Canon Unveils 4K EOS C300 Mark II and Compact XC10 Camcorders



With NAB 2015 just around the corner, Canon has decided to kick the party off early by announcing two new 4K cameras: the Canon EOS C300 Mark II and the compact fixed-lens XC10. As the successor to the wildly popular EOS C300, the C300 Mark II sees several major improvements that raise it to the level of, or even surpassing, the C500. This includes internal 4K and UHD recording to CFast cards, 4K RAW output, and an OLED electronic viewfinder. These upgrades, among others, could help make the C300 Mark II even more ubiquitous on video productions than its esteemed predecessor. At the opposite end of the spectrum, the XC10 is a compact camcorder with a DSLR-esque shape, 1" CMOS sensor, and fixed 10x zoom lens. The camcorder aims at the prosumer-level market, being versatile enough to handle a wide range of applications from event work to use with handheld motorized gimbals or drones.

Canon EOS C300 Mark II

The EOS C300 Mark II takes the baton from the original C300 and keeps running. What will excite the most people will be internal 4K recording at either true DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) or Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) resolution, to appease both broadcast and cinematic shooters. The 4K CMOS sensor is equivalent in size to Super 35mm, and is driven by dual DIGIC DV 5 image processors. The camera is available in Canon EF or PL mount versions, depending on your lens preference. The benefit of the EF-mount version is that you can take advantage of Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology, which supports a variety of autofocus modes, including continuous AF and Face Recognition when used with compatible Canon EF lenses. The camera also sees a boost in its ISO range, now boasting a range of 160 to 25600 ISO (100 to 102400 ISO when sensitivity is expanded).

Rather than the dual Compact Flash card slots found on the original C300, the Mark II records to newer and faster CFast cards, which provide the speed required to handle high-bit-rate 4K recording. Video files still use MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 compression and the MXF file format, but you can now enjoy Intra frame 4K recording at up to 410 Mb/s. You can also enjoy Intra frame recording at 2K/1080p resolutions, as well as the broadcast-friendly LongGOP 50 Mb/s format. Lower bit-rate proxy files can be recorded to SD cards. Accompanying these internal recording options is the ability to output 4K raw video, a feature previously found only on Canon’s C500 Cinema EOS camera.

Physically speaking, the C300 Mark II does see some changes. While the EVF is now slightly smaller, at 0.46" (compared to 0.52” on the original C300), it now features a new OLED screen that should deliver rich blacks and accurate colors. The angle of the EVF is adjustable up and down 60 degrees and has a +2 to -5.5 adjustable diopter range to accommodate vision correction for most shooters. There has also been a slight tweaking of the button layout, with the most obvious being a large red Start/Stop button being placed low on the left side (operator’s side) of the camera, in a convenient position to press with your left hand.

Canon XC10 4K Camcorder


The XC10 is a unique camera that could easily find a home in the gear bags of consumers and professionals alike. Its body design, in many ways, is a hybrid between a DSLR, a palm-sized camcorder, and a Cinema EOS camera, equipped with a built-in 10x lens, flip-out 3.0" LCD touchscreen, and a 90-degree rotatable handgrip. The system is built around a 1" 4K CMOS sensor—which is quite large for a fixed-lens camera—and a DIGIC DV 4 processor that deliver 8-bit 422 video at resolutions up to Ultra HD at 24 and 30 fps (305 Mb/s). It can also capture 1080p video at 60 fps, 50 Mb/s, and 30/24 fps at 35 Mb/s.

On top of 4K video, the camera can also take 12-megapixel photos (4:3) and features common still-camera exposure modes, including Auto, program AE, shutter priority, aperture priority, and—of course—manual exposure. It is even possible to capture photos while simultaneously recording or playing back video. In these cases, the image size will be the same as the video resolution, so if you’re shooting UHD video, you can grab 8.29-megapixel images. 4K video is recorded to a CFast memory card, while HD video and photos are recorded to SD cards.

