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Canon EOS Rebel T2i DSLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens (OLD MODEL)
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- 18.0-megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor; DIGIC 4 image processor for high image quality and speed
- Kit includes 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens
- ISO 100-6400 (expandable to 12800) for shooting from bright to dim light; enhanced 63-zone, Dual-layer metering system
- Improved EOS Movie mode with manual exposure control and expanded recording 1920 x 1080 (Full HD)
- Wide 3.0-inch Clear View LCD monitor; dedicated Live View/Movie shooting button
- New compatibility with SDXC memory cards, plus new menu status indicator for Eye-Fi support
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|Auto Focus Technology|
|Continuous Shooting Speed||3.7 fps|
|Display Fixture Type||Fixed|
|Display Resolution Maximum||1,040,000|
|Effective Still Resolution||18,000,000 Pixels|
|Expanded ISO Maximum||12,800|
|Expanded ISO Minimum||100|
|Exposure Control Type|
|External Memory Included||Yes|
|Flash Memory Type||SD/SDHC/SDXC|
|Flash Modes Description||Auto|
|Flash Sync Speed||1/200_sec|
|Flash Type||Built-in Flash, Hot-shoe, E-TTL II|
|Focus Description||TTL-CT-SIR with 9-point CMOS sensor|
|Focus Type||Automatic with manual|
|Form Factor||Compact SLR|
|HDMI Type||HDMI Mini|
|ISO Range||Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800 (with boost)|
|Image Aspect Ratio||3:2|
|Item Dimensions||3.86 x 2.44 x 5.08 inches|
|Item Weight||1.17 pounds|
|Maximum Aperture Range||3.5 - 5.6|
|Maximum Focal Length||88 mm|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/4000 of a second|
|Maximum horizontal resolution||5,184|
|Memory Slots Available||1|
|Metering||Multi, Center-weighted, Spot, Partial|
|Minimum Focal Length||29 mm|
|Minimum Shutter Speed||30 seconds|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||18 MP|
|Optical Sensor Technology||CMOS|
|Photo Filter Thread Size||58 mm|
|Photo Sensor Technology||CMOS|
|Processor Description||Digic 4|
|Remote Control Description||E3 connector, Infrared|
|Removable Memory||Secure Digital card|
|Sensor Cleaning Method||EOS integrated cleaning system with fluorine coating|
|Shipping Weight||2.65 pounds|
|Style Name||Body + 18-55mm lens|
|Supported Battery Types||Lithium-Ion LP-E8 rechargeable battery & charger|
|Video Capture Format||h.264|
|Video Capture Resolution||1080p_hd|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical (pentamirror)|
|Water Resistance Level||Not Water Resistant|
Canon 4462b003 18.0 Megapixel EOS Digital Rebel T2i Camera (18 - 55 Is Camera Kit)
From the Manufacturer
The new flagship of the EOS Rebel line, Canon EOS Rebel T2i brings professional EOS features into an easy to use, lightweight digital SLR that's a joy to use. Featuring a class-leading 18.0-megapixel CMOS image sensor and increased light sensitivity for low light photography, the EOS Rebel T2i also has an advanced HD Movie mode for gorgeous Full HD movies. Able to capture up to 3.7 frames per second, it's ready to go the minute it's picked up. Advanced Live View, a new wide-area screen, plus features like Canon's brilliant Auto Lighting Optimizer and Highlight Tone features ensure brilliant photos and movies, easily. With some of the most advanced features of any digital SLR, it's simply the best Rebel Canon has ever created.
EOS Rebel T2i Highlights
18.0-megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor and DIGIC 4 Image Processor
The EOS Rebel T2i has an 18.0-megapixel CMOS sensor that captures images with exceptional clarity and tonal range and offers more than enough resolution for big enlargements or crops. This first-class sensor features many of the same new technologies as used by professional Canon cameras to maximize each pixel's light-gathering efficiency. Its APS-C size sensor creates an effective 1.6x field of view (compared to 35mm format).
The Canon DIGIC 4 Image Processor dramatically speeds up the entire EOS Rebel T2i's camera operations for intuitive operation and offers improvements in both fine detail and natural color reproduction. It works in concert with the EOS Rebel T2i's CMOS Image Sensor to achieve phenomenal levels of performance in nearly any situation.
