Canon EOS 550D (Rebel T2i / Kiss X4 Digital) In-depth review
Top of camera controls
The controls on the top of the EOS 550D are identical to the EOS 500D and the EOS 450D before it. There are a couple of design changes, but they're subtle - the mode dial has switched back to black (the EOS 500D's is silver) and has more pronounced knurling, the ISO button sits inside an indentation (presumably to make it easier to find without looking), and there's a slightly different shape to the angled 'finger rest' that the shutter release sits on.
As normal the control dial is used to change settings when buttons are pressed or menus active, and to alter exposure settings in manual or semi-automatic modes
The dedicated ISO button just behind the shutter release brings up an on-screen ISO menu that can be navigated using the control dial or the arrow keys on the rear of the body. When the camera is held up your eye it highlights ISO in the viewfinder, again you can change it with either the dial or the left/right arrow keys.
Basic zone exposure modes
Full Auto and the six scene exposure modes are collectively referred to as the 'Basic Zone', in this 'Zone' certain settings are either fixed, restricted or unavailable. In the basic zone the camera will indicate that blur may occur because of slow shutter speeds, it does so by blinking the shutter speed on the LCD and viewfinder status bar.
Basic zone modes
|Fully Automatic Exposure
Camera has complete control over exposure, point-and-shoot operation.
Apertures are kept as large as possible (small F number) to produce a shallow Depth of Field (blurred background).
Apertures as small as possible (large F numbers) for the largest depth of field.
Aperture is kept to a medium setting to ensure the subject DOF is deep enough but the background is blurred.
Shutter speed is kept as high as possible to ensure capture of fast moving objects.
Allows for slow shutter speeds combined with flash to illuminate foreground and background.
Disables internal and external flash for taking automatic slow exposures.
Creative zone exposure modes
The five exposure modes will be more familiar to (and preferred) by most prosumer / professionals. All menu functions and camera settings are available in these modes and can be used in any combination.
Program Auto (flexible)
The upgraded movie mode brings the consumer Rebels in line with the more advanced (and more expensive) EOS models, offering true HD capture at various frame rates and full control over apertures and shutter speeds. Effectively, in fact, the EOS 550D offers the same movie specification as the more expensive EOS 7D, which represents about the most versatile movie recording package of any APS-C format DSLR currently on the market.
You start and stop recording by pressing the dedicated movie button on the back of the camera. Pressing the shutter button while you are recording a video will interrupt the video and record a stills image.
The EOS 550D offers control over the various movie settings. You can change the following parameters:
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Specifications
- 3 Body & Design
- 4 Body & Design
- 5 Body & Design
- 6 Operation & Controls
- 7 Operation & Controls
- 8 Operation (Live View)
- 9 Displays
- 10 Menus
- 11 Menus
- 12 Performance
- 13 Photographic tests (RAW)
- 14 Photographic tests (Noise)
- 15 Photographic tests (Noise)
- 16 Photographic tests (DR)
- 17 Photographic tests (DR)
- 18 Resolution
- 19 Photographic tests
- 20 Movie Mode
- 21 Compared to
- 22 Compared to (JPEG)
- 23 Compared to (JPEG)
- 24 Compared to (JPEG)
- 25 Compared to (RAW)
- 26 Compared to (RAW)
- 27 Compared to (RAW)
- 28 Compared to (Higher ISO)
- 29 Conclusion
- 30 Samples