It looks like the compact canon Rebel SL1 with full D-SLR capability has actually made it to the official European Canon website in its none US naming convention form. The significantly more compact size of their fully featured EOS 100D D-SLR might be just the thing to stop many of their once hardcore loyal customer base moving over to Sony NEX mirror-less camera's which Sony are making a killing on for their extremely convenient form factor and now proven image quality production.

I remember how there had been initially some talk of how mirror-less interchangeable lens cameras were supposed to have a lesser amount of imaging quality then mirrored D-SLR's, but the proof has been in the actual usage and results with many consumers realizing that mirror-less interchangeable could produce the same quality of images as a mirrored D-SLR if not better in some cases. 

I guess this is Canon also redeeming themselves for the flack they got for their attempt at mirror-less interchangeable via the EOS M which seemed to lack the kinds of comforts and speed loyal D-SLR users wanted from a camera that had interchangeable lenses, especially at the price that the EOS M was retailing at. It seems Sony were pretty much winning hands down in this segment with their NEX camera range.

Personally I'm inclined to think that the EOS 100D/Rebel SL1 is more of an exercise in vanity more than anything else, you could turn up to a shoot with a very capable NEX and vastly more compact camera which actually excels the capabilities and specifications of over half of the current full bodied Canon and Nikon D-SLR's, but you're still going to be looked at in a puzzled manner to maybe be asked "you're only shooting this with that thing?!". The 100D gives you that vastly more convenient compact form factor whilst allowing you to retain full D-SLR features as well as the appearance of using one. It's just a shame they weren't willing to push the boat out a little further in removing the mirror for the sake of taking out a further chunk of the bulk that has pretty much been proven to be a now unnecessary element just in how mirror-less interchangeable lens camera's have evolved with actual proven results as far as actual picture quality is concerned.

Whatever the case the EOS 100D is available to pre-order at the price point of £569 at some camera equipment outlets, which definitely undercuts the pricing on NEX-6 camera's by a significant margin for R.R.P. This is whilst also managing to rock better specs which also includes a touchscreen (which the NEX-6 doesn't have). In fact pricing wise the 100D is on a par with the most current NEX5N/R (possibly less in some cases depending where you buy from), although unlike the NEX camera range the screen on the soon to be released 100D is actually fixed and none articulating despite being a touchscreen.[official 100D specs here]



The 100D/Rebel SL1 is quite literally like a NEX-C3 camera in a canon body plus a mirror and built in viewfinder with touchscreen equipped with a BIOS that doesn't limit the APS-C sensor to just 16.1 megapixels... (...how to look more credibly professional?)



I'm more inclined to think that the 100D is targeted at mirror-less interchangeable users who use their interchangeable lens cameras professionally (as in 'pro' meaning to get paid to take pictures of stuff or use it as part of their job/work/purpose). No doubt a whole bunch of bloggers doing tech exhibitions would feel a little less out of place and less intimidated by those rocking full sized D-SLR's. Its targeted squarely at the enthusiast and pro's already accustomed to using DSLR's and mirror-less interchangables with propriety lenses aswell as canon lenses (might also possibly be the case that a larger sized DSLR for certain situations is just not a requirement and might be less convenient). I can also see the 100D maybe potentially tempting a few DSLR virgins from there mirror-less interchangables with the re-marketed niche of the reduced size. Although from what I could gather early canon DSLR's weren't too far off the 100D's form factor for height and width if not depth.

Canon don't really have anything to lose in bringing more people back into the Canon fold, and whether you like it or not Canon DSLR's are pretty much considered to be an industry standard in photography with instant recognition much in the way that Pioneer is to the DJ world these days.

The majority of "soccer moms" would no doubt stick to the mirror-less interchagebles using the smaller propriety lenses if not regular compacts. 

The last time I checked its near impossible to fit a NEX camera with an 18-55mm lens in my jeans pocket and you'd need a very big inside jacket pocket. Even with a 16mm pancake its still more than awkward to get in your trouser/jeans pocket, and even if you do manage to get it in there it would just look ridiculous. 