The EOS Rebel T2i features an expanded ISO range that makes shooting possible in situations previously unthinkable without flash. With an ISO rating up to 6400 (expandable to ISO 12800), along with the DIGIC 4 Image Processor's improved noise-reduction technology, creative possibilities abound. Combine the EOS Rebel T2i with one of Canon's EF or EF-S lenses with Optical Image Stabilizer and the shooting possibilities for both movies and stills expand even further.
Improved EOS Movie mode with manual exposure control
Designed for the evolving, tech-savvy user, the EOS Rebel T2i features HD Video capture technologies--manual exposure control for more creative control, for example--borrowed directly from professional Canon SLRs to capture stellar video with all the benefits of shooting with an SLR. By shooting video with the EOS Rebel T2i, photographers as well as filmmakers can take advantage of the creative features native to SLR cameras. Along with its manual controls, the EOS Rebel T2i allows for full use of Canon EF and EF-S lenses, including Macro and Fisheye, providing a plethora of shooting options once reserved only for still photography. The resulting HD video is a standout in its beautiful depth-of-field characteristics and remarkable capture capability under poor lighting conditions. In a first for EOS cameras, a Movie Crop function is included: An SD-quality movie (640 x 480) can be cropped to the equivalent of about 7x magnification of regular shooting.
Video can be captured at a number of resolutions and frame rates for numerous applications. It can capture 1920 x 1080 Full HD video at frame rates of 24 (23.976), 25 or 30 (29.97) frames per second, for up to 4GB per clip. Movies are saved as MOV files and can be viewed in Full HD through the EOS Rebel T2i's HDMI output. Other recording sizes include HD at 1280 x 720 (50/60 (59.94) fps) or SD/VGA at 640 x 480 (50/60 (59.94) fps). The EOS Rebel T2i has a built-in microphone for simple mono recording and stereo sound can be recorded through a self-powered external microphone.
Enhanced 63-zone, Dual-layer metering system, and 9-point AF system
Additionally, the EOS Rebel T2i has a high-precision, 9-point AF system utilizing a high-precision, f/2.8 cross-type center point. The 9-point AF system uses both normal and high-precision focus depending on the aperture and available light. The 9 focus points can be chosen automatically or manually selected.
Wide 3.0-inch (3:2 aspect ratio) Clear View LCD monitor
The EOS Rebel T2i has a high-resolution 3.0-inch Clear View LCD monitor that features 1.04 million dots/VGA for spectacular detail. It also has the same aspect ratio (3:2) as the camera's sensor, making for clear and easy Live View composition. An anti-reflective and water-repellant coating provides a clearer and more smudge-resistant surface and screen brightness can be adjusted in 7 steps in accordance with ambient light.
New Quick Control Screen button
The EOS Rebel T2i's refined button layout includes a dedicated button that directs the camera immediately to the Quick Control screen, where it's simple to navigate among any number of settings, including ISO, Exposure and Flash Exposure compensation, drive mode, white balance, image quality and much, much more.
Without the need to navigate through a bunch of menus, the EOS Rebel T2i transitions effortlessly between still and movie mode. By pressing the Live View/Movie button, a situation that had required menu access with other cameras, still images can change to a movie shoot and vice versa. It's literally as simple as the press of a button.
3.7fps continuous shooting up to approximately 34 JPEGs or approximately 6 RAW
The EOS Rebel T2i can shoot up to 3.7 frames per second (fps) for up to approximately 6 consecutive RAW files or approximately 34 full-resolution JPEGs. Shooting at speeds of up to 1/4000 sec., the EOS Rebel T2i can capture even rapidly-unfolding scenes with ease.
New compatibility with SDXC memory cards
The EOS Rebel T2i is compatible with both SDXC memory cards for greater storage capacity and with Eye-Fi SD cards, which are outfitted with a Wi-Fi transmitter (IEEE 802.11b/g) and internal antenna for wireless, high speed transfer of images. With an Eye-Fi card installed, the EOS Rebel T2i can display the Eye-Fi's connection status and error notes with ease, for fully functional wireless uploading of images directly from the camera.
