Black Friday may be coming up, but the camera rumors never cool down! We've seen plenty of long-reported rumors come to fruition this year and, with the next Olympics approaching in 2024, there's plenty more in store.
Olympic years mean that the biggest camera rumors surround new flagship sports bodies, but there's plenty more going on away from the Olympiad. Canon, Sony, Nikon, Fujifilm, Panasonic, OM System et al have been beavering away on new kit – and you can find out exactly what they're up to right here.
As always, camera rumors often sound like pipe dreams – but while some of them are too good to be true, some dreams do come true. So take what follows with a pinch of salt, but remember that smoke generally leads back to a fire!
Canon rumors 2023
Canon is always the subject of more camera rumors than any other manufacturer, in large part because it has been the most prolific photographic patenter for 35 consecutive years.
This year it has filled out the entry-level and midrange of its EOS R system, with the advanced APS-C Canon EOS R8 and beginner-friendly full-frame Canon EOS R10. And having introduced the compact Canon EOS R50 and Canon EOS R100, it also officially discontinued the EOS M camera line.
So, no more DSLRs or EOS M cameras. But this year the company did give us a dedicated (and highly conceptual) vlogging camera, in the form of the Canon PowerShot V10, and dropped a major firmware update that enables the Canon EOS R5 to shoot 400MP photos.
So, what else is the industry leader working on?
Canon EOS R1
Canon has confirmed that the EOS R1 exists, and it may also have confirmed that it's coming in 2024 – but we already knew that anyway. Expect an announcement and release ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics, so that pros can shoot with it from the sidelines of the Summer Games.
Specs remain a shot in the dark at this point. We've heard everything from an 85MP global shutter sensor to 1.6 million ISO sensitivity to 9 stops of in-body image stabilization. All or none of which might be true; I'm always reminded that the leaked specs for the Canon EOS R5 seemed too good to be true, but that's exactly what they turned out to be.
Still, the latest rumor is that – despite the technology featuring in the Sony A9 III – the EOS R1 will not use a global shutter sensor. One cool thing we do know is that Canon has patented haptic feedback for silent shooting in a 1-series (or maybe 3-series) body. Could this indicate a totally electronic shutter? We also hear that the camera will feature an even more accurate version of the Canon EOS R3's Eye Control AF, which enables you to move the focus points by looking around the EVF.
Canon EOS R5 Mark II
A successor to the Canon EOS R5 is not only on the way but, depending on who you listen to, is more of a priority than the flagship EOS R1. Which makes sense, when you consider what a blockbuster success the original was (and what a limited market a true professional camera is restricted to).
The latest reports are that we could see a 60MP sensor with multiple resolutions (and again, as with the R1, it's being reported that the R5 Mark II will not use a global shutter). It also seems a shoo-in that we will see another iteration of the 400MP photos introduced to the original R5, made possible by the magic of pixel shift. And it's a pretty sure thing that 8K 60p, with increased record times, will be implemented. In fact, we've heard that Canon is even aiming for 4K 240p, in order to make this the class-leading camera when it comes to video frame-rates.
Other than that, we will undoubtedly see the autofocus modes that debuted in the Canon EOS R6 Mark II and were further honed in the Canon EOS R8 – namely subject detection expanded to include horses and planes, along with a bump up to 40fps burst shooting.
Canon EOS R3 Mark II
With the reports that the R1 won't use a global shutter sensor, could it be that the technology debuts in the next version of the EOS R3? It would make sense. The R1 is expected to be an all-purpose powerhouse, with high resolution and ISO sensitivity rather than just all-out speed. Global shutter sensors are designed to be fast, but the compromise is a higher base ISO and more restricted sensitivity.
The R3, meanwhile, is very specifically a speed-oriented sports camera. And with speed a priority over megapixels or ISO, a global shutter sensor feels like a much better fit in this product line.
Fujifilm and Olympus have been doing it for years. Nikon has done it with the Nikon Zf and Nikon Z fc. And Canon could be the next manufacturer to produce a vintage-styled mirrorless camera – possibly a modern version of the iconic Canon AE-1.
"I can't say yes or no, but as you say, some consumers are particularly fond of some of the best-selling models of the past, their design and appearance," said a Canon exec when asked if the company would produce a retro-style camera. "In addition, you can see that our EOS body, whether in appearance or operability, has been improved by listening to customer feedback and requests. We attach great importance to the fact that there is a consumer base that wants a retro body."