There are people who successfully take pictures for work related purposes/tasks using nothing but regular none changeable lens compact point and shoot camera's. Sure they might not be the greatest of pictures but it gets the job done for specific said tasks to only ever be able to produce very regular looking pictures for a professional purpose. There are people who use so called "pro" gear to the same lackluster effect despite again getting the function of task done.

There are people who use "pro" camera equipment purely for hobby photography that are able to produce better results then professionals in various types of professional photography fields. 

There are people who use "amateur" equipment in such ways that make pictures more interesting and a pleasure to view in a "professional" way but don't get paid for it.  

What's the definition of a "professional" camera? What is the dictionary definition of a "professional" (as in someone who gets paid for what they do regardless of actual ability and the standard of their work and the equipment they use). 

At the end of the day if what you have gets the photographic task you want done - the way you want it - whatever your requirements and demands of the equipment, whats the issue? The point at which it can't do that simply upgrade or get something that can within your means.

Is canon spying on Sony/Nikon? Ask yourself how long has the NEX-3/C3/F3 been available and how many places can you buy one? What does it take to take one apart? (It works both ways). Or for an influential electronics giant CEO to decide that they can't undo certain customer and potential employer perceptions of brand when it comes to "professional" photography in certain scenarios?




The only reason I'd move from the NEX-F3/repackaged and recycled research/mapping/lab equipment...

- is to have an integrated view finder (in being a tidy and robust solution that doesn't require fiddly and expensive add on's that are potentially more prone to breaking) to compliment a decent LCD screen for situations where shooting outdoors (like in sunny warm countries) makes it near impossible to see the LCD screen in order to more accurately assess more measured shots for focal depth and general composition.

- to get decent handling at ISO 100, I'm inclined to think that Sony cut the F3 off at the lowest of 200 due to possible issues with the kinds of images it maybe produced caused by hardware and software combination flaws for regular photography. It'd also be nice to have a higher ISO range just for the sake of it although for the main part I haven't really found much reason to frequently go above 3200 (sometimes 6400) yet. Who knows, I might take up astrophotography or suddenly become micro-biologist or quantum particle researcher? Night time surveillance?  (...highly unlikely)

- I've just realized how handy an IR sensor for a remote would be for many scenarios considering that Sony don't make official remote software available to the general public in order to control the NEX-F3 from a laptop/computer for things like time lapse photography or automated street mapping. (not that I'd ever need to use it for automated street mapping, and common sense would suggest that such a thing would exists just by sheer virtue of its hardware design and capability). However you can buy an IR remote for the purposes of time lapse photography. Not to mention the obvious of being able to take pictures without having to touch the camera and minimizing potential camera shake for certain types of shots. 


Without any kind of subtext intended...
 
I definitely wouldn't abandon the NEX range of cameras even if it does become some sort of complimentary camera to a main camera for certain situations where a full form factor camera might not be practical or might actually be an inconvenience (or maybe also when constantly having to swap out lenses is just not practical also). That and for the reasons of kind of having a soft spot for them in knowing just what they're capable of and what it could mean for the future of photography using SLR lenses. Generally though and given the price point you might be better off going with a Sony NEX-6 or NEX-7 as body only despite it not rocking an industry standard name or a touchscreen. Ideologies of brands and number naming conventions aside which seem to cause people to do some crazy shit like robots even when thats not the intention, in terms of pure specs, convenience and actual potential scope for taking a broad variety of pictures styles, the mirror-less NEX-6 (possibly even NEX-7 too depending on where you buy from and if you're lucky) appear to be the better options for the price point segment. That's assuming you're looking to downsize your gear by sticking with compact mirror-less interchangeable lens camera's and not looking to get full on nitty-gritty with a 60D or 7D (which you could potentially snag for the same price as the NEX-6 and NEX-7 respectively if you look hard enough). But more generally from the standpoint of specifications the NEX-6 and 7 are like vastly more compact versions of the 600D and 650/700D respectively although with slightly better specs and without mirrors. Which would I recommend? I wouldn't recommend any as such to just say compare hard and consider your needs against budget as they're all potentially very capable camera's from research thus far with overlapping potential uses to various degrees. 





