Canon EOS 5D Mark II firmware in April and missing 720p?

by planetmitch9 Comments

I've seen two posts in the last couple of days warning the Canon EOS 5D Mark II firmware update in the works will be missing 720p and won't be out until April.

Redrock Micro

First up was from
“This info apparently comes from the Super Meet event in San Francisco. Canon is a sponsor of the event.
This information isn’t official from Canon that I can find.
Not in February…
We’re told the 5D Mark II feature firmware update will not be available in February. Another thing not in line for the firmware is 720p mode.”

planet5D Cinema

Then today, this post on

“They (Canon) couldn’t make 720p they tested and found that is not good and decided to add this option to the next full frame camera that they will make. 24p will be available, but that’s it.”

So, according to this source. There will not be a 50/60fps, 720 X 1280 option for the 5D mark II. It will only be able to shoot 30p and 24p/25p @ 1080 X 1920. This is a blow to “Full-Framers”, but should not come as a big surprise.”

So, what do we believe? The PR they issued back in October stating simply we'd get 24 and 25p…

“London, 20 October 2009 – Canon today announces that it is currently developing a firmware update to the EOS 5D Mark II to enable the recording of high definition 1080p video at 24 and 25fps. The decision to develop new firmware to support these features has been taken following feedback received from cinematographers and photographers.

Introduced in September 2008, the multi award-winning EOS 5D Mark II was the first DSLR product to offer full frame 1080p HD video recording, opening up a multitude of new creative possibilities for photo journalists, news photographers and amateur filmmakers. Since then, Canon has continued to develop its groundbreaking EOS Movie functionality, firstly with the firmware update to the EOS 5D Mark II that enabled manual exposure control, and more recently by introducing a choice of video recording frame rates with the EOS 7D and EOS-1D Mark IV.

Canon currently expects the firmware update to be made available during the first half of 2010. An announcement regarding details of the update and its availability will be made closer to the release date.”

So, where did the idea we were getting 720 come from? I can't find any official release. Going back into the archives, we saw a Tim Smith (a Canon rep) say in a presentation that 720 was coming “you'll get a lot of choices in terms of frame rates”, but that wasn't an official press release and maybe Canon have changed their mind? Or maybe they thought they could do 720, but then have backed off? The initial PR sure didn't say anything about 720 updates so maybe we all jumped the gun? I guess we'll have to wait to see for sure.

UPDATE: 2/1/2010 – 7:30 CST
I just found this article which may be the source

“First – the release date. Today I had clarification from the event organisers that the firmware update will not feature on the camera itself by the time the competition gets under way on February 5th, and instead will be released at a later date.

We will have to wait a little longer – My sources say this is to give the 7D and Mark IV yet more time to garner sales and we can expect the firmware update to be April at the earliest unless Canon Japan has a change of heart”

So, would Canon really delay the firmware just to get more sales of the 7D? I would hope not.

(Photo credit: snap from the canonrumors site)



  1. The upcoming firmware has 720p60 mode.

    *IF* Canon releases a firmware that does NOT have it, then it means they lately changed their mind and decided not to release it.



    BE AWARE of how so many customers are reacting and showing their discontent to the “rumor” that 720p mode will not be included…

    Because it would mean you (Canon) decided to get that function/mode out of the firmware, and that can result in VERY BAD move…

    You (Canon) DO know the firmware does have 720p mode.

    Customers who use 5D Mark II are not “just consumers”, but most of them Professionals instead, who invested in the camera (or more than one) that costs $2,700 (body-only; $2,500 now) and many Full Frame lenses and other accessories, which in total might exceeds several thousands dollars in Canon equipment.

    So they deserve to be treated “Professionally”, and they indeed don’t feel they are being treated that way at all…

    You should take lot of care of their LOYALTY, giving what CAN be given via firmware updates (that is MUCH more than is usually included), and a better, more professional customer service. The showing that you ARE really “listening to customers” and not “playing” with them…

    Take a look at the List of Features we collected from the feedbacks of LOT of Professionals:

  2. Pingback: » Canon EOS 5D Mark II firmware in April and missing 720p? – planetMitch (planet5d) Photo News Today: News and Pixelosophy – more than 34,000 posts

  3. Like many others have expressed on Twitter, I REALLY hope that this is not true. If Canon want to stay competitive, they need to have as much consistency as possible with their other models. We know that the data rate of 60p (at 720p) is entirely achievable on the 5D, as we have learnt from sources and white-papers from Canon. If Canon wants to take the competition seriously, they MUST provide consistent frame rates across the board. If not, their line up will just look ridiculously segmented, and another wave of unhappy customers and bad publicity will follow.

    If they release the firmware on time, including 60p, it can only have a POSITIVE effect on their sales – some film makers might even upgrade and spend more money on a full frame camera which is competitive with the other models on offer. A half baked firmware won’t do Canon, we need 60p!

  4. 1Dmark4, its 24, 25, 30, 720 50/60p, and 5000 body only….
    and there is a lot of people that dont need the amazing low light response…no way they are giving us 720p-50/60p for the 5dm2..

    1. That’s not a logical thinking because the 7D which is $1,700 has all those features, but the more expensive (and full frame=more expensive lenses too) 5D Mark II still doesn’t.

  5. I don’t get it, we all saw the video demo from the two guys from Canon showing the menu on the 5D2 that had 720p and 1080p in 24 and 30… why would there all of a sudden be these rumours that 720p isn’t going to happen?

    Also, help me out here… why do we need 720p anyway? Please don’t laugh, I guess I’m just still a newbie. I shoot mine at 1080p and edit it all in Premiere CS4. Then if I need to spit out a DVD I just choose a 720p output preset and let ‘er rip. But I prefer the footage in full 1080p so I can reduce later if needed. Why would I want to shoot in 720p?

  6. Ah, slo-mo… OK, gotcha. I presume 60fps looks better when doing slo-mo? Wow, there’s so much I have to learn… but it’s fun though!

    1. The 60fps is better for slo-mo because simply slowing down footage shot at 30fps will look choppy. This is because you need to think about the process physically. Imagine 30 frames being stretched out. When you play it back, there is information missing in the gaps created by stretching out that footage. BUT if you had 60fps, when you stretched it out to play back at a 30fps rate (this process if called overcranking), it would be in slo-mo but have no gaps in information. Resulting in smooth beautiful slo-mo. Get it?

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