Impressions of the Canon EOS 1200D

According provided by camera Canon EOS 1200D (aka T5, X70) body many thanks to the official representative of Canon in Ukraine.

Canon EOS 1200D review

Canon EOS 1200D without a lens (Canon 1200D body option)

Canon EOS 1200D is a very simple but good amateur SLR camera, was introduced in February 2014 and became the third model in Canon's line of the simplest digital SLR cameras. This line includes Canon 1000D, 1100D and the Canon 1200D from this review.

Canon EOS 1200D

Canon EOS 1200D

In this case, 'simple' does not mean bad. The Canon 1200D has pretty much everything to take great shots! In addition, the camera uses a matrix on 17.9 MP, which for the first time (in 2009) could be found in a very productive camera - Canon 7D. Five years later, Canon decided to install a matrix from the legendary "seven" in one of the simplest cameras. If we discard all the pixel-by-pixel comparisons of spherical aberrations in a vacuum, we can say that the image quality for amateur shooting with Canon 5D will be no worse than with Canon 1200D cameras. 550D, 600D, 60D which are supposed to use the same matrix. If you do not take into account the updated processor, which allows for cameras Canon 650D, 700D и 100D If you use higher ISOs, then at low and medium ISOs, the last three cameras will produce an image very similar to the Canon 1200D. I do not extol the Canon 1200D baby, rather, I just emphasize once again the fact that the latest amateur Canon cameras use modifications of the same matrix, and to be honest, after Canon 700D I do not see any difference in the picture between it and the Canon 1200D (synthetic tests confirm this).

Canon EOS 1200D

Canon EOS 1200D

Canon EOS 1200D can use ISO range from 100 to 6400 units. In the Custom Functions 'C.Fn' menu, the ISO range can be expanded to an 'H' value equivalent to ISO 12.800. If Highlight Priority is enabled in Custom Functions 'C.Fn' menu, the minimum ISO that can be selected is 200 and ISO 'H' is no longer enabled.

The camera has an automatic ISO function that can be turned on / off and set the maximum allowable light sensitivity. It's funny, but even if you select a maximum ISO threshold of 6400 units, the camera will use a range of only 100 to 3200 units when shooting video. To shoot video at ISO 6400, you need to set manual control in the menu excerpts... ISO 'H' not available when shooting video :(.

In amateur cameras, I don't like the fact that the ISO value changes in steps, that is, you can choose values ​​of 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, H (12.800) and no others. The same is true for the auto ISO function, however, the maximum threshold for auto ISO is 6400 and you cannot select ISO 'H'. If you do not bother shooting in the ISO range from 3200 to 12.800, then you can get a completely usable result.

Here's what I noticed interesting: the first camera of this level - Canon 1000D had a range of photosensitivity 100-1600 (without the possibility of expansion), the second model - Canon 1100D had a range of 100-6400 (without expandability). As a result, the second model exceeded the first one 4 (!) Times (if you compare the limit value of ISO 1600 and ISO 6400), which undoubtedly is an indicator of the growth of capabilities. But the Canon 1200D in terms of ISO is practically nowhere to go Canon 1100D... The Canon 1200D still uses the 100-6400 range and as some consolation we got the option to use ISO 'H' (ISO 12.800 equivalent). However, it cannot be used for videos or photos, using the 'Auto ISO' function, or when the 'Highlight priority' function is enabled. Where is the world heading?

Canon EOS 1200D

Canon EOS 1200D

The buffer with all disabled additional functions contains:

  • about 7 frames in RAW format, while in JVI the buffer exponent is 4 frames.
  • 2 frames in JPEG L format, while the camera after the first two frames makes a small delay and then continues to shoot 2 frames with small delays.
  • 2 frames in RAW + JPEG L format, then the camera waits for data to be recorded on the card.

The number of frames in a burst with 'enhancers' disabled will greatly depend on the card used when shooting.

A buffer with all additional functions enabled contains:

  • about 5 frames in RAW format, while in JVI the buffer exponent is 4 frames.
  • 2 frames in JPEG L format, after which the camera makes a fairly long delay.
  • 2 frames in RAW + JPEG L format, then the camera waits for data to be recorded on the card.

The number of frames in a series with the 'enhancers' enabled practically does not depend on the card used, since the camera spends CPU time on improving the images.

Considering that the 1200D is designed for amateurs who will shoot in JPEG format with all the enhancements enabled by default, and who are trying to get good results right away, then the burst shooting limited to 2 shots is not so bad ... who am I kidding my ten year old Canon 350D with all the improvements puts in the buffer at least 9 shots!

Camera control is very similar to the control of a huge number of other Canon EOS cameras, if you get used to it and you can control the camera quickly and comfortably.

Canon EOS 1200D weighs just 73 grams more than the lightest model Canon 100D and ranks second in lightness. When working with a more or less serious, heavy lens, I did not feel any difference at all between the lightest 'hundred' and the Canon 1200D. Also, I didn’t notice any difference in size between the weave and Canon 1200D, although the weaving is 12.8 mm less in length, 9 mm in width and 8.5 mm in height.

Canon EOS 1200D with Helios-81H 2/50 MS lens

Canon EOS 1200D with lens MS Helios-81H 2/50

In normal shooting mode, the Canon 1200D uses 9-point focusing with a cross-shaped center point. The camera inherited this focusing module from the previous model - Canon 1100D. Such a focusing module is used only by these two cameras. You can read more about the focusing modules for Canon cameras. here. Of course, you can focus on using the camera display.

3-inch camera display at 460.000 pixels. The number of dots on the display is noticeably less than all cameras, starting with the model Canon 500D (where there are about 920.000). Nevertheless, the display is pleasant - there are no inconveniences when viewing photos and navigating through menus.

