When the Canon 1D X Mark III was introduced two years ago, the video world was amazed at the abundance of compelling features for filmmakers - it offers, among other things, a natively readable 5.5K FullFrame sensor with internal RAW recording as well as 4K oversampling recording of the full sensor area with up to 60p in 10-bit 4:2:2, plus C-Log and Dual Pixel AF up to 30p. In our tests, it cut a suitably brilliant figure, apart from some unnecessary weaknesses in rolling shutter behavior.
Canon EOS 1D X Mark III
Now it has been announced that Canon will no longer develop a new professional EOS-1 - in an interview, Canon's CEO Fujio Mitarai explained that the market is increasingly oriented towards mirrorless cameras and that the development and production of digital SLR flagship models will therefore be scaled back.
The news has been spreading like wildfire through the Internet ever since, though occasionally another piece of information from the interview is dropped, namely that there could in principle be more new DSLRs from Canon in other segments, because: "Demand for entry-level and advanced SLR cameras is strong overseas, so we plan to continue development and production for the time being," Mitarai continued.
So this is not Canon's final and immediate withdrawal from the DSLR market, especially since the 1D X Mark III will certainly remain in the lineup for a few more years. At the same time, the focus towards mirrorless is anything but surprising. In fact, we had already suspected at the time that the 1D X Mark III would be the last DSLR model from this pro series which would explain why Canon had unlocked a lot of future-ready video features.
As for camera sales, October 2019 was the first time that more mirrorless system cameras than DSLRs were shipped worldwide. However, there are major regional differences on this point: In Asia, interest in mirrorless system cameras is generally greater, while in Europe and especially in the Americas (North + South), DSLR sales still predominated in unit terms at that time, as well as in 2020 (the final CIPA statistics for 2021 have not yet been published). The achieved sales with DSLRs, however, are lower in these markets too than with mirrorless cameras.
If we look into the future, it seems quite likely that we will also see Canon's mirrorless flagship - probably a Canon EOS R1 - in 2022. Nikon with the Z9 and Sony with the A1 have flagship cameras with a higher pixel count (than the Canon EOS R3) in the race, which is definitely of interest for photographers. Accordingly, we consider a Canon EOS R1 with a sensor beyond 40 MP to be obvious. In terms of video specs, the Nikon Z9 is currently the most technically feasible, which means that internal 8K 60p RAW recording and a purely electronic shutter should be a given for the upcoming mirrorless Canon EOS R1. An exciting year lies ahead of us in any case...