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3 Features on the EOS R That Will Change the Way You Shoot

Why does the EOS R have a multi-function bar? What can you do with the control ring on the RF lenses? And what makes the new RF mount so special? We take a close look at three new operating features on the EOS R that promise to revolutionise your shooting style.

EOS R showing RF mount

 

1. The multi-function touch bar—Because swiping and tapping is the new way to go

While dials and buttons have always been essential to how we operate cameras, with the rise of the smartphone, touchscreen gestures such as swiping and tapping have become very much a part of our everyday lives. You probably perform them a few hundred times each day! The camera of the future will inevitably have to evolve to cater to such new norms.

On the EOS R, this is reflected in the form of the innovative new multi-function bar. The bar allows you to assign various functions to be performed when you tap left, tap right, or swipe it. It’s a feature that has never before been seen on any other camera, and anticipates the way we will control our cameras in the future.

 

It’s also ergonomic

This innovative control is not only up-to-date with our new smartphone habits, it has also been designed for ease of use. Canon has been researching human ergonomics for a long time, and it has always sought to make its cameras fit comfortably into users’ hands. The multi-function bar has not been excluded: It is placed to the right of the viewfinder, where you can easily operate it with your thumb even when you are holding the camera.

Location of multi-function bar

Operating the multi-function bar is easy. All you need to do is to swipe the bar, tap left or tap right.

 

Tip: Use it to avoid operational noise during video recording

You might love the sound that a dial makes when you turn it, but noises like that will get picked up when you are recording video. Use the multi-function bar to change your settings instead. A light touch is all it takes—perfect for recording that important scene with no distracting operational noises.

multi-function bar in action

The multi-function bar lets you adjust settings without making operational noises—a great help especially for video shooting.

 

2. The control ring—Fast, hands-on control

The EOS R’s native RF lenses come with a control ring at the front of the lens barrel. Here are two reasons why you will love it:

 

i) It helps you change exposure settings even faster

You can use this control ring to change the f-number, shutter speed, ISO speed and exposure compensation.

Location of control ring

RF lenses come with a control ring located at the front part of the lens barrel.

 

You have probably experienced this: You spot the perfect subject—perhaps, a wild bird roosting in the trees. But before you can finish adjusting your exposure settings to capture the perfect picture, the bird flies away.

The control ring helps to prevent such lost photo opportunities. Just assign control of one of the exposure settings to the control ring, and you will be able to release the shutter even while adjusting your settings. You can now get the shot that you want, with your ideal exposure.

Using an EF lens with the EOS R? No problem. The Control Ring Mount Adapter EF-EOS R adds the same control ring functionality.

Find out how the control ring and multi-function bar helped figure skating photographer Annice Lyn in:
EOS R: Gliding Through Fog, Sweat, Smiles and Tears

 

ii) That tactile feel of direct control over your settings

This will probably be a major plus point, especially if you like the feel of operating old cameras with their analogue controls. You can assign aperture control to the control ring, and it will work just like the aperture ring on old manual focus lenses: Simply turn to adjust.

Using control ring

You can assign the control ring to adjust aperture, shutter speed, ISO speed or exposure compensation.

 

Did you know: You can’t help but hold your camera better when you use the focus ring

When you use the focus ring, you have to hold the front of the lens with your left hand. This actually results in a steadier shooting position as it gives the lens better support. In other words, using the focus ring makes you hold the camera better. Canon’s developers have indeed put much effort into the EOS R design, going as far as to consider how users would hold the camera.

Control Ring Mount Adapter EF-EOS R

The Control Ring Mount Adapter EF-EOS R allows you to use EF lens with the EOS R, and also adds the control ring functionality.

 

EOS R portrait

EOS R/ RF 50mm f/1.2L USM/ FL: 50mm/ Manual exposure (f/1.2, 1/125 sec)/ ISO 100/ WB: 5200K

 

3. The new mount system—Ushering in a new era for lenses

Digital cameras come with increasingly higher pixel counts, and that trend will most likely continue in the years to come. This means that lenses also have to evolve to handle higher and higher image resolutions.

With its EF lens lineup, Canon has constantly aimed to produce lenses with the best image quality. To ensure that this would continue even with the intensifying “pixel count race”, it decided to design a completely new lens system. The result: The new RF mount.

 

The two goals of the RF lens designers

In an interview, Canon’s lens developers shared that they had two goals when designing the new lenses:

1. To ensure that light entering the lens could travel in a straight line before reaching the sensor. This would help to prevent the image that formed on the sensor from being distorted.

2. To ensure that this light would reach all parts of the sensor, so that the edges of the image would also have good image quality.

To achieve the first goal, the key was to shorten the distance from the back of the lens to the image sensor (i.e., the flange focal distance) to the minimum possible.The designers therefore decided to remove the space that would usually be taken up by the mirror. Hence, the EOS R takes the form of a mirrorless camera.

To achieve the second goal, the lens designers came up with the idea of increasing the size of the rear lens element, which would guide more light onto the sensor. The inner mount diameter also had to be enlarged accordingly. Eventually, the designers arrived at the large 54mm inner mount diameter, which happens to be the same as that on the EF mount.

Together, these efforts resulted in the design of a new lens system equipped to meet the demands of the new ultra-high-resolution era.

Short flangeback distance

To achieve better image quality, the lens designers designed the RF mount to ensure the shortest possible distance between the back of the lens and the sensor (flange focal distance).

 

Improved lens-camera communication

The optics are not the only innovation on the RF lenses. Each RF lens stores lens aberration correction data in the lens mount, which is then transmitted to the camera when the lens is attached. Users no longer need to update the lens profiles in their camera to enjoy the optimum lens aberration correction for each new lens.

With this feature, as well as with the other enhancements and features on the EOS R, communication between the lens and the camera has become more important than before. The RF mount implements a new, 12-pin transmission system that is capable of transmitting large volumes of data at high speed—yet another design feature that looks toward the future.

Indeed, we can say that EOS R not only realizes the ideal high image quality that Canon always seeks to achieve, but is also a well-considered solution to the future of lenses and mount systems.

12-pin contact point on RF lens mount (camera end)

The potential of the RF mount’s new transmission system, as seen in the 12-pin contact point at the bottom of the mount.

 

Find out more about the other features of the EOS R in these articles:
8 EOS R Focusing Features We Can't Wait to Try
Reimagine Optical Excellence with EOS R
An Interview with the Developers: Introducing Canon's First Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera, EOS R

 


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