Canon’s entry-level full-frame mirrorless does a lot to appeal to enthusiast photographers, says Andy Westlake, but some might find it over-simplified

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Canon EOS RP

Features:
Build/Handling:
Metering:
Autofocus:
AWB Colour:
Dynamic Range:
Image quality:
LCD viewfinder:

Pros:

  • + Streamlined, easy-to-use control layout with plenty of customisation
  • + Well-integrated touchscreen interface
  • + Compatible with EF-mount SLR lenses via supplied adapter
  • + Fully-articulated screen affords extra compositional flexibility

Cons:

  • - No in-body image stabilisation
  • - Over-simplified controls
  • - Viewfinder visibility is poor in bright light

Product:

Canon EOS RP review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£1,399.99 (body with EF-mount adapter)

Canon EOS RP: Autofocus

Like its other recent mirrorless models, Canon has equipped the EOS RP with its unique dual pixel autofocus technology. This splits every single pixel on the sensor into two photodiodes, facing left and right, which allows on-chip phase detection across practically the entire sensor. In practice you can set the focus area almost anywhere you please aside from the extreme left and right edges of the frame, while a new Spot AF mode allows you to focus precisely on a small area of the frame. One minor disadvantage of dual-pixel AF, however, is that it’s only sensitive to vertical detail, so can hunt in certain situations (the solution often being to rotate the camera slightly until the AF locks).

Spot AF mode allows precise focusing almost anywhere in the frame. Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM at 120mm, 1/160sec at f/5.6, ISO 250

This year’s must-have feature, however, is eye-detection AF and Canon has now made it available in continuous (or servo) AF mode. It works reasonably well, but it can’t match Sony’s class-leading implementation in terms of ‘stickiness’ to the subject, or the ability to recognise faces across a wide range of angles. Indeed Canon’s version only really works with subjects that are facing the camera almost directly.

In practical use the EOS RP’s AF system generally works well, giving fast, silent and decisive AF with static subjects and making a very decent effort at continuous AF too. As usual for on-sensor AF, it’s inherently accurate, so there’s no need to worry about making micro-adjustments to correct for front- or back-focus with fast lenses. But perhaps its stand-out superpower is its remarkable low-light ability; the EOS RP is capable of focusing with absolute confidence on even the most dimly-lit of night scenes or interiors.

The EOS RP focuses with complete confidence in extraordinarily low light. RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM, 1.15sec at f/1.8, ISO 4000

Alternatively, you can use manual focus if the AF fails. But as on its APS-C M system, Canon has employed dubious control logic. With native RF lenses set to AF, full-time manual focus is available, and turning the focus ring will give a magnified view for the most accurate results, which is exactly what we’d expect. But switch the lens to MF and mystifyingly the camera doesn’t engage magnification automatically.

If you’re shooting with the LCD there’s an onscreen touch button to do the job, but for viewfinder work you have to press the AF Area button followed by Info, which is an unnecessarily long-winded process. Worse still, it won’t work if you’ve re-assigned the AF button, for example to DOF preview.

  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. Canon EOS RP: Features
  3. 3. Canon EOS RP: Build and handling
  4. 4. Canon EOS RP: Viewfinder and screen
  5. 5. Canon EOS RP: Autofocus
  6. 6. Canon EOS RP: EF lens compatibility
  7. 7. Canon EOS RP: Performance
  8. 8. Canon EOS RP: Image quality
  9. 9. Canon EOS RP: Verdict
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