Canon Unveils the Speedlite EL-5, a First-Ever Flash for EOS R Cameras

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Owners of Canon’s EOS R mirrorless cameras might really like the Speedlite EL-5 portable flash from the same brand.

Canon has now announced the release of this powerful external device, which is the first of its kind for the Multi-Function Shoe that Canon’s EOS R mirrorless models have.

The Speedlite EL-5 has quite a few robust features going for it. Among these is an LP-EL rechargeable Lithium-ion battery that lets the Speedlite fire off 350 full-power flashes and 95 flashes in a row on one charge. These can be done with a recycle time that ranges from 0.1 to 1.2 seconds between flashes, depending on the settings used.

The EL-5 also uses a 2.4GHz wireless radio transmission for timing communication during shooting sessions. It can be triggered wirelessly and also be used to trigger up to 15 flash units wirelessly within a range of as many as 98 feet, or 29.9 meters.

The Speedlite also comes with a maximum guide number of 197’ for ISO 100 and 200mm. Manual power can be adjusted from 1/1 to 1/1024 and usability for zoom ranges of 24-200mm. This can be further lowered to 14mm if using the built-in diffuser panel. The flash also has plenty of steps for angle articulation.

Another cool feature is a built-in modeling lamp that lets users visualize how their flash lighting will spread across a subject before actively using it.

The Speedlite EL-5 also comes with a dust and moisture-resistant body that features a joystick, dial, several key buttons and a high-definition LCD screen as its main in-body controls, besides the controls that can be applied to it from the cameras it’s mounted to.

Speaking of compatible cameras, this portable flash is specifically designed for usability with the Multi-Function Shoe on Canon’s EOS R camera models such as the EOS R3, EOS R6 Mark II, EOS R7 and EOS R10 among others.

With these cameras, users can directly control settings between the two devices or they can take advantage of another handy feature. This is Canon’s Camera Connect app, which can be downloaded to smartphones and used to manipulate both the EL-5 and its attached EOS camera.

According to Bob Davis, a photographer representing Canon, “The new Canon Speedlite EL-5 flash will give that magical kiss of light that brings a picture to life and illuminates your creative vision,”

If you’re a Canon EOS R user and want a flash that’s truly built for your specific camera type, the Speedlite EL-5 will be hitting the market as of March 2023, but it’s available for preorder now at $399.

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Shotkit Journalist, Writer & Reviewer

Stephan Jukic is a technology and photography journalist and experimental photographer who spends his time living in both Canada and Mexico. He loves cross-cultural street photo exploration and creating fine art photo compositions.

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