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I myself have never had a huge insight into photography, nor was I very efficient with a camera of any sort.
Having trained in the art of 'Freerunning / Parkour', I wanted to capture some fantastic shots of myself, and ultimately record myself a showreel (a compilation of clips assembled into a Movie-like production)
The camera itself is very easy to use and learning additional functions on the camera are simplistic and not confusing.
After having spent very little time with the camera I had learnt about many of its functions and was quickly acquiring a firm grasp over how to use the camera.
Its picture quality is impeccable, and I have compared pictures that I have taken on this camera with the same pictures taken by my friend on its Nikon equivalent, and we both agreed that the Canon excels in this class.
This camera was best put to use by me when I began to film on it. I spent many months using it literally every day for filming high speed clips of me jumping and flipping. I have not a single complaint about its filming quality what so ever; all the clips are incredibly sharp and pristine. It really served its purpose.
One thing I would complain about is its plastic shell, the entire camera is crafted from plastic.
Now I would say that this is a negative as if the camera were to fall it would be damaged due to its plastic shell, but I am certain this would also apply to a camera composed of any other materials as well. Cameras are not meant to be dropped, so that is not something I am really going to factor into my evaluation.
Being a mid-range camera it really served its purpose quite well and I have had nothing but joy from using this camera.
If you are interested in viewing what was filmed by me on this camera, YouTube 'Power-up Showreel', it will be the video right at the top. (I hope I am not violating any thing by this suggestion, if so - please let me know!)
Hope you enjoyed the review.
Having previously used a Canon 400D, I wanted to upgrade to the 550D. This upgrade, in terms of features, the 550D is very good value; as well as the now standard Live View that new Canon DSLRs have, the 550D adds full HD video capability. Even though this shouldn't be considered as a camcorder replacement, it is good enough for any person who just wants to record a special moment in HD.
The still picture capability of the 550D is very good for a camera, boasting a very similar sensor to the semi-pro 7D. The result is tremendously fine detail, aided by the high pixel count (18MP), and good noise performance up to 800 ISO. Whilst no high quality pictures should ideally be taken using ISO sensitivities above this, it does allow pictures to be taken in remarkably little light.
Whilst the features of the 550D are tremendous, one word of warning - the outer casing of the 550D has a plastic feel to it, which coming from the 400D, seems to be a downgrade. This, however, has made the camera lighter than previous models.
If you can stand this somewhat cheap exterior, the 550D has great things to offer inside, since the cheapest is around £10.
This was my first ever SLR camera, and it did not let me down. Canon have a reputation for quality products and this was no exception - it was very easy to get the hang of, the picture quality is fantastic compared to Fujifilm digital cameras I have used in the past and it is easy to find it online at a reasonable price. There are many options regarding lenses that can be added on to the main body of this camera ensuring that your images will be of a professional quality no matter what the subject matter is. The only downside I have found to this camera is that is struggles somewhat in very bright light, but other than that my images have come out crisp and with true colours. In addition, this camera is small enough to be easily portable, and it will not get in the way if you wanted to use it for a holiday, yet it is professional enough to be used for sporting events or weddings.
I bought this camera as a treat for myself at the end of my university degree. The reason being I'd trialled and tested it on many film projects during my three year film production course and found it to be a quality camera. It is very versatile, suited to both photographers and film makers. The video quality is full 1080 HD with excellent field of depth meaning the shots you can achieve often come out more visually stunning than any other camera I've trialled. This is also a great camera for beginners as it is extremely easy to navigate around. My main reason for purchasing this camera though, is the value for money. As a recently graduated student the price was a big factor in the decision making process but I feel this camera provides industry standard quality for a value focused price. Highly recommended to any photographer and / or film maker.
This camera is perfect for any photographer, amateur or professional, I have been using this camera for around a year now and the image quality is just devine. It's easy to use and easy to hold. If you want a camera that has great quality pictures and enhanced audio capabilities then this is the one for you.
The postage was very quick, around three days to arrive at my home and it came with everything it had said on the description. A great manual which goes through step by step instructions on how to get the camera setup, which modes work best for lighting and even how to enhance the macro feature. The best feature about this camera is the screen. It gives you the best clear crisp details of objects close and far away.
