Canon’s Rebel T4i (EOS 650D)
By Ogunleye George
These days, smartphones are threatening to push traditional point-and-shoot cameras into early retirement. With much ado to flexibility, mobility and multi-functional/cross platform features, pocketcams are not the only category under siege. Lightweight mirrorless cameras like Sony's NEX series are threatening to replace the traditional single-lens reflex (SLR), and this is giving manufacturers a run for their money. Although, pros go for a more purpose-built tool like a full-frame digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) with loads of complex physical controls, but to compete with cheaper, sleeker shooters in the consumer realm, companies like Canon are finding the need to make their cameras easier to use, and more useful as well.
Canon's new EOS Rebel T4i (EOS 650D) proves the point as canon’s lowly budget model, however, the 18-megapixel APS-C (Advanced Photo System type-C) shooter adds a number of features never before seen on any Canon DSLR, these features include a new focal system that allows for continuous autofocus during video recording, a stereo microphone array, and a touchscreen to control for almost every setting on the camera.
These features have potentially edged up the simplicity and flexibility required for professional imagery not only pros, and also made an amateur reel out images like a pro.
Canon's Rebel T4i could make a perfect substitute for camcorder with reference to its touchscreen control that makes it more like a smartphone. The likes of 5D Mark II, 7D and T2i clearly edified Canon's reputation for quality video capture, but the T4i's additions could push it over the top.
The Canon T4i has simple gadgetry design; it is black, bulbous, and utilitarian making it look and feel exactly like the T3i, its predecessor. It is a predominantly well-built camera weighing about 1kg with 18-135mm Stepping motor (STM) lens; it is firm and unyielding as all four fingers fits on the T4i's grip. Although, the earlier T2i has soft rubber grip with a wider, rounder design that could hang from a single hand without any worry that it might fall.
Switching into video mode with one hand on T3i and T2i requires a painstakingly rigor which is not so for T4i because its features are built into the power switch; slide it from Off to On and pushing it one click further sets it into filming mode.
T4i's pentamirror viewfinder’s view is slightly dimmer than real life but still gives up to 95 percent of what the camera is aiming towards.
T4i 1.04-million-dot has a 3-inch LCD panel much like that of a smartphone but with a high refresh rate and pretty stellar viewing angles. The LCD etch its mark in timeline as the first touchscreen on a DSLR. It could serve as a viewfinder with photos lined up in live view mode. The LCD housing is protractible and tilts up to 180 degrees or 90 degrees down towards the subject. Adjusting aperture, shutter speed, pinch to zoom or exposure can be done by simple touch on the LCD.
Keeping the primary controls at the fingertips is one amazing thing about the T4i; however, one would still have to dig through screens little-used settings with on-screen popups that explains settings and modes.
The Q key keeps you from changing settings if you accidentally brush the touchscreen with a cheek or ear. The T4i has some creative filters for image which includes miniature effect, soft focus, fisheye, and water painting effect that can be used to make pictures look like watercolor. T4i shoots 1080p or 720p DSLR video at 60 frames per second and full-res JPEG pictures with image stabilization. Its battery life is pretty healthy.