Canon T5 vs. T5i: DSLR Analysis

Canon T5 vs. T5i: DSLR Analysis

Canon’s Rebel line of cameras was first released in 2003 and has been the entry point to DSLR photography for many people ever since. Canon has continued to make upgrades and improvements to these popular cameras, making high-quality DSLRs accessible for everyone. The T5 and T5i are solid cameras that make good use of Canon’s many years of experience making solid entry-level DSLRs.

The T5i was released in March 2013 as an upgrade to the popular T4i. The T5 was introduced almost a year later with a more accessible price point. While these cameras are very similar in a lot of ways, there are a few key differences between them.

The T5 is a solid piece of equipment for entry-level users but the T5i features a few upgrades that may make it a more attractive option for some consumers. The main advantages the T5i has over the T5 are its flip screen, faster burst rate, and improved autofocus system. Whether these features are enough to convince you to drop more cash on the T5i depends on what kind of shooter you are and where your photography aspirations lie.

Canon T5 vs T5i

Canon T5 Canon T5i
Camera Canon T5 Canon T5i
Date Announced 11-Feb-14 21-Mar-13
Price $400 (lens included) $650 (body only)
Format APS-C APS-C
Resolution 18 MP 18 MP
Max Resolution 5184 x 3456 5184 x 3456
Shutter Speeds 1/4000 to 30 seconds 1/4000 to 30 seconds
Storage 1 SD card 1 SD card
LCD 3″ rear screen 3″ flip touchscreen
ISO Range 100-6400 100-6400
Extended ISO Range 100-12800 100-12800
Battery 1x LP-E10 Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery Pack 1x LP-E8 Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery Pack
Shots Per Charge 500 550
Burst Rate 3 FPS 5 FPS
Flash Sync Speed 1/200 second 1/200 second
Autofocus Points 9, 1 cross-type 9, all cross-type
AF Modes Automatic (A)
Continuous-servo AF (C)
Manual Focus (M)
Single-servo AF (S)
Automatic (A)
Continuous-servo AF (C)
Manual Focus (M)
Single-servo AF (S)
Multiple Exposures No No
HDR No Yes
GPS No No
Built-In WiFi No No
Body Frame Mostly Plastic Mostly Plastic
Size 5.1 x 3.9 x 3.1″ 5.1 x 3.9 x 3.1″
Weight 15 oz. 1.2 lbs.
Video Resolution 1080p at 30 FPS 1080p at 30 FPS
7 Day Rental $39 $45

Flip Screen: T5i Wins

Both of these cameras feature 3” LCD displays but that is where the similarities in screens end. While the T5 has a basic, simple screen mounted on the rear of the camera, the T5i has a swiveling touchscreen. Many photographers go their entire lives without ever using a flip screen but for those who use and love them, they are indispensable. A flip screen allows you to better frame photos taken at odd angles (like shooting above your head or on the ground) or put yourself in the frame. Vloggers and videographers especially appreciate flip screens.

Shots Per Charge: T5i Wins with 50 More Charges

The T5i has slightly better battery life than the T5. This means that you will need to interrupt your shooting to swap batteries less often and decreases the chances of running out of battery at an inopportune time. The less you have to worry about, the better!

Burst Rate: T5i Wins with 5 FPS

Burst rate is the number of frames that a camera can take in a second. A fast burst rate increases the chances that you will capture the exact moment you want, especially when shooting quickly moving objects. The T5 is a very good entry-level camera but its burst rate is a very low 3 frames per second (FPS). The T5i, on the other hand, can shoot at a rate of 5 FPS, which is on par with many of Canon’s professional-level full frame cameras.

Autofocus: T5i Wins with 9 Cross-Type Autofocus Points

cross-type-autofocus-t5-t5i

Most modern DSLRs have decent autofocus (AF) systems but some are better than others. This is one of those situations. Both of these cameras have a 9-point autofocus system but the difference between them is significant. The AF system on the T5 is comprised of 9 autofocus points with only one being cross-type while the T5i’s 9 autofocus points are entirely cross-type. Cross-type points are better able to detect the changes in contrast that help a camera focus on an object. This means that the T5i will be better able to find focus and lock it in on a subject.

In-Camera HDR: T5i Wins with HDR Mode

HDR-Example

High dynamic range (HDR) photography is a technique by which multiple exposures are combined to create a single image. In situations with extreme differences between the highlights and shadows, HDR allows you to expose properly for the differences in light throughout the image. Typically this is done by taking multiple shots and combining them into one image in post-processing. Some cameras, like the T5i, are able to do this in-camera with HDR mode. In-camera HDR capabilities are usually not a deal breaker but it can be a nice function to have.

Weight: T5 Wins

Carrying a DSLR around all day can be tiring. The lighter your camera is, the better your hands, arms, and neck will feel if you’re spending long days shooting. Weighing in at under a pound, the T5 is a very light option.

T5 is lighter by 4 ounces. This is not a huge difference compared to the T5i but if your hands or arms get tired of shooting, it may be helpful.

Price: T5 Wins

Both the T5 and T5i are well-priced DSLRs but the T5 is significantly less expensive, especially when you consider that a lens is included. If your primary concern is price, the T5 is the winner.

Summary

The Canon T5 and T5i are entry-level cameras designed to be good starting points for beginner DSLR users or those on a budget. The T5i’s improved autofocus system and faster burst rate make it a better option for people who plan to take pictures of quickly moving subjects or anyone whose subjects demand faster autofocus. The flip screen on the T5i makes it a better choice for videographers, vloggers, and those who love to take selfies. The T5i is a versatile, high-quality DSLR that can grow with its users.

The T5 is a good choice for people who want a good DSLR and are on a tight budget. The T5 is considerably less expensive than the T5i and comes with a lens when purchased by a retailer. If you just want to dabble in photography and aren’t ready to commit a larger amount of money to a camera, the T5 is a solid choice. What it lacks in features compared to the T5i it makes up for in price. The T5’s lighter weight also makes it an attractive option for a lot of people.

These cameras both compete directly with the excellent entry-level offerings from Nikon. The T5’s closest competitor in the Nikon line is the D3300, which has a faster burst rate and improved battery life but costs a good bit more. The T5i takes on Nikon’s D5300 which has built in WiFi, better low light capabilities, and more autofocus points. Remember that if you’re having trouble deciding you can always rent a couple cameras to see which is best for you! If you’re still searching for more options, take a peek as the battle continues with our guide to the best Canon DSLR camera or our comparison guide for the Canon 6D vs 5D Mark II.

Once you’ve found the perfect fit for you, make sure the rest of your gear is good to go and take a peek at our guide for the best wide angle lens for Canon. It never hurts to be over informed and get your hands on the gear before making a big purchase!

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Vivian Liu specializes in family and pet photography. She also spent 2 years as a photographer for Rebuilding Together Peninsula, which rehabilitates homes and community facilities for low-income homeowners and neighborhoods. Her passion is making photography accessible to everyone with straightforward recommendations and approachable tutorials.

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