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Canon EOS Rebel SL3 Camera Review

Tested using Methodology v0.8
Reviewed Feb 08, 2021 at 07:40 am
Canon EOS Rebel SL3 Picture
7.0
Travel Photography
7.5
Landscape Photography
6.7
Sport & Wildlife Photography
7.2
Vlogging
7.0
Studio Video
3.3
Action Video
Body Type
DSLR
Mirrorless
No
Sensor Size
APS-C
Tested Lens
Canon EF-S 18–55mm f/4–5.6 IS STM

The Canon EOS Rebel SL3 is an APS-C DSLR camera that's compact and easy to use. It takes decently sharp images, has a reasonably effective autofocus system, and is fitted with a responsive, fully-articulated touchscreen interface. It offers a wide range of ports and connectivity options for videographers and can shoot 4k and FHD video. Unfortunately, the image and video stabilization performance isn't especially impressive overall, so you may need to use a tripod for some shots, and the video quality is mediocre in 4k.

Our Verdict

7.0 Travel Photography

The Canon SL3 is alright for travel photography. It offers satisfactory overall image quality, has an ergonomic design, and is equipped with an autofocus system well-suited to tracking moving objects. Its somewhat low minimum shutter speed isn't quite as well suited for complex long exposure photography as some alternatives. Its battery performance isn't particularly impressive, which could cut your shooting sessions short. Its plastic build doesn't feel especially sturdy, and the camera itself is a little on the bulky side, making it a hassle to carry around.

Pros
  • Ergonomic design.
  • Bright, fully-articulated touchscreen.
Cons
  • Relatively bulky for travel.
  • Mediocre battery life.
7.5 Landscape Photography

The Canon SL3 is decent for landscape photography. It keeps noise and graininess in images to a fairly low level, even when using moderately high ISO settings. Its fully-articulated screen is bright enough to be seen in direct sunlight. While it's relatively compact for a traditional DSLR, those accustomed to using point-and-shoots or phones to take pictures may find it a little bulky and tricky to carry around on a hike.

Pros
  • Ergonomic design.
  • Bright, fully-articulated touchscreen.
Cons
  • Relatively bulky for travel.
  • Mediocre battery life.
6.7 Sport & Wildlife Photography

The Canon SL3 is okay for sports and wildlife photography. It has a relatively high maximum shutter speed and has decently sharp image quality. Its autofocus system is reasonably effective and does a good job of tracking inanimate objects, like cars on a track. That said, its relatively slow continuous shooting speed can make it a little harder to capture specific shots of fast-moving subjects. Its silent shooting mode is also relatively loud, which may also scare off nearby wildlife.

Pros
  • Ergonomic design.
  • High maximum shutter speed.
Cons
  • Relatively bulky for travel.
  • Relatively slow continuous shooting speed.
7.2 Vlogging

The Canon SL3 is decent for vlogging. Its fully articulated screen makes it easy to monitor yourself on camera, but it isn't the best choice for recording in 4k due to its terrible face tracking, poor image stabilization, and mediocre video quality in this resolution, as the footage is lacking in detail and looks grainy. It performs somewhat better in FHD, with much-improved face tracking autofocus capability and passable video quality.

Pros
  • Ergonomic design.
  • Bright, fully-articulated touchscreen.
  • Great face-tracking capability in FHD.
Cons
  • Poor video stabilization performance in 4k.
  • Bad autofocus performance in 4k.
  • Mediocre recording quality in 4k.
7.0 Studio Video

The Canon SL3 is okay for studio video. It has an easy-to-use interface and has a wide selection of inputs and outputs for videography accessories, like a microphone, headphones, and an external recorder. It performs best in FHD, with superb autofocus performance and passable video quality in controlled lighting conditions. Unfortunately, video quality in 4k is mediocre, and autofocus performance in that resolution is poor.

Pros
  • Wide selection of ports for video accessories.
  • Easy-to-use menu system.
Cons
  • Bad autofocus performance in 4k.
  • Mediocre recording quality in 4k.
3.3 Action Video

The Canon SL3 isn't designed for action video. While it's compact for a DSLR, it's too large to be mounted on a helmet rig. It also isn't the most rugged of cameras, with no water resistance and cheap-feeling plastic construction. Lastly, it doesn't support 120 fps or 240 fps recording for slow-motion video.

