Canon EOS M100

      Photo Review 8.6

      In summary

      According to Canon’s press release when it was unveiled on 29 August 2017, the  EOS M100 has been designed for “those looking to step up from smartphone photography”. Its compact size and light weight are attractive features for smartphone snappers, although the new camera is marginally heavier than the EOS M10, the previous entry-level model.

      Snapshooters moving up from smartphones will also enjoy the many automated shooting modes and special effects the M100 provides.

      Drawbacks of the EOS M100/15-45mm combo include the lack of a built-in EVF and the need to shoot raw files for best results. See full review for details.  


      Full review

      The EOS M100, which was announced by Canon at the end of August in 2017, replaces the two-year-old EOS M10 at the entry level in Canon’s mirrorless camera line-up. Marginally larger and heavier, the new model features higher resolution, the latest DIGIC 7 processor and Dual Pixel CMOS AF. Touchscreen operation  is improved and the M100 adds Bluetooth to the camera’s wireless connections. But, like the slightly more up-market M6, which we reviewed in April 2017, it lacks a viewfinder ““ or any way to add one.


       Angled view of the EOS M100 with the pop-up flash raised and the EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens fitted. (Source: Canon.)

      The new model is certainly a step up from its predecessor and provides a few advantages over the more expensive EOS M6. But its video capabilities lag behind many smartphones, a common feature of entry-level cameras. So does the ease with which images and movie clips can be shared (although it’s better than many cameras at this level).

      The continuous shooting frame rate improves to 6.1 fps and the buffer memory can hold 89 JPEGs or 21 CR2.RAW files which is an overall improvement on the M10 and M6 cameras. Time-lapse shooting makes its first appearance in an entry-level camera ““ but only via the Movie mode and getting to it requires some menu diving. Key similarities and differences between the three models are shown in the table below


      EOS M10

      EOS M100

      EOS M6

      Effective resolution

      18 megapixels

      24.2 megapixels

      Image processor

      DIGIC 6

      DIGIC 7

      Shutter speeds

      30 – 1/4000 sec. plus Bulb

      Max. burst speed (fixed focus)

      4.2 fps

      6.1 fps

      9 fps

      Buffer capacity

      100 JPEG or 5 RAW  

      89 JPEG, 21 RAW

      26 JPEG or 17 RAW

      Auto ISO range

      Stills: 100-12800, Movies: 100-6400

      Stills: 100-25600, Movies: 100-6400



      AE, Flash

      AE only







      Optional EVF-DC1 attachment


      Tiltable (180 degrees up), 3-inch   LCD touch panel, 1,040,000 dots

      Tiltable (180 degrees up/45 degrees down), 3-inch   LCD touch panel, 1,040,000 dots

      AF technology

      Hybrid CMOS AF

      Dual Pixel CMOS AF

      EV compensation

      +/-3EV in 1/3EV steps


      Built-in GN 5


      1920 x 1080 (25p, 24p), 1280 x 720 (50p), 640 x 480 (30p, 25p)

      1920 x 1080 (50p, 25p, 24p), 1280 x 720 (50p), 640 x 480 (30p, 25p)

      1920 x 1080 (50p, 25p, 24p), 1280 x 720 (50p), 640 x 480 (30p, 25p)


      Wi-Fi, NFC

      Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC




      CIPA rated capacity

      255 shots/charge

      295 shots/charge

      295 shots/charge


      108 x 66.6 x 35 mm

      108.2 x 67.1 x 35.1 mm

      112.0 x 68.0 x 44.5 mm

      Weight (with battery & card)

      301 grams

      302 grams

      390 grams

      Taken as a whole, with the bundled 15-45mm kit lens, the EOS M100 could be the type of gear that convinces at least a few snapshooters that a ‘real’ camera will give them better pictures. It’s small and well-built with a dependable auto shooting mode and an easy user interface that encourages the use of manual controls.

      But serious photo enthusiasts will find it very limited and be put off by the primitive menu system and lack of a  built-in, high-resolution EVF. Unlike the EOS M6 it has no hot shoe for attaching one (or an external flash). The printed user manual is too basic to be of much assistance and lacks Canon’s usually comprehensive indexing facilities, making it difficult to find information you want. (The downloadable PDF manual includes an index.)

