Steve's Conclusion

Steve's SnapShot

  • 18-Megapixel APS-C CMOS Imaging Sensor
  • 3.0-Inch, 460k dot LCD Screen
  • DIGIC 4 image processor
  • Canon EF/EF-S Mount
  • Pop-up flash unit
  • 9-Point AF system
  • 63-zone Dual Layer Metering system
  • Scene Intelligent Auto mode
  • Full 1080p HD video recording
  • Live View shooting
  • 3fps Continuous shooting
  • Works with all EF and EF-S lenses
  • Rechargeable Li-Ion battery
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card compatible
  • All shooting modes produce accurate exposures and overall pleasing images
  • Live View shooting allows for compact-like point-n-shoot capabilities
  • Good overall performance
  • Great overall image quality
  • Pop-up flash is always ready if you need it
  • Large 3.0-inch LCD is easy to see in most lighting conditions
  • Captures great Full 1080p HD videos
  • Compatible with all EF and EF-S lenses
  • Excellent Battery Life
  • Hot Shoe allows for additional power from an external flash unit
  • High Speed USB and HDMI output
  • Competitively priced
  • Lacking the versatile and useful convenience features like WiFi
  • No continuous AF shooting videos
  • LCD does not tilt or swivel
  • Only 1 command dial on the camera body
  • No external audio input
  • No built-in Image Stabilization
Timing Test Results
  • Power up to first image captured = 0.9 seconds
  • Shutter lag when prefocused = less than 1/10 of a second
  • Shutter lag with autofocus = approx. 1/2 to 3/10 of a second
  • Shot to shot delay wo/flash = 1/2 of a second
  • Shot to shot delay w/flash = 7/10 fo a second
  • Sequential burst = 3.03fps
  • Sequential flash burst = 2.08fps
  • All of our tests were completed using a Sony 94MB/s UHS-1 32GB SDHC memory card, Program mode, ISO auto, Flash off and all other settings at the factory defaults unless noted otherwise.
Bottom Line
The Canon EOS T5 is a compact and affordable entry-level dSLR. Only featuring the basics of what a camera needs, it performs well where it counts, and is a simple camera to use; making it great for anyone that wants to explore photography.
Pick This Up If...
You are looking for an affordable way to get into the hobby of photography or anyone that is looking to upgrade from a compact camera to something more powerful with much better quality and performance, without breaking the bank.
The Canon EOS T5 is their newest and most affordable dSLR model. For a dSLR the T5 is very compact and easy to carry. The camera sports an 18-Megapixel APS-C sized CMOS imaging sensor, DIGIC 4 image processor, Live View shooting, Full 1080p HD video capture, 9-point AF system and 3.0-inch LCD screen; keeping it very simple, the perfect camera for anyone just learning photography or ready to step up to a dSLR for the first time.

Using Canon's EF/EF-S mount system, the camera works with all of Canon's EF and EF-S lenses, giving you a selection that is second to none. You will have no problem finding the specific lens for whatever shooting situation that you will encounter. The camera kit includes an 18-55mm IS II lens to get you started.

Canon's EOS T5 has been designed to be one of the simplest dSLRs on the market to operate. The mode dial is simple and features all of the shooting modes you'd expect to find, so there is no searching menus to find specific shooting programs. These modes range from full Auto to Full manual with all the scene and video shooting modes in between.

The other controls on the camera may look intimidating at first if you are not used to this style camera, but you will soon find that they are very simple, and the camera could actually use a few more options once you get the hang of it. To help keep the camera compact, there is not a small LCD info panel on top of the camera, but the large 3.0-inch LCD will show all of the same information and is much easier to read. The only thing missing that Canon should have included is the OVF eye sensor. This sensor, which is on many of their other dSLRs, turns the LCD screen off when the camera is raised to your eye. With the T5, the LCD turns off when the shutter release is half pressed, which can be bothersome while shooting.

Outside of the on-body controls, handling the camera is very easy. Its compact size makes it easier for small hands to handle, but it is still plenty big enough for anyone with large hands as well. Rubber hand grips give the confidence to wield it with certainty in most shooting conditions, even with just one hand. The built-in OVF shows you a good estimation of what you are going to capture composition wise, but you will need to know your settings to know how your exposures will come out. It shows approx. 95% of the coverage area while a transparent LCD overlay shows the AF points and shooting information.