Pros
  • Ergonomic design.
Cons
  • Relatively bulky for travel.
  • Poor video stabilization performance in 4k.
  • Limited selection of frame-rate recording options.
  • 7.0 Travel Photography
  • 7.5 Landscape Photography
  • 6.7 Sport & Wildlife Photography
  • 7.2 Vlogging
  • 7.0 Studio Video
  • 3.3 Action Video
  1. Updated Jun 06, 2022: After noticing a discrepancy with this camera's light falloff performance, we retested the lens and found that our original values were incorrect. The 'Light Falloff Picture', 'Light Falloff', and 'Luminance' tests have all been updated.
  2. Updated Apr 22, 2022: Converted to Test Bench 0.8.
  3. Updated Jan 21, 2022: Retested FHD bit rates and updated score for 'FHD Internal Recording'.
  4. Updated Jan 17, 2022: Retested FHD video quality.
  5. Updated Jan 12, 2022: Updated 'Lens Mount' from 'EF-S' to 'EF/EF-S'.
  6. Updated Feb 08, 2021: Review published.
  7. Updated Feb 08, 2021: Early access published.

Check Price

Black (Body Only)
SEE PRICE
B&H
Black W/18-55mm Lens
SEE PRICE
B&H
White (Body Only)
Unavailable
Amazon.com
White W/18-55mm Lens
SEE PRICE
B&H

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
6.1
Design
Portability
Height
3.8" (9.6 cm)
Width
4.8" (12.1 cm)
Depth
2.9" (7.4 cm)
Volume
52.4 in³ (858.5 cm³)
Weight
1.02 lbs (0.46 kg)
Weight With Lens
1.49 lbs (0.67 kg)
6.5
Design
Build Quality

  • Command dials, mode wheel, and buttons operate smoothly and precisely
  • Features a mostly plastic construction
  • Articulated screen hinge doesn't feel very solid
  • Input door is covered by a rubber flap
  • No cover for the camera's hot shoe

Design
Body
Water Resistance
No
Rugged
No
Hot Shoe
Yes
Customizable Button
No
Command Dial
1
Tripod Mount
Yes
Lens Mount
EF/EF-S Mount
Built-In Flash
Yes
Design
In The Box

  • Canon EOS Rebel SL3 body
  • EF-S 18-55mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens
  • Lens covers
  • Shoulder strap
  • 1x LP-E17 battery
  • Battery charger
  • Owner's manual

7.5
Design
Ergonomics & Comfort
Hand Grip: Small Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Medium Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Large Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Extra-Large Hand
Yes

  • Rubber eyecup around the viewfinder feels comfortable and well-padded
  • Hand grip should accommodate a wide variety of hand sizes, without fingers getting pinched between the body and lens
  • Hand grip has a textured surface that provides a secure hold
  • Adjusting aperture and ISO requires multiple button presses, as these settings can't be changed using only the command dials
  • SD card can't be changed while the camera is mounted on a tripod due to bottom-hinged compartment door

Design
Viewfinder
Viewfinder Type
Optical
Advertised Coverage
95%
Advertised Resolution
N/A
Advertised Magnification
0.87
9.4
Design
Screen
Screen Articulation Type
Fully-Articulated
Screen Max Brightness
930 cd/m²
Advertised Resolution
1.04 million dots
Size
3.0" (7.6 cm)
Touchscreen
Yes
9.0
Design
Menu System
Guide Mode
Yes
App Name
Canon Camera Connect

  • Intuitive to navigate
  • Guide mode is also a helpful feature for novice users who want to understand the camera's features
  • Some features may not appear in the camera's menu system until after they've been activated previously, like the focus peaking configuration options that only become visible after the LiveView Mode has been enabled

