WTF Canon? 6D Mark II is Finally Here—Without 4K

Canon 6D
After a flurry of rumors, Canon has finally updated its 6D to the 6D Mark II, but somehow 4K video is left out.

The 6D is Canon's cost effective entry into the world of full frame cinematography, and has been a popular little brother to the 5D since its introduction back in 2012. There has been a lot of excitement over the upcoming release of the Canon 6D Mark II, as but we noted in our rumor post a week ago, 4K wasn't one of the expected features, and now that the final specs have been announced, it's officially...not there. Just 1080p 60. In a camera that is almost $2000. In 2017. Really.

Credit: Canon
While some photographers are excited at the upgrade, most filmmakers will find this falls flat. Yes, we still consume the vast majority of our content at 1080p, but 4K release is growing (Netflix requires delivery in 4K), and 4K capture is practically standard at the moment. In addition, a camera purchase is always a long term investment meant to pay itself off over many years, and there just isn't enough of a future in 1080 to make this a worthwhile investment for most filmmakers. If you are just starting out, an XT2 or a GH5 makes more sense. If you desperately need a full frame sensor for extensive low light work, a 5D Mark IV, or even the still popular Mark III, isn't that much of an upgrade price wise. 
Credit: Canon

The big upgrades are a swivel screen, image stabilization, and dual pixel auto focus. Dual pixel, a technology that many love, hasn't come in such an affordable package before, which will excite photographers. However, filmmakers, who still tend to manually focus more often, aren't necessarily dying for the feature. The swivel screen is a nice addition, but it's also something that pretty much all the major competitors have already, and many, many filmmakers are attaching external monitors for a larger image and extreme articulation, so the feature isn't likely to be a strong draw. With 4K monitors coming in at under $200, it feels like most filmmakers will end up heading towards 4K cameras. While image stabilization might be nice, the post stools are so strong in that arena that it would be better to just shoot 4K and refine in post.

Credit: Canon

Unfortunately, this feels like an upgrade for the photographers only. Canon has made it clear that they feel like filmmakers should go for the C line and that these cameras are aimed at the still market, and this release makes it clear that nothing has changed.

Available now from B&H body only for $1999.

Tech Specs:

  • 26.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
  • DIGIC 7 Image Processor
  • 45-Point All-Cross Type AF System
  • Full HD Video at 60 fps; Digital IS
  • 3" 1.04m-Dot Vari-Angle Touchscreen LCD
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF and Movie Servo AF
  • Native ISO 40000, Expanded to ISO 102400
  • 6.5 fps Shooting; Time-Lapse & HDR Movie
  • Built-In GPS, Bluetooth & Wi-Fi with NFC
  • Dust and Water Resistant; SD Card Slot 

Your Comment

28 Comments

The only justification I can imagine is that Canon wants its users to keep their cash going towards their cinema line up for video.

June 29, 2017 at 8:05AM

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Ben McGinley
Producer / Shooter / Editor
274

This is the only logical explanation.

June 29, 2017 at 9:06AM

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Chris Kas
Jack of all trades
439

4K is hardly the strandard yet. Of the 200 or so projects we delivered in the past year, only about 15 were filmed in 4K - and all of those were delivered in 1080p. Expecting a professional 4K camera for under $2000 is a little bit ridiculous - give it 3-5 years.

Remember that up until basically 2 years ago most prosumer cameras topped out at 720p60.

June 29, 2017 at 8:13AM, Edited June 29, 8:13AM

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Mark Austin Heim
Producer
92

Huh? 4k is certainly the standard for all video cameras now.

June 29, 2017 at 8:32AM

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Lane McCall
Producer/Director
488

Respectfully disagree. 4k is standard on pro-sumer cameras now. Heck its even standard on high end smart phones. All the major camera manufactures have this in sub $2000 cameras (sony, Nikon, Panasonic, Olympus) why doesn't Canon? Its an intentional crippling of the product line.

June 29, 2017 at 8:48AM

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That's not even the point... How is Canon gonna make these lame moves when for the SAME $2000, you can buy a camera like GH5 with 4K 60fps, 1080p 180fps, 10 bit internal, IBIS, and much more. It's a damn joke.

As far as the whole 4K standard goes... Just check your iPhone.

June 29, 2017 at 9:01AM

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John D. Kim
Director & Editor
188

"Expecting a professional 4K camera for under $2000 is a little bit ridiculous "

Uh, I got my Gh4 two years ago for $1,400...

