All serious and hobby photographers have a dream – getting their hands on a professional grade DSLR. The popularity of DLSR’s has fueled a booming camera hire and rental industry as well. Before DSLR, photography wasn’t so easy and effortless, and Canon has a large part to play in making DSLRs so popular.
- History of Canon DSLRs and Arrival of Canon 5D – The first Canon DSLR came out in 2000 and was called D30. It had a camera of 3.1MP that produced groundbreaking images. Despite the low pix count being an issue, D30 was still better than the available DSLRs during that time (Nikon’s DSLR was 2.7MP). At that time, photographers were still using film and DSLRs weren’t that common. Rectifying D30’s low pixel issue, Canon came up with D60 with 6.3MP. The cost of 1st Gen DSLRs was between $2000 – 3000 and this amount was only enough for the body of the camera. Then Canon introduced its first scene-changing DSLR called Canon 5D which completely changed the future of the photography industry and made DSLRs the new norm for camera hire and everything else.
- DSLRs And 5D’s Popularity – Before 5D, 35mm camera films were used. This meant that when the viewfinder was used, the focal range was 50mm. Since APS-C sized sensors were used before this invention by Canon, the crop factor was a real issue for all photographers. Price was another factor. Before 5D, photographers had Canon EOS-1Ds but the 5D cost and weighed half as much and the previous DSLRs. It had features like CMOS sensor, 12.8MP, LCD screen of 2.5” and compatibility with every lens produced by Canon from 1987. The ISO range also offered use in low light situations, came with wide angle capabilities and basically, made digital shooting completely different. DSLRs weren’t truly ‘digital’ until 5D came along.
- Canon’s Marketing Strategy and Popularity – Canon’s marketing strategy was simple – allow the average consumer to take magazine quality images by offering affordability and reliability. Creation was the focus of their marketing campaigns. It all started with their ‘Beyond ‘good enough’’ approach and continued till ‘Project Imaginat10n’. Other reasons why Canon is so popular include – affordability, easy handling and innovation.
- Canon vs. Nikon vs. Panasonic – Canon has made its name by focusing on professional cameras, flashes, and lens. The professional experience offered by Canon is unmatched. Simple additions like CPS have made consumers extremely happy because of Canon’s ease of use and effortless servicing capabilities.
- Nikon – Nikon’s strengths are similar to Canon’s as they have focused on professional cameras and accessories as well. However, they have fallen behind because it has taken them a long time to catch up to the ‘connected camera’ philosophy that other brands are doing so well at.
- Panasonic – Panasonic only became a household name in cameras when the mirrorless technology was taken up by them. They have completely changed the video industry with their amazing video quality. Their biggest failure has been in the marketing department and despite having cameras compared to Canon and Nikon, they have lagged behind in major countries like the US.
- Future of DSLR and Canon – The future would involve compact and lightweight DSLRs (like Canon EOS Rebel SL1). The technology of mirrorless cameras would be improved in order to make them competitive to DSLRs. Other improvements can be expected in sensor design, image quality, ISO settings, frame rates, and video to stills conversion. Canon’s future is moving in sync with DSLRs’ as they are trying to get into the connected camera wireless technology experience.
It has also made creating quality images for just about every industry, affordable. Whether you’re taking photos for corporate transportation services, weddings, plumbing, construction or more. Getting quality, stunning images have the lowest barrier of entry now than ever before.
There is no excuse. This always means that the bar for “standard” quality has been significantly raised and getting noticed as a photographer is harder than ever. Such is life.
In their history, DSLRs have always worked towards reaching out to the consumers and this is one of the biggest reasons behind their popularity.
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