Design
Assistance Functions
Level Display
No
Grid Lines
Photo & Video
Histogram
Photo & Video
Zebra Pattern
No
Focus Peaking
Photo & Video
Waveform
No
6.5
Design
Lens
Lens Type
Interchangeable
Maximum Aperture
4.0 - 5.6
Max Aperture (Full-Frame Equivalent)
f/6.4
Minimum Focal Length
18 mm
Maximum Focal Length
55 mm
Max Focal Length (Full-Frame Equivalent)
89 mm
Optical Image Stabilization
Yes
Luminance
76.5%
Light Falloff
51%
Design
Sensor
Sensor Type
CMOS
Advertised Effective Pixels
24.1 MP
Processor
DIGIC 8
Extended ISO Minimum
N/A
Native ISO Minimum (Base ISO)
100
Native ISO Maximum
25,600
Tested Firmware
Ver. 1.0.2
6.4
Design
Battery
Battery Type
Canon LP-E17
USB Charging
No
Use When Charging
No
Advertised Battery Life In Photo
320 photos
Tested Battery Life In Video
115 min
Photo General
Photo General
Photo Features
JPEG File Format
Yes
Raw File Format
CR3
Shutter
Electronic and Mechanical
Slowest Shutter Speed
30 s
Fastest Shutter Speed
1/4,000 s
Silent Shooting
Yes
HDR
Yes
Time Lapse
Yes
5.8
Photo General
Photo Shooting Speed
Low Speed Continuous
N/A
High Speed Continuous
8 fps
Silent Shooting Continuous
3 fps
Raw Buffer Size
10 Photos
JPEG Buffer Size
52 Photos
Buffer Empty Time
7 s
6.9
Photo General
Photo Autofocus
Object Tracking Success Rate
76%
Face Tracking Success Rate
34%
Face Detection Distance
142" (360 cm)
Eye Detection
Yes
Advertised Coverage
N/A
Advertised Focus Points
9
6.1
Photo General
Photo Image Stabilization
Minimum Shutter Speed Achieved
1/40 s
In-Body Image Stabilization
No
Photo Image Quality
8.7
Photo Image Quality
Photo RAW Dynamic Range
SNR 18% After Exposure Recovery
26.29 dB
Dynamic Range At Base ISO
11.8 f-stops
Dynamic Range At ISO 800
10.3 f-stops
Dynamic Range At ISO 3200
9.2 f-stops
8.0
Photo Image Quality
Photo Sharpness
JPEG Sharpness At Base ISO
1.665 pixels
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 800
2.2394 pixels
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 3200
2.805 pixels
RAW Sharpness At Base ISO
2.844 pixels
RAW Sharpness At ISO 800
2.857 pixels
RAW Sharpness At ISO 3200
2.792 pixels
8.4
Photo Image Quality
Photo JPEG Color Accuracy
Color Difference (dE2000) At Base ISO
8.43
Color Difference (dE2000) At ISO 800
8.71
Color Difference (dE2000) At ISO 3200
9.04
8.2
Photo Image Quality
Photo JPEG Noise
SNR 18% At Base ISO
38.84 dB
SNR 18% At ISO 800
36.56 dB
SNR 18% At ISO 3200
34.07 dB
7.1
Photo Image Quality
Photo RAW Noise
RAW SNR 18% At Base ISO
39.14 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 200
37.57 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 400
35.47 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 800
33.16 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 1600
30.33 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 3200
27.47 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 6400
24.65 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 12800
22.95 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 25600
18.62 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 51200
N/A
Photo Image Quality
Test Scene Pictures Download
JPEG Picture At Base ISO Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 400 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 800 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 1600 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 3200 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 6400 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 12800 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 25600 Download
JPEG Picture At ISO 51200 N/A
RAW Picture At Base ISO Download
RAW Picture At ISO 400 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 800 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 1600 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 3200 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 6400 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 12800 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 25600 Download
RAW Picture At ISO 51200 N/A
Pictures Sample Gallery
Pictures Sample Gallery
The Skate Park Picture
JPEG Skate Park Picture Download
RAW Skate Park Picture Download
Pictures Sample Gallery
The Polish Church Picture