4K is unequivocally the standard for prosumer cameras. No question. I don't deliver in 4K either but 4K still benefits my editing greatly.

June 29, 2017 at 4:18PM, Edited June 29, 4:26PM

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Daniel King
Videographer, Editor
302

Ain't nobody buying this crap for TWO THOUSAND MF dollars...
We in 2017 Canon.

June 29, 2017 at 8:48AM

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John D. Kim
Director & Editor
188

Native ISO 40000? Really?

June 29, 2017 at 9:03AM

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Come on No Film School. I expect more out of you than an article that reads like it's pulled from the comments. I'm sure 4K is a deal breaker for some but it's not a camera without a purpose. As a live event shooter I can't think of another camera that 1) is full frame 2) has built in 5 axis IS 3) has the insanely accurate Dual Pixel AF 4) has a swivel touch screen 5) has a battery that gets me through several hours. These 5 features are all way more important to me than 4K and make it an ideal camera for what I do.

June 29, 2017 at 10:14AM, Edited June 29, 10:19AM

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Does it really has IBIS 5 axis??? Why B&H specs. page says: "Image Stabilization Digital, 5-Way"... Is it the sensor that moves? or is it the portion of the sensor used for videos what moves?? i think it might be scam-ish to say "built in 5 axis IS" if it´s electronic and no one knows how it will perform. At least for now...

June 29, 2017 at 11:56AM

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Rafa Ga
Digital Film-Video Editor / Colorist / Motion Graphics
371

First, please get rid of the floating share bar (to use the nice term for it). It takes up a lot of real estate on my phone screen....
What are the details of the 1080 specs? Codec, bit depth, external out?

June 29, 2017 at 10:16AM

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Jeff Baker
Associate director new media
81

I don't know about the 1080 specs but from what I've read it does not have clean external out which is F'ing ridiculous in this day and age.

June 29, 2017 at 11:23AM

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I agree that it's truly a bummer there's no 4K, that could have been fun. But... no matter how much everyone complains, Canon is still going to sell a s*** load of these cameras and they know it. These are obviously geared towards photographers and that's ok, they are great photo cameras! My old 6D's had great images, but crappy focus and Canon addressed that big time with the Mark ii.
At this point I think it's on you if you're still surprised/upset at Canons video specs on their DSLR's, they know what they're doing and who they are marketing to. If you want cheap 4K cameras because (fill in the blank), Sony and Panasonic will happily take your business:)

June 29, 2017 at 10:19AM, Edited June 29, 10:19AM

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John D. Smith
Cinematographer
344

"Filmmakers" are still using DSLR's to shoot video? In 2017? Really? WTF.

June 29, 2017 at 10:34AM

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Casey Preston
Videographer
447

Every person who doesn't want to pay for a Varicam or a Red.
GH5 kills every under-$10,0000 video camera on the market.
Not sure what high-school kids are using. Let us know.

June 30, 2017 at 7:18AM

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Based on youtube, most teenagers seem to be using cellphones to capture video. Does that help you out?

Also, the GH5 is a much better tool for shooting video in decent light than the 6D.

June 30, 2017 at 11:34AM, Edited June 30, 11:42AM

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Casey Preston
Videographer
447

Honestly, I can forgive the lack of 4K because let's face it: if Canon added 4K to the 6D II it would be the same hampered 4K in the 5D IV (Massive crop, bloated file format) and that would piss people off just as much as not having 4K at all so whatever.

What upsets me about this camera is the lack of a headphone jack and no Clean HDMI out!

If someone had the 80D because of its still and video capabilities and wanted to upgrade to full frame, why would they buy this?

Why would they spend more money to lose a very important feature??

And no clean HDMI out?? WTF!? Canon gives this thing a UHS-1 card slot but doesn't give it the ability to out put a clean signal via HDMI, forcing users to deal with over heating memory cards and record limits?

What camera are they protecting by leaving those two things out?

I've avoided going to Sony because I've been a Canon shooter since I've learned how to use a DSLR but I am a hybrid shooter and I do as much video as stills and I need something that can do both on a somewhat professional level.

Sony may have their problems but at least they're trying to provide that. Canon just seems really disinterested in the concept.

June 29, 2017 at 11:22AM

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Didnt even notice the lack of headphone jack, thats definitely embarassing seeing as they have it implemented in many other cameras. And the body size grew from the 6D, so its not like it was space saving.

