Worth upgrading to Canon EOS Rebel T5i?

Tricia

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We have a Canon EOS Rebel T3i, about 6 years old. It has served us well, but we've stumbled upon a deal for a new Canon EOS Rebel T5i. We don't want to buy a new camera for the sake of buying a new camera, but I think we can use a new camera as a one camera quiver with the better video possibilities in the T5, and not have to carry the video camera with us.

The list of feature differences make me think this is a good time to upgrade and still get some $$ out of our old camera.
I'm looking for input from some of our camera guru's.
@DoryBreaux @Spooky Marcus @epic to name a few.

Listed features of T3
Features[edit]
  • 12.2 effective megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor.
  • DIGIC IV Image Processor.
  • 2.7-inch in color TFT LCD monitor with 230,000-dot resolution.
  • Sensor Crop Factor: 1.6x
  • Sensor Size : APS-C 22.2x14.7mm
  • Longer battery life: 700 shots
  • Less startup delay: 100 ms
  • Slightly lower noise at high ISO: 755 ISO
  • Continuous Drive up to 3 frames per second for 830 JPEG frames or 2 frames per second for 5 RAW frames.
  • ISO sensitivity 100–6,400.
  • Canon EF/EF-S lenses.
  • sRGB and Adobe RGB colour spaces
  • SD, SDHC, and SDXC memory card file storage
  • File formats include: JPEG, RAW (14-bit CR2).
  • 720p HD video at 25 or 30 fps

List of Features for T5
Features include:

  • 18.0 effective megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
  • Nine cross-type AF points. Center point is high precision, double cross-type at f/2.8 or faster.
  • DIGIC 5 image processor with 14-bit processing
  • ISO 100-12800 sensitivity, extends to ISO 25600
  • 95% viewfinder frame coverage with 0.87× magnification
  • 1080p HD video recording at 24p, 25p (25 Hz) and 30p (29.97 Hz) with drop frame timing
  • 720p HD video recording at 60p (59.94 Hz) and 50p (50 Hz)
  • 480p ED video recording at 30p and 25p
  • 5.0 frames per second continuous shooting
  • 3.0-inch Vari-angle Clear View LCD II Touch screen with 1.04-megapixel resolution.
  • 3.5mm microphone jack for external microphones or recorders
 

DoryBreaux

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I think it makes sense for you guys to have a one camera quiver. Small and easy to move with (small relative to all my shit that I feel I need to schlep everywhere). Personally I don't think I'll ever own a Canon again unless they do something insanely revolutionary. But for what you need, that kit is a good deal.
 

sonnyc

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There's the T5 and the T5i which is a much better camera. The cross-type AF points are really nice to grap focus especially in low light. The new screen is clean and sharp with alot of details to view the images too.
It's a big jump from the T3 that you have.
With that said, Canon Refurbish is having a big sale on the T6i + 18-55 IS kit lens for the same price (or even less than the T5i)
http://shop.usa.canon.com/shop/en/catalog/eos-rebel-t6i-ef-s-18-55mm-f-35-56-is-stm-kit-refurbished. I would go with this.

I've been shooting semi-professional with Canon camera for 10+ years and currently have a bag full of their L lenses.
 

Living Proof

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Trish,
You did state the present camera is a T3i, but, the features posted above appear to be from the Canon T3. The T3i has better mega pixels and video. Specs from T3i are below:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_EOS_600D.

My .02 is to keep the existing T3i until it does not meet your needs. The kit lens on both are probably the same, or, very close. Video performance of T3i should be plenty adequate for most situations, although some reviews do not like the auto-focus.

Phil always tells me that nobody asks a great chef what stove he uses, but, everyone wants to know what a great photographer's gear is. Moral of story is you can get great results from what you have in a camera. It's not like skis!;)
 
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Tricia

Tricia

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Correction, I was mistaken about the age and model of our current camera. Its the Canon EOS T1i
Specs
  • New 15.1-megapixel CMOS sensor with DIGIC 4 Image Processor
  • Includes Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens
  • Full HD video capture at 1920 x 1080 resolution; HDMI output
  • 3.0-inch Clear View LCD; Live View Function for stills (Quick, Live and Face Detection AF modes) and video
  • Capture images and video to SD/SDHC memory cards
 

quant

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1) It is always good to upgrade every few years. It has been awhile and you will notice the difference.

