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Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018

Robbie Janney

It’s time for this year’s juicy camera conjecture. Here, we present your officially unofficial 2018 camera rumor roundup.

Every year, expectations run high for new camera releases, and this year is no different. As we’ve done in years past (20172016), we’ve rounded up the latest camera rumors of the past few months.

Last year, we saw the Canon C100 Mark III turn into the C200. We also saw the Sony a7R III and Panasonic GH5. There were even a few surprises, like the URSA Mini Pro and Sony CineAlta VENICE. So what does 2018 have in store? We don’t know, but here are the rumors (no promises).


Canon

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — Canon

Given Canon’s lackluster releases last year, and companies such as Sony and Panasonic hot on their heels, Canon is really going to have to make an impression this year. Hopefully, they realize that nobody wants a mirrored camera anymore. Full-frame mirrorless is the wave of the future, and Canon is going to have to acknowledge that someday. Here are the cameras that we think can keep them on top of the industry.

Canon 6K C500 Mark II

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — Canon 6K C500 Mark II
Image via Canon.

This is the biggest rumor I’ve heard about a Canon camera in some time, and it’s likely the most exciting for our audience. According to Canon Rumors, the new 6K Canon C500 Mark II (originally rumored to be the C900) camera will be the company’s rival to the Sony VENICE. There are also some rumblings that we may see some Canon anamorphic glass at NAB 2018.

Canon C500 Mark II rumored specs:

  • New full-frame 6K sensor.
  • EF and PL mounts (B4 Mount with Adapter).
  • 15+ stops of dynamic range.
  • Internal 6K up to 60 fps, 4K up to 120 fps.
  • Raw recording, XF-AVC, and ProRes.
  • Selectable gamma and LOG curves.
  • Canon Log, Canon Log 2, and Canon Log 3.
  • Announcement — Late 2018.

Canon C100 Mark III / Canon C300 Mark III

We’ve heard multiple reports of a new Cinema EOS at NAB. Don’t expect it to be the 6K C500, which seems to still be in development. That said, we could finally see a long-awaited update to the C100 line — or even a new C300.

Rumored Canon C300 Mark III specs:

  • 6K Super35 sensor.
  • Highest dynamic range of any Canon Cinema camera.
  • 180fps @ 2K.
  • 60fps @ 4K.
  • Internal RAW.
  • Pricing higher than C300 Mark II at launch.

(Via Canon Rumors.)

Rumored C100 Mark III specs:

  • 4K video recording up to 60fps.
  • 1080p up to 120fps.
  • Super 35mm CMOS sensor.
  • PL + EF Mount.
  • ISO 100-102,400.
  • CFast + SD card slots.
  • XF-AVC/MPEG-4 AVC/H.264/ProRes.
  • RAW capture with external recorder.
  • New anamorphic lens announced alongside its release.
  • To be announced in April (ahead of NAB).

(Via Rumors Dot Camera/Canon Watch /Additional Sources.)

Canon Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera

Canon has promised a huge announcement: a new Cinema EOS camera. If they want to compete with Sony’s A7R III, they need to release a full-frame mirrorless camera with an EF mount. Here’s what we think they might be brewing up at Canon Labs:

  • Full-frame mirrorless camera.
  • 4K video recording.
  • EF mount.
  • New prime lens.
  • LOG capture.

5DS R Mark II

The 5D sister cameras are expected to show up in the latter half of 2018, most likely at the Photokina Conference later this year. Possible specs:

  • Working prototypes are currently being tested.
  • The “5DS” series will become a single camera.
  • No low pass filter.
  • All new 60.1mp image sensor.
  • A new type of low megapixel mode.
  • 4K video (video is not a big part of the camera’s design).
  • Identical body to the EOS 5D Mark IV.
  • Focus-peaking present; may appear first on another DSLR.
  • Expect all the other features such as DPAF, Wi-Fi, touchscreen, and GPS.

(Via CanonRumors.)

Rumored 7D Mark III Specs:

1. Better AF tracking. Canon’s iTR technology has lagged behind competitors the past few years, and a 7D III needs to significantly improve in this area to remain competitive. Our ideal situation: the same AF system as 1DX Mark II, giving wide-frame coverage, like the Nikon D500.

2. Improved video. The 7D II‘s video was only a marginal improvement over the original 7D, which was several years older. A 7D III is almost guaranteed to have 4K video.

3. Improved base ISO raw dynamic range. Given that most Canon cameras introduced since the 7D II have offered improved Raw dynamic range, we think it’s pretty likely to be part of a 7D III.

4. Touchscreen. The 7D II added dual-pixel AF, which was a really significant addition, especially for video, but it was hobbled by the fact that you had to use hardware controls for doing things like initiating subject tracking. Given that most newer Canons do this as well, it’s pretty likely to be included in a hypothetical 7D III.

5. AF Auto Fine Tuning for Canon lenses with the ability to save multiple focal length adjustment values.

6. Built-in WiFi. There’s no excuse not to have wireless connectivity built-in in 2018. Bluetooth and NFC would be the cherry on top.

(via CanonRumors.)

*UPDATE*

CanonRumors.com has just confirmed that the upcoming Canon mirrorless camera, the EOS M50, will be arriving with 4K capabilities. Here’s the information we have so far:

We reported last month that the next mirrorless from Canon would shoot 4K video and it looks like we’ve confirmed that it will.

This would make the EOS M50 the first APS-C shooter in the Canon lineup to shoot 4K and adds a bit of credence to that special invite from one of Canon’s subsidiaries we were told about last month

The EOS M50 will remain an EF-M mount camera. Unfortunately, we have no other specifications at this time.