All in all this is the best purchase I have ever done. I am a proud owner of this camera and I hope it will serve me well on my photography journeys. Totally worth every penny.
So I bought this camera when I was starting up a Photography course at school, and it took a long time trying to decide which to get, but I eventually went with this one. Here's why.
The Canon EOS 550D takes amazing quality photos that look really professional- even a beginner photographer can take brilliant looking photos because the quality is so good! However, if you are planning on taking higher quality photos in the dark, or in the evening perhaps, I recommend getting an external flash, because the internal flash doesn't perform to the highest standard. External flashes can be quite expensive if you want a decent one, but you can shop around and get a reasonably priced one for about £40 on somewhere like Amazon, which still does the job you need it to.
The zoom is nice and easy to adjust, and has just the right zooming(?) ability for taking everyday photos- in other words, it doesn't zoom in too far, but still gets close up if you need it to. I can't remember if it came with the camera or whether it was separate, but I got the bigger zoom lens, which is absolutely brilliant for close up photos. When I was on holiday and collecting pictures for my photography course, I used this lens to take close-ups of plants and insects, and to take pictures of things in the distance.
The focus on the camera is brilliant too, and really easy to adjust. Again, the camera is also good for beginner photographers because it has the option to switch between auto and manual focus. The auto focus adjusts itself when you press lightly on the shutter button, and when it has focussed itself, it will beep and you can fully press the shutter. In fact, there is a full-auto setting on the dial on the top of the camera, on the right-hand side. When in the full-auto setting, the flash on the top of the camera will autmoatically pop up if it needs to, and to close it, you simply push it back down until it clicks.
There are several other features on this dial, including a no-flash option, portrait, distance shot, close up, sports, and of course the video option. I'm not entirely sure exactly how each of these works, but I think the close up option just allows a better focus, and the sports option increases shutter speed.
The buttons on the main face of the camera, where the screen is, can seem quite confusing, especially to a beginner. But basically, all you need to know is that the button with the 'play' symbol on brings up your photos, and the left and right arrows let you search through them. The 'bin' button lets you delete photos, the middle button, or 'set' button is how you select things. The button at the top, next to the red dot, which has a picture of a white camera with a black square on it, is how you switch between using the viewfinder and the screen to take a photo. When you turn the camera on, it automatically sets itself up for use through the viewfinder, but if you want to see what you're taking a picture of on the screen, you just need to press this button.
Overall, I absolutely love this camera, and would recommend it to anyone, and I hope you found my tips in this review helpful.
I'm not a professional photographer but I've owned some very nice cameras. My previous SLR was a Nikon D700, which was an amazing camera. However, with considering the £1000 price tag for the Nikon; I found that this camera provides just as clear pictures and easier, more simple use for non-professionals at a much cheaper price (around £500).
I've owned the 550D for 2 years now and I originally bought it to take some great pictures while travelling. It has never let me down, very reliable and even durable. As for ease of use it is very easy to get the hang of all the features and buttons.
Some features include:
- Exposure modes incl. picture modes, aperture and shutter priority
- Flash modes
- White balancing modes incl. custom, preset, auto, white balancing bracket
- Focussing modes incl. manual, continuous AF, one shot AF
- Movie mode and Audio Recording
- Really big 3" LCD monitor
- 18.0 Megapixels
- Continuous shooting
The continuous shooting, while I personally find it not as quick as the Nikon, captures some really nice shots. However I find that without the right lighting the picture can become grainy while using this feature.
It is even compatible with non-canon type lenses. This can be very useful as the canon brand lenses are very expensive and the cheaper ones do just as good of a job for someone not using it professionally. I found it very easy to upload all my pictures straight to my laptop with the usb that it came with. No overcomplicated software or long waits uploading them. The only thing I've really had a problem with is battery life as I have to recharge it every 1-2 hours if I'm out taking pictures.
Overall, if you're looking for a high quality, long lasting camera that takes HD pictures and isn't very expensive, this is the one.
