Dial M for mirrorless: Canon has finally unveiled the Canon EOS M, its first mirrorless system camera. The EOS M takes on the Micro Four Thirds range from Olympus and Panasonic, the NEX range from Sony, and Nikon's 1 J1 and V1 -- and even uses your current lenses too.
Inside the 1.2-inch thick magnesium frame is an 18-megapixel APS-C sensor backed up by Canon's latest DIGIC 5 processor. The specs are similar to the Canon EOS 650D dSLR, but without the moving mirror that works the viewfinder it's a smaller and lighter proposition.
The first camera in the EOS M line-up shoots 4.3 frames per second (fps), and has an ISO sensitivity up to ISO 12,800, digitally expandable to ISO 25,600. The screen is a 3-inch touchscreen, cutting down on the buttons and dials on the frame.
Video is high definition 1080p at 24, 25, or 30 fps. With Movie Servo Autofocus you get continuous focusing while filming, and there's a stereo mic and external mic input.
Canon may be late to the mirrorless game, but this camera includes one important option that most others don't: add a Mount Adapter EF-EOS M accessory to your EOS M, and you can use any classic Canon lens. Where other camera systems lacked lenses when first introduced, the EOS M can potentially be plugged straight into the existing line-up of Canon lenses, making it a very tempting back-up or pocket camera if you already have a bag full of Canon glass.
Canon's new mirrorless system costs £770 for the camera body with an EF-M 18-55mm lens, or £880 with a 22mm f/2 pancake lens and lens adapter. With both lenses the camera will set you back £950. The lens adapter on its own costs £130.
The Canon EOS M goes on sale in October. What do you think of Canon's entry to the mirrorless race? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.