Canon announces EOS C300 Mark II – 4K Cinema Camera

Canon today announced the long-awaited successor to its popular C300 camera, the C300 Mark II.

Canon EOS C300 Mark II

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After a long wait for a successor to the immensely popular C300 – which has been my main cameras for many years – telling from the specs it truly seems like Canon won’t disappoint with the C300 Mark II.

Canon uses a new high-bitrate codec called XF-AVC (which sounds remarkably similar to XAVC, which is what Sony is using in all their new cameras), with up to 410 Mbps (Sony’s XAVC I codec records up to 600Mbps).

They have switched recording from CF cards to CFast 2.0, which is also used by Arri in the new Alexa Mini. While still not exactly cheap, we have seen these cards come in price recently a lot (e.g. this Lexar 128GB CFast 2.0 card), and they compare favorably to Sony’s own XQD standard which is used in the FS7.

High-speed recording, which is something where Canon was clearly lacking behind the competition in the past, has been significantly improved as well: The C300 Mark II records up to 120 fps in 2K / 1080p (and 30p in 4K). That’s not as impressive as Sony FS7’s up to 180 fps, however a huge step up from the C300’s original 60p in 720p only.

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Here is a rundown of the significant tech specs:

  • 10-bit 4:2:2 in 4K recording (UHD 3840 x 2160 & DCI cinematic (4096 x 2160 pixels)
  • up to 410Mbps (in 4K)
  • 10/12-bit 4:4:4 in 2K & Full HD
  • up to 30p in 4K, 120p in 2K/Full HD
  • 4K RAW files to external recorder
  • dual DIGIC DV5 processors
  • dual CFast 2.0 slots
  • 15 stops of dynamic range with new Canon Log2
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF
  • New XF-AVC Intra, Long GOP and Proxy H.265 codecs in 4K, UHD, 2K and 1080p
  • 4-channel audio in 16 or 24 bit and 48 kHz
  • sensor-read out 2x faster than C300, less rolling shutter

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The new C300 Mark II will be priced at $15,999, which is the original price bracket of the C300.

It’s expected to be available in September, but B&H has started to take preorders today.

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Full press release:

The EOS C300 Mark II – Stunning 4K quality, creativity and versatility

City, Country, 8 April 2014 – Canon today unveils the EOS C300 Mark II, a new 4K video camera allowing filmmakers and broadcast producers to realise their creative vision in stunning cinematic detail. Building on the unprecedented success of the acclaimed EOS C300, the more rugged EOS C300 Mark II features an advanced imaging engine with dual DIGIC DV5 processors, new professional codecs and outstanding dynamic range, making it the most capable, flexible and accessible Cinema EOS video camera to date.

Supreme 4K image quality and versatility

With the ability to record 10-bit 4:2:2 files internally at up to 410Mbps in 4K, or 10/12-bit 4:4:4 files in 2K/Full HD, with up to 15 stops of dynamic range, the
EOS C300 Mark II provides footage suitable for extensive post-production work, producing crisper images across the full colour spectrum with reduced “colour bleed”. The camera offers professional filmmakers and broadcasters alike the very best image quality, recording 4K in both broadcast (3840 x 2160) and DCI cinematic (4096 x 2160) resolutions.

The EOS C300 Mark II can record high bitrate 4K files internally to dual CFast 2.0™[i] media, while simultaneously recording 4K RAW files to an external recorder, offering the flexibility and universal appeal for production at the highest quality available today. Additionally, the ability to record 2K/Full HD Proxy files to an internal SD card, at the same time, further streamlines the production workflow process.

The new Canon-designed Super 35mm CMOS sensor and an increased ISO range up to ISO 102,400 deliver exceptional low light performance, allowing operators to capture low-noise footage across a variety of challenging environments without compromising on image quality.

To meet the requirements of a diverse range of shooting applications, the
EOS C300 Mark II offers both full manual control, ideal for cinematic environments, as well as automatic modes. These include, enhanced Dual Pixel CMOS AF (now covering approx. 80% of the frame vertically and 80% horizontally), auto white balance and Face Detection AF, all making it easier for independent news gatherers and documentary filmmakers to shoot on the go.

Instant integration into professional workflows

Canon’s new range of XF-AVC H.264 codecs, designed to be compatible with industry standard Non-Linear Edit systems, makes integrating both 4K and 2K/Full HD footage into workflows effortless, while maintaining the highest image quality. The range features XF-AVC intra for 4K, and XF-AVC Long GOP and Proxy options for 2K/Full HD recording, both of which utilise H.264 codec, offering post production flexibility and ease of use. Filmmakers can select the resolution and codec type that best suits their production, with the EOS C300 Mark II capable of shooting at up to 30P in 4K or up to 120P in 2K/Full HD.

The EOS C300 Mark II offers support for a wide range of colour space options, including BT.2020, the Canon Cinema Gamut and DCI-P3. The camera is also the first Cinema EOS model to feature brand new Canon Log2 technology, which enables the 15-stops of dynamic range, significantly wider than previous Cinema EOS cameras. The camera offers new versatility for sound recording too, supporting 4-channel audio recording in 16 or 24 bit and 48 kHz.

