Canon EOS Rebel T6i Digital SLR Review

With one launch every year, the Rebel series of cameras have been increasing in number faster than a couple of rabbits. But that is not a bad thing at all, as the Rebels are the most in-demand cameras for beginners and enthusiasts.

The Rebel T6i, or the 750D, are a step above the rest though. With major changes inside the camera packed into a solid feeling body and a swiveling touchscreen LCD, the T6i promises more than a simple starter package. Let's see whether it is the camera for you or not!

Canon T6i

Canon T6i

Body and Design

The Canon Rebel T6i looks and feels like most other Canon cameras. The buttons are all in the same place, the grip is rubberized and comfortable, and the weight is light enough to make it portable but also heavy enough to not make it feel cheap.

The T6i is a 24.2 Mp APSC camera – more on this in the next section – with aluminum alloy and polycarbonate chassis and a composite shell. It may not be an 80D, but it certainly comes close enough.

In your hands, the T6i certainly feels compact, but the grip may not be that comfortable for people with large hands.

On the front of the camera you will find an IR receiver for remote shooting, AF assist lamp for auto focus in low light and a stereo microphone. Sadly, there is no DOFP button for pre-viewing of your set depth of field.

Coming to the top of the camera, the first thing you'll notice is the non-lockable shooting mode dial, which unfortunately has no space for saving user's presets. There are present the usual modes like Portrait, Landscape, Auto, Macro etc. along with the P, S, A, M modes for controlled shooting. For a bit more control over the settings of the camera, there are buttons provided for changing ISO and AF areas and viewing different display modes. There is also the usual On-Off lever beside the dial, which now comes with the 3rd option of video mode added to it. Right behind the shutter button is the control dial. Canon has provided just that one dial, saving its dual dial design for more expensive bodies.

Top view of Canon Rebel T6i

Top view of Canon Rebel T6i

It is the back of the camera which houses almost all the buttons of this small but hefty DSLR. The 3” touchscreen LCD which comes out and rotates all the way occupies most of the back. Right on top if it is the 95% coverage viewfinder with x0.82 magnification. This is one of the few cons of the camera, as a bigger viewfinder would have really set the T6i apart.

Features and Performance

At the heart of the Canon Rebel T6i is the new and improved 24.2 megapixel APSC CMOS sensor, which is certainly a much needed change from the ancient 18 megapixel sensor that Canon has been using for all Rebels.

Backing this high pixel-density sensor is the 7560-pixel RGB and an IR metering sensor which allows excellent metering of almost all scenes. Processing the files out of the excellent sensor is the Digic 6 processor, which maintains detail and sharpness even at high ISO's very well. The only downside is that the files are quite big in size, which reduces shooting speed to an average 5 fps

Canon Rebel T6i

Canon Rebel T6i

Yet another major improvement in the T6i is of the auto focus module. Canon's new Hybrid CMOS AF III system uses sensor-based phase detect points for quicker and better auto focus. Although it is not the Dual Pixel technology of the 70D, it is better than the usual Live View focusing found in other cameras. When out of Live View, the T6i uses the 19-point all cross type phase detect auto focus found in the 70D, which is another much needed change from the 9 point AF system used for previous Rebel models. The ISO range remains the same, with an option to go up to 25,600.

Other improvements are the inclusion of WiFi and NFC for better connectivity and Flicker detection, which detects changing lighting and matched the shutter with the flicker. Both of these are features never included before in earlier Rebel cameras.

From the stills point of view, the Rebel T6i when paired with a good lens, will do very well. It meters and focuses very well and the dynamic range of the images is an improvement, though not as  good as its competitors. From video point of view, the T6i again improves, but doesn't match the competition. Full manual control and 1080p/30p for videos is the best you will get in this camera.

Pros

  1. A much improved 24.2 Mp sensor with 7560-pixel and IR metering sensor.
  2. 3” swiveling touchscreen LCD.
  3. 19-point all-cross type AF system with Hybrid CMOS AF III module for quick Live View focusing.
  4. A solid body with a comfortable weight to it.
  5. Full Manual control in video mode.

Back view of Canon T6i Rebel DSRL camera

Back view of Canon T6i Rebel DSRL camera

Cons

  1. Dynamic range is better, but still not close to cameras like Nikon D5500 or Sony a6300.
  2. Not many direct controls and no dedicated AF-on button for back-button focus. Also, only one control dial at the top.
  3. Viewfinder could have been improved.
  4. Poor battery life, with the battery rated at only around 400 shots on one charge.
The Bottom Line: 

There have been numerous Rebels, all with small improvements being made every year. But the T6i goes a bit further, with major improvements in the sensor, the AF system and the metering sensors. Although there have been many changes, which make the camera a lot better than previous Rebels, the T6i fails to beat any other camera in its class. It simply matches them in image and video quality. The 19-point AF system is very good, but not exactly class-leading. Also, the Hybrid Live View focusing is quicker than most cameras, but not very reliable and prone to hunting in some situations.  The image quality is the best thing about the camera, with Canon maintaining its excellent skin tones in the images of T6i. If you are looking for a camera which will be easy to use and will provide good performance for general shooting, this is a camera worth checking out.

SCORE: 7/10 Buy Canon T6i Rebel on Amazon

About Reinis Fischer

Reinis Fischer is a Drupal Developer who works and lives in Tbilisi. A programmer by day and a writer by night. Or Vice Verse. Covers topics on Travel, Restaurant Reviews, Finances, Blogging e.t.c. Loves DIY and recently is excelling as a main constructor in his latest project - home remodeling.
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