Canon announces EOS R6 Mark II
Just two years after the launch of the original EOS R6, Canon has unveiled its follow-up, the $4,499 EOS R6 Mark II.
Standout features include a higher-resolution 24.2-megapixel sensor (vs 20.1 megapixels in the Mark I) and faster shooting speeds - up to 40fps in RAW and silent mode. Alongside improved image quality and AF, Canon says it has also addressed the Mark I's issues with overheating in video modes, while also bumping the video specs, to deliver a much more well-rounded mirrorless experience.
Despite the larger 24.2 megapixel sensor, the R6 Mark II uses the same DIGIC X processor technology as its predecessor, while also foregoing the stacked sensor inside the R3, which remains a premium feature reserved for the company's higher end cameras for now.
However, Canon says the R6 Mark II will offer improved image quality beyond just the extra megapixels onboard, thanks to improved image processing.
In addition, low-light sensitivity should be better and Canon says that rolling shutter is reduced over the R6. The R6 Mark II will offer up to 8-stops co-ordinated control image stabilisation, as its predecessor did, and is also capable of focusing in light levels as low as -6.5EV, while retaining the ability to shoot up to ISO 102,400.
Autofocus performance sees a large jump compared to the R6, with Canon stating it is now more advanced than any of its previous models to date, including the R3.
The R6 Mark II can focus on people, animals (including horses) and vehicles, including motorcycles, cars, and trains. In addition, it has an auto-select option that lets the AI decide what to track if you prefer.
In eye tracking modes, Canon says it's now possible to specify which eye (left or right) should be given focus priority, and when the eyes can’t be detected, the R6 Mark II will focus on the face in shot instead. According to Canon, even if a person turns away for a moment, their head will continue to be tracked, and if the head isn’t visible the camera will go on to track the body.
While you can fire away at up to 40fps RAW in electronic shutter modes, (in addition to 20fps and 5fps options) the R6 Mark II is also capable of capturing up to 12fps in mechanical shutter.
Additionally, the R6 Mark II features a pre-burst mode that will capture an image 0.5 seconds before the shutter is pressed, and in RAW. This mode maxes out at 30fps for up to 191 frames, with every image recorded in a single CR3 file, and all image captures will work with AF tracking.
Finally, Canon says individual images can be extracted from this roll using Canon’s Digital Photo Professional software, or in camera, and saved as individual JPEG, HEIF or RAW files.
Video was one of the weaknesses of the R6, with that model only able to shoot 4K 60p for 30 minutes, and only for another 10 minutes or so after it cooled down enough to shoot again.
Those issues are effectively gone with the R6 Mark II, with Canon removing the 30-minute time limit for recording in all but the most extreme conditions. That said, cropped 4K 60p has a 50 minute time limit still, although 4K 30p has no limitations. All 4k footage is created by oversampling the sensor’s 6K output for maximum image quality.
The video specs are also improved. 1080p maxes out at 180fps, up from 120fps before, and there's increased dynamic range in all video modes thanks to HDR support via PQ and CLog3.
The pre burst mode also works in video modes, and is capable of capturing three or five seconds of video in a loop before the record button is pushed.
Build-wise the R6 Mark II remains largely similar to its predecessor, with a few subtle tweaks. The power/lock/off switch is now positioned at the right, which should make it less easy to knock.
In addition, there's a new video/photo mode switch that keeps those functions and settings separate. Otherwise, the R6 Mark II is a similar weight and size to the original R6, and according to early reports, has an identical grip, menus, control layout and handling.
As you'd expect, the body is dust and weather sealed on all external doors and inputs.
Additionally, the R6 Mark II features the same 3.69M dot EVF as the R6. However, the R6 Mark II has inherited the Optical View Finder view assist feature from the EOS R3, which provides a 'natural-looking' display retaining detail in shadows and highlights. The R6 Mark II is also compatible with the same LP-E6NH batteries and BG-R10 battery grip as the R6, but with the benefit of battery life being increased by approximately 50% when using the LCD screen.
The R6 Mark II will be supported by Canon Australia’s 5-year warranty when purchased from an authorised Canon Australia reseller, and it will launch from late November with an RRP of $4,499 (incl. GST), or with an, RF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens for $6,399 (incl. GST).