      The review camera was supplied with the  EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM  lens which we reviewed in December 2016. It’s the standard kit lens for Canon’s mirrorless cameras.

      Who’s it For?
       According to Canon’s press release when it was unveiled on 29 August 2017, the  EOS M100 has been designed for “those looking to step up from smartphone photography”. Its compact size and light weight are attractive features for smartphone snappers, although the new camera is marginally heavier than the EOS M10, the previous entry-level model.

      We can see this camera in the hands of snapshooters who will probably be seriously into taking ‘selfies’. Snapshooters moving up from smartphones will also enjoy the many automated shooting modes and special effects the M100 provides.

      But with the supplied lens attached, it’s not particularly pocketable  and, although the ‘bar of soap’ body design is good for casual sharpshooting and street photography, the relatively slow burst rate and lack of EVF make the M100 unsuitable for sports and wildlife photography.

      Price-wise, the M100 isn’t quite competitive enough with others of its ilk to rate as a bargain. And there are cameras available with high-resolution EVFs built-in that are on sale locally at similar (or lower) prices.

      Build and Ergonomics
      According to Canon’s specifications, the body of the EOS M100 is made from polycarbonate plastic. Build quality is above average for an entry-level camera, but there’s no escaping the plasticky feel.

      There’s no finger grip moulding on the front panel, although the textured finish resists slippage, and the thumb rest on the rear panel is a bit shallow to provide much support. Still, it’s more comfortable than shooting with a smart phone which provides nowhere to put your fingers.  


      Front view of the EOS M100 with no lens fitted. (Source: Canon.)

      Aside from the lens mount, which covers most of the front panel, the only features on the front of the camera are the lens release button and, above it, an LED that doubles as an AF illuminator and self-timer countdown light. The top panel is almost as sparsely populated with only four main controls.  


      Top view of the EOS M100 with the 15-45mm kit lens installed. (Source: Canon.)

      Working from the left you’ll find a built-in flash, the top of which lies flush with the top of the camera, It’s raised with a switch just below the strap loop on the same side of the camera and lowered by pushing it down.

      The flash pokes forward of the body and is high enough above the lens axis to reduce (but not prevent) red eyes in flash portraits. Red-eye correction is available via the playback menu.

      A little past the half-way point along the top panel is the mode switch, which has three positions: Auto, Camera and Movie. The Auto mode includes scene detection so the only way you can select scene pre-sets is to use the Camera mode. This mode also lets you access the P, Av, Tv and M settings as well as the Bulb setting for long exposures.

      In the centre of the mode switch is the power on/off button. The single control dial lies to the right of the mode switch  with a movie button (identified by a r4ed dot) close to the right hand edge of the panel.


      Rear view of the EOS M100 with the monitor partly raised. (Source: Canon.)

      There aren’t many controls on the rear panel, either; just a fairly basic arrow pad with directional buttons for accessing exposure compensation, flash, Info and AE lock settings.  A central Q/SET button accesses the Quick Menu and locks in selected settings.

      Above the arrow pad are buttons for opening the full Menu and connecting the camera via Wi-Fi with a previously-paired smart device. (We often triggered this button inadvertently when simply holding the camera, suggesting it is poorly situated for users with moderate-to-large hands.) Below the arrow pad is a single Playback button.

      The 3-inch   LCD monitor covers the rest of the rear panel. It’s hinged at the top and tilts up through 180 degrees, setting the camera into selfie mode with the Portrait pre-set engaged automatically. Unlike the screen on the EOS M6, the M100’s screen doesn’t tilt downwards.

      Unusually for an entry-level camera ““ and a welcome inclusion ““ the M100 has separate battery and card compartments. The latter is in the left hand side panel and it’s easiest to open if you tilt the monitor a little since the leading edge of the hinged cover tucks in just below the monitor frame.

      Just above the card compartment is a rather cramped interface panel that contains the USB and HDMI terminals. The USB terminal is a slow, type 2.0 mini port; not the more common micro type, and it can’t be used to charge the camera’s battery.

