We don’t doubt that Canon always releases a good product. They’re one of the brands that photographers consistently come back to because they churn out high-quality gadgets. A reputation like that means that any one of the products is worthy of your consideration.
That being said, the T5i and T6i might be a little confusing. You need a new camera, you know that Canon has quality cameras, but which one do you choose? Are there enough differences between the two to warrant a price difference?
The T6i is newer and more expensive, but is it the better camera? Which one should you choose?
You can’t make decisions like that on the fly, so you need a little background information to set you on your way. That’s where we come in. We’ll look at key features from both cameras, their pros, and cons, a brief summary of each one, and then we’ll decide which camera is better. It can be hard to choose between these two, but by the end of this review, you should have a good idea of what you want.
Canon T5i or Canon T6i? Let’s Find Out.
Table of Contets
Canon T5i vs Canon T6i: Features
When you make your choice and buy a camera, you’re going to have a variety of features at your fingertips. That’s why it’s so important to know which features you’re going to have. As we mentioned before, these cameras are similar, but we can find important differences in their features.
1. Build and Handling
The T5i is based on the same design as its predecessor, with a few changes. You can expect a well-designed set of external controls for the main shooting functions and an LCD screen. The body is made from plastic, but its solid without feeling cheap. The camera’s grip is slightly bigger than its predecessor which will improve how you hold the camera. The T5i is advertised as having an “upmarket” finish, although this just means that its less shiny than other cameras. It’s never a bad thing when your camera looks more expensive than it was.
The T5i is an entry-level camera, which is why it’s so surprising that it has so many control points. In fact, it even rivals some of Canon’s more expensive models in this regard. It also has a full range of connectors such as the USB and HDMI ports, and an external microphone socket. You can find most of the controls on the top of the camera. You’ll the power button next to the mode dial.
Another good thing is that the mode dial rotates continuously, which is a step-up from the previous models in this range. You can also look forward to a competent touchscreen, or if you prefer a manual screen, you can switch off the touchscreen capabilities. The camera’s ergonomics are straightforward and easy to use.
If you’re upgrading from an older Canon, then it will be like coming home. It’s also a light camera, so you can carry it around your neck all day without noticing too much of a difference.
The T6i looks almost exactly like the T5i, but has a stronger body made from aluminium alloy and polycarbonate. It doesn’t feel as solid as Canon’s more upmarket cameras, but it doesn’t feel cheap. The grip on this camera is slightly small, so beware if you have large hands.
The front of the camera houses an IR receiver, AF-assist lamp, and a stereo microphone. The left side has the SD slot, and the I/O ports are on the right. The back of the camera is well-designed with most of the control buttons situated there for easy access.
This camera is light and compact, making it easy to transport. This camera’s screen uses the same touchscreen technology as most touchscreens, making it a delight to use.
2. Battery Life
Both cameras are powered by the Canon LP- E8, which has rechargeable lithium-ion batteries. This battery pack allows for about 440 shots on a single charge. These aren’t great numbers, so it would be a good idea to bring extra batteries along so that you can stay out capturing memories for longer. This number isn’t definite and does depend on what features you use while shooting.
The T5i doesn’t have built-in Wi-Fi, but you can connect the camera to your smart devices to share your photographic masterpieces. We must say that the lack of Wi-Fi isn’t a good thing, but it doesn’t take the camera out of the running either.
On the other hand, the T6i is the first Canon DSLR that features both Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Communication) technology. These features allow your camera to connect to a compatible device to share images or enable remote control of the camera. With NFC, you can connect two cameras by touching the NFC logos together to transfer images wirelessly. These features will make you feel like a futuristic photography, and is a massive advantage in the T6i’s favor.
4. Sensor and Processor
A camera’s sensor is the biggest factor when it comes to determining image quality. A large image sensor will have larger individual pixel-units, better low-light sensitivity, a wider dynamic range, and richer colors. A larger sensor gives a photographer more control over the image. But larger sensors are more expensive and are often found in heavy cameras with bigger lenses.
The T5i has a 18MP APS-C sensor while the T6i has a 24.2Mp APS-C sensor. Both cameras have medium sized sensors which strike the perfect balance between weight and image quality. They both have good sensors, but since the T6i has the better sensor, it will produce better image quality.