*Canon cameras are not guaranteed to support Eye-Fi card functions, including wireless transfer. In case of an issue with the Eye-Fi card, please consult with the card manufacturer. The use of Eye-Fi cards may not be available outside the United States and Canada, please contact the card manufacturer for territory availability.
Compatible with the full line of Canon EF and EF-S lenses
The EOS Rebel T2i is compatible with all Canon lenses in the EF lineup, including compact and lightweight EF-S lenses, ranging from ultra-wide angle to super telephoto lenses. Canon lenses employ advanced optical expertise and micron-precision engineering to deliver outstanding performance and deliver beautiful results. Special technologies like the Canon Image Stabilizer technology in select lenses helps to minimize the effect of camera shake, effectively adding up to four stops of light. With a dizzying array of lenses perfect for travel, sports, still life and everything in between, photographers can truly maximize the quality and performance of their EOS Rebel T2i with superlative Canon optics.
Canon EOS Digital Solution Disk (Version 22.0)
The EOS Rebel T2i comes bundled with a Canon EOS Digital Solution Disk, which features powerful software programs designed to extend the EOS experience to the computer. These include Canon's EOS Utility (Version 2.8.0), Digital Photo Professional (Version 3.8.0), ZoomBrowser EX for Windows (Version 6.5.0), ImageBrowser for Macintosh OS X (Version 6.5.0), the Picture Style Editor (Version 1.7.0), MovieEdit Task (Win/Mac, Version 3.4.1) PhotoStitch (Windows Version 3.1.22/Mac Version 3.2.4), Memory Card Utility (Windows Version 1.3.0/Mac Version 1.2.3), WFT Utility (Win/Mac, Version 3.5.1), and Original Data Security Tools 1.8.0 (Win). Each application is designed to perfect the captured images and streamline the digital workflow.
Compatible Operating System
Windows: Windows XP SP2 or SP3 / Windows Vista (all version except the Starter Edition) / Windows 7 32-bit and 64-bit versions. Macintosh: OS X 10.4 to 10.5
EOS Utility (Version 2.8.0) for Macintosh or Windows handles the connection between the camera and computer whenever they're connected via USB. It allows remote controlled shooting from the computer, handles downloading of images from the camera to the computer, and allows seamless linking to either Canon's ZoomBrowser EX/ImageBrowser or Digital Photo Professional software once images have been copied to the hard drive. Furthermore, it's used to upload settings back into a USB-connected camera.
Digital Photo Professional (Win/Mac, Version 3.8.0) is an image processing program that enables high-speed RAW image processing, high-speed previewing for real-time image adjustment and support for sRGB, Adobe RGB and Wide Gamut RGB color spaces. Because it's CMS (Color Management System) compatible, Digital Photo Professional allows for easy image layout and printing in Adobe RGB in conjunction with Easy-PhotoPrint and PictBridge printers. It also features the Dust Delete Data Detection tool for cleaner images.
Picture Style Editor (Win/Mac, Version 1.7.0)
Canon's Picture Style Editor enables you to create custom Picture Style profiles that can be used to customize the appearance of JPEG and RAW images captured with EOS Digital SLR cameras. Picture Style files created with Picture Style Editor can be loaded into the EOS cameras that support Picture Style and may also be used when processing RAW images in Canon software applications Digital Photo Professional, ZoomBrowser EX (for Windows) and ImageBrowser (for Mac).
ZoomBrowser EX (Version 6.5.0) for Windows and ImageBrowser (Version 6.5.0) for Mac OS X are the easy, user-friendly options for viewing and editing of JPEG and even RAW image files. Both allow viewing of numerous types of images including finished TIFF and BMP files. Both also have a variety of search options for finding images, allow re-naming of single images or batches of files, and offer a variety of options for printing without using a separate image-editing program.
