New from Canon: EOS C300/C300 PL Cinema Cameras

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The following is a press release from Canon Inc. and Canon USA:

Canon Inc. and Canon U.S.A., Inc. today raised the curtain on an all-new interchangeable-lens digital cinema camera that combines exceptional imaging performance with outstanding mobility and expandability to meet the demanding production needs of today's motion picture industry. The camera, which features a newly developed Super 35 mm-equivalent approximately 8.29-megapixel CMOS sensor, will be available in two models: the EOS C300 Digital Cinema Camera*, equipped with an EF lens mount for compatibility with Canon's current diverse lineup of interchangeable EF lenses for EOS single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras and new EF Cinema Lens lineup; and the EOS C300 PL Digital Cinema Camera, with a PL lens mount for use with industry-standard PL lenses.

    

The introduction of the EOS C300/C300 PL coincides with the launch of the Cinema EOS System, marking Canon's full-fledged entry into the digital high-resolution production industry. The new professional digital cinematography system spans the lens, digital cinema camera and digital SLR camera product categories.

Star-Studded Supporting Cast

Equipped with an EF lens mount, the EOS C300 is supported by an all-star cast of high-performance EF lenses, not only the wide array of interchangeable EF lenses for EOS SLR cameras that have earned the trust and respect of photographers around the world, but also the EF cinema lenses in the newly announced Cinema EOS System. When outfitted with a Canon EF lens, the C300's peripheral illumination correction automatically corrects for vignetting in accordance with each lens's optical characteristics, and enables iris control from the camera. Canon EF lenses also enable the recording of such metadata as the name of the lens used, aperture setting and shutter speed.

Show-Stopping High-Resolution Full-HD Performance

The Canon EOS C300/C300 PL's newly developed Super 35 mm-equivalent CMOS sensor incorporates approximately 8.29 million effective pixels and has a pixel size that is larger than that for conventional professional camcorders, enabling greater light-gathering capabilities for enhanced sensitivity and reduced noise. The sensor reads Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) video signals for each of the three RGB primary colors, decreasing the incidence of moiré while realizing high resolution with 1,000 horizontal TV lines.

          

Supported by a heightened signal read-out speed, the CMOS sensor reduces rolling shutter skews, a phenomenon prevalent with CMOS sensors in which fast-moving subjects may appear diagonally distorted. Additionally, the powerful combination of the sensor with Canon's high-performance DIGIC DV III image processor facilitates high-precision gamma processing and smooth gradation expression.

In addition to MPEG-2 Full HD (MPEG2 422@HL compliant) compression, the EOS C300/C300 PL employs 4:2:2 color sampling for high-resolution performance that minimizes the appearance of "jaggies" at chroma edges. Additionally, with a maximum recording rate of 50 Mbps, the camera supports the recording of high-quality video.

The camera's video and audio recording file format adopts the industry-standard MXF (Material eXchange Format), an open source file format ideally suited for non-linear editing systems. Recording to versatile, readily available CF cards, the EOS C300/C300 PL realizes high cost-performance and, equipped with two CF card slots, makes possible the simultaneous recording of video data to two CF cards.

Ready for Action

With a compact body design measuring 5.2 (w) x 7.0 (h) x 6.7 (d) inches, the Canon EOS C300/C300 PL delivers exceptional maneuverability, enabling shooting from vantage points all but inaccessible to large cinema cameras, such as close to the ground for high-impact low-angle shots, and alongside walls. In accordance with on-location shooting needs, the camera can be outfitted with a handle, grip, thumb rest and monitor unit, and offers an array of industry-standard terminals, including HD/SD-SDI video output for the external recording of high-quality video content. When using a WFT-E6B wireless file transmitter for EOS digital SLR cameras (sold separately), the EOS C300/C300 PL can be controlled remotely by means of such common devices as smartphones or tablet PCs.