The T6i uses a more advanced image processing engine, the DIGIC 6, than the T5i (DIGIC 5). The better the processor, the better noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.
Once again, the T6i gains the advantage when it comes to the software that will impact your image quality the most.
The T5i offers AF features that make sure that you get quick, accurate and continuous AF every time. When you shoot through the viewfinder, the T5i has advanced autofocus with a 9-point, all cross-type AF system for accurate focus whether in portrait or landscape position. The AI Servo AF system gets and keeps consistent, reliable focus.
The T5i also has Canon’s Hybrid CMOS AF System, which is beneficial when it comes to shooting photos and video in Live View. The Hybrid system combines two different AF technologies, phase and contrast detection AF, which results in faster and more precise focus. A major advantage of this system is that it can offer you the ability to use continuous AF tracking while recording videos.
While this is an impressive feat, the T6i has a 19-point phase-detect AF system when shooting through the viewfinder. You can let the camera choose the AF point, or you can choose manually in Single Point or Zone AF mode.
The camera also features Canon’s Hybrid CMOS AF III system, which has Face detection, Tracking AF, FlexiZone-Multi and FlexiZone-Single modes, and is available when using Live View.
As we mentioned before, the T5i has a touchscreen. The screen uses capacitive (contact sensitive technology, which allows it to behave like a smartphone. You can use the screen to specify the point of focus and choose to release the shutter in Live View and Movie mode.
The screen also acts like an iPhone screen in that it supports multi-touch. The screen jas been designed with a no-air gap between the display and cover glass. This has been done in an attempt to minimize reflections and improve visibility in bright light. The screen also has an anti-smudge coating to reduce the impact of the touch-sensitivity.
The T6i also has a 3.0-inch 1,040,000-dot touch-sensitive Clear View II TFT screen. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2 that perfectly matches the uncropped ratio of the imaging sensor. The vari-angle hinge on the side of the body allows it to be placed in a range of positions, which is helpful when shooting low on the ground or overhead.
The T5i has user-friendly professional video capture that’s able to shoot in a bunch of recording sizes and frame rates. The T5i sets the standard for cameras in the same range when it comes to video recording. The T5i also allows easy manual control of exposure, focus, and Live View features, it also has in-camera editing!
The Movie Servo AF allows continuous autofocus tracking of moving subjects when you’re recording videos. If you use one of Canon’s STM lenses, for example, the EF-S 18–55mm f/3.5–5.6 IS STM, the Movie Servo AF uses the lens’ stepping motor for smooth (quiet) continuous AF.
With the T6i, all you need to do is press a button to start recording Full HD videos. The Hybrid CMOS AF III enables the camera to focus fast and reliably, even when tracking moving subjects. It has a shallow depth of field and high ISO sensitivity which allows cinematic quality in low light provide cinematic quality even in low light.
You can also rely on Canon STM lenses to focus quickly and quietly. Canon also offers a wide selection of compatible EF and EF-S lenses to let your imagination flow into your work.
8. Image Quality
The T5i offers a maximum frame rate of 5 fps, a noticeable upgrade from its predecessor’s maximum of 3.6fps. The camera’s on-imager phase-detection system allows the autofocus system to use phase-detection subject tracking while in live view. This means that if you’re focusing near the center of an image, the camera will know which direction to focus in.
Usually, systems based solely on contrast-detection can get this wrong, which blurs the image momentarily before regaining focus. , with the result that the camera re-focuses all the way out of focus before coming back again, resulting in a video that suddenly drops totally out of focus, before recovering.
It’s worth noting that when using the flash with Auto ISO, the camera won’t use a sensitivity below ISO 400. This means that in bright conditions, you can end up with a camera selected aperture of f/16 or f/22. If you use Av mode, the camera will quickly lower ISO values in bright light. That being said, there’s a clear preference for ISO 400.
The T6i shares many features with previous Rebel models. But, the changes that were made, means that the end result is different from what you’d normally find. The camera is quite responsive at about 5 frames per second, thanks to the improved imaging processor. The autofocus is also speedy, and there aren’t many focusing issues. Color quality is wonderful, and you can look forward to deep and dynamic colors.