The built-in 10x Canon zoom lens is optimized for 4K video and provides a 35mm equivalent focal range of 27.3 to 273mm in video mode (24.1 to 241mm in 4:3 photo mode). It has a maximum aperture of f/2.8 at the wide end of the range and f/5.6 at the telephoto end. To help you capture smooth-looking handheld footage, the lens has built-in optical and digital image stabilization. Manual focus and zoom rings allow you to operate it just as you would any DSLR lens.

The XC10 offers a variety of picture profiles to select from, including the standard options you’ll find in the Cinema EOS line, such as Wide DR and even Canon Log. This makes the camcorder a great “B” camera for owners of Cinema EOS cameras, as you should be able to match the looks seamlessly. Of course, the camera is also a more-than-capable “A” camera for a variety of applications, such as documentary or live event work. It could also be an ideal pairing with handheld motorized gimbals or mounting on drones.

Connections on the XC10 include a hot shoe, HDMI output, USB port, microphone input, and a headphone jack. In terms of power, the camera uses the same LP-E6-type batteries common to Canon DSLRs like the 5D Mark II and 7D Mark II. When long continuous recording is needed, a DC power input powers the camera from an external. Other features include built-in dual band (5 GHz / 2.4 GHz) Wi-Fi and GPS support via the optional GP-E2 adapter.


"Connections on the XC10 include a hot shoe, HDMI output, USB port, microphone input, and a headphone jack"

Sounds like a DSLR to me.. and you could buy two Sony AX100's for the price of one of these. You can buy a PXW-X70 for $500 less and get ND's, dual XLR in, SDI out and a lens with a brighter aperture at the tele end and dual SD card slots..OK so it doesn't do 4K yet but it will...

I think the price will have to drop..



I believe the C300 mkii sensor is slightly larger than S35, and windows to give DCI 4K in traditional S35. In Canon's "walkaround" video the presenter even made reference to this, stating the extra room was 'interesing'. Will there be future support of the whole sensor for a wider FOV? This means I could use more of the glass in my full frame lenses, and truly increase image quality.


What a shame that there are so many snarky comments on these two great new cameras from Canon. It was a brilliant move on Canon's part to exclude an optical viewfinder from the XC10 4K camcorder, since any halfway decent viewfinder would have only driven up the price, and most serious shooters already have a good outboard viewfinder like the ones made by Alphatron, Cineroid, and others. The included HDMI port is a whole lot cheaper than even a cheap optical viewfinder, and as a professional, I hate paying for low quality accesories, (like inferior built-in viewfinders) that I will never use anyway. I'm looking forward to shooting with the XC10K as soon as it's available, and our Alphatron whould fit it quite nicely. As for the C300 Mark II, another brilliant move by Canon. There's a lot to be said for rock solid dependabilty in the field, and Canon does that really well. (Something some other companies mentioned above are still pursuing.) And as far as resolution is concerned, the numbers game is just that, a game. Most experienced cinematographers understand that "resolution" is only part of the picture. I recently saw some footage from a consumer "HD camera" shot at 1080p, that couldn't come close to the quality of our old professional SD cameras. The final image quality on the screen trumps any camera touting 5K 6K 10K etc. Why are big budget motion pictures still being shot on Arri Alexas which are only 2K? Because they look fantastic. Canons sensors, and image processing have been leading the pack for years. (Of course you could do better in terms of exposure lattitude if you want to spend $80,000+ for an Alexa.) Who cares about the numbers? Look at the image on the screen. Canon has always made beautiful pictures. I say bravo Canon. Keep up the good work. 

Due to your position, and cheerleading for these out dated and over priced Canon Cameras, you must be an employee of Canon! You can not qualify a C300 for $16,000.00, thats absolutely insanity.  More importantly, the consumers are the ultimate judge and jury of what is best, and what direction the market will go next!  Based on Canons Severe and Rapid decline in market share in the Consumer, Pro-consumer & Professional Camera divisions, its obvious they blown the confidence and loyalty of their core consumer base! The numbers from Canons quarterly reports, tell a disasterious story of customer defections and catastrophic profit margin reductions in sales!  That being said, the old system of stringing the customer out, and forcing the to buy new models with marginals improvements is over! Especially when thes new updated models are overly priced and still lagging behind their competitors old models from the previous 12-18months past.  If Canon doesn't stop being so greedy and slow, they will be the next Minolta, Bronica, Mamiya, and kodaks consumer film division.  Finished!

