Guide Canon EOS Rebel T1i / 500D For Dummies

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Digital SLR technology has come a long way since that first Digital Rebel, and the D is a prime example of a modern digital SLR: it's not only good for stills, it also doubles as a High Definition video camera. The digital SLR marketplace is getting more crowded each and every year — cameras without the latest feature set won't have a very long shelf life. Closer inspection reveals a new setting : one of the options on the main mode dial is a video camera. Yes, the T1i is not only a capable still camera, but it also moonlights as a High Definition video camera, with the ability to leverage any one of Canon's EOS lenses.

And the video quality is as high as it gets: full p, suitable for playback on modern HDTV screens. While both of these might seem like huge advantages over other DSLRs with video, there are a couple of drawbacks to be aware of and I'll explain each one in more detail later in this Canon T1i guide :. Drawbacks aside, the Canon T1i is a great option for anyone who doesn't want to have to lug around both a digital SLR and a video camera.

I've included this section on every digital SLR camera guide that I have ever written In , the relatively basic features available on digital SLRs made them easy to differentiate: some cameras were better than others for certain photographic styles. What does this mean? It means that with the Canon T1i D in your hands you can take landscapes, portraits, macro close-up and studio shots.

Oh yeah — you can also capture video any time you want. In this sense, the D can be used by everyone from a mom who wants to document the growth of her kids to a budding film-maker who wants to produce his own dramas. Beginners can get started taking pictures and shooting video without a lot of prior experience with a digital SLR. At the same time, more advanced photographers will appreciate the three custom color settings, white balance adjustment and exposure bracketing.

Canon EOS 500D Review / Canon Rebel T1i Review

Simply put: the Canon D is a camera that you can grow into as your photographic skills develop The most notable differences include a jump in megapixels from 12 to 15 and the addition of the movie mode on the D. Since these two cameras are so alike the main question you have to answer is: how much are you willing to spend for the "extras" included in the D?

Canon EOS 500D | Rebel T1i

If you just want to take pictures with your DSLR, then either camera should suit you well - with the money that you save by getting the XSi D , you can consider upgrading the kit lens or even buying a second lens. Bottom Line: if video capture is not important to you, then save money by getting the XSi D. If you really want to see all the differences between the Canon D vs.

If you take photos from normal angles, then both the Canon D and the Pentax K-7 are great alternatives. The very first thought that went through my head when the Canon D box arrived on my doorstep was: "they forgot to include the camera! The D box is amazingly small, given that it includes the camera, lens and all of the accessories and manuals. It's a testament to the small size and weight of the D, and makes you realize that this camera is quite portable for a digital SLR. The small size can be a drawback — people with large hands or long fingers may find that the grip isn't deep enough, which can make the camera uncomfortable to hold.

One accessory that helps to get a tight hold on a camera like this is a wrist grip strap. Wrist grip straps wrap around the outside of your hand, preventing the camera from slipping out of your fingers. This provides you with a much more comfortable grip, since you don't have to hold onto the camera for fear of dropping it.

Like other small-sized digital SLR cameras , the D does not have a settings display on the top of the camera. Instead, all settings are viewed and changed either by looking through the viewfinder or by using the camera's LCD display. The main mode dial on the top of the camera provides access to the AUTO and manual shooting modes. The main mode dial also lets you activate the movie mode - this is problematic if you enjoy using the manual exposure modes to take pictures. The problem here is that there is no easy way to quickly switch between a manual picture mode and movie mode.

The movie mode selection is at one side of the main mode dial, while the manual picture settings are at the other. While you can take still images with the camera set to movie mode, you don't have any control over the camera's settings. At a children's birthday party, I was trying to grab still shots as I was capturing video.


Since I often use Aperture Priority Av mode to take pictures, I had to keep cranking the main mode dial back and forth from the Av setting to the movie setting. It's easy to do this when you have plenty of time, but I found myself getting frustrated with the process and missing shots and great video moments because the transition was taking too long. Obviously if you always take pictures in AUTO mode then there's no issue - if you're in video mode, you just press the shutter release button to snap a photo.

