Want great image quality but don't want to carry around a full-sized DSLR? Canon's EOS M50 and EOS Rebel SL2/200D are two options you may have been considering. If so, let's take a look at these two cameras to see how they compare.
Canon EOS M50 and EOS Rebel SL2/200D Shared Primary Features:
Primary Advantages of the Canon EOS M50:
Primary Advantages of the Canon EOS Rebel SL2/200D:
Who should opt for the Canon EOS M50?
Those wanting the smallest and lightest camera option, especially for backpacking or family vacations, Canon's mirrorless cameras pack DSLR-level image quality in a take-anywhere size. That the EOS M50 is compatible with Canon's similarly-small EF-M series lenses further bolsters this advantage. And while the M50 is technically more versatile from a lens options standpoint when the EF-EOS M Adapter is factored into the equation, use of the adapter with designed-for-DSLR lenses negates much of the small size and light weight benefits of an M50-based kit.
If you need a camera that shoots 4K, then the choice is easy – the EOS M50 shoots 4k, the EOS Rebel SL2/200D does not. Although you don't get the benefits of Dual Pixel CMOS Movie Servo AF in 4K mode, the ability to shoot 4K combined with the M50's vari-angle LCD and small size/weight will make it an extremely useful tool for filmmaking, especially for vloggers or one-man crews. If you appreciate the benefits of an EVF (Electronic Viewfinder), then the EOS M50 becomes the de facto option. However, note that I didn't list an EVF as a benefit for the EOS M50 nor did I list the OVF (Optical Viewfinder) as a benefit for the Rebel SL2/200D. Your own personal preferences and specific needs will dictate which viewfinder is most advantageous. Check out our article "Comparing Electronic Viewfinders to Optical Viewfinders" for more information. The EOS M50 also features a better/more sensitive AF system, more sensitive metering system, a faster continuous shooting burst rate and a larger buffer.
These features along with the camera's new .CR3 RAW file format (with space saving C-RAW support) result in an overall more versatile camera compared to the EOS Rebel SL2/200D.
Who should opt for the Canon EOS Rebel SL2/200D?
For those who tend to occasionally forget to pack important items in their gear bag, an advantage of the SL2/200D is its native compatibility with all of Canon's EF, EF-S, TS-E and MP-E lenses (no adapter required). Those needing to control larger lenses on their camera and those actively using the camera for substantial time periods will appreciate the SL2/200D's more substantial grip and longer battery life. The Rebel SL2/200D's larger exposure compensation range can certainly come in handy under extreme exposure conditions.
The Rebel SL2 has one particular advantage that nearly every photographer can appreciate – a lower price tag compared to the M50.
In Shenandoah National Park, early June brings bright green flora that provides a great environment for wildlife photography.
Ferns are one of my favorite sources of bright green and there is no animal that stands out in starker contrast to ferns than a coal-black black bear.
This mother bear paused her food hunting task to look intently toward her two cubs, treed high in a large pine tree nearby.
While the green flora is very helpful in compositions, it also adds challenges. One flora challenge is that it frequently obstructs the view of the subject with small animals (including fawns and cubs) being most-easily obscured. While an eye-level shooting height often works well for wildlife photography, a higher level may sometimes be needed to clear the obstructions.
Another flora challenge is AF-related. The contrast and brightness provided by the green leaves and grasses along with their closer-to-the-camera position often gains the camera's AF system preference, causing a strongly front-focused image.
The bottom line is that the eyes (minimally the closest one) must be in focus. While MF may sometimes be required to work around obstructions, they can often be worked around by selecting a focus point off of the animal's eye, on a nearby part. Which nearby part depends on the animal and its head position. If the animal is looking sideways in the frame, much of the head, from nose to ear, may provide a sharp eye. If the animal is facing the camera, the challenge is often greater with long noses also being a big AF system lock-on favorite. Parts that situationally may work include the forehead, the base of an antler or the base of an ear.
Carefully watching what is sharp immediately upon focus lock can help identify any series issues in that regard. For this frame, focusing on the eye worked fine.
I have had the privilege of photographing a large number of bears and know that they are not equally attractive. Within a species, they have somewhat different shapes and especially their coats are not all the same. This one; however, was a quite beautiful specimen.
A larger version of this image is available on Flickr.