      The battery is in the usual place; a compartment in the base of the camera. It must be removed for charging in the supplied charger and is rated for 295 shots/charge, an average figure for a mirrorless camera. The only other item on the base plate is a metal-lined tripod socket, which is situated in line with the lens axis.

      Sensor and Image Processing
       Canon appears to have settled on using the same 24-megapixel APS-C chip for the current flagship compacts (G1X Mark III), mirrorless and entry-to-enthusiast DSLR cameras (200D, 750D, 760D, 800D, 77D, 80D). Consequently, image sizes in all these cameras are essentially identical. We’ve covered this sensor in our review of the EOS 77D.

      The specs cite a continuous shooting speed of 6.1 frames/second (fps) “while maintaining Auto Focus performance”. You can select continuous shooting with any of   the P, Av, Tv and M setting and it’s used by default with the Sports pre-set.

      ISO sensitivity ranges from 100 to 25600 in 1/3 Stop steps when you’re shooting stills or 100 to 6400 for movies. It can be extended to ISO 12800   in movie mode.

      Movie resolutions and frame rates  are also the same as the 77D’s. Interestingly, the EOS M100 includes a built-in time lapse movie mode, although it isn’t easy to access unless you have the downloadable User Manual on hand.

      To use the time-lapse mode you must have Video recording selected. This lets you choose Time-lapse from the three options offered (the others being Auto and Manual).

      Pressing the right button on the arrow pad opens the time-lapse menu, which provides three ‘Scene’ modes with different shot intervals and totals plus a Custom mode, the latter providing the widest range of settings. In this mode intervals can be set between two and 30 seconds and the number of shots between 30 and 900.

       Connectivity options are the same as in the EOS M6, with built-in Wi-Fi, low-power Bluetooth and NFC (Android devices only). The Bluetooth connection provides an always-on link that enables the camera to connect with a smart device for automatic transferring of images and movie clips.

      Once Wi-Fi is set up it can be used to connect the camera to the CANON iMAGE GATEWAY service, where an account must be set up requiring your email address and a four-digit password. Other web services can also be used for uploading images.

      Playback and Software
       Both are essentially the same as with other recently-released EOS cameras. Like most manufacturers, Canon supplies the software for managing and editing images and video clips via a free download service that is accessed from a central website ( Instructions for downloading the software can be found in the printed manual supplied with the camera. The same page also provides a link for downloading the full user manual in PDF format.

      Unsurprisingly (since they have the same sensor and image processor), the performance of the review camera was very similar to the results we obtained from the EOS M6. When shooting in the Scene Intelligent Auto mode with the default settings, which we used for many of the test shots shown below, the camera delivered JPEG images with modest contrast and saturation.

      Exposure measurement was generally good, although the camera had a few difficulties when subjects included wide dynamic ranges; for example part of the scene in shadow with the rest in bright sunlight. This is to be expected in a snapshooter’s camera.

      And, as with the EOS M6, the highest obtained with JPEG files was slightly below expectations for the 24-megapixel sensor. Raw files from the review camera delivered resolution that exceeded expectations when the optimal camera settings were used.

      The performance of the Dual Pixel CMOS AF system was slightly better than we found with the EOS M6 and we encountered a little less hunting for focus in low light levels.  Manual focusing was much the same as we found with the previous camera.

      In normal daylight, focusing became much faster and more accurate but it also became difficult to compose shots on the monitor screen in bright sunlight. Indoors and in shady conditions, the monitor was adequate ““ but only just. This reinforces the need for a viewfinder when shooting outdoors in Australia; a monitor screen on its own leads to point-and-guess shooting for most outdoor photography.

      Resolution across the sensitivity range was similar to what we found with the M6.   The graph below shows the results of our Imatest tests at the available ISO settings.


       Test shots were almost noise-free up to ISO 3200, after which both noise and softening became increasingly visible in long exposures. By ISO 12800, both were obvious visible when images were enlarged slightly. Half-second exposures at ISO 25600 were noticeably softened through noise-reduction processing but would be usable at small output sizes.