Canon EOS 1200D uses a 63-zone metering sensor exposure with dual layer SPC and iFCL, exactly the same as on almost all Canon EOS cameras from the Canon 7D. More details about this in the section 'Canon CCD Exposure Sensors'. Canon 1200D, like all other Canon cameras, can meter exposure with any manual lens, so for the review I used a fast Soviet prime lens MS Helios-81H 2/50, the lack of automatic focusing on which helped to detect the presence of the Live View function with a 5 and 10-fold increase in the selected area.

Canon EOS 1200D with Sigma 50-150mm 1: 2.8 APO DC HSM EX

Canon EOS 1200D with lens Sigma 50-150mm 1: 2.8 APO DC HSM EX

Of course, as befits a pretty modern SLR camera, the Canon EOS 1200D can shoot Full HD video. You can select one of the quality options: 1920 × 1080 25fps, 1920 × 1080 24fps, 1280 × 720 50fps, 640 × 480 25fps, 1920 × 1080 30fps, 1920 × 1080 24fps, 1280 × 720 60fps, 640 × 480 30fps. Shutter speed and aperture can be changed during movie shooting, and ISO sensitivity can be automatically controlled.

Canon EOS 1200D is usually sold with a simple universal lens. Canon Zoom Lens EF-S 18-55mm 1: 3.5-5.6 IS II. Finding a camera without a lens (only the body) is not so simple, but if you don’t want to get in touch with the simplest lens of the 18-55 / 3,5-5,6 class, then I recommend looking at a fairly good universal lens Canon Zoom Lens EF-S 18-135mm 1: 3.5-5.6 IS STM.

Here link to the archive with the originals - 1.17 GB, 53 photos in CR2 format (RAW) Photos were taken using lenses Canon Macro Lens EF 100mm 1: 2.8 L IS USM, MS Helios-81H 2/50 and flashes Nikon Speedlight SB-900 и Metz Mecablitz 48AF-1. You can find more examples of photos on the Canon EOS 1200D in the lens review Nikon Nikkor 85mm 1: 1.4.

Prices for modern Canon cameras in popular stores can look at this link.

In comments Can I ask you a question on the topic and you will answer, and you can also express your opinion or describe your experience. Many little things for a photo can be found on AliExpress.


In many ways, the Canon EOS 1200D is very similar to many of its brothers, with the same uncomplicated menus and basic functions (such as matrix cleaning and creative filters). Personally, I believe that the Canon 1200D turned out to be a very well-balanced, unpretentious and inexpensive camera. Unlike Canon 1100D, the video has been brought to mind, the problem of reducing the speed of burst shooting in RAW format has been resolved and various little things have been added or improved. If you are tormented by the pangs of choice, maybe amateur camera selection section :).

Material prepared Arkady Shapoval. Training/Consultations | Youtube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Telegram

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Comments: 187, on the topic: Impressions of the Canon EOS 1200D

  • Seva

    Hello, could you tell me to choose your first camera? So far I've settled on the Nikon D3100 and Canon 550D. Sorry if this is an off-topic question.

  • Natalia

    Please tell me which lens can fit this camera, for shooting medium-sized toys with a blurred background from 50 cm. It is very necessary, but I am at a loss with the choice.

    • B. R. P.

      And the whale may be enough. Which one do you already have?

      • Natalia

        I have the one that came with the sale along with the camera 18-55. Longer distances he blurs well, but I need the blur to be around the toy, the size of which is on average 30 cm. Here's an example of the background blur I need.

    • Alexander

      I understand that it is not in the subject and the gurus have every right to stamp their feet ...
      But, a static scene, light is not a problem, maybe another instrument will be cheaper?
      Here's an example, the ancient Panasonic superzoom had remarkable Leica optics.
      Crop photo. made from 5 meters, the light is 60 W light bulb.
      The Panasonic FZ45, with all its faults, is sharper than my Tamron 600 with Pentax with its 300-kopeck focal length.
      It cost me 1000 UAH, I think it is cheaper than any lens for Kenon ...

  • Natalia

    Another important question for me, guys, please tell me. Look at the photo and tell me how to get such a bright photo. As I understand it, the picture was taken from above, ice lamp over toys. I bought an LED lamp - a ring, a Canon 1200D camera, an 18/55 lens. Was a photo taken here with a flash or was this photo taken with a phone? I can't get light photos, they have a gray tint. Just don't throw your slippers at me, I'm trying to figure it out. I know how to knit beautifully, but I can't make beautiful photos and convey the look of the toy.

    • Victor

      Lens if you need blur - 50 1.8 (better than STM) or Helios, at worst))

      Such photos are easiest to get with a flash at the ceiling (if it is white), there will be uniform bright illumination.

      • Natalia

        Please tell me which flash is suitable for this camera. And how to understand the flash in the ceiling? The ceiling is just perfectly white.

        • Victor

          A flash at the ceiling is to direct it not at the subject of the photograph, but upward (the ceiling must be matte, of course) to get a huge one. "Diffuser", so you remove harsh shadows.
          Any model will do that is compatible with your camera, including any manual one, they are cheaper.

          • Natalia

            Thank you! I decided on the lens. Now I'll look for a flash.

            • Andrii

              You can also edit it in a photo editor. Raise the exposure, play with the white balance so that the colors are correct, tweak the shadows and light. A whale lens with an external manual flash is enough for this.

            • Specialist

              Escho you need to be able to process photos, then the gray ones can be converted into such as in your examples. Of course, for more blur, shoot at an open aperture.

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