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Canon EOS 700D/Rebel T5i In-Depth Review

June 2013 | By Amadou Diallo, Andy Westlake


Review based on a production Canon EOS 700D running firmware 1.1.1

June 2013: The Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i replaces the very short-lived Canon EOS 650D / T4i but is almost indistinguishable from it in terms of design, operation and specification. Our tests have found the image quality and performance of both cameras to be identical and they use the same batteries and accessories as well. Accordingly, this review is a very slightly modified version of the EOS 650 review we posted in the summer of 2012. We've retained product images of the EOS 650D where there's no meaningful change in design, and except where indicated, any comments in the body of this review which reference the Canon EOS 650D / T4i are equally relevant to the Canon EOS 700D / T5i and vis-versa.

The Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i is the company's latest addition to its novice-oriented 'Rebel' series. With more than two decades of continuous success in its film and digital incarnations, these little SLRs have been improved and refined to the point that Canon's biggest challenge seems to be finding new ways to distinguish its updated models. Place the new EOS 700D / Rebel T5i alongside its predecessor the EOS 650D and the differences are so minimal to be of little real importance.

Differences compared to EOS 650D

  • Real-time preview of Creative Filters in Live View mode
  • Redesigned new mode dial that turns 360 degrees
  • New 'upmarket' textured body finish.

As such, we're not going to waste much time in this review discussing the 700D alongside the 650D. As noted above, much of the substance of this review is adapted from our earlier coverage of its predecessor anyway. The EOS 700D replaces the short-lived EOS 650D but the EOS 600D lives on in the overall lineup, to effectively drop down a notch to the position currently occupied by the EOS 550D / Rebel T2i, which will be discontinued. So long, EOS 650D. We hardly knew you. We've known fruit flies live longer.

Canon EOS 700D / Rebel T5i key features

  • 18MP APS-C 'Hybrid CMOS' sensor
  • Phase detection AF from imaging sensor for Live View and Video
  • Continuous autofocus in movie mode with subject tracking
  • 14-bit DIGIC 5 processor
  • ISO 100-12800 standard, 25600 expanded
  • 5 fps continuous shooting
  • 9 point AF system, all sensors cross type, central sensor F2.8 (from 60D)
  • 63 zone iFCL metering
  • 1080p30 video recording with built-in stereo mics
  • 1.04m dot 3:2 touch-sensitive vari-angle ClearView II LCD (capacitive type, multi-touch support)

The 700D's headline specifications - 18MP CMOS sensor, 9-point AF sensor, 3:2 flip-out 1.04m dot screen are all familiar from the EOS 600D / Rebel T3i. Look a bit closer, however, and improvements have been made in each of these areas, with an eye both to more seasoned users who demand SLR performance and compact camera upgraders who want a familiar feeling interface.

It is largely because of the rise of large sensor mirrorless models that in today's market an entry-level DSLR must offer more than just high image quality to entice compact camera upgraders. In the age of YouTube, quick and easy access to video recording capability is a must. And for users that are far more familiar with composing via an LCD screen than a viewfinder, live view performance is of no small concern. Of course the camera must still offer users a path to a more traditional DSLR-like experience, without which, they would be hard pressed to resist the temptation of a physically smaller 'mirrorless' camera.

The EOS 650D was Canon's attempt to meet these challenges head on, with features aimed at improving its live view and video performance, which have been carried into the EOS 700D. One of the most noteworthy of these is the ability to offer continuous AF tracking while recording movies.

This is made possible by Canon's 'Hybrid CMOS' sensor that includes pixels dedicated to phase detection autofocus. The Hybrid AF system uses these to quickly set the lens to roughly the correct distance, then uses contrast detection AF to fine-tune focus. In theory, this should provide faster and more certain focusing for live view and video shooting compared to Canon models which rely on CDAF alone. You can read a more detailed explanation of this technology and see it in action on the AF performance page of the EOS 650D review.

