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Gear Rumors

Canon To Debut New ‘Global Shutter’ Tech Into Upcoming DSLR?

By Anthony Thurston on January 27th 2014

For as long as there has been DSLR video, there has been the issue of rolling shutter. You know, that odd effect where the video gets all wobbly and bendy if you pan too fast one way or the other. It has become sort of an accepted drawback of using DSLRs for video, but it appears that Canon may be looking to change that…


According to the latest from the Canon rumor mill, Canon may be releasing a yet-to-be-named DSLR that will feature global shutter technology. An advancement that would mean no more rolling shutter for shooters of this camera.

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Global Shutter – or Electronic Shutter, as you may know it – technology is different from the standard tech used in today’s DSLRs. Put simply, when in live view, the camera’s physical shutter would not move, and the sensor would capture the scenes 24 times every second to create the video. A standard DSLR camera still uses the physical shutter in live view, so the sensor must scan up with the shutter, which is what causes the rolling shutter effect.

(Rolling Shutter vs Total (Global) Shutter Comparison courtesy of

The reason global shutters have not been implemented already is that they are very expensive to implement, not only on the sensor level, but also in the rest of the camera hardware required to make it work. A global shutter requires the camera to process large amounts of data at once, in a small period of time. So the tech surrounding the sensor needs to be beefed up to handle the extra load.

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If this rumor is indeed true, it would likely send shock waves throughout the DSLR and indie video world. It would remove one of the biggest drawbacks of shooting video with a DSLR, and make them much more attractive for video shooters. But, as with all rumors – especially loose ones such as this, it is important to remember that nothing is official until it is announced by the company.

What are your thoughts on this development, Would you welcome a global shutter in your DSLR? Share your thoughts below to join the discussion.

[via Canon Rumors]

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Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Michael Dobson

    I have been waiting for the canon 5d mk4 upgrade for 18 months only to find it suffers severe shutter lag, I’m told this can also have a negative effect on fast moving objects it tracks in burst mode. Personally i wouldn’t mind paying the additional costs involved in incorporating the global cmos sensor into DSLR cameras, in order to cure this problem of shutter lag and very possibly up the burst rate and increase the dynamic range of the cameras abilities.

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  2. Jason

    Blackmagic already did this and with 4k to boot for $3,000. Bet Canon didn’t expect that…

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  3. Richard

    Isn’t the global shutter than same thing as a CCD sensor?

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    • Peter

      CCD cameras do have global shutter, but its 3 sensors not one (with the attendent bulk for a given sensor size that entails even without the splitting optics).

      Global shutter doesn’t behave quite like a physical shutter, though it is a lot closer that rolling shutter.

      As mentioned above the best compromise currently mooted may well be REDs system (they bought up a company developing the tech) which is essentially a LCD element in the lens mount that also can replicate ND filters.

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    • luftweg

      I thought there are both single sensor CCD cameras, as well as 3 sensor CCD cameras?
      Most of the newer ones that can do video have a single CCD sensor, but with a Bayer-pattern sensor (to get all the colors), right? (though something tells me the Panavision Genesis does not use Bayer-type, but a ‘true’ RGB CCD sensor(?))….. I had an older Kodak/Canon EOS 1n DSLR which did in fact have a (single) CCD sensor (for stills only). I think the traditional color TV cameras almost always had 3 CCD sensors (or 3 tubes, or similar) to capture each color, R-G-B, for example the Betacam and HDcam Sony ones (?). The triple sensor types must not be nearly as light-sensitive because the light from the lens would have to be split into three by a prism.
      From what I’m led to believe CMOS sensors can also be more (inexpensively?) light sensitive.
      ** But my question is: if the readout of the CMOS sensor can be made faster and faster, wouldn’t it nearly approach being a global shutter? …. And isn’t the relatively lower video frame rates of CMOS cameras tied to the readout (at least in large part)?

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  4. Dave

    Well, I am aware of what a global shutter is and it would be great if they implemented it, but is this really a big deal. And before anyone rolls their eyes at that comment, is there where all of Canon’s R&D should have went. Lets be honest, as long as you don’t pan fast during video, you’re never even going to notice it.

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  5. John

    “A standard DSLR camera still uses the physical shutter in live view”

    Really? When shooting video? That would mean the shutter is opening and closing at 24, 30, or 60 (or more) times a second. Isn’t the issue with rolling shutter and DSLR video the way in which CMOS sensors scan the photosites???

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    • Peter

      When shooting stills in Live view a physical shutter is still used, its only for video that it isn’t. This does mean that the way it is read has to work with a physical shutter for when its doing stills, and multiple scan systems aren’t exactly easy to implement. I think thats what that part meant

      There are digital video cameras with physical shutters, but they are fantastically pricy and wear out.

      CCD based cameras have global shutters, but do require 3 sensors and the bulk that requires for a given size.

      One manufacturer (RED) have produced a mount (PL and EF versions announced) that uses LCD like tech (may even be LCD) to provide both variable ND and a shutter substitute to help combat this.

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  6. David Liang

    This is really exciting news. But they are a business and if they do this they’ll start with their top level cameras, and it’ll take years before it trickles down to consumer level cameras.

    If I had to guess they’ll start with the C100/C300 and 1DC cameras.

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  7. Axel Brunst

    Don’t forget about high sync-speeds with speedlights! No more 1/250th seconds or expensive gear needed…

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  8. Herm

    Condescending much, Michal ?

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    • Dave

      well to be fair Michal had a point. if this was something that John wanted to know, why did he wait to get informed, and not just look for it himself? :) Not looking for an argument….just an observation

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    • CC

      So the lesson here is, if something has been explained once anywhere at any time on the Internet, no one ever need write about it again, and anyone who doesn’t already know it is probably an idiot. Yeah, great. Got it.

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  9. Óran

    Maybe this means canon is picking there game up again, as long as the DSLR isn’t super pricey

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  10. Darrel

    Could this possibly be used to increase the sync speed when using flash for still photos since there would be no moving shutter slit?

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  11. John Kim

    Kudos. Thanks for the simple but effective explanation of what global shutter means. Nobody including Canon Rumors, who also reported gives a good explanation like you guys did.

    I guess all the relevant sites assume that the interested readers understand what global versus rolling shutter means.

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    • Michal

      If you didn’t know what it was, it is not for you. If you didn’t know how to Google it, you have also other problems.

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    • CC

      @Michal Way to be a jerk about it for no reason. At least that’s not one of his problems.

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