August 27, 2015

Canon's 24 Megapixel EOS M3 Mirrorless Camera is Coming to the US

Canon EOS M3 Front Angled
Canon's newest APS-C mirrorless camera, the EOS M3, is finally coming to the United States.

After originally being announced earlier this year for elsewhere in the world, the company's latest stab at the mirrorless market is going to come to the US in early October 2015. While they've had some false starts in terms of trying to match what companies like Panasonic, Sony, and Olympus are doing, the new $680 M3 is at the very least a better camera than their earlier offerings — though it's certainly not going to blow anyone away. They also announced a few new mirrorless lenses, the EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM ($400), EF-M 22mm f/2 STM ($250), and EF-M 55-200mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM ($350).

Here's B&H with all of the Canon announcements from the day:

Some clips from Canon with a making-of:

And the specs for the M3, which will come in a few different packages:

  • 24.2MP APS-C CMOS Sensor (6000 x 4000)
  • DIGIC 6 Image Processor
  • 3.0" 1,040k-Dot Touchscreen Tilting LCD
  • 1920 x 1080: 24 fps, 25 fps, 30 fps
  • 1280 x 720: 60 fps, 50 fps
  • 640 x 480: 30 fps, 25 fps
  • Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity with NFC
  • Hybrid CMOS AF System with 49 AF Points
  • ISO 100-12800, Expandable to 25600
  • Hot Shoe and Built-In Flash
  • 3.5mm Stereo Mic Input
  • Full Manual Control
  • Availability: October 2015
  • Price: $680 Body Only, $800 with 18-55, $1,050 with 18-55 and 55-200

This is likely the same sensor being used in the Canon T6s and T6i cameras, so don't expect video image quality to be very different from those consumer models. Canon is still taking the cautious approach when it comes to mirrorless, which is kind of strange considering they are getting killed in this market by companies like Sony, who have been making full-frame mirrorless cameras for a while now, not to mention APS-C models for longer.

The other issue is that Canon doesn't have a wide range of small, mirrorless lenses for the EF-M mount. Yes you can adapt full-size EF lenses to the camera, but it starts to defeat the purpose of having a small camera when the lens weighs twice as much as the body. Other manufacturers like Panasonic are certainly taking notice, especially as they've been doubling down on mirrorless cameras and lenses for years:

Either way this is a step up from their previous models — hopefully we see something with 4K and/or higher frame rates at some point. This lens mount would be great for adapting all sorts of lenses to a real cinema camera in a small body, but I'm doubting we will see a product from the company like that anytime soon. The market is there for Canon if they want to produce a truly high-end mirrorless camera.

Canon EOS M3 Back
Canon EOS M3 Top

Your Comment

12 Comments

$680 and no 1920 x 1080 60p and no UHD 24p, meh...

August 27, 2015 at 5:42PM, Edited August 27, 5:42PM

11
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Tommy Rodriguez
Filmmaker, educator
175

It doesn't have these features because it is marketed as a consumer device although aimed at those with more money than sense who wish to correct that imbalance.

August 28, 2015 at 6:43AM

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Julian Richards
Film Warlord
1333

Tommy is right. A lot of money for not a lot of camera. A slight improvement on the EOS-M, for which I paid £100 for a second body+ charger +accessories. I've seen the M3 in a local camera shop. Faster focusing (which I don't use anyhow) and some of the controls are on dials rather than buried in on screen menus, which might be a useful addition.

I don't get the EF-M lenses. There are not that many of them (although I got a pair of 22mms from China for £50 each). Would an EF-S mount really have made the EOS-M so huge?

August 27, 2015 at 5:55PM, Edited August 27, 5:55PM

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Julian Richards
Film Warlord
1333

Regular EF mount needs to be farther from the sensor than EF-M. So if you take a look at the EOS M with the EF adapter, that's how big it would need to be, or at least that's how far forward the lens mount would protrude. At that point you might as well just put it in a full-size DSLR body.

August 27, 2015 at 6:03PM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

Not convinced by this argument, although I don't have the EF adapter. It's a 26mm difference. I have M42, M39, OM and Minolta adapters and they are very useful. There's more to having one of these cameras than just going as small as possible.

August 27, 2015 at 6:53PM

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Julian Richards
Film Warlord
1333

I use the adapter on my M, and it basically doubles the depth of the body. It's a pretty considerable difference.

August 28, 2015 at 11:30PM

7
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As far as I know the whole lens can be smaller and lighter because of the shorter flange focal distance.
DSLR lenses always have to be bigger and heavier because the mirror system in the camera gives them an unnaturally long flange distance.
So yes, a system/mount for non-DSLR lenses absolutely makes sense.

September 3, 2015 at 9:50PM

5
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I can't be the only one finding this camera incredibly boring.

August 27, 2015 at 6:08PM

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Charles Duoto
Studio Floor Director
1465

I agree with you completely. It's boring because it doesn't really bring anything new, at least for video. The faster autofocus is irrelevent if you use manual focus. The interesting thing is that with the EOS-M in its original form going for a song on the second hand market, it's putting an interchangeable lens camera in the hands of people who might not otherwise afford a camera with such specs. Its ability to use lens adapters because of its mirrorless design means that a set of reasonable primes can be put together for little cost (old FDs, OMs, Super Takumars, Soviet lenses etc). Stick this with DaVinci Resolve 12 for free and we have a more democratised film production. There are kids out there full of ideas (many of them awful, I must admit) who could produce great movies. The extra element is the ability to communicate with people online like those on this site to help guide them.

August 27, 2015 at 7:08PM

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Julian Richards
Film Warlord
1333

I had the original EOS-M with the Canon 5D. I found I always had the EOS-M with the 22mm somewhere in my bag or in a jacket while the 5D stayed at home most of the time. I love the pictures taken with it, for a camera bought when it was discounted at $300 by Canon.

I sold it with regret when I switched to Sony system. I still remember the fun times.

Sadly, better autofocus won't make me go back to Sony EOS-M. $700 (plus a few hundreds to get the 22mm and the EVF) is a steep price to pay Canon

August 28, 2015 at 11:23AM

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Heri Rakotomalala
DP/Camera, Studio owner, Associate Producer
306

The Sony a6000 yet older is a great little camera and uses the E-Mount lenses that the NEX cameras use. I would be hard pressed to add this one to my bag for the specs it delivers. I wish Canon would just push harder in specs already but hey! they added a 3.5mm Stereo Mic Input.

August 28, 2015 at 4:10PM, Edited August 28, 4:13PM

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Erik Naso
eriknaso.com
261

Why is this here?

August 30, 2015 at 12:12AM, Edited August 30, 12:12AM

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Vidrazor
641