The Canon EOS R3 is out in the wild

Michael Clark

Now we see through a glass, darkly...
Apr 5, 2016
3,657
2,142
Not sure if this is an intentional mixup, but last time I checked it was his wing which was gold, not his member :LOL:

Well, his posts for the past year or so at least make him sound like a real D... ahem, Member.
 
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dilbert

EOS M6 Mark II
Aug 12, 2010
89
75
From the stills side, the improvements brought by mirrorless can be useful. But they're simply not going to alter the nature of photography or render you, with an 'old mirror flapper', unable to produce competitive work. Any claim that DSLRs and their lenses from the past decade are dead is hyperbole. This is especially true of your lenses which adapt seamlessly to R bodies.

They're not dead, they're just less competitive.

Faster shooting due to the lack of a mirror?
Faster focus tracking by the lens?
No mirror blackout?
Eye focus?

The lack of these things doesn't make the craft useless and professional photographer unable to work, but having these tools in your belt can make it easier for you to get the right shot and perhaps give you a competitive advantage over the photographer that doesn't have the above capabilities.

None of the above has anything to do with composition or being able to select when the right moment is about to appear but it can have a positive input when it comes to capturing the right moment.


(I'd say there is a 90% chance that was captured with a Canon DSLR)
 

dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
They're not dead, they're just less competitive.

Faster shooting due to the lack of a mirror?
Faster focus tracking by the lens?
No mirror blackout?
Eye focus?
Opinions are going to vary on faster shooting. And even I have to admit that there are likely edge cases where an extremely high fps really does help. But I've found in general higher fps rates simply create more work for me. My ability to capture peak moments did not diminish in the slightest from dropping down to 5 fps. (I basically use my 5Ds for everything now including sports, action, and wildlife.) If anything being able to zoom back a bit (100-400) knowing I can crop in helped more than faster fps on other bodies (more lead time to shutter release). Maybe 30 fps will be the rate to change that perception, but I kind of doubt it. Outside of edge cases it's just a lot of frames of the same thing.

Are any RF lenses actually faster at AF tracking? I would be surprised if this was the case versus recent EF L glass. And if so, does it matter? Once the subject is acquired tracking speed has not been an issue for me on L teles all the way back to the 7D. Camera subject recognition and AF point selection seems to be a better example of where mirrorless has improved things. But I'm not convinced it has improved things so much as to render a 5D3 less competitive.

Mirror blackout is preferable to continuous shooting lag which is an issue even on the R5/R6 and Sony A9s. Perhaps this will be solved with the R3.

Eye focus is one of the more interesting advancements. And an advancement that can bump up the keeper rate with really fast primes and models. But I honestly have not had a problem nailing the eye in those situations going all the way back to the 7D. So the question becomes: how many frames of the same person with razor thin focus do I need? Does a 95% keeper rate vs. 90% really change photography for me? I would likely rank the R3's extreme low light AF capabilities (going by pre-release specs) higher than eye AF in terms of practical impact.

Some of my opinions are no doubt influenced by experience. A newbie can likely pickup an R3 and nail focus on a model's eye with a f/1.2 prime. Not as likely with a DSLR.
 

dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
Maybe you should try out an R5 or even an R6 before making that statement. I used to feel the same way... then I made the move. Haven't missed the OVF one time. Your image is a digital copy of reality. The only difference is with mirrorless you will see exactly what that's going to look like when you hit the shutter.
Yes and no. EVF lets you preview exposure and color balance, and it's close enough to make meaningful decisions about those things. But it is by far the worst preview available between EVF, rear screen, home monitor, and the real scene (OVF). Color, contrast, and dynamic range are all way off. I have yet to see an EVF that didn't feel like a VGA monitor from the 90s. I can also still perceive some pixelization, though that varies by user.

If an EVF looked like my 4k calibrated monitor or even a good rear screen I could perhaps jump without missing an OVF. That's not the case right now.
 
Aug 7, 2018
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My very old camera can only do 12 fps and 14 fps without refocussing after each shot, but I hardly ever use it, because each frame reduces the life of the shutter. If you shoot in burst mode very often, the 400,000 photos that are promised for the camera are soon behind you and then you might need a new shutter for a lot of money. How will that chance with electronic shutter? Will there be no limit on the number of frames?

