And if others recall earlier rumors about a possible Mirrorless Rebel. I picture the Rebel ergonomics, look and feel to stay the same, aka take out mirrorbox, etc and go to a EVF and maintain the current EF-S/EF mount. This seems like a strategy a conservative company like Canon would go for.
I'm torn here.
To simply pull the mirror assembly out of the body is a nice science project for Canon, but it won't reduce the size. For all the great comments we've seen on this thread about EVFs with more useful information / focus peaking, more reliability without a mirror mechanism, etc. the basic draw of mirrorless is to make it smaller, so a good chunk of folks who did like the EOS-M's small form factor would find such a body a step in the wrong direction.
So my gut is telling me that Canon will stay conservative (for now) and do the following things with the next EOS-M:
- A more modern sensor, DPAF, etc. = 90% likelihood (fair amount of speculation that it will be the 70D sensor itself)
- Improve AF speed = 100% likelihood (one would assume the prior bullet point would greatly assist this)
- Offer some form of an EVF -- either a modular one (Canon loves it's grip and wireless transmitter upcharges...) or possibly a split into a non-EVF body and a better body with an integral EVF = 75% likelihood
- More native EF-M lenses (for smallest possible size) = No idea. (They've been so slow on pushing out EF-M glass.)
Canon really has to do the first three things or I think it will remain DOA to enthusiasts or pros looking for a second body. Some folks love their EOS-M bodies, but I will not touch one without a viewfinder.
I must respectfully disagree with you that the primary objective to getting rid of the mirror is to make the camera smaller. It is my contention that the reason the EOS-M was a failure was that it lacked a viewfinder, undoubtedly because they were aiming for minimum size.
Size drove the design, right into the ground.
The only way to use the camera is to "chimp", so what is otherwise a superb piece of equipment is reduced to a P+S for a great deal more money. I bought mine during the great blowout sale, and enjoy it, but I understand the limitations.
Take DSLR, remove the mirror and prism, and put on a rangefinder (optical or EVF), and you've got a much better form factor for taking pictures, with all of the additional benefits mentioned above.
As for pros looking for a second unit, which is more likely to sell, something that can use all the same lenses, or something that needs a different series or an adapter?
I'd be interested in a nice FF rangefinder (EF) with removable viewfinder in the size of a classic full size to I have something to hold on to.
I'd "pull out the plastic" for a FF model using EF lenses in the form factor of the Rollei SL3000 (for those of you not familiar, think 35mm Hasselblad 500) using an EVF on the top. That could be a game changer for Canon.