New from Canon: EOS C300/C300 PL Cinema Cameras


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:

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When will guys start taking orders?

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.

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

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

Real talk ;)

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

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

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.

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

$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. 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"


@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


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?


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.

The Canon C300 is designed specifically for recording video, so it can record still images only in HD mode into the SD card.

Hello -

 This wonderful cine- type  video camera will shoot gorgeous video only  and is not designed for still photography capture. Please follow the link below for more details regarding this exciting new product:

Not sure if someone answered this already - it does shoot stills but only at HD resolution.

Hello, I am not sure if I missed it somewhere, Is the C300 PAL & NTSC? Is is like Sony Cine Alta with both options, or like the FS100U with just one or the other?


The camera is switchable NTSC/PAL. Will shoot 60i, 50i, 24p and 25p.

It is SWITCHABLE from NTSC to PAL in the Menu. So WE Europeans CAN BUY with complete confidence from B&H New York - super news for me as a BRIT - destined to BUY from B&H.

Has anyone done a quick side by side with the Panasonic AG-AF100?

Hello -

Great suggestion for a possible article for "B&H In Depth" once we obtain a camera from Canon for a hands-on evaluation.

Given the huge difference in price between these two cameras we expect the Canon to surpass the Panasonic on many levels.  That said, these cameras are targeted at  two  different market segments and probably not intended to compete directly with each other.


The Canon C300 and Panasonic AG-AF100 share 2 distinct characteristics: they are both large sensor camcorders and have the ability to use interchangeable lens.

The AGAF100 only captures in AVCHD which is a format that has risen up from consumer grade cameras and now is incorporated into quite a few pro level cameras.

AVCHD is 4:2:0 and strips out quite a bit of information to keep the file size small and typically has to be converted to other file formats before it can be edited. AVCHD is a highly compressed file format which will require computer horsepower when opening.


·        AF100’s 4/3-inch sensor affords depth of field and field of view similar to that of 35mm movie camera

·        Low cost camcorder

·        Can use low cost 4/3’s lenses.

·        Can also use Hollywood studio PL lenses with adapter: 

·         Records compressed  4:2:0 and outputs  / Uncompressed 4:2:2, 8 Bit HD-SDI Output

·        Records in 1080 (60i, 50i, 30p, 25p and 24p native) and 720 (60p, 50p, 30p, 25p and 24p native, utilizing AVCCAM’s highest-quality PH mode (maximum 24Mbps)

The new Canon C300 uses a Super 35 mm CMOS sensor with a DiG!C DV III processor. It takes Canon EF Cinema Zoom and Prime Lenses plus an existing cadre of highly regarded EOS lenses. There is also a PL version which will take PL mount lens natively with no sensor crop.

Canon's MXF file is not highly compressed and is easy to work with while allowing you to capture video in a very high quality 4:2:2 color sampling.  

Canon Says -

" With 4:2:2 color sampling and a maximum Full HD 1920x1080 resolution and up to 50 Mbps bit rate, the EOS C300 achieves the highest HD Quality. "

The C300 35mm Canon sensor is much larger than the AGAF100's micro 4/3's sensor.   


·        Super 35mm Canon CMOS sensor with a high dynamic range and 160000 ISO

·        Built for Hollywood level production

·        Modular and adaptable it is compatible with virtually every cinema lens in production today

·        50 Mbps 4:2:2 codec,

·        DIGIC DV III Image Processor reduces moiré and rolling shutter issues.

·        SMPTE HD standards, MPEG-2 codec compatible with major NLE applications

·        The EF mount can use al of Canon's lenses, great for the photographer who has a large collection

·        The PL model can use the Hollywood studio level production lenses

·        Multiple recording formats. Slow motion and time lapse also

Bottom line

The C300 because of its big, Super 35mm sensor will best answer the needs of someone needing the best, most Hollywood studio style image. It will do so at considerably less cost than Hollywood studio camera equipment.

The AG-AF100 is perfect for the filmmaker who wants a high quality image but at remarkably affordable cost due in part to the slightly smaller 4/3’s sensor.

So i guess instead of comparing the Canon EOS C300 with the Panasonic AG-AF100 we should compare it with the Sony PMW-F3K. Could you please tell me what´s the difference between the Canon EOS C300 with the Sony PMW-F3K then? I wanna buy one of those 2 cameras but haven´t decided yet. Which one is better? Thanks.

Depends on if you're recording in-camera vs. an external recorder like the Ki Pro Mini, and if you're paying extra for the F3 S-Log or not. Vincent Laforet in his blog stated:

"I have done side by side tests w/ the F3 and C300 WITHOUT decks and I would definitely go w/ the C300. BUT -not w/ the decks." Why is the F3 better once a deck is added? Because the F3 is 10-bit out to a deck while the C300 is 8-bit out. That extra leeway in post is the deciding factor between two cameras with great images. If you opt for the S-Log, I suspect the F3 will have superior dynamic range, plus being 10-bit. Hands-down winner. I think a deck is mandatory with either of these cameras on a high-end shoot. 50mbps isn't nearly as good as ProResHQ for serious compositing and color-correction. Why get a great camera and then not use it to its real potential? I'm going F3.

Thanks a lot.

Isn´t the Sony F3 records max up to 35mbps in HQ 1080p? I´ve been reading about the S-Log but what is it exactly about it?

35mbps is the internal codec. That's why you need an external deck like the Ki Pro Mini. S-Log in a nutshell changes the gamma curve of the recorded image, allowing for 14 stops of latitude and recording usable information in the darks and highlights. It initially looks dim and flat, but when you color correct it, you have amazing latitude to shape the brightness and contrast of the image how you want it, without blowing out highlights or losing too much in the shadows. Google Sony S-Log videos for examples.

Yeah ive been watching some vids about it... its basically (thats how i understand it to make it simple) a filter that corrects the gamma color right? for example the RedOne records in an option of hdrx capturing different exposures to get a great quality picture in a very high dynamic range. Now whats the price of a Ki Pro Mini (is it like a external drive?) so using that i can get more mbps at the time of recording? isnt the Sony F3 uncompressed 4:2:2 ? and 10bits? or just 8bits? D:

Thanks a lot.

Canon ,I need tell some thing here,because this camera is over priced,50mbps 4:2:2 , 1080p only for 30fps camcorder is 20k,think first who going to buy,can't do any slow motion,no RAW recording only 1080p,for me ,20k I can buy RED SCARLET with all accessories ,I can record 4k raw,if u wanna record 1080p just connect a Atomos Samurai to Scarlet then you will get 10bit prores 4:2:2,Your camera is only 8 bit Canon only 8bit.Then who going to care about your sensor is 4k, but only give us 8bit 1080p,Then better buy Sony fs100 can over crank it, the prise is 5k ,or F3 atleast you get 10bit output,now this days RED footage EASLY edit with Adobe CS5 like butter,no Red rocket needed,you will get all RAW possibility there,Only one think I can agree with C300, it has a good low light capability,for that purpose I don't know who going to spent 20k ,good low light camera is available in market only for is Sony FS100.connect with Atmos Samurai u will get uncompresed prores4:2:2 ,