Canon EOS 1300D Review

April 19, 2016 | Jack Baker |
thumbnail

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this review were taken using the 18 megapixel Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 6Mb.

With Nikon’s move to fit a 24MP sensor to the D3200 in 2012, Canon’s decision to stick with its venerable 18MP device for the EOS 1300D is a disappointment. Even so, in terms of real world image quality, it’s still able to deliver satisfactory – if far from stunning – results.

Fitted with our 18-55mm IS STM lens, the Canon EOS 1300D resolved plenty of detail up to ISO 1600. However, the sensor and Digic 4 image processor’s age do start to show when it comes to high ISO image quality. At ISO 3200 there’s noticeable detail loss, colours become blotchy and colour speckling is evident in shadow areas – something rarely seen from comparable cameras at this sensitivity. Push on to ISO 6400 and it’s more of the same, with the colour speckling now visible even at 25% image size in some low light shots. Consequently it’s easy to see why Canon doesn’t flaunt the 1300D’s expanded ISO 12800 setting, such is the unsightly amount of noise at this sensitivity. But if you mount a stabilised or large aperture lens, there’ll be few times when sensitivities higher than ISO 3200 are required.

The EOS 1300D’s 63-zone exposure metering generally produces accurate exposures in a range of lighting conditions, although the sensor’s relatively restricted dynamic range can cause high-contrast images to appear dark with murky shadow areas. The flip side is highlights that are rarely overexposed, but it can be beneficial to sacrifice some highlight detail by dialling in a stop of positive exposure compensation to produce a brighter overall image.

Customising the camera’s colour preferences may also be required, as the EOS 1300D’s restrained colour reproduction won’t be to everyone’s taste, especially if you’re used to the punchier colour palette produced by modern smartphone cameras.

Noise

The Canon EOS 1300D has seven sensitivity settings ranging from ISO 100 to 6400. This can be expanded one stop to add a High (ISO 12800) sensitivity by enabling ‘ISO expansion’ via the main menu. The camera’s auto ISO upper limit can also be configured, with a maximum sensitivity of ISO 6400. However, the 1300D’s sensitivity scale only changes in 1EV steps and there’s no option to add 1/3EV increments.

JPEG

RAW

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

iso100.jpg iso100raw.jpg
   

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

iso200.jpg iso200raw.jpg
   

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

iso400.jpg iso400raw.jpg
   

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

iso800.jpg iso800raw.jpg
   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

iso1600.jpg iso1600raw.jpg
   

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

iso3200.jpg iso3200raw.jpg
   

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

iso6400.jpg iso6400raw.jpg
   

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

ISO 12800 (100% Crop)

iso12800.jpg iso12800raw.jpg

File Quality

Numerous file quality and size options are available. At full 18MP resolution you can shoot in raw (average 25MB file size), JPEG Fine (4-10MB) and JPEG Normal (2-5MB). There’s also a RAW+JPEG Fine setting.

The medium (M) image size translates to 8MP (3456x2304) photos, with Fine and Normal compression options available. Selecting the ‘S1’ image size gives 4.5MP images at 2592x1728 resolution, again with Fine (approx. 1.8MB file size) and Normal (0.9MB) compression options. S2 image size results in 1920x1280 shots, also around 1MB in size. Finally, the ‘S3’ option generates 720x480 shots which consume less than 500KB of card space.

Fine (6.23Mb) (100% Crop) Normal (2.98Mb) (100% Crop)
quality_fine.jpg quality_normal.jpg
   
RAW (23.7Mb) (100% Crop)  
quality_raw.jpg  

Flash

The built-in flash has relatively few options. From the Flash Control entry in the main menu, you can configure it to operate in first or second curtain sync modes, dial in +/- 2EV of exposure compensation, and select between evaluative or average TTL metering. Red-eye reduction is also enabled or disabled via the main menu.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (29mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (29mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off - Telephoto (88mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (88mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

With or without red-eye reduction, the Canon EOS 1300D successfully avoided red-eye during our testing. The flash did produce some minor vignetting when shooting a white surface at a distance of 1.5m with an 18mm focal length, but falloff was gone by 55mm.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
flash_on.jpg flash_on1.jpg
   

Red-eye Reduction

Red-eye Reduction (100% Crop)

flash_redeye.jpg flash_redeye1.jpg

Night

In program auto mode and with auto ISO, it’s easy to snap sharp night-time shots, although the final image is unnaturally bright. ISO 6400 is required to keep shutter speeds high enough to counteract camera shake, and this inevitably introduces noticeable noise.

To avoid this you’ll need to carry a tripod and switch to shutter priority or manual mode to record a long exposure. This 8-second, ISO 100 image has a more realistic exposure than the handheld shot and is free from noise.

Night Program

Night Program (100% Crop)

night2.jpg night2a.jpg
   

Night

Night (100% Crop)

night1.jpg night1a.jpg

Creative Filters

The entry-level nature of the EOS 1300D means Canon has seen fit to equip it with five Creative Filter effects, however they can only be applied to saved photos in playback mode. The effects are: Grainy B&W, Soft focus, Fish-eye effect, Toy camera effect, and Miniature effect.

Grainy B&W

Soft focus

filter_01.jpg filter_02.jpg
   
Fish-eye Effect

Toy Camera Effect

filter_03.jpg filter_04.jpg
   
Miniature Effect  
filter_05.jpg