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timeline of Canon EOS camera and lens development



  • EF 135mm f/2.8 soft focus
  • EF 50mm f/1.8
  • EF 50mm f/2.5 compact macro
  • Canon EF 100-300mm f/5.6L AFD
  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L USM.


  • EF 200mm f/1.8L


  • Canon EOS 1 SLR - 1st pro EOS film SLR
  • Canon EOS RT SLR - fixed pellicle mirror
  • EF 50mm f/1.0L USM
  • EF 85mm f/1.2L USM
  • EF 20-35mm f/2.8L


  • EF 35mm f/2.0 AFD
  • EF 50mm f/1.8 II


  • EF 14mm f/2.8L USM
  • TS-E 24mm f/3.5L
  • EF 200mm f/2.8L USM


  • EF 85mm f/1.8 USM
  • Canon EOS 5 / A2e SLR has eye-controlled AF (ECF) allowing user to select one of 5 AF points using their eye, which was later also used in EOS Elan IIE, EOS IXe, EOS-3, EOS Elan 7E, and EOS Elan 7NE models but has not introduced it in any dSLRs.


  • EF 28-70mm f/2.8L USM
  • EF 50mm f/1.4 USM


  • 1N SLR: pro film SLR (A-TTL flash)


  • 1N RS SLR: pro sports film SLR with fixed pellicle mirror
  • DSC3 dSLR - made in conjunction with Kodak
  • DSC1 dSLR - made in conjunction with Kodak


  • EF 135mm f/2L USM
  • EF 200mm f/2.8L USM Mark II
  • 1X SLR


  • EF 24mm f/1.4L USM - the first L lens (whether EF or FD types) to feature both UD and aspherical elements in its constructions.


  • D2000 dSLR - made in conjunction with Kodak
  • D6000 dSLR - made in conjunction with Kodak
  • EF 35mm f/1.4L USM
  • EF 400mm f/2.8L USM
  • Canon EOS 3 film SLR - 45 point AF (also used in later 1V and 1D models)


  • new IS line of Canon EF L series lenses introduced


  • 1V film SLR
    • new E-TTL flash
    • the fastest moving-mirror film camera ever put into production, at 10fps with the PB-E2 power drive booster and the NP-E2 Ni-MH battery pack
  • D30: 3mp 3fps x8jpgs; 1st of the Canon sensor dSLRs.


  • 1D: body based on the 1V film SLR; Panasonic CCD sensor; 4mp cropped 8fps x 21jpgs
  • EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM


  • 1Ds: 11mp full frame 3fps x 10jpg
  • D60: 6mp 3fps x 8jpgs
  • EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM - barrel extends as it zooms toward its shortest focal length


  • 300D / Rebel: 6mp 2.5fps x 4jpgs
  • 10D: 6mp 3fps x 9 jpgs
  • EF 17-40mm f/4L USM


  • EOS 300X film SLR - the last new Canon film SLR
  • Kodak DCS Pro SLR/c - Kodak pro dSLR with Canon EF mount; 13.5mp full frame;
  • E-TTL II flash technology
  • 20D: 8mp 5fps x 23jpgs
  • 1D Mark II: 8mp 8.5fps x 40jpgs
  • 1Ds Mark II: 16.6mp full frame 4fps x 32jpgs


  • 350D or Rebel XT: 8mp 2.8fps x 14jpg
  • 20Da - special astrophotography version of 20D allowing limited live preview and less IR blocking
  • 1D Mark IIN: 8mp 8.5fps x 40jpgs
  • 5D: 12.7mp full frame 3fps x 60jpgs
  • Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM - 3 stop IS
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM - 3 stop IS


  • 30D: 8mp upgrade to the 20D
  • 400D or Rebel XTi: 10mp with dust protection at last
  • Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM - compatible with e-TTL II flash;
    • AF twice as fast as the older Mark I version but not as fast as the f/1.8 version (no longer made)
    • “This lens weighs 2.4 times more, costs 6.2 times more and focuses only about 1/2 as fast as the EF 85mm f/1.8 lens. The greater weight and significantly slower autofocus function than the f/1.8 lens may make it a challenging tool for some action/performance photography applications such as basketball (but may be OK for gymnastics)”
    • a great portrait and wedding lens, not so good for moving toddlers, animals.
    • much better for astrophotography than the 50mm f/1.2 (flatter fields and sharper edge to edge)
  • Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM


