The news is out and I wont bother retyping all the specs as I am sure you read them already. Instead, I would like to go over some of the points to see what this announcement really means for both photographer and videographers.
As a photographer
Nothing surprising here: improved ISO, shutter speed, less noise, more and faster focus points Spock would not be impressed. They call it the best camera Canon ever made, of course! It is their latest flagship product! Did you really expect them to step backward?
Actually, they did in some regard: the pixel count is going down in the name of bigger pixels. It is interesting to see Canon following the approach Nikon did with the D3. Problem is: Nikon came out later with a 24mp sensor which offered an even better sensor. So it is possible to get high ISO, low noise, high dynamic range while keeping a high pixel count.
Now the stupid feature: in camera HDR! The guy who had the idea to put this in the camera should be fired! I don’t know a single person who shoots HDR who would accept that a computer does all the composition automatically. There is one exception to this: if the end product is a RAW image, but from what I understand it is going to be a compressed JPEG.
As a videographer
Instead of taking another leap forward, the 1Dx is more of a refinement. While a lot of wedding and sport videographers will complain about the lack of 60fps@1080, anyone who really cares about image quality will be happy about the moire and jello effect improvements.
The addition of time code and edit friendly compression formats are nice but not quite what people would have expected. Especially since the newest version of Premiere and FCPX can edit native H.264 now. Why didn’t they get their inspiration from what is done with Magic Lantern? There is a reason why most non Canon sponsored filmmakers use it!
I have not been able to find anything about the video out capabilities but I would be highly surprised if it was a clean HD feed while recording. But hey, we can always hope!
Will history repeat itself?
The 1Ds MrkIII will be remembered as the camera which, while providing some decent incremental gain, did not gain a lot of traction because it was quickly made obsolete by its (cheaper) alternative: the 5DMrkII.
Will it be the case with the ESO 1D X vs the 5DMrkIII? A lot of people were expecting more significant improvements in the video department from a pro level camera, especially since the 5DMrkIII is expected any time soon.
This put us in an interesting situation: Canon has to make the 5DMrkIII significantly better than the MrkII version while keeping it under the ESO 1D-X. I have a few theories about this but I will leave them for an upcoming post.