The EOS 700D also features a touchscreen. This is of the capacitive (contact sensitive) rather than resistive (pressure sensitive) type, behaving like that of a typical smartphone. In Live View and Movie modes the screen can be used to specify the point of focus and (optionally) release the shutter. It also supports iPhone-like multi-touch and gestures. The rear screen has been redesigned with no air gap between the display and cover glass in an attempt to reduce reflections and improve visibility in bright light. There's also an anti-smudge coating which aims to reduce the impact of its newfound touch-sensitivity.

Other features of note

The EOS 700D uses Canon's DIGIC 5 processor (as seen in the S100 and G1 X compacts), which allows it to shoot at a maximum ISO sensitivity of 12,800 (25,600 extended), and allows lens-specific corrections for chromatic aberration and vignetting in the camera's JPEG processing. The 'conventional' autofocus system for eye-level shooting is borrowed from the EOS 60D, and uses nine focus points which are now all cross-type, with the center point offering additional accuracy with fast lenses.

The camera also has a built-in stereo microphone to provide sound for video, while retaining an external microphone input. The 'HDR Backlight' and 'Handheld Night Scene', modes combine multiple exposures to give a final processed image. A four-exposure 'Multi Shot Noise Reduction' setting is also available in the PASM modes.

Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens

Announced alongside the EOS 700D is the EF-S 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 IS STM kit lens. With the camera itself offering little to distinguish itself from the EOS 650D, the option to buy the 700D with the new, stepper-motor-driven 18-55mm STM lens stands out as its main attraction. The lens offers better movie focusing and up to four stops of image stabilization, along with a close focusing distance of 0.25m and a circular seven-bladed aperture. An internal focus design means the lens does not extend when focusing. Optical performance remains essentially on par with its non-STM EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II cousin, however, as you can see in our lens comparison tool.

The STM designation is of particular interest to video shooters as it has the potential for quiet autofocus and improved AF speed. Those familiar with using just about any camcorder are accustomed to smooth and reasonably accurate autofocus, while the average SLR focuses slowly (indeed previous Rebels only focused when prompted by the user). Because an SLR can't use its phase-detect sensor while in Live View and video modes, the camera is usually left to struggle with contrast-detect autofocus. And, because non-STM lenses aren't designed with this focus method or for this purpose, the results were often jerky shifts in focus with focus motor noise audible on the video's sound track. Older Rebels were even known to gain up exposure during video if you asked them to focus.

The 700D is also available bundled with the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, which offers an extended zoom range at a higher price. Canon's only other SLR lens with an STM motor is the EF 40mm F2.8 pancake. All are designed to take full advantage of the Hybrid AF system found in the EOS 650D, 700D and 100D, with quiet autofocus, helpful when shooting video, and full time manual focus.

The EOS 700D's Hybrid AF system is designed to work optimally with Canon's three-lens STM lineup which consists of an 18-55mm, 18-135mm and fixed 40mm pancake lens.
Compared to the previous EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II lens, the STM version is slightly longer to accommodate the internal focus system, and has a 'proper' manual focus ring at the front of the barrel that drive the focus group electronically. As with the older design it's physically shortest in the middle of its zoom range, and extends on zooming either to 18mm or 55mm (click here for a comparison at 55mm).

The STM focus motor is extremely quiet, indeed inaudible in video recording and, when using the optical viewfinder, impressively fast, offering a noticeable improvement over its predecessor. But switch the camera to live view and, just like the 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, it slows down significantly. This is a unfortunate - Canon's live view AF system still distinctly lags behind the competition.

The filter thread on the STM lens remains 58mm. The inner-focus design means it doesn't rotate on autofocus, and allows the use of an optional petal-type lens hood rather (than the relatively ineffective bowl-type hood of its predecessor). As we'd expect at this level, the lens mount is plastic. This is an EF-S, lens so only fits on Canon's APS-C cameras.


