Canon Just Announced Their Newest DSLR, The 1D X

Well the rumors were right. Canon just announced the 1DX, a rapid fireing sports shooter to compete with Nikon's D3s. Check below to read the full press release and read about all the new features that Nikon will trump with the D800 in a few weeks. I'm kidding, I'm just a jealous Nikon shooter.

The Full Press Release:
LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., October 18, 2011 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, is proud to introduce a completely revolutionized EOS-1D series camera, the Canon EOS-1D X Digital SLR camera.* As the new leader in Canon’s arsenal of professional DSLRs, the EOS-1D X will be a high-speed multimedia juggernaut replacing both the EOS-1Ds Mark III and EOS-1D Mark IV models in Canon’s lineup. Enhancing the revolutionary image quality of the EOS-1Ds and speed capabilities of the EOS-1D series, the EOS-1D X DSLR features an 18-megapixel full-frame Canon CMOS sensor, Dual DIGIC 5+ Imaging Processors, 14-bit A/D data conversion and capable of shooting an incredible 12 frames-per-second (fps). Canon’s EOS DSLR cameras and accessories have a long-standing legacy of providing high-quality results to professionals in a wide range of markets, including sports, nature, cinematography, wedding and commercial studios. The addition of this new model will help take this tradition to a whole new level.

The EOS-1D X announcement comes on the heels of Canon’s recent manufacturing milestone with the production of the Company’s 50-millionth EOS-series SLR camera in September of 2011. Furthermore, Canon will achieve yet another milestone at the end of this month producing the 70-millionth EF lens.

“The EOS-1D X represents the re-invention of the EOS-1Ds and EOS-1D series, combining new proprietary Canon technologies with the culmination of customer feedback and requests from the field. We are proud to introduce this camera to the worldwide community of professional photographers and cinematographers with the features and capabilities they need to capture the great moments that display their talent,” stated Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies and Communications Group, Canon U.S.A.

The Camera With Three Brains

The EOS-1D X features three DIGIC processors, including Dual DIGIC 5+ image processors capable of delivering approximately 17 times more processing speed than DIGIC 4, and a dedicated DIGIC 4 for metering and AF control. In conjunction with the newly developed high-performance 18-megapixel full-frame Canon CMOS image sensor, the Dual DIGIC 5+ processors provide high-speed continuous shooting, lower noise, and a significant increase in data processing speed than previous EOS-1D models. This new level of data processing speed allows the EOS-1D X to perform many functions including chromatic aberration correction for various Canon EF lenses in-camera instead of through post-production software. The DIGIC 4 processor utilizes a new 100,000-pixel RGB Metering Sensor for enhanced exposure accuracy with color and face detection, and works together with the camera’s new EOS iTR (Intelligent Tracking and Recognition) AF.

The EOS-1D X employs a completely new imaging sensor, producing the lowest noise of any EOS digital camera to date for stunning portraiture and studio work. The new 18-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor utilizes large pixels – 1.25 microns larger than those in the EOS-1D Mark IV sensor and .55 microns larger than those in the EOS 5D Mark II sensor – together with gapless microlenses to achieve enhanced light gathering efficiency, higher sensitivity and less noise at the pixel level. The new sensor has improved on the already very high signal-to-noise ratio of sensor output of earlier EOS models for outstanding image quality, even in extremely low light. When combined with the Dual DIGIC 5+ imaging processors the results are stunning. The images produced with the EOS-1D X camera’s new sensor are so clean that files can easily be up-sized if necessary for even the most demanding high-resolution commercial applications. The EOS-1D X will also feature new Ultrasonic Wave Motion Cleaning (UWMC), Canon’s second generation self-cleaning sensor unit, which utilizes carrier wave technology to remove smaller dust particles from the sensor and it includes a new fluorine coating on the infrared absorption glass to help repel dust.

The low-light capability of the EOS-1D X is evident in its incredible ISO range and ability to photograph in extremely low-light conditions. Adjustable from ISO 100 to 51,200 within its standard range, the new model offers a low ISO 50 setting for studio and landscape photography and two high settings of 102,400 at H1 and 204,800 at H2, ideal for law enforcement, government or forensic field applications.