- EOS Rebel T2i Body
- EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens
- Eyecup Ef (Not shown)
- Wide Strap EW-100DBIII
- USB Interface Cable IFC-130U
- AV Cable AVC-DC400ST
- Battery Pack LP-E8
- Battery Charger LC-E8
- EOS Digital Solution Disk and Instruction Manuals
- "Great Photography is Easy" Booklet and "Do More with Macro" Booklet (not shown)
Top Customer Reviews
1. Superb image quality in both photos and video.
You can expect image quality comparable to a Canon Pro DSLR.
And I am not just saying that. I actually did compare it to our 1Ds MkII.
This camera can produces usable images up to ISO 3200. Noise is there but they
do a good job of controlling it. With this said, it would be noted that there
really isn't that much difference between a Canon 20D and the most expensive DSLR
for photos that will be displayed on the web or in regular size prints.
If you don't really need video then you can save yourself a lot of money and just
get a used 20D :) I actually still have my original 20D as a backup.
2. Amazingly, the 18-55 kit lens turned out to be remarkably good. How good?
Well, within the center area of the frame it would give the more expensive lens a run for their money :)
Where it begins to break down is in corner detail but this is to be expected.
The focusing is also too noisy to use for video, IF you are recording sound.
UPDATE: if you are looking to upgrade the lens, I can recommended the Canon 15-85 IS.
3. The built in mic is also very good. Even on regular video cameras this is almost a universal weakness.
If you are looking for a better mic I can recommend the Rode SVM Stereo Video Mic.
Works very well with this camera, unlike the Audio Technica 24CM. Its not cheap but good mics never are.
On all of these cameras hiss is a problem to varying degrees especially when recording in a quiet environment.
The quiter the source the more you will hear it. The only way to get remove it is to use an external audio
record like the Zoom H4N or do it in software with something like SoundSoap.
4. Light weight compared to the higher end Canon bodies.
5. Amazing low light video capability. With a fast lens f2.8 or lower even a Pro video camera can't touch it.
So if shooting in dark places is a big requirement then these cameras are the way to go.
1. This is my biggest problem. I personally find the small body a lot more difficult to handle than the larger
Canon cameras we have. Maybe I am just use to the larger bodies but they are a lot more natural and easier
to work with. If you shoot pro or semi pro get the 7D just for this reason. The battery grip will help.
I have small hands so I hate to think how it would feel with someone that has large hands. I would highly recommend
you go somewhere and play with the T2i just to see how it feels in your hands.
UPDATE: The BG-E8 battery grip makes a big difference in this regard!
2. For my personal taste I find the T2i to over expose a bit. This could be related to the Peripheral Illumination
Correction, Highlight Priority, etc. I usually just under expose by 1/3 of a stop to compensate for this.
3. My 2nd big disappointment is the video. The video quality is superb this is not the issue. Where the problem lies
is in actually using the camera as a video camera. It has two big problems in this regard: the manual zoom and lack
of auto focus. It is practically impossible to hold the camera steady and do a smooth zoom in or out. Panning and zooming
at the same time is almost impossible. A regular video camera have electronic zoom controls that allows you to zoom
in and out very smoothly. The other problem is lack of auto focus. Sure you can refocus manually but again very difficult
to hold the camera steady and focus. Using the camera auto focus in video mode is possible but its really slow and
the mic will pick up the noise from the lens as it hunts for the focus. For me, this means, the camera is more useful
for recording short video clips not a full video shoot e.g. shooting a whole wedding. I don't feel it can replace a regular
video camera as yet. For example, if you are thinking of using this camera to shoot your kids running around, it can do it,
but there will be a lot of out of focus parts because it cannot track a subject like a regular video camera can and you
won't be able to adjust the focus quickly enough either.
UPDATE: the video can work for the most part, IF you shoot with the intent of editing the final video. A SLR will require
a bit more post production work than a regular video camera but the video quality will be superior. It works more like
a professional film camera they use in movies than the video cameras we know. But with that said, this camera still has
some real issues. Neither the shutter or aperture is continuous. You can only change them in 1/3 intervals...enough to
cause a jump in exposure in many instances. On top of that you cannot change anything without recording the clicking
noise the dial makes when you change the values. If you are using the mic in or on the camera this is a problem.
With this camera you have to setup a scene, setup your exposure, set your focus, and shoot the scene. Don't plan on
making any changes while you are shooting. So while the manual control is nice its not usable while shooting a scene.
