The best camera rumours of 2021
What new camera gear can we expect in the coming months? These are the best camera rumours and likely product announcements for 2021
The last few years have seen a major change in the camera market. DSLRs once dominated, but now we’re seeing mirrorless cameras becoming increasingly popular and overtaking mirrored camera sales. Even Canon and Nikon, companies that were keen to protect their DSLR sales, have got serious about mirrorless cameras.
We’re also seeing more full-frame and medium format cameras and increased emphasis on high-end features such as subject recognition and Eye AF in video mode.
Canon and Nikon introduced top-end professional-level DSLR cameras in 2020 but Nikon has announced that it is developing the Z9, a mirrorless flagship camera with 8K video capability. Surely it can’t be too much longer before Canon does something similar, perhaps announcing that an EOS R1 is in development.
It will be interesting to see which cameras are alongside the Sony A1s during the Olympic Games when they take place (hopefully) in the summer.
It’s an exciting time for photography, so let’s take a look at the new cameras that may be announced over the coming months. I’ll draw on our experience of camera development over the years to make a few predictions and examine some of the biggest camera rumors.
This post isn’t just a wishlist of features. I’ve taken camera trends, technological developments and big camera rumors into account to come up with my best guess of what we might see announced in 2021.
Camera Rumours Summary
I’ll look at the rumours surrounding all the camera manufacturers, but here’s a quick summary of the biggest camera rumors and what we’re expecting/hoping to see in the near future as well as the questions we want answering:
Canon really pulled out the stops in 2020 and delivered two incredibly exciting cameras, the Canon EOS R6 and Canon EOS R5, which use the RF mount that was introduced with the Canon EOS R. This mount has a flange diameter of 54mm, which is larger than the EF, EF-S and EF-M mounts, which means that faster lenses can be made. But what does the new lens mount mean for its APS-C format mirrorless cameras? Canon says the EOS M system will continue, but having four lens mounts is confusing, so we’re hoping for an RF-mount APS-C format camera in 2021.
Also, as great as the Canon EOS-1D X Mark III is, it’s a DSLR and Canon has just shown us what it can do with mirrorless technology. Is there a Canon EOS R1 waiting in the wings?
Fujifilm introduced the fabulous Fuji X-T4 in 2020 and it has sold well. More recently, we’ve seen the Fuji X-S10 introduced, featuring much of the same technology as the X-T4 but with an exposure mode dial rather than traditional exposure controls, making it an attractive APS-C format camera for photographers who aren’t into traditional controls.
The 100Mp Fujifilm GFX 100S has also been announced and it looks like the medium format camera to beat.
But what’s next for Fujifilm? When can we expect to see the X-T40? What does the company have in mind for its X100-series of APS-C format compact cameras? My guess is that it will be smaller than the X100V, but will it still have a hybrid viewfinder? And will there be a Fujifilm GFX 100R or a Fujifilm GFX 50S Mark II?
GoPro has been on good form recently and it still leads the way for action cams. As you can see in our GoPro Hero9 Black review, it’s an excellent camera for recording your adventures and its onboard stabilisation system is amazing. If the company follows its usual pattern we can expect to see a GoPro Hero10 Black in the autumn of 2021. Will it shrink back to the size of the Hero8 or stay the same size as the beefier Hero9?
Nikon now has a range of mirrorless cameras including the full-frame Nikon Z 6, Nikon Z 7, Nikon Z6 II, Nikon Z7 II and Nikon Z5 as well as the APS-C format Nikon Z50. They’re all great cameras, but what’s next for the company? Will we see an entry-level APS-C format model that’s designed to replace the now discontinued Nikon D3500? And following the recent development announcement, it seems that we can expect to see the Nikon Z9, a mirrorless version of the Nikon D6 with 8K video capability sometime in 2021. Will it be joined by the Nikon Z8?
Olympus had an eventful 2020 with the camera business being sold to a new owner, JIP and rebranded as OM Digital Solutions. Nevertheless, the UK team’s response to the pandemic has been excellent, developing a nurturing relationship with Olympus users. Its focus also appears to be on high-end cameras and lenses, so it will be interesting to see what comes next.
In 2020, Panasonic introduced the Lumix S5, an enticingly-priced full-frame mirrorless camera and the Lumix G100, which is aimed at vloggers. Could 2021 be the year that we see the incredibly popular Panasonic GH5 replaced?