New 61-Point High Density Reticular AF

The EOS-1D X includes a brand new 61-Point High Density Reticular AF, the most sophisticated DSLR AF system Canon has ever released. The 21 focusing points in the central area are standard precision cross-type and effective with maximum apertures as small as f/5.6, depending on the lens in use. The center five points are also high-precision diagonal cross-type points for maximum apertures as small as f/2.8. All 61 points are sensitive to horizontal contrast with maximum apertures as small as f/5.6 and 20 of the outer focusing points function as cross-type points with maximum apertures as small as f/4.0. Other innovations of the new 61-point High Density Reticular AF include expanded AF coverage area, superior focusing precision and low light sensitivity, and greater low-contrast subject detection capability compared to earlier EOS AF systems. (See image below for AF point configuration)

All AF functions now have their own menu tab for quick and easy access (formerly AF custom functions in previous EOS models). A new AF Configuration Tool allows for customized setting of tracking sensitivity, the acceleration and deceleration of tracking subjects, and AF point auto switching, all of which are easily accessed and adjusted via the new AF menu tab. A built-in Feature Guide advises photographers on which settings to use according to subject matter.

Similar to the AF point selection options offered in the EOS 7D Digital SLR camera, the EOS-1D X offers six AF point selection modes: Spot, Single Point, Single Point with surrounding four points, Single Point with surrounding eight points, Zone selection and Automatic AF point selection. (See image below AF point selection options.)

EOS iTR AF: Intelligent Tracking and Recognition Enhances AF Performance

The Canon EOS-1D X features incredible new EOS iTR (Intelligent Tracking and Recognition) AF options ideal for wedding and event photography as well as sports and photojournalism. The default AF mode for the EOS-1D X uses phase detection AF information, while a new second option uses Face Detection technology to track recognized faces in addition to color information, ideal when shooting events such as tennis or dancing where facial recognition of the original subject will help keep that person in focus throughout the scene.

Exposure Control

For the first time in a Canon DSLR camera, a DIGIC processor is used exclusively with the metering sensor for fast, accurate exposure control. The Canon DIGIC 4 processor takes advantage of the EOS-1D X’s 100,000-pixel RGB Metering Sensor and utilizes 252 zones for general metering or 35 zones for low-light metering to help ensure accurate evaluative ambient or flash exposure. The new subject recognition capabilities enhance nearly all of the camera’s automatic functions, helping to adjust exposure, autofocus, Auto Lighting Optimizer and Automatic Picture Style to the scene being captured for enhanced image quality.

Multiple Exposure Modes

The EOS-1D X is the first EOS Digital SLR to feature Multiple Exposure capability. The camera can combine up to nine individual images into a single composite image, with no need for post-processing in a computer. Four different compositing methods are provided for maximum creative control, including Additive, Average, Bright and Dark. Compositing results can be viewed in real time on the camera’s LCD monitor, and there is a one-step Undo command that allows photographers to delete an image and try again if desired. The EOS-1D X’s Multiple Exposure mode even allows photographers to specify a previously captured RAW image as the starting point for a new Multiple Exposure composite image.

Super High Speed Mode

The Canon EOS-1D X camera breaks new ground in the world of digital SLRs, offering a Super High Speed Mode which increases shooting speeds up to 14 fps at full 18-megapixel resolution in JPEG mode[i]. The new camera is also capable of shooting RAW, JPEG, or RAW+JPEG at speeds up to 12 fps in One Shot AF or AI Servo AF for enhanced performance in sports photography and other applications requiring high-speed digital capture. This new level of performance is made possible by the combination of the EOS-1D X’s 16-channel readout CMOS sensor, Dual DIGIC 5+ image processors, and a completely new reflex mirror mechanism that has been engineered by Canon to combine high-performance with exceptional precision and reliability.

Enhanced EOS HD Video – New Compressions, Longer Recording

Centered around an all-new full-frame CMOS sensor with larger pixels than those found on the EOS 5D Mark II image sensor, the EOS-1D X utilizes new HD video formats to simplify and speed up post-production work. The two new compression formats offered on the EOS-1D X include intraframe (ALL-i ) compression for an editing-friendly format and interframe (IPB) compression for superior data compression, giving professionals the options they need for their ideal workflow. Answering the requests of cinematographers and filmmakers, the EOS-1D X includes two methods of SMPTE-compliant timecode embedding, Rec Run and Free Run, allowing multiple cameras or separate sound recording to be synced together in post production.

