Canon EOS 200D: A Beginner’s Guide

 

Tanvi Dhulia puts Canon’s latest iteration, the EOS 200D to the test. How does the compact DSLR fare?

Canon EOS 200D

Canon EOS 200D

When Canon had launched the EOS 100D, it drew attention for its compact size and was expected to give competition to mirrorless cameras of the time. It displayed a superior performance, but perplexed some by its seemingly high price tag. Four years after the 100D’s release, what does Canon have in store for us now?

Features
The EOS 200D has made a 6.2MP upgrade from its predecessor by having a 24.2MP APS-C CMOS sensor. The image processor too has been bumped up from DIGIC 5 to DIGIC 7. It has an ISO range of 100 to 25,600 (which can be expanded to 51,200). The sensor features a Live View Dual Pixel AF system with 49 AF points. It also has an optical viewfinder, with which a separate AF module with 9 points is active.

The camera is a superb companion for those who are drawn to DSLRs but are generally repelled by their size and weight. Exposure: 1/80sec at f/5.6 (ISO 800))

The camera is a superb companion for those who are drawn to DSLRs but are generally repelled by their size and weight. Exposure: 1/80sec at f/5.6 (ISO 800). Photograph/ Tanvi Dhulia

The 200D comes equipped with a 3-inch fully articulated LCD screen. It has got a resolution of 1.04 million dots.

Considering the EOS 200D is aimed at novice photographers, features like its scene modes with simple guidelines can be very useful for someone like me who is writing a full-fledged review of a DSLR for the first time. Amongst these, it has an HDR Backlight control mode which can be used to photograph high contrast scenes so as to retain details in bright or dark areas.

While the 200D doesn’t support 4K recording, those who enjoy making videos can do so at Full HD at up to 60fps, and other frame rates like 50p, 30p, 25p, 24p. It features external mic support. The camera has built-in Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth connectivity.

On its own, in the ‘Auto mode’, the camera made appropriate decisions to deliver accurate colours and a sharp image on a morning when the light was changing constantly and my subjects weren’t exactly cooperative. Exposure: 1/640sec at f/5.6 (ISO 1600)

On its own, in the ‘Auto mode’, the camera made appropriate decisions to deliver accurate colours and a sharp image on a morning when the light was changing constantly and my subjects weren’t exactly cooperative. Exposure: 1/640sec at f/5.6 (ISO 1600). Photograph/ Tanvi Dhulia

Handling
At 406g the 200D’s body is extremely light and portable. Yet the camera feels sturdy, and its protruding right hand grip makes it easy to hold. However, people with large hands may find it uncomfortable to handle due to its compact size.

The placement of the controls has changed a bit, and in my opinion, for the better. The power switch has been moved to make it swiftly accessible by your thumb instead of the index finger.

It has excellent touch-screen features which are easy to navigate. The touch-to-shoot function, in particular, responds instantly and is rather impressive.

Since I happen to be a left-eye shooter, using the optical viewfinder immediately after adjusting settings on the touchscreen monitor would frequently lead my nose to touch the screen and accidentally alter settings. Fortunately, a Display button can quickly activate or deactivate the touchscreen.

Furthermore, when it comes to making pictures and videos of oneself, the display can be rotated around, allowing me a view of myself and letting me change settings easily.

Performance
Like its predecessor, the 200D has 9 AF Points, somewhat conservative by today’s standards. However, it performs well when it comes to locking focus quickly on stationary subjects. As I expected, nine points is not good enough for tracking, and the device does a much better job with moving subjects if you’re using Live View Dual Pixel AF.

While shooting in the Auto mode, moving subjects can appear blurry if the light levels are not bright enough, as the camera tends to use slower shutter speeds. The Sports and Kids modes use faster shutter speeds to capture objects in such situations. I made use of the former while photographing a dog contest one morning, and it came in handy when trying to freeze the often comical antics of the restless canines.

The 200D does a good job of retaining details in the shadows of an image. Exposure: 1/80sec at f/20 (ISO 200)

The 200D does a good job of retaining details in the shadows of an image. Exposure: 1/80sec at f/20 (ISO 200). Photograph/ Tanvi Dhulia

Conclusion
The EOS 200D is certainly a step up from its predecessor, and my experience with it was an enjoyable one. I like that it’s fairly light, which is important for someone like me who struggles to shoot over long periods with heavier DSLRs. So, if you are inclined to buy a DSLR but are put off by their weight and bulky size, the EOS 200D is currently the smallest one available. And while it may not be a pocket camera, the device is easily portable. It has also got well-placed controls that make it easy to glide from one button to another.

Rs. 47,495 does seem a steep price to pay for an entry-level camera with an EF-S 18-55 IS STM lens. At the moment, the Nikon D5500 is a close competitor (slightly more expensive), but not as good a video performer. Those looking for a mirrorless camera in the same price bracket can consider the Sony A6000, which has 179 focus points. Launched in 2014, the A6000 has an aging sensor. However, neither the Sony nor Nikon cameras I’ve mentioned feature the superior touch-screen benefits offered by the 200D.

All in all, the EOS 200D is a good fit for the casual photographer, if one is willing to shell out some more.

FINAL RATINGS
Features
Fully articulating monitor, touch screen, no 4K
25/30
Performance
Nice colours, fast AF, decent battery life
26/30
Build Quality
Compact, lightweight but sturdy
17/20
Ergonomics
Excellent touchscreen, well-placed controls
14/15
Warranty & Support
Wide service network
4/5
MRP Rs. 47,495
OVERALL 86%
VALUE FOR MONEY 3/5
Who should buy it? Amateur photographers, and casual users who are looking for a compact DSLR with great features.
Why? Light and compact body with a friendly interface and excellent touchscreen capabilities.
Tags: better photography, Canon, Canon 200D, January 2018, Review, Tanvi Dhulia, Test