Canon Inc. announced today the achievement of a new camera-manufacturing milestone as combined production of the company’s EOS-series film and digital single-lens reflex (SLR) cameras passed the 40 million mark.
Production of the EOS SLR camera first began in 1987 at Canon Inc.’s Fukushima Plant (now Fukushima Canon Inc.), and then later moved to Canon Inc., Taiwan; Oita Canon Inc.; and most recently Nagasaki Canon Inc. from March of this year. In 1997, the 10th anniversary of the series, production reached 10 million units, and in 2003 passed the 20-million mark. After the rapid spread of digital SLR cameras, Canon went on to reach the 30-million mark during the series’ 20-year anniversary in December 2007, followed by the current 40-million-unit production milestone, attained after a short two years and four months. Furthermore, the EOS Digital series also recorded a production milestone of 20 million units.
The EOS series, which stands for “Electro Optical System” and also carries the name of the Greek goddess of the dawn, was first introduced in March 1987 as a new generation of AF SLR cameras that incorporate the world’s first electronic mount system, achieving complete electronic control not only between the lens and body but throughout the entire camera system.
With the key concepts of high speed and ease-of-use, the EOS-series cameras, including the top-of-the-line EOS-1 professional model, which was first introduced in 1989, and the compact, lightweight EOS Rebel (EOS Kiss or EOS 1000 in other regions), which was released in 1990 and helped to expand Canon’s user base, actively incorporated innovative technologies and gained acceptance from a wide range of users. Following the introduction of the EOS D30 in 2000, a time when the spread of digital SLR cameras was in full swing, Canon developed such advanced technologies as its proprietary CMOS sensors and the high-performance DIGIC digital image processor, as well as an extensive lineup of EF lenses in an effort to fulfill the company’s new key concepts of high speed, ease-of-use, and high image quality.
Canon further expanded its rich product lineup with the release of the entry-level EOS Rebel T2i (EOS Kiss X4 or EOS 550D) digital SLR camera in February of this year, which features an approximately 18.0-million pixel CMOS sensor and supports an extended ISO range, bringing the total to seven cameras—two professional, three advanced-amateur, and two entry-level models—in the EOS series.