Third time’s a charm? Canon EOS M3 coming to USA, we post First Shots from their latest mirrorless ILC


posted Thursday, August 27, 2015 at 12:00 AM EDT


After being announced back in February for both the European and Asian markets, the Canon EOS M3 is finally coming Stateside -- and we've got First Shots! After a rather lackluster response, at least in the US, to the original EOS M, Canon -- or Canon USA, at least -- decided to hold off on releasing the subsequent EOS M2, which saw only very minor tweaks, as well as the more substantially upgraded M3 for the American market.

Now it appears Canon has changed course with the announcement of official availability of the EOS M3 for the US. 

For those unaware, the Canon EOS M3 takes Canon's nascent mirrorless system in a new direction, focusing more assuredly on the advanced enthusiast photographer, as well as the professional photog looking for a lighter, compact secondary camera to their big EOS DSLR. The original M was much more simplistic, with a very PowerShot-esque shape, design and limited external controls. But now, the EOS M3 sports a beefier body with a DSLR-like protruding hand grip and more external controls, including a PASM mode dial, dedicated exposure compensation dial and even a customizable top-deck function button.   

Furthermore, while the original EOS M continued with their tried-and-true 18MP APS-C CMOS sensor and DIGIC 5 image processor, the EOS M3 thankfully upgrades both with their latest, higher-resolution 24.2MP APS-C chip and DIGIC 6 CPU, respectively. Essentially, the EOS M3 is a Canon T6s or T6i in smaller, lighter package. 

But enough talk, you want to know what the image quality is like, right? Well, you're in luck. We've gotten our hands on the EOS M3 just recently, and it's been spending some time down in our test lab. We're now able to share with you our First Shots set of lab sample images, so pull up a chair, power on that high-res monitor and get to pixel-peeping! For those wanting a short-cut, given that the EOS M3 shares the same sensor and processor of he T6s/i, spoiler alert: the image quality is practically identical, which is, nevertheless, quite good.

So, head over to our Canon EOS M3 Samples page for our First Shots set of lab test shots, which includes full-resolution downloads of straight-from-camera JPEGs, at both the default level of noise reduction and without any NR at all NR disabled*. Plus, there are full-res RAW files available for download as well for your own comparisons and analysis. Below are a couple comparisons of the new EOS M3 against its predecessor as well as against the T6s. Be sure to head over to our Comparometer to compare the EOS M3's test shots against any other camera we've tested. 

(*Even with Noise Reduction set to the lowest setting, in-camera JPEG processing still applies some amount of NR.)

ISO 100: Canon EOS M3 (left) vs EOS M (right)
ISO 100: Canon EOS M3 (left) vs T6s (right)
ISO 3200: Canon EOS M3 (left) vs EOS M (right)
ISO 3200: Canon EOS M3 (left) vs T6s (right)

As for pricing and availability, the Canon EOS M3 is set to be available in early October 2015 for around $679.99 for a body-only configuration, in either a black or white color. A one-lens kit with the EF-M 18-55mm IS STM will also be available with the black or white body color for an estimated retail price of $799.99. Additionally, a two lens kit featuring the EF-M 18-55mm IS STM and the EF-M 55-200mm IS STM lens will be sold for around $1,049. 

For those looking just for lenses, Canon is also making over the full current range of EF-m-mount lenses available for an early October release. The suggested retail prices are as follows:

  • EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM -- $399.99

  • EF-M 22mm f/2 STM -- $249.99

  • EF-M 55-200mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM -- $349.99

Stay tuned as our full Canon EOS M3 Review gets underway!

Canon EOS M3 First ShotsCanon EOS M3 Overview

Ready to pre-order? Purchasing this camera, or any other product, from one of our trusted affiliates below helps support the site!

  • Canon EOS M, body-only, $679.99 -- B&H (black)

  • Canon EOS M + 18-55mm Kit, $799.99 -- B&H (black, white)

  • Canon EOS M + 18-55mm & 55-200mm Kit, $1,049 -- B&H (black)

  • Canon EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM, $399.99 -- B&H

  • Canon EF-M 55-200mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM, $349.99 -- B&H

  • Canon EF-M 22mm f/2 STM, $249.99 -- B&H