In a race to win the crown for the most absurd levels of magnification, Canon may have a camera with a 100x optical zoom waiting in its wings. Egami spotted a new patent that describes such a superzoom camera sporting a lens with a 3.6-340mm reach. In the 35mm equivalent world, the lens would work out to a focal length of 20-1900mm. The lens is also listed to have 13 elements in 10 groups with an aperture range of f3-9.
Right now the superzoom camera world is doing pretty well with the 50x capable Canon SX50 HS, Sony HX300, and Fujifilm FinePix SL1000. There’s also the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ70 that broached 60x. A 100x lens, however, would be truly record breaking for the entire superzoom segment, as well as being a twice the camera Canon’s last superzoom was in some respects. Comparatively, the SX50 offers an equivalent field of view of 24-1200mm with an aperture range of f2.9-7.1.
Of course, just having a patent doesn’t mean we’ll see a 100x zoom superzoom camera any time soon. But if Canon’s new 100x camera were to come out at sub $500 price range like the SX50 HS, shooters could have another camera that’s way more pocketable than any telephoto lens—such as the Sigma 120-300mm Art lens—and at a fraction of the price. We’ve got our fingers crossed to see something come out of this at CES in January.