Canon’s flagship DSLR line will end with the EOS-1D X Mark III, eventually

When Canon revealed the EOS-1D X Mark III in January 2020, we proclaimed that the DSLR “still isn’t dead,” but that camera will mark the end of the line for a flagship model that some pro photographers still swear by to capture everything from sporting events to wild animals.

CanonRumors points out an interview Canon’s chairman and CEO Fujio Mitarai gave this week to the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun (via Y.M. Cinema Magazine). The piece highlight how high-end mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras have taken market share digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) cameras previously dominated.

In it, the CEO is quoted (in Japanese, which we’ve translated to English) saying “Market needs are rapidly moving toward mirrorless cameras. So accordingly, we’re increasingly moving people in that direction.” The article states that the Mark III is “in fact” the last model in Canon’s flagship EOS-1 series and that in a few years Canon will stop developing and producing its flagship DSLR cameras in favor of mirrorless cameras.

However, despite what some headlines say, it doesn’t mean this is the end of Canon DSLRs (yet). While the article makes it plain that mirrorless cameras like Canon’s own EOS R3 represent the future of the segment, it also says that because of strong overseas demand, the company plans to continue making intro/mid-range DSLR cameras for the time being.

As for the Mark III itself, while a new model is not around the corner, its estimated lifespan as an active product is still measured in years. In a statement given to The The Hamden Journal, a Canon US spokesperson confirmed, “The broad details of Mr. Mitarai’s interview as described in the article are true. However, while estimated as “within a few years,” exact dates are not confirmed for the conclusion of development/termination of production for a flagship DSLR camera.”