Whether you’re a casual photographer who is searching for an easy-to-use camera that takes high-quality photos or an entry-level professional, the Canon EOS Rebel T6 DSLR camera gives you a lot of features for a relatively small investment.
Also called the EOS 1300 D outside of the US, this model debuted in March of 2016 and is still a favorite among users today.
In this review, we’ll take an in-depth look at the product specifications, and tell you what people love about the model. We’ll make some recommendations on who it’s best suited for, and stack it up against the competition so you can see the pros and cons. Finally, we’ll tell you what it costs, and share a few insider tips to save you money when you’re ready to shop.
What Is The Canon EOS Rebel T6 And How Does It Work?
The Canon EOS Rebel T6 DSLR camera is a digital single-lens reflex camera that uses an APS-C CMOS sensor that shoots at 18MP. It has a three-inch screen that renders at 920,000k dots, and can also take video in high-definition at 1080p.
Although it’s an entry-level model, it uses an EF-S lens mount. That means that you can use any of Canon’s extensive range of EF lenses with this option, giving you lots of compatible accessories to capture a wider range of shots as your skills and budget allow.
The T6 comes with a nine-point autofocusing system that highlights your central, or most sensitive point on the display screen. The optical viewfinder gives you 95 percent coverage of your shooting area, which means you’ll see everything but what will appear in the edges of your shot when you take a photo.
The ISO range is 100-6,400, which is limited when you compare it to some of the newer models available. However, you can expand this to up to 12,800 if needed.
The LCD screen is on par with many higher-end models. At a full three inches, it has 920k dot units which give you a clear image preview and easy-to-read menu navigation.
One of the most notable features of the EOS Rebel T6 is its connectivity options. Previous models in the Rebel line lacked this component, but here you have both Wi-Fi and NFC available. This means you can automatically send images to your connected devices, and even control the camera from your tablet or smartphone.
Because this camera is built for beginners, it has several pre-set modes that make adjustments automatically and capture scenes with predetermined settings. However, the camera can grow with you as your abilities improve and also has semi-auto and manual modes, as well as the ability to shoot in the industry-standard raw format.
Although this camera can’t shoot in full 4k definition, which isn’t uncommon at this price-point, you can capture 1920x1080 high-definition video. The frame rates are adjustable in the manual mode, and you can choose from 24, 25, or 30 frames per second as a frame rate.
The battery will give you time for around 500 shots, which is a respectable amount that will last around a full day for most photographers.
What Makes The Canon EOS Rebel T6 Camera Unique
Although the Canon EOS Rebel T6 DSLR camera is a few years old, it has several features that set it apart from its competition. Here are the main things that users love about this model.
Before Canon made upgrades and launched this model in 2016, they did lots of research with focus groups and users to find out what the average, everyday, amateur photographer likes to snap.
One popular trend that emerged was food photography. People love to post pics of their meals on social media, particularly Instagram. In fact, 55 percent of the people they surveyed in a group of 1,000 panelists said that they take and share photos of their meals.
What’s more, 41 percent of those same people said that they want to get better at food photography.
To answer that need, Canon added a “food mode” as an option you can select from their mode dial so that users can quickly access it without needing to navigate through the presets menu. Now, it’s included alongside other frequently used modes like:
The idea is to remove the need for filters or heavy editing before posting to social media and instead of making the adjustments to the camera when you take the shot. In food mode, images have more color vibrancy and an increase, in contrast, to give you a boost to the image saturation.
The setting also compensates for restaurant lighting and takes away the red/orange tint that you usually get in images taken when eating out. You can also manually make quick, additional adjustments to the temperature on the fly by hitting the Q button and making it cooler or warmer.
Another feature that users appreciate about the Rebel T6 is it’s Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity. To make it easier to post on social media, as well as to operate the camera remotely or print off pictures to a photo printer, this model allows you to connect wirelessly to your tablet or smartphone.
Although the feature isn’t as easy to use as you might hope, it is possible to toggle through the various menus to pair your device, and from there it’s a simple process to send the image wirelessly.
With this capability, you can also use Canon Camera Connect which enables you to see a live image from your wireless device paired with the camera so that you could use it as a pet or nanny cam too.
An entry-level price point can sometimes mean that the product doesn’t perform well, but that’s not the case with the Rebel T6. The iFCL metering system does a decent job of giving you accurate exposures in a variety of lighting situations.
The automatic white balance function does an excellent job of coping with different amounts of light, and the variety of pre-programmed settings for daytime, nighttime, fluorescent lighting, and more make it easy to get a true-to-color shot.