If you can live with the Cons. Its a great camera that offers image quality comparable to any high end Canon model.
Other than the T2i, I own (and primarily shoot with) the Rebel XS (1000D), and also have extensive experience with the Canon 50D. While my XS still serves me very well, I wanted to get an SLR with video capabilities since the release of the T1i. After finally saving up enough for the T1i, I really lucked out that Canon announced the T2i, which has even better features! I am lucky enough to finally have it, and want to share my experiences, and how they compare to my expectations
The camera is very small and light. It is not weather-sealed or as durable as some of the more expensive SLRs, but it doesn't "feel cheap" in my opinion. It features a 3-inch LCD (compared to the Rebel XS's 2.5 inch screen), which also has a very high resolution. It looks lovely! Auto-focus is fast, and I've been very pleased with the quality of the pictures and videos I've taken so far.
IMAGE QUALITY: I feared that cramming so many megapixels onto this sensor, there would be a lot of image 'noise' (the megapixel myth). This thankfully hasn't been an issue, and I've been very pleased with the pictures taken with this camera! Aside from White Balance issues (see below, Cons), image quality is pretty good!
VIDEO: Some people have disparagingly said that Video on DSLRs is just a gimmick. I disagree. Based on sample clips I'd seen on YouTube, I was excited about getting an HDSLR, and while videos are sometimes shaky if you don't have very steady hands, a tripod eliminates those concerns. Audio quality on the T1i was criticized by many, but the T2i has a microphone input jack, which allows you to connect a mic. I don't yet own one so can't comment on that feature, but will update this review if and when I save enough to try this feature out. Additionally, this offers improved recording options, including higher fps (frames per second) than the T1i, which technically offered "true HD" recording of 1080, but only at a choppy 20 fps.
LOW-LIGHT PERFORMANCE: I am much more impressed than I expected. My Rebel XS could go up to ISO 1600, but would perform pretty poorly there. This not only can go up to a significantly higher ISO level, but performs much better. Less image noise means you have to waste less time editing your pics, and many more keepers!
SDXC SUPPORT: Only own SDHC cards up until now, but it's great to know that this supports the next generation of flash storage, which means you'll in the future be able to hold many more pictures than currently available.
NOT A FULL-FRAME SLR: This is not a full-frame SLR like the Canon 5D Mark II, and the APS-C sized sensor results in a crop factor (1.6x), and doesn't necessarily provide the same image quality as the larger, full-frame sensor does. Still, at less than half the cost of the Mark II, I think this is a trade-off that's well worth it for most users.
Crop factor means that this camera, like other Canon DSLRs that have the APS-C size image sensor, will not be true to the lens's designation. A 50mm lens will produce an image more in line with 50mm x 1.6, or 80mm on a full-frame. This not only makes a difference for those who want to do landscape photography (which usually benefits from wide-angle views), but for those with unsteady hands. The general logic is that to ensure a steady shot, you need to shoot at the reciprocal of your focal length. So for a 50mm focal length, you should be shooting at a speed faster than 1/50 second for a steady shot. Keeping the crop factor in mind, you really should be shooting at a speed faster than 1/80 a second.
Crop factors are common for most digital SLRs, as full-frame sensors jack up the cost of production, which are then passed on to the consumer in the form of very expensive cameras. So it's not so much a shortcoming of the Rebel T2i, but just a note to keep in the back of your mind.
DIFFERENT BATTERY: This is more of a hassle for those who owned spare batteries than for those whose first SLR would be the T2i, but Canon changed the battery. Again, not such a big deal, but might be a hassle for some who find out that their old batteries can't be used on this model.
WHITE BALANCE: I found that the 'Auto' White-Balance setting was wildly inaccurate on my Rebel XS (often giving indoor shots a yellow tint unless I changed the WB to the 'Incandescent Light' mode), and I feel that the WB settings on this model still aren't as accurate as they should be. If you want truly accurate WB, you can use a gray card, or an alternative would be to simply try digitally editing the photos on your computer after shooting.