Ricoh Pentax rumors
Pentax recently announced that it will be focusing on producing DSLR cameras, which seems like a smart move. While DSLR sales are declining, Pentax would be too far behind in mirrorless camera development to compete in the current market, but it could be the industry’s DSLR specialist.
Sony has been pushing Nikon and Canon for market position all the time, and the Sony A1 looks like being the camera of 2021 (it’s an early call), but both of those older camera manufacturers are now taking the mirrorless market much more seriously.
With the Sony A7S III and Sony A1 we’ve seen Sony finally listen to all the requests for more touch-control and a better menu system, we’re keeping our fingers crossed that these features and the A7S III’s vari-angle screen are carried over to the Sony A7 IV which must be waiting in the wings.
With new drone regulations coming into force at the start of 2021 in the UK and later in the year in Europe, there’s a race on to bring out the first certified drone. Our money is on DJI winning that race, but with the potential for lots of early sales, the competition is fierce.
Canon camera rumors 2021
Canon has got more serious about mirrorless cameras but what about APS-C format? We’d like to see a smaller camera with the RF mount as well as a mirrorless version of the EOS-1D X Mark III
Canon APS-C format camera with EOS R Mount
Despite their high image quality, Canon’s EOS M mirrorless system cameras models haven’t really caught the imagination of enthusiast photographers. Sony, Fuji and Olympus fare better with that audience. However, the Canon EOS M50 and more recent EOS M6 Mark II and ESO M50 Mark II show that the company’s engineers are on the right track. The EOS M6 Mark II’s autofocus system really impressed me during my testing for our review.
Read our Canon EOS M6 Mark II review
However, now that Canon has introduced its full-frame EOS R range, complete with the new RF lens mount, we’re wondering what will happen to the APS-C line. Will the company continue with the EOS M series and its EF-M lens mount or will it switch to the EOS R mount?
Canon representatives say it will, but with EF, EF-S, EF-M and R-mount lenses it’s all got a bit complicated for prospective Canon users. The muddy water needs to be cleared.
The sensor is a very expensive component in a digital camera, so one way to make them more affordable is to reduce the size of the sensor. Producing an EOS R camera with an APS-C sized sensor could help drive more sales. However, full-frame lenses produce a much bigger image circle than is needed by an APS-C sensor. So perhaps the mount will be the same but the lenses will be smaller with a smaller image circle? That would mean that APS-C format lenses could be mounted on the EOS R full-frame camera.
That’s a format that works for Nikon and Sony.
Best Canon EF-S lenses to start your collection
Canon EOS 7D Mark III or Canon EOS R7
With smartphones decimating the bottom end of the camera market, high-end cameras have become increasingly important. The Canon EOS 7D Mark II is an APS-C format camera that has found favour amongst enthusiast photographers, but it was launched in September 2014. It’s ripe for replacement.
The 7D II’s 20.2Mp sensor seems a bit low-res for a 2019 high-end Canon camera (although that didn’t stop Canon from introducing the EOS R6). I think we can expect a jump to at least 24Mp but 32.5Mp might be on the cards to match the Canon EOS 90D and EOS M6 Mark II. We might also see its dual Digic 6 processors upgraded to Digic 8 or even Digic 9 for even faster continuous shooting rates (the 7D Mark II hits 10fps) and maybe proper 4K video capability.
I’d also like to see a vari-angle touchscreen to make the 7D Mark III that little bit more versatile for stills and video.
Of course, the bigger question is, will Canon actually produce a DSLR replacement for the 7D Mark II? It’s a difficult call because the Canon 7D and 7D Mark II are very popular cameras amongst enthusiast photographers, many of whom are wedded to DSLR technology and the EF/EF-S mount. Canon won’t want to miss a potential sale.
But the flurry of Canon RF lens introductions and the minimalist upgrade made by the EOS M50 Mark II suggest that the company has shifted focus towards mirrorless photography and the RF mount in particular. It could be the Canon EOS R7, an APS-C format mirrorless camera that convinces droves of enthusiasts to switch from mirrored cameras.
Canon EOS 5D Mark V
The Canon 5D Mark IV is a great camera, but it’s getting on for five years old and we might reasonably expect a replacement to be in the offing. However, with Canon now offering the EOS R5 and R6, is there really room in the marketplace or demand for a semi-professional level DSLR from Canon? I’m going to put my neck out and say that I think it’s unlikely that Canon will have been directing resources into making the 5D Mark V.