JPEG Polish Church Picture Download
RAW Polish Church Picture Download
Pictures Sample Gallery
The Studio Picture
JPEG Studio Picture Download
RAW Studio Picture Download
Pictures Sample Gallery
The Stairway Picture
JPEG Stairway Picture Download
RAW Stairway Picture Download
Video General
Video General
Video Features
Full HD Video
Yes
4k Video
Yes
6k Video
No
Clean HDMI Output
Yes
Advertised Max Chroma Sampling Over HDMI
Not Advertised
Advertised Max Bit Depth Over HDMI
N/A
Log Picture Profile
No
Recording Light
No
Video General
Audio
Audio Test Sample
Audio Recording
Stereo
Microphone Level Display
No
Video General
Video File Format And Compression
MP4 H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
Yes
MP4 H.265 / HEVC
No
MOV H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
MOV H.265 / HEVC
No
AVCHD H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
All-I Compression
No
4k Video
3.0
4k Video
4k Video Frame Rate
240 fps In 4k
No
120 fps In 4k
No
60 fps In 4k
No
30 fps In 4k
No
24 fps In 4k
Yes, with a Crop
4k Crop At Max Available fps
1.54 x
7.8
4k Video
4k Video Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In 4k
120 Mbps
Bitrate Minimum In 4k
120 Mbps
Chroma Sampling In 4k
4:2:0
Bit Depth In 4k
8 Bit
Record Time Limit In 4k
30 min
Overheat Recording Interruptions in 4k
0
4.7
4k Video
4k Video Autofocus Performance
Object Tracking In 4k
6.5
Face Tracking In 4k
1.0
Face Detection In 4k
Yes
Eye Detection In 4k
Yes
2.3
4k Video
4k Video Stabilization
Walking Test In 4k
16.75 pixels/frame
Running Test In 4k
81.60 pixels/frame
In-Body Video Image Stabilization In 4k
No
4k Video Stabilization Crop
1.43 x
6.0
4k Video
4k Video Quality
Low Light Capability In 4k
5.0
Test Scene Extract In 4k
7.0
0.7
4k Video
4k Video Rolling Shutter Effect
4k Rolling Shutter
14.0°
Full HD Video
5.5
Full HD Video
FHD Video Frame Rate
240 fps In FHD
No
120 fps In FHD
No
60 fps In FHD
Yes
30 fps In FHD
Yes
24 fps In FHD
No
FHD Crop At Max Available fps
1 x
7.6
Full HD Video
FHD Video Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In FHD
60 Mbps
Bitrate Minimum In FHD
12 Mbps
Chroma Sampling In FHD
4:2:0
Bit Depth In FHD
8 Bit
Record Time Limit in FHD
30 min
7.9
Full HD Video
FHD Video Autofocus Performance
Object Tracking In FHD
7.5
Face Tracking In FHD
7.5
Face Detection In FHD
Yes
Eye Detection In FHD
Yes
6.5
Full HD Video
FHD Video Stabilization
Walking Test In FHD
6.84 pixels/frame
Running Test In FHD
14.92 pixels/frame
In-Body Video Image Stabilization In FHD
No
FHD Video Stabilization Crop
1.42 x
5.5
Full HD Video
FHD Video Quality
Low Light Capability In FHD
5.0
Test Scene Extract In FHD
6.0
7.2
Full HD Video
FHD Video Rolling Shutter Effect
FHD Rolling Shutter
3.7°
Storage And Connectivity
Storage And Connectivity
Storage
Card 1 Slot
SD Card UHS-I
Card 2 Slot
No 2nd Card Slot
8.8
Storage And Connectivity
Inputs / Outputs
USB
Micro USB
HDMI
Mini (Type C)
Headphones
Yes
Microphone
Stereo
Wi-Fi
Yes
Bluetooth
Yes

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Canon Rebel SL3 comes in two color variants: 'Black' and 'White'. We tested the 'Black' variant with the EF-S 18-55mm F/4-5.6 IS STM lens, and you can see its label here. That said, we expect the 'White' variant to perform similarly overall. It can also be purchased in either color scheme without a lens at all.

If someone comes across a differently-equipped variant of the Canon SL3, let us know in the discussions so we can update our review.

Compared To Other Cameras

Nikon D780

The Nikon D780 is better than the Canon EOS Rebel SL3, but they're aimed at photographers of different experience levels. The Canon is an entry-level DSLR with an APS-C sensor. The Nikon is an enthusiast-grade DSLR with a full-frame sensor, meaning it performs better in low light and offers more advanced features like a weather-sealed body, more physical buttons and dials, and more customization options. It has a more advanced autofocus hybrid autofocus system that's more reliable at tracking moving subjects, and it can shoot 4k video without a crop and has with more frame rate options. Its battery life is considerably longer, too. The Nikon is also much heavier and bulkier than the Canon.

Discussions