Canon’s all new full-frame CMOS sensor ensures that video footage captured on the EOS-1D X will exhibit less moiré than any previous Canon model, resulting in a significant improvement in HD video quality. A desired feature for many documentary filmmakers using Canon DSLRs was to enable recording beyond the four gigabyte (GB) file capacity and the EOS-1D X is the answer. The new camera features automatic splitting of movie files when a single file exceeds 4GB. The new file splitting function allows for continuous video recording up to 29 minutes and 59 seconds across multiple 4GB files; no frames are dropped and the multiple files can be seamlessly connected in post production, providing filmmakers the recording time they want in the same convenient DSLR form factor. The camera records Full HD at 1920 x 1080 in selectable frame rates of 24p (23.976), 25p, or 30p (29.97); and 720p HD or SD video recording at either 50p or 60p (59.94). SD video can be recorded in either NTSC or PAL standards.

The Canon EOS-1D X also includes manual audio level control, adjustable both before and during movie recording, an automatic setting, or it can be turned off entirely. A wind filter is also included. Sound can be recorded either through the internal monaural microphone or via an optional external microphone through the stereo mic input.

Enhanced Ergonomics & Optimized Design

Photographers familiar with Canon’s EOS 1D-series of cameras will notice the control configuration of the EOS-1D X takes a different approach to button placement. The re-designed exterior and ergonomic button configuration feels comfortable in your right hand, allowing seamless navigation through menu options.

The Live View Button has been conveniently placed near the user’s thumb for one-touch switching between Live View and Viewfinder shooting. The Quick Control Button and menu navigation controls will allow users to change camera settings using only their right hand, for fast, simple one-handed control using their thumb on the scroll wheel. The new multi-controller is positioned by the right hand thumb when the camera is held for vertical shooting and enables the same level of control to camera operators when shooting vertically as they have when shooting horizontally. On the front of the camera are four user assignable function buttons, two for vertical shooting and two for horizontal shooting, allowing customizable button control when shooting in either position. The camera also features a level of weather resistance equivalent to earlier professional models such as the EOS-1D Mark IV.

Canon has answered the request of many professional EOS photographers and incorporated Dual Card Slots into the new EOS-1D X DSLR camera. The dual CF card slots will allow photographers to carry only one memory card format and still achieve instant image back-ups and enhanced storage capacity.

This camera also features a new shutter design with even greater durability and precision. Rated to 400,000 cycles, the new carbon fiber shutter blades are more lightweight and durable, allowing the EOS-1D X to achieve over 100,000 cycles more than the shutter of the EOS-1D Mark IV. A new shutter motion and new motor help further reduce vibration in the camera. The EOS-1D X also features an electronic first curtain, new to the EOS-1D series DSLRs, for minimal in-camera vibration during image capture.


For professional photographers who prefer a wired workflow and transfer system, Canon has included a built-in LAN connection in the EOS-1D X DSLR. The built-in LAN connection features a gigabit Ethernet Jack capable of 1000BASE-T transmission speeds, offering photographers a stable wired connection for ultra-fast data transmission. If the network were to go down, the camera will attempt to resend images until the files are sent. The EOS-1D X also features a direct image transfer function whereby images can be selected for transfer, and only sent once a LAN or USB connection is established.


Designed exclusively for the EOS-1D X, the new Canon WFT-E6A Wireless File Transmitter* features wireless LAN support for 802.11n network transfer rates providing users with increased communication speed when compared to previous models. With this new dust and weather resistant model, professionals can synchronize clocks on multiple cameras and use the unit to support linked shooting when utilizing multiple cameras. In addition, Bluetooth-compatible equipment can be easily linked to the device as well.

The EOS-1D X also offers an optional Canon GP-E1 GPS Receiver*, which can be easily integrated into the camera’s body. Powered by the camera, this GPS receiver provides the same weatherproof resistance as the EOS-1D X, even at the connector. With an electronic compass on-board, the GP-E1 will log movement – latitude, longitude, elevation, and the Universal Time Code – and allow viewing of camera movement on a PC after shooting. The receiver will also record camera direction when shooting, even when shooting vertically.

Pricing and Availability

The Canon EOS-1D X Digital SLR camera is scheduled for March 2012 availability and will be sold in a body-only configuration at an estimated retail price of $6,800.00. The compact, lightweight WFT-E6A Wireless File Transmitter is scheduled to be available in March 2012 and have an estimated retail price of $600. Availability for the GP-E1 GPS receiver is expected in April 2012 with an estimated retail price of $300.

**Super High Speed Continuous shooting at 14 fps requires mirror lock and JPEG mode at ISO speeds less than 32000.

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Finally Canon got it right !

What were you looking for? Lower mp?

