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APS-C EOS R on the horizon?
A recent rumor suggests that an EOS R with an APS-C mount is on the horizon.
Canon Rumors suggests;
We’ve now been told by a couple of people that an EOS R camera is currently being tested with an APS-C image sensor. One of the sources told us that they don’t know if it will become a consumer product, but that there is some internal discussion about what to do with the EOS M line of cameras and lenses.
As we mentioned, Canon's use of the RF mount being dramatically different from the EOS-M mount causes problems. We see two possibilities that Canon may explore with respects to the RF mount;
- That they indeed come up with an APS-C version of the EOS R, similar in feature set to the 80D and 7D series APS-C camera bodies
- That APS-C is left at EOS-M and EF-S until mirrorless full frame takes over enough of the market, then for APS-C you have the EOS-M and for full frame you have EOS-RF.
Personally, I feel that the later makes the most sense. Over time, with faster readout speeds and intelligent in-camera cropping, and cheaper sensors, the need for APS-C cameras is significantly reduced. Since Canon makes their own sensors, the economies of scale match well in their favor to come out with cheaper and cheaper full frame cameras. This is especially true when you consider that the entire EOS R sans EVF assembly can be mass assembled using robotics. Even today, we see the 6D Mark II selling for $1600 USD, making the possibility of even a cheaper EOS R camera quite possible. With increasing pixel density, faster readout speeds, and image processing pipelines, Canon can make a full frame EOS R like what the D850 is for Nikon, a capable crop and full frame camera in one camera body. Thus, the need for a fast sports APS-C camera will also diminish over time. Right now, a 60MP full-frame EOS R capable of 10FPS sounds like wishful fantasy, but this is not so different than what a D850 brings to Nikon already. For Canon to sooner than later match their competition, the need for an APS-C version of an EOS R camera will be marginalized.
Getting rid of the EOS M system right now would be problematic for Canon. It has been a huge success in Asia, contrary to popular belief in the rest of the world, especially the Americas were it has had limited success. Even though the system is small in both size and scope, it's a competent system. Complicating those plans is the release of a 32mm 1.4 STM for the EF-M mount, making it the fastest lens on both EF-M and EF-S mounts. Canon would then have to develop EOS RF-S lenses or re-create the EF-M lenses to the RF mount for an APS-C camera. Simply releasing a camera body with no specific APS-C lenses would be a difficult sell. If you are going to force people to use EF-S lenses and an adapter, then why bother with an EOS R APS-C camera at all? Also, simply ridding themselves of the EOS-M would be a huge publicity loss for the company.
Given how tightly Canon held onto the specifications and plans of the EOS R, it would surprise me greatly if this information was leaked early in the lifecycle. Odds are we won't know until close to the time in which Canon chooses to release. One thing is for certain, the next couple of years will be very interesting.
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