The Magic of Firmware: Canon EOS M AF Speed Boost Seen in Videos


Earlier this month, Canon announced that there’s a firmware update for the Canon EOS M on the way that will boost the mirrorless camera’s sluggish autofocusing speeds by up to 2.3x. Given that AF slowness is one of the biggest gripes EOS M owners have with the camera, the news was likely music to many a EO M owner’s ear.

If you want to see what this 2.3x looks like in real life, Korean photographer Daero Lee has published a number of comparison videos showing updated and non-updated EOS Ms focusing on things.

EOS M + EF-M 18-55mm @ 18mm


Here’s a comparison showing the camera shooting at 18mm with the EF-M 18-55mm kit lens. Left side is old (slow) autofocus speeds with firmware 1.0.6, and right side is what the camera is like after the v2.0.2 update:


(This first test may not be a very good one due to the fact that the autofocus modes appear to be different in the two tests. e.g. multi vs single point)

EOS M + EF-M 18-55mm @ 55mm

Same test, except with the lens fully zoomed in at 55mm. Left is old and slow, right is new and fast:


EOS M + EF-M 22mm


Finally, the same test using the EF-M 22mm prime lens. Left is slow, right is fast:


Now if only a nice viewfinder could also be added in via a firmware update…

(via CanonWatch)

  • 5432dfdd232223e

    no matter what some idiots say on the web.
    the EOS-M is a great camera and i can use over 60 lenses with it.
    not only in manual mode via adapter but with full AF and metering.
    yes it is not the best mirrorless for sport photography.. but hey it has great image quality and its has a great supporting SYSTEM.
    m43 is dead in 5 years….

  • chlky0001

    You can pretty much use over 60 lenses with any APSC Canon dslr in production…big deal?

    Some people have their mind fixed at the idea of adapting lenses, despite the troubles like slow AF and annoying ergnomics…if you are just so into using the old lens, pick up a proper dslr and use it, at least you will have something to grab on and won’t accidentally drop the abnormally combination of huge lens and small body

  • 543554ftretfe

    yeh dumschwätzer but not with other mirrorless cameras…. brainiac.

  • KlausP1

    some spastis don´t get it but you are right.
    with the EOS-M you have access to the full canon EF portifolio.
    unlike other mirrorless cameras with very limited choice of lenses.
    and you can be sure that canon supports the EOS-M system.. unlike panasonic or olympus who hardly make a dime with cmaeras.

  • Genkakuzai

    Great news for the EOS M system! I still have faith that they might introduce something interesting in this mount. Gimme a good viewfinder, better grip and a few real good L primes and I’ll even be slightly interested.

  • Ivar

    Your assumption is one already has Canon SLR. Who would buy a hefty and insanely expensive lens to make a small camera bigger and heavier?

    Was the M camera cheap with almost no lenses? No.
    IQ is great, as great as Canon had 5 years ago, with its DR limitations.

    Your idiot.

  • iowapipe

    for me: buying a new ‘back’ for my big lenses defeats the purpose of having a small camera with me. I don’t want to be swapping lenses, or hauling a couple around. Others won’t mind. But that is why this camera isn’t going into my pocket.

    I like how my rx100 is small enough to go anywhere easily. When I need/want my 5d3, I pack it along in whatever bag I need to haul it in.

    I am glad the software update improved the performance of course, it was frustrating to use before, and definitely a reason I wouldn’t have purchased it if I was looking hard at it.

  • louisleblanc

    I think eos-m is much more likely to die off in the next 5 years than m43. Canon needs to invest heavily into EF-M to make it work, something I highly doubt. Sure you can use EF and EF-S lenses but what’s the point on such a small camera? You might as well get a Rebel. I don’t see Canon coming out with a decent lens selection that would be EF-M native when they can’t even do EF-S right. There’s really only 3 decent EF-S lenses. For the rest you need to buy the EF versions but there’s quite a few problems with that. First off, the lenses are much larger than they need to be and they cost more. Canon still doesn’t have a decent normal prime offering for EF-S.

    Canon seems to be purposely leaving stuff out of their cameras lately to force customers to their more expensive offerings. For that reason, I don’t see Canon being at the fore front of mirorless, they’ll try to keep the SLR going for as long as they can, even in the amateur market. By that time, we’ll probably see lots of traction and lenses out from m43, Fuji X and Sony nex.

  • Matt Jackson

    After using the eos-m for nightclub photography (past 4 weeks) i can say its auto focus is very slow side by side my rebel. I put this partly down to your hand being in the way of the af assist lamp if you hold the lens with your left hand (like i do). For typical family point and shoot use while out and about with the family, the camera performs ok. my panny tz8 is faster at taking a shot, although the images arent as detailed as the eos-m using the stock 18-55 lens. the camera is very small making your hands feel very big when using it. i guess this is a trade off over a full body or g series. after all the reason i purchased this camera was its size – i didnt want to have a huge camera pointing in clubbers faces – cant wait to get the 11-22mm lens, and this firmware had better make some improvements or this will be replaced with the NEX!

  • Kevin Steele

    It seems to me that the new dual-pixel AF technology used on the new EOS 70D would be an ideal fit for future EOS-M cameras.

  • Anne

    Thanks to you, I know have an updated camera. I loved my EOS-M before, but now I love it more. It’s a great camera -I have my good camera and lenses for the specific event I am photographing. This is my take-with-me everywhere camera and now I like it even more. I use the 22 mm lens, no flash, and I love what I can do with it.

  • mavfan1

    I agree, I have a 5D MK II and Leica M9 but I often grab the EOS M with 22mm lens when I’m just heading out for a non photo-specific trip because it fits in my jacket so easily. And I usually end up with more interesting photos when I just happen to have a camera than when I go out specifically to shoot.

  • dyna

    Canon is so late to the mirrorless party, their next iteration is going to have to be something truly extraordinary if they are going to continue. Fuji is killing them, Sony is doing things Canon refuses to do simply because it’s against their religion, and Oly and Panasonic have as deep and useful a system as one could as for at this point, tilt-shift lenses notwithstanding but mount adapters actually make really good sense for t/s since they’re manual focus any way. It wasn’t just the focus speed that killed the EOS M in the US market. It was the absolute disdain with which Canon released it: over priced, underaccessorized in the box, with a backward firmware running the show that seemed designed from the ground up to frustrate and get in the way. The picture quality was very good! The rest of the experience: total trash. And don’t give me the EOS M adapter to EF… there are simply zero advantages to this piece over using a Metabones EFMKIII on, say, an NEX6, or A7, with existing Canon glass. The EOS M gave Canonites little reason to truly believe Canon saw mirrorless products as anything other than an annoyance, a bee flying around the honey trough Canon thought was all theirs and have come to find… not so.