Canon Matches Camera and Lens Better

I've been a harsh critic of Canon's mismatched RF products: low-end bodies and high-end lenses. Today, that problem began its inevitable demise.

bythom canon rplens

RP Facebook post: I'm finally in a relationship!

Canon introduced the 24-240mm f/4-6.3 RF lens. This new consumer superzoom will be available in September for US$900 on its own, or in a kit with the RP body for US$2200 (no savings in the bundle!). 

You can read the specs on the lens in the link, above. But I was struck by two statements in the Canon press release:

"...an excellent option as an all-around travel lens that provides attractive features for a wide variety of image capture." Right. It's a consumer lens for a consumer body, because consumers have long shown their allegiance to slow-aperture superzooms because of their convenience. Ironically, consumers buy ILC products and then pretty much ignore the IL. The US$900 price is a bit steep, though. Canon themselves has been selling an RP+EF lens kit for US$1700 (the 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6). That seems more the right price for an entry level option. Thus, the new lens offers a higher-end option for consumers, so Canon's still not quite where they need to be.

But here's the quote that should raise eyebrows: "the recently announced EOS RP full-frame mirrorless camera [and] the compact and lightweight portability of the RF 24-240mm rivals that of a Canon APS-C camera system with a comparable EF-S lens." Way to market against yourself, Canon. The example they give is not exactly equivalent (the EF-S lens would be 30-320mm equivalent), and US$1350 in price. The fact that Canon would want a user to consider a US$850 more expensive product, though, is illustrative of the problem they have. 

Canon pretty much dominates the low-cost consumer camera market these days. But almost all variations of that are contracting in market size. Certainly the DSLR (EF-S) side is. No doubt that Canon would like to transfer as many of those folk who are left upwards a notch. 

Okay, but the press release fails to say why someone would want the full frame RP over the crop sensor T7i (their example camera). 

Doh! This is sloppy and poor marketing, and not something I expect from Canon. There's a simple point to make here: the full frame equivalent should do better in low light, which is the reason why you'd want it and might pay more for it. 

The full frame camera also has 100% viewfinder coverage. It has 4K video and a few more pixels. So it seems like there were several things Canon could have marketed as making the RP case over a T7i, but failed at. (I checked Canon's Web site: "Excellent Low-light Performance" is bullet #5, so it's not as if Canon marketing didn't know why someone would choose the RP over the T7i, they just failed to say it. Again, marketing fail.)

You want to know who will gain market share in cameras in the future? The company that fixes their marketing first. As it sits right now, all of them have issues with their marketing messages.

At least Canon will soon have a lens that better matches the RP camera's market. Hopefully, they'll figure out how to market it correctly.

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