Canon EOS M50 Review
A camera with high-end quality with a streamlined interface and excellent autofocus
- Fantastic autofocus system
- Good burst shooting speed
- Large electronic viewfinder
- 4K video is recorded at a 1.6x crop
- Mediocre battery life
The entry-level Canon EOS M50 is designed for those who are looking to make their first upgrade from a basic compact camera or a smartphone. This doesn’t mean it lacks pro features – it has a 24.1-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, a 10-fps burst shooting capacity, and can record 4K video. It has everything a budding photographer could want.
The compact size and light weight make it a companion you can bring anywhere. Reliable metering and auto white balance make it a camera that’s easy to get great shots with, and the autofocus is so fast and accurate you can capture all the action.
The EOS M50 has many design cues similar to the M5, such as the central viewfinder and built-in flash. Canon calls it their ‘premium entry-level model’, slotting it in between the EOS M100 and the EOS M6.
The M50 is a bit more sparse than the M5, reflecting how it lacks some of the more advanced features of the more expensive model. Instead of three dials, there is a single dial, making it more beginner-friendly. You can buy it body-only or paired with the EF-M 15-45mm f/3.5-6.3 zoom.
Similarly, on the back, there’s just a four-way control pad and AF control besides a few simple controls; the rest is available through the touchscreen menu. The default menu option includes explanations for all of the various features, which is great for new photographers but you can disable it if you’re a Canon pro user.
The EOS M50 features a variable-angle touchscreen display that can be pulled outward to face a subject or angled to suit any shooting position. The touchscreen responds quickly to the touch and adjusting the autofocus works perfectly.
The electronic viewfinder has a crisp 2.36-million-dot resolution, on par with the EOS M5. The refresh rate is great and the magnification feels just right.
In single autofocus mode, you can shoot up to 10 frames per second. This drops to 7.4 frames per second in continuous autofocus mode, but that’s still excellent (beating the EOS M5, in fact.)
For connecting to the M50 you’re spoilt for choice, with Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth all represented. When connecting via Bluetooth, a constant low-power connection can be maintained so your smart device will receive images as they are taken (and presumably upload them to cloud image storage over Wi-Fi.)
Battery life is a little on the short size, netting you around 235 shots between charging. It might be worth getting a second battery if you’re planning on extended shooting.
The EOS M50 features a 24.1MP APS CMOS sensor that supports a sensitivity range of ISO100 – ISO51,200. Though it shares the same sensor as the M100 and M5, the Canon EOS M50 has a new image processor – DIGIC 8 – that Canon says improves the number of effective pixels.
The sensor is the heart of your camera and it performs very well. The detail is rich enough you’ll be able to create A3 prints without issue or get in super-close with some serious cropping.
Performance is excellent in low-light conditions, with very well controlled noise at high ISO. Even at ISO6400, there’s almost no color noise or luminance.
The new processor also means the Canon EOS M50 can shoot 4K video. The maximum frame rate here is 24 frames per second and you can create timelapse 4K footage. On the other hand, there’s a 1.6x crop on the video so the footage doesn’t use all of the sensor’s breadth. This makes filming in tight spaces or at arms’ length difficult. HD recording doesn’t have this issue.
The autofocus system is outstanding, with 143 AF points compared to the EOS M5’s 49 points. The points are spread out across the frame, so your subject can go just about anywhere and remain in focus.
The camera also includes Canon’s Eye AF, an AI autofocus system that can track anything with eyes. It’s particularly useful for selfies or vlogging, provided you’re not recording in 4K.
Focusing is fast, and you have the option to touch and drag the autofocus point with your thumb when you’re using the electronic viewfinder. As long as you’re not trying to focus on something super-fast, the camera does an outstanding job.
Canon EOS M50 vs. Sony A6000
A clear competitor to the EOS M50 is the Sony A6000, another mirrorless camera that happened to come out four years before the EOS M50. The A6000 is noticeably shorter but wider, and weighs a bit less than the EOS M50. The viewfinder on the A6000 is found on the left of the body as opposed to the M50’s central viewfinder.
The M50 has a noticeably better screen with higher resolution, touch capability, and multi-angle rotation. It can record video in 4K, where the A6000 is only able to record video up to HD resolution. The cameras have similar sensors but the M50 has better ISO sensitivity and the M50 has a silent shutter system.
Though the cameras are similar, the M50 does edge out the A6000 in many ways. In particular, the M50 is more user-friendly.
The Canon E05 M50 in many ways is a better camera than the M5 – it has an improved autofocus system, faster burst shooting, a vari-angle screen, and 4K video capture. The lack of body-mounted controls could be a negative for a pro shooter, but for the target audience, it’s got more than enough dials and buttons to get great shots. The excellent touchscreen interface only serves to make the M50 an even more accessible model for new shooters.
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