NO ARTICULATING SCREEN: No articulating screen, but this is a rare feature in DSLR's in general, so it's not a shortcoming of the T2i. Since most of your shots will probably be composed using the viewfinder, not a big deal, although it would have been convenient! If you absolutely must have an articulating screen on an HDSLR, look into the Nikon D5000.
A NOTE ABOUT THE KIT LENS
The lens that comes with this is the standard 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 that comes with the other Rebels. It's a very good all-around lens, but you more likely than not will want to at some point upgrade your lens for either (a) better image quality, or (b) better performance in low-light conditions.
This lens is very good, but for pros or those who pay incredibly close attention to detail, the optical quality of Canon's higher-end lenses is superior than to the kit lens. For most users, I don't think image quality will be a huge issue.
More likely, the aperture size will be the reason people want to upgrade their lens over time. A lens with a wider aperture allows more light to reach the sensor in less time than a lens with a narrower aperture. That means you can employ a faster shutter speed, which allows you to snap the shot faster, reducing the likelihood of a blurry picture. Outdoors on a sunny day, this aperture range of this lens won't be a limiting factor; inside a poorly-lit gym, however, you'll notice some blurry shots (see below for a recommended alternative for low-light shooting).
Still, this is a pretty good all-around lens that can result in some great shots!
1. An external flash: This will come in very handy. With the built-in flash, your photos often come out harshly lit. Bouncing an external flash off the wall makes a huge difference in image quality. I personally use the Speedlite 580EX II, but there are cheaper alternatives that are very good. Some higher-end cameras (i.e. Canon 5D Mark II) don't even have a built-in flash, which goes to show something about how high-level photographers view the lighting provided by internal flashes.
2. 50mm f/1.8 II lens - At around one hundred dollars, this lens is relatively cheap when compared to others on the market. Despite its low price, it offers great image quality. While it lacks IS (image stabilization) like some other Canon lenses (including the kit lens), with a wide aperture of f/1.8, enough light usually comes in to ensure a fast shutter speed, which in turn minimizes camera shake. Keep in mind that as a 'prime' lens, your feet will have to do the zooming in and out. This is not as convenient as an everyday walk-around lens like the 18-55 kit lens which gives a good zoom range, but is a great lens for portraits. Also would ideally be a good option for poorly-lit places where the aperture of the kit-lens isn't wide enough to ensure a steady shot.
From my list of 4 pros and 4 cons, you might wonder why I'm giving this product 5 stars?... It's because considering the great performance - and low price - of the T2i, the 'cons' I list really aren't that big of a deal. Just because some cameras offer the aforementioned features the T2i lacks, it doesn't mean the T2i isn't a solid performer. On the contrary, I have been completely satisfied with this camera's image and video quality, performance, features, AND PRICE, and would recommend the T2i to anyone looking for an affordable way to capture memories!
I just wanted to update this review to say that after shooting with the T2i for nearly half a year, I'm still as impressed by this camera as when I first got it. I have a few comments to expand on my initial review:
VIDEO I have been using the video mode a lot more than I initially expected. While it doesn't offer continuous auto-focus and therefore might not replace a camcorder, once you get the hang of manually focusing this is not a big problem. I many times have found myself in situations where photos couldn't capture the moment as well as a video could, and the ability to record clips has been very convenient.
A note on the video mode, however...while it's automatic exposure is fine for most situations, if you find your videos are grainy, it's best to manually control the exposure. I've seen that sometimes even in good lighting, the camera will keep the aperture small (to have a less shallow depth of field) and boost the ISO. You can get around that by manually adjusting exposure settings, but again, the automatic exposures are usually fine.
As for audio with videos, I personally still have not purchased an external microphone, but for those who are serious about movie production Amazon sells a highly popular 'Rode VideoMic' for a reasonable price. I have looked up videos on YouTube which demonstrate the difference between the built-in mic and an external mic, and while it's tempting, I'd rather spend my money on better lenses than audio accessories.
