Monday, 17 December 2012

Canon EOS Rebel T2i 18 MP CMOS APS-C Sensor DIGIC 4 Imaging Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens + Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS Telephoto Zoom Lens Review

Incorporating Canon's Optical Image Stabilizer technology, this Canon 55-250mm telephoto zoom lens captures long distance, low-light shots far better than many comparable lenses, helping you photograph the far-off action of athletes or zoom in for an intimate portrait with a blurred background. The high-zoom-ratio lens is equivalent to a focal length of 88-400mm in the 35mm format (when used on Canon EOS cameras compatible with EF-S lenses). More significantly, the image stabilizer effect creates an equivalent shutter speed of roughly four stops faster than the same size lens without an image stabilizer. In other words, if the slowest shutter speed you can hold a 250mm lens steadily is normally 1/250th of a second, this Canon lens will let you hand-hold shutter speeds as slow as 1/15th of a second. The lens also boasts a UD-glass lens element to correct chromatic aberration to create excellent image quality throughout the zoom range. Delivering an excellent performance at an affordable price for all photographers, the 55-250mm lens carries a one-year warranty.

A Great Upgrade (coming from an XSI)
I just got this camera today (finally an available body only since I have no use for the kit lens) and I am awed. I had done a lot of research on this before buying it so I knew what to expect in terms of both the big upgrade issues as well as the little tweaks they have done, some of which turn out to be really terrific. If you are coming from another Canon the menus and interface will be second nature. Based on another very positive review just posted, coming from Nikon it's also an easy step. Here are some early observations:

The Best:
A huge bump in ISO. This was one of the two main reasons I upgraded from my trusty (and still good) XSI. I have made some test shots and despite going up to an 18 MP sensor the noise is not much of an issue and I shot several pics at ISO 3200 which look quite good. I then shot some in 6400 which did start to show some noise in the low light but still made for serviceable pictures. I am looking forward to seeing what it will do around a campfire at an upcoming camping trip with my daughter! My XSI despite a F/2.8 lens could not do much with that in the past.

The other main draw for me was video. I dream of being able to bring just one camera to, say, Disney and have it do double duty and I think this one may do it. So far, I have only shot a couple scenes in fairly low light and focus is a bit of a challenge but by zooming in and allowing the camera to come to focus before the shot it is manageable. I expect this to not be as much of an issue in brighter light. Be sure to enable auto focus during video in the menu - I suspect it is disabled by default due to the noise many lenses make with focusing as that would be recorded as well. I have two USM / "L" lenses so that should not be a problem for me but your milage may vary. I also plan to try some manual focusing. Keep in mind that video clips for full 1080P 30 FPS are limited to about 12 minutes - I worried about this a bit until I realized that when I edit my videos shots are rarely longer than 4 minutes (and of that I usually keep just 2 or less). That said, this camera is not the one to choose to record, say, a stage production. For that a dedicated video camera able to record an hour or more at a time is a must.

The Good:
Better Live View - Live view mode is now much more accessible and in more modes.

Sensor Size - 18 MP sensor is nice for cropping and taking full advantage of "L" glass if you have it. Other than that, this is not a major draw from my perspective. I would actually have preferred this be a 12 MP camera allowing low-noise great pics to, say, over 20000 ISO.

Memory Type - This camera uses SD type cards including the new ultrahigh capacity cards. I know it is a small matter but I like being able to use the cards I have rather than having to but some expensive CF cards (such as used by the 7D). Keep in mind that they recommend Class 6 or higher cards for video (I got a couple 16 GB Class 10 cards for about $40 each which should fit the bill). I'll use my older cards just for stills.

Stereo Mic Input - This allows the option of using a better mic than the built in mic. I may never take advantage of that but I suspect I will, actually. Of course, inclusion of a stereo mic would have been even better!

Misc - A lot of little things about this camera already impress me. For example, they moved the "no flash" setting on the main dial to right next to full auto and my most used setting "portrait" mode and away from the far end since they realized a lot of people use it (that's according to a video I saw online with a Canon employee). There are a lot of little touches like that which I have already noticed.

The Bad: (really not so bad in many ways)
The build quality is not 7D (which I have just handled at a store). The magnesium body on that bad boy just makes it feel very solid and by comparison the T2i does feel not cheap but does feel light. On the other hand less weight is good (especially at places like Disney) and this camera is appropriately being labeled a "baby 7D" in terms of sensor chip, etc. Of course, having an extra $1000 in your pocket (or not on your charge card) is another huge advantage over the 7D.

It is not a full frame camera. This means there is a "crop factor" due to the chip size which effectively multiplies by 1.6 the focal length of lens you are using (as compared to 35 mm film cameras or full-frame cameras like the 5D Mk II. Since I was coming from an XSI which of course is also a smaller sensor for me there is no transition to make here.

In summary, I am VERY pleased with this purchase and expect this to be my camera body until my ultimate camera is released (full frame, stereo mic, uses SD cards, useable ISO to >100,000 all for under $1000 - I know, I know this is a pipe dream now but an (old) kid can dream, can't he?)

UPDATE: I have had this camera for a couple weeks now and have had the opportunity to shoot hundreds of pictures and quite a few videos. I am still very impressed. Stills are great and the focusing is markedly improved over the XSI. The only blurry shots I get are when panning to follow my dogs running among trees - to the sensor the trees seem to be moving and are deemed the subject - stopping down the lens to increase DOF (or just taking a whole bunch of pictures) is the easy fix.

Now, regarding video. It is more challenging than I thought to use a DSLR camera for video. This is more an ergonomic issue with the form factor for the camera than any issue with the T2i itself. Video is of course composed by looking at the LCD screen and so the camera must be held out a bit - and with the weight of a good lens it gets pretty heavy in contrast to typical small camcorders of today. Thinking about it, modern video cameras have gotten to this stage of evolution after over 20 years (anyone remember the old VHS camcorders?), so I guess it is to be expected there would be a difference. Focus is not quick like it is with a good video camera but seems best achieved to me anyway with manual focus. The large, bright LCD screen helps in this regard. The quality of the resulting video is excellent. Although I don't see this as replacing my Sony HD video camera for day-to-day and holiday recording I do think that it will be useable to take the role of both still and video camera during an upcoming trip to Disney. I also suspect as I get more used to it that the ease of use will increase further and perhaps one day it will be my only video camera. Overall, this is a great product and I remain very pleased.

Click link below to learn more about Canon EOS Rebel T2i 18 MP CMOS APS-C Sensor DIGIC 4 Imaging Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens + Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS Telephoto Zoom Lens :

No comments:

Post a Comment