The camera is equipped with four start/stop buttons positioned at various locations to satisfy any preferred camera-holding style, and can be outfitted with a variety of third-party accessories, including matte boxes, follow focuses and external video and audio recorders. The unit also achieves seamless integration with third-party editing systems and provides added peace of mind through its dust-proof, drip-proof construction and built-in cooling system.

The new camera allows users to adjust image quality to match that of professional camcorders and EOS-series digital SLR cameras, and offers Canon Log Gamma, enabling flat image quality with subdued contrast and sharpness for maximum freedom in post-production editing and processing. In addition to frame rates of 59.41i, 50.00i, 29.97P, 25.00P and 23.98P, the EOS C300/C300 PL features a 24.00p mode, matching the 24 frame-per-second frame rate of film cameras for high compatibility with common film-production workflows.

Other features include fast-motion shooting, achieved by capturing fewer frames per second to create action up to 60x normal speed, and slow-motion down to 1/2.5x made possible by capturing more frames per second. Frame rates between 1 and 60 frames per second (fps) can be adjusted in increments of 1 fps. Additionally, a selection of Custom Pictures lets users freely adjust image quality for greater control over how content looks.

Hands-On Review

To supply you with even more details regarding this new camera, we'd like to show you our hands-on review of the Canon EOS C300. To watch the video, please click here

Pricing and availability

The Canon EOS C300 (EF mount) digital cinema camera is scheduled to be available in late January 2012 for an estimated list price of $20,000. The Canon EOS C300 PL (PL mount) digital cinema camera is scheduled to be available in late March 2012 for an estimated list price of $20,000.

For more information, and to view Canon's online demonstration footage of the new products, please visit: http://cinemaeos.usa.canon.com/

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When will guys start taking orders?

Hello,

Canon USA has not given us a definitive date. Canon’s press release says, “scheduled to be available in late January 2012,”We will of course post any updates and availability as soon as we know anything. 

Here is the link to the EF and the PL models, current pricing can be found there:

Canon C300

It's too bad Canon had to jack the price up so high that they will lose a big part of the market.  This camera is not worth $20K.  Sorry.   

Agreed..  Don't know what the heck they are thinking.  With the tech clearly there in the DSLR, why not give us that prosumer product to replace things like the XHA1s or the XL.  Definitely not worth the 20k price tag.  Pass!

That's what the xf100-105 and xf300-305 are for.

Those are fine cameras, but what we've all been waiting for is the large sensor and film like depth of field.

What about the Sony F3?

Agreed. Might as well save up for a red camera if this costs 20k.

I think the larger budget films that would normally shoot 5d, especially for it's size will undoubtably invest in the c300. 

Only 1080p 30fps for $20,000 and the lens are another $45,000!

Compare this to the 7D 1080p and 720p 60fps $2000.

All the footage out there clearly show that in talented hands the 7d will get the same quality as C300 at a fraction of the price.

The C300 camera is worth <$10k with lens. 

Agree... this camera should have a range price of 8K to 10K max.... its just another 5D mkII with some plug options like the XLR and the ND filter... and those conection cost 16.5K? Canon is not thinking right and may loose market share... I bet if Nikon come out with a N707 Cinema Camera for even 12K will kill canon dreams! Buggers!

Not worth $20.000?  Based on what?  Why?

Totally agree. The RedOne is $25,000. The 5D mk 2 is $2199. The 1D-X will be around $8,000. 

Looking at the figures frankly, If I had the money to go for $20,000, I'd just go all out and get a Red. If I didn't want to spend that much, I'd go for a 5 or 1 series and spend the extra on really great glass.

Unless I had a heap of high quality EF lenses already, I can't see an argument for going with the C300.

Really stupid and I think Canon will reget it.

I dont know what part of the industry you work in, but...Its horses for courses mate, dslr for filming mainstream tv, mostly useless [i have done it] and not accepted.

Red does not work for most mainstrean tv production [docs, reality, run and gun, factual], generally not the way forward for reasons i should not have to point out [but some are ,lenses etc rental cost, amount of data created, heavy post cost compared to other cameras]

c300, awesome for a shed load of productions, Scarlet, awesome for whats its made for.......

