The New Canon Rebel T6 / 1300D is a great introduction to the world of DSLR Photography

Canon Rebel T6

The Canon EOS 1300D / Rebel T6 is pitched at photographers moving up from compacts or bridge cameras, and slots in below the more advanced T6i and T6s models. The Canon Rebel T6 has an improved 18-megapixel sensor and updated DIGIC 4+ processor and offers WiFi and NFC connectivity and much more.

The new Canon Rebel T6 or EOS 1300D replaces the Rebel T5/ EOS 1200D as the company’s most accessible and cost conscious entry-level DSLR camera. The most obvious improvements are the addition of built-in Wi-Fi and NFC. There are also some new scene modes and effects. However, the cost has been kept right down, to compete with high end compacts and bridge cameras – and it is clear that their target is enthusiasts who want to expand their photographic boundaries and explore digital SLR cameras.

Watch our 1300D review video

The new Canon camera has the same 18 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor as the Rebel T5/ EOS 1200D. This sensor has proved itself very reliable int he past with excellent color and image quality. The processor has been upgraded from the DIGIC4 to the DIGIC4+. This might seem like it is only an incremental improvement, but Canon claim that the DIGIC4+ is 60% faster than its older sibling. The LCD screen on the back of the camera is double the resolution of the Rebel T5/1200D and it really shows, both in image quality and color quality. This is a very necessary improvement if they want to capture the compact/mobile phone photographers as they are used to using the screen to compose their shots.

Key Features 0f the Canon 1300D / Rebel T6

The 1300D / Rebel T6 is a great all-round camera and a perfect DSLR for learning the basics of photography through to some of the finer points of image making. Let’s not get too fascinated by the specs, but keep them in mind to help us realize how powerful this small machine really is.

18 MP (APS-C) CMOS sensor: The Canon 1300D has an APS-C CMOS sensor and it gives great quality images, as would be expected from a Canon. It gives and effective 1.6X field of view (this means that, for example, a 50mm lens would have an effective focal length of 80mm).  The 18 MP (megapixel) image files  will provide a 51MB (megabyte) photograph which is more than enough for nearly every photographic need. The resulting pictures can be reasonably cropped or blown up without significant loss of quality.

DIGIC 4+ processor: This is the engine. Canon’s powerful image processor provides high-speed operation, very clear images with excellent color reproduction, and enhanced movie recording. It s estimated to be 60% faster than the DIGIC4 and the increased processor speed reduces the amount of noise in images, especially in low light.

3 fps continuous shooting: Three frames-per- second doesn’t make this the hottest sports camera, but is perfectly good for a competent action photographer. The faster processor does mean that you can shoot continuous without buffering until the card is full if required with hardly any shutter lag.

High ISO (100-6400, extendable to 12800 equivalent): With such a wide range, the processor really does help to shoot good images in low light. This means detailed and natural-looking pictures and movies can be captured discreetly, with ease. However, most photographers won’t want to go beyond 3200.

High-resolution LCD monitor: The resolution for the 1300D has been significantly increased, offering a 7.5 cm (3.0-in.) 920k-dot monitor, with wide-viewing angle and adjustable brightness settings. The screen is used to navigate the tabs, which allow you to change many of the settings for the camera, and also lets you see the details in your photos and movies. This is where the quality of the resolution really makes a difference, making it very useful for composing your shot. There is also a function to enlarge the image, to check focus.

9-point AF system: The 9 focus points give the 1300D a solid autofocus performance, in a diamond pattern in the centre of the frame. The system uses both normal and high-precision focus, depending on the aperture and available light, so your images contain crisp and clear detail. An AI Servo AF system achieves and maintains consistent focus with solid reliability, allowing some tracking focus and multi-focusing.

Builtin WiFI: This is a great feature that allows you to send your images to social networking sites or send shots to family and friends immediately. There is a useful Canon App which will allow you to browse and post images and videos to social media sites. The WiFi connectivity also allows easy remote shooting, which is particularly useful for landscape or night-time shooting. The builtin NFC (Near Field Communication) helps provide a good connection to numerous compatible Android devices to transfer images and videos. Wireless capabilities also allow users to use their compatible smart devices* to remotely control the camera, which is useful for self-portraits and group shots or shooting from a distance as long as the camera is in wireless range. Some of the 1300D’s options are available remotely – AF frame modes (single-point/face detection); shoot in continuous shooting mode; and utilize the AF button.

