Canon has just announced two new FHD, full frame camera models, the Canon ML-100 and ML-105 with ultra high light sensitivity, aimed mostly at industrial use. Both models come with either Canon EF or M58 lens mounts. The 19-micron pixels allow the light sensitivity to go as high as 75dB (equivalent of 4,560,000 ISO). Depending on the models, the cameras can output RAW or processed video signal.
Canon first introduced a VERY light-sensitive full frame FHD camera already five years ago, the Canon ME20F-SH, and this camera was already able to reach 75dB (approximately 4,560,000 ISO) in light sensitivity. (More information on that camera can be found here: our article and video from the IBC 2015).
Canon ML-100 and ML-105 Cameras
Both new models incorporate a full-frame CMOS sensor with large 19um (19 microns) pixels. Although the sensor size and resolution stayed the same, Canon states this is a new sensor, not the one used in the ME20F-SH. The light sensitivity reaches a maximum of 75dB, which equals approximately 4,560,000 ISO. According to Canon, the camera will be able to capture color video with a minimum subject illumination of less than 0.0005 lux.
Both, the ML-100 and ML-105 will come in two different versions with different lens mounts – either Canon EF or M58 mount. The cameras offer a compact, cube-shaped body and modular design that allows implementation and integration into industrial solutions. Both models will not be able to record internally and the difference between them lies in the recording options and connectivity.
The Canon ML-100 camera features a CoaXpress terminal, which allows for the transmission of video, camera-control data and power on a single coaxial cable. The one-cable-does-it-all design could be suitable for use in industrial systems. The CoaXpress terminal produces 12-bit RAW data output at up to 73 fps (full sensor readout) or up to 164fps at 720p resolution in crop mode, which Canon calls “Region of Interest”. The ML-100 features approximately 2.74 million pixels of maximum video output.
The Canon ML-105 camera features a standard 3G/HD-SDI video terminal and has the Canon DIGIC DV4 image processor built-in. Thanks to the processor, the camera can output processed YCC 4:2:2 10-bit image in Full HD 60fps. It is worth noting that according to Canon, the ML-105 has not been yet authorized as required by the rules of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
I am curious to see if the new sensor handles noise better than the older full-frame 19 microns sensor. Outside of industrial use, I can see the extreme lowlight performance being useful, for instance, in wildlife cinematography. What do you think?
Price and Availability
According to Canon, the M58 mount version of the Canon ML-100 multi-purpose camera is scheduled to be available at the end of December 2020, and the other three models are scheduled to be available in April 2021.
There is no word about pricing yet. As a reference, the five years old Canon ME20F-SH retails for $19,999. We will update the article as soon as we get more information about pricing.
What do you think about the new Canon ML-100 and ML-105 cameras? Can you see the cameras being used outside of the industrial sector, as well? Let us know in the comment section underneath the article.