The Defender – Canon EOS M6

ATheDefender2Canon M-series cameras have gone through many ups and downs right from its launch, but mirrorless is indeed the road forward for any camera company. The flagship M5 is quite a capable camera, though the small inventory of lenses may not make it quite attractive. The EOS M6 is a replacement to the EOS M3 and is characterised by the lack of an EVF, which makes it more compact than the M5.

Design and Build Quality
The EOS M6 is quite compact and ergonomically designed. The camera is predominantly made of polycarbonate. The main difference from the M5 is that it does not feature an electronic viewfinder. The M6 has two command dials on top along with an exposure compensation dial and a mode dial. The top right portion is a little cluttered, because of the popup flash on the right side leaving no space for dials. You can easily miss the flash lever, which is right below the left side strap ear. The Wi-Fi button is on the left side along with the HDMI and remote control ports. The back of the camera is largely occupied by the LCD with the remaining area featuring the multi-controller, control dial and four buttons. The lens mount is metal and so is the tripod receptacle.

Key Features
The EOS M6 uses an APS-C size (22.3 x 14.9mm) CMOS imaging sensor with 24.2 effective megapixels. The camera accepts Canon EF-M lenses. The camera features Dual pixel CMOS AF, providing options of 1-point AF, Smooth zone AF and face + tracking priority AF. It uses 49 autofocus points and AF operation can be selected from One-shot, Servo and Continuous AF. You can select from three focus modes — AF, MF, and AF+MF. The M6 uses the image sensor for real-time metering. Metering modes available are Evaluative, Partial, Spot and Centre-weighted average. Exposure can be compensated by +/-3 stops in increments of 1/3 stops. Sensitivity ranges from ISO 100 to 25,600 with an additional Auto option. Auto Exposure Bracketing can be done for up to 2 stops in 1/3-stop increments.

The M6 includes White Balance modes such as Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten light, White fluorescent light, Flash, Colour temperature and Custom. Auto Lighting Optimiser and Highlight Tone Priority are provided. Lens correction features include Peripheral illumination correction, Chromatic aberration correction and Diffraction correction.

The camera uses an electronicallycontrolled, focal-plane shutter, providing shutter speeds from 30 to 1/4000 seconds along with Bulb. The flash synchronises with shutter at 1/200 seconds or slower speeds. Shooting modes available are Auto, iAuto, Program (P), Shutter priority (Tv), Aperture priority (Av), Manual (M), Custom (C1, C2), Movie, Creative Filters and Scene. Creative filters include Grainy B/W, Soft focus, Fish-eye effect, Art bold effect, Water painting effect, Toy camera effect, and Miniature effect. Picture styles available are Auto, Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Fine Detail, Neutral, Faithful, Monochrome and User Defined (3 settings).

The M6 has a built-in manual pop-up type flash with a Guide Number of 5m at ISO 100. The flash recharges in approximately 3sec in manual mode. The camera has a, accessory shoe (hot-shoe) compatible with EXseries speedlites. Flash metering is through E-TTL II autoflash and flash exposure can be compensated up to ±2 stops in 1/3-stop increments. Drive modes available are Single, High-speed continuous and Low-speed continuous. Self-timer provides options such as Off, 2 sec., 10 sec., Custom and Remote

Still images are recorded in JPEG or Raw format with an option to record Raw and JPEG simultaneously at maximum dimensions of 6000 x 4000 pixels. In high speed continuous mode, the camera can capture full size images at up to 9 frames per second. It can capture a maximum burst of 26 JPEG Large / Fine, 17 Raw or 16 Raw + JPEG Large / Fine images. The M6 records movies with MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 compression in MP4 format with the highest quality being 1920 x 1080 (Full HD) at 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p or 24p. The camera has a built-in stereo microphone and an additional external stereo microphone can be attached.

The M6 uses a wide, tiltable 3.0- inch, approx. 1.04 million dot TFT touch LCD with capacitive sensing touch screen. The device accepts an SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card (UHS-I compatible) for storage. The interface includes Hi-Speed USB, HDMI OUT Type D and 3.5mm stereo mini jack. The camera has built-in Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth. The M6 is powered by an LP-E17 battery pack. The camera weighs approximately 390g with battery and card and has dimensions of approximately 112.0 x 68.0 x 44.5mm (WxHxD).

The EOS M6 is quite compact and lightweight. The camera has a contoured rubber-finished grip and protruding thumb rest, making it comfortable to operate. The dials are all knurled to make it easier to rotate and have optimal damping with click stops. The LCD, though not top quality, displays images crisp and clear. The LCD tilts almost 180 degrees up and about 45 degrees down. All controls are within reach.