manual focus, then moved to use AF systems as they developed. Just off the top of my head; Chris & Dan Smith, Frank Coppi, Amon McCabe, Eddie Keogh and Bob Martin too name just some who may resonate. Sadly, some no longer with us, but others are still shooting professionally. How much easier is it now to be for example a sports shooter compared to when they manually focused, used manual exposure, sometimes with a hand held meter, all as a standard shooting practice?
Which brings me to my other hat, that as a professional photographer in my own right. Not my genre sports, so I will not say I would not go with the obvious high tech to nail the unique images. But providing you get accreditation, can purchase, borrow or hire kit, are we not in danger of having photographers who are not anywhere near the skill set of pro shooters of previous generations? Set up your auto options via menus, then hold that button down for a previously unimaginable capture rate.
This seems to be happening increasingly across many genres of professional and enthusiast photography. So are we not in the strange situation of having the best cameras we have ever had as I have often say, but fewer real photographers behind them? Fully versed in their craft, which only comes from time, understanding and practise. And yes making mistakes.
Auto tech bypasses that to a significant degree, and the picture taker looses out on the pride of accumulating and developing skills.
Photography is fun, rewarding and a wonderful thing to do. But is that not the point? It is when ‘you’ do it? In genres where it is not all about a fleeting one off moment let us not devalue real photographers and the skills that come with that?
But take nothing away from this remarkable sounding camera for it’s technical achievements. And I could have made these comments with other names instead of Canon.
Below are the details Canon have today released.
The wait is over – Canon’s new sports hero is here to outpace and outperform
London, United Kingdom, 14th September 2021 – Canon Europe today announces the highly anticipated EOS R3 – a powerhouse for sports photography and reportage. Blending tradition with cutting edge technology, the EOS R3 offers all the familiarity and speed of Canon’s renowned EOS-1 series, with the innovation and versatility of the pioneering EOS R System.
Designed using feedback from the most demanding professional press and sports photographers, the EOS R3 features over 100 improvements upon Canon’s mirrorless and DSLR models. The result is a camera which dramatically streamlines workflows and takes the connection between camera and photographer to new levels, for unbeatable speed and responsiveness. With a brand new, innovative 24.1 megapixel sensor, the EOS R3 gives the optimal balance of performance, resolution and speed to offer news and sports photographers a camera to outperform and outpace the competition.
The future is fast
Leveraging the ground-breaking new 24.1 megapixel backside illuminated stacked CMOS sensor, the EOS R3 offers lightning fast image capture and enhanced responsiveness. The powerful sensor almost entirely eliminates rolling shutter distortion and with a rapid shutter speed, offering a range of 30 seconds to 1/64000th of a second[i], it helps sports photographers freeze the fastest of subjects. When using the electronic shutter, photographers can shoot up to 30fps with AE and AF tracking even when shooting RAW files, as well as options for shooting at 15fps and 3fps. The electronic shutter can also be used with both Canon and third-party flashes for the first time. Removing the traditional weaknesses of electronic shutters, Canon has introduced Flicker detection and a High Frequency anti-flicker shooting mode to detect and correct flickering light sources and prevent banding or colour and exposure issues.
The EOS R3’s high speed performance does not stop at the frames per second, it extends to the focusing as well. Capable of focusing in 0.03 seconds, the EOS R3 is the fastest EOS R series camera yet[ii] – perfect for capturing the unpredictable action of sport and reportage. Powered by Dual Pixel CMOS AF II, the EOS R3 features an improved Deep Learning algorithm, offering AF tracking including human and animal eye, body, and face detection as well as head detection for humans in both stills and videos. Designed with motorsports photographers in mind, Canon has also introduced a vehicle tracking function, to expertly track motorbikes, open cockpit Formula cars as well as GT and rally cars – with the ability to prioritise the vehicle or the driver’s helmet. Eye, face, head and body detection are now available in all AF modes, as well as a new Flexible Zone allowing users to select the size and shape of the Zone AF area. The EOS R3 sets a new standard for its ability to focus in lighting conditions as low as -7.5 EV[iii] – making this one of the most capable low light cameras available.
To maximise control over all these AF options the EOS R3 offers three different ways to select the AF points: the quick smart controller, the precise multi controller and the instinctive Eye Control AF. Eye control AF provides a more natural connection between the camera and the photographer. This intuitive and pioneering AF point selection method moves the focus point to where the photographer looks. In situations where the story can quickly unfold, this allows photographers to instinctively focus on the action with just a look.
Enhancing the ability for handheld shooting and steady movie production on the move, the 5-axis In-Body Image Stabilizer can combine with optical Image Stabilizer in selected RF lenses and offers industry-leading performance with up to 8-stops.
Outpace your peers
For professional photographers shooting in the field, it’s not just about the speed of capturing a moment but also the speed of getting it to the news desks and editors that matters. With a number of professional connectivity options including built in version 5.0 Bluetooth and 5 GHz[iv] Wi-Fi, the EOS R3 streamlines workflows and simplifies the connection to a smartphone or Wi-Fi network. Ideal for sport arenas, the built in Gigabit Ethernet port enables a high speed wired connection. And, for when speed really matters, photographers can transmit images to clients via FTP. For existing EOS R5[v] and EOS-1D X Mark III users, network settings can be shared between the three cameras.
