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March 03, 2012

Speculation: Why was the 5D Mark III not named 5D X?

Canon went with an "X marks the spot" naming scheme, starting with the 1D X in October 2011 and then the G1x (reviews, stock check) this year. If the prestigious "X" was good enough for a 1.5" sensor camera, surely it must have been good for a 35mmFF DSLR. Yet the brand new 5D camera was named 5D Mark III, instead of the trendy X.

So, is Canon "saving" the X for a rumored "5D X" with a different feature set? Or have they reserved the "X" name for transitional cameras only? The 1D X was the transition from APS-H to 35mmFF sensors for the 1D series and the G1x was the transition from 1/1.x" to 1.5" sensors for G-series cameras. On the other hand, the 5D Mark III is a sequential update from the 5D Mark II, so no transition here.

Yet the 5DMk3 price of $3500 seems to throw half a bucket of icy cold water on the potential of a near-term 5D X. How or where would a mythical 5D X fit in the EOS stills line-up, with the 1D X just around the price corner? Some of the rumors talked of a 5D split with a video-priority 5D X, and there is certainly price-room on the video front with the Cinema C300 priced at $16,000. Either way, only time (and leaks) will tell. Let's not forget this is a Photokina year, so perhaps Canon is "saving it" for Koln/Cologne [see trade show calendar]


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