2) Don't forget glass. There could be a bigger difference with your photos with better glass vs. more mp, depending upon what you are trying to do with your photography. Getting a fast f/2.8 wide angle or a macro prime allows great creativity for everything from star trails to shooting close-ups of the mountain wildflowers. If you don't mind manual focus, Samyang (a/k/a Rokinon, Bower, etc.) is killing it with their new reasonably priced lenses. I like looking at the lens tests at www.photozone.de and other sites.

3) You probably don't want to change systems (most people shoot Canikon), but if you did the weatherproof 24mp Pentax D-3 is down to $660 at B&H Photo. Used copies go for less and the price is about to drop quite a bit more when the Pentax full frame comes out this spring (possibly by the EOM). If you can pick up a used version for $400 after the prices drop, you can put together a weatherproof system with just a couple of lenses that will survive the snow and rain on the mountains. Few people shoot Pentax, but there are bang-for-the-buck advantages with the brand, particularly the weatherproofing at a relatively low price.
 
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Tricia

Tricia

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I looked up a review of the T1i and it was introduced in '09 and cost $800 for the body. Wow, it was high tech back in the day! Not all are fans of Ken Rockwell, but, the full review is here
http://www.kenrockwell.com/canon/rebel-t1i.htm
Right.
I paid 800 for the camera with a basic lens back in 2009, then bought a bigger lens in 2010 along with extra battery and such.
As much as we like it, I'm thinking it may be easier to get the shots we want with the faster shooting capability on the T5i

The funny thing is, we are seeing the T5 and T5i both available for good deals but the T5 is a bit less $$. Not seeing a lot of difference between the two cameras in the specifics and details listed anywhere I'm looking.
Perhaps someone here can explain the difference:huh:
 

Xela

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I own a DSLR and a camcorder. Here's my on-hill take:

* The camcorder fits in a jacket pocket. The DSLR is cumbersome.
* The DSLR has an optical viewfinder. The camcorder LCD is too dim to see.

So, I always have the camcorder with me. I lug the DSLR out for special events. When that happens, I shoot stills and my wife shoots the video.

My advice is not to put money into a DSLR unless you know you're going to lug it around. If so, 1080p and the ability to focus are all you need.
 

Spooky

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I would't even consider the t5 to be an upgrade.

t5i has some extra stuffs like swivel touch screen, on sensor phase detection autofocus (which isn't that useful in practice), a few more autofocus points, better audio support. You could get some decent stills with this (though not much better than what you have) and video limited to static focusing situations.
 

JeffB

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I dealt with this question recently and, to my initial surprise, went in a different direction entirely. I now shoot with a mirrorless camera - the Olympus OM-D. For the past 25 years I've used SLR or D-SLR, mostly from Canon, but I started on Nikon F-bodies when having a blackroom was easy and fun. I have multiple Rebel bodies and canon lenses and like the platform. Here are my brief thoughts in abbreviated ski review format.

Who's it for: people with some photography background who enjoy it as a hobby. Smart phone cameras, even very good ones, will not be enough for the shots these people want to take and save. These people value freedom of composition and like having a platform where they can, at a minimum, play with aperture, shutter speed, and ISO. Most won't get into white balance or raw shots so much, but like to know that they can.

Who it's for - continued: people wondering if the image sensor on the current D-SLR is up to snuff. These people may also have the sneaking suspicion that carrying a larger D-SLR body, extra batteries, and a couple of lenses is more trouble than it's worth at least 75% of the time.

Who it's not for: other than legit professionals, I personally think a good quality mirrorless is more than sufficient for the vast majority of the D-SLR buying public. I can personally attest to the fact that I carry and use mine more than the 4-6 year old D-SLR. It has better sensors, better image quality, all in a more portable platform that is just as feature packed as the traditional camera body.

Insider tip: thinking you shouldn't do it because of all the money you have invested in lenses for a particular D-SLR platform is silly. In support, I cite the sunk cost fallacy.

In terms of the type of photography I most enjoy - travel landscapes, with a little bit of artistic flair and image manipulation, I honestly can't think of a situation in the last 8 months where I wish I had one of my cumbersome D-SLRs instead of the mirrorless, including during a multi-week summer trip through the Pacific Northwest, Glacier NP, and Banff.

