Open Letter

Open letter to Canon about the EOS M50

Dear Canon and related individuals,

I have two firmware requests for the Canon EOS M50 (“Canon EOS Kiss M” in other areas of the world). I own two of these cameras and have been using them to make Youtube videos mostly. I’ve run into two usability issues. Both issues could be solved in firmware. I’m primarily a computer software developer and it is my opinion that both of these requests would not be especially significant in regard to development resources to implement. That said, I don’t consider these two requests as outlandish or extreme given the camera’s price point and existing feature set.

1. Please add an audio levels display to the actual video preview (it needs to stay visible while recording), not just the black info screen! This is a key feature to making videos reliably. Seeing levels while recording mitigates issues like a loose mic cable or a battery going out in an external microphone. I don’t understand why it is only on the textual information display screen. The functionality basically already exists in the camera, which doesn’t make sense to me as to the limited implementation to it.

2. Auto-focus settings are global, which is a pain when switching between taking photos and filming video. There are probably other settings that don’t change between modes, but I haven’t had a lot of serious time making content with my two M50 cameras yet. So far it has been confusing when trying to take photos and then switch quickly to recording a video clip because I often need different settings between the two that don’t save uniquely between modes. I’d like something in firmware such as a checkbox to have each mode (P, Av, Tv, M, video) work as it does now *or* if checked, it will save *all* settings for the camera unique to each standard mode (P, Av, Tv, M, video). That seems pretty straightforward to implement. Another way to do it would be to have software based C1 and C2 that would save all camera settings in those memory slots, maybe using the m-Fn button as a toggle between them.

I’ll eventually be making various videos about the M50. These two additions to firmware would greatly help me to recommend this camera to people. Here is one video I made where I use one M50 for photos and film video with a second M50. This worked out well, but I used one camera for photos only and one camera for video only.

I have a couple sets of footage from when I only had a single M50 with me, but I feel that the source material could have been much better if these two functions existed in the camera. Using one camera and switching frequently was rough enough to write up this open letter.

I appreciate anyone at Canon for taking the time to read this and forward it to their relevant contacts in Japan.






Best regards,
Scott Waldron

I haven’t written one of these in years! This describes a bit of my passion for the M50 as a hybrid photo/video tool. There is a lot it does right, but just a few additions would allow me to be more consistent and effective in the field. I went with the M50 because Canon does do a lot of what I need. It comes down to the small yet still very significant usability aspects.

PS: The 4K video recording capabilities of this camera are not ideal, but I won’t hold this against the camera. I invested in these tools knowing that it wasn’t especially useful given my workflow and type of filming that I do. I’ll assume the lackluster auto-focus performance is due to processing limitations and the desire to keep the camera fully functional when recording for long periods of time. I’d much rather have a camera that works reliably (with a few less bells and whistles) and consistently than one that overheats while performing a function that the camera officially “supports”. Obviously, cameras that “support” a feature but can’t consistently perform the function don’t truly support said feature. I’d say if it was a physical limitation then it’s an acceptable approach.