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Canon announces forthcoming EOS R1 flagship camera

The new EOS R1 should be released by the end of the year
2 minute read
The new EOS R1 should be released by the end of the year

Canon has revealed it is developing the new EOS R1 as the first flagship model for its EOS R system, featuring a new image processing system that further improves AF and image quality.

It won’t be ready till the end of the year, but Canon has announced it is currently developing the EOS R1, a full-frame mirrorless camera, as “the first flagship model” for the EOS R system equipped with RF mount.

We seem to be firmly getting back into an era where camera manufacturers are very keen to announce what they’re working on rather than what they are launching. Indeed, Canon did precisely this with the R3 back in 2021.

Canon is making some bold claims for the EOS R1, saying it “will dramatically improve the performance of both still images and video (in comparison to the EOS R3).” It’s an all-singing, all-dancing brief too, aimed at a fairly wide range of fields including sports, news reporting, and video production.

It is going to be based around the newly developed image processor DIGIC Accelerator in addition to the pre-existing processor DIGIC X. The new image processing system, composed of these processors and a new CMOS sensor, should enable a large volume of data to be processed at high speeds. Add in some deep learning tech and the company says it will deliver “never-before-seen advancements” in Auto Focus (AF) and other functions.

Subject tracking accuracy has been improved so that in team sporting events where multiple subjects intersect, the target subject can continually be tracked even if another player passes directly in front of them. In addition, the AF “Action Priority” function apparently recognises subject movement by rapidly analysing the subject’s status. Canon says that in moments during a sports game when it is difficult to predict what will happen next, this function automatically determines the player performing a certain action, such as shooting a ball, as the main subject and instantly shifts the AF frame, thereby helping photographers capture decisive moments of gameplay.

The EOS R1 will also implement an image noise reduction function, previously developed and improved as part of unspecified software for PCs, as a camera function to further improve image quality

Canon says it is currently working on field tests for this camera and will support capturing definitive and impactful moments at international sporting events to be held in the future. That is usually code for the Olympics (the IOC locking down any official mention of its name for most people that are not extremely major sponsors).

And, apart from Canon saying that it will continue to expand the EOS R SYSTEM lineup of cameras and RF lenses, that’s it for the detail, such as it is.

The R3 was $6000 when it launched, and was not touted as a flagship, so it’s reasonable to assume the price of this will be north of there. The company’s track record of delivering on such announcements is fairly good though, so we’re probably on a timeline of firm details after the Olympics and a release in time for the holiday season and those that can afford fairly expensive presents. 

Tags: Production Cameras Canon mirrorless