Price (RRP): $999
Well, I can’t really disagree with the claim that the Canon EOS 200D Mark II DSLR camera is the company’s lightest DSLR so far. Not that I’ve checked them all, but it certainly is light. But it’s far more than that.
Review: Canon EOS 200D Mark II DSLR camera
- Australian Website here.
- Manual here.
- Price: A$999 – seen online for as low as $742.45, or $619 without lens.
- From: Legitimate retailers and direct from Canon here.
- Warranty: 12 months
- Country of Manufacture: Taiwan
- About: Canon is a Japanese company founded in the 1930s to make cameras. These days it still makes cameras, plus a whole lot more.
DSLR vs Mirrorless
In recent years I’ve mostly been using interchangeable lens mirrorless cameras, so let’s briefly recap what a DSLR is.
A single lens reflex camera uses a mirror in front of the film to reflect the view through the lens up into an optical viewfinder. When you press the shutter release, in addition to the shutter opening up briefly, the mirror flips up out of the way for an instant. A DSLR is the same, except a sensor is used instead of film.
As with the rest of the industry, Canon has in the last couple of years been increasingly leaning towards mirrorless. That includes the forthcoming Canon EOS R5 and R6, both professional level full-frame mirrorless models.
Meanwhile, Canon has been one of the best DSLR brands this past fifteen years, from the launch of the EOS 5D 12.8MP full frame model way back in 2005.
Let’s face it, mirrorless does have real advantages. There’s less camera shake when taking photos, since there’s no need to flip the mirror out of the way. Things are somewhat simpler. The lens can be closer to the sensor, allowing more optical design possibilities. The viewfinder – because it’s really just a mini-screen showing what the sensor is seeing – shows 100% of the scene, not a smaller central section. And you can use the rear monitor for framing your shots.
But the DLSRs show you the actual scene optically. There are no resolution limitations. And the Canon EOS 200D Mark II has “Live View” button near the viewfinder. Press it and you hear a little clunk as the mirror is flipped up and locked out of the way. Then you can use the rear monitor, just like that with a mirrorless camera.
About the Canon EOS 200D Mark II DSLR camera
Speaking of which, the monitor is flexible. You can flip it out to the left and rotate it on axis so, basically, you can see it from anywhere. Useful for framing those difficult shots. Again, that’s in Live View mode. In normal mode, the monitor shows settings.
The sensor feeding the monitor is APS-C in size. Canon’s APS-C is very slightly smaller – 22.5 × 15mm versus 24 × 16mm – than those in some other brands, but I doubt it makes any kind of significant difference. This one has a resolution of 24 megapixels – the images are 6,000 by 4,000 pixels and average 10MB in size for JPEGs at the highest quality setting, and 25MB to 30MB for RAW images.
The Canon EOS 200D Mark II comes with an 18-55mm zoom lens with a maximum aperture of f/4.0 to f/5.6. Because it’s APS-C the crop factor is 1.6:1, so that lens is equivalent to 28.8mm to 88mm in full-frame terms. Canon also sent the 18-135mm zoom (around $850) and a 60mm prime lens with macro (around $750) for the review. The two zooms have optical image stabilisation built in. It has been Canon’s practice to put OIS in its lenses rather than the camera body. Dual Pixel autofocus with nine autofocus points is employed. All three lenses also have a manual/auto focus switch.
The camera is laid out pretty much like any DSLR. The on/off switch also has a movie-taking position (4K to 25p, FullHD at 60p). One mode dial provides for things like intelligent auto, aperture priority, manual and so on. A scattering of buttons over the back of the camera invoke other functions. A wheel near the shutter release adjusts them.
Canon EOS 200D Mark II weight and feel
With the standard lens, battery and card in place, the Canon EOS 200D Mark II weighed just 663 grams. It really feels light in the hand. My Panasonic GH4 – with a smaller Micro Four-Thirds sensor – by contrast, is just about 800 grams. It didn’t feel less sturdy for all of that. The right hand bump seemed the right depth for my fingers, while a sculpted channel on the rear guided my thumb between several buttons such that I didn’t accidentally press them.
Under a panel on the right-hand side is a Micro-B USB socket and HDMI output. A panel on the left side hides a socket for a wired remote control and a 3.5mm microphone input. The SDXC card slot is in the battery compartment.
There’s a hot flash shoe on top, but also a small pop-up flash.
Caution on power
Oh, how I did carry on earlier in the year! It was about being kind of let down by a compact Canon camera. I had just assumed that I could charge up the battery in-camera with a regular USB charger. But I was travelling far from home and disappointed to find that none of my charging gear would work. Soon the battery ran down and that was it. I should have taken the battery charger with me.