2019 Buying Guide: Best cameras for beginners
Published Nov 2, 2018 | dpreview staff
Canon EOS Rebel T7 (2000D)
24MP APS-C CMOS sensor | 1080p video | Wi-Fi w/NFC
What we like:
- Good image quality out of the box
- Easy controls
- Wi-Fi and NFC for easy sharing
What we don't:
- Generations-old processor caps what the 24MP sensor can offer
- Aging, basic 9-point AF system
- Lacks convenience features like touchscreen
The Canon EOS Rebel T7 / 2000D is an entry-level DSLR targeted toward first-time ILC users and smartphone upgraders. It's a slight update to the T6, upgrading to a 24MP sensor, but otherwise contains the same internals and hardware spec as the T6. It offers Wi-Fi with NFC for easier photo sharing when you’re out-and-about.
Photographers using an ILC for the first time will do just fine in Intelligent Auto mode, but unfortunately Canon's beginner-friendly Feature Assistant isn't included – for that you'll need to look to the pricier SL2 or T7i. Those looking to learn and take control of camera settings will be able to take advantage of a rear command dial for quick access to shooting parameters, but advanced users may start to find the minimal physical controls limiting. The rear screen doesn’t tilt or offer touch control as some in this class do.
Despite using a newer 24MP sensor, the T7's aging Digic 4+ processor offers a maximum expansion ISO setting of 12800
The T7 offers a 9-point AF system which is now several generations old. Overall, it’s reliable, but it predictably slows down in low light, and live view focusing speeds are just slow across the board. AF point selection is just a button press away, but its competitors with touch-to-focus capability will likely seem much more intuitive to someone who’s used to shooting with a smartphone. The good news is that with a battery rated to 500 shots per charge, the T7 (and likewise, its entry-level DSLR peers) outperforms mirrorless competitors by a significant margin.
We generally find that Canon's entry-level Rebels deliver pleasing images right out of the box. JPEG processing tends toward saturated blues and reds, and contrast can be on the stronger side, but they deliver punchy images that will serve a first-time user well. Those who dig deeper will find Raw files useful for fine-tuning images taken in poor light, as well as moderate 'shadow pushing.' Despite using a newer 24MP sensor, the T7's aging Digic 4+ processor offers a maximum expansion ISO setting of 12800, consistent with the T6. That comparatively low number means the T7 is likely not well suited to very low light shooting.
Video resolution tops out at 1080/30p. As with the T6, we expect that video quality is good, though continues to be limited to single point AF. Manual exposure options can be unlocked for video shooting, which is neat, but we can’t help feeling that an entry-level user interested in video would be better served by a mirrorless camera with continuous AF while shooting.
Overall, the T7 should provide a decent amount of control that’s likely to be sufficient for a range of beginning to intermediate photographers. If the optical viewfinder, DSLR form factor or rock-bottom price are especially attractive, the T7 is a fine option. But some of its competitors can offer you the convenience of a touchscreen, better AF in live view and even tracking ability, along with features like in-camera panorama and filters. If that sounds tempting, your money will be better spent on one of the T7’s mirrorless competitors.
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