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2013 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 12
RyanBoston
By RyanBoston (5 days ago)

How is it that the 550D scores higher than this camera? Even in the compare to score section, raw scores higher on the 550D. I find it weird that a camera 3 generations newer scores worst.

My girlfriend sold her 550D and wants a new touchscreen Canon, but it feels like the quality has not moved ahead in years.

0 upvotes
Kishore Pratap Sanghvi
By Kishore Pratap Sanghvi (3 months ago)

I am graduating from a bridge camera to a DSLR. Have been a hobby photographer for many years primarily doing landscape photography but I do it only when on a vacation that would be twice a year. I was a little confused whether to buy a Canon 700D or a Nikon D5300. I have always used Canon cameras before and after going thru many reviews comparing the two cameras I am not wiser. I also understand that once one buys a DSLR one continues to buy cameras of that family so that it can save money on lenses. Assuming that the quality of photos is not much different in the two cameras is the touch screen in 700D so useful that I should buy a Canon or the WIFI-GPS so important in the Nikon. As there anything else that help me decide between the two. Your advice would be most helpful.Tx. You can reply directly on my mail - drkpsanghvi@gmail.com

0 upvotes
ravi pratap
By ravi pratap (3 months ago)

since u have been using canon , it is better to go for 700d as u r familiar with canon system and picture style and may have canon lenses with you. i find canon 700d is nice cam with cleaner sharper image with better color than nikon.

0 upvotes
zdenek nostalgig
By zdenek nostalgig (3 months ago)

Nikon always have bean a crap for landscapes...I mean in case we talking about cheaper model DSLRs. Nikons green color is absolute joke and ISO stuck ....stay with canon...Nikon is great for moving objects r portraits...but as a landscape photographer I will never ever go for Nikon unless I can buy D4.

0 upvotes
ravi pratap
By ravi pratap (4 months ago)

canon 600d or 700d ?
i have been carefully seeing 1000s of photos taken by 600d and 700d on flickr and other review sites including this top cam site, in review images 600d looks better on most parameters notably sharpness and color but on flickr photos 600d pix looks a bit less sharp to 700d pix which is more evident on night landscapes shots.
Especially a few shots on 700d plus canon 18-135 of hongkong night landscape is very sharp with great color...which none of nikon, sony or pantex match...i m in dilemma , can the 600d with 18-135 canon match 700d?
experts are requested to clear the doubt, thanks!

0 upvotes
tophy42
By tophy42 (4 months ago)

its very great camera and the new design is beautiful
my bro buy one yesterday and till this moment never stopped shooting

Really great product

0 upvotes
Neo111
By Neo111 (8 months ago)

An outstanding review as usual. I just wish camera makers would let cameras be cameras and camcorders be camcorders. All I want is a camera. Take away the video mode gubbins and we would see a big drop in price. I can buy a pocket camcorder if I need urgent video. Why stick it in a camera at all? Better buffers could be included and also better features by knocking out the video stuff. Well, that's what I think anyway.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
6 upvotes
rinkos
By rinkos (8 months ago)

blah blah blah ..cannon stays cannon ..all the new shiny freaks will rush on buying a camera that is basically the same as the one they had 3 years ago .
no true innovation from cannon for a long while now .

just for once i wish they would atleast try to innovate something new

2 upvotes
Dave Smith Trelawnyd
By Dave Smith Trelawnyd (8 months ago)

A nice camera that replaced my 600D after it ingested yellow steam on a volcano!
The camera does everything I ask of it including astro photography, and the touch screen is used far more than I thought it would be, all in all an excellent camera.

0 upvotes
Pepe Le Pew
By Pepe Le Pew (10 months ago)

The Rebel series are getting worse and worse every year

3 upvotes
PDBreach
By PDBreach (8 months ago)

How so? This is an upgrade..

0 upvotes
cor ela d obe x6Ps6
By cor ela d obe x6Ps6 (7 months ago)

@pepe... then, what is the best DSLR?

1 upvote
Total comments: 12