Edited to add: the video capabilities of this platform obviate my need for any separate device.
 
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Spooky

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@JeffB I guess it is just due to mis-information and marketing, but Dslrs still exist for one reason and really one reason only: off sensor phase detection autofocus...which is the fastest and best way to ensure quickly moving subjects remain in focus.

If you don't shoot something that is moving quickly, dslrs are pointless. Until somebody invents any equivalent system that works in the same manner without a mirror(ish) light distributor, we will need dslrs for to ensure we get those shots. I don't think we will have to wait much longer... The problem is that I do like my Canon long lenses.
 

JeffB

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@JeffB I guess it is just due to mis-information and marketing, but Dslrs still exist for one reason and really one reason only: off sensor phase detection autofocus...which is the fastest and best way to ensure quickly moving subjects remain in focus.

If you don't shoot something that is moving quickly, dslrs are pointless. Until somebody invents any equivalent system that works in the same manner without a mirror(ish) light distributor, we will need dslrs for to ensure we get those shots. I don't think we will have to wait much longer... The problem is that I do like my Canon long lenses.
I don't disagree and think you've nailed the current tech issue and limitation. From a consumer/hobbiest perspective though, I wonder how many real world shots would be lost due to the limitation. I honestly don't know. If we assume good lighting, daytime shots, and "reasonable" subject velocities, I'd wager the difference is minimal at best all else being equal. Super G or DH on a flat light day - SLR wins. Slalom on a bluebird day with current tech and a skilled shooter? I'm not so sure.

Maybe it's the 9/10ths to 11/10ths stuff ...

But I'm fully willing to admit that I'm arguing in support of my own confirmation bias, in that I bought the mirrorless and now routinely leave 3 SLR bodies and 6 lenses at home.

Interesting discussion though -
 

Xela

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Two other points:

1. Optical viewfinders work much better in bright light than LCDs.

2. Large sensors allow more dramatic depth-of-field effects.
 

Alexzn

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Mirrorless has now caught up with DSLRs on all points, including AF speed and viewfinder pictures (and yes, the sensor size as well). Really the only reason to get a DSLR right now is if you have legacy lenses or need sports-level AF at a budget price (great mirrorless are still expensive). if you have good lenses, upgrade the body. If you don't, think twice. Micro4/3 and Sony mirrorless are particularly strong in video. m43 lenses are compact and very sharp. Sony (Zeiss) lenses are sharp and large and heavy.
 

Ken_R

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Hi Tricia. I make a living as a photographer and I get a lot of people asking for advice. The first thing I do before giving any is understand the type of work the person does or wants to do and how do they go about doing it. Nowadays we are blessed (or cursed) with a huge range of gear in all shapes and sizes. Generally everything is a compromise in one way or another so there are trade offs. Choosing a system is a big and somewhat longer term commitment (specially if you buy lenses and accessories) because generally photo gear makes a bad financial instrument unless you get a lot of good use out of it.
 

Spooky

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I don't disagree and think you've nailed the current tech issue and limitation. From a consumer/hobbiest perspective though, I wonder how many real world shots would be lost due to the limitation. I honestly don't know. If we assume good lighting, daytime shots, and "reasonable" subject velocities, I'd wager the difference is minimal at best all else being equal. Super G or DH on a flat light day - SLR wins. Slalom on a bluebird day with current tech and a skilled shooter? I'm not so sure.

Maybe it's the 9/10ths to 11/10ths stuff ...

But I'm fully willing to admit that I'm arguing in support of my own confirmation bias, in that I bought the mirrorless and now routinely leave 3 SLR bodies and 6 lenses at home.

Interesting discussion though -
It depends how much you are willing to buy photos. I am not a photographer; the only purpose I have is to capture objects that move a lot in a quick and unpredictable manner. If you want to attain professional quality, you're still going slr.

Plus in your case and as I always say: it's not confirmation bias if you're actually right.
 

Spooky

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What mirrorless cameras can we recommend here for a compact all-rounder here. They would want to capture some video ( maybe some mic action) of static people stuff, maybe some simple skiing shots with some all purpose still shots mixed in?
 
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