A Call to Action – tell Canon what you want in your next HDSLRs

by planetmitch12 Comments

Have you ever told Canon what you want in your next HDSLR? Well, now is a good time to take that action and to let them know what you need! Friend of planet5D James Drake watched an interview with Chuck Westfall at NAB (by Clint Milby) and decided to ask everyone to take the time to let Canon know exactly what is needed in the next Canon EOS 5D Mark III (and other HDSLRs). Tho based on the amount of lead time needed to develop and test new features for a camera it may be a bit late for the next camera, but it sure doesn't hurt to take a few minutes to let your voice be heard.

Redrock Micro

This is a guest post by James Drake from his post.

Have you ever found yourself wishing your Canon DSLR had a few extra features on the video setting? Probably, video on DSLR is far from perfect. Now is your chance to voice your opinion and change the future of filmmaking with DSLRs as we know it, again.

I was inspired by an interview on Vimeo with Chuck Westfall (Canon's media spokesperson). Props to Clint Milby from the PVC for getting this.

Pay attention at 4:18 and then come back to read the rest of the post below

NAB 2011: Chuck Westfall – Canon USA from Clint Milby on Vimeo.

James continues

There's a quote in here that should put every single cinematographer that's ever used a Canon HDSLR into immediate action:

“Customers who are interested in [digital cinematography] should be thinking about two things, 1) if they haven't told [Canon] what they're looking for, by all means let us know and 2) they should be aware that we are very responsive and we're going to do our best to make sure they're happy.”
-Chuck Westfall, at 4:18

Holy. Cow. Canon wants to make us cinematographers happy. Doesn't your heart beat a little faster?

Visit Canon's 5D support page to send an email with your feature requests. They will automatically route your email to the “appropriate party” from there. Email them, they're listening.

This isn't the first call to action! In fact, remember back about a year ago when the Canon 5D DIDN'T have 24p? People had to use the Magic Lantern firmware to get 24. The online community spoke up. Names like Vincent Laforet posted blogs with droves of people requesting 24p. Sure enough, Canon listened and 24p arrived. Not only on the 5Dmk2, but the 7D, 1Dsmk4, T2i, 60D, and now the T3i.

The downside is that we may not hear anything on the 5D mk3 until Q4 2011 or LATER. However, this is our opportunity, the online filmmaking community, to send our requests in to Canon by the thousands.

No doubt they've received many emails already. We finally arrive at the title of this post: why the 5D Mark III could revolutionize everything again. This is my biggest feature request:

Clean Video Out, 10 bit 4:2:2 or better.

Add a $2000 AJA KiPro Mini to a 5D Mark III with clean video out and you've got an unbelievable setup. Especially if you combine the new technicolor preset into the equation. The KiPro is broadcast quality. It records readily-editable prores AND has XLR in with great preamps. Your audio is synced and you're instantly ready to edit (on the incredibly new fast FCP X). For me, that makes the whole system: 1080p log 10 bit 4:2:2 Prores WITH great audio with a full frame sensor. SAY WHAT??!!! That easily encroaches on the F3 which costs north of $20k (no glass).

The revolution is self-explanatory. The DSLR video market already exists, so those of us with working setups would only have a small transition. PLUS, the 5D mark ii (or other) still makes a great B cam with perfectly matching picture profiles. How's that for a win-win?

Send your emails now!

Please Canon…. clean video out……

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)

Zeiss Cinema Lenses


  1. Being not american I cannot send my suggestions to Canon.
    What I would love to see in the future, is the possibility to buy a rugged camera frame but with upgradeable electronics and sensors. I am tired to buy expensive well built cameras with obsolete electronic three years later.
    Once we would have such cameras, everything else is possible.
    If the MK3 will be just a better MK2, then I will wait until the industry becomes smart and fair.

  2. Canon don’t take to long.
    Look what happened with you long delay with tape less
    formal video cameras, Panasonic got your clients.
    EOS need clean image not only out but in camera

  3. Non line skipping (like Panasonic GH2) and higher bitrates, even different codecs like Prores 422 IN camera. A cooler CMOS. It is not good to stop an interview because the camera is hot. (Has it vaccuum tubes?, could think the interviewee).

  4. Better – Codec. 422. Dynamic range. HDMI out. No line skipping. 1080p 24,25,30 & 60p. Slow motion 4 second burst 400p.

  5. No line skipping. Need to resize the whole image sensor data to avoid the moire effects of line/pixel skipping.

    HDMI output of the 16×9 shot area.

    Better dynamic range. Need to catch up with the ARRI Alexa, RED’s, new Sony’s, etc 😉

    A 422 codec would be nice. ProRes is probably too high of a data rate for CF cards (even if it can sustain the rate, they’d fill up quickly…), but a compressed 422 (such as an h264 or m2v) would work.
    If the camera had a FireWire 800 or Thunderbolt connection for an external hard drive, then a ProRes 422 HQ codec would be awesome.

    A way to connect XLR’s for audio input. Probably too big to have the inputs on the camera itself, but maybe a connector for a breakout cable?

  6. Strange. all professionals told Canon what they needed to improved on the 5Dii and 7D etc and they take 2 years to make minor adjustments. So just leave it Open Firmware and let Vitaly Kiselev hack it for us.

  7. I’d love to see the codec Canon is using in their XF300 line. 50mbit 4:2:2 seems reasonable.

    Clean HDMI out would certainly be wonderful.

    As for the whole line skipping thing, if they start pixel binning instead, it’d do a lot of good.

    Oh, and some custom bodies. I’d love to run and gun with a lime green 5D Mark 3.

  8. Hi,

    This is a VERY important topic indeed. Thanks Planet5D for posting about it!

    We would like to share a List of Fixes & Improvements that we collected across 2009 and posted long ago.

    Very few of those improvements were implemented, even when the built-in hardware allow to enhance and add more features on current Canon cameras.

    Maybe Canon should take requests more seriously.

    Since they are asking for features request, then we would like to mention the list again:


    We sincerely hope Canon take into account these and many more features, that will be possible to implement in future cameras thanks to the new hardware.

    And of course, we all would like to see Firmware Updates that add some of those features on already existing and capable cameras as well. They have a huge potential, not fully exploited yet.


  9. Pingback: How YOU can tell Canon what you need! « HD Cam Team

Leave a Comment