Although the Canon EOS 650D was the first DSLR to have a touchscreen, Canon sensibly decided that the touch controls should be in addition to rather than instead of the button and dial controls.
[Update: The EOS Rebel T5i (known as the EOS 700D outside the US) has since been replaced by the EOS Rebel T6i / EOS 750D and EOS Rebel T7i / EOS 800D. These newer models offer a number of improvements, notably higher-resolution 24MP sensors and better performance characteristics. However, that does mean the EOS Rebel T5i / EOS 700D should be able to be picked up at a very tempting price. Especially if you keep an eye on our Black Friday deals.]
This helped widen the camera’s appeal, making it attractive to novices upgrading from a touchscreen smartphone or compact camera, as well as enthusiast photographers. As a result, according to Canon, the camera has sold very well.
Nevertheless after less than year the brand has decided to replace the Canon EOS 650D with the Canon EOS 700D, also known as the Canon EOS Rebel T5i. It sits alongside the Canon EOS 600D at the very top of Canon’s “consumer” lineup, just below the Canon EOS 60D that starts its “enthusiast” range.
However, the new camera only makes a few upgrades on the model it replaces.
The vast majority of the Canon 700D’s specification is the same as the Canon 650D’s. For example, the 18 million pixel APS-C sized sensor and the 14-point Digic 5 processor are the same. It also has the same hybrid autofocus system for use in live view or video mode as well as a nine-point, all-cross type phase detection system for use when using the viewfinder.
As before, the sensor has pixels that are used for the phase detection part of the hybrid autofocusing system that is available when using Live View mode or shooting HD videos.
When the Hybrid AF is in action, it uses the central pixels to inform the phase detection part and get the subject close to sharp – from then, the contrast detection steps in to get it into full focus. This means that you can use the camera handheld. Canon claims that the performance of this system when one of the new STM lenses is mounted has been improved.
Like the Canon EOS 650D, the Canon EOS 700D can shoot at 5fps, and the sensitivity can be set in the native range ISO 100-12800, which can be expanded to ISO 25,600 if necessary. This makes it a pretty versatile camera, capable of shooting in a wide range of situations.
One of the biggest changes brought with the new camera is that the impact of the Creative Filters (Grainy Black and White, Soft Focus, Fish-Eye, Art Bold, Water Painting, Toy Camera and Miniature Effect) can be previewed on the screen when shooting in Live View mode – just as you can with the Canon EOS 100D and the Canon EOS M.
However, these are still a JPEG-only option, so you can’t have a ‘clean’ raw file recorded with the JPEG. If you want an unfiltered image as well as one with the effect on, you need to apply the filter post-capture using the Canon EOS 700D’s post-processing options.
Alternatively, the Canon EOS 700D has the usual array of Picture Styles (Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Neutral, Faithful and Monochrome) as well as Auto, in which the camera selects what it calculates to be the appropriate option automatically, plus it can apply three user-defined styles.
All of the preset options can be adjusted to taste and can be used when shooting raw as well as JPEG files.
The Canon EOS 700D has also been designed to have a more expensive feel, with a textured coating and a 360-degree mode dial added. The latter means it can be twisted all the way around, rather than reaching a point where it stops and has to be twisted back again.
The Canon EOS 700D/Canon EOS Rebel T5i has a full asking price of £619.99 / AU$849 / US$749 body only or £749.99 / AU$999 / US$899.99 with the new 18-55 STM lens.
This means that it goes head to head with the 24 million pixel Nikon D5200, which was announced at the end of 2012.