When you think about the potential upgrades that you might want, they are all addressed by the R5.
The 5D series has been great, and it started the trend for video shooting with smaller interchangeable lens cameras, but its time may be up.
Canon EOS R1
Sony was the first to reveal a truly pro-level mirrorless camera but Canon and Nikon won’t want to be too far behind because professional sport and news photographers are pretty fickle about the cameras that they use. If the Sony A1 can deliver images that they can’t get with the Canon EOS-1D X Mark III or Nikon D6, they will switch. Their livelihood depends upon it.
There are rumors circulating that the Canon EOS R1 will feature mind-blowing specifications including a high-resolution full-frame sensor and global shutter. I’ve seen figures as high as 85Mp claimed for the R1’s sensor. That’s quite a leap, being almost twice the resolution of the R5.
If it turns out to be true, it will blow the Sony A1’s 50Mp resolution out of the water in one respect, but it also means that the R1 will have more of a challenge on its hands if noise is going to be kept under control at high ISO settings.
A global shutter would be fantastic. It means that rather than reading data from the sensor line-by-line, it’s all read simultaneously and there’s no rolling shutter effect with moving subjects. Obviously, having a global shutter with a high-resolution sensor is even more challenging than it is for a sensor with a more modest pixel count. All that data flying around also means that the issue of heat generation rears its head. Canon has been stung by this problem with the R5 and R6 and it will be very keen to avoid it with its top-flight camera.
It’s also thought that Canon will introduce a new autofocus system for the R1. Currently, its most advanced mirrorless cameras use Dual Pixel CMOS AF II phase detection focusing, and it works brilliantly, but there are reports of a Quad Pixel AF system for the R1. That should mean that the camera is better able to detect a subject and respond to changes in subject distance.
Naturally, everyone is expecting the Canon R1 to be able to shoot at very fast frame rates. The Canon R5 can shoot at up to 20fps with the electronic shutter, so it’s likely that the R1 will at least match that – but it will be hard to achieve it with a massively high resolution. The 50Mp Sony A1 can shoot at up to 30fps and Canon will have that in its sights.
Canon EOS R1 Price and Availability
A camera like the Canon EOS R1 takes a lot of planning and development. The EOS-1D X Mark III was timed to be available for the summer Olympic Games that should have taken place last year and that are currently planned for this summer. The Olympic Games were never part of the plan for the R1. Nevertheless, Canon won’t want to give Sony too much of a head start, so it wouldn’t surprise me if we start to get information about the R1 being drip-fed in the next couple of months.
As for the Canon EOS R1’s price? Well, the EOS-1D X Mark III retails for £6,499/$6,499 and the Canon R1 won’t be cheaper!
Fujifilm camera rumours 2021
Fujifilm’s X-series has been very successful, and the GFX is a popular medium format introduction, what could 2021 hold for the company?
To be honest, I haven’t a clue what letter Fujifilm will use to denote the successor to its X100V, but maybe they will make it simple and go for X100VI?
I love the Fujifilm X100 line of APS-C series compact cameras but I think the next camera may bring in a few changes. I expect the traditional exposure controls to stay and the APS-C format 26.1Mp X-Trans CMOS sensor and X Processor 4 are a safe bet, but I reckon the camera will be made smaller than previous incarnations. This may mean that the viewfinder, which until now has been a hybrid design that combines both an electronic and an optical finder, may just retain the electronic element. Maybe it will be the Fuji X-E4 but with a fixed lens?
Read More: Fujifilm X100V Review
The Fuji X-H1 is a nice camera but it’s not nearly as popular as the X-T3 and X-T4, so I wonder if Fujifilm will continue with it, or perhaps wait a little longer to upgrade it with a brand-new 5th generation X-Trans CMOS sensor, upgraded-stabilisation and more processing power. Naturally, we’d also expect it to feature the vari-angle screen that was introduced with the X-T4, rather than the 3-way tilting unit.
Read our Fujifilm X-H1 review
The Fujifilm X-T30 is a great little mirrorless camera with the same 26.1Mp backside-illuminated (BSI) APS-C format 4th generation X-Trans CMOS sensor and 4th generation X-Processor as is in the X-T3 and X-T4. It’s capable of producing great stills and video, and I love the handling apart from one aspect, the Q button which accesses the Quick menu is in the wrong place. It’s too easy to press it accidentally.
