What I Want in a Canon Full Frame Mirrorless Camera

Reports have been stating that a Canon Full Frame mirrorless camera should be coming this year.

With Photokina 2018 just around the corner, it would be insane if a Canon full Frame mirrorless camera wasn’t launched. The company hasn’t taken mirrorless very seriously for years now, but they’ve started to ramp up their EOS M lineup of cameras and lenses. It’s only a matter of time until they release a full frame camera. With a number of very decent DSLR cameras, Canon has enough technology to either recycle parts into a Canon full frame mirrorless camera or even create something completely new to show us things to come. To get ready for the launch, I put together a few wishes for what I’d love to see in a Canon full frame mirrorless.

The Canon 5DSr Sensor

I first got into Canon via their old S5 point and shoot. Later on I moved up to the Canon 5D Mk II and eventually the Canon 6D. But the one camera I absolutely loved from Canon was the Canon 5Ds series. The 5Dsr is the same camera but without a low pass filter. Everything about the sensor was fantastic though: the color rendition, the dynamic range, the high ISO output, seemed to all work really well in Capture One (even though our review reflects tests done in Lightroom.) So a Canon full frame mirrorless camera should have a full frame sensor that’s as solid as the one in the Canon 5Ds. With 50MP, Canon could do a few tweaks to the sensor to get it into territory to compete with the Sony a7r III–or at least one can hope!

An Enhanced DIGIC Processor

We’re not totally sure about the minute details of the DIGIC processor except that they seem to get a fair amount of refreshes. A Canon full frame mirrorless deserves a completely new DIGIC processor that’s high end and will be able to handle things like Wifi transmission, 4K video, at least five frames a second, and any improvements to high ISO noise and detail rendition.

Rangefinder Style Camera Body with a Nice EVF

Canon has created a lot of DSLR style camera bodies, but they used to have very nice rangefinder style camera bodies too. In fact, I miss those. They had these wonderful stacked dials and all. Granted, you can still find those dials on some of their cameras, but a high-end rangefinder style camera body could solve some big problems Canon may have internally. There could be concerns with how they’d differentiate it from their SLRs and some of their other mirrorless cameras. Giving it a rugged, beefy rangefinder build could be a solution.

If you’ve ever felt or used an old Canon 7 rangefinder, think about something like that. You’d probably be thinking about the Fujifilm X Pro 2 or the Olympus Pen F in some ways, but Canon could surely put their own spin on it.

Vari-Angle Touch Screen

Canon’s touchscreens are arguably the best in the industry due to how they work with every function of the camera and the company’s very simple menu system. Making a vari-angle touch screen could give video shooters a lot of versatility, and giving users the ability to completely hide the screen by flipping it in towards the camera body could be a nice way for photographers to shoot in a stealthy manner. There are many times where I wanted a vari-angle screen vs the style Sony uses.

Dual SD Card Slots

Let’s be honest here, this should be a standard feature on any high-end mirrorless camera at this point. Dual SD card slots are very useful for separating video and photos, for overflow, RAW and JPEGs, etc. A Canon full frame mirrorless should absolutely have this.

Weather Sealing

What would a good Canon camera be without weather sealing? A Canon full frame mirrorless would absolutely need it. It wouldn’t need to be 1D level, but at least 5D level or even 6D level.

During our testing period with the Canon 6D Mk II, we took it out into the rain and it survived with absolutely no problems at all. If Canon’s enthusiast full frame DSLR can handle what it did in Yellowstone when we tested it, then I’m sure a Canon full frame mirrorless would and should be able to handle conditions very similar.

Three Small, Fast Aperture Primes at Launch

One of the absolute best things any company can do is launch their cameras with small, fast aperture primes. When the Fujifilm X Pro 1 launched, users had the option of a few small primes that are still well loved in the lineup. I’d love for a Canon full frame mirrorless to launch with a 28mm f2, 50mm f1.8, and an 85mm f1.8 in addition to a small zoom of some sort. It would get the system ready immediately out of the gate.

4K Video in a Number of Frame Rates

Canon’s explanation for not giving a lot of their cameras 4K video is because many bloggers don’t record in that format. Why? YouTube and other formats tend to do 720p and 1080p much better. But 4K video is important to a number of creators out there and a Canon full frame mirrorless should have it in 24p, 30p, and perhaps even 60p. This would be aided by the new DIGIC processor we mentioned earlier. Perhaps with a 50MP sensor, Canon may want to put two processors in the camera.

Don’t Find a Way to Intentionally Cripple Your Own Camera Just for Differentiation

Lastly, I’ve always felt that Canon has crippled their cameras just to differentiate them. I think that in a world where so many photographers can use their phones to create great images, Canon needs to take their gloves off. They need to do what they can to make the best damned camera they can and to fight back against many of their competitors. I just hope internal politics don’t screw this up. Canon is bound to create a great product; but what the product is vs what it could have been may be far different.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.