      As in the EOS M6, the default exposure for flash shots was at f/6.3, the widest aperture available at the 45mm focal length we used for our tests. Shutter speeds remained consistent at 1/60 second until ISO 6400, after which the lens was stopped down to f/7.1 and the shutter speed increased to 1/80 second at ISO 12800. At ISO   25600, the camera set the lens aperture to f/8 with a shutter speed of 1/100 second.

      But even with these adjustments, the built-in flash produced under-exposed shots with the 45mm focal length at ISO 100 but managed correct exposures between ISO 200 and ISO 3200 (inclusive). Slight over-exposure occurred at ISO 6400 but the two  top ISO settings were grossly over-exposed.

      Video quality was similar to the results we obtained with the M6 and generally good when recordings were made in normal light levels. As before, the 50 fps frame rate appeared to make little difference to the quality or smoothness of the recordings although it did provide a slightly slower playback speed.

      The camera’s autofocusing system was able to keep pace with moving subjects in movie mode, resulting in clips in which there were few lapses in focusing,  although exposure readjustments could take up to a second, depending on differences in ambient brightness. The dynamic range in movie clips was acceptably wide, even in contrasty lighting.

      Audio quality was similar to the quality we obtained from the EOS M3 and good for the size and location of the built-in microphones. Some wind noise was picked up when shooting outdoors in windy conditions, although the wind filter could generally suppress gentle breezes. No camera noises were detected in movie soundtracks.

      We conducted our timing tests with a 16GB SanDisl SDHC Class 10/UHS Class 1 card which supports read/write speeds of up to 40MB/s.   Interestingly, the results we obtained were almost identical to those we got from the M6.

      The review camera took just over a second to power up ready for shooting. We measured a consistent capture lag of 0.1 seconds when the shutter button was used to trigger the exposure and 0.3 seconds with the touch shutter. This lag was eliminated with pre-focusing when the shutter button was used. Shot-to-shot times averaged 0.55 seconds without flash.

      We measured an average cycle time of 4.5 seconds for the built-in flash, which is relatively slow. Recycling times become longer as the power is drained from the battery.

      Unlike the EOS M6, the M100 has no indicator light to show image processing times so we were unable to measure processing times with any degree of precision. We estimate typical processing times to be between half a second and a second, depending upon the file type and complexity of the subject.

      In the high-speed continuous shooting mode the review camera recorded 88 Large/Fine JPEGs in 14.1 seconds before slowing. This equates to approximately 6.1 frames/second and is in line with the camera’s specifications.

      With CR2.RAW files, the capture rate stalled after 18 frames, which were recorded in 2.9 seconds. When the camera was set to record RAW+JPEG pairs, capture rates slowed after 17 frames, which were recorded in 2.7 seconds.

       While it might be seen as unimportant to the target market (snapshooters looking to upgrade), the EOS M100/15-45mm combo has a few critical drawbacks for serious photographers. Firstly, the lack of a built-in EVF will always be a major barrier to its acceptance as a serious enthusiast’s or pro photographer’s camera ““ even as a conveniently-sized back-up body.  

      Secondly, in order to get the best results from this camera, you must shoot raw files. And that’s something most snapshooters simply won’t do – many are totally unaware of raw formats. There’s little incentive to upgrade to a mirrorless camera when smartphone is good enough in most situations and much easier when you want to share images online.

      Thirdly, the price of the M100 is high for an amateur’s camera, given the current competition from rival manufacturers. Olympus, Panasonic and Sony all offer camera+lens combos with built-in EVFs that provide equal or better functionality and performance than the EOS M100 and sell at similar prices.

      Already local re-sellers are offering the EOS M100 kit  at discounted prices, some cutting up to $150 off the Canon price. Further discounting could take place in the next month or two. So, price-wise, it’s not worth buying it from off-shore re-sellers; it will be cheaper to shop within Australia.

      Serious shooters should consider the EOS M5, which is a far more capable camera.   Better still, it might pay to wait for a month until the CP+ Show opens on 1 March. Rumours suggest some exciting new mirrorless cameras will be released around that time.

      Although the M100 is quite fun to use and does an OK job with both video and stills, particularly when the Full Auto shooting modes are used, on the whole it fails to excite as a photographic tool. As a market leader in interchangeable-lens cameras, we think Canon would be better off directing its attention to the ‘serious’ end of its mirrorless range.