As great as the X-T30 is, it’s unlikely that Fujifilm will only change the position of the Q button for the X-T40. Perhaps it will also herald the 5th generation X-Trans CMOS sensor? It’s possible that Fujifilm will push up the pixel count for the new sensor, but 24-26Mp is something of a sweet spot. But perhaps instead Fuji will manage to squeeze in an image stabilisation unit and add an image-shifting high-resolution mode?
Fujifilm GFX 100R
We loved the medium format Fujifilm GFX 50S when we tested it, and the GFX 50R is an excellent alternative that is especially suited to use with the smaller prime lenses, but the introduction of the Fuji GFX 100S makes me wonder if we might see a 100Mp GFX R-series camera. My gut feeling is that we won’t because the GFX 50R was the smaller, more affordable alternative to the GFX 50S and Fujifilm pared back some features (for example, the viewfinder is fixed rather than removable) when it designed the GFX 100S.
Fujifilm GFX 50S Mark II
When Fujifilm introduced its first digital mirrorless medium format camera, the Fujifilm GFX50S, at Photokina in September 2016, the company’s representatives said that a key aim was to make medium format photography accessible to enthusiast photographers again. And while the GF50S’s original body-only price of £6,199/$6,500, put it beyond the pocket of most photographers, it was still more affordable than medium format cameras from Hasselblad and Phase One.
Inside the GFX50S is a 51.4Mp sensor measuring 43.8×32.9mm, 1.7x the size of a full-frame (36x24mm) camera’s sensor. Although it’s a Bayer pattern type sensor rather than an X-Trans CMOS chip, the GFX50S looks like a Fujifilm X-T4 on steroids. It has dedicated control dials for setting the sensitivity (ISO) and shutters speed, for example, and the aperture is set via a ring on the lenses.
In an innovative move for a medium format camera, the GFX50S’ screen can be tilted for low-level shooting in portrait or landscape orientation. Also, the 0.5-inch 3.69-million-dot OLED electronic viewfinder (EF) can be removed from the camera and the connection area covered, to create a smaller, lighter camera. Alternatively, there’s an optional tilting adapter that can be mounted on the camera under the viewfinder to enabled the EVF to be tilted and twisted for convenient viewing.
These features and design touches helped to make the GFX50S very versatile with performance beyond what we used to expect of a medium format camera.
Fujifilm pared things back a bit for the GFX50R. It has much of the same technology as the GFX50S but the electronic viewfinder is incorporated into the rectangular rangefinder-esque body.
This was followed by the GFX100, a twin-gripped mirrorless medium format camera with a 102Mp sensor, a retail price of around £10,000/$10,000 and image quality that knocks your socks off.
Then in January this year, Fujifilm announced the GFX100S, a smaller camera than the GFX50S with the same sensor as the GFX100 and a retail price of £5,499/$5,999. In the downsizing process, the GFX100S lost the interchangeable viewfinder (it has a fixed 0.5-inch type with 3.69million dots) and waved goodbye to the sensitivity (ISO) and shutter speed dials. Instead, it has an exposure mode dial on the left of its top plate and front and rear command dials to control the exposure settings. It’s less like a Fujifilm X-T series camera, but some might argue that it had broader appeal as a result.
That’s a lot of preamble to get to talking about the Fujifilm GFX50S Mark II that is rumoured to be in the pipeline, but I think some context is required.
If Fujifilm is going to introduce a GFX50S Mark II, there are a couple of routes that it could take. It could, for example, use the existing GFX50S body and refresh the interior with an updated sensor and more processing power to boost performance. Or, it could use the GFX100S body and put in a 50MP sensor.
The second option would be cheaper and easier for the company, which would bring the price of the camera down, thus moving a step further to putting medium format cameras back into the hands of enthusiast photographers.
Of the two options, I think the second is far more likely. While the GFX50S Mark II might feature a new 50Mp sensor, I’d be perfectly happy with the original backed up by increased processing power to boost the read-out and autofocus speeds.
Will GoPro continue to dominate in 2021 or will DJI steal its crown?
We’re GoPro fans here at Jabber HQ, but there are still things that we’d like to see improved for the next incarnation, which we’ve no doubt will be called the GoPro Hero10 Black. The GPS and motion sensors, voice control, full-colour touch screen and HyperSmooth image stabilisation, for example, are greater but the resolutions and frame rates could do with some upgrading. We’d like to see it step up form a 12Mp camera and offer 4K video at up to 120fps. Follow the link to read more about the GoePor Hero10 Black specs that we’d like to see.