Users can remotely control the camera from a mobile device using the Canon’s Camera Connect App or using the Browser Remote function via an ethernet connection. A popular feature from the EOS-1D X Mark III, the Browser Remote function also enables users and head offices to remotely change metadata, browse and download images. Users will also be able to use Canon’s Mobile File Transfer (MFT) app[vi] – a mobile application for professional photographers that transfers images over a mobile device to an FTP/FTPS/SFTP server. Future enhancements of the app will include text conversion of voice memo, enhancing ease of use for professionals. A new smartphone holder accessory for the EOS R3, the Smartphone Link AD-P1, allows users to mount their iOS or Android device on top of the Multi-Function Shoe Adapter and easily transmit images via the new MFT app[vii]. The Canon Camera Connect app now enables the EOS R3 firmware to be updated via your phone – a first for an EOS camera.
Incredible video capabilities
As with the EOS R5, the EOS R3 takes Canon’s hybrid offering to the next level – meeting the demand for photographers to capture the action in both high-quality stills, and impressive high-resolution video. It offers powerful video capability, capturing 6K 60p RAW resolution footage, which offers 50 per cent more detail than 4K. With 6K CRM RAW files, exposure and white balance can be corrected post capture to ensure stunning image reproduction. 4K footage up to 60p is oversampled from 6K guaranteeing the highest possible 4K movie quality. Great for high speed and dynamic sports, the EOS R3 captures 4K 120p footage for stunning 4K resolution slow motion. It’s now possible to record up to six hours of regular video or 1.5 hours at high 119.88/100p frame rates[viii].
At its core, the EOS R3 is designed to help photographers outpace their competitors – and the same is true for video. To reduce the file size and speed up video workflows, CRM light or MP4 footage can be recorded in All-I, IPB or the smaller IPB light option, allowing users to select from a range of bit rates to meet their needs and storage requirements. Dual card slots, including a UHS-II SD card slot and the ultra-high speed CFexpress make shooting 6K RAW video possible and support simultaneous recording to both cards in MP4[ix], providing a fail-safe back up of vital footage. Canon’s renowned Canon LOG 3 enables 10-bit internal recording, to achieve a greater dynamic range or 10bit HDR PQ which minimises the need for editing or grading footage in post-production. Excellent for roving reporters, the EOS R3 features Canon’s new Multi-Function Shoe and is compatible with the newly launched Directional Stereo Microphone DM-E1D – a camera-powered directional stereo microphone using digital processing – and the TEAC Tascam CA-XLR2d-CXLR adapter which enables two channel recording with professional XLR microphones.
Instinctive shooting experience
Offering all the speed and familiarity of the EOS-1 series, Canon’s latest mirrorless employs a new Canon developed blackout-free, high-quality 5.76 million dot electronic viewfinder with low lag and refresh rate of up to 120 fps at full resolution for a viewing experience that rivals an optical viewfinder. Along with the newly introduced OVF simulation View Assist, the viewfinder offers richer tones and greater dynamic range. The shutter lag can be reduced to an astonishing 20ms – less than half that of a conventional camera, for near instant capture when the shutter release is pressed. The new high resolution Vari-Angle 4.1-million dot touch screen provides more detail than ever before and offers greater flexibility of shooting angles thanks to its ability to tilt and rotate into a range of positions. Combining existing EOS ergonomics with new controls and a number of new customisation options for users, including shutter sounds with volume control, the EOS R3 provides familiar, yet advanced control. To save time when moving between camera bodies, photographers can easily copy and save personalised settings to memory cards. Using the same LP-E19 battery as the EOS-1D X Mark II and EOS-1D X Mark III, the EOS R3 enables extended shooting and greater compatibility with existing DSLRs.
The EOS R3 employs a new lightweight, dust and water-resistant magnesium body for use in harsh conditions. Weather resistance can be also maintained when using existing Speedlites, by connecting them to the newly announced Multi-Function Shoe Adapter AD-E1. The EOS R3 also powers the new, compact Speedlite Transmitter ST-E10 through the Multi-Function Shoe, which gives photographers the ability to remotely control multiple radio Speedlites.
The EOS R3 is an ultra-fast, highly responsive camera that gives sports and news photographers the competitive advantage they need to get the winning shot.
EOS R3 Key Features:
- New Canon-developed 24.1 megapixel back illuminated stacked CMOS sensor
- 30fps with AF/AE tracking
- Shutter speed offering a range of 30 seconds to 1/64000 of a second when using the electronic shutter
- Eye Control AF point selection
- AF tracking of people, animals (including birds) and motorsports (racing motorbikes and racing cars)
- Full width 6K 60p RAW video recorded internally to a CFexpress card
- Focus in light levels as low as –7.5 EV