Canon EOS M5 Review

While Canon and Nikon have long held a dominant position in the market for DSLR cameras, the company has had difficulty achieving the same level of success with mirrorless cameras. The EOS M was, to say the least, unimpressive, with weak focusing performance; the EOS M3 and M10 haven’t really advanced the range that much either.

However, the introduction of the M5 may cause things to become somewhat more chaotic. The Canon EOS M5 is meant to appeal to experienced users and sits at the top of Canon’s (although still limited) mirrorless line. Canon hopes that it will appeal to current owners of higher-end EOS DSLRs who are searching for a more portable alternative to their DSLRs.

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Canon EOS M5 Mirrorless Camera Body - Wi-Fi Enabled & Bluetooth

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Last update was on: May 28, 2023 5:16 am


  • Brand-new APS-C CMOS sensor with 24.2 million pixels
  • Excellent control through the touchscreen
  • Only captures videos at 1080p resolution

The EOS M5 is equipped with a brand-new 24.2 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor; nevertheless, its ancestry can be traced back to the outstanding sensor that was previously present in the EOS 80D enthusiast DSLR. This sensor has a sensitivity range that extends from 100 to 25,600.

While the EOS M3 featured a Hybrid CMOS AF III system that was a noticeable improvement over its predecessor, the EOS M5 takes advantage of Canon’s latest sensor technology and uses its now proven Dual Pixel CMOS AF, which has impressed in the past, partnered with its latest DIGIC 7 image processor. The original EOS M suffered from a notoriously slow autofocus system, and while the EOS M3 featured a Hybrid CMOS AF III system that was

The electronic viewfinder that is included inside the Canon EOS M5 is the first of its kind for the company’s line of mirrorless cameras and features a resolution of 2.36 million dots and a refresh rate of 120 frames per second. There is also a huge tilt-angle display that is 3.2 inches in size, and what’s really great to see is that Canon has included touchscreen technology here, much as it did with the 5D Mark IV.

It is possible to tilt the screen upwards by around 85 degrees for waist-level photography, and downwards by up to 180 degrees for taking selfies with your M5. It has the same remarkable resolution of 1,620,000 dots that we found on the Canon 5D Mark IV and Canon 1D X Mark II.

The EOS M5 is not just Wi-Fi and NFC compatible, but it also has Bluetooth built-in, making it the most connected Canon camera we’ve ever seen. This enables a low-power, continuous connection to be maintained between the camera and the smart device, which will hopefully make it easy to send photos back and forth between the two.

Even while it is possible to shoot at up to 60 frames per second, the EOS M5 only records video in 1080p resolution, which may come as a bit of a surprise given that 4K video recording was just added to the 5D Mark IV and is becoming increasingly commonplace on competing cameras.

While other companies like Fuji, Olympus, and Panasonic have been steadily expanding their lens ranges over the past few years to cover a range of focal lengths, with a decent mix of primes and zooms to suit a range of budgets, Canon’s EF-M lens range currently only consists of seven lenses. These other companies’ lens ranges cover a range of focal lengths, with a decent mix of primes and zooms to suit a range of budgets.

The fastest of them is a 22mm prime lens with an aperture of f/2. There are no good optics with an aperture of f/1.4 included in this set. Five of these lenses are somewhat sluggish variable-aperture zoom lenses. It is true that an EF-EOS M adapter is available, which makes it possible to use Canon’s extensive collection of EF-mount lenses; however, mounting often bulky lenses on a small body seems a little backward, given that the M5 is intended to be a smaller, more pocketable alternative to an EOS DSLR system.

It is difficult to say if Canon will wait to see if the EOS M5 is successful before producing additional lenses for it, but the fact that the M5 has such a restricted selection of specialized lenses in comparison to its competitors may be one of the primary factors that cause it to lag behind.

Design & Handling

  • Construction made of polycarbonate
  • The button for the dial function
  • Weighs 427g

The EOS M5, in contrast to its predecessors in the EOS M series of CSCs, has the appearance of a mini DSLR. This is in part due to the fact that the built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) of the EOS M5 is positioned relatively centrally above the lens. Additionally, the raised hump of the camera contains a small built-in flash that is hidden away. It is, to say the least, on the little side, but not to the point where picking it up presents any difficulties.

The subtle two-tone finish of the EOS M5 provides the camera a luxury look, with the metallic grey matching that of the lenses in the EF-M line. This finish takes its style elements from both the EOS DSLR and mirrorless ranges.