Designed for versatility

The EOS C300 Mark II boasts the iconic Cinema EOS design DNA – a modular body that can be adapted to suit the needs of each shooter and filming situation, through the extensive range of compatible accessories. Internally, the EOS C300 Mark II also includes built-in electronically controlled glass ND (neutral density) filters, which reduces the amount of light reaching the sensor by up to 10 stops in expansion mode. Compatibility with the RC-V100 remote control and optional Wi-Fi control also enables ease of use in a wider range of locations.

The camera’s sensor read-out speed is now twice as fast as the original EOS C300, and further reduces rolling shutter distortion, allowing for crisp image capture in a moving environment, making it perfectly suited for capturing action sequences.

Leveraging Canon’s rich heritage in lens design, the EOS C300 Mark II is compatible with more than 90 current EF and EF Cinema lenses allowing operators to use their existing EF mount lenses. In addition, the EOS C300 Mark II comes equipped with Canon Cine servo zoom lens support, delivering one of the most comprehensive selections of lens possibilities for movie and broadcast production available in the market today. For further flexibility, shooters can opt to change the lens mount from the default EF Mount, to EF Mount with Cinema Lock, or to the industry standard PL mount, as a service option[ii].

EOS C300 Mark II key benefits:

  • High bitrate internal 4K recording with external RAW
  • High dynamic range files, ideal for post production
  • Seamlessly integrate with professional workflows
  • Automatic features make independent shooting easy
  • Shoot with confidence in low light with low noise

[i] Canon is an authorised licensee of the CFast 2.0™ trademark, which may be registered in various jurisdictions

[ii] Available via chargeable service

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Rafael Molina Reply
Rafael Molina April 8, 2015

¡URSA all the way! : P

Sameer Antulay Reply
Sameer Antulay April 8, 2015

Hahahaha

Robert L. Mickles Reply
Robert L. Mickles April 8, 2015

Nice but as with the c500 and Original C300 price, way too high. You can get a Scarlet Dragon for that price. I guess Sony will be selling a lot of FS7s.

Ryan Dean Reply
Ryan Dean April 8, 2015

Meh.

Gregory Dillard Reply
Gregory Dillard April 8, 2015

That original price tag has come back to haunt us!

Fabio H. R. Px Reply
Fabio H. R. Px April 8, 2015

4:2:2!

Fabio H. R. Px Reply
Fabio H. R. Px April 8, 2015

raw to external recorder. nice!!

Wynand van Wyk Reply
Wynand van Wyk April 8, 2015

Ian Badenhorst da het jy dit nou .. Noggal smart ;) .. Even vi cine hey ;)

Ian Badenhorst Reply
Ian Badenhorst April 8, 2015

Ja waar! Maar sal nogsteeds cool wees om so picture uit n DSLR body te kan kry..veral vir travelling.

Bjorn Frins Reply
Bjorn Frins April 8, 2015

Claiming you’ll have 15 stops DR is a little bit exaggerated.

Richie Five-Dee Reply
Richie Five-Dee April 8, 2015

15k they have to be kidding

Reply
Tim Naylor Naylor April 9, 2015

They know exactly what they’re doing. Cheaper than an Alexa or Red and a better reputation for color than Sony.

Reply
Carlos April 8, 2015

Price is too steep. This should be no more than 13/14k

PiDicus Rex Reply
PiDicus Rex April 8, 2015

So, still over priced then ?

Reply
Carlos de Varona April 8, 2015

Show me the footage.

Wally Crow Reply
Wally Crow April 8, 2015

Too much money, but I’ll check it out at NAB next week.

Geoff Bland Reply
Geoff Bland April 8, 2015

Bit steep out of the gate but I’m sure the image is lovely vs the starkness of Sony. What’s really bothering me is; will canon support the thousands of current c300 owners and offer a 4k output to external recorder?

Nino Leitner Reply
Nino Leitner April 8, 2015

Yes they will! There is 4K raw output built into the camera.

Carl William Reply
Carl William April 8, 2015

The C300 isn’t a 4K camera, it just have the right outputs to do it. The outputs are HD, not 3G. That just isn’t enough output. The whole camera would have to be redone… which is why they came out with a C500 and this replacement.

Mark Pommett Reply
Mark Pommett April 8, 2015

15 stops not possible.

Carl William Reply
Carl William April 8, 2015

Why not possible? You don’t think Canon who makes their own sensors could see they were behind in dynamic range and make that a priority?

Caleb Rasak Reply
Caleb Rasak April 8, 2015

Its definitely possible but tough to believe. Just like BMD saying the BMPC 4k has 12 stops of DR it really has around 9 stops. I bet C-Log 2 is possible to deliver 15 stops of DR but finding a scenario where that is possible might not be common.

Carl William Reply
Carl William April 8, 2015

Understood, that is Black Magic… A company that buys their sensors off a shelf. Canon hasn’t over exaggerated a spec, if anything they have low balled some of their own specs.