This is one of the best DSLR's I have ever used to film a music video, it is also quality for taking pictures as well. There is no loss of resolution when zoomed in due to the 18 megapixel sensor in the camera. The ISO level can go quite high before noise is produced in a photo or video. There are many functions in this camera that would help a film maker for example an adapter for an external microphone, you have the possibility to change the functions (such as ISO, shutter speed and aperture) while filming manually. As well as this you can use Auto while filming making this DSLR user friendly. It isn't too heavy nor too light so it won't make your neck feel really sore after a long day of carrying it on a day trip out for photography. Also the build quality of it is superb and will not break easily if you drop out. 10/10
Pretty much anyone with a minuscule amount of creativity within them has gone through a photography phase, whether it was in school, college or as a hobby in later life - Cameras are a brilliant invention, capturing the very essence of life.. and all that jargon. However for some, its more than a phase and becomes a necessity for work, ideas, evidence, beauty etc. It was evident that my college work benefited greatly with the aid of a digital SLR, which at the time was a typically beginner/hobbyist type camera - the cheap and cheery Nikon D40. Irrespective of its simplicity, it got the job done and played its part in my completion of the course. The Canon 550D was my 2nd Digital SLR camera purchase to date, bought manufacturer refurbished in June 2011 for a very reasonable price of £377 online through eBay with the standard 18-55mm lens and accessory kit. I acquired this one, envious of the HD video capabilities, higher mega pixel, greater specs, price drop and generally because I see Canon as a superior brand (I also have an old analogue Canon). It was clear to me that it had much more to offer and wouldn't struggle as much as the Nikon alternative did at times. Safe to say I traded up.
Also known as the Rebel T1i, this Canon rests nicely in your hands thanks to the right-handed rubber grip and being fairly light so it can easily be held one handed most of the time if you don't make use of the rubber and cotton, brand name proud 1M strap. Mostly in black, with silver trim, writing and metal connections, the 550D doesn't exactly stand out from any other SLR. It has the typical 'wheel' that goes through pre mapped modes for different environments and shooting style - each displayed with either a letter or little logos such as a head for portraits, man running for sport, mountain and cloud for landscape etc. Next to that is the on/off switch and ISO switch and selector, all neatly positioned near the shoot button which can be held in lightly for focusing. There are 2 multi function buttons - when using the display, these act as zoom in & out, but when using the view finder, act as a red dot metre that aids positioning (so not to get wonky photos) and ISO speeds. The asterix button also acts as a focus button in video mode. On top of the screen you have 2 buttons, display - to view your photo gallery - and the menu. Theres also handy delete and record buttons to instantaneously erase an image (with prompt) or start recording footage (when in correct mode). On the bottom is where the battery release are tripod screw fitting are. Left side has 3 plugins, for earphones, micro USB and HDTV cable. The right side is the compartment for the SD card.
Its also quite small at just under 13CM across and (with the standard lens with minimal extension) just over 13CM in length. The 6X5 1MP screen (which comes with a protective sticker) is bright and colourful, displaying a full menu of options readily changed. The first 2 (red) are camera lists ranging through the following: quality, flash control, shutter release, Exposure & Composition, review time, peripheral illumination, red eye, metering, custom WB (white balance), WB shift/BKT (bracketing) colour space, picture style and dust delete data. The 2nd 2 (blue) image specific lists feature options: protect images, rotate, erase, print/transfer order, histogram, slide show and image jump. Then there are 3 (yellow) inner camera settings: auto power/LCD off, file numbering, auto rotate, format, screen colour, LCD brightness, date & time, language, video system (PAL or NTSC), sensor cleaning, live view settings, custom functions, clear settings and firmware versions. There is also a green menu setting that allows for similar functions, but ultimately acts as a shortcut to most used buttons - it can be disabled. All of these options are easily accessed via a directional pad which aslo acts as a shortcut wheel for continuous shooting, WB, picture style and AF mode. Which brings us onto the auto focus. While not the most important feature, it does come in handy when you are in a rush or struggling with your vision, however it is a bit noisy and would not be appropriate for bird watching or other activities that require a quiet disposition. As with all SLR cameras though, you have the option of manual focus, found as a little switch on top of the lens with a stabilizer.