You can read more on CanonRumors.com.

 


Sony

Canon 6K C500 Mark II — Sony

Sony seems to have the market on lockdown with its line of consumer- and professional-grade cameras, but to stay on top, Sony is going to have to release some high-octane additions to their current lineup. After the release of the highly praised A7R III, the future looks bright for Sony — as long as they stay on track.

Sony A7S III

The Sony A7S II is a staple of modern cinematography — it’s the most rented mirrorless camera of 2017. It hit the market almost three years ago, so it’s about due for an upgrade. Here’s what we think the A7S III is going to offer:

  • Same 24-megapixel sensor as the Alpha A9.
  • Full-frame 6K sensor readout.
  • Same A9 PDAF.
  • 4:2:2 internal 10-bit.
  • 4K video at 60fps.
  • S-LOG and picture profiles.
  • Price below $3,000.
  • Advanced AF system.

(Via Mirrorless Times.)

Sony A7 III

  • New 24MP full-frame sensor.
  • The same Sony A9 autofocus system without the 20fps frame rate.
  • 3.0″ tilting LCD touchscreen.
  • 4K video recording.
  • Joystick control.
  • 6-7 fps shooting.
  • Improved AF (speed, accuracy, frame coverage, settings).
  • BSI sensor.
  • AA filter or global shutter in silent mode.
  • Faster EVF.
  • Better weather sealing.
  • Dual SD slots like Sony A9.
  • Price around $2000.
  • Built-in Wi-Fi/Bluetooth.
  • To be announced in 2018.

(Via Sony Camera Rumors.)

Sony Lens Rumors

  • Sony 135mm F1.8 FE.
  • Sony 20mm f/2.8 FE.
  • Sony 200-600mm lens.
  • Zeiss Batis and Loxia.
  • Sigma 35mm f/1.4 FE other FE lenses.
  • Voigtlander FE.
  • Tokina FE.
  • Samyang FE.

(Via Daily Camera News.)


Panasonic

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — Panasonic

GH5s

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — GH5s
Image via Panasonic.

This one’s not a rumor anymore: Panasonic announced the GH5s at CES this year. Here are the final specs:

  • 10.2MP multi-aspect sensor.
  • 4:3, 17:9, 16:9, and 3:2 aspect ratios.
  • 4K 60/50p recording in Cinema 4K (4,096 x 2,160).
  • Max ISO 51,200 ceiling.
  • Internal 4:2:2 10-bit recording with pre-installed V-Log.
  • Dual Native ISO Technology.
  • The 225-area AF arrangement and light levels as low as -5EV.

Fujifilm

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — Fujifilm

Fujifilm is a relatively new player in the mirrorless market, and with the success of the X-T2 a few years back, they seem to be making a steady run at the big dogs in the camera-sphere. We’ve heard that their supposed new camera, the X-H1, is going to take aim at the Panasonic Gh5’s consumer- and mid-level market share. Here are the rumored specs:

Fujifilm X-H1

(Specs via Fuji Rumors.)


Blackmagic Design

It’s another year of silence from Blackmagic on successors to their Pocket Cinema or Cinema camera lines. One can dream, and if our dreams did come true, here’s what we would want from those cameras:

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera II

  • 4K up to 30fps.
  • UltraHD Apple ProRes up 30fps.
  • 1080 up to 60fps.
  • 15+ Stops.

Blackmagic Cinema Camera II

  • 4K up to 60-120fps.
  • Apple Pro-Res up to 60fps.
  • 1080 up to 120fps.
  • Detachable LCD screen.

ARRI

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — ARRI

With ARRI’s recent release of the ARRI LF, along with their panel of 16 brand-new Signature Prime Lenses, they retain their standing in the professional-grade market. ARRI may have just released the new LF, but there are still rumblings that they have something else up their sleeves. Rumors suggest we may see a new 6K Alexa sensor at the end of 2018 or early 2019.


RED Cameras

Roundup: The Most Exciting Camera Rumors of 2018 — RED

RED Cameras has a reputation for releasing exciting, state-of-the-art cameras for professional cinematographers. Recently, they created a RED Dragon hybrid camera called the Xenomorph for David Fincher’s crew to use on Netflix’s crime-drama Mindhunter.

The one thing that has people talking when it comes to RED this year is their new cell phone, the RED HYDROGEN.

This is the phone that you might see in the pocket of your favorite cinematographer, and it is slated to come out this year. It’s rumored to control RED cameras wirelessly and display shots in real time — must-haves for RED junkies around the world.

*UPDATE*

There are rumors that RED Camera and Foxconn are cultivating a partnership to create RED’s first prosumer camera that shoots in 8K. Foxconn is a company that manufactures iPhones, as well as assembles ASIC / front-end LSI circuits for RED cinema cameras. The price speculation is around $2,000. Here’s a closer look from an article by Nikkei:

“We will make cameras that will shoot professional-quality films in 8K resolution but at only a third of current prices and a third of current camera sizes,” Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou told reporters in Taipei following the company’s annual employee party before the Chinese New Year. 8K ultra-high definition resolution has become the benchmark standard for digital television and cinematography.

Gou said he is in talks with RED Digital Cinema, whose cameras are used in the filming of such hit films and TV shows as Transformers and Netflix’s House of Cards, to form a joint venture or partnership to produce affordable cameras. A RED’s 8K camera now sells for around $30,000.

An affordable RED prosumer camera would certainly make big waves in the mid-priced camera market. With RED’s status in the cinema camera world, a step into this new market could ascend them into becoming one of the top players in the industry.

 


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