Canon Inc.'s Go Tokura spoke to The Video Mode about the new EOS 5D Mark IV, the future possibilities for 8K in DSLRs and why EF lenses will become better for shooting video
At the recent Photokina show in Köln, Germany, The Video Mode got the opportunity to sit down to talk with Go Tokura (Chief Executive, Image Communication Products Operations, at Canon Inc. in Japan) to discuss the video features of the new full-frame EOS 5D Mark IV DSLR and the possibilities for future 8K products from Canon. In a revealing interview he explained the thinking behind the main improvements in the 30.4 megapixel 5D Mark IV and why the movie making features in EOS DSLRs are now essential…
What would Canon say are the most important improvements in the EOS 5D Mark IV compared to the 5D Mark III?
‘Firstly, of special importance for the 5D Mark IV is total advance. We are [always] aiming to improve every aspect of the specification – that’s a wonderful, big target and challenge for us. There is 4K and, of course, the Dual Pixel CMOS sensor. We have many others but those are the two major improvements.’
Who is the 5D Mark IV mostly aimed at?
‘It’s for everyone. The EOS 5D Mark IV is an all-rounder. That’s really why we’ve upgraded every kind of feature.’
What are the most important improvements that the Dual Pixel CMOS sensor brings to the camera?
‘The autofocus speed is much faster for shooting movies and in Live View.’
Was 4K video added in the Mark IV due to customer demand?
‘Yes, that’s true.’
In terms of the video features of the Mark IV how significant an improvement are they compared to the video features of the Mark III?
‘We kept all of the modes in video and we added 4K, so that’s the big difference. Of course, the Dual Pixel CMOS sensor has added quite a lot of strength to the video mode.’
What are the main benefits of the sensor for stills?
‘The sensitivity is higher. It gives a higher dynamic range and better lower light performance.’
Is there a way that you can put a number on how much better it is?
‘The top ISO is raised and we can say that everything is 1.6 times better; in terms of image quality.’
Did you find moving on from the Mark III that there was a demand to have more megapixels in the Mark IV?
‘Somehow the demand for the higher megapixels never stops. [It’s] always [there]!’
Will almost all Canon cameras have Dual Pixel CMOS sensors in future?
‘Roughly speaking that is the intention but maybe because of the cost [it won’t get to all cameras].’
When the 5D Mark II came out in 2008 Canon didn’t realise how popular the video feature on that camera was going to be… since that happened many people are using DSLR cameras for video, so how important are the video features in the Mark IV and the other EOS cameras?
‘Very important. We know that many people are using the DSLR cameras for movie making, even consumers. According to Canon USA over 30% of users are making movies, so that’s why we are continuously improving the movie features [of the cameras]. At the same time, as well, more of the future lenses will be more movie-friendly – silent or smooth lenses.’
What do you see as the possibilities for going beyond 4K in DSLRs?
‘It may be the next milestone could be 8K but that’s a big jump. It takes time to get every 8K feature within the same body.’
Would it be realistic to see 8K in a Canon DSLR by 2020, for example?
‘We want to try! [Achieving good speed] for processing and in addition to that the heat is a real issue. That’s why we have fans in the [Canon] video camcorders but it’s really difficult to have a fan in a DSLR camera.’