CROP FACTOR To clarify on my 'crop factor' point from above on a full-frame vs. a crop-sensor body, there is a useful video on Vimeo that illustrates what I'm talking about. If you Google '5D 7D crop factor Vimeo' it comes up as the first result. As you can see, a full frame camera offers a view truer to the lens designations. Again, full frame cameras are costlier to make and therefore more expensive to the consumer, so APS-C sensor cameras like the Rebel T2i, 60D, and 7D are very good values for the money. But if you are not on a tight budget and think you might one day want to upgrade to a full frame some day for the improved low-light performance, higher image quality, and wider field of view, maybe skip on a T2i and just aim for a 5D Mark II (I personally love my T2i, but am excited about some day having my 24-105 shoot wider than its current effective 38-168 range.). For most users, however, APS-C sensor cameras like the T2i should be great, and some might even find the crop factor useful for telephoto work.
LENSES After spending so much money on a camera body, many people have a difficult time justifying buying expensive lenses, and I understand that. After upgrading from the 18-55mm kit lens to the 24-105L lens, however, I can honestly say that the money is well worth it. Colors are more vivid and truer to real life than the [now noticeably] duller colors produced by the non-L lens, and I rarely use the kit lens now. Again, the 18-55 is very versatile and provides a great value, but if you can afford to upgrade your lens to Canon's L series, you won't regret it. Perhaps try before you buy, to see for yourself what I'm talking about.
LOW LIGHT While this camera offers a boost ISO mode (to 12800 from 6400), I don't use that since its results are too grainy for my liking. But for night shots without a tripod, I have found ISO 3200 and 6400 to be a real advantage over my previous Rebel XS which only went up to ISO 1600, and even then produced noisier images than the T2i at 1600. While this camera doesn't produce high ISO pictures as cleanly as a full frame 5DMk2 does, at a fraction of the price I am incredibly pleased with this camera.
MEMORY CARD Lastly, I wanted to recommend you do a lot of research into which SD card you want to use. Class 6 or higher is recommended, but look into reviews to see how the card actually performs. I used to use a Transcend Class 6 card since it's very affordable, and have had movies abruptly stop recording at inopportune times. I upgraded to a Transcend Class 10, and unfortunately continue to have that happen. Not all Class 10 cards necessarily write at the same speed, so look thoroughly into reviews if you plan on using video mode to ensure you get a reliable, high-speed card. The Transcend cards are a great value for the money, and have many times been fine, but you might want to consider more expensive alternatives for greater reliability.
I wanted to update this review to reflect the fact that the camera is still serving me well, and to recommend some additional accessories I have since paired my T2i with. I recently got the Induro AKB0 Tripod Kit (Black),Joby GP8-BHEN Gorillapod Focus with Ballhead X bundle,Dolica WT-1003 67-Inch Lightweight Monopod, and Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L II IS USM Telephoto Zoom Lens for Canon SLR Cameras, and highly recommend them.
CAMERA SUPPORT With the T2i you can pull off handheld shots in low light by cranking up the ISO, but even though the T2i shows relatively little noise, it does show more than some would like in their shots (especially at ISO 6400). Digital noise can be reduced in post-production, but it's much easier to shoot at a lower ISO in the first place, especially for night shots. After paying so much for a camera body and other accessories, buying an expensive tripod might be the last thing you'd want to do, and I understand that: for a while I was using an older, cheaper tripod that was designed more for light camcorders than SLRs with heavy lenses. While this set-up technically worked, I didn't feel very confident in its reliability. After doing a lot of research and asking many photographers, I got the Induro kit, and have been very happy with it so far. It is more expensive than I would have liked, but it doesn't make sense to skimp on support and risk damaging your gear! With tripods, you have to make trade-offs between price, sturdiness, and weight, and while I'm happy with my tripod, it might not be adequate for your needs. There are many websites with tips on what to look for in a tripod (i.e. ball head, pan-tilt head, etc) that can help you make an informed decision. The Gorillapod is not nearly as essential to your shooting as a dedicated tripod, but I recommend it if you find yourself in situations where you don't want to/might not be permitted to carry a tripod, but need support. It sets up much faster than a tripod which needs to have its legs extended and locked. Lastly, a monopod is a great way to stabilize your shots without the hassle of having to carry a tripod, and is even more portable than a Gorillapod. That being said, it doesn't provide as much stability, so I use it primarily to stabilize video shooting (which can be a bit shaky due to composition through LCD screen instead of viewfinder, especially with a telephoto lens).