Read our GoPro Hero9 Black Review
Nikon camera rumors 2021
Will we see an entry-level APS-C format Nikon Z camera and a top-flight full-framer or two in 2020?
Nikon Z9: a flagship full-frame mirrorless camera
The Nikon Z7 II is a high-end camera, but it’s not really aimed at the pros who use the D5 or D6. It’s these photographers who are being enticed over to Sony by the A9, A9 II and now the Sony A1, which has an incredible specification. However, the recent development announcement of the Nikon Z9 means that there’s another option in the pipeline.
Nikon hasn’t revealed a lot of detail about the Nikon Z9, but it says that it will be capable of recording 8K video. That means that its sensor will have at least around 35million effective pixels. It will be interesting to see if Nikon is going to push it up as far as 45Mp to match the Canon EOS R5, or 50Mp to match the Sony A1.
Any of those options make a significant leap over the 20.8Mp of the Nikon D6. However, the D6’s pixel count is deliberately modest to keep file sizes down and enable excellent low-light performance while meeting the demands of professional sports and news photographers.
It’s possible that Nikon will produce two flagship mirrorless cameras, perhaps calling them the Nikon Z8 and Nikon Z9. Just like the Nikon Z6 and Z7, and Nikon Z6 II and Z7 II, the Nikon Z8 and Z9 might share all the same features and technology apart from their sensors (and consequently their continuous shooting rate and burst depth).
The Nikon Z8 might have the same 20.8Mp sensor as the Nikon D6, while the Z9 has a 35, 45 or 50Mp sensor.
Naturally, we expect the Nikon Z9 and Z8 will have high continuous shooting rates. The D6 and Z6 II can both shoot at up to 14fps (frames per second) and the Z9 will need to at least match that.
It’s possible that the Nikon Z8 will push higher, making it Nikon’s flagship speed and action mirrorless camera, while the Z9 is about resolution.
Nikon added Eye detection AF for humans and animals when shooting video on the Z6 II and Z7 II, and it’s handy but not rock-solid reliable. More testing, work on the algorithms and even more processing power could make the Z8 and Z9 a winner in this regard.
Now that Nikon has released the above image of the Z9, we know that its shape and size are closer to the D6 than current Z-series cameras. That’s good news for the thousands of pro photographers who are comfortable with the shape and build of the Dx-series. It also gives the camera more space for extra processing power and heat sinking – heat generation is a major issue with high-resolution video capture.
We can see that the Z9 is a dual-gripped camera and that both grips have a shutter button plus a command dial and a few control buttons within easy reach – just like the D6.
There are likely to be more direct controls on the Nikon Z9 and Z8, but the interface may be closer to the Z7 II and Z6 II than the D6.
Nikon D6 users will also expect the Z9 to have an ethernet connection and dual card ports, probably CFexpress Type B, but if Nikon switches to Type A, the Z9 would be able to use SD-type media as well.
Sony A9 Review
Nikon’s D5XXX line of DSLRs is a good ‘entry-level’ model with a few more niceties than the D3XXX series. The vari-angle touchscreen, for instance, helps with creative photography and videography. However, things have moved on a bit since the D5600 was announced in November 2016.
The D5600 relies on contrast-detection focusing in live view mode. We’d like to see that upgraded to a hybrid system. Including phase-detection focusing would boost its speed and reliability. And maybe the AF system that’s available when the viewfinder is in use could be upgraded to 51-points? That would be nice, giving greater coverage across the frame.
In addition, the video specification could do with boosting from Full HD to 4K.
Of course, there’s a strong possability that Nikon will opt for a mirrorless version of the D5700. That would be a smart move. Perhaps it will be the Z400 or Z500 while the most entry-level model is the Z4000 or Z5000?
Nikon Z3000 or Z4000
Nikon may have announced an APS-C format mirrorless camera, but with a body-only price of £849/$857, the Z50 is beyond the budget of most novices and there’s room for something more affordable.
I’m just guessing at the names, but Nikon Z3000 or Z4000 could be good names for more entry-level models. If the top-level model is to be the Z9, fitting above the Z6 II and Z7 II, which in turn sit above the Z50, the Z500, Z400 or Z300 could be good names for the next model down. The most entry-level model might be the Z3000 or Z4000.
