Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor


London, UK, 6 November 2013 – Canon today announces an upgrade that brings Dual Pixel CMOS AF functionality (DAF) to its professional EOS C100 camcorder. First launched with the EOS 70D DSLR, Dual Pixel CMOS AF is a ground-breaking, Canon-developed technology that expands shooting possibilities by providing smooth, fast, high-performance continuous autofocus in large sensor video cameras. The EOS C100 is the first-ever camcorder to feature this technology, and its addition provides even greater creative flexibility in everyday use.

Making it easier for single shooters to capture outstanding moving images was part of the core design philosophy for the EOS C100. DAF further enhances creative freedom by providing greater accuracy and control of focus when shooting – a crucial factor given the shallow depth of field made possible by the combination of fast glass and a large image sensor. Continuous autofocus is supported by all Canon EF lenses¹, whilst the existing One-shot AF function becomes approximately twice as fast with any of the 104 supported lenses.

Upgraded performance

Dual Pixel CMOS AF is a sensor-based, phase detection Auto Focus (AF) technology designed to support video shooting, and a compatible CMOS sensor was included in the original design of the EOS C100. Following further technical development since launch, the camera can now be upgraded to offer users enhanced functionality and added value.

While the underlying Dual Pixel CMOS AF sensor technology in the EOS C100 is similar to that found in the Canon EOS 70D digital SLR, it has been adapted to fit the capabilities of the EOS C100. It has been optimised specifically for video shooting, and provides fast, natural focussing in a familiar visual style. As such, capturing a subject and retaining sharp focus, even when moving, has never been easier.

Kieran Magee, Director of Professional Marketing, Canon Europe, comments: “We’re dedicated to developing innovative imaging products that also deliver great value to our customers. We’re very proud of our existing Cinema EOS system range, and we’re continuously listening to our customers to identify ways that we can enhance our products to allow them to push their own creative boundaries. This upgrade, which brings Dual Pixel CMOS AF sensor technology to the EOS C100, is further evidence of this commitment.”


The upgrade is a paid-for option, and utilises the existing Super35mm sensor in the EOS C100. It will be performed at Canon’s network of Regional Competence Centres (RCC) and is expected to be available in Q1 2014.

¹Excluding manual lenses, including the EF Cinema lens range

HDW : I personally think this is tinkering as the camera needs upgraded to 720 50p or better, most professionals don’t use autofocus but Panasonic and Sony both pack 1080 50p into the AF101 and the FS700, Canon needs to have a good look at themselves and offer upgrades that matter to the end user, not having any 50p frame rate in the C100 is commercially crippling.

While Canon give the C100 better autofocus Sony add the ability to film at 240fps on the F5, a far more useful feature taking further sales from the popular C300.    


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

7 thoughts on “Canon C100 paid upgrade for better autofocus ?

  1. I agree with you. Autofocus is not a high priority while frame rates are. I also question what the quality of the sensor will become after this kind of “upgrade” has been implemented. Though, I do look forward to further hardware upgrades I wish we didn’t have to fork over cash (after paying already a somewhat hefty price for the camera body) for these kind of enhancements. That said, I would pay for frame rates, slo-mo, codec improvements. I guess all those requests result in buying a C300. Anyway, I appreciate your thoughts. Have to wait and see how this fares. Thanks!

  2. believe that Canon does not listen to anything the needs of customers, and that this is a sales gimmick for that type of user who is not very familiar with this type of cameras. I agree with you that there are other priorities such as 50p and another, I personally do not understand the strategy of Canon in that price range we already had a codec XF 422 to 50 mbit with the XF300, mounted on the C300 because the price rises up to 14000 euro? And then the C100 would have placed in a price range of around 3000 € in my opinion they would have sold more …. I still do not understand

  3. Im very curious how the dual pixel AF affects image quality, moire and low light. Most things in life have some kind of price associated with them.

    Look at the C100’s competition. The Sony FS100 is $1000 cheaper, has auto-everything using e mount lenses and has 60p with a great codec.

    Yeah….Canon does some odd things sometimes.

  4. If Canon were to upgrade to 1080p60 and add a 4:2:2 codec then why would people buy the C300?? They’re not a non-profit company, they need to have a strategy to make money. Also, this is an “optional upgrade” so if you don’t want to get the upgrade you don’t have to. The firmware update coming up soon will add 80,000 ISO plus a other features to the C100 which far beyond anything the AF101 can achieve. Also, as a long time Panasonic user, I felt they were the ones who didn’t listen to customers when instead of making the upgrade to 10 bit output and 1080p60 a hardware option they instead required current users to buy a whole new camcorder. What they could have done is coming out with a new camcorder with a better codec, frame rate, sensor, etc but instead they just made minor updates and called it a new camcorder. IMHO I think Canon is doing a great job as well as Sony and while they don’t have identical camcorders…isn’t that the point??

  5. Any news in the cost? If Canon have to fit modified parts or even just flash and calibrate then a small charge is understandable I guess.

    Most manufacturers just leave old video products behind and never bother addressing issues.

    AFAIK noody expects VIDEO AF to be any good on a Canon DSLR type camera – maybe decent AF would suit some users?

    Yes 50p would be better – it’s continued omission is puzzling.

  6. The FS100 seems like a good camera but it lacks ND filters, I’ve heard the ergonomics are quite poor, and the continuous autofocus isn’t near what the Dual Pixel offers. I think there are lots of great cameras out there, none of them are perfect and each offer advantages and disadvantages.

  7. I think this upgrade will have a really positive effect on those that are using the new gimbal handheld rigs like the Movi and Defy G5. This type of AF will enable the use of those rigs without the need for an additional wireless follow focus option (provided you’re using the right lenses). Obviously, it won’t be perfect, but the One-Man-Band operations out there will find it very useful.

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