TELEPHOTO LENS The T2i has a high resolution sensor that, in my experience, provides for great shots even after cropping. I have taken shots and cropped to 100% and been pleased with results, but sometimes you want extended reach without cropping, and here a good telephoto really shines. Canon and third-party lens manufacturers offer many great telephoto options for the T2i, and it's important to think of what you need a telephoto lens for before investing in one. If you'll primarily be shooting with a tripod, you probably don't need IS; if you're going to be shooting in adequate light, a wide aperture isn't essential. I used the Canon 70-300 non-L non-IS lens, but don't recommend it. Keeping in mind the reciprocity of focal length and shutter speed, Image Stabilization on a telephoto lens makes things much easier for hand-held shooting. I much preferred the 55-250 IS over my 70-300 non-IS (there are also IS versions of the 70-300), but found its low-light performance was weak due to its relatively small maximum aperture size. I recently got the 70-200 2.8 IS II, and am blown away by its fast auto-focus, great low-light performance, and superior optical quality. It is an expensive lens, but is well worth it if you need a fast lens (wide aperture) that features Image Stabilization.
EDIT 02/07/11 *FINAL UPDATE*
NEW REBEL The T2i's successor, the T3i has just been announced, and will be available in March. Based on its specs, I don't think this is a necessary upgrade for current T2i owners. The main improvements found in the T3i are a swiveling screen, wireless flash transmitter, improved Auto mode detection, an enhanced Movie Zoom mode, and creative filters. Of these, I think the most important or sought-after improvements are the flash transmitter (which is is great for advanced shooters and those who want to explore with lighting) and the swiveling LCD screen (which allows for more flexibility in shooting). While these are useful new features, they are largely incremental and I will be sticking with my T2i. For new buyers, the T3i looks great and is very worth looking into when it comes out. Canon also announced a T3 camera to succeed the Rebel XS, which is great for beginners but is lacking in features compared to the T2i and the newly-announced T3i, including the ability to capture 'true HD' at 1080. Even with Canon's recent announcements, I think the T2i is a great DSLR and I highly recommend it to everyone.
EDIT 06/13/11 *THIS REALLY IS THE FINAL UPDATE*
I know this review is now longer than some novels, but I really can't stress enough how great this camera is. I've used this in a variety of settings, both professionally and for personal use, and it's served me so well throughout. While I've shot events before, last night I shot the Tony Awards in NYC...which meant many thousands of shots over the course of many hours...and I was highly impressed with the T2i's performance. I did have to change batteries during the course of the event, but that was many hours into the event. You can easily get a spare third-party battery for just a few bucks.
I recently purchased a cheap (less than 20 dollars) intervalometer from Amazon, and have started creating time-lapse videos with my T2i. Setting up cool time-lapse, and capturing HD video, are two areas where an articulating screen (like that found on the T3i and 60D) would come in handy, but again, this is not an essential feature, so I am pleased with my T2i. The intervalometer I got through Amazon was third-party, but since it cost about a tenth of the official Canon one, I am very pleased and highly recommend it if you want to take your T2i to the next level.
The T2i is an amazing camera. I highly recommend it to anyone and everyone who is even remotely interested, whether you never owned an SLR before, or want a second body as a backup. I love the T2i!
- The 18-135mm lens is a nice upgrade to the standard kit 18-55mm lens. Especially if this is your first DSLR, and you don't want to spend more money on lenses. It is also good for trips, taking pictures of kids, or in any other situation where you don't want to change lenses. (And you save about $100 when purchasing this kit, compared to body + 18-135mm Canon lens).
- Performance. Minimal shutter lag, good low-light performance, nice video.
- Relatively light (about 1 kg / 2 pounds with lens), again good for trips.
- Built-in flash is not so great. Also when taking pictures on wide angle setting, lens creates a shade.
- No autofocus when zooming while taking video, pressing shutter button half way focuses the picture.
- Focus in live picture mode is slow (even slower than on most point and shoot cameras)
- Make sure to get UV filter (mostly for protecting the lens), and a spare battery (I've got the Opteka one for ~$13).
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