Judging from casual conversations with friends and filmmakers, it sounds like Nikon’s launch of its new retro-styled Nikon Zf camera with its classic and ergonomic design has been a resounding success.

We don’t have hard sales numbers to cite just yet, but the Zf is objectively a very solid camera for shooting video with its 4K/30p video oversampled from 6K, and subjectively it is very cool with its classical-inspired design and feel.

As we even mentioned in our review of the Nikon Zf, the camera industry usually operates in a copycat fashion, so it was so nice to see a brand try something new. And, of course, it’s making the other manufacturers jealous.

Here’s everything we know so far about recent reported rumors about Canon possibly looking to do the same.

Canon Retro Camera Rumors

According to reports on both Canon Rumors and Canon Watch, Canon has officially started conducting market research via various channels to get feedback from Canon users as to which camera they’d like to bring back with a new retro-fitted design. So far, the top choices for a new retro-inspired EOS camera would be the Canon AE-1, the Canon F-1, the Canon P, or the Canonet QL17.

As a longtime owner and shooter with the AE-1, I’d have to admit I’d be pretty interested in at least checking out a digital version of this camera that could recreate the look and feel plus record 4K video.

The Canonet QL17 would be quite interesting, too. As is with Nikon, Canon has a rich library of camera bodies and models to comb through if the camera company would like to seriously consider trying to find that perfect fun and retro body to house their modern digital camera technology.

\u200bThe historic Canon AE-1 camera body on an off-white background

The historic Canon AE-1 camera body.

Credit: Canon

Official Confirmation From Canon

From the same reports, it sounds like Canon has been asked about this directly in the past as well. One Canon executive had this to share regarding plans to release this new retro camera type:

In conclusion, I can’t say yes or no, but you are right that some consumers prefer some of the best-selling models in the past, their design and appearance. Also, you can see that we have listened to the voices and requests of our customers and made improvements to our EOS body, whether it be appearance or operability. It is very important to me that there is a consumer base that wants a retro body, but unfortunately I have no more information to share. — a Canon executive during the Photo & Imaging show in Shanghai.

Still, as far as rumors go, while this one does sound to credibly confirm that Canon is considering this venture, we’re far removed from any official announcement from Canon about this project being a go.

That being said, Canon doesn’t usually run its new cameras by the general public. Instead, we all usually find out about new cameras when they’re announced at major conferences like NAB. So, it could also be to the surprise of no one if Canon rushed a product like this out sometime in 2024 at the earliest.

We’ll keep tabs on this one and share any updates as they develop.