I am not the first to cover the news so lets go straight to the interesting parts. Forget the T3, it only record in 720p, lets look at the Canon T3i which is the only real option for HDSLR shooters.
The spec sheet is looks pretty standard/expected until we hit these two points:
- Improved EOS Full HD Movie mode with manual exposure control, expanded recording with new Movie Digital zoom and Video Snapshot features for enhanced video shooting options.
- Vari-angle 3.0-inch Clear View LCD monitor (3:2) for shooting at high or low angles and 1,040,000-dot VGA with reflection reduction
Improved movie mode
The big word here is not the manual exposure control (and the 720p60!) but the new movie digital zoom. In the description it says:
magnify the center of the image by 3–10x while at the same time maintaining gorgeous Canon Full HD image quality
I just dont understand how they can do it! To zoom 10x while still reading 1080 pixel high means the sensor would have to have at least 10,800 pixels! I think this is a typo and the 10x zoom is only available when shooting in 640×480 mode. Anyone can confirm this?
Clearly Canon realized the demand for vari-angle LCD and is acting on it. If you think it is useless, it is simply because you have never tried it! The question is: are they going to add this feature to the other, more advanced, camera models? I hope they do (at least up to the next 5DMrkIII or 7DMrkII) but I doubt it.
What about the stills?
For those who still enjoy taking pictures, Canon improved the automatic mode (they now call it A+) and the metering/autofocus. I have no idea how much of an improvement this A+ mode is since I have not used the Auto mode in the last 8 years… I am not a big fan of camera deciding how to exposure my shots but I am sure this camera will be very popular among soccer moms and amateurs.
Priced at about 800$, the Canon T3i is an incredible deal for someone getting into HDSLR video. At least on paper! Lets all hope Canon keeps the ball rolling and gives the same level of improvements to the next 5D!