Canon EOS R5 Mirrorless Digital Camera

If word on the street is true, expect July to be a big month for Canon. That’s when we’re likely to see the release of 2 new camera bodies and 6 new RF lenses.

The Canon EOS R5 will likely grab most of the headlines. Featuring 8K (!) video recording, dual memory slots, IBIS (in-body image stabilization) for the first time in a Canon body, and myriad other high-end specs, this is being called the spiritual successor to the previous flagship, the EOS 5D Mark IV. Notably the R5 is a mirrorless design while the latter and older — but still very much worthy — DSLR design. Note: here’s the official Canon web page for the upcoming EOS R5.

Meanwhile Tech Radar is guessing, based on leaks by Canon Rumors, that the price of the R5 in the US will come in under $4,000 USD. That’s less than originally anticipated. Given the impressive amount of technology Canon is packing into this camera, the price seems about right, especially given this will likely wear the flagship banner and be aimed at working professionals, and serious enthusiasts.

From Canon Rumors, this is what the July 9, 2020 launch will look like (and I can only think of one other place that has more leaks than Canon):

Canon products being announced on July 9, 2020

  • Canon EOS R5
  • Canon EOS R6
  • Canon RF 50mm f/1.8 IS STM
  • Canon RF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM
  • Canon RF 85mm f/2 Macro IS STM
  • Canon RF 100-500mm f/4-7.1L IS USM
  • Canon RF 600mm f/11 DO IS STM
  • Canon RF 800mm f/11 DO IS STM
  • Teleconverter RF 1.4x
  • Teleconverter RF 2x

via Canon Rumors

While the release date and price are based on leaks and some internet prognostication, we absolutely do know the EOS R5 is a camera in development. Canon themselves teased earlier this year with a deep dive into some of the features and technology being developed for the new mirrorless camera. Some of the key specs per Canon:

  • Newly Developed Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
  • 8K30 Raw and 4K120 10-Bit Internal Video
  • In-Body 5-Axis Image Stabilization
  • 12 fps Mech. Shutter, 20 fps E. Shutter

B&H Photo has posted some of the features and describe the upcoming R5 as follows:

Canon’s EOS R5, the first of the next generation of full-frame mirrorless cameras planned for EOS R System, will include a newly developed CMOS sensor. The new sensor will enable enhanced features such as high-speed continuous shooting up to approximately 20 fps when using the silent shutter and up to approximately 12 fps when using the mechanical shutter; a feature professional sports and wildlife photographers will find to be extremely impactful on their ability to capture fast-moving subjects. From a video perspective, the camera’s 8K video capture capability will prepare videographers for the future of movie-making: capturing 8K footage today allows for even higher-quality 4K productions in addition to the ability to extract high-resolution still images from the video footage. The EOS R5 will be the first Canon camera equipped with IBIS (In Body Image Stabilization) and when used in conjunction with the extremely effective in-lens stabilization (IS), will allow photographers to handhold the camera in light levels not previously imagined. Additionally, the camera will also feature dual-card slots and will support the automatic transfer of image files from the device to the new cloud platform.

B&H also posted this video below about the R5 on YouTube.

WATCH: Introducing the CANON EOS R5! New cameras, RF lenses and more.

Many have been vocal in their criticism of Canon (there’s the internet for you). Full-frame mirrorless releases in recent years including the EOS R and EOS RP didn’t ignite the kind of excitement we’ve seen on the Sony side, say, with the Alpha 7 range, and in particular the successful A7 III and A7S II models. Might the giant have finally awoken?

We won’t know for sure until July, and some hands-on time to ensure Canon hasn’t perhaps crippled something here or there — something its been accused of in the past to, in theory at least, protect feature sets on higher end cameras such as the Canon EOS Cinema range.

Nevertheless I think we can confidently say that if the R5 does live up to what we’ve seen on paper regarding specs, and knowing how good Canon is with auto-focus (DPAF is magic), and assuming a price around $4,000 USD, this thing will be a home run.

Over the years I’ve enjoyed shooting videos for Stark Insider in and around the San Francisco Bay Area with a Canon C100 II and EOS 80D. We’ve shot concerts up in Napa, backstage Broadway shows in SF, and some red carpet stuff at local film festivals. Now that we’ve shifted to a more narrative and studio focus, I’ve found other tools more helpful. Notably the Panasonic GH5 and RED Dragon. Those wouldn’t be suitable for our previous run-and-gun work, and vice-versa. Now that we can control our lighting and camera setups we can take our time to “get the shot” so to speak. Not to mention, turnaround times are completely under our control now, meaning we can also take the time to get it right.

With the R5 for the first time, though, I find myself extremely interested in a Canon release. I’m expecting the sensor will have a high megapixel count (45 MP?) which will make this camera useful for shooting Loni Stark’s artwork — something I find challenging to get right with APS-C crop sensor cameras like the Canon EOS 80D and Sony a6000, the current camera I’m using to shoot her artwork. Add on RAW Canon Log capture, and decent frame rates (4K/120) and the R5 should be killer for video too. In a way it could be like a full-frame version of the GH5 on steroids?

Canon does move slowly. When it strikes the results typically impress. The EOS Cinema range is a good example (C100, C200, C300, C500) — robust, high quality workhorse cameras that get the job done. Certainly, the “R” mirrorless launch is off to a somewhat muted start. However, with the R5 (and rumored R6) that could change quickly. My money’s on Canon this time around.

Mark your calendars for the big Canon RF body and lens reveal: July 9, 2020.

UPDATE: The Canon EOS R5 is here, and I share my thoughts on the full-frame monster.