But for anyone who is used to using manual controls on an SLR or for those who'd like to in the future be aware that switching from pictures to movies is not quite as smooth as it is on other digital SLRs with video.

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In addition to the main mode dial, there are a variety of other buttons located on the front, back and sides of the Canon D that you can use to adjust and set various camera settings:. The new "Creative Auto" mode is designed to help beginning photographers make the transition from pure point-and-shoot to a small amount of manual control. I'm a huge advocate of manually controlling your digital SLR - you get much better pictures that way - but learning the controls can be challenging.

Rather than having to memorize what aperture, shutter speed and ISO are all used for, in Creative Auto mode you just move sliders back and forth to adjust how your image looks.

Canon U.S.A., Inc. | EOS Rebel T1i

Once you've played with the sliders a bit, you can get a feel for how different your photos can look even with minor manual adjustments. One interesting omission here is the ISO control, which is incredibly useful when you want to increase your shutter speed to prevent image blur. However, the Creative Auto mode is not meant to replicate the manual modes, but instead act as a stepping stone for those interested in making the transition from full auto to semi-manual control.

If you don't intend to watch all of the videos you capture with this camera on an HDTV that has vertical scanning lines also called p then capturing at this setting is a waste. On the flip side, this video looks incredible when played back on a p television. If you want to blow away relatives with some clips from your next vacation, this is definitely one way to do it. The D also has two interesting features not readily available on other digital SLRs with video:. If you want to extract still images from your movie files, you can also do this with included software from Canon.

The images that you extract will be the same dimensions as the movie file x which is about 2 megapixels. One bonus use of the HDMI to TV connection is that you can use your television as a giant LCD screen - either in live view mode if you want to compose pictures or in playback mode to show off what you've taken. Holding the camera is slightly awkward because the EOS D's comparatively small body size means that the grip isn't particularly deep and people with large hands like me may find that their little finger has nowhere to go.

Definitely something to consider, and worth a trip to your local camera shop to try out the D in person. As the name suggests, this lens has image stabilisation, an important factor given that competitors like Sony, Olympus and Pentax all offer image stabilisation in their DSLRs.

The difference between Canon and Nikon and the others is that Sony, Olympus and Pentax have opted for stabilisation via the camera body, rather than the lens, which therefore works with their entire range of lenses. Canon's system is obviously limited by which lenses you choose, but it does offer the slight advantage of showing the stabilising effect through the viewfinder. Canon and Nikon also claim that a lens-based anti-shake system is inherently better too, but the jury's still out on that one.

Like most entry- and mid-level DSLRs the EOS D provides a number of auto shooting modes aimed at beginners, including portrait, landscape, close-up, sports and night portrait and flash off choices. All of these functions performed adequately, apart from the close-up macro mode that did not come near to offering a true reproduction you'll need a dedicated macro lens for that.

Canon EOS 500D | Rebel T1i

There are, of course, manual and semi-automatic modes for users who want more advanced exposure control. Canon refers to these advanced operations as the 'creative zone' and provides all the normal settings including Program, Aperture and Shutter Priority and the full manual mode.

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  4. Additionally, they provide the 'A-DEP' Automatic Depth of Field function that gives a wider depth of field between a near and far subject. New for the EOS D is the Creative Auto CA mode, which as the name suggests provides a half-way house between full auto and the more advanced shooting modes. First featured on the more expensive 50D model, this mode is targeted at beginners who have grown out of using the Full Auto mode, allowing you to change a few key settings using the LCD screen, with a simple slider system for changing the aperture and exposure compensation, or Background and Exposure as the camera refers to them.

    Once the EOS D is in the 'creative zone' users can adjust the ISO setting into one of eight positions from to , a versatile range that is more than adequate for virtually any lighting conditions. This expansion is a very welcome move by Canon which surpasses most of its competitors.