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Hands on preview via The Verge
[pull_quote_right] Like Sony’s NEX offerings, the EOS M has a large, APS-C-sized sensor, and is fully compatible with its manufacturer’s back catalog of lenses via an add-on adapter.[/pull_quote_right]For a few weeks, even months now, we have all been hearing rumors about Canon’s first entry into the mirrorless market. Well, this week Canon has confirmed those rumors and present us with the Canon EOS M. The M presumably stands for mirrorless.
At first glance, the EOS M appears to be beautifully crafted which should be expected from a company that provides the industry with some of the most well crafted point and shoot cameras on the market. It also seems to be aimed at the consumer market as it capitalizes on the increasing demand for touch screen technology.
Speaking to TechRadar, David Parry from Canon UK said, “Although there’s no question that this is an EOS camera, it’s targeted at people who are not traditionally an EOS camera customer.
It’s for people who are interested in photography and want to take better images, but don’t know, or don’t want to know about shutter speeds, aperture and so on.”
All settings that are pertinent to any, even semi-serious, photographer are controlled on-screen. That means controlling ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed and shooting modes are all done via touch screen. I’m not certain how I will feel about that a few months in, but right now I feel like i need to physically control those settings with buttons or jog dials to be effective. Only time will tell. As with everything on the market, demand is the greatest factor in the natural selection of feature sets. [To be clear, the settings are also accessible via jog-wheel but it is evident that the intended method of controlling these settings is the touch UI.]
Compared to the Sony NEX system, the EOS M looks to be comparable in size and sports the same sized APS-C sensor. However, the Canon lacks a tilt screen and option for an EVF, both features the NEX line has integrated over time. That said, the EOS M offers a speedlite for the system that mounts via hotshoe and seems a bit more useful for the enthusiast than the flash unit typically bundled with the NEX system. With regards to autofocus, The Verge reports:
In terms of autofocus performance, the EOS M was noticeably laggier than the NEX–5N, but offered results comparable to a good point-and-shoot.
This is disappointing as I honestly expected, given the amount of time it took for Canon to craft and release, the EOS M to be a bit snappier with regards to auto focus than other mirrorless options on the market.
My experience with the EOS M is limited to the articles I have read and features I have stalked so I am unable to write an in depth editorial on the pros and cons of the system. However, the results seem to be consistent across the board with those who have had an opportunity to get close to the unit; slightly underwhelming. Engadget writes
The EOS M’s control layout should be more familiar to Canon point-and-shoot owners than DSLR users -
which may be a good thing for some, but reiterates the demographic this camera is aimed at. In all fairness, they [Engadget] also note that the EOS M is not a drastic departure from their DSLR lineup, meaning that some of the rich features in the t4i are present within the EOS M as well.
The jury is still out on this one. It’s performance and Canon’s ability to build out the lens lineup quickly will determine whether or not I will jump ship from the NEX line to the Canon EOS M. Until then, read some of the reviews and hands on items I’ve dug up for you from around the web.