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on 18 August 2015
I'm a keen photographer, I've owned Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Linhof, Ikelite, Panasonic and Bronica equipment and I've used formats from tiny camera phones up to and beyond medium format film. I don't write from an armchair - I've shot from the frozen north of Iceland to the back of the Queensland Outback and underwater from The Red Sea to The Blue Hole via Pacific Atolls, The Indian Ocean and the Great Barrier Reef. I've dived a coral encrusted shot down bomber in 50m and hung out of helicopters and microlights over the rain forest, all with a camera around my neck. I've taken bad photos with the best gear and great photos with an iphone. I think that the most important thing about a camera is how much time it spends with you.

I've had this camera for a week now and feel compelled to write a quick review because it's deep down fab!. I've used it mainly with the 55-250 lens but I also have the 10-18 and 18-55. I've also used the 10-18 for some interior shots.

I don't shoot video. If you primarily shoot video you probably won't buy this camera.

If you shoot stills then this camera does almost everything most more expensive cameras can do. In my view its better than a similar size Nikon because Canon have a range of inexpensive and sharp lenses that cover all focal lengths from 10mm at the wide end to 250mm. Nikon have lenses that cover approximately this range too but they cost and weigh more. You can get this body and three zoom lenses for around £700. If you have Nikon lenses and no Canon lenses buy a Nikon. If you're starting out buy this.

It's better than mirrorless because it has simple controls that are easy to use and because you can buy sharp lenses for less money. If you want complex controls and know how to use them you probably won't buy a mirrorless camera but you might by this one. I have mirrorless 4/3 cameras. The image quality is not as good as with this APS C Canon. Any mirrorless camera that captures images well as this Canon will cost a lot more. Mirrorless will shoot a lot faster but in my experience there's no point in shooting faster unless you want to spend more time afterwards culling all the bad shots you'll take because of electronic finder and shutter lags. I'm not sold on mirrorless.

If you want control it's all there on the touch screen. Nothing you need to change often is buried too deep in sub menus. The touch screen is great, it pinch zooms and sweep pans like a living thing, just like my iphone. Mainly I shoot in priority modes with Auto ISO. I don't use live-view, the viewfinder is good. If you choose shutter priority with a fast shutter the camera will most often select the fastest aperture in preference to increasing the ISO. This can make close focusing critical with the 55-250 zoom so I usually manually set the aperture down a stop or two to get more depth and shoot in AV mode. That's how I took these shots of birds and butterflies (in my local park).

In my view there are only two things you need to pay more for: higher resolution, if you want to make small crops or really big prints, and custom settings buttons, if you want to take photos of different types of subject without having to faff around changing everything in menus. Thing is though that this camera is so small and light that you could carry two with different set ups and they'd be little more cumbersome or expensive than one more highly specified, heavier model. You can buy 8 of these for the price of one 5d mk3, which would not give you much more resolution, if you want enough resolution to make a print twice the width and height that this one can make then you'll need four times as many good pixels or getting on for 80MB. If you can afford a PhaseOne digital back and if you've got a crew to carry it you'll still want one of these for your days off. This is the whole beauty of this camera, even with the 55-250mm lens it weighs only 800g so you can walk miles with it hung over your neck and shoulder and you won't notice it's there. It's so cheap that if you drop it in the sea you can afford another. In two years it will be out of date and worthless. So what! you can buy the next one, which will be even better. Right now, for most people, this takes great photos way beyond the technical quality you'll need. What more do you need to know?

The autofocus is almost instantaneous. You don't need more autofocus points than the nine in this camera, more are a nightmare dreamed up by people in marketing who've worked out that higher numbers sell more cameras to people who don't know better. Normally, I turn off all the autofocus points except the one in the middle, this way I can press and hold quick and I don't have to keep telling the camera what part of the image I want to focus so I nail more shots. (The Canon EOS 30 of the late 90's had a great trick, I had one and it used to know where I was looking by sensing the position of my pupil, it then locked focus bang on target. That was a cheap camera with astonishing technology that worked, I don't know why Canon don't bring it back.)

Back to the 100D. The in camera Jpegs are nearly always spot on. I've set mine up to shoot RAW and Jpeg but I find I only need to edit a RAW file when I've made a bad exposure. When I've under-exposed there's about 4 stops detail in the shadows I can pull out if I don't mind some noise, if I've overexposed no camera can help. I add some extra sharpening and saturation in the camera settings. Mostly the Jpegs are great.