FYI: The movies that are actually still making money in the theaters are created predominately with Red 6k Dragon Epic cameras. The Movies you are refering to are going straight to video, Netflix, Hulu, etc. 

I’m not sure why you sound so angry. I am not now, nor have I ever been employed by Canon. (Although they have quite a bit of my hard earned money). I would have responded sooner, but I was out of town shooting with our Panasonic P2 camera. I have owned and shot award winning projects using professional level Sony, Panasonic, JVC, and Canon cameras.

You are entitled to your opinion that “consumers are the ultimate judge and jury of what is best” but if that were true, we would have a different president right now, Betamax would have surpassed VHS, and everyone in the country would be using Macs instead of Windows based computers. I have not looked at Canons Quarterly earnings, or any other report to tell me how they are doing in any particular department of their incredibly diverse business. That’s not how I choose professional equipment. Purchasing a camera or any other piece of production equipment is subjective, and determined to a large degree to the requirements of the project(s) for which it will be used. Image quality is always a strong consideration, as are, ergonomics, connectivity, size, weight, exposure latitude, lens mount, etc. None of these things just appear on a camera as it comes out of the hopper. Each element must be carefully designed to optimize its function, without compromising other important aspects of the camera. Tradeoffs between quality and cost, must be constantly evaluated. Size and shape, must be analyzed and balanced with function. And whether engineers and designers are paid hourly, daily or weekly, the more time it takes to “get it right” the more costly it becomes to create the final product. Other design considerations must take into account the manufacturing process. Making a camera more ergonomically sound, may involve more expensive and complicated manufacturing processes. Image sensor, image processing, and color science need to be selected or designed by another team of designers. All of these issues, and dozens more affect the final cost of the camera. (I won’t even start on marketing). To make a purchase decision based solely on 2K, or 4K is short sighted and amateurish at best. I have shot with a panasonic for years, because my P2 camera has some features that I need on certain projects. But I prefer the color rendition and overall look that I get from any of my Canon cameras. Obviously not everyone has the same budget, so if you can only afford a $1500 camera, a Panasonic GH4 might be the best choice for you. But if you are shooting high end commercials, or certainly features, and you show up with a GH4 as your “A camera”, you won’t be asked to come back. If you need to shoot single system sound, and you show up with a Panasonic GH4 or even a Canon 5D Mark II or 7D, you’ll be in trouble.

The Canon EOS Cinema cameras are designed for professionals who are willing to pay for the ergonomics, features, color science and image quality that they require to work confidently and efficiently under the time restraints imposed on them. I think they accomplish that extremely well.

As for your comment that the movies shot on either Canon EOS Cinema series cameras, or on Arri’s Alexa go straight to Netflix, Hulu, etc. I don’t think that any of these movies fall into that category:  Iron Man 1, 2, and 3, Skyfall, Fast and Furious, The Avengers, Captain America Winter Soldier, Gravity, Thor, The Lone Ranger, Zero Dark Thirty and many others.  Not to mention countless top rated TV shows and Network Commercials. I have nothing against Red Cameras, or any of the others you’ve mentioned, but the bottom line is, there is no such thing as the perfect camera. Every single one will have trade-offs that the operator will have to deal with accordingly. I personally like the way the EOS C cameras are put together, and I really like the image quality. Canons Digic DV image processors are phenomenal, and for a camera with everything offered in the C300 Mark II, including 15 stops of dynamic range, I think $16K is well worth it. That’s my opinion.

canon unfortunately it is not what it was before?
are not thinking about the customer

Is this a joke???  no 4k 60p, what a waste of time and money.  Is there no real life on this planet?  go back to 1940's qand watch the dumb flickering movies.   ooohh wait, the still have the 24fps flikering crap.