Shooting photo's is incredibly easy thanks to all the modes and functions previously mention, so much so that most of the time you merely need to find your setting, adjust light levels and you're away. Just use the large lens wheel to zoom in and out and the end wheel to focus. Shutter speeds are capable of going through 1/4000th of a second and half a minute and the ISO range is 100 - 6400 (12800). Of course, everyone has different preferences so you may customize your settings and stick to them or constantly change everything like a right obsessive professional. It has a beastly 18 megapixel sensor, far greater than many other for the price this camera goes for, 3 recording resolutions - 480, 720 and 1080p - fantastic - and built in flash. What is great though is that should you be pressed for space, you can lower the quality and size of photographs to save battery as well as take more shots. Admittedly though, the 550D does push itself as the higher resolutions can get choppy, and recording as a whole can be extremely difficult, especially when hand held as it is quite sensitive and you often end up with shaky video clips - a tripod is advised. The microphone is nothing to write home about either, but considering that this is an SLR camera, mic clarity is the last thing on your mind. Accessories with the basic package include a trusty black and white 243 page instruction manual for all your FAQ's (with images), USB connector cable, lens cap and the ever important charger. It typically takes 2 hours to recharge a completely empty battery and lasts a good amount of time, at least enough to get you through a weekend.The transfer speed of images is seamless, regardless fo SD card - I personally use an 8GB one as I normally take 100-300 photos and only shoot brief movies.
Considering the fact that mobile phones are largely becoming more and more technically advanced, you might think that a camera with video capabilities would be a bit redundant.. But when its a proper camera, the photos, needless to say, will always be superior and the HD video prospect still rivals that of a phone - a bargain under £500.
If you'd like to see some samples from this camera, feel free to visit my website:
..And if you have time to scour through videos and songs, check out some of the HD video capabilities here:
I bought this camera two and a half years ago, to do some freelance videography. After a lot of research, it appeared to be a worthy, and certainly better-priced, alternative to the flashier 5D and 7D models. And it has definitely lived up to such billing.
I must reinforce that photography has never been my primary interest in purchasing, nor using this camera. It has served me well in that regard, but I can't claim to have pushed any limits to test it. It has, however, provided me with great-looking 1080p video, a range of shooting modes and options, and the valuable option of attaching a microphone. I received a basic 18-55mm lens with it, which does well, but I'd recommend investing in high quality lenses at various desired focal lengths, rather than relying on a basic zoom lens to do the job.
The only major drawback I've experienced is that the camera is susceptible to hot temperatures and high humidity. After about 12-15 minutes of continuous shooting in a tropical climate, it will shut down. After a few seconds, you can restart it without bother. I've heard that, with a firmware update, you can adjust these settings, but I wouldn't, personally. Canon put the system in place to protect the camera, so I would trust it to do so.
As with all Canon cameras, it is relatively easy to pick up and learn, if not to master.
Overall a very impressive camera.
I don't regard myself as a 'photographer'. Even though i owned a film camera many years ago, it never made much sense (not to mention developing costs).
When on holiday recently, my trusty Panasonic TZ7 (a good camera) fell out of my pocket (i think alcohol was involved in the event) and it didn't like it because it was misbehaving.
I'd toyed with the idea of a DSLR (Digital proper camera) for quite some time, however the cost always put me off. Finally i narrowed my options down to a 'bridge' camera. These are cameras with fixed zoom lenses that offer 'manual' control (i.e. to be able to change the cameras main settings).
The EOS550D is a very popular camera - just check on youtube, there are simply hundreds of examples, tutorials and videos showing the cameras abilities.
A week ago, i discovered a video demonstrating the durability elements of Digital SLR camera which included specimens from both Canon as well as Nikon. The tests were independent and conducted by a digital camera review site. I'd never realised that these cameras are used by professionals as well as regular camera users. Wow, they are rugged beasts and are not built to be 'pretty' like todays little compacts. They are designed for photographers, yet have fully automatic modes for beginners. Intimidating at first, but also very forgiving.
I have a 17-55mm Lens as included in the 'kit'. This only equates to around 3x optical zoom, but the pictures are so incredible.
