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Canon EOS-1D X

Canon EOS-1D X

Canon, never one to shy away from confusing product names, has announced their latest flagship camera – the *1D X. The web is already becoming inundated with information.

CPN Europe has a lot of information including a 12-page technical paper.

Canon Japan has a short film made with the camera which includes stills and video. At the very end it lists which lenses were used and what ISOs were utilized.

The camera looks to be intriguing, interesting, and a bit of a challenge to or, maybe better put, a practical recognition of shooters needs. For the first time Canon is lowering the megapixel count of its flagship model, in this case from 21mp to 18mp. This is being done in favor of lower signal to noise ratios and it should add another 2 stops of range over the Canon 1D Mark IV.

The 1D X is also a merging of Canon’s two pro lines, the 1D series and the 1Ds series. Canon themselves foretold this a couple of years ago – saying that once processing speed allowed there would no longer be a need for a sports optimized camera and a studio optimized camera.

Having shot with both the 1Ds Mark III and the 1D Mark IV I can see the value in splitting the difference between two. My clients rarely need a native resolution file from the 1Ds Mark III and the 1D X promises to still hit tabloid size at 300 dpi. Add in the 1D Mark IV better low light performance, its better focus, and better screen, then improve them all (Canon claims) and it should make the 1D X a great tool.

On the video front the changes look encouraging as well. Canon states that moire will be greatly reduced (“virtually gone” in some reports) and rolling shutter will be lessened. The 1D X will offer two compression options for video capture. Both are h.264 but one uses very little compression (e.g. ~6 min. of 1080p on a 16gb card vs. ~48 min as in the past.) There will be the ability to set sound levels before and during recording via a touch screen, two timecode options, and the clip length is expanded to 29 minutes and 59 seconds.

For those who wanted raw format video, xlr or sdi ports, in-camera sound monitoring via headphones, it’s not going to happen. But I wouldn’t have expected it with a body that is a stills camera at heart. There just isn’t the room, the available processing power, or the need. For that you might want to look to Canon’s big announcement on November 3rd in Hollywood…

Canon USA on the 1D X

Planet 5D beyond the press release write up and news on expanded 1D X triggering options.

DSLRnewshooter first look (added 10-27-2011.) In the 14 minute video, the Canon rep states “no line skipping” in video mode on 1D X – that’s huge and will reduce if not eliminate moire and aliasing.  Dan also tests a few accessories on the prototype body.

*In the early 00’s Nikon had the D1x.

Update – 1/29/13:  I have been using the 1D X since early fall 2012. 1D X blog posts.

Update – 12/12/11:  Information on the Canon EOS C300.

Related – 1/26/12:  Change, Flux, Reinvention.