Sony's Competition: The Canon EOS M3

Despite Canon and Nikon’s dominance in the camera space, many professional photographers have jumped ship for the Sony platform and its mirrorless technology. That’s in part due to the lackluster enthusiasm the big two manufacturers have shown for mirrorless. Nikon’s Nikon 1 platform is aimed at the entry-level consumer and Canon’s only mirrorless body is the M system.

Canon’s most recent EOS M3 is the company’s latest foray into the mirrorless space and while it’s no competition for the a7, it’s more on par with the Sony A6000. To me though it’s interesting to look at the Canon EOS M3 as a toe that Canon is dipping in the mirrorless water. The company uses products like the EOS M3to judge consumer reaction, test components and see how it compares to products from Sony, Olympus, Panasonic and others.

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Check out the SonyMirrorlessPro.com guide to Must Have Sony Accessories

CameraLabs took the for an extensive test ride and their multi-thousand word review is the last word on the EOS M3.

Editor’s Note: CameraLabs is one of the best sites for photography on the internet. The site is run by Gordon Laing, and like us, he is completely independent. His reviews are deep, well written and informative. We highly recommend you make CameraLabs part of your daily reading.

In short, Canon have improved many things with the M3, including handling and operation, though some things are still lacking. There are just three native lenses and the system is lacking an EVF, for example. But the [easyazon_link identifier="B00UZG0CDY" locale="US" tag="texturadesign-20" popups="y"]EOS M3 is a better system than its predecessor.

In use, the EOS M3 feels a World apart from its predecessors. I had no complaints with the image quality of the original M, but the handling, particularly the AF, left me frustrated. The controls too were more point-and-shoot than the step-up from those models it was surely aiming to be. With the M3, Canon has accelerated the focus and provided the degree of control and customization a camera like this really needs, not to mention a decent grip to hold onto. While I feel a built-in electronic viewfinder would have made the experience even better, there is at least an option to mount one and in the meantime the fully-articulated screen provides compositional flexibility absent from the original, including folding back to face the subject.

At some point, Canon will be entering the professional mirrorless camera space. The Canon EOS M3 is the first step into a much larger world. If you’d like to see what their future products would be like, the EOS M3 will give you a glimpse.

Read the excellent CameraLabs article here, to see what the future of Canon mirrorless will look like.

Comparisons to the Sony a6000 are here on CameraLabs.

Sample images are here on CameraLabs.

My daily shooter is Sony a9 with a vertical grip and various Sigma lenses attached like the 14mm 1.4 Art. Find more gear recommendations in our shop.