Apparently our posts on the possible costs of the Canon 5D replacement attracted some attention at Canon. I have an old friend high up in Canon USA who frequently travels to the home offices in Japan, and he contacted me yesterday with some "allowable leaks." The news is good for Canon fans. The 5D replacement, which will be called the 4D (even Canon balked at the implications of "3D," apparently), will be out by August. It is slated to have an innovative full-frame 31-MP CMOS sensor with switchable IS in-the-body. But the real news is that the full 31-MP is reserved for a "big print" mode, usable only up to ISO 800; the real meat is a half-rez 15.5-MP mode in which the camera gives it highest image quality and best high-ISO performance. In this mode, the camera is said to better the sharpness and resolution of cameras that have no anti-aliasing filters (think Leica M8).
The 4D will be 19% lighter and approximately 30% smaller than the current 5D. Although the eventual cost will be $2,995, there will be a generous $1,000 rebate for at least the first month after introduction and possibly as long as three months, to counter the formidable challenges expected from Sony and Nikon—making the introductory cost a very aggressive $1,995. "Canon has no intention of relinquishing the leadership position it has gained from decades of innovation and superior products," quoth my contact. The introductory price in the U.K. (where it will be called the 4AD)? A mere £1,049.