Also it is quite a pain to look through all those images, I once took about 1,000 photos of Rafael Nadal during a match and it takes a lot of time to find the best shots. How would that change if you have 30 fps and press the shutter button even more often? You might end up with 5,000 or 10,000 shots. Without some help of some artificial intelligence that finds the best shots, you might need days to go through all those shots. And what would you do with the lower 99% of those images? Delete them? For a photographer it is always hard to delete a photo. because you never know if you could need it again. That attitude has to change. Otherwise you will drown in images.

So far I only saw the EVF of the original EOS R at Photokina in 2018. I was not very convinced yet. Unfortunately there might not be a next Photokina any time soon. So I wonder if I have to order an R3 without having ever looked through the viewfinder. I hope there will be some Youtube videos that give me some impression of the quality.
 

Sporgon

5% of gear used 95% of the time
CR Pro
Eye focus is one of the more interesting advancements. And an advancement that can bump up the keeper rate with really fast primes and models. But I honestly have not had a problem nailing the eye in those situations going all the way back to the 7D. So the question becomes: how many frames of the same person with razor thin focus do I need? Does a 95% keeper rate vs. 90% really change photography for me? I would likely rank the R3's extreme low light AF capabilities (going by pre-release specs) higher than eye AF in terms of practical impact.

Some of my opinions are no doubt influenced by experience. A newbie can likely pickup an R3 and nail focus on a model's eye with a f/1.2 prime. Not as likely with a DSLR.
I recently picked up a RP at a good price, and already had an adapter, being a forward thinking guy ;)
Where I notice the difference in AF is when shooting at a wideish aperture and off centre of the frame. With the RP I can shoot with impunity at f/1.8 even well off centre. I can’t reliably do this with any of my dslrs.
 

bernie_king

EOS M6 Mark II
Jun 30, 2014
78
102
Yes and no. EVF lets you preview exposure and color balance, and it's close enough to make meaningful decisions about those things. But it is by far the worst preview available between EVF, rear screen, home monitor, and the real scene (OVF). Color, contrast, and dynamic range are all way off. I have yet to see an EVF that didn't feel like a VGA monitor from the 90s. I can also still perceive some pixelization, though that varies by user.

If an EVF looked like my 4k calibrated monitor or even a good rear screen I could perhaps jump without missing an OVF. That's not the case right now.
That really hasn't been my experience, but to each his own. I have stopped previewing my photos on the back screen on the R5 in favor of the EVF. It's just higher resolution and you don't have to deal with glare. As far as it looking like a VGA monitor, have you tried a modern EVF?
 
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dilbert

EOS M6 Mark II
Aug 12, 2010
89
75
Are any RF lenses actually faster at AF tracking?

Lets see. (1) The RF interface allows for a much faster exchange of information between the lens and camera (2) The RF interface allows for the camera to supply the lens with more power (this is especially significant for larger lenses with heavy elements.)

To summarise, it isn't the lens that's necessarily faster but it is the RF system that allows for faster and more accurate focus.

Mirror blackout is preferable to continuous shooting lag which is an issue even on the R5/R6 and Sony A9s. Perhaps this will be solved with the R3.

I'll puat one in the opinion bucket as there are many who sing the praise of no blackout.

Eye focus is one of the more interesting advancements. And an advancement that can bump up the keeper rate with really fast primes and models. But I honestly have not had a problem nailing the eye in those situations going all the way back to the 7D.

Either you've not read the stories or I was opaque in my question. I was referring to the camera tracking the photographer's eye to determine what to focus on - not the camera nailing focus on an eye (a commonly talked about feature elsewhere.)

Look, I get it. You've got an EF camera plus EF lenses and you want to defend that because you're defending your own decisions to spend money on it. At the time that was the probably the right thing to do. Technology has moved on and it isn't going to wait for any of us. Newer is always going to be better - if it wasn't, nobody would buy into it. The conservatives amongst us will always resist change and the progressives will always welcome it with open arms.
 

dilbert

EOS M6 Mark II
Aug 12, 2010
89
75
I recently picked up a RP at a good price, and already had an adapter, being a forward thinking guy ;)
Where I notice the difference in AF is when shooting at a wideish aperture and off centre of the frame. With the RP I can shoot with impunity at f/1.8 even well off centre. I can’t reliably do this with any of my dslrs.