       Image sensor: 22.3 x 14.9mm CMOS sensor with approx. 25.8 million photosites; 24.2 megapixels effective, 3:2 aspect ratio, fixed AA filter
       Image processor:  DIGIC 7
       A/D processing: 14-bit (Canon original RAW 2nd edition)
       Lens mount: Canon EF-M
       Focal length crop factor: 1.6x
       Image formats: Stills: JPEG (Exif 2.30 / DCF 2.0 compliant), .RAW, RAW+JPEG; Movies: MP4 [Video: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, Audio: MPEG-4 AAC-LC (stereo)]
       Image Sizes: Stills ““ 3:2 aspect:   6000 x 4000, 3984 x 2656, 2976 x 1984, 2400 x 1600; 4:3 aspect: 5328 x 4000, 3552 x 2664, 2656 x 1992, 2112 x 1600; 16:9 aspect: 6000 x 3368, 3984 x 2240, 2976 x 1680 2400 x 1344; 1:1 aspect: 4000 x 4000, 2656 x 2656, 1984 x 1984, 1600 x 1600; Movies: Full HD – 1920 x 1080 (59.94, 50, 29.97, 25, 23.976 fps), HD – 1280 x 720 (59.94, 50 fps), VGA – 640 x 480 (29.97, 25 fps)
       Image Stabilisation: Lens based
       Dust removal: EOS integrated cleaning system
       Shutter (speed range): Electronically controlled focal-place shutter (30 – 1/4000 sec. plus Bulb)
       Exposure Compensation: +/- 3EV in 1/3EV 3 steps
       Exposure bracketing: 3 shots, +/- 2 EV, 1/3-stop increments (can be used together with Exposure Compensation)
       Other bracketing options: Flash (with compatible external flash)
       Self-timer: 2 or 10 seconds delay
       Intervalometer: Time-Lapse Movie Mode
       Focus system: Dual Pixel CMOS AF System with 20 phase detection pixels built onto imaging sensor; max. 49 AF points selectable  
       Focus modes: One-Shot AF and Servo AF plus face and subject tracking via automatic recognition/ manual selection via touchscreen; auto selection, Smooth Zone AF: Manual zone selection, Touch focusing
       Exposure metering:  Evaluative metering (384 zones), Partial metering at centre (approx. 10% of Live View Screen), Centre-weighted and Spot metering (approx. 2% of Live View Screen) patterns
       Shooting modes: Scene Intelligent Auto, Hybrid Auto, Creative Assist, SCN, Creative Filters (Grainy B/W, Soft Focus, Fish-eye Effect, Art bold effect, Water
       Scene presets: Self-Portrait, Portrait, Landscape, Close-up, Sports, Food, Panning, Handheld Night Scene, HDR Backlight Control
       Picture Style modes: Auto, Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Fine Detail, Neutral, Faithful, Monochrome, User Defined (x3)
       Image processing: Highlight Tone Priority, Auto Lighting Optimiser (4 settings), Long exposure noise reduction, High ISO speed noise reduction (4 settings + Multi Shot NR), Lens peripheral illumination correction, Chromatic aberration correction, Diffraction correction,
       Colour space options: sRGB
       ISO range: Auto (100 – 25600), 100 – 25600 in 1/3 stop increments, Movie: Auto (100 – 6400), 100 – 12800 in 1/3-stop increments
       White balance: AWB, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten light, White
       Fluorescent light, Flash, Custom, Colour Temperature (100 Kelvin increments); White balance compensation: +/-9 levels Blue/Amber or Magenta/ Green
       Flash: Pop-up flash, GN 5, maximum coverage at approx. 15mm, recycle time Approx. 5 seconds, X-sync at 1/200 sec.
       Flash modes: Auto (E-TTL II), Manual Flash On/Off (3 flash power output settings); red-eye reduction is available
       Flash exposure adjustment: +/- 2 EV in 1/3 increments
       Sequence shooting: Max. 6.1 frames/sec.; 4 fps with AF/AE  
       Buffer capacity: 89 JPEG, 21 CR2.RAW
       Storage Media: SD, SDHC, SDXC cards (UHS-I compatible)
       Viewfinder: None
       LCD monitor: Tiltable (180 degrees up) 3-inch ClearView II Touchscreen LCD (TFT). 3:2 aspect ratio. Approx. 1,040,000 dots.  
       Playback functions: Single image with information (toggle up to 8 options), Single image, Index display (6/12/42/110 images), Jump Display (1/10/100 image, by shot date, by rating), 2x – 10x playback zoom, metadata tagging (copyright, image rating), brightness/ RGB histogram, rotate, protect, erase
       Interface terminals: High-speed USB2.0 (Mini USB connector), HDMI (Micro Type D)
       Wi-Fi function: (IEEE802.11b/g/n), (2.4 GHz only, 1-11 ch), with Dynamic NFC support, Bluetooth  4.1 low energy technology)
       Power supply: LP-E12 rechargeable Li-ion Battery Pack; CIPA rated for approx. 295 shots/charge (ECO mode approx. 410 shots/charge)
       Dimensions (wxhxd): 108.2 x 67.1 x 35.1 mm
       Weight: 302 grams with battery and card