Sony makes nikons insides. Just go look at what Sony is already showing to get an idea. The lower megapixels is to handle the noise. That's why Nikon didn't go so high with mega pixels on the d3's. Patrick asked where the 60ps is. Its with Sony. We have become a technology culture where very small updates create a major buzz but in all practicality wont change how we work very much. The new dx is nothing jaw dropping, its just a better performer than the last, its not a game changer.

When hasselblad went from a film camera to a digital camera, THAT, was buzz worth. When Canon came out with the 5dmk2, THAT was buzz worth.  These new Nikons, and Canons are just better versions of what we already use. 

I know you guys need to cover the press and I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about the consumer hype about these new cameras.

Brandon Luckain's picture

Mother of God.

Still no 720 at 30 fps. But who gives a hoot. I'd sell all my gear for this. And STILL not have enough.

Patrick Hall's picture

It shoots 30fps at 1080. Its so easy to just resize it in post. Real question is where is 1080 at 60fps?

Brandon Luckain's picture

Very much true. This is coming from someone who has a rig that can barely handle HD video :
5D3 may have it, who knows.

:( I agree! I've been waiting fervently for Canon to introduce 1080p 60fps in a DSLR and this makes me sad

Zack Williamson's picture

From what I've read, that's coming with whatever is being announced on November 3rd...probably around the $10k-$15k price point.

Its called Sony. They are already doing it and doing it better than anyone. Oh and they make nikons insides.

Patrick Hall's picture

yeah Nikon better step it up.  You see the 1080 60fps video on Lee's wedding video shot with the Panasonic AF100?  That chip is 3/4rds too!

I don't know why you guys aren't shooting Sony. A77. nuff said

a77 has slow response. -_-

According to who? If you are talking about the EVF, that was patched in a firmware update. And that cameras burst mode is around 12fps.

Interesting update, I think it's about time they get rid of the awkward 1.3x crop factor of the APS-H and follow Nikon with the quick FF body. AWESOME 12fps continuous with AF, kinda confused they didn't go at least to 21 mp like the 5DII though to be honest, at a "similar" price point of the D3x 18mp is significantly less.... for me 18 is more than enough, for commercial studio photographers trying to shoot billboards? hmmm. looks like it'll be a beast regardless though!

Jens Marklund's picture

You obviously know little about pixels and printing. There is very little, if not unnoticeable, difference between the resolution 18MP and 21MP. The lenses you use, will most likely not even be sharp enough to show the difference. Also, if you've ever seen a billboard - you'll know that they aren't printed at 300ppi. They are VERY low resolution, and looks great only at a distance. I could most likely use my old 6MP D50 to shoot a billboard shot.

The people that need the pixels are usually only fashion photographers, and only because they do such heavy post on their models.

As much as I disagree with most of Ken Rockwell writes, this is article is actually informative.

This is a great response Jens!

I was thinking the same thing. When I worked as an art director at RawleMurdy in Charleston, I used the agency camera (then, a Rebel XT with 8mp) to take photos that were used for billboards. I also used my EOS 5D to shoot billboards for Piggly Wiggly and most recently photographed a pilot and his plane at the Yorktown for their new billboard on I-26. Granted, they processed the hell out of those images so they're more like illustrations than photographs, but they held up well. If you looked at a billboard from 3' away, you'd see a bunch of dots. Essentially, you'd see a deconstructed color halftone. Vector graphics would be smooth, still as they really have no loss in resolution (the printer would run out of resolution first). The farther away you get, the more clean it gets. Print an 8x10 on your printer at 72 dpi and tack it on the wall. Walk about 10' away from it and when you turn around and look at it, I guarantee you won't see a single dot or blemish, but rather a smooth image.People are far too worried about megapixels and far less worried about the sharpness of the image and the overall resolving power of lenses (which are outperformed easily by the high megapixel count in cameras). This camera appeals to sports photographers, I guess. I have a 5DII and a 5D Classic and they're fine. I'm kind of hoping Canon will release a full-frame without video and drop the price to the 60D/7D range. I'd sell my 5DII in a minute for that. I'll never use the video and I will never need 12 or 18 frames per second. It appears Canon's pro-side is becoming a sports photographers' company with the release of the ID3, IDS3, ID4 and now the IDX. That's four sports-centric cameras in what, 4 years? And they released the 5D and then the 5DII 6 years later (but that was still 3 years ago). Either they're building a freakin' rocket ship of a camera or they've got nothing. On the consumer side, we've seen yearly updates to the Rebel and XXD line as well. They can sell those to soccer moms and amateurs all day long so I understand them wanting to produce cameras that sell easily and to people in a declining economy, but I think they're forgetting a large portion of their market... Still an amazing camera. Thanks for sharing guys!