When choosing an interchangeable lens camera, it’s vital to know how many lenses are available. The Canon T6i and T5i have the same Canon EF/EF-S lens mount, and there are 304 native lenses available for them at the moment. This means you have a wide selection to choose from. You’ll find that with such a lot to choose from, your creativity can run wild.
You should also consider the availability of image stabilization. Neither of these cameras has sensor-based image stabilization so you need buy lenses with Optical stabilization feature. There are about 91 lenses with Image stabilization for Canon EF/EF-S mount.
10. Canon T5i vs Canon T6i: Pros and Cons
Now that we know what each camera has to offer, we’re sure you have a front-runner. No decision can be made before we look at the pros and cons though. So, we’ll look at the main advantages and disadvantages to consider before making a purchase. We also compiled a brief summary of each camera that consists of observations made by other users.
It’s nearly time to make a decision, so let’s see what each camera has to offer!
Canon T5i: Pros
- Intuitive and efficient touchscreen
- High-quality images with a good balance between detail and noise reduction
- 5 fps with sufficient buffering in JPEG-only mode
Canon T5i: Cons
- Slow Hybrid AF in Live View and Video modes
- Slightly high noise levels
- Short battery life when compared to other cameras
Canon T5i: Summary
The general consensus among customers is that this is a ‘keeper’. Upgrading from an older Rebel model to this camera will leave you impressed. When you consider how much you pay for this camera, it’s a great camera. There are a few cons that might make you hesitant, but it’s important to remember that the camera does its job and it does so very well. You can look forward to a speedy response and high-quality images. The lack of Wi-Fi is unfortunate, but not earth-shattering.
Canon T6i: Pros
- New and improved 25MP sensor
- Wi-Fi and NPC for easy sharing
- Speedy focus response
Canon T6i: Cons
- Average video performance
- Small viewfinder
- Wireless pairing is a bit complicated
Canon T6i: Summary
If this is the camera that introduces you to the wonderful world of photography, then you should be well on your way to conquering the field. It does very well, and it has more than enough features to make it worthy of being a modern camera. You’’ enjoy the beautiful pictures and simple Wi-Fi/NFC connectivity. You won’t be making any waves as a videographer, but it will do a much better job than a point-and-shoot or your smartphone. At the end of the day, it’s a great camera that will make photography more of a joy than it already is.
Canon T5i vs Canon T6i: Verdict
We made it! Not only have we looked at a few features, but we’ve also considered the most pressing pros and cons. You’ve gotten to know what other users have had to say, and each camera has made a decent case for itself. Unfortunately, most of us will only buy one camera. Before we announce the winner, let’s look at a few closing arguments.
The T5i kept large portions of what we liked about its predecessor. The camera has impeccable image quality thanks to the 18MP CMOS sensor. It’s also well designed and has a number of external controls for when you’re ready to do more than point and shoot.
We also have to comment on its great touchscreen. The biggest flaw comes in the form of the Hybrid AF in Live View and Video modes. It’s an upgrade from its predecessor, and better than other cameras on the market. That being said, we’d like to say more than “it’s sometimes okay”. It also doesn’t have Wi-Fi, which will take it out of the running for a lot of users.
Photography is this camera’s strong point. The images that come out of this entry-level camera aren’t something to be trifled with. It also wins when it comes to its AF system and easy Wi-Fi connectivity. Although its videos are good, they aren’t great. There’s nothing wrong with them, they’re just nothing to write home about.
Now, for the winner. When choosing between the T5i and T6i, we’d have to choose the T6i. This decision is based on the fact that the cameras are alike, but the T6i is better in many aspects. The T6i has its megapixels, AF system, and Wi-Fi connectivity that makes it stand out as a clear winner. On the other hand, the T5i is a good camera with a cheaper price tag.
Canon T5i and T6i are two best-selling, popular and powerful cameras that have the best features and capabilities. If you’re looking for a quality purchase, both of these are a safe bet.
Since it’s been out for longer, you’ll also find a few more bargains. Unfortunately, the price isn’t our only consideration and so the T6i won this round. This doesn’t mean that its the camera that you have to buy. Remember that personal preference will always trump everything else.
Choose your favorite and review all your memories in crisp HD!