The long wait is over — Canon unveils 5D Mk III DSLR camera

Canon announced the EOS 5D Mk III DSLR on Friday, a camera which takes its place between the hugely popular EOS 5D Mark II and Canon’s top-of-the-range professional EOS 1D X model.

This solid looking shooter packs a new 22.3-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor (increased from 21.1 on the Mk II), a high-performance DIGIC 5+ imaging processor and a 61-point High Density Reticular Autofocus (AF) system — the last two being lifted from the 1D X.

The 5D Mk III is capable of fast continuous shooting of up to six fps, beating the speed of the EOS 5D Mk II by more than 50 percent. Canon’s new camera, which incidentally has been released on the 25th anniversary of its popular EOS camera system, also comes with improved weather resistance, which is certain to catch the eye of serious sports and wildlife photographers.

Its ISO capability stretches from 100 to 25,600 in the standard range; it can also be pulled down to 50 at the lower end and whacked up to two you’ll-probably-never-need settings of 51,200 and 102,400, unless, as Canon says in its press release, you work in the area of law enforcement, government or forensics.

The Mk III also features a 1,040,000-dot 3.2-inch rear LCD screen — again pulled from the top-of-the-range 1D X camera — and allows photographers to display two images side by side, which is a first for an EOS camera.

Dual memory card slots on Canon’s new offering accept CF and SD/SDHC/SDXC cards with various options available as to how they’re used, and 100 percent viewfinder coverage ensures shooters will be seeing the whole picture when they hit the shutter button.

 The 5D Mk II model has been a hit with video makers the world over and so Canon is hoping the extra features on the Mk III will help cement its reputation among the film-making community. Improvements include better noise reduction, longer recording times (up to 30 minutes) and a built-in headphone jack for audio monitoring. The new camera can capture 1080p HD video at 24, 25 or 30 fps.

The 5D Mk III should be available at the end of this month with a body-only price tag of $3,499. A kit that includes the EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM zoom lens will also be available for $4,299.

Missed anything? Canon’s press release about the new camera can be found here.

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