The industry has waited for years for these cameras, dont knock them, just choose wisely!! its not hard.

I use all hd cameras large and small, and red, alexa, phantom, and  love the 1d mk4, all have have their place as no one makes the all singing, all dancing camera sadly.

No thanks. I'm waiting for the 5D markIII.

So will many others that can't afford this camera. It's a cinema video camera not a DSLR. It's by no means even supposed to be a replacement for the 5D. There is a reason it cost $20k and anyone with a piggy bank can purchase a 5D.

No Thanks, Ill take a Red One with accesories for the same price.

Get two. You'll need a backup. :)

Real talk ;)

Me too!

Can we sign up to an email alert to receive the news when the C300 camera is available for pre-order?

Hello -

When the product is actually posted on the B&H company website's product page there will be a a box labeled "Notify When In Stock".  You will then  be able to click on it  for an e-mail notification.  When pre-ordering becomes available that wil be published on the camera's product page as well.

Does it output 4k, or is the sensor just 4k and it outputs 1080p?

Hello -

This camera will output a maximum resolution of 1080p.

So it captures 4K but can only output 1080P in a compressed MPEG2 codec for $20k, when you can get a RED Scarlet X Canon Mount Package that can output RAW Uncompressed 5K video for $14k????

Canon, sorry, but you missed your price point on this one...I'll stick with my 7D, thanks.

So it only output 1080P in a compressed MPEG2 codec for $20k, when you can get a RED Scarlet X Canon Mount Package that can output RAW Uncompressed 5K video for $14k????

Canon, sorry, but you missed your price point on this one...I'll stick with my 7D, thanks.

the Red Scarlet looks comparable, but that's only for the body. Costs close to $20k to get it with everything you need to be able to shoot.

I want to buy Canon EOS C300 as soon as it arrives. Please let me know as you start booking.
Thanks

Hello,

Great, watch our site, we will post any availability as soon as we know anything.

How does the XF300 compare to this? I know the XF300 is ENG, but...

It is hard to compare the XF300 with the C300 as they are very different cameras that suit different applications.

The C300 has the Super 35mm sensor giving a higher video quality than the XF300 and the interchangable cine or SLR lenses which will allow for a shallow depth of field. So in image quality alone the C300 will be much better than the XF300.

That being said, going back to what you are using the camera for the XF300 could be a better camera for you due to usability. The C300 is a cine style camera; the XF300, as you stated is an ENG video camera. Capturing action or doing event video, you would want to choose the XF300 due to the video camera style zoom and auto focus features but if your goal is for film production the C300 will suit you very well.  

I was asking because I have seen crews using the XF300 for film also. I guess the C300 would be much better if you value the 20K.

You can definitely use the XF300 to shoot a film but the C300 or other cine style cameras will have a more film like feel than a video camera like the XF300 will due to the sensor and the lenses that they use.

$20,000 and no XLR inputs?  When are these moronic designers at Canon going to enlist an actual camerman to aid in their design?  This whole phase of buying extra components to do the same job that a camera should be built to do is moronic.  Explain to me how this design can be used out of the box and ready without paying another arm and a leg to just hold the camera and operate it?  Flawed in every way.

It has 2 XLR inputs and a shotgun mount - they're on the included top piece that is removable.

"In addition to the core camera body, it comes with a removable hand grip, low angle camera handle extension, and removable LCD Monitor and control panel with XLR inputs. It also integrates seamlessly with the equipment typically in use on sets every day – dollies, tripods, rail systems, matte boxes, follow focus gear, external monitors – so shooting options are never limited by the camera."

The design seems to be more for setup users, rather than run-and-gun users.  I'd love a stable shoulder mounted DSLR camera out of the box for a prosumer price. All integrated... all one piece... throw on your shoulder, snap on a tripod.  Those two core tactics is what I think is missing.  Let's keep praying.

