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Nikon D3400 vs Canon T5I


The Nikon D3400 was introduced to the market in August 2016 as an entry-level DSLR that is focused towards novices and hobbyists who want to have a better clue of how does it look and feel like to shoot with a DSLR camera, and at the same time, the Nikon D3400 replaced the well-known D3300.

On the other hand, the Canon T5i, which is also known as the EOS 700 outside of US, is also an entry-level DSLR camera that has appeared 3 years earlier than the D3400 in March 2013, and although there’s a 3 year gap between them, this doesn’t mean that the Canon T5i isn’t helpful at all, because it does really share many common things with the D3400, and one of them is the APS-C sensor.

Now, let’s get into action right away, and reveal all the advantages and disadvantages that you will receive in a return in a case of an eventual purchase, and decide which one wins the race here!

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Head To Head Comparison

Nikon D3400

Aesthetically speaking, the D3400 looks nearly identical to its predecessor, the D3400, however, with some changes, of course. The main material used throughout the crafting process is polycarbonate, and even though it is plastic, the D3400 does not look nor feel like you’re holding a camera made of plastic.

For your information, this unit measures 3.9 x 4.9 x 3.0″ (HWD), weighs around 13.9 ounces without a lens attached, and if you take a closer look at these dimensions, you can conclude that we are talking about an indeed compact and lightweight DSLR camera, which by default means that your shooting experience will be nothing but convenient. In fact, Nikon has included a deep grip as well, and they do really deserve credits from us, due to the fact that the regardless if the photographer has small or large hands, he/she will have a steady and comfortable hold of the camera which is always welcome especially if you’re shooting for a longer period of time.

On the top-center, there’s a hot shoe, a single Mode dial that sits next to it on the right side, while slightly below, on the grip, there’s a shutter-release button with an On/Off switch that is surrounded by three buttons.

On the rear, the control layout is very simple, since there aren’t many buttons, but those that exist are easily accessible and are mainly spread on the left and the right side, and the only exception is the AE-L/AF-L button that sits on the top.

Also on the top, you can find a built-in pentamirror viewfinder which will offer you a clear sight of everything you wish to capture, although it is smaller and a bit dimmer in comparison to pentaprism viewfinders. Either way, as a novice, you will be more than satisfied.

In addition, below the viewfinder there’s a 3″ fixed-type 921k-dot LCD display which outputs strong visuals and as a matter of fact, you will unlikely face any problems in terms of previewing your imagery/videos, or while you’re recording videos. However, my only remark is the lack of flexibility and touch-sensitivity, because clearly, Nikon could have done a better job here since you will be kind of restricted in shooting from different angles.

When it comes to the connection options, the D3400 houses a mini-HDMI port, micro-USB ports, single memory card slot that supports SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards, and unfortunately, it lacks Wi-Fi support, however, Nikon has managed to get away with it by making it Bluetooth-enabled!

Now, let’s take a look at the internal components and how does this camera performs in practice.

Well, the D3400 is powered by an EXPEED 4 Image processor, has a 24.2MP DX-Format CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter, burst shooting rate of 5 fps, 11-point AF and a native ISO range of 100-25,600.

First of all, I would like to let you know that this camera allows you to capture JPG and RAW-format images, and it does a truly wonderful job in keeping the noise at the lowest levels.

Namely, at ISO 800, JPGs look superb and consist of numerous details that look excellent. This pattern continues even at ISO 2000, however, starting from ISO 6400, noise starts to appear more pronounced and reaches its peak at the highest settings. At ISO 25,600, images are unusable because noise decreases the overall quality of the image, hence, I’d recommend you avoid pushing this far.

The RAW images remain superb even at the highest levels because throughout the ISO range details are preserved and the color accuracy remains strong. In comparison to JPGs, once you reach the ISO 12,800, details of RAW images are way more better than the JPGs, but keep in mind that at this level, the blur is still heavily pronounced.

Last but not least, the D3400 is also great for recording videos thanks to its ability to record 1080p videos at 24/25/30/50/60fps, and 720p videos at 50/60 fps. What’s also cool is that there are two quality levels of which you can choose from such as the Normal and High, and you can use each of them depending on your preferences. The overall quality of the footage is superb in my opinion, and I’d suggest you try yourself as a videographer as well!

Nikon D3400 Sample Images:

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Canon T5I

The Canon T5i as was the case with the D3400, does look nearly identical to its predecessor the T4i, but in comparison to the D3400 itself, the T5i is fairly compact and lightweight considering the fact that it is a DSLR camera, because it measures 3.9 by 5.2 x 3.1″ and weighs approximately 1.1 pounds.

In addition, this model features an attractive, all-black painted body that is made of a strong, polycarbonate material that feels comfortable and steady to shoot with, and what also makes it be comfortable is its deep grip which is covered in a rubberised coating, and when you see this unit as a whole, without a doubt, I can say that Canon did a really good job here!