And on DSLRs with live view, that's able to focus when the normal focusing cannot. The writing has been on the wall for OVFs for some time.
 

dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
I recently picked up a RP at a good price, and already had an adapter, being a forward thinking guy ;)
Where I notice the difference in AF is when shooting at a wideish aperture and off centre of the frame. With the RP I can shoot with impunity at f/1.8 even well off centre. I can’t reliably do this with any of my dslrs.
That's a fair observation as DSLR AF modules tend to be less accurate off center.
 

dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
That really hasn't been my experience, but to each his own. I have stopped previewing my photos on the back screen on the R5 in favor of the EVF. It's just higher resolution and you don't have to deal with glare. As far as it looking like a VGA monitor, have you tried a modern EVF?
Does the Sony A9 count? That's probably the highest IQ EVF I've had real stick time on.
 

dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
Lets see. (1) The RF interface allows for a much faster exchange of information between the lens and camera
From what I've seen the RF interface adds pins for a serial channel for exchanging more complex data like lens corrections. Otherwise it's EF. And the EF pins/protocol would ever prove to be the upper bound on AF performance. Computing distance and moving lens elements would always be slower than the frequency at which EF signals are exchanged.

(2) The RF interface allows for the camera to supply the lens with more power (this is especially significant for larger lenses with heavy elements.)
A number of 1D bodies do this, as does the 7D mark II. Did RF provide for an even higher power limit here? Do any R bodies use it yet?

I'll puat one in the opinion bucket as there are many who sing the praise of no blackout.
The existence of frame lag under continuous shooting is not opinion, it's observable fact. The significance of frame lag is more a matter of opinion. Someone who never holds the shutter button down long enough to encounter it may indeed find mirror blackout to be worse. But photographers have complained that they can lose erratically moving subjects, and it's hard to argue that mirror blackout is worse than this.

On the R3 this may prove to be a moot point. If it can shoot at 30 fps then it can likely (?) feed the EVF at 30 fps under continuous shooting. That should be sufficient to never fall behind even if it's 'jerky' compared to 60 or 120 Hz refresh when not shooting.

Either you've not read the stories or I was opaque in my question. I was referring to the camera tracking the photographer's eye to determine what to focus on - not the camera nailing focus on an eye (a commonly talked about feature elsewhere.)
You have to be more specific since 'eye focus' can mean either one. I've had this before on an EOS 3. It's neat, it's not a game changer.

Look, I get it. You've got an EF camera plus EF lenses and you want to defend that because you're defending your own decisions to spend money on it.
No, I simply don't find mirrorless tech to be 'game changing' in a way that would render DSLRs from the last decade uncompetitive. It's simply not the same as, say, the move from film to digital.

Newer is always going to be better - if it wasn't, nobody would buy into it.
The question is whether newer leads to any real, consistent, and widespread improvements in published photography. I can look at small format work from, say, 1995 and 2005 and see the impact of digital in terms of both technical IQ and creative freedom. Likewise when comparing magazine published work from 1995 and, say, 1975 on technical IQ (the difference being in digital publishing even if the originals were captured on film). I don't expect to see those kinds of IQ or creativity gains because of EVFs or eye based AF point selection.
 
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FrenchFry

Wildlife enthusiast!
Jun 14, 2020
246
293
Does the Sony A9 count? That's probably the highest IQ EVF I've had real stick time on.
When I had the Sony A9 and A7RIV, I noticed a tremendous difference in clarity and quality between them. The Sony A9 viewfinder is 3,686,400 Dot, whereas the Sony A7RIV is 5,760,000 Dot.
The Canon R5 is 5,760,000 Dot, and again much noticeably improved over the Sony A9.

If you're genuinely curious about whether EVFs have improved, try spending some time using a camera with one of the newer EVFs and see for yourself. The Sony A1's 9,437,184 Dot viewfinder sounds very impressive. I have not looked through it personally yet.

To me, the EVF quality improvements between 3.7 million and 5.8 million dots are highly noticeable and make the R5 much easier to use. In fact, the 3,690,000 Dot viewfinder on the R6 is the only thing that kept me from getting one as a second body.
 