  • 1D Mark III:
    • 1.3x crop sensor; 10mp; 10fps x 110frames burst; up to 6400ISO; 19 cross pt AF with 26 assist pts; 14bit; 3“ LCD with live preview; sensor cleaner; 63 zone metering; 300,000 cycle shutter;
  • Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM
  • Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM
  • Canon 1Ds Mark III:
    • 21mp, 5fps, full frame with live preview, 3” LCD, 14bit. $US7999.
    • will be interesting to see how well their current lenses deliver enough resolution to match the sensor, it may be a case of more pixels and megabytes storage but no more detail until they come out with more higher resolution lenses as I suspect they have started with the new 14mm L II lens.
    • strangely, they did not include ISO 6400 as they did with the 1DMIII.
    • pity they didn't have a 1.3x crop 10mp mode at 10fps to give it the versatility of being a 1DMIII as well but I guess a 1.3x crop on this sensor would end up as 16mp and that would be too much data to process at 10fps.
  • Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM
    • 114deg; improved resolution; close focus only 0.20m though, circular aperture. $US2199.
  • Canon 40D:
    • substantial upgrade to the 30D with features derived from the 1D Mark III but I feel it's feature set comes up short when compared with its direct competitors, the Nikon D300 and Olympus E3, although Canon users won't mind.
    • Canon's APS-C range had become quite antiquated and this camera will put it back in the forefront of this range - just a pity the EF-S lenses tend not to be ideal and it's not well suited to the EF or TSE lenses.
    • 10mp, 6.5fps, APS-C with live preview and one touch AF, 9 AF pts, 3“ LCD, 14bit
    • will be available with a new kit 28-135mm f3.5-5.6 IS USM zoom?


  • Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS & Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS kit lenses:
  • Canon EF 200mm f/2L IS USM
    • 2.5kg; close focus 1.9m; circular aperture; $US5999 RRP
  • Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS USM
    • 4.5kg (lighter than the 600mm f/4 which is 5.4kg); $US11,999 RRRP
  • Canon 450D:
    • 12mp, 14bit, 3.5fps, 3” LCD with Live preview with slow contrast-detection AF, sensor cleaning, spot metering at last, 475g w/o batt.
    • SD cards not CF cards & new batteries will effect existing Canon users wanting an upgrade.
    • new kit lens EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 with IS (29-88mm) which at last matches the Olympus kit lens in range, aperture and IS but will it have the build, optical quality and compact size of the Olympus with no rotating front element?
  • Canon 24mm f/1.4L II
    • perhaps this might have the resolution to match the new 21mp full frame sensors.
  • Canon 50D:
    • a 15mp update on the 10mp 40D but same real resolution as the expense of larger files and less dynamic range
    • spatial resolution is similar to 40mp on a full frame - unfortunately Canon don't make lenses of this resolution to match the sensor.
    • apart from this, its a good camera
  • Canon 5D MII:
    • 21mp full frame semi-pro with live preview and sensor dust reduction making it a significant upgrade to the original 5D.
    • you will need the best prime lenses to make use of the 21mp sensor, but otherwise, this is likely to be the way to go if you have the money and don't need the features of the 1DMIII.


  • Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L tilt shift
  • Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5 II L tilt shift
  • Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro hybrid IS L lens
  • Canon 7D:
    • APS-C 18mp 8fps body with movie capability
  • Carl Zeiss 18mm f/3.5 MF lens - see here
  • Canon 1D Mark IV 16mp 1.3x crop 10fps, 920K LCD, 45pt AF (39 X-type), 1080p HD video at 30/25/24 fps; CF UDMA support;


  • Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II:
    • new version adds 1 flourite + a 5th UD lens for less CA, better contrast; closer focus to 1.2m (was 1.4m), “4 stops” IS, bokeh not as nice as previous version.
  • Canon 550D - Rebel version of the 7D; 18mp 3.7fps, HD video
  • Canon 60D - 18mp, 5fps, HD video, articulated screen
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM - an “affordable” L lens
  • version III of 1.4x and 2x teleconverters - better AF accuracy
  • version II of 300mm f/2.8L IS, 400mm f/2.8L IS, 500mm f/4L IS and 600mm f/4L IS lenses
  • Canon EF 8-15mm f/4 L USM - 1st fisheye to give both circular and full frame images, weatherproof


