Canon SL3 Field Test Part I

The tiny, record-making EOS DSLR gets its first real world test!

by Mike Tomkins |

Mirrorless cameras might be where it's at these days, but what if you prefer an optical viewfinder to an electronic one or, worse still, to shooting at arm's length on the LCD? Well, DSLRs might not be as compact as their mirror-free brethren, but that's not to say they have to be big, bulky behemoths either.

A little EOS SL-series history to set the stage
Back in 2013, Canon decided to gift its long-running EOS camera series with a new model, aimed at taking on its mirrorless rivals by paring away all the fat. The lean-as-could-be Canon SL1 was the result, and not only was it the world's lightest DSLR at the time, it actually remains the world's smallest DSLR to this day.

A couple of years later in 2015, Nikon responded to its rival with the D5500, which it announced as the world's smallest and lightest DSLR with an articulated LCD monitor, a handy convenience the SL1 lacked. Fast-forward two years to 2017, though, and Canon took both titles from its rival with the Canon SL2. While not as small and light as its predecessor, it was more feature-rich in general than was its predecessor, and boasted better image quality and performance to boot.

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