Let me know when it drops to about $1,200 and i'll pick one up!

If we can have the XC10 for $2,500, why not a version with EF mount changeable lens, cheaper than that????
I hope that this will be the next step, sooner than later, so I can use the good Canon glass I have for 4K videos.

I'm glad that Canon is finally releasing a 4K camera in this price range, but they are still missing some key points...

No comments about the C300 MK II... Out of reality!!!

This is a camcorder... different group at Canon. This is fixed lens at $2500 just like the XF300 is fixed lens at $4000. Canon believes this will bring in Canon camcorder shooters looking at similarly priced 4K fixed lens camcorders from Sony or JVC... I think the styling may be meant to evoke the C-series (thus XC), since Canon's apparently pretty succesful there, and even with just a 1" sensor, this is the only large(ish) sensor camera in Canon's traditional camcorder line. But definitely consistent with models in the XA and XF series.

And you're definitely not supposed to think of the Panasonic LX100 or GH4.. those are still cameras with video, not camcorders.

For that price I want interchangeable lenses


Cchainsmoke wrote:

For that price I want interchangeable lenses

agreed...who are they targeting with this?  Tough enough as it is to stay up with the technology AND the pricing.  Have been a Canon diehard for so many years (and yet I just purchased the 5d Mark III).  Can only shake my head and look at pausable alternatives.

It's an X-series Canon, the camcorder market. Same people using traditional camcorders like the XA10 or XF105. A very competitive option to Sony's AX100. The DSLR world is a completely different one, and while I admit I haven't used my pro Panasonic gear as much since Canon got serious about DSLR video, not everyone wants to deal with the DSLR workflow: non-standard video formats, expensive and really short zoom lenses, no power zoom, no XLR jacks, no timecode, no SDI output, few dedicated buttons, etc. Remains to be seen if this one is a bit TOO DSLR-inspired for this market, or how real that market still is. But that's the clear rationale.

I have been a die hard Canon advocate for over 10 years.  Since the 5D Mark II revolutionized film making, and made story telling accesssible to the masses. Canon has consistantly dropped the ball, and have fallen far behind the competition in pricing, features, and bringing relevant products to market in a timely manner. The Canon EOS C300 Mark II is severly over priced and 8 months to a year to late! Also its 10 times the price of Panasonics GH4, WHY?  The Canon EOS C300 Mark I, should have had all the features that the Mark II is coming out with a year too late!

 I would never consider spending $16,000.00 dollars for a 4k camera that can not compete with the entry level Red Scarlet Dragon which is 5-6K, at the same price. Also the Canon EOS C300 Mark II,  can't be upgraded, and forces Canon customers to buy yet another camera at full price when 5-6k becomes the norm. Black Magic New 4K Camera is modular to a degree, Sensor upgradable, for under $6000 dollars!   Its insane for Canon to believe that this backward strategy will continue to work. Canons entire leadership needs to be terminated for losing their lead position on in this Cinamatic revolution they started, by accident. Now they add insult to injury with this severly over priced camera, thats already obsolete before it reaches the selves of retailers!  I have sold all of my canon cameras, due to dissappointment and total lack of confidence in the Canon Brand, I use to love! 



While you may be right about Canon to a degree the C100, 300 and 500 have been enormously popular for budget film makers because they:

a: Accept most EF lenses and give you electronic control over them. This is the primary reason many stick to Canon - a huge existing stock of quality glass b: great color science and dynamic range with C log c: a fairly traditional cinema form factor d. very good (if not exceptional) low light performance and e: all three cameras have the same "look" so mixing and matching footage from a budget C100 with a fully blown C500 is doable.

For all the promises of RED setting up a full kit will cost you a LOT more than $16K (you do get a lot of camera for that). FWIW I primarily shoot on a Sony FS700 and I don't use Canon but you'd have to be a little biased not to recognise they have a good product offering, if a little overpriced for my end of the market.

XC10 is worthless without changeable lenses!  12mp stills is not acceptable.  I'll stick with Panasonic for my 4k video! 