The DIGIC 4+ processor allows you to see your images in playback mode relatively quickly, which makes it easy to make adjustments to your settings if needed.
Finally, with around 500 shots per battery charge, this model falls in line with most of its competitors. Although there are options that offer a bit more, which we mention below, most users agree that this amount was more than adequate for amateur use.
If you’re new to DSLR shooting, be prepared to be impressed with the quality of your photos. Both your JPEG’s and Raw images come across with excellent contrast, warmth, and saturation.
The mode settings and Picture Styles make it easy to tweak tones via the presets, or you can make manual adjustments.
You’ll see excellent detail resolution thanks to the 18 million pixel sensor, and you’ll easily be able to resize your images to larger prints and poster sizes if you desire.
Since this entry-level model is a few years old, you can pick it up for a very affordable price. It retails from the manufacturer for $549, but you can find it on Amazon regularly for just under $$$.
Even better, you can often scoop up several must-have accessories and save money by bundling them together. For example, a promotional bundle that includes not only the Rebel T6 camera, but also an EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II lens, a 16 GB memory card, a Flash, and a 60-inch-tripod runs $$$.
For perspective, that lens alone costs $$$ if you purchase it outside of the bundle.
You’ll likely also want to invest in a few backup memory cards so that you never run out of space. They run between $ and $$ each depending on how many gigabytes you purchase.
Finally, you may also want to back a backup battery on hand. If you keep it fully charged, you’ll guarantee you never run out of juice and miss a moment. These run less than $$ each.
Cannon has been around in the US for over sixty years and opened their first office in New York in 1955. Today, they are a well-known brand name in the industry, and users generally love their products.
The Rebel line is one of their best-sellers, and the T6 DSLR is particularly popular amongst novice photographers. Users feel like they get a lot of value for their money, and thanks to the interchangeable lenses, that this is a model that can grow with them as their skills develop.
Although many industry analysts were critical of the T6 when it first launched because there wasn’t much to differentiate it from the previous T5 model, it’s proven to be a good performer.
Most would argue there is no reason to spend the money to upgrade from the T5 to the T6, but if you’re looking to purchase your first DSLR camera, it’s worth the extra money for the additional features.
How It Compares
There is a lot of competition among entry-level cameras, and we’ve outlined a few of the competition below.
The Rebel’s biggest competitor, the Nikon D3400 has a lot in common with the Canon model, but with a few notable differences.
A 24MP camera, this one gives you a higher resolution and also has longer battery life. It’s good for 700 shots and produces images with good quality. It also has a maximum burst rate of 5 frames per second, which is greater than the three frames per second you see in the T6.
Despite those upgrades, the Nikon model doesn’t have any Wi-Fi or NFC capabilities, so you’ll need to export and save your images the old-fashioned way.
This model retails for around $$$ for the camera without any lenses or accessories.
More advanced photographers or those with a slightly larger budget may want to consider the more recent Rebel release, the T7i/EOS 800D.
It’s equipped with a 24.2 MP sensor which gives you incredibly high image quality and cuts down noise levels even when you shoot at a high ISO.
You’ll spend a bit more on this model, and it retails for around $$$. This option is one that can grow with you and may be an excellent choice if you want an entry-level camera with some of the features and functionality you find with high-end models.
What We Think
Although the Canon Rebel T6 is a solid entry-level DSLR camera, it doesn’t have any incredible features or functionality that sets it significantly apart from its competition. That said, it’s an excellent choice for beginners who are new to shooting with this type of camera, especially those who want to upload photos and files to social media easily.
The Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity make transferring files easy, and the high-resolution screen lets you get an accurate preview of your image without needing to move it from the camera.
Keep in mind; this model lacks a few features that you see in other entry-level cameras. If you want touchscreen control, more than a 95% viewfinder, or more than 18 MP resolution, you may want to check out other options.
It’s also worth mentioning that you can get the T5 model, which is nearly identical outside of the high-resolution screen and the addition of wi-fi and food mode, for around $$$ less.
Coupons And Deals
If you’re ready to purchase a Canon Rebel T6, then you should shop around online for deals and savings on bundles. Like we mentioned above in the pricing section, you can sometimes save a significant amount of money by purchasing the camera and upgraded lenses as a package which will give you more versatility with your shooting capabilities.
Another way to save up to $$ on your camera is to look for certified refurbished models from a reputable dealer. These cameras are sent back to Cannon who returns them to like-new condition, and then they are available for a discounted price.
You can sometimes even get one that offers a limited warranty despite being a used model.