Canon announce new EOS 5D mkIII firmware with clean uncompressed HDMI output – but it won't be available until April 2013

By site editor Dan Chung:

In a surprise move Canon have today announced that the EOS 5D mkIII will gain a clean HDMI output to rival its main competitor – the Nikon D800. The output will be 4:2:2 8bit and should work with many popular external HDMI recorders. The strange thing about this announcement is that the firmware will not be available until April 2013. Quite why it will take so long and has been announced so far ahead is a mystery to me. Another thing to note is that this a clean HDMI out has not been announced for the flagship EOS-1D X, meaning that once again (like the previous 1D mkIV and 5DmkII) the higher model will lack video features that the lower model has.

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., October 23, 2012 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, today announced a new firmware update for the EOS 5D Mark III Digital SLR camera that significantly improves the camera’s performance and usability. In response to requests from professionals working in the fields of cinema and television production, the firmware update enables the use of uncompressed HDMI Output support, making possible more efficient video editing and monitoring procedures. Additionally, the upgrade supports the advanced needs of photographers through improved AF performance when capturing still images.

Uncompressed HDMI Output Support
When shooting video, HDMI Output makes possible the recording of high-definition uncompressed video data (YCbCr 4:2:2, 8 bit) from the EOS 5D Mark III to an external recorder via the camera’s HDMI terminal. This, in turn, facilitates the editing of video data with minimal image degradation for greater on-site workflow efficiency during motion picture and video productions. Additionally, video being captured can be displayed on an external monitor, enabling real-time, on-site monitoring of high-definition video during shooting.

Improved AF Functionality
Even when the EOS 5D Mark III is equipped with an extender and lens making possible a maximum aperture of f/8, the firmware update supports AF employing the camera’s central cross-type points (currently compatible with maximum apertures up to f/5.6). Accordingly, the update will allow users to take advantage of AF when shooting distant subjects, benefitting sports and nature photographers, particularly when using telephoto lenses.

The new firmware update will be available, at no charge, in April 2013 from the Canon U.S.A. website and can be downloaded by end users or through Canon Factory Service Centers.

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