Small and affordable, new Canon mirrorless also has robust 24.2-megapixel sensor

Canon is offering a new option for budding photo enthusiasts that want to step off the smartphone sand and dip their toes into the water of interchangeable cameras. Announced on August 29, the Canon EOS M100 is an entry-level mirrorless camera packaged inside the smallest M-series body yet.

The 24.2-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor inside the M100 is designed to offer a step-up from smartphone photography, while the re-designed touch interface makes the transition easy for smartphone fans, which Canon says makes it even simpler to switch modes, alter settings, or adjust the focus, Canon says. A tilting screen rotates 180 degrees, offering the ability to shoot at awkward angles or snap a selfie.

The APS-C sensor is paired with Canon’s Digic 7 processor offering a 4-frames-per-second (fps) burst rate or 6.1 fps with the focus fixed on the first frame. The M100 brings Canon’s Dual-Pixel autofocus to the entry-level mirrorless for smoother, faster autofocus — bringing it on par, in some ways, with Canon’s newest DSLR and mirrorless models. The camera doesn’t offer 4K — not surprising for a budget model — but the 1080p video can still achieve a 60-fps frame rate.

True to Canon’s statement about targeting step-up photographers, the camera includes a number of shooting options for beginners. The Creative Assist menu allows users to accomplish tasks like blurring the background or brightening the image, without them knowing the technical terms for aperture and exposure. Canon says the feature is designed to help newbies learn how to further enhance their photography skills. The camera also includes a HDR Backlight Control mode, creative filters, self-portrait mode, and bulb exposure.

For connectivity — and new for a Canon camera — the M100 offers Bluetooth, which maintains an always-paired connection between camera and phone for geotagging and wireless transfers. Remote operation, RAW photos, and videos will still require the stronger Wi-Fi connection.

The M100 replaces Canon’s EOS M10 from 2015, sporting a similar design and price point. Unlike the pricier M5, the M100 doesn’t have the electronic viewfinder (EVF) and only offers about half the burst speed. The M100 is the smallest camera in the M-line yet, however, and sports the same sensor as the M5. (The Canon EOS M6 is similar to the M5, but lacks the EVF.)

The Canon EOS M100 will be available beginning in October for $600 with the EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM kit lens, or $950 for a two-lens kit that also includes the EF-M 55-200mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM lens. There is no body-only option, since it’s designed for first-time mirrorless buyers who most likely do not own any lenses. The camera body comes in two color options, black and white.

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