Please remember, if you're like me you'll be used to taking out your compact at night, shooting a photo only to find that there is barely anything there.. Not with this camera! I went out at night, took some pictures and got superb quality images without the use of the flash.
The camera is 18 Megapixel, but please remember that all of these megapixel numbers are getting irrelevant these days. It's THE SENSOR that matters.. and the one in the EOS550D is brilliant. It captures far more light than a compact camera can so can give you better night shots. Even indoor photos at night look clear and as they should do.
There is a price to pay though.. and it's literally that. Costing a vast amount more than a compact (i payed £590) many will say that it's just not justifiable. I must disagree. This camera is cheap because you can build on it. You can pick from a vast range of Canon and other brand compatible lenses to use with the camera. The quality is the sort of quality that you see on those commercial adverts and brochure pictures and more importantly this camera makes me actually want to learn about it, at my own pace.
I now know that all of those precious moments can be captured with superb clarity, and that the more that i learn about the camera, the better the results will be.
Don't worry about 'how do i do this' or 'what do i need to do to shoot that'.. use the many youtube tutorials around and go and buy one!!!
having looked for a long time for an SLR camera i finally took the plunge and bought this one. what can i say? this camera is so easy to use and the results are fantastic whether printing from home or from a photo shop. the quality of the pictures is so good i have enlarged several and had them printed onto canvas for gifts to friends. the only recommendation i would make is invest in a good distance lens and the one that automatically comes with these (if included) is only for short distance and becomes very restricted and frustrating when trying to capture a picture just that little bit further away. the pictures come up bright and sharp and with the automatic features this is even easier than ever. all in all i would recommend this to anyone who wants excellent results without having to struggle to achieve them. i've had mine for about 8 months now and its definitely been worth the money.
you can buy this with or without the lens. if you buy with the lens the standard will be an 18-55mm. this is ideal for close up pictures but for distance is pretty much pointless. i tried buying a seperate lens 55-200mm which is fantastic for distance however i found it very frustrating changing lenses every time. my recommendation is invest in an 18-200 lens as this is absolutely perfect close up to distance shops and negates the need for additional lenses being carried around but these can set you back around £300-£400. the lens is however well worth the extra pay. you can also buy alternate lenses which will fit the canon one make is tamron which are a lot cheaper than canons own and fit safely and securely onto the canon SLR 550D (will fit most canon SLRs). i have one of these lenses and they are brilliant.
the battery life is very good. you have to remove the battery to recharge it so it is very worth having a second battery especially if on holiday so you can use one and charge one then alternate. the only thing i would recommend is invest in a higher GB memory card when you purhcase the camera. the higher the number on the GB the more photos you can take. I use 8GB or 16GB generally.
you can use the screen to view your chosen subject rather than looking through the eye piece however i would always recommend looking through the eye piece purely due to experience - my hands are more steady when holding it close and loooking. somehow i always end up with the images slightly blurry when using the screen. this is purely down to my own skill not the camera but worth noting in case you miss that all important shot.
Always remember to back up your photos on laptop/pc/cd regularly.
what type of photos can it take?
you can change the automatic settings to lanscape, portait, low light shots, without flash (very useful when out with the family at the aquarium etc) or you can use the manual setting which i found very hard initially to get used to but worth persevering with as now i am very happy with my photos. also worth noting is that you can take full HD video using this camera but be aware that the memory on your card will be used up far quicker with video than photos.
can weigh you down after a day carrying it around but then thats the same for all SLR cameras
invest in a good lens with this camera. so worth the extra money
is a fair amount of money but well worth it the pictures speak for themselves
i would recommend putting a filter on the lens as if it gets scratched (which in my experience nearly always happens with something new) then it is far cheaper to change the filter at the end than buy a new lens
also buy a good bag to carry it in to protect it when not in use
After years of changing digital camera's each year, as nothing had been upto what i wanted (fast at taking pictures) I spent 3 months looking and researching cameras and narrowed my search down to the Nikon D90 and the Canon 550D. I purchased this DSLR 550D in new year sales and found the camera to be worth every penny. It is easy to use and change the settings. After 2 months I was taking the kind of pictures I wanted. Always good pictures to keep as family memories. The main reason I purchased this instead of the Nikon was due to the D90 being 2 years old and I wanted something newer. Also this camera can recored HD video which is a big bonus. But like all cameras you have to make sure you have a good and fast memory card or the camera will not perform as you want it to. Also it is worth buying some good extra lens.
