Full Confirmation: The Canon EOS R3 Sensor Is Canon’s

We’re streaming daily on Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherPocket Casts, and Spotify! You can also listen to it right here on The Phoblographer.

We’ve been very confused about the sensor in the Canon EOS R3 for a while. We’ve reported on this a few times. There have been a lot of changes to the language of the sensor. Apparently, it was copy-editing errors more than anything else. Canon has said before that it’s their sensor, according to a few sources. But Canon has finally put an attributable source to their quotes on the Canon EOS R3 sensor. 

So here’s the official quote with attribution:

“The sensor in the upcoming EOS R3 is Canon designed and manufactured.”

Drew MacCallum, Advisor, Technical Information, Canon USA

And there we have it. We work extra hard to get traceable sources for our quotes for authenticity. There’s a ton of hearsay on the internet right now, so we feel it’s imperative to find out the facts. Drew, who our team has worked with many times, is attributing this quote to himself. When I asked if Canon was saying that the Canon EOS R3 sensor is a 24MP sensor, I was told that this is all Canon is saying right now. 

After speaking with our reps at Canon, I see where things went a bit awry. The Canon EOS R3 has dual pixel AF, and it should’ve been apparent then that it’s a Canon sensor. But we, the journalists on the other side, can’t always be sure of that. I mean, you wouldn’t say that the Fujifilm X Trans sensor is a Fuji sensor. It’s made by Sony. There’s a huge difference between a sensor designed by a company and a sensor designed and manufactured by a company. 

Nikon designs their own sensors, Sony makes them.

Samsung designs and manufactures its own sensors in its cameras.

Panasonic designs their sensors. Sony makes them.

Leica designs their sensors. Tower Jazz makes them. This is one of the big exceptions in the photo world.

Sony designs and manufactures the sensors in their cameras.

Ever since the major tsunamis in the past decade, camera manufacturers have been using Sony sensors. Sony has also gobbled up a few other companies too. That’s resulted in lots of companies basically having iterations of the same image quality. The photo industry really needs a lot more variety for what it’s worth. Years ago, you could see the differences between images from a Kodak, Sony, and Canon sensors. But Kodak isn’t around and making imaging sensors anymore. Too bad, too! I think they could come back and make some great CCD cameras.

This is important too, because different looks can render differently on various sensors. For example, the look of Kodak Ektachrome on a Nikon Z7 II vs. a Fujifilm X Pro 3 is like night and day. But maybe it boils down to how one camera can do a look at the other can’t. Variety is the spice of life.

This is where it all becomes apparent, and if anything, it excites us more about the Canon EOS R3. We’re not seeing the same sensor recycled over and over again. And of course, it’s not at all the same technology. There are things like dual pixel AF, performance enhancements on the AI, Eye autofocus, etc. 

Chris Gampat

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