In spite of its looks, the chassis is made out of durable polycarbonate rather than aluminum alloy, and it weighs a total of 427 grams (body alone) when combined with the battery and the card. A notable plasticky feel is there in the hand, especially when tapping the top plate; yet, the moderate grip is excellent and comfortable, with Canon’s appealing textured rubber covering improving the sensation. This is despite the fact that there is no way to avoid the plasticky feel.

Numerous controls are integrated directly into the body of the EOS M5, making it the most enthusiast-oriented mirrorless camera that Canon has produced to this point. The shutter button of this camera, like the shutter button on other EOS mirrorless cameras, is surrounded by a front command dial, and there is an exposure compensation dial located on the rear of the camera (similar to that seen on the likes of the Fuji X-T2).

The inclusion of a Dial Func, on the other hand, has been modeled after Canon’s lineup of enthusiast small cameras in the G-series. button, which is functionally equivalent to a command dial but also includes an extra button in the dial’s center.

On Canon DSLRs with top-plate LCDs, there are four buttons dotted along the top for access to ISO, WB, etc. On the M5, you simply need to press this central button, which will then allow you to toggle through the settings (White Balance, ISO, Metering mode, AF mode, and Drive mode), and select one by pressing the button again. This is in contrast to Canon DSLRs with top-plate LCDs, which have four buttons dotted along the top for access to ISO, WB, etc

You may choose to have the setting you’ve picked shown in the viewfinder or on the back screen. After making your selection, you can then alter the setting you want to use by using the command dial. In actual use, it’s a system that delivers a polished method for swiftly accessing and modifying a variety of important settings, so we have no choice but to state that it works really well.

In addition to a rear scroll wheel control with four-way controls, there is a decent degree of customization available, and that’s not even counting the touchscreen interface, which makes selecting desired settings and reviewing images that much more straightforward, while there are some clever tricks that allow for quick AF selection.


  • 49-point AF system
  • Points of phase detection incorporated into the sensor
  • Servo AF in addition to One-shot AF

As we’ve already discussed, the original Canon EOS M received a lot of criticism for having a slow autofocus performance. There were no issues with its precision; rather, the issue was the length of time it required to lock onto subjects; in comparison to its competitors, it was not even close to being as quick. Since then, things have gotten better with the M3 and the M10, and the M5 things take things up a considerable notch higher than they were before.

The camera utilizes Canon’s most recent Dual Pixel CMOS AF technology, in which each pixel on the surface of the sensor is composed of two distinct photodiodes. These photodiodes are read independently for phase-detection AF and collectively for imaging.

This mechanism has previously pleased us in cameras like the EOS 80D and the 5D Mark IV, and it continues to do so with the EOS M5. When compared to the performance of the first generation EOS M, the AF nearly cannot be recognized.

The ability to touch and move the AF point with your thumb on the back display while you have the camera lifted to your eye makes it extremely easy to pick a rapid AF region. Focusing is pleasant and fast, and this feature also makes it possible to do so. You are not required to swipe over the entirety of the display either; under the menu, you have the option of limiting the functionality to either one-half or one-fourth of the screen.

The coverage is also fairly excellent, covering 80% of the image area, and there are 49 AF points available to you (arranged in a grid of 7 x 7). Additionally, face tracking and subject tracking may be chosen.


  • 7 frames per second in continuous autofocus mode
  • The battery capacity of 295 shots
  • Connectivity through Wi-Fi as well as Bluetooth

With the assistance of Canon’s brand new DIGIC 7 image processor, the EOS M5 is able to take photos at a rate of 7 frames per second while maintaining the full autofocus and light metering capabilities. It can maintain this speed for up to (approximately) 31 JPEG files before slowing down to 4 frames per second, and it will continue at this rate until the memory card is full. If you desire to shoot quicker than this, you may do so at a rate of 9 frames per second; however, focusing and metering will be locked once the shutter has been released; you can maintain this pace for a maximum of 26 JPEGs.

The metering system of the EOS M5 offers the choice of evaluative, partial, center-weighted, and spot metering modes, with the default evaluative option working well (as with the shot above). However, it is important to keep in mind that this is hooked up to the chosen AF point, so you might need to dial in some exposure compensation in certain scenarios.

It has a decent 120fps refresh rate, and while the 0.62x magnification isn’t the biggest out there, the view doesn’t feel cramped when you raise your eye up to it. It compares favorably with competitors such as the Fujifilm X-T10 and the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II. The electronic viewfinder (EVF) is very good.

Tap the Quick Menu button, and you’ll be able to select and modify every important setting with ease. The touchscreen interface of the rear LCD is excellent, and it integrates flawlessly with the controls that are mounted to the body of the M5 to provide you with easy access to virtually any core setting you could want.