Composing and viewing your images can also be accomplished on the 3.0-inch, 460k dot LCD screen. The screen features adjustable brightness that allows it to be seen in most lighting conditions. Shooting with the LCD in Live View mode gives you the full 100% field of view and demonstrates real-time exposure on the screen, so you can see what you will capture ahead of time. The drawback here is the AF system, which is much slower than shooting through the OVF.

Performance from the T5 is good for an entry-level dSLR. When turning on the camera, it is able to capture its first image in just under 1 second. Its shutter lag is almost non-existent falling in less than 1/10 of a second. The AF system performed well when using the OVF, averaging between 2/10 and 3/10 of a second on a variety of zoom lengths and lighting conditions. Single shot mode allows for 2fps image capture, or a delay of approx. 1/2 second between frames. Raising the built-in flash slows the camera slightly, but the 7/10 of a second between shots is surprising. The T5 only features one continuous shooting mode, which gave us 3.03fps without the flash, and 2.08fps when shooting with the flash. All of our tests were completed using a Sony 94MB/s UHS-1 32GB SDHC memory card, Program mode, ISO auto, Flash off and all other settings at the factory defaults.

Looking at our outdoor image samples, the camera provides us with an excellent exposure and vivid colors. The images are sharp and clear, and although Canon has kept the camera simple, leaving out many of the extras, they did not sacrifice where it really matters. In some of the high contrast areas, we did see some aberrations that were a little distracting when viewing the images at 100%. These could also be noticeable in large prints. We tested the T5 with the 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens that Canon sent with the camera. This lens provides more versatility and zoom range than the standard kit 18-55mm kit lens.

Our indoor sample images give us rich, detailed image that is sharp from edge to edge. Noise levels have been kept under control very well throughout the ISO range, with only ISO 3200 and ISO 6400 showing unacceptable amounts of noise. This is excellent overall image quality for an entry-level dSLR or ILC, especially one with this price tag. When shooting indoors, or any other low-light situation, Canon has included an automatic pop-up flash unit with the T5. This compact flash unit has a range of up to 30ft. at ISO 100, allowing you to use it in most indoor situations, as well as a fill flash in harsh lighting without you having to be incredibly close to your subjects. If this flash is not enough, the camera's hot shoe allows you to use any of Canon's external Speedlite flash units that provide amazing amounts of power and versatility to your camera.

Shooting portraits can be a little more difficult than normal at first if you are used to using a compact camera with face detection. The T5 does have face detection as feature but only if you are shooting in Live View mode. Even then, the AF and Face Detection is slow and you will spend a lot of time waiting on the camera to focus. Your best bet is to get used to focusing through the OVF on your subjects' faces and capturing your images that way, especially if you are shooting subjects that are on the move. Our portrait samples came out very well, all focused via the OVF. The images are sharp and show a ton of detail in face and eyes that really help draw you in.

Shooting movies with the T5 allows for a great deal of creativity. You will find more options and abilities compared to a compact digicam. The one biggest difference, however, is that the T5 does not feature a continuous AF mode for shooting video. This is a feature that is found on most compacts, ILC's and some higher end dSLRs. This takes away the ease of following a moving subject while recording, but it is still possible manually. Our sample videos came out very well, capturing smooth, vivid videos that play back well on all medias. The built-in microphone performed better than we are used to, compared to a compact digicam. You can still hear the background noises in our samples, but they do not take over and block everything else out. If more advanced video control is a must for you, then you will want to look to a higher level camera such as the EOS 70D.

Powering the T5 is a 7.4V, 860mAh (LP-E10) rechargeable Li-ion battery. This powerful battery has been designed to allow the camera to capture up to 600 images on a single charge while using the OVF. This number does drop a little when shooting with the flash, and will drop quickly while shooting via Live View. During our testing we were able to capture over 200 images, only shooting slightly with the LCD, as well as capturing several short videos on a single charge without the battery icon even showing that the battery is getting low. This excellent battery life is great for a full day of shooting, but can also bring you to forget to charge it. With the included quick charger, it is easy to keep your battery and a spare charged and on hand at all times.

Bottom Line - The Canon EOS T5 is a baseline entry-level dSLR that surpassed our expectations on image quality. Canon has given it a great image sensor and processor but left out all of the extras to keep the price down. The performance was also good, but it does not even come close to what some the entry level ILC's can produce. With a MSRP of US $549.99 for the kit with the 18-55mm lens, this is definitely a bargain if you can live without the extras.

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