 
My general opinions from research

Canon 100D/Rebel SL1 - very similar to the NEX-C3 and F3 for specs. but unlike the NEX-C3 and F3 the 100D has a touch screen as well as the standard closer to pro features of dedicated mode dials and settings buttons as well as a built in view finder. The 100D has a shutter speed of 1/4000 just like just like all the NEX camera's ISO ranges kind of look like this...

- 100 to 12800 - Canon 100D - has a built in view finder as well an LCD touchscreen
- 100 to 12800 - NEX-C3 - built  LCD screen only (option viewfinder with separate attachment) 
- 200 to 16000 - NEX-F3 - 
built  LCD screen only (option viewfinder with separate attachment)
- 100 to 25600 - 5N and most current 5R with top dial - touchscreen LCD only (option viewfinder with separate attachment)
- 100 to 25600 - 6 and 7 - has a built view finder as well an LCD screen

 
All the above mentioned are ideal if you want DSLR quality/style pictures without the bulk as a general walk around camera. 
 

Canon 600D - near the top end of entry level of Canon D-SLR's with 18 megapixels. Its only considered to be the beginner segment due what's available in the Canon D-SLR range. There's still plenty of actual scope for professional use and application (just not as much as some some of the other more pricier tricked out models. The NEX-6 is like a vastly more compact mirror-less version of this but with a slightly faster burst shooting capability but limited to 16.1 megapixels. Has a flip out twisting articulated screen. 1/4000 shutter speed.


Canon 650/700D - at the top end of the entry level of Canon D-SLR's. Its faster at shooting in consecutive burst mode for a longer before the buffer fills up. but still has an 18 megapixel APS-C sensor. Has the same ISO range as the 600D that tops out at 6400 auto and 12800 extended manual. The NEX-7 is like a vastly more compact version of this but with slightly better specs all round which includes a 24 megapixel APS-C sensor and much higher maximum ISO. Has a flip out twisting articulated screen. 1/4000 shutter speed.

Canon 60D - at this point we're getting into the beginnings of the mid range of the Canon D-SLR's. Faster burst rapid fire picture shooting for longer, extremely fast potential shutter speeds at 1/8000. Also has a flip out twisting articulating screen for easier shooting of video. Still has an APS-C sensor but is larger then the 600D and 650/700D.
   
Canon 7D - The mid range of the the mid range of Canon D-SLR's with APS-C sensor at 18 megapixels. One of the fastest of all the entire current Canon D-SLR's range with indefinite rapid machine gun like shutter burst picture taking mode (or at least till the battery runs out when shooting in JPG only). Its speed is comparable to the current top of end 1D. Also has a very fast AF system with comprehensive coverage of 19 points. Excellent for shooting sports and wildlife as well as the more regular stuff. As such it doesn't use SD cards to require high speed Compact flash in order to get the speeds. The faster the CF card the faster its able to shoot. ISO 100 to 6400 auto and 12800 extended. 1/8000 shutter speed. Has a none flip out fixed screen which would no doubt add to its robustness but makes it less convenient for shooting video (although it can actually record hi-def 1080p/i video). I guess the faster more durable mechanics required to make it last sort of justifies the larger body in this case.

 Canon 6D - The upper end of the mid range DSLR. slower then the 7D but on a par with the 60D for speed. Its main selling point is the fact it has a full frame 35mm sensor instead of an APS-C with an ISO that get goes from 100 to 12800 and 25600 extended. The full frame sensor allows for vastly lower noise pictures in low light conditions than APS-C sensors (a larger sensor has more of an impact on allowing for better pictures in low light conditions with less noise then just having a higher ISO capability alone. Larger sensor = being able to register more light input data).

Canon 5D Mk III - the first rung of the Canon DSLR top end. what I'd go for if money was no object or could get one for free. This also has a full frame 35mm sensor. Not as fast as the 7D. The 7D is what I'd go for if I was looking to go full serious DSLR within a limited budget constraint. This thing is big enough as it is, but the two models above this are like mammoth camera's with built in battery hand grips. The 1D being able to shoot super fast for long periods and the other 1D variant does crazy super high res 4K video.