you bring up a few good points Matthew... thanks dude

I have just printed 4 24x36 that I put on my wall with my D300 at 12 MP.... And it's good even at 1 feet away. It always depends how you expose the picture as well and post production is important too. I'm perfectly happy with my 12 MP camera EXCEPT when I miss a shot and need to crop a lot... but you know what? It's always my fault... :)

DAMN GINA!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'll wait to see what a 5d3 has.. Although nearly all my work is in a studio at low-100 ISO i think my 5D2 still has a very healthy shelf life..  But for the love of god don't drop the MP on that model.

So basically they made a Canon version of a D3 with a few bumps in resolution and video capabilities? And even when they grabbed ideas from Nikon (such as duel slots) they didn't offer the same options. Why have two slots if I can't control them. 

Even Nikon, who people complain is too expensive, managed to keep the D3s at 4500 or so. That 2000 (or prob about 1500 actual) difference is easily a lens. That makes a huge difference to some people. 

Super camera.... but why why why do they still not include the wifi as a standard feature. The only reason I can think of is commercial, sell more stuff. But on the other hand, if you can afford this camera you can also afford the extra wifi option.

this is so beautiful... but i think a lot of non-sports photographers are waiting on the 5D3 and see what that offers. When the 1Ds3 was released, it was beautiful, but the 5D2 was half the price AND it performed almost as well. Pretty curious as to how Canon will handle the 5D3 without losing the market for 1DX 

Nonetheless, someone give me $7000 NOW. Cuz I want this

I agree Sean.  I'm shooting a 7D and waiting patiently for a 5DMkIII but alas, the 1DX was announced instead.  I could certainly do some amazing things with that camera, but at $7k, it's a little out of my budget right now.  I agree with Chris that it's a pretty insane price, even for all we get with the camera.  I think that price-point is steep for any photographer.  We'll see.  I'm sure the D800 is going to ROCK and get a lot more sales than the 1DX, since it's geared for a different type of professional.

@ Chris Parent, Canon has offered dual slots on the 1D series since mk ii. I'm not sure what you mean by you can't control them, jpeg to one and RAW to the other.  I think this is an amazing merge between the 1D and 1Ds.  And they split the difference in price points which I think is fair.  At 18 mp I feel its perfect not sure why everyone wants giant files that don't offer much advantage.  And at a standard iso of 51,800!  And, finally full frame on a fast 1D.  Exquisite.

correction.  the 1D series has had 1 CF slot and 1 SD slot.  Still served the same purpose though.

Patrick Hall's picture

I'm curious to see how the ISO holds up.  I remember before the D3, Canon was actually the holders of the best ISO performance.  Since then the tides have changed and the D3/s have owned that titled causing so many of the sports guys to change to Nikon.  I remember thinking no sports shooters used Nikon at all but now it's the opposite.  Funny thing is Canon took on the lead roll for video which Nikon has still yet to catch up on.  

I'm talking about not being able to control what the slots do in function. Yes one slot can shoot Raw and one JPEG, but a lot of photographers have become used to the Nikon function on being able to shoot backup copies or allow for overflow and not just different file types. During huge events, card runners take one card and others are kept for safe keeping, the Canon doesn't allow this. 

Yes, splitting the price seems to make sense, but in today's marketplace large companies are already cutting every cost possible. The large markets for these cameras were AP, Getty, Newspapers, etc. Those companies aren't going to want to shell out 6,800 for one camera with the way the industry is going today. Two 1Dx or 3 or 4 Mark IVs. Heck you can get 5 or 6 5d Mark IIs for the price of two 1dXs. AP and Getty already have staff using the 5D's for a lot of things to cut costs and a lot of their staff is happy to use them. Newspapers have been cutting cost right and left, and if they are buying, they aren't buying the high end pro bodies anymore. They are picking up 7ds or D700s. Pricing today is a big deal. The gains over the Mark IV might be somewhat steady, but the Mark IV can produce what the companies are satisfied with. Heck, a D5100 produces an image that could compete with a D2x from a few years ago. Image quality is only that important to a few people. 

To those clients, it will be worth it, but the camera won't have nearly as large a market share as possible with that price point. 

Anyone know what the sync speed is?

that's what i was thinking too