When it comes to the control layout, the top area holds most of the main controls, including a Mode dial that sits on the top-right that also serves as an On/Off switch, a dedicated ISO button that sits above the dial, as well as a shutter release button that sits on the grip, exactly where you’d place your index finger, while on the top-center, there’s a hot shoe.

If you take a look from the rear, you’ll notice that on the top, there are a couple of buttons that sit next to the viewfinder, while on the right, next to the screen there are even more buttons that are pretty well organized.

Since I’ve mentioned both the viewfinder and the screen, let’s bring some details about them and explain how they can help you achieve great shooting results.

First and foremost, the pentamirror viewfinder covers 95% of the frame and to be honest, I find it very pleasant to use because it is bright and it suits your eye nicely, hence, I think that your shooting experience is going be absolutely convenient.

Secondly, T5i’s screen in comparison to the D3400 is vari-angle, supports touch gestures and has a resolution of around 1.4-million dots, hence, it is perfect for previewing content and recording videos because the visuals are indeed strong, and what’s even better is that you’ll be able to tilt it upwards for 180-degrees, 90-degrees backwards and 175-sideways. As you can see, you’ll never feel restricted in terms of use, even if you’re shooting under a bright daylight thanks to its smudge-resistant coating which keeps the reflections away for your ultimate user experience!

At this point, the T5i proves to be better and receives more points on the contrary to the D3400.

In terms of the connectivities, the EOS Rebel T5i holds a combined USB/AV-out socket, single mini-HDMI port, stereo microphone which consists of two small grills positioned in the front of the hot shoe, tripod socket of which you can take advantage and attach, a tripod as expected, and a single memory card slot that supports SD/SDHC/SDXC. Unfortunately, Canon failed a bit by omitting a Wi-Fi/Bluetooth support, and therefore, the D3400 offers the pleasure of transfetring data via Bluetooth, and by default, receives more credit.

Speaking of the performance, the Rebel T5i utilizes a 18MP APS-C CMOS sensor, has a 9- point all-cross type AF system, a continuous shooting speed of 5 fps, and it is powered by a DIGIC 5 image processor that allows you capture noise-free images most of the time throughout the ISO range of 100-12,800 which is expandable up to 25,600!

In practice, if you opt to shoot JPEG images through lower ISO settings, I’d like you to know that even though the image quality is strong, the luminance noise is a bit more pronounced, however, details are still preserved.

If you go beyond ISO 1600, let’s say at ISO 6400, the noise becomes more prominent but it isn’t aggressive as it would be if you go to the native highest level such as the ISO 12,800 or at the expandable ISO 25,600.

As was the case with the D3400, the Rebel T5i can also capture RAW format imagery, and keep in mind that results are strong until you reach the highest points, which is completely normal though.

Finally, the Rebel T5i records 1080p videos at 24/25/30fps, 720p videos at 60/50fps, and although the footage is crisp and holds well-defined details, considering the fact that it lacks recording 1080p videos at 60fps, the D3400 proves to be better at this point.

Canon T5I Sample Images:

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Nikon D3400 vs Canon T5I Feature Comparison

  Nikon D3400 Canon T5I
Camera Type DSLR DSLR
Megapixels 24.2 18.0
ISO Range 100-25,600 100-12,800;25,600
Flip-Out Screen No Yes
AF Points 11 AF Points 9 AF Points
Viewfinder Yes Yes
Touchscreen No Yes
Video Recording Yes Yes
Sensor Size APS-C APS-C

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In the end, there’s one more thing that we have to cover in order to officially announce the winner, and that’s a quick overview regarding the key aspects of both cameras, and where each of them outperforms the other and vice versa.

For example, at Portrait photography, even though both cameras output an average performance, the D3400 has a tiny advantage and that’s its 24MP sensor opposed to T5i’s 18MP, whereas for Street photography, both of them output an above average performance but the EOS Rebel T5i is slightly better.

For sports photography, the D3400 performs better because of its 11-focus points although both cameras have a same burst shooting speed of 5 fps, while for Daily photography, the D3400 is better and the same can be said for Landscape thanks to its better senesor.

If we take this aside, the EOS Rebel T5i beats the D3400 by having an articulating touch screen which has a 12% higher resolution ( 1,040k vs 921k-dots), and by having a microphone port, larger flash coverage ( 13m vs 12m), 21% larger pixel area and an AE bracketing.

On the other hand, the D3400 has 33% more pixels ( 24MP vs 18MP), 100% higher Max ISO (25,600 vs 12,800), 2 more focus points (11 vs 9), way stronger battery life ( 1200 vs 440 shots), and because of its Bluetooth capability which allows you share your content in a more convenient manner.

Hence, the Nikon D3400 is the winner in my opinion.

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