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Canon EOS R100: Worth a second look


We recently opened our new TechTrends Media podcast studio and when Canon reached out about providing the Canon EOS R100, we said, why not? Canon officially launched this entry-level mirrorless camera in May last year.

Canon positioned the R100 as its most compact, lightweight, and affordable camera within the EOS R system. The camera filled the gap in the entry-level segment of the market and offered a simplified design similar to what we have seen in Canon’s previous EOS Digital Rebel bodies.   

If you’re a beginner, the R100 is a good option to consider thanks to the auto mode which allows you to shoot some great images in auto. Manual mode however lets you discover its full strengths allowing you to even get more creative.

Important to mention that the Canon R100 is feature-rich and comes in at an even lower price but should you buy it?

CANON EOS R100 Build and controls

The R100 is a very compact camera with a very lightweight body that comes in around 3.4 by 4.6 by 2.7 inches (HWD) and weighs 356g without a lens attached.  It is smaller and lighter than a traditional DSLR, perfect for those who want to shoot on the move. Its comfortable grip, electronic viewfinder, intuitive controls, and guided user interface give users the tools to be the family’s very own photographer. 

The camera is at its most portable when paired with the Canon RF-S 18-45mm f/4.5-6.3 IS STM kit lens with which it is bundled. 

The controls are also very simple and sensibly laid out and if you have used a Canon SLR or mirrorless body then you should be familiar with them. Playing around with them is easy. The location of these controls should make it easier for beginners to learn and use. For example, the power switch is anchored to the mode dial on the right-hand side of the camera making it easy to access and quickly power up the camera with just one hand. 

Canon EOS R100 review
Canon EOS R100 top controls

The top plate controls are where you also have the shutter and video buttons, exposure mode dial, and a single electronic dial for changing settings.

The mode dial also changes between auto, Aperture, Manual, Program, Shutter, and a couple of different other capture modes you can play around with.

The Info, Menu and Play buttons are right below, alongside a four-way control pad to help you set the focus point and navigate through the menus. This pad also features other camera functions like Delete, Flash, ISO, and Self-Timer/Drive.  The Q/Set button is located at the centre.

Using some of these camera settings shouldn’t be a struggle because the menus offer descriptions of the different modes as well as on-screen examples. For example, using features like Creative Assist enables you to adjust things like contrast, brightness, color balance and background blur without the need to struggle with the settings. 

On top of the camera body you have a pop-up flash to help you to keep taking shots when night falls or when shooting indoors with poor lighting. There is also a hot shoe on top of the flash, enabling you to mount accessories like vlogging microphones to get some good audio.

Canon EOS R100 sensor

The EOS R100 features a 24.1-megapixel APS-C image sensor which does a pretty decent job. This sensor is also several times larger than that found in some high-end smartphones and gives your shots plenty of details and colour. I was also surprised by how good it was in low-light conditions giving shots with a very authentic bokeh effect.    

Should you take R100 to the wild the 1.6x crop factor nicely magnifies the focal length of your lenses for greater reach. What this means is that even far-away subjects the camera will get you sorted. 

With the intelligent autofocus of the EOS R range, the EOS R100 has Dual Pixel CMOS AF with fast and accurate subject detection, tracking people’s eyes when using the viewfinder or the LCD screen, keeping up with the action and focusing on what really matters. By offering up to 6.5 fps continuous shooting with One Shot AF and 3.5 fps with Continuous AF[i], the EOS R100 helps capture all the special moments. 

We used the R100 mainly for our in-house podcast production and It packed plenty of data and detail into our shots while enabling us to achieve shallow depth of field – and if you’re into shooting faraway subjects like wildlife or sports, the sensor’s 1.6x crop factor will magnify the focal length of your lenses for even greater reach. 

The EOS R100 offers 4K 25p video and is also capable of Full HD video recording at 60 fps and 120 fps at 720p resolution, ideal for smooth slow-motion videos.  It can do so in vertical orientation as well as horizontally, for quick and easy sharing and uploading on social media, especially in this era where creating reels has become a really big thing. Dual Pixel CMOS AF also enables face detection and eye tracking when recording in Full HD, it’s not available in 4K though. 

Connectivity

The R100’s Wi-Fi and always-on Bluetooth connectivity enable you to seamlessly transfer images and videos to your smartphone using the Canon Camera Connect app for instant sharing. The app also enables users to operate the camera remotely, while Bluetooth connection allows simple control with the BR-E1 remote control or a smartphone, which is perfect for group photos and videos.

Our thoughts

The Canon EOS R100 is an interesting camera in this category and ticks some really good boxes. The controls and user-guided interface make it the perfect camera for beginners or just anyone who doesn’t want to learn the technical side of the camera or photography. 

With a 24.1-megapixel, APS-C sensor and Dual Pixel CMOS AF packed into its compact and lightweight body, the EOS R100 offers stunning yet effortless image quality, perfect for shooting on the go.

For more hands-on video content creation, features like 4K video shooting and slow-motion movies with 120p high frame rate recording are available.  And With Eye Detection AF and Movie Digital IS function in movie mode, you can keep people in focus and ensure stable footage even if you are shooting while walking. 

The EOS R100 is actually the simplest and cheapest mirrorless camera you can find around. In Kenya, it’s available for (TBA)

Below is a quick look at the specs

Lens mount Canon RF-S
Sensor 24.1MP APS-C CMOS
Image Processor Digic 8
AF Points Dual Pixel CMOS AF (88% coverage)
ISO range 100 to 12,800 (exp to 25,600)
Stabilization Electronic (Movie Digital IS)
Video 4K up to 25p (1.55x crop), 1080p up to 60p (uncropped), 720p up to 120p, Vertical video
Viewfinder 2.36m dots, up to 60fps refresh rate, 0.95x magnification
Memory card 1x SD card
Screen Fixed 3-inch (non-touch)screen, 1.04m dots
Max burst 6.5fps (3.5fps with AF)
Connectivity Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Micro HDMI, microphone jack
Dimensions 116.3 x 88.1 x 58.7mm
Weight 356g with battery and memory card

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