Now that Nikon Japan is listing the D3500 as discontinued it seems even more likely that we’ll see an entry-level Nikon Z-series camera. Nikon says it is still committed to DSLR cameras, but mirrorless cameras are gaining in popularity and we’ve yet to hear anything about a D3600 to replace teh D3500.
The D3XXX line has always been very important to the company. It draws in new photographers to the Nikon system. The D3200, D3300, D3400 and D3500 have also been extremely popular. They’re great first ‘serious’ cameras. It’s natural that the manufacturer will want to have something similar in its mirrorless line.
It would be great to see a mirrorless version of the Nikon D3500, complete with Nikon’s Guide Mode to help novices learn about photography.
Read More 6 cameras that prove you don’t need the latest models
Read our Nikon D780 review
Olympus camera rumours 2021
Its new owner is bound to make some big changes during 2021
Given the changes that have taken place at Olympus during 2020, it’s hard to call what will happen in 2021. Judging by the recent firmware upgrade to the Olympus OM-D E-M1X, which introduces Bird detection AF, and the new Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 150-400mm F4.5 TC1.25x IS PRO, Olympus (or OM Digital Solutions as we should say now) is going after wildlife photographers who want to lighten their burden.
Panasonic camera rumours 2021
Will Panasonic turn its attention to Micro Four Thirds in 2021?
Panasonic G Series
The Panasonic Lumix G9 sits alongside the GH5 and GH5S as Panasonic’s flagship stills camera. It’s getting on a bit as it was announced in November 2017, while the GH5S was announced in January 2018. After all the recent attention that it has paid to its full-frame cameras, in 2021, Micro Four Thirds fans will be looking to Panasonic to update some of its older models to demonstrate its commitment to the format.
It’s worth noting that the L-mount is suitable for use on APS-C as well as full-frame cameras. Panasonic has stated that it is committed to Micro Four Thirds, but if it wanted to, it could introduce an APS-C format camera with the same mount as the S1 and S1R. Just saying.
Panasonic has put a lot of marketing into the L-mount cameras, it would be interesting to see some sales figures for them.
Panasonic Lumix GH6
In a recent briefing about the firmware updates for the Panasonic Lumix S1/S1R/S5/S1H and BGH1, Yoshiaki Goto, Panasonic’s European General Manager confirmed that the company will continue to introduce more Micro Four Thirds lenses and cameras, including a GH5 Successor.
Panasonic’s GH5 has been very popular amongst videographers, but it was launched in January 2017, and the marketplace has changed a lot since then. Sony has done particularly well and it is putting a lot of effort into meeting the needs of videographers.
In the early days of the Panasonic GH-series, Panasonic deliberately made the cameras bigger to make them more acceptable to DSLR users and to help them seem more serious. Today, however, things have changed and with the right interface, smaller, lighter cameras are generally preferred.
With the Lumix S5, Panasonic recognised that its S1-series of full-frame mirrorless cameras are seen as being quite big and cumbersome. The GH5 is also big for a Micro Four Thirds camera and it’s possible that the company will seek to change this with the Panasonic GH6, making it a more compact alternative to the Sony A7S III and other full-frame or APS-C format cameras.
The Panasonic GH6 also needs to distinguish itself clearly from cameras like the Panasonic S1H and the box-like GBH1. The GBH1 is really designed for use in a rig with a system built around it. In contrast, the GH6 needs to be a small and light fully-fledged camera that can be taken anywhere and set-up quickly to record great-quality video.
The Panasonic GH5 has a maximum video resolution of C4K (4096×2160), will Panasonic look to push the limits of a Four Thirds sensor and enable the GH6 to produce 6K or even 8K footage? The small sensor makes keeping noise under control a challenge at high-resolutions, but if Panasonic can crack that nut, the GH6 could be a major success.
Raw video capability would also a popular upgrade for the GH6. Of course, this usually means outputting to an external recorder such as the Atomos Ninja V, but not always, the Canon EOS R5, for example, can record 8K raw video internally to a CFexpress card.
It would also be good to see an improvement to the GH5’s AF system for the GH6. Panasonic has stuck firmly with contrast detection while other manufacturers have opted for phase detection or hybrid systems. Despite the improvements made to Panasonic’s contrast-detection system over the years, its performance still doesn’t match that of a good hybrid or phase-detection AF system.