Creative Options:  The Modes in Basic+ allow you to change the scene type or ambience of a given shot simply by using the control screen. There are 9 choices offering different exposures and B/W. The EOS 1300D is loaded with features to help you take more interesting pictures and videos. It is all operated on the quick control screen. Food mode allows you to take picture which emphasize bright colors to make your food shots appear more appetizing. The camera also has brief shooting guides, so that the new photographer does not get lost in the settings.

Creative filters: The 1300D offers 5 different creative filters for still images: Grainy B/W, Soft Focus, Fisheye, Miniature Effect and Toy camera. They can be pretty cool to use and are useful if you want to edit in camera before uploading to the web.

Auto White Balance: The 1300D has two automatic white balance settings: white balance to ambience priority, which tries to maintain the color tones, or white priority, which reduces them to ensure neutral white lighting. You can also change the white balance to specific settings depending on the color cast of the environment or save selected settings. They can be quite effective and the custom setting, where you set your own custom white balance, can be very useful.

Scene Intelligent Auto Mode: Perfect for the beginner, this mode analyzes the scene and chooses the best exposure and enhancements to produce the best shot. It uses various settings – picture style, auto white balance and automatic exposure, to ensure that the picture you are taking is as good as it can be. There is also a version of this for movie mode.

High performance viewfinder: The Optical Viewfinder on the EOS Rebel T6 camera lets you quickly line up and capture a photo in nearly any situation. It helps you accurately see what the lens sees even in bright sunlight, so you can be sure you’re taking the picture you want.

Compatible with ef and ef-s canon lenses: The EOS Rebel T6 camera is compatible with all Canon lenses in the EF and EF-S lineup. Unlocking a new world of possibilities, these lenses range from ultra-wide angle for grand, scenic landscapes, to super telephoto which can help you capture sports, wildlife and more from afar. Each Canon lens employs advanced optical expertise and micron-precision engineering to help deliver phenomenal performance in virtually all facets of the photographic process. Numerous lenses feature Canon’s sophisticated Optical Image Stabilizer technology to minimize the effect of camera shake. Through Canon lenses, photographers can truly maximize the quality and liberating performance of the EOS Rebel T6.

Watch our Canon 1300D/ Rebel T6 setup video

Canon Rebel T6/1300D Guide

Canon rebel T6 guideThis is a great guide to canon’s latest DSLR. The Canon Rebel T6 or EOS 1300D is aimed at enthusiasts who want to move up from compact or bridge cameras. This Guide will explain what the Canon Rebel T6 has to offer and also compare it with it’s closest rivals. It is Absolutely Free! Just click HERE and download it straight away.

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How to set up your canon 1300D / Rebel T6

1) Charge your battery
It is always better to fully charge your battery before you start to use it for the first time. It will be tempting to put the battery in and take advantage of whatever charge is in it, but in our experience it is better for the long-term performance of the battery if you charge the battery to full and use it down to zero. You can check the battery’s charge level by checking the battery indicator, bottom left of the LCD screen, when you switch on the camera. Also, it is wise to use the Canon battery as opposed to a generic battery. Sometimes the generic batteries are not recognized by the camera or accessories. At room temperature a full battery recharge will take about two hours. Always switch off the camera before removing the battery.

2) Attach your lens
The lens should be an EF or EF-S lens for you to get the most out of the camera functionality.

3) Insert the memory card
Suitable memory cards are: SD, SDHC and SDXC cards. Make sure that the card’s write-protect switch is set to enable writing and erasing. The Memory card is inserted in the same chamber used by the battery, in the bottom of the camera. Do not force it.

4) Turn on the camera
Using the on/off switch next to the Mode Dial.

5) Select your language, time zone and date
The first time the camera is switched on, the screen will ask you to set the date (and format), timezone and language. The date and time information will be added to the metadata for each image that you shoot. You change these details by using the crosskeys and pressing set, when completed. If you can be bothered, you can go in and change this information if you move to a different time zone.