Caleb Rasak Reply
Caleb Rasak April 8, 2015

Why wouldnt they come in at a more competitive price geared towards the FS7? I mean I know they have C300 owners and users out there now that will directly switch to this but a lot of people will go to FS7 based on price and probably get very similar images. I mean you can almost buy 2 FS7’s for the price of this camera.

 Simpson Sean Reply
Simpson Sean April 8, 2015

City, Country!

Clayton Moore Reply
Clayton Moore April 8, 2015

Like Apple, Canon has no reason to lower prices if they can sell plenty enough at a premium price.

Having said that, even if the C-300 has more to offer then the SONY FS7, will the market think that added value is worth $7,000 more?? Will they think owning ONE C-300 has more value then owning TWO Sony FS7’s ?

Oh one more thing a Panasonic GH4 is not in the same class as a C-300, but if you look at the image alone (cinema 4K) can you say oh yea THAT image easily looks $13,000 “worse” ?

Reply
Silton Buendia April 8, 2015

Um how does the C300 MK2 offer more then the FS7? Almost across the board the FS7 kills the C300. Also the FS7 has a better Codec. A super versatile lens mount system and is truly shoulder mountable with a simple accessory. I could list a dozen other ways how the FS7 is way better.

Reply
James Longmire April 8, 2015

1 very important reason: Color.

Dallas Lee Currie Reply
Dallas Lee Currie April 8, 2015

exactly

Reply
LS April 10, 2015

Maybe NAME and not COLOR is correct, rather? If color really was that important over specs, then the AJA Cion would be far more popular. I’m pretty sure it’s the Canon name, along with the color you are meaning, name being first. Red Scarlet has gorgeous color. Red Dragon even better. And I imagine Weapon will be even better than that. I’m just not sure it’s all about color when people buy Canon. Just really not sure.

Reply
Tim Naylor Naylor April 10, 2015

Color, high ISO low noise, simple workflow, built in ND’s, make it ideal for fast turn around shoots. Simple, easy to use menu compared to Sony. Red doesn’t have the ISO Canon has. Personally I prefer Canon’s colors over Red.

Brett McLemore Reply
Brett McLemore April 8, 2015

Image and color science is regarded as better in the Canon. Workflow is also another selling point. And how is the codec better in the FS7? It’s essentially the same codec but in a different wrapper (which makes workflow a bit easier).

And I wouldn’t say across the board the FS7 kills it. But it does when you factor in value for your money.

Reply
Tim Naylor Naylor April 9, 2015

I just can’t pull the trigger on Sony because of their colors. Even the F55 has janky color. I’ve always loved the Canon colors and in some ways more than Alexa. Just the other specs let me down (8bit, DR, etc). Yeah, I’ll probably buy this camera as I’m sure it’ll be a gravy train. Producers still cream their jeans over C300’s 1. Now they’ll just faint. The only Sony camera that has gotten me excited is the A7s.

Danilo Beghi Reply
Danilo Beghi April 8, 2015

overpriced

Caleb Rasak Reply
Caleb Rasak April 8, 2015

They need to send out a firmware update to the c100 mkii for 4k internal and c-log 2.

Jefe Greenheart Reply
Jefe Greenheart April 9, 2015

No 60p in 4k!? Not winning on that front! Come on Canon, we need 60 at 4k in your new flagship, seriously!

Steve Staffan Reply
Steve Staffan April 9, 2015

Their Flagship would be the C500, not the C300.

Steve Staffan Reply
Steve Staffan April 9, 2015

I will say this. I have a C100 MKI, and to this day the footage surprises me. I absolutely love it. Theres so many people that are so quick to judge a camera before it hits the market just based on specs and crap they read on paper. USE the camera before you judge it!

Reply
ashfaq April 10, 2015

You can get a full specifications of Canon EOS C300 Mark II on the link below

http://dotiny.com/2i5ejx

Reply
Dez April 11, 2015

Over priced, horses for courses people, if you drive a Skoda and Mercedes bring out a car with 4 wheels and steering wheel for three times the price would you consider that to be over priced or justify the fact that its a Mercedes.
If you cant afford it then buy something you can afford. The specs are great for the camera, the image will be rock solid.
Ive used the Sony FS7 and although I could virtually get two for the price of one, ill stick with the one from Canon.
I personally dont like the image from the Sony, although i think its still a great camera.
I have a Canon C300 Mk1 and still love the image, i cant wait to get my hands on the C300 MK2 no matter what URSA, Sony or red are doing the C£00 is my personal choice

Reply
akpe ododoru April 13, 2015

All i can say is thank God for Blackmagic camera, the game is about to change. Am officially divorcing canon :P

Ryan Villanueva Reply
Ryan Villanueva April 14, 2015

I own 2 BM cameras. A pocket and a 4K BMCC and they were..uh.. very quirky cameras. My C300 and C100 may be inferior on paper but provides a more comfortable, consistent, and rock solid shooting experience and workflow. In projects that require super fast turn around, my Canon Cinema cameras can’t be beaten.

Jack Whaley Reply
Jack Whaley April 22, 2015

true 4k @ 60p with Odyssey 7q… nice!