You are tight about the lens but please, your Panasonic is scaled, all the Panasonic are scaled becuase isen't 4k natively aditional use very tiny sensor micro 4/3 and when is in video mode use a lil bit part of that sensor come on!

The 4/3" sensor is, pretty obviously, much larger than the 1" sensor in the XC10. Neither are scaling the image, they both use an 8Mpixel 1:1 crop for video. The Canon sensor is actually a 13.36" sensor at 1, so you're cropping even for the still frame 4000x3000 (104mm^2), the video crop for QFHD is the expected 3840x2160 (72mm^2).

The larger 4/3, 16Mpixel sensor on the GH4 has a native resolution of 4608x3456 (225mm^2). This allows it to support both the QFHD/UltraHD 3840x2160 (117mm^2) mode offered by the XC10, and the DCI 4K standard mode of 4096x2160 (125mm^2), both with no pixel scaling and more sensor area (larger pixels) than the new Canon. But the GH4 is recording 4:2:0 4K at 100Mb/s long GOP AVC, the XC10 records 4:2:2 QFHD at 305Mb/s in AVC Intra... so the XA10 will outperform the GH4 at 4K for fast motion video and color sensitive things like chromakey. And also, faster editing (the GH4 offers AVC Intra recording, but only for HD video). The GH4 can deliver 10-bit 4:2:2 to an external recorder.

What is the longest continuous exposure one can make with either of these cameras?

Richard Walker, M. Ed

Big Bear Studio



Hi Richard -

Either of these cameras will record continuously to the maximum available capacity offered by the memory card or external recorder.

Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:  [email protected]

Poor or good glass lens? 

will be nice with zeiss lens. 


I went to a seminar recently which used two of these cameras and if I recall correctly ... does have interchangeable lenses. I was told they use the same EOS mount as the still cameras Canon has like the 5D. Those lenses are a LOT less to buy or rent than some of the proprietary stuff out there. If I'm wrong and it's a fixed lens on those cameras ... NO WAY because I would not pay fifteen grand for something you can't change lenses on it. Remember ... only professionals are going to blow that much money on a camera setup.

The  Canon XC10 incorporates a 10x f/2.8 to 5.6 SLR-style manual zoom lens with auto and manual focus capability.  It is not removable from the camera.  The Canon EOS C300 Mark II offers lens interchangeability. The camera is available in Canon EF or PL mount versions, depending on your lens preference. The benefit of the EF-mount version is that you can take advantage of Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology, which supports a variety of autofocus modes, including continuous AF and Face Recognition when used with compatible Canon EF lenses.
Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:  [email protected]

OK -- sounds great on first take - ( C300 MK II)  - but why not recording to .MOV files - so easy to work with/edit, etc.  -- why another Canon proprietary codec (?) - not sure here -- and no mention of HDMI out recording - to another device like Shogun or Convergent Designs !?  Not too late to add this option ?? -- Please - we all would love it !  No mention of date availability !?  Would we have to wait almost a full year -- as in the case of JVC LS300 ?

Optical Viewfinder?  If No........NO SALE!

Hi Michael -

This new camera is offering an OLED EVF 1024 x 576. 

Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:  [email protected]

The MXF file wrapper, a SMPTE standard, is the industry standard in pro video. It's used on Sony, Panasonic, JVC, and all pro-level Canon camcorders. AVC is the most-used format for recording and delivery today. NeIthers of these are going to be a problem. MOV/Quicktime is an Apple proprietary format and really doesn't belong on any hardware, but particularly pro-level gear.

Amen!  They can keep their Apple Junk!

Hi Russ -

Dave's got it right.  Canon is offering a professional codec that has been adopted by industry professionals world-wide.  Why they decided this is only for Canon to say, but the codec is robust, reliable, and stable for major post production work.  Live HDMI recording to an ATOMOS  or similar recorder is possible. Unfortunately, we do not have a firm date from Canon on the what the delivery of this camera will be.  September 2015 is my best guesstimate.

Please contact us via e-mail if you have additional questions:  [email protected]