Canon News from July

And the first day of August. 

The big news is that the 6D Mark II with the 24-70mm f/4L lens kit will be delayed and not ship on August 4th as expected (the 6D Mark II with the 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 lens is in stock at B&H and a few body-only items have shipped as I write this). No new release date was given. 

Canon updated their Digital Photo Professional (DPP) to version 4.6.30 to support the 6D Mark II and a few older models, plus added support for the new Log photo style and a function to reduce color moire. Likewise, the EOS Movie Utility was updated to version 1.7, the EOS Utility to 3.6.30, and the Picture Style Editor to 1.18.30 to support the new cameras.

Canon announced the imagePROGRAF Pro-6000 printer (do we really need two "pros" in the name?), a new 60" printer using 12-ink cartridges. Probably not going to be on your Christmas list, as you probably don't have a camera that is producing 18000 x 24000 pixel images. That said, a well made 5Ds/r image seems to scale up pretty well to this size, just don't look at it too closely. 

At the other end of the spectrum, Canon announced the new Selphy CP1300 Wi-Fi enabled mobile printer. 

The BIG Canon news in July, though, was their financial disclosure for the previous quarter. A lot of sites on the Internet locked onto the "70% growth in mirrorless sales" bits of the disclosure, but seemed to ignore the larger picture. Year to year, ILC unit volume was down 5% (1.43m units) and compact unit volume (1.07m units) was down 8%. Sales for cameras was down 0.6%, but operating profit was up 12.2%. Clearly, cost cutting and other factors came into play during the quarter. 

For the full year (calendar 2017) Canon projects camera sales to be up 2.7%, though unit volume will decline (-7% for ILC, -8% for compact). 

Overall, Canon's purchase of Toshiba's medical business is helping fuel some growth in the company for both sales and profits, but it comes at the expense of taking on high debt and a big temporary hit to some other core basic financials. Nothing that will challenge Canon financially, but they clearly made some temporary sacrifices to bolster their long-term viability. 

Which brings us to the 70% growth in mirrorless statement. The statement was specifically a year-to-year statement for the quarter, e.g. April-June 2016 compared to April-June 2017. It seems that everyone repeating the statement misses the obvious: the EOS M5 and M6 weren't available during that period in 2016. What was available in 2016 were the M3 and M10. 

My interpretation of the 70% growth statement is simple: the M5 and M6 propelled the Canon mirrorless system forward significantly. Indeed, my own use of the M5 tells me that it is a very versatile small DSLR replacement type of camera, which Canon really didn't have prior. It's clear that the M5 and M6 are resonating with customers, and they sell for higher prices than the M3 and M10 did.

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