Im guessing they think that the market that wants those features, but not a dedicated cine cam like a C200, is small enough they can piss them off. In the meantime, Ill be using my a7r because its better for stills, and my GH4 because it does video. Thought the 6dII would be how Id go back to Canon, but, if anything I see myself moving all Sony once they fill out their lens line in another year or two.

June 30, 2017 at 1:00PM

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Sounds to me like Canon is simply focusing (no pun intended) its markets. The D line is going to be targeted strictly toward still photographers, who perhaps do a bit of video from time to time. Very little R&D is going to go into the video end of things. Filmmakers should consider the C line instead, especially with the C200 hitting the market.

This is probably better than a half-assed 4K implementation (I'm looking at you, Sony alpha line).

June 29, 2017 at 1:53PM

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Christopher Kou
Production Manager
242

And Canon continues to just give their business to Panasonic and Sony. Seriously, why would anyone ever buy a Canon for video at this point? Just buy a GH5 for the same price and get 4K at 60fps, 10-bit recording, sensor stabilization, the works. If you NEED the full-frame sensor, get an A7sII.

4K is standard for any prosumer camera. Period. Heck, it's standard for PHONES at this point.

June 29, 2017 at 4:24PM

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Daniel King
Videographer, Editor
302

"I don't know ANYONE that shoots anything serious on a 6D."

Thats kind of the point. The 6D was a joke for video, largely because of the codec, which made even the 1080 it had pretty useless. There was a chance to bring the 6DII out, 5 years later, as something more. Instead they seem to be using a very similar codec and just added 60fps. Not exactly progress.

June 30, 2017 at 1:03PM

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Well, now lets see what numbers will tell us about sales of... this.

June 29, 2017 at 7:23PM, Edited June 29, 7:23PM

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That's a surprise. I thought that 4k is the standard now. This could be a huge mistake by Cannon.

June 30, 2017 at 1:47AM

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Lisa
74

I have to say, the level of outrage and sheer out-sized "I'm an authority on this subject" attitude in the comment section is pretty entertaining. You might think after reading this thread it's populated by nothing but veteran DPs and camera operators, all just one step away from being inducted into the ASC! Dial down some of that chest puffing guys; it's not going to get you anywhere. Plus, if you ARE a busy pro, then $2k is not a lot of money to spend. If anything, this price puts it into the "second or third camera" category.

Though "photographic" video is not the bulk of my business, what I output (whether video, animation or motion graphics) is in video format, and not one client has asked for 4k output yet. This includes a couple of Fortune 500 customers. So Netflix is asking for 4k output? Great, but is anyone here currently on one of those projects? You know when 4k will TRULY matter? When your parents (and all their friends) have a 4K TV.

June 30, 2017 at 2:39PM

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Douglas Bowker
Animation, Video, Motion-Graphics
356

Veteran DP's couldn't care less about a low level Canon camera, its us beginners and intermediate cinematographers/videographers/cam op's who depend on companies to release cameras that we can afford and will allow us to make progress in our craft that are upset.

$2000 is a good amount of money to me at this point in my career, and many of the readers here, and I'm not going to invest that if the product won't give back in its value. A 1080p camera in 2017 won't give back or allow for growth with it for $2000.

If I am going to invest in a company for camera and lenses, I also want to know that they will listen to me and have my back. Both Sony and Panasonic have proved this, and that is why Canon will no longer get my money.

Also, my clients never ask for 4K, but my ability to shoot it and have that extra crispyness in my footage, does certainly help me in many different ways to produce beautiful footage that makes my clients happy. And lastly, I don't have to be an "expert" or on my way to ASC level status, to call out a company that no longer cares about aspiring filmmakers.

June 30, 2017 at 8:07PM

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John Haas
Cinematographer
898

But the thing is that $2000 is not a good amount of money in the scope of filmmaking. In fact, it is in the same range as Canon's lenses. If you are so hard up that you can't spend a few thousand more ( or less for a used C100) for an actual cinema camera, then you certainly can't afford the range of lenses, the actual Canon strength and profit maker, that Canon wants to sell to you. You are not the intended market or profit motive so Canon has no reason to care. In your case, you should definitely switch to the GH5 which has both cheaper cameras and cheaper native lenses.

July 1, 2017 at 10:11PM

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Casey Preston
Videographer
447