It would be great if Panasonic switched to a hybrid or phase-detection system.
SEE MORE: Best travel cameras you can depend on
Ricoh Pentax Rumors
Pentax hasn’t really been chasing for a while now, but it’s promising a new camera in 2021
Pentax has been pretty quiet recently but it did pop its head up briefly to let us know that the 25.7Mp APS-C format K-3 Mark III will be along in February 2021 – well that didn’t happen. But maybe we will hear something soon, after all the pandemic has caused a lot of delays.
What we know so far is that the K-3 Mark III will be a DSLR that according to Pentax will ‘define the future of SLRs’. It could be interesting, but the main marketing messages seems to be that its an SLR with an optical viewfinder rather than a mirrorless camera with an electronic viewfinder.
Pentax cameras have some novel technology and they produce great images, but they don’t major on things like autofocus speed or fast responses. It’s going to be interesting to see what the K-3 Mark III brings.
Pentax K-3 Mark III: Specs, Release Date Confirmed
Sigma Rumors 2021
Sigma is part of the L-Mount Alliance and has plans beyond making L-mount lenses
Sigma surprised some with the Sigma fp by managing to make the ‘world’s smallest and lightest’ full-frame mirrorless camera. Also, it didn’t use it opted for a 24.6Mp BSI-CMOS Bayer sensor rather than Sigma’s usual choice of a Foveon sensor.
Does this mean that the company will introduce another L-mount camera with a Foven sensor? If it does, our bet is that it opts for an APS-C format model.
Read more: Sigma fp becomes the world’s smallest, lightest full-frame camera
Sony camera rumours 2021
Its full-frame mirrorless system cameras have caused a major shift in the camera market, but can Sony maintain the momentum?
Sony Alpha A5200 or A7000
Recently Sony has focused its efforts on high-end and enthusiast-level cameras, but I think (hope) a replacement for the Sony Alpha a5100 could be just around the corner. The a5000-line is now Sony’s entry-level series of mirrorless system cameras, so the company will aim to keep the price down for any new models.
This makes it likely to continue without a built-in viewfinder. The pixel count is also likely to stay at 24million. However, the sensitivity range could be pushed higher to match the Sony A6300, A6400 and A6500 (ISO 100-25,600 expandable to 51,200) and improve low-light capability.
Perhaps we will also see an improvement to the autofocus system, but with 204-points the A5100’s AF system isn’t exactly lacking in this area.
And, as suggested below, perhaps we’ll see a change in the camera’s name. Could it be the A7000?
Sony A7 IV
The Sony A7 III is a great camera in many respects, but a tilting screen isn’t as good as a vari-angle screen, the touch-control is very limited and the menu system is long and complex. Sony changed all of this for the A7S III and even added dual Function menus so you can have one perfectly suited to stills and the other for video-shooting.
It’s unlikely that the A7IV will get the A7SIII’s 0.64-inch type 9,437,184-dot OLED electronic viewfinder, but we’d settle for a camera with its much-improved handling!
READ MORE: Sony A7 IV: Possible specifications and what we’d like to see
DJI looks set to build on its success while action cam manufacturer
DJI Phantom Pro 5 Rumors
There have also been rumours circulating for ages that the announcement of the DJI Phantom 5 isn’t too far away, but we’re still waiting. It’s been quite some time since we saw an update to DJI’s Phantom or Inspire range of drones. Will 2021 and the new drone regulations see something new in the manufacturer’s high-end drone ranges?
In the last couple of years, we’ve seen some interesting smaller drones from DJI, for example, the Mavic Air has been updated to the Mavic Air 2, and the Mavic Mini came along towards the end of 2019 but has now been replaced by the DJI Mini 2.
The Mini and Mini2 are especially interesting because they weigh less than 250g. Once the new drone regulations come in, they will still need to be registered because they’ve got cameras mounted, but you’ll be able to fly them pretty much wherever you like as long as you’re not trespassing or endangering people or property.
What many drone pilots are waiting for though, is the first drone that is certified as class C2 under the regulations. This will weigh under 4Kg but pilots with the A2 Certificate of Competency will be able fly down to 30m from uninvolved people or 5m from uninvolved people in the slow mode. That will make life easier for a lot of hobbyist and commercial pilots.
Interestingly, when the DJI FOV was announced, we asked DJI about its classification and we were told that there currently aren’t any notified bodies for agreeing the classifications.