In March 2022, Canon Inc will be celebrating a significant milestone, the Canon EOS System celebrates 35th Anniversary of the launch of the company’s EOS System. This includes EOS-series interchangeable-lens cameras and a diverse range of system accessories beginning with interchangeable EF lenses.

Canon EOS System 35th Anniversary

Going back in time, here’s some history on Canon’s EOS System. They made its debut in March 1987 with the launch of the EOS 650 single-lens reflex (SLR) camera and EF lenses (1). An acronym of “Electro Optical System” while also carrying the name of the Greek Goddess of the dawn, the EOS series saw first light in 1987 as the world’s fully electronic mount system, representing a new generation of AF SLR cameras.

During the film-camera era, Canon’s EOS SLR cameras gained high acclaim from a wide range of users for their innovative technologies and designs that focused on Canon’s key concepts of high speed and ease of use. During this period, Canon launched the top-of-the-line professional model EOS-1 in 1989. In 1993, Canon introduced the compact lightweight EOS Kiss (EOS Rebel XS and EOS 500 in other regions), they succeeded in expanding its user base.

In the year 2000, Canon introduced the EOS D30, when the popularisation of digital SLR cameras was in full swing. Canon developed such innovative models as the high-speed and high-image-quality professional-oriented EOS-1D (2001), the EOS Kiss Digital (2003, EOS Digital Rebel or EOS 300D in other regions) which appealed to a broad user base, and the EOS 5D Mark II (2008), which featured Full HD video recording, in an effort to offer products that fulfilled the company’s new key concepts of high speed, ease of use and high image quality.

In 2012, EOS video technology was transformed for the B-to-B sphere in the form of the Cinema EOS System, marking Canon’s entry into the video production industry. 

From there on, Canon continued to serve an increasingly diverse range of users. In the year 2018, the EOS R System was born from Canon’s desire to construct the ideal lens mount and maximise the appeal of its new RF lenses. In the year 2020, Canon followed up with the EOS R5, the world’s first digital camera to feature 8K recording (2). The next year, 2021 witnessed the launch of the EOS R3, that boasts eye-control AF capability, and the EOS VR System for recording VR content.

Enabling visual expression through still photography, video, and even VR content, the EOS system expands the possibilities of visual expression with a lineup comprising a total of 21 EOS series cameras (3) and 104 RF and EF lenses (4). Further underwriting the company’s long-running and expansive user base, Canon has maintained the world’s No.1 share (5) of digital interchangeable-lens cameras since 2003—a total of 18 years running. 

Canon will continue to refine its diverse imaging technologies based on its core optical technology to create an even stronger EOS System that meets the needs of increasingly diverse users to promote the spread of photo and video culture. 

* Information and pictures courtesy of Canon Singapore and GLOO *


(1) The EF35-70mm f/3.5-4.5, EF35-105mm f/3.5-4.5 and EF50mm f/1.8 were released alongside the EOS 650.  

(2) Among interchangeable-lens digital cameras available as of July 8, 2020. 

(3) Includes 5 digital cinema cameras for video production. As of February 24, 2022. 

(4) Includes 30 EF cinema lenses (EF and PL mount) and 4 lens extenders. As of February 24, 2022. 

(5) Shares of unit sales. Based on Canon research.  

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