6) Format your memory card
Obviously, we recommend that you get the best memory card that you can, particularly if you intend to shoot much video. SDHC cards tend to be faster and more reliable, and professionals tend to use SanDisk cards because of their lifetime warranty. We always recommend that you format your card before you start to use it. Put your card into the camera and select Format card under the Set Up Tab1 and press set in the crosskeys. The camera will warn you that all data will be lost (and everything, even protected images and movies will be lost if you select this). Select OK, then press set. Low level formatting is useful if you just want to erase everything off the card, or if you think the card read speed seems slow. For low level format, select Low Level Format and press OK. The menu will reappear when the formatting is completed. Personally, I would format my card after every full use (i.e. after I have done a shoot and uploaded my images or movies to a hard drive).

7) Adjust the viewfinder to your eyesight
Use the dial which is above right of the viewfinder eyepiece to change the focus of the viewfinder. Remember, this does not affect the focus of the lens or the camera, just you. This is particularly useful if you wear glasses when using a camera. Make sure that the lens cap is off. Direct the camera at something light colored and look through the viewfinder to see the thin black lines that show the camera’s Autofocus area. Check out the data information at the bottom of the screen. Turn the Dioptric adjuster until the lines and the data look sharp. Obviously this can be changed at any time.

8) Set your Auto Off Timer setting
There is nothing more irritating than the camera switching itself off after only a few seconds. Whilst it helps to save battery life, it can interrupt your train of thought and slow you down. You can change the length of time it takes for the camera to turn off. Go to Settings Tab1 and select Auto power off. Press set and change the setting, then press set again.

9) Adjust the LCD monitor brightness
Go to Settings Tab 2 and choose LCD brightness. Then use the crosskeys to adjust the brightness. Press set to complete. The optimum setting for checking exposure on the LCD screen is 4.

10) Set your ISO
ISO manages the sensitivity of you sensor to the light coming into the camera. The 1300D will be on AUTO ISO setting to begin with, which is very convenient in most cases. However, you will want to control this at some point, not least because the ISO setting has a direct impact on the quality of your image. It is easy to control the ISO by using the crosskeys. Press the top one, labelled ISO, and the ISO options will appear on the LCD screen. Use the left/right crosskeys or the Main dial to select the ISO, then press set. As a rule of thumb, ISO 100-400 is suitable for sunny/bright light, ISO 400-1600 for overcast/dusk, ISO 1600-6400 for low light/night-time shots. I would advise not to go beyond ISO 800 under normal circumstances – usually you can change the shutter speed or aperture to keep the ISO down. If in doubt, take the shot and check the exposure on the LCD screen for a rough guide.

11) Set JPEG quality
Using JPEG compression means that you will lose some degree of quality in your image immediately. However In most cases it is not noticeable and the space saving advantage is overwhelming. First go to Shooting Tab 1 and select Image Quality. We recommend that you choose , which in the 1300D is rated highest quality. Whilst this JPEG setting takes up the most memory on your card, it keeps as much information as possible and so helps you to produce the best image outcome. If you don’t want to lose any quality, you can save your images as RAW files, or both RAW and JPEG.

12) Learn how to read the information in your playback options When you have taken your photos, you can learn an enormous mount about them by using the review options. The basic information will tell you the shutter speed, f-number and exposure rating if it has been adjusted. However, press the Display button twice and you will also be given ISO, file size, metering, shutter and histogram information. The RGB Histogram setting splits the image into its constituent colors, Red, Green and Blue so that you can see the color density.

13) Setting white balance
Our eyes are so attuned to our light sources that we rarely notice the differences between them. However your camera is far more objective and you will find that ambient light that you thought was white will have green or orange color casts that effect the quality of your images. The 1300D has two auto options – both of which work pretty well. Auto with ambience priority will try to the white balance to the ambient light, giving a natural look. Auto with White priority will automatically set a pure white balance, often making the image seem more cold and clinical. In the basic modes Auto Ambience priority is the default, except for the food option, where Auto White priority is the default. To change white balance, go to the crosskeys and choose the bottom button, WB. You will then be presented with options, which can be navigated via the crosskeys or the Dial Mode.

Watch our 1300D unboxing video

Canon Rebel T6/1300D Guide

Canon rebel T6 guideThis is a great guide to canon’s latest DSLR. The Canon Rebel T6 or EOS 1300D is aimed at enthusiasts who want to move up from compact or bridge cameras. This Guide will explain what the Canon Rebel T6 has to offer and also compare it with it’s closest rivals. It is Absolutely Free! Just click HERE and download it straight away.

