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New Canon XC10 4k camera announced with sample footage

Parts of content have been curated by the article author.

Available for preorder at

I'm a big fan of the 1inch sensor cameras such as the  Sony RX10  and  Panasonic FZ1000 . When there was rumor that canon might release a competitor, i got a little excited.

First impression of the design is befuddling, why make such a large eyecup instead of a separate EVF? Anyways, here's what we know about it:

-1inch sensor
-12 stops Dynamic Range
-SD and CFast media
-Canon Log profile
-8bit 4:2:2 4k at up to 305mbps
-iso up to 20,000
-Built in ND filter
-10x lens, f2.8 at wide, 5.6 at tele
-5 axis image stabilizer
-Weighs little over a kilogram
-Built in Wi-Fi
-Price: $2499

There are a few elephants in the room with this camera, it certainly has lots of potential with that huge 4k bitrate.

Lets start with The Lens:

It's a full frame equivalant of 24-240mm in photo mode, and 27-270mm in video mode. That range is fine, but the aperture is only 2.8 at full wide, and drops to a rather slow 5.6 at tele. This i believe will be the reason why many people do not buy the XC10. The Sony RX10 does 24-200mm at a constant 2.8, the FZ1000 does 25-400mm at 2.8-4, both with the same sensor sizes. It's dicey with fixed lens cameras, because you are stuck with whatever it is. 


My feeling is that the XC10 will make up for that slow tele with the ISO performance. Considering the FZ1000/RX10 use a 20mp sensor and do a reasonable iso3200, this XC10 at 12mp has a good shot at being a stop or two better. We simply don't know yet what kind of magic might be going on in that sensor.

Form factor

It keeps in the small DSLR arena, but that eyecup attachment just looks awkward. Having an EVF is fairly critical at times, so hopefully attaching/detatching/overall use of that eyecup isn't as bad as it looks. If the price does remain at $2499, i would have expected a real EVF on there.

Serious Photo Mode?

What's also odd is that they claim full photo capabilities, but JPEG only? That was a big letdown for me that it cannot shoot RAW, and frankly doesn't make much sense. I get it, it's a video camera first, photo camera second, but at launch they're toting the photo abilities a fair amount. Maybe It will do RAW and they just forgot... #falsehope

Drone use?

There was lots of talk about this camera being targeted at drone users, and that 1kg weight seems to be in line with that rumor. And aside from the blackmagic pocket, this looks to have the most robust codec in a DSLR sized camera.

Whether or not this little fella will be a big hit is of course uncertain, but i agree with Terry Nixon at TMS, that this will be the camera to use for drones, the size and weight are ideal for some of the smaller payload quadcopters.

It also will be a strong contender for me as a vacation/travel camera. I went from an RX10  to an FZ1000  to a GH4  for that purpose/and B cam. I've loved all 3, but none had real power in the low light department. If this is a new sensor and canon has worked their magic, a really clean iso 3200/6400 could be a big selling point. 

At a price point of around $2499, it has a lot of competition to deal with, If it were $1500 i could see great potential, but i'm very skeptical at the moment that the price will move many cameras. Canon certainly has a gamble on its hands with a fixed lens which is rather slow at f5.6 at the long end. But who knows, the iso might be remarkable!

Added on 2015-04-08 by
Darren Levine

Darren Levine

Stimulus Video

DP/Videographer, Video/Film Editor
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