Swiping left and right to cycle through photographs is a piece of cake, and the pinch-to-zoom function makes it simple to make a speedy evaluation of the image’s clarity. Additionally, tapping to alter the AF point works like a charm, as we’ve previously said.

The M5’s battery life of 295 shots isn’t quite as impressive as the X-350, or T10’s we strongly suggest purchasing an additional battery for this model. On the other hand, the M5’s combination of Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth connectivity makes it very easy to transfer photos from the camera to a mobile device.

Image quality

  • ISO100-25,600
  • Integrated filter with a low pass bandpass
  • +/-3 EV exposure correction in increments of 1/3 or 1/2 stop

Even though there has been a recent trend of removing an optical low-pass filter from sensors in an effort to extract even more detail, Canon has elected to keep the filter on the chip that makes up the M5, and the 24-megapixel sensor is still capable of producing an abundance of detail, particularly at lower ISO settings.

This not only gives the possibility for making decent-quality A3+ prints, but it also means that you may crop photographs very aggressively if the situation calls for it thanks to the flexibility given by the densely filled sensor.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the EOS M5 does a good job of handling noise because, as we’ve established, its sensor has a lot of similarities with that of the 80D, whose sensor was outstanding in this regard.

The Canon EOS M5 produces photographs that are exceptionally clear and free of noise between ISO 100 and 400, and even after adjusting those settings, the camera continues to provide results that are satisfactory. At an ISO setting of 1600, luminance noise, which appears as a grainy pattern, first becomes visibly apparent. At an ISO setting of 3200, color noise also begins to make an appearance.

Beyond this point, detail begins to degrade as well, although the results are more than passable at ISO6400, while at the maximum setting of ISO25,600, photographs do exhibit a smudgy loss of detail but are still usable.


There are many things to enjoy about Canon’s little EOS M5 camera. Its refined handling, which includes a thoughtful control arrangement that is perfectly combined with the touchscreen interface, making it a pleasant camera to shoot with. The APS-C sensor, which has a resolution of 24 megapixels, is responsible for producing photos with an abundance of detail.

The electronic viewfinder (EVF) also functions very well, and the autofocus system has been vastly enhanced as a result of the incorporation of Dual Pixel CMOS AF. AF point selection through an area of the touchscreen is a pleasurable experience.

Given that several competitors now incorporate 4K video as a normal setting, there is a possibility that some customers may consider the lack of this feature to be a mistake. Additionally, the relatively limited variety of EF-M lenses may be perceived as restrictive. It is true that you are able to use Canon’s extensive collection of EF and EF-S lenses by means of an adapter; however, in light of the fact that other manufacturers, such as Micro Four Thirds and Fuji, are offering an expanding selection of dedicated lenses, the fairly basic collection of EF-M lenses appears to be lacking in comparison, which is not in line with the high-end credentials of the EOS M5.

Canon EOS M5 Specs

Body typeSLR-style mirrorless
Body materialMetal
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Other resolutions3:2 (6000 x 4000, 3984 x 2656, 2976 x 1984, 2400 x 1600), 16:9 (6000 x 3368, 3984 x 2240, 2976 x 1680, 2400 x 1344), 4:3 (5328 x 4000, 3552 x 2664, 2656 x 1992, 2112 x 1600), 1:1 (4000 x 4000, 2656 x 2656, 1984 x 1984, 1600 x 1600)
Image ratio w:h1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors26 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (22.3 x 14.9 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorDigic 7
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
ISOAuto, 100-25600
White balance presets6
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Image stabilization notes5-axis for video only
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, standard
File formatJPEG (Exif v2.3)Raw (Canon CR2, 14-bit)
Optics & Focus
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousTouchFace DetectionLive View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points49
Lens mountCanon EF-M
Focal length multiplier1.6×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDTilting
Screen size3.2″
Screen dots1,620,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeElectronic
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder resolution2,360,000
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Exposure modesProgramShutter priorityAperture priorityManual
Built-in flashYes
Flash range5.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flashYes
Flash X sync speed1/200 sec
Continuous drive9.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 secs, custom, remote)
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpotPartial
Exposure compensation±3 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±2 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Videography features
Modes1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 35 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 24 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1280 x 720 @ 60p / 16 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC card
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (micro-HDMI)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portNo
Wireless notes802.11/b/g/n with Bluetooth and NFC
Remote controlYes (Wired, wireless, or smartphone)
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLP-E17 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)295
Weight (inc. batteries)427 g (0.94 lb / 15.06 oz)
Dimensions116 x 89 x 61 mm (4.57 x 3.5 x 2.4″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes

Canon EOS M5 Price


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