Canon celebrates 50 years making SLRs

Canon 400D
Canon has sold an average of 114 SLRs every hour - for 50 years

Canon is today celebrating the 50th anniversary of its SLR camera ranges. Canon launched its first single lens reflex camera, the Canon Reflex, way back in 1959 - the same year that the UK granted Cyprus its independence.

Since then, Canon says it has sold over 50 million SLRs - which averages out to around 114 SLRs sold every hour for 50 years.

The press release that Canon sent us this morning states that its first SLR camera went on sale in May of 1959. Now, if our understanding of the Gregorian calendar is sound, the 50th anniversary of that date won't be for another five months.

Still though, it's worth taking a look back at the last 50 years because whether the date is right or not, it can't be denied that Canon has been making some darn fine cameras for a long time.

The omnipresent EOS series was born in 1987 in the shape of the EOS 650, and incorporated the EF-series (Electro focus) lens system where the camera and lens communicated through electrical contacts instead of mechanically.

The Canon EOS series and EF lenses have proved popular with consumers, with more than 40 million EF lenses sold worldwide. The digital boom has seen 10 million of these produced in the last three years alone.

Here are some of the latest Canon DSLRs, reviewed and rated...

Last reviewed in 2006...

Canon EOS 30D

Canon EOS 20D

Canon EOS 350D

Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II

Canon EOS 5D

Last reviewed in 2007...

Canon EOS 40D

Canon EOS 1D Mark III

Canon EOS 400D

Last reviewed in 2008...

Canon EOS 50D

Canon EOS 450D

Canon EOS 1000D

James Rivington

James was part of the TechRadar editorial team for eight years up until 2015 and now works in a senior position for TR's parent company Future. An experienced Content Director with a demonstrated history of working in the media production industry. Skilled in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), E-commerce Optimization, Journalism, Digital Marketing, and Social Media. James can do it all.