These two cameras are very similar in size and shape. You may want to put your hands on both to see what feels nicest. Additional sample videos
What the T5i has that the D5200 doesn’t:
- Touch screen – use is optional as all physical buttons are still present but it does allow access to all features of the camera in quick and efficient manner.
- Silent Auto Focus during video when paired with the 18-55 STM or the 18-135 STM lenses. Nikon also offers full time AF but does not have a silent lens.
- Wireless Flash Control – ability to fire external flashes that are not attached to the camera
- The ability to adjust your aperture during live view – Useful for learning and a depth of field preview button
- Shooting in various aspect ratios 1:1, 4:3, 3:2. 16:9 but only when shot through live view
- A bit more space on the back of the camera for larger hands.
- Built in focus motor – the T5i will auto focus with all EF and EF-S lenses. D5200 lacks focus motor which limits lens selection – this is not nearly as big a deal as it was a few years ago, Nikon has released plenty of lenses that will AF with the D5200.
What the D5200 has that the T5i doesn’t:
- Faster focusing brain with 39 AF points – Focus performance was occasionally slightly faster through the viewfinder and in live view. T5i has 9 focus points but the Nikon’s general operation is slower and I have missed action shots with the D5200 that I caught with the T5i.
- Below 1600 ISO the two cameras perform similarly, above you start to see a difference with less noise and more detail out of the Nikon D5200
- More megapixels 24 vs 18 – not nearly as big a difference as it looks on paper. (Illustration coming)
- Small flashlight for low-light auto focus assist. T5i has flash that pops up and annoyingly strobes.
- More shutter modes – a slow burst 3FPS versus normal 5FPS(same as T5i) and a Quiet Shutter that doesn’t sound much quieter.
- 1080i at 60fps. T5i only offers 1080p at 30fps. At the 60 frame rates the video is interlaced and cropped, quality is OK but not really worth using..
- Additional Scene Modes and effects and a more robust HDR feature.
- Wireless dongle accessory($60) makes it easy to use phone as live viewfinder/remote and download photos to phone/tablet.
- Built in intervalometer for shooting time lapse – though it is limited and basic and possible buggy too.
- A retouch menu with a several more options.
- A few quirks: aperture changing, tendency to lean greenish though it can be argued that the Canon leans redish
Canon T5i vs Nikon D5200 Summary:
If you were to just count the bullets Nikon would get a fairly clear K.O but not every bullet is worth the same weight and it depends on your needs and use case. Both cameras produce excellent images in a variety of conditions. If I had to pick highlights for each –
On the Canon T5i side I would mention that user friendly touchscreen which makes the whole camera a bit simpler to operate and the pairing with the 18-55 STM or the 18-135 STM that provides silent and smooth auto focus during video -this is a very family friendly feature and makes this an all around photo and video machine.
On the Nikon D5200 side I would mention the ISO performance and general feature richness of the camera.
Another Item worth mentioning – Nikon’s track record of customer service is a bit less than stellar, they have had a few camera models in recent years shipped out with serious issues that they denied for way to long and their general average repair time is often several times longer than Canon. I really haven’t heard of any customer horror stories with Canon, although they too have shipped cameras with problems they seem to deal with the issue quickly enough and fairly.
So which should you buy? You are going to make the best pictures with the camera you are most comfortable using and I think for many of you this will be your first DSLR and that friendly touchscreen and user interface of the Canon is worth lots. If you are willing to work a bit harder it is *possible” to get better photos out of the Nikon but I don’t think for many of you that it is worth the quirks and in my opinion the more difficult operating system.
Would you like a personal recommendation? Leave me a message on my Facebook page or a comment below letting me know about you, what you like to photograph and where you hope to be as a photographer in a year or two.
Buying the Nikon or Canon through my links supports this site and costs you nothing extra.
- Nikon D5200 24.1 MP with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S DX VR NIKKOR Zoom Lens (Buy from B&H includes free grip & battery) (Buy from Amazon)
- Canon EOS Rebel T5i 18.0 MP with 18-55mm STM Lens (Buy from Amazon). 18-135 STM (Buy from Amazon)
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Coming Soon –
Next Steps – Price out lens packages for general use. What does Nikon offer for general walk around, good zooms for wildlife, portraits, street, primes, macros etc. External Flash options – Articles/Videos are coming along with “What would be your cost of owning”
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