       Distributor: Canon Australia; 1800 021 167;



       Based on JPEG files taken with the EF-M 15″“45mm f/3.5″“6.3 IS STM lens.


       Based on CR2.RAW files converted into 16-bit TIFF format with Adobe Camera Raw.






       Auto white balance   with incandescent lighting.


      Auto white balance   with fluorescent lighting.


      Auto white balance with warm-toned LED lighting.


      Auto white balance with flash lighting.


      ISO 100, 40mm focal length, 30 second exposure at f/6.3.


      ISO 400, 40mm focal length, 10 second exposure at f/6.3.


      ISO 1600, 40mm focal length, 6 second exposure at f/7.1.


      ISO 6400, 40mm focal length, 3.2 second exposure at f/8.


      ISO 12800, 40mm focal length, 1.3 second exposure at f/9.


      ISO 25600, 40mm focal length, 1/2 second exposure at f/7.1.


      Flash exposure at ISO 100; 45mm focal length, 1/60 second at f/6.3.


      Flash exposure at ISO 400; 45mm focal length, 1/60 second at f/6.3.


      Flash exposure at ISO 1600; 45mm focal length, 1/60 second at f/6.3.


      Flash exposure at ISO 6400; 45mm focal length, 1/60 second at f/6.3.


      Flash exposure at ISO 28100; 45mm focal length, 1/60 second at f/6.3.


      Flash exposure at ISO 25600; 45mm focal length, 1/80 second at f/8.


      ISO 100, 15mm focal length, 1/500 second exposure at f/10.


      ISO 100, 45mm focal length, 1/500 second exposure at f/9.


      Close-up at 15mm focal length, ISO 100, 1/1600 second exposure at f/3.5.


      Close-up at 45mm focal length, ISO 100, 1/640 second exposure at f/6.3.


      Strong backlighting, 16mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/4000 second exposure at f/5.6.


      23mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/2000 second exposure at f/5.6.


      45mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/3200 second exposure at f/6.3.


      16mm focal length, ISO 800, 1/250 second exposure at f/3.5


      45mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/500 second exposure at f/6.3.


      30mm focal length, ISO 1250,  1/125 second exposure at f/5.6.



      45mm focal length, ISO 100, 1/80 second exposure at f/6.3.


      20mm focal length, ISO 100, 1/500 second exposure at f/6.3.


      45mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/320 second exposure at f/6.3.


      45mm focal length, ISO 100, 1/1600 second exposure at f/9.


      45mm focal length, ISO 200, 1/2000 second exposure at f/6.3.


      Still frame from Full HD 1080 video clip taken at 50p.


      Still frame from Full HD 1080 video clip taken at 25p.


      Still frame from   HD 720 video clip taken at 50p.


       Still frame from VGA video clip taken at 25p.


      RRP: AU$869; US$600 with EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 IS STM lens

      • Build: 8.5
      • Ease of use: 8.6
      • Autofocusing: 8.6
      • Still image quality JPEG: 8.4
      • Still image quality RAW: 8.8
      • Video quality: 8.6