  • Canon 200-400mm f/4 IS L with built-in 1.4x telextender to give switchable 280-560mm f/5.6 lens
  • Canon 600D dSLR
    • 18mp, 3.7fps, 9pt AF, tilt-swivel LCD, built-in wireless TTL flash control, 1080p HD movie at 30, 25 or 24fps with manual control and 3-10x crop zoom function; $US900 with kit lens
    • essentially a 550D with added features and 30% more expensive: flip out swivel LCD screen, Basic+ mode, 60D's Creative Filters, multi-aspect ratio in LiveView mode, wireless TTL built-in, Intelligent Scene mode A+, and auto stitched 2-8sec video snapshots mode.
  • Canon 1100D entry level dSLR
    • 12mp, 3fps, 9pt AF, 720p HD movie at 30fp or 25fps, $US600 with kit lens
    • cheap build quality and ergonomics, fixed 230K LCD, soft jpegs. Not as good as its competitors such as Nikon D3100
    • there is little to recommend with this camera but if you really can't afford a 550D or a mirrorless camera systems then shoot in RAW and add some sharpening.


    • 18mp full frame pro dSLR with 12fps burst, 61pt AF with face detection, 1080HD video with pro controls including manual audio levels - see here
  • Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM - min. focus 0.38m; 10mm shorter than predecessor; zoom lock to prevent damage during transit; weatherproof;
  • Canon EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM
  • Canon EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM
  • Canon 5D Mark III dSLR - substantial update to the Mark II adding weatherproofing, fast AF, 6fps burst rate, HDR, improved sensor and processing whilst maintaining a sensible 22mp sensor resolution.
  • 2.4GHz radio remote TTL flash introduced


  • Canon EOS Cinema lenses: 14mm T3.1 and 135mm T2.2
  • Canon 70D
    • this has a revolutionary dual-pixel phase detect sensor introduced in mid 2013 which should give the best AF in Live View of any current dSLR.
    • However, being a dSLR you have to use the rear screen and not the viewfinder for Live View mode - a bit of a pity really.
    • 20mp, APS-C, 7fps, articulated 3“ touch screen, 1080p30/24 video, 19pt AF in optical mode, 80% of sensor usable for AF in Live View mode, WiFi, built-in flash, AF microadjustment, in-camera HDR, shutter to 1/8000thsec, flash sync 1/250th sec, IR or WiFi remote, weather-sealed, 755g, 139 x 104 x 79mm, $1199 body only
    • optional Battery Grip BG-E14
    • budget full frame with limited AF, burst, flash sync


    • a long time coming!
    • improvements over the ageing Canon7D:
      • 20mp sensor (not 18mp)
      • 200,000 shutter (instead of 150,000)
      • 65 AF points - all cross type, center double-cross, center point is capable of focusing with lenses (or lens/teleconverter combinations) as slow as f/8, as well as down to EV -3 (not just 19 all cross with 7D and it gives a 1 EV advantage in low light compared to the 1D X and 5D Mark III)
      • 1080 60p/25p HD video with All-I, IPB, IPB-Lite and .MOV (not just 60p MP4)
      • metering sensor-assisted AF tracking - the latest version of the 'Intelligent Tracking and Recognition' (iTR) focus system from the EOS-1D X
      • on sensor phase detection Dual Pixel AF for Live View
      • spot-metering linked to AF point
      • 10fps burst to 31 RAW (not just 8fps to 25 RAW)
      • built-in GPS
  • Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM lens
  • Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM
  • Canon EF 24-105mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM


  • Canon 5Ds / 5DSR full frame dSLR - 50mp, 5fps burst, 1.3x and 1.6x crop modes, 64 AF points
  • Canon T6i Rebel - entry level dSLR, 24mp, 19pt all cross AF, 5 AF zones, 7,560 pixel RGB + IR metering sensor with color tone detection but no face detection metering, nor iTR, wide aperture lenses may have inaccurate AF and there is no microadjustment functionality to address this!
  • Canon T6s Rebel - as for T6i but top LCD, rear thumb wheel instead of directional buttons
  • Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM lens - 1st lens with BR optics


  • Canon 80D 24mp, 45 all cross type AF pts, 7fps APS-C with Dual Pixel CMOS AF for Live View
  • Canon 1DX Mark II 20mp, dual-pixel, 4K/60p
  • Canon M5 APS-C mirrorless



photo/canoneoshistory.txt · Last modified: 2020/02/13 19:56 by gary1

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