As an aspiring filmmaker and producer, I always seem to find myself surrounded by film equipment. Whether it’s the TriCaster at MHS that we use for live events or the HD cameras I use for almost everything, I can’t see a great day without doing something film-related.

And now, I’ve added a new piece of technology to my “filmmaker’s arsenal”: The Canon EOS REBEL T5i. The T5i is a professional-use camera that shoots photos and videos in 1080p (HD). It features a rotating touch screen and the ability to change lenses (known by many as DSLR cameras) to get the best shot possible. I found myself ordering the T5i because I needed to get some more equipment as my production skills grew. I’ve spent the last year or two working solely with a Canon Vixia HF-R600 camcorder. And don’t get me wrong, the R600 is a great entry-level camcorder, but after you film for a while, you need an actual camera.

I had also just happened to have watched a tech review from Casey Neistat on Canon cameras versus Sony cameras. I’ve been a long-time fan of Canon, but I wanted to see what his thoughts were. After checking out the Canon cameras that Neistat had and realizing that they cost near $2,500 (and also knowing that that price was way too much for what I needed), I started looking up some lower-priced Canon cameras. By lower-priced, I meant under $1,000.

(You can watch the tech review I watched at the end of this post. While I don’t vlog, I still found the video helpful)

Then, after getting some advice from Chris Messineo of NJ Film School (an excellent film school by the way), I decided to go with the T5i. The EOS REBEL T6i was also something I considered, but Chris recommended the T5i because it’s cheaper and still has 90% of the functions that the T6i has. So after hitting Place Order on Best Buy’s website, I found the T5i sitting inside of a massive package at my doorstep on Thursday. The camera comes with an 18-55mm lens. It’s an entry-level lens that comes with the camera, but I needed something better than that, so I ordered a 55-250mm zoom lens along with the camera.

The EOS T5i furthest left, followed by the 55-250mm zoom lens, and then the 18-55mm kit lens on the right.
The packages that the equipment arrived in. Left: the EOS REBEL T5i, and right: The 55-250mm zoom lens (shot on the T5i)

Right out of the box, you notice that the T5i has a lot to offer. Its shape and design are sleek and compact, and it feels great when you’re holding it for photos. The leathery feel on the grips are great, and the camera feels very durable.

It is also extremely easy to use with both the options to use the touch screen or the buttons to navigate menus. The touch screen also provides pinpoint focusing since all you need to do is touch where you want the lens to focus. Additionally, in select camera modes, you can preview an image before you actually take it. This is useful for photos where you want to blur a specific part of the image (like the background).

Since I primarily use cameras for cinematography and not photography, I obviously checked out the recording abilities on this camera, and they’re quite impressive. Recording is super easy, and the quality of both the video and the audio are excellent.

I took the T5i outside earlier this week to take some photos, and while they weren’t that great because of the snow, here’s some sample images using both the zoom lens and the kit lens outside:

In conclusion, the T5i is a great camera to use for both photography and cinematography. It has all the features that you need and isn’t overly expensive for its abilities (this cost around $600 and the zoom lens was an additional $150). It’s definitely a go-to camera for almost all of your needs.

And for those of you who want to watch the Casey Neistat review, here ya go:

Daniel Sirota
Daniel Sirota is a junior (18-19) at MHS and the Director of Live Events for Studio 462. He is also a writer for TAPinto of Millburn-Short Hills. He generally works behind the scenes producing our livestreams, but you can also listen to him commentating on various events every so often.