Canon EOS R3 gets rumored launch date, but when will it be available to buy?

Canon EOS R3
(Image credit: Canon)

The long-awaited Canon EOS R3 has been given a rumored launch date, six months on from its 'development announcement' in February. But the current signs suggest that the camera could be in short supply, even when it does finally land.

A new post from Canon Rumors suggests we'll see the grand unveiling of the full-frame sports camera on September 14, which is just under three weeks away. 

The site isn't completely confident about that precise date, stating there "are now a few things lining up that seem to point to an announcement on or around September 14". But it's pretty certain that the full launch is now imminent.

We did previously see rumors, which turned out to be incorrect, that the full Canon EOS R3 launch would happen in late June. But a September launch has been expected for a while now, and it would fit the timescale we saw for the Canon EOS R5 – that camera received a 'development announcement' in February 2020, before becoming available to buy in July 2020.

The big question, though, is whether or not the Canon EOS R3 will be available to buy from September 14, or simply open for pre-orders. There's no concrete evidence on this either way, but if we take a temperature reading from Canon's lenses, the signs aren't looking great for immediate availability.

Canon has announced four mirrorless camera lenses this year: the Canon RF 14-35mm f/4 L IS RF, RF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM, RF 400mm f/2.8L IS USM Lens and RF 600mm f/4L IS USM Lens. Despite being announced four months ago (or two months, in the case of the RF 14-35 f/4 L IS RF), none of those lenses are available to buy in the UK and only one is in stock in Canon's US store.

We've asked Canon for an update on the availability of those lenses and will update this story when we hear back. Lenses do, of course, use different components to camera bodies and this doesn't necessarily have repercussions for the availability of the Canon EOS R3. But other camera manufacturers, including Sony, have seen both camera launches and stock delayed this year due to the knock-on effects of the pandemic. 

Analysis: The chips are down, but shipments are steady    

The rear screen of the Canon EOS R3 showing a skateboarder at the Olympics

(Image credit: Atiba Jefferson / Canon)

In the past few months, we've seen the Sony ZV-E10 camera launch postponed due to "the availability status for certain parts", as Sony told us, and Sony Japan also release a statement about delays to Sony A7S III stock "due to production reasons".

Rumors also recently suggested that the long-awaited Sony A7 IV has had its released date pushed back from September to late October, and that "supplies will be limited during the first months".

Clearly, there are a complex set of factors involved here and the situation will have different nuances for each manufacturer. Also, according to CIPA data, camera shipments did remain relatively steady up until June this year, despite the impact of the pandemic and chip shortages.

But it doesn't seem unreasonable to speculate that Canon originally planned to fully launch the Canon EOS R3 in time for the Olympics in July, where a handful of early samples were spotted in the wild.

And given the lack of availability of many Canon RF lenses, plus the the ongoing impact of the chip shortages on the rest of consumer tech, it would be surprising if the Canon EOS R3 was available in great numbers from that rumored September 14 launch date.

Then again, given that the EOS R3 is rumored to have a price tag in the $6,000 ballpark (which would likely equate to around £6,000 / AU$9,250), perhaps that won't be a major issue, despite it being one of the most exciting cameras of the year.

Mark Wilson
Senior news editor

Mark is TechRadar's Senior news editor. Having worked in tech journalism for a ludicrous 17 years, Mark is now attempting to break the world record for the number of camera bags hoarded by one person. He was previously Cameras Editor at both TechRadar and Trusted Reviews, Acting editor on, as well as Features editor and Reviews editor on Stuff magazine. As a freelancer, he's contributed to titles including The Sunday Times, FourFourTwo and Arena. And in a former life, he also won The Daily Telegraph's Young Sportswriter of the Year. But that was before he discovered the strange joys of getting up at 4am for a photo shoot in London's Square Mile.