As well as the firmware update for the EOS R5, Canon has also announced v1.4.0 firmware for the Canon EOS R3 (buy here). Unfortunately, the new pixel shift feature of the EOS R5 doesn’t appear to have translated over. What it does have, however, is improved facial recognition. You’re now able to have it remember specific people in an attempt to focus on them.
This newfound ability will be very handy for several photographers, including wedding and sports shooters. Being able to focus on specific people throughout the course of events such as these can prove to be extremely useful and ensure more keepers. After all, you don’t want to be shooting a wedding party and have it randomly focus on drunk aunts and uncles behind the wedding couple all the time.
There are some caveats with the new facial recognition and identification feature in the EOS R3. If the face gets too small, is at an angle, or is partially obscured, it may fail. Moving subjects may also cause it to fail, possibly due to motion blur. Certain shooting environments can also cause it to fail. This is a guess, but it’s probably the same sorts of environmental situations that have caused autofocus to fail for years. Too dark, too low contrast, dappled light, etc.
This isn’t the only new feature being added to the Canon EOS R3, so here’s the full list from Canon:
Firmware Version 1.4.0 incorporates the following enhancements and fixes:
1. Adds support for Speedlite EL-5.*
*The automatic light intensity adjustment of the AF-assist beam is not supported.
2. Adds [Register people priority] to the camera menu.
Pre-registered people can now be detected and tracked with priority.**
** This feature may not operate if faces are too small to detect, in profile or turned at an angle or partially hidden; for scenes where the subject is moving; or due to certain shooting environments.
3. Adds [Save/load comm. settings on card] to the camera menu.
Network settings can now be transferred between cameras of the same model.
4. Adds [Panning Assist] to the camera menu. When a compatible lens is used for panning shots, image stabilization and subject blur correction are applied during the exposure.
5. Improves the Auto White Balance (AWB) setting to reduce the time it takes for the AWB result to be reflected in the camera’s viewfinder’s display when looking through the viewfinder.
6. Adds Protect Images During [FTP Transfer] to the camera menu. Images transferred via FTP can now be automatically protected. The user can determine if images have already been transferred via FTP.
7. Fixes minor issues.
The new v1.4.0 firmware for the Canon EOS R3 is available to download from the Canon website.