There's a lot of crying going around on here huh Cenzo. This camera is not for you, move on.

lol...you obviously don't realize that in a real production especially a film shoot, capturing audio externally is most ideal. Sounds like you come from the ENG side of camera ops which is fine just keep in mind that this camera is more of a cinestyle configuration and thats the way things are done in this world. I would much rather have the option of what type and brand of audio equipment my production requires rather than having to settle for what the standard on board camera may be manufactured with, just saying...

"real production" LOL... I've been in both worlds where setups can take 5 hours before you even shoot and in situations where you need to just grab a camera and go.  Whether this camera is built for that or not is my concern.  When you buy a camera, you should get all the components to use that camera.  I video tape performances, concerts, night clubs, restaurants, businesses... and I would prefer a cinema style without the need to purchase an entire rig or audio config.  I can't operate with a seperate audio guy. It's basic camera operation that needs to be provided, and from what I see... there is not much out there for a quick shoulder mounting shoot that has amazing DOF and low light performance.  I'm waiting on a one package inexpensive prosumer camera.  When I heard Canon was coming out with a dedicated DLSR video cam I was excided... and to see this... is very disappointing.

And quite frankly, saying the way you work is "real production" and the way things are done in this world is quite disheartenting to those that do ALL aspects of production.  We all don't live in your style world. Comprende?

Cenzo, If you are that upset- Do not buy it-  I will look for you at the next DGA and Local 600 Guild meetings and we can compare notes on "real world"

Comprende?

@Cenzo: "I've been in both worlds where setups can take 5 hours before you even shoot and in situations where you need to just grab a camera and go.  Whether this camera is built for that or not is my concern"

It's not. That point was made abundantly clear. You don't use this camera to shoot weddings or birthday parties. It's really not rocket science.

I want an affordable run and gun camera that fits the industry standards. I agree sound, the ability to shoot quickly, and to do post seemlessly are important to me. Is this camera for me. At 13k I would buy it. Since I have a XL1 and I loved that camera, now I am looking to do more features. Love the run and gun approach.

Hate having to buy additional stuff to get the real look as advertized. I want an out of the box professional cam. Is this it,or should I just wait?

By the Way I agree with cenzo

Singleton

I emailed Canon with these questions but did not get a reply. Perhaps you know:

1. Will the Image Stablizer function on Canon EF lenses work with this camera?

2. Will it be possible to mount currently available PL lens adapters onto the EF-mount version of the camera?

3. I've read that the SDI out is 8-bit, not 10-bit. Can you confirm this?

Thank you!

1: The image stabilization is built into the Canon lenses so it will work with the C300 as all it needs is the power from the camera.

2: The EF mount is a standard so any mount adapters for EF will work.

3: The SDI output signal is 8 bit.

I heard that there could be potential focusing problems when using an EF to PL mount adapter on the EOS 300 EF, and that is the reason why Canon made a PL version of the camera.  Is this true?

Hello,

Officially, we are not aware of why Canon made an EF and PL mount camera. Technically speaking a PL mount lens used with an adapter on an EF body will focus correctly.

PL mount lens are made for film making where precision adjustments and settings are required for predictable and most importantly repeatable results. While using an adapter will suffice, a professional camera operator will prefer to use PL lens mounted directly on to a PL body there-by eliminating the chance or source of error.

Seriously they emitted one major feature with this camera - it cant over crank to 60fps @1080p. For a Camera of this cost thats a big mistake. We are in the market and had our cheque books out but thats a deal breaker in our line of work. Going to have to wait or buy a Red Scarlet. If you guys have any clout with Canon then tell them they need to fix this in the next model pronto or when they bring out the 4k DSLR.

I'm very excited about this cine camera. Does it also take still photos? I do landscape filming but also like to have still images with the wonderful camera. please advise. Thanks. Dan

The C300 doesn't shoot still photos, it's designed specifically for recording video.

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