The1300D is the first entry-level model in Canon’s line-up to offer Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity. The camera is pitched at beginners, and replaces 2014’s 1200D with a number of subtle improvements. As well as the smart-device integration, there’s an enhanced processor to speed up the camera’s performance and a new LCD offers increased screen resolution. With an attractive price-tag of just £290 without a lens, is this the perfect starter camera for newcomers to photography?
The 1300D shares the same 18MP APS-C sized sensor as its predecessor, complete with a 1.6x crop factor which magnifies focal lengths. The resolution is ample enough to apply heavy crops when editing or make A2 sized prints, and a low-pass filter is included to combat moiré. The sensor is partnered by the DIGIC 4+ image processor, and the engine has been fine-tuned to make the camera 60% faster at processing and focusing. The maximum burst rate is still capped to a fairly pedestrian 3fps, but the enhanced processor means the 1300D can keep shooting for an impressive 1110 JPEGs. The 1200D could only manage 69 JPEGs when shooting continuously, so this is a substantial improvement. The ISO range also remains the same, offering a sensitivity of 100-6400, which can be expanded to ISO 12,800.
While the improved DIGIC 4+ image processor offers a speedier focusing performance, the 1300D retains the same nine-point AF system with a cross-type sensor at its centre. To connect the camera to smart devices, the 1300D includes both Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Communication). This means you can instantly transfer images to your smartphone or tablet and then share pics online without the need for a computer. The free Camera Connect app also allows you to remotely control your camera.
The rear 3in LCD has also been upgraded from a 460k-dot screen on the 1200D to a 960k-dot resolution on the 1300D, for a
sharper and more detailed view of your images. The screen doesn’t tilt or twist though, and there’s no touchscreen functionality as found on some more advanced DSLRs. To help beginners take better pictures, Canon has developed Scene Intelligent Auto, which detects the type of subject you’re shooting and selects the optimum exposure settings. There are also plenty of creative filters – like Toy Camera, Miniature and Fisheye – to add art effects to your images. The 1300D is also capable of shooting Full HD video at 30fps, but there’s no microphone port to expand the video capabilities.
Build & handling
The body is constructed from carbon/glass fibre and polycarbonate resin, making it strong yet lightweight, and tips the scales at just 5g more than its forebear at 485g. The body has been slightly redesigned, as the dimensions differ by a millimetre or two, but there’s no difference when comparing the buttons and dials to the 1200D. The camera is comfortable in the hand, with a rubberised texture and deep finger grip making it steady to hold, and a control layout that feels ergonomic and intuitive. The AF system performed well during tests, locking onto subjects in a range of light conditions, but the low number of AF points is limiting.
While we’re relying on Canon’s own test shots from the 1300D, the images display a pleasing image quality, with excellent colours and detail. The 1200D performed well at high ISOs, and we expect the 1300D to be just as good, if not better. The 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II kit lens offers 4 stops of image stabilisation, which helps keep camera shake at bay at slower speeds.
The 1300D is a great camera for those looking for their first DSLR, and at £370 with the 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II lens offers exceptional value for money. While most of the updates to the entry-level model are modest, the addition of Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity are certainly welcome, making this camera fit for 2016. Alternatively, Canon’s smallest ever DSLR, the 100D, is available for £279 and also offers an 18MP sensor and a touchscreen.
- Camera: Canon 1300D
- Price: £290 (body only), £370 with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II kit lens
- Effective resolution: 18MP
- Sensor: 22.3x14.9mm APS-C CMOS
- Crop factor: 1.6x
- Processor: DIGIC 4+
- Kit lens: 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II
- LCD: 3in 920k-dot
- Viewfinder: Pentamirror with approx. 95%
- frame coverage
- Autofocus: 9-point (cross-type at centre)
- ISO: 100-6400 (expands to 12,800)
- Shooting speed: 3fps
- Video: Full HD at 30fps
- Pop-up flash: Yes, GN 9.2
- Other features: Wi-Fi, NFC, SD
- card slot, HDMI and high speed USB
- Battery life: 500 shots
- Card type: SD, SDHC, SDXC
- Size (WxHxD): 129x101x78mm
- Weight: 485g
- Web: www.canon.co.uk
This review was first published in the May 2016 issue of Practical Photography - download back issues here.