I was looking for a camera for my photography course that is due to start this year and being a student I did not want to spend anything over £500.
After spending quite a while sifting through various reviews from other people and my experience with Nikon cameras, I decided to stick with Canon as it was what my modelling shots were done on a few years ago.
I looked at the model my shots were taken on and it was a Canon EOS 5D Mark II which was *GASP* nearly two grand to buy. So I looked through the EOS range and got a few pointers from fellow film makers and veterans of SLR cameras. Some suggested for my money the Canon EOS 1100D (about £380 cheapest price) which is 12 Megapixels and has HD video recording but no external input for audio for making films.... eeek. Not very professional. I already have a 12 megapixel Samsung digital camera so why would I want that? Also the screen for the 1100D was not hi-res enough to get the idea of your image... Another friend then suggested the Canon EOS 550D and it looked like my saviour, I then searched for prices and screamed... £600 Body only! NOO!
That same friend let me in on a very good trick. Look up the model name from the Japanese model and American model as they are exactly the same, just a different name but a hell of a lot cheaper. In this case the Canon EOS 550D becomes in America: Canon EOS Rebel t2i, and in Japan: Canon EOS Kiss X4. The body and the lens and the entire kit then drops down to £430. Bargain. And you can import these from ebay at that price, no need to auction, you can just "Buy it now". Score!
This model is 18 megapixels and obviously you can set it to lower megapixels to get more use out of your memory card, this camera is also SD compatible which is great.
For the amateur photographer or a total beginner there is of course the Auto Focus settings but why would you want that if you have a beautiful manual lens kit to play with?
It has a wide range of shutter speeds ranging from 30 seconds to 1/4000th of a second and a 63 point metering system like the pro 7D which is a step up from the 35 metering of the 500D.
One minus point is that adjusting the white balance is quite a task as it has only 6 pre sets and there is no dial in colour temperature, but this can be jigged about with on a computer after images are taken of course.
Other advanced features include the Auto Lighting Optimiser function, which helps to preserve shadow and highlight detail in high-contrast lighting situations and this model also shoots in RAW to optimise this feature.
One area where the 550D does score major points is in high-ISO noise control. Shots at ISO 1600 are comparable with the results from the EOS 5D MkII- the camera I originally wanted and the best for ISO control, and even at ISO 3200 shots are perfectly usable, although quality does break down at the 6400 ISO maximum setting as expected when using a camera to its full capacity.
There is a pop up flash but this most of the time has to be manually put up in low lighting occassions... and if you are shooting in a studio say for a fashion shoot, I would suggest a better flash kit.
This camera has the ability to shoot in full 1080 HD video and with an external socket to record audio as the microphone on the front is not very powerful. It can shoot at the following:
1,920 x 1,080 resolution video at 30fps or 1,280 x 720 resolution at 50fps.
Word has it that the first season of the television series HOUSE M.D was filmed with this very camera, so it cannot be that shoddy can it?
Well when quickly scanning or moving the camera the video does distort vertically so half the image is disconnected from its other half momentarily but thats just what is to be expected from modern technology. When filming something professionally or properly you take shots and put them together and don't usually pan or jerk about with a camera anyway, so most of the time this is not an issue.
This is very clear and is of really high resolution so your images are even in HD. The menu is accessed with the D pad and its very easy to use. Hence why this is a great entry level camera for the beginner who is becoming a semi-pro.
The camera has a non slip body so you cannot easily drop it, though it is advised to use the strap provided (also I feel wearing the strap puts my mind at ease and makes me feel more professional!) And the build quality of the camera is excellent and surprisingly compact for all its power.
The battery does last quite a while, but it is a very good idea to buy a spare battery, fully charged up to slot in at the last minute as I do find the battery guage a tad misleading at times.
This is the perfect beginner DSLR camera but do watch out for the price, I urge you to shop around and aim to buy it for under £500 so you get your money's worth. It has the strength of a professional 5D but only slightly fewer features.