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Canon offers some clarity on DSLR production
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Canon offers some clarity on DSLR production

In the Q&A session of the quarterly financials, Canon was asked about the current market and also their plans for single lens reflex cameras.  In the past Canon has stated that they will continue to manufacture SLR cameras for the foreseeable future, however, Nikkei Asia reported earlier this month that Canon has plans to discontinue all production of DSLRs in a few year’s time.

Canon was asked;

Q: What is your outlook for the camera market going forward? Additionally, will you continue to offer both Mirrorless and DSLR cameras?

A: The camera market has largely bottomed out at its current size. Going forward, we expect the professional and advanced amateur segment to expand further and that products will become more highly developed. Accordingly, we expect the overall market to grow from now on. As for DSLR cameras, we will continue to supply products as long as there is demand.

This is largely consistent with the way Canon operates. When you control over 50% of the entire camera market, you don’t stop producing cameras or even camera lines on a whim. As long as people are purchasing the cameras, they will continue to manufacture them.  This includes both DSLRs and also EOS-M cameras. 

Counter to this we have seen Canon fairly quickly discontinue large swaths of DSLR lenses.  This would lead credence to reports that even though Canon is saying we’ll continue to make DSLR they don’t really expect to do so for a very long time.  Also, don’t expect Canon’s large ecosystem to be readily available for you to use those cameras.  More and more, they’ll simply offer rebel DSLRs as Canon wants everyone prosumer and above to be on the EOS R system.

Should you purchase a DSLR or EOSM camera going forward? Both DSLRs and EOSM can be purchased cheaply and give you many years of photography without worrying about future equipment. In the future, if you decide to migrate to the EOS-R system, what you can take with you is dramatically different between the two systems. With DSLRs you can still use your EF-S or EF lenses on an EOS-R camera.  With the EOS-M you have to be prepared to assume that it's simply a sunk cost.  What you buy, you'll either end up selling on ebay or keeping as a spare camera system. None of your lenses will work on the EOS-R system if you decide to migrate in the future.

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