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stevelee

FT-QL
CR Pro
Jul 6, 2017
2,031
774
Davidson, NC
Yes and no. EVF lets you preview exposure and color balance, and it's close enough to make meaningful decisions about those things. But it is by far the worst preview available between EVF, rear screen, home monitor, and the real scene (OVF). Color, contrast, and dynamic range are all way off. I have yet to see an EVF that didn't feel like a VGA monitor from the 90s. I can also still perceive some pixelization, though that varies by user.

If an EVF looked like my 4k calibrated monitor or even a good rear screen I could perhaps jump without missing an OVF. That's not the case right now.
Except that the preview would still be of what the JPEG would look like if you were shooting JPEGs, not how the Raw file will come up in Lightroom or ACR before you start twiddling, wouldn't it?
 
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dtaylor

Canon 5Ds
Jul 26, 2011
1,730
1,280
When I had the Sony A9 and A7RIV, I noticed a tremendous difference in clarity and quality between them. The Sony A9 viewfinder is 3,686,400 Dot, whereas the Sony A7RIV is 5,760,000 Dot.
The Canon R5 is 5,760,000 Dot, and again much noticeably improved over the Sony A9.

If you're genuinely curious about whether EVFs have improved, try spending some time using a camera with one of the newer EVFs and see for yourself. The Sony A1's 9,437,184 Dot viewfinder sounds very impressive. I have not looked through it personally yet.

To me, the EVF quality improvements between 3.7 million and 5.8 million dots are highly noticeable and make the R5 much easier to use. In fact, the 3,690,000 Dot viewfinder on the R6 is the only thing that kept me from getting one as a second body.
While I can perceive some graininess or pixelization, EVF resolution isn't my main issue by a long shot. Side note: I hate that the industry uses "dots" to make EVFs sound extremely high resolution. Divide by 3 to get the true resolution.
 
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bernie_king

EOS M6 Mark II
Jun 30, 2014
78
102
While I can perceive some graininess or pixelization, EVF resolution isn't my main issue by a long shot. Side note: I hate that the industry uses "dots" to make EVFs sound extremely high resolution. Divide by 3 to get the true resolution.
I agree. It would be better to have real resolution. The R5 EVF is around 1600x1200 which is about 1080p, so true not 4K (hardly VGA though). I think the A1's EVF equates to roughly a QuadHD. Both are more than acceptable for viewing an image.
 

usern4cr

R5
CR Pro
Sep 2, 2018
1,155
1,908
Kentucky, USA
While I can perceive some graininess or pixelization, EVF resolution isn't my main issue by a long shot. Side note: I hate that the industry uses "dots" to make EVFs sound extremely high resolution. Divide by 3 to get the true resolution.
Really? Measuring the EVF or back LCD in "dots" is exactly what those sensors are. Maybe you'd rather they call them "pixels" and use the same number (not divide by 3)? That would be what they're doing with the (Bayer) sensor! The fact that they interpolate sensor dots via algorithms into "marketing called pixels" doesn't change the fact that the sensor is actually "dots" and not "pixels". So, the fact that the marketing department used the "honest" term for EVF & back LCD is what is upsetting you? And for the record, even dividing by 3 and calling it a "pixel" is not what the EVF, LCD, or sensor is. They don't have "pixel" sensors or emitters. All three are "dots", and that's the only "honest" term for all 3 of them.
 

David - Sydney

EOS R
CR Pro
Dec 7, 2014
834
695
www.flickr.com
You might not see the difference, but the photo from a helicopter with the photographer behind it would be "real", because he was really there.

With an EVF you are also behind the camera, but while you are looking through your viewfinder, you do not see reality any more.

Of course what our eyes see isn't reality either. Colours to not really exist. They are just a way for our brain to visualize some wavelenghts of light. The fact that the world in reality is dark, is quite creepy. However light going directly into our eyes after getting reflected from objects is the closest we can get to "reality".
Some serious philosophising going on here. Either you can see the reality or you can't. Shooting from a helicopter with a EVF doesn't negate the reality of the photographer. Shooting from a remote screen on a drone doesn't negate the experience or their perception of reality at the time. In either case, and as you say, you can't see the difference in the final result and I don't believe that the final result is impacted by the "reality" of the photographer looking through a OVF.