Gear Tech

Canon launches the R3; a flagship camera for pro sports and news photographers

The wait is over as Canon unveils 24-megapixel, 30 frames per second speed king…

After months of leaks and rumours, the waiting is finally over as Canon has officially announced the EOS R3 – the brand’s new flagship full-frame mirrorless professional camera, which has been built with professional sports, wildlife and news photographers in mind.

The R3 is the first Canon camera to feature a brand new vehicle tracking mode (which joins the people and animal tracking options) and another feature that’s sure to grab the headlines is the Eye Control AF technology, which Canon explains; ‘Eye control AF provides a more natural connection between the camera and the photographer. This intuitive and pioneering AF point selection method moves the focus point to where the photographer looks.’ In short, this means that the AF system will pick up on where the user is looking through the viewfinder.

Canon introduces the R3…

At the heart of the R3 is a 24.1 megapixel backside illuminated stacked CMOS sensor and the R3 is all about capturing fast moments. In fact, the R3 offers a ridiculously fast max burst rate of 30 frames per second. What’s more, the R3 also offers an insanely fast max shutter speed of 1/64000th shutter speed, which will be of great interest to action photographers.

With a rapid start up time of just 0.4 seconds, the R3 features Canon’s new Dual Pixel CMOS AF II autofocus system, which offers 4779 focus points and can focus in very low light conditions – in fact, the R3 will lock on to subjects in light down to -7.5 EV. To help keep shots steady, the R3 packs a 5-axis In Body Image Stabilisation (IBIS) system, which can pair up with RF lenses to offer up to 8-stops of compensation.

The R3 is the only camera from outside the brand’s cinema line that can offer video record lengths for longer than 30 minutes – in fact it’s now possible to record up to six hours of regular video or 1.5 hours at high 119.88/100p frame rates. The R3 can shoot 6K 60p RAW resolution footage, which offers 50 per cent more detail than 4K. Canon explains; ‘With 6K CRM RAW files, exposure and white balance can be corrected post capture to ensure stunning image reproduction.’

Check out the Canon R3 out in the field…

As you’d expect from such a premium camera, there’s a high level of weather-sealing and the R3 features a lightweight design with the body (with battery and card) tipping the scales at 1015g). There’s dust and water-resistance from the magnesium body for use in harsh conditions and Canon also says that weather resistance can be also maintained when using existing Speedlites, by connecting them to the newly announced Multi-Function Shoe Adapter AD-E1.

Other features include a 3.2-inch vari-angle LCD design, a blackout-free, 5.76 million dot electronic viewfinder (EVF), dual card slots (SD and CFExpress), a high capacity LP-E19 battery and a number of connectivity features such as Bluetooth. As you’d expect, the R3 is a premium camera so will carry a premium price-tag of £5,879 / $5999 and is expected to ship in November.