Such importance, in fact, that Canon conducted a market survey asking which of its film cameras customers would like to see made digital. Some posited options were the Canon P, Canon F-1, Canonet QL17… and the Canon AE-1. Fingers crossed!
More hybrid lenses
We've just seen the launch of the Canon RF 24-105mm f/2.8 Z – yes, a 24-105mm lens with an f/2.8 aperture. Not only is this a real trinity buster that is going to change the game for professionals, it's also the first in a line of hybrid lenses on the way from Canon.
We know precious little else at this point, but Canon is working on a series of optics that sit in the middle of its three product spheres: cinema lenses, photography lenses, and broadcast lenses. Each category has unique demands, such as focus breathing or remote control applications, so Canon has produced distinct product lines for each industry. Now, however, with the rise of hybrid cameras and hybrid shooters, it is producing lenses that can be used across all three disciplines.
While we don't know if they will all revolve around the coveted f/2.8 trinity aperture, or whether they will all feature Power Zoom (the "Z" in the new 24-105mm's name), we can be pretty confident that this line will always possess the new dedicated clickless aperture ring, focus breathing suppression, and the "cinema look" to marry with the dedicated CN-R Cinema EOS primes.
Canon Powershot V11
Rumors of a Canon vlogging camera swirled for years until the Canon PowerShot V10 finally dropped. And with vlogging cameras being the hottest thing in the industry right now, expect a successor sooner than later.
With the V10 being an entry-level model, we've heard rumblings that the next one will be a higher-end version. It's been suggested to us that weather sealing (with new microphones to accommodate the disrupted audio) is on the agenda, along with a better solution to windshields and other accessories than the slightly haphazard region-by-region products currently available.
Canon wearable neck camera
Wearable cameras are big business, and Canon has designed an intriguing one that's worn around the neck. Ostensibly for use in the manufacturing and maintenance industries, this adjustable camera features a laser indicator to show where the point of focus is and ensure that the right area is in frame – meaning that there are a wealth of consumer possibilities for the device as well.
This is one we're really intrigued by. As we've seen from the likes of the Canon PowerShot Zoom, Canon PowerShot Pick and Canon PowerShot V10, the manufacturer is increasingly bringing these intriguing concept cameras to market – and we really hope this new wearable follows suit.
In March 2022 Canon submitted an application for a patent for a product that is a drive device, an electronic device and an image pickup device with a mobile body.
From the illustrative diagrams included in the application, it looks like the design of the camera unit could be very similar to that of the Canon Powershot Pick – an AI-powered camera capable of recording both video and stills. It automatically detects movement, can track a subject and can be controlled using voice commands.
The Powershot Pick features an 11.7MP camera, has advanced face recognition, connects to a purpose-made app and is compact, lightweight and portable – all of which are features that would be desirable on a drone camera.
Canon EOS RS
Not to be confused with the EOS R5, rumors persist that Canon is developing a high-resolution full-frame mirrorless camera to compete with the likes of the 61MP Sony A7R IV. In fact, we've even seen some reports suggesting that a medium format-rivaling 100MP EOS R is being worked on.
The latest rumblings come in the form of a list of purported specs for what has been dubbed the Canon EOS RS – a nod to the Canon EOS 5DS, which is the 50MP high-res DSLR that the mirrorless version would effectively replace.
According to these claims, we can expect an 80MP sensor, with a slightly larger body than the EOS R that comprises a bigger grip, LCD and EVF. Additionally, it is claimed that the "viewfinder" (it is unclear whether this is the EVF or the LCD) can be tilted up and down, and that the camera possesses a "new style" of joystick (potentially the Smart Controller from the 1D X Mark III that also features on the R3) along with dual SD card slots.
Canon EOS C50 and C90
These have been long rumored, but are yet to make their expected debut at any of the broadcast trade shows where a launch would make sense. This could be due to the ongoing component crisis, of course.
The Canon verdict
What we think: Canon has gone all in on EOS R, with DSLRs and EOS M cameras seemingly having bitten the dust. but not just in the sense of traditional camera bodies – more and more we're seeing it stretch the boundaries of photo products, with concept cameras like the Canon PowerShot Pick and Posture Fit. It has also finally brought APS-C bodies to the EOS R system – along with an outright replacement for the M50, which makes things feel increasingly precarious for the EOS M product line.