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First look at the new Canon R6 Mark II

The R6 was a popular camera and marked the entry point into the latest range of Canon Full Frame Mirrorless and The new R6 Mark II builds on that with improvements in resolution, Auto Focus Capabilities and Video Functions.

Canon R6 Mk II in front of foliage indoors

The boost in resolution comes from a new 24.2MP sensor that provides excellent image quality with ISO performance that easily matches the original R6. The Mark II now comes with the same AF system that can be found in the R3 with some extra tracking modes for horses and trains. We now know what to expect from this AF system and users will not be disappointed.

Photographer using the new Canon R6 Mk II

The new camera retains the 12 Frames per second burst, but has seen a boost up to 40 frames per second on the electronic shutter. There is also up to 8 stops of inbuilt image stabilisation. The R6 Mark II has 4K 60p video recording which is over sampled, but also includes 6k 60p pro res raw via the HDMI. The camera also includes the Cinema Menu System when in video mode which offers more functions compared to the original R6. The new camera also includes 180p full HD slow motion which works well to create interesting videos.

Rather than being a huge leap forward the R6 mark II is more of a refinement over its predecessor, nowhere is this more obvious than with the changes to the button layout. There is a new, more responsive joy pad on the back and the on/off switch has been moved to behind the shutter button. This leaves room for a new mode selector switch. This allows you to move between stills and video quickly. This may seem like a small feature, but it completely changes how you the camera and makes things much smoother. On the R6 the video function was on the mode dial, this meant using menu options to choose the mode when shooting video. Now the mode dial is available in both modes. This will be a major boost for hybrid shooters by making the switch between shooting video and stills almost instant. During a pre-launch event we were able to test this out and it really made the difference.

Canon have made the decision to replace the R6 earlier than normal, after just over 2 years. You can kind of see why, the refined features and operational flexibility make the R6 Mk II the better camera. However the new camera is not a huge leap forward, the resolution boost is nice to have, but 24mp is not much different to 20mp and by todays standard could be considered a bit on the low side, with the slightly cheaper Sony A7 IV having 33MP.

Dancer in Red Dress

(Sample image from pre-production model.)

At launch the camera will retail at £2779.99 body only which is quite an investment. For current R6 users who shoot predominantly stills it would be hard to see this as an upgrade over the previous camera. For hybrid or straight up video shooters, though, they will definitely find a use for this camera and with the refined video functions and improved AF it would definitely be worth the upgrade over the R6. That said the R6 Mk II is a great performer and it was fun and intuitive to use, it is heavily customisable and in isolation is a fantastic option for those switching to mirrorless or looking for a hybrid shooting second body.

Camera is available to pre-order via our website.

Canon have also announced the RF 135mm f1.8 and EL-5 Flash gun

Watch our first impressions video


by Darren O'Brien on 02/11/2022


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