I am thrilled with this purchase. I'm always going to be tempted to trade up but I'm going to try and resist because this little camera is a complete treasure and that means it's always with me and never an over-bloated burden. Rock on!
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44 Comments| 210 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 10 August 2017
Bought this for my daughter for Christmas and she loves it! Perfect for beginners and quality is amazing.
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on 30 January 2017
Wonderful piece of kit, I know you can get smaller devices with perhaps better specs but it is nice to hold a camera and for it to feel like a camera.
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on 16 May 2017
Really nice camera very pleased
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on 2 April 2017
Great! Simply great. Got some masterpieces with this.
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on 8 September 2017
Seems to be an excellent piece of equipment. Lots of features to get to know. Looking forward to familiarising myself with them.
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VINE VOICEon 23 April 2014
As an enthusiastic amateur, I've long been searching for a decent second camera for when I don't want to take my big DSLR and heavy lenses out. Having been disappointed with the canon s95 (not impressive at all) and Fuji x10 (great in good light, terrible in bad light), I picked up an official canon refurb 100d.

I have been absolutely blown away by this camera. Paired with either the 40mm f2.8 pancake lens, or my 50mm f1.4, it is amazing. The low light performance is brilliant, and shooting at iso 3200 gives almost noise free images. I'd go as far as to say that in low light, it's as good as my full frame 5D2. Yes, the frame rate is not quite as fast, there's no weather proofing and the controls are not quite as good as on the higher end models, but (and this is a big but) - it is so compact you will want to take it everywhere.

Critically for me, it feels and operates like a DSLR should - the viewfinder is brilliant (which is a key reason I haven't embraced mirrorless CSC technology), and the touch screen makes function selection very fast. Battery life is very good, and using SD cards means storage is much cheaper than the compact flash that my 5D2 took.

The images I captured with the 100d were indistinguishable from my 5D shots (not just to me, but to at least 5 other photographers I showed them to), and the experience of living with a camera this small is just fabulous.

As an entry into the world of DSLRs, this would be a great purchase. Well specced and easy to use. As a second camera body, you'll have gathered from my review, it's so good that it is becoming my only camera body.

Highly recommended.
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on 15 January 2015
I see another reviewer put this up against his 5D2 - well I also bought this as a lightweight second body - for extreme travel photography, and as a fun thing for my son to play with between trips. So today I put it up against my 5D3 with some good zoom lenses (not prime). I also put this glass onto the 100D body, and took some shots in the sunny snow, and then some detailed studio shots. Both sets have left me deeply worried.

This little camera with its cheap entry level zoom lens out performed my 5D3 in terms of sharpness, colour depth and general picture satisfaction at every level. When I put the L series glass (16-35, 24-105 70-200) onto the 100D the shots with its own 18-55 were better throughout. When I put them onto the 5D3 - the 100D with its own lens also performed better.(I cannot put the 18-55 onto the 5D3 as it its EF-S).

On the other hand, I personally do not like the touch screen, especially the fact that I cannot turn it off, and I am not fond all the fancy filters. And it is not a sturdy build, my 5D3 has bumped around Africa and worked at -40C in Siberia without a hitch.

But I was absolutely shocked at the quality of the images you get out of this little beast.

Also, it is the perfect size for my 9 yr old son, who is setting up "still lives with teddy bears" at this very moment, absolutely delighted that "his" new camera takes better pictures than mine!!!
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on 10 July 2016
Bought this to replace my ancient 1000D . Was thinking between this one and EOS 1300D as price was similar but 1300D has Wi-Fi option, but when for 100D as it has much better specs. Really good quality camera, all my existing EF-S lenses fit perfectly, very small and compact, smallest SLR camera cannon can offer. Won't go in to technical details, but if you already have SLR camera similar to 1200D and thinking to upgrade to mid range/professional this would be the one to go. Has good user interface that gives handy tips for every option and setting on the came as it's selected, so great way to learn common camera setting when moving away from automatic modes or trying to achieve that specific setting.
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on 6 April 2014
I personally moved up to this model from a D350.
It's very nice quality and well put together and apparently the smallest and lightest digital SLR available. This makes it easy to use although I find it a little bit short on the left side of the lens - but this is a personal opinion and maybe as I has the D350 which is much wider.
The pleasure from the weight saving is much less strain on my shoulder from the weight saving! The picture quality is excellent and obviously much better with prime lenses than with the kit lens supplied. The kit lens is not to be sniffed at though, it has a very goo optical stabiliser which works really well and is of a useful range.
The ISO settings are very wide and the amount of tuneable parameters on this camera lend it to a semi-professional environment too. The aspect ratio is selectable and the video function is extremely good. When taking still shots during video capture there are some hiccups in the video stream but there will be as it carries out exposure checks before the shot.

I'd recommend this camera for the ease of use and the touch screen features and it's ability to go from completely automatic everything to complete manual control in however many stages you desire.
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