Canon has recently patented new technology that lets you zoom the camera’s lens automatically. It’s made to be AI-operated, and it zooms the lens on your behalf to help you reframe the shot.
Canon isn’t a name we normally associate with drones, but a new drone gimbal camera patent suggests they might be starting to try to take on the consumer drone market. If they are planning to tackle the likes of DJI and Autel, Canon does have some experience with drones. This isn’t their first one, having released the PD6E2000-AW-CJ1 drone (doesn’t that name just roll right off the tongue?) back in 2017.
But that 2017 drone wasn’t focused towards general consumers or even higher-end working photographers and filmmakers at all. That $20,000 drone (along with the $20,000 camera you need to bolt onto it) was designed specifically for activities like search and rescue. This new patent, though, looks like they might be targeting the consumer market.
In the days of DSLRs, even when your camera was on a tripod, it was possible to get a little motion blur in your shots due to what we called “mirror slap”. In these mirrorless days, mirror slap isn’t really a thing anymore, but there is a chance that the vibrations from the shutter can cause the tiniest of motion blur. With lower resolution cameras, it’s not much of an issue, but with cameras getting higher and higher resolution with each new generation, it may become one.
There’s also the hope that Canon expected to announce a high-resolution monster soon, which would make any potential blur from the shutter moving quickly more noticeable. So, Canon has patented a new mechanical shutter design to help minimise the “shutter shock” vibrations caused by fast-moving shutters suddenly reaching their end limits.
Canon has filed a new patent in Japan that shows a pretty unusual mirrorless camera body. It comes with an integrated grip with a pass-through, and it’s designed so that you can shoot both horizontally and vertically.
One of the great things about DSLRs was that the shutter was closed and the mirror was down when you weren’t actively shooting a photo. This meant that when swapping out lenses, your sensor was largely protected from the elements. With mirrorless cameras, though, not so much.
A new Canon patent shows an in-camera mechanism that looks similar to a shutter (but isn’t), that keeps your sensor protected when no lens is attached. What makes it different from closing the actual shutter is that there are no electronics involved in this one. It’s all mechanical and happens automatically as you twist the lens off the camera.
Made famous with 35mm SLR cameras like the EOS 3 and EOS 5 (A2/A2e in the USA), Canon’s eye-controlled autofocus system has been sorely missed by some over the last couple of decades. It never made it into any of their DSLRs, but it seems it will be making a comeback in the recently announced Canon EOS R3 mirrorless camera.
New patents filed by Canon (US 2021/0124239 and US 2021/0125375) have now revealed a little information about how the user will be able to interact with it through the menu system and how you’ll be able to calibrate it. Eye-controlled autofocus wasn’t perfect back in the film days, let’s hope Canon has got it figured out now.
Canon has filed a pretty interesting looking patent at the Japan Patent Office. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about it yet, but it replaces the focus ring on the lens with a touch panel which would let you control the lens with your thumb as you handhold it.
On the plus side, it’d make people start to hold their cameras properly, but it does seem like it’d be a bit of a pain for a lot of photographers, particularly those shooting on tripods – like landscape or product photographers. It does offer a lot of potential for cool features, though.
A new Canon patent application has popped up on the Japan Patent Office website detailing six new RF mount prime lenses ranging in focal length from 70mm up to 100mm. With the exception of an 85mm f/1.8, all of the lenses sport an f/2 aperture. So, they’re not super fast (with perhaps the exception of one), but they’re faster than zooms, yet slow enough to potentially be relatively low budget lenses.
For those who hear about the fact that Canon used to have 35mm SLRs with eye-controlled AF, but have never had the opportunity to try it themselves, it’s an intriguing proposition. Look at something, and the camera just focuses on it. Sounds great, right? Well, for those that have actually used it, the response is very mixed. My dad had it on his EOS 5. He loved it. I tried it and I hated it.
The theory’s great, but the implementation wasn’t. Canon seemed to abandon the idea, but now a new patent suggests that they might be looking to reintroduce the concept into future EOS R mirrorless cameras at some point.
This is pretty odd, but also kind of cool. Canon has patented (through no fewer than five separate patents) a strange DJI Osmo-like gimbal with a built-in camera that actually has interchangeable lenses and a hotshoe on top. What makes it odd, though, is that it doesn’t really seem to be quite like any gimbals we’ve seen before.
For a start, there doesn’t appear to be a way to actually balance the lens horizontally for tilting. It doesn’t slide backwards and forwards, it just tilts. And it doesn’t look large enough to actually contain any kind of motor in there. It does pans from side to side, though. It looks like Canon is possibly going to be relying on IBIS for this one.