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The Modes on The Canon 1300D / Rebel T6

Auto Mode: This Mode is the basic point-and-shoot mode that will automatically choose the best Aperture, ISO and Shutter-speed for the job in hand. All the AF-points will be used and the camera will automatically focus on the nearest object. If the object is moving, the camera will switch from ONE SHOT AF to AI SERVO, which will maintain focus. If required, the built in flash will operate.

Auto Mode No Flash: If the flash is not wanted, turn the dial one more click and the camera will shoot automatically, still choosing the best aperture, ISO and shutter-speed but without the flash. Shooting without flash can slow down shutter speed and lose detail in dark conditions. However it is useful for shooting in places (like museums) where flash photography is not permitted or when the darkness contributes to the shot (candles, for example).

Creative Auto Mode: This Mode has the same settings as the Auto Mode. However, it allows you to change the depth of field, Flash firing and Drive/ Self-timer. Changing depth of field is useful for shooting portraits or close up shots, when you want to lose the background and make the subject stand out more. You can change the Flash settings to Auto (when the camera thinks it is required), ON (it will flash on every shot) or OFF. Drive options allow single or continuous shooting and the Self-timer Allows a 10 second delay and delay and multiple shots.

Portrait Mode: This Mode can be used for taking portraits. The camera will prioritize skin tones. The picture will be shot with a shallow depth of field (wide aperture) to make the in-focus subject stand out more. Whenever shooting portraits, focus on the face If it is a tight portrait, focus on the eyes and if the head is turned, the front eye. This Mode will allow you to shoot 3 frames per second if you keep the Shutter button down, which will allow you to get different facial expressions. It will also fire the flash if required – though you will only fire single shots for that. The best lens for portraits is one between 80mm and 105mm.

Landscape Mode: This Mode slows down the shutter speed to give more depth of field and greater detail in your shots. Landscape mode will turn off the built in flash and this mode should ideally be used with a tripod. The camera will try to boost greens and blues in the image and boosts the sharpness during processing. It tries to get down to the lowest ISO to give you maximum detail.

Close up Mode: As the name suggests this is ideal for close up photography (though a macro lens will give you more scope in this area). Again this should be used with a tripod. The camera will keep the aperture small, but try to maintain a high shutter speed. It will achieve this by using the flash or raising the ISO. This is when the Focal Plane Mark becomes useful as you can move the camera as close as possible to the object.

Sports Mode: This switches the camera to a higher ISO and a fast shutter speed to capture the action. It engages continuous shutter, so keeping the shutter button down will fire 3 frames per second. It also switches off the built in flash. It will switch the focus mode to AI Servo and widen the aperture. Be aware of noise, though, which can slip in to your images when you shoot at a high ISO (above 3200).

Food Mode: This Mode emphasizes the vivid colors associated with bright, fresh food. The shutter speed is slowed and the aperture is reduced to give a wider depth of field. The built in flash is switched off to prevent reflections or glare. There is flexibility within the setting to increase or decrease the reds (called Color tone). This setting should not be used if you are photographing people with food, as their skin tones may look unnatural.

Night Portrait: addresses the problem of photographing a subject in relative darkness. The usual result is an overexposed face with the background lost – and so no context. This mode slows the shutter speed to give you more background and less overexposure of the subject in the foreground. A tripod is essential really for this sort of shot. The builtin flash will function – so make sure you are close enough to the subject for the flash to have effect. If the image looks too dark, try to move closer to the subject.

Creative Filters on the 1300D Rebel T6

The Canon 1300D has 5 creative filters. They are: Grainy black and white, Soft focus, Fish eye, Miniature effect and toy camera. They enable you to edit your pictures and apply filters in-camera, which is very useful if you want to edit pictures and send them straight to your social media platforms using the camera’s wifi connectivity functions. They are very easy to use, and create a new image, so that you can keep the original safe.

Flash options for the Canon 1300D Rebel T6

Like most DSLR cameras, the Canon 1300d, or Rebel T6, has a pop-up flash and also a hotshoe for an external flashgun. The pop-up flash is very good for casual photography, perhaps of family or friends. It has a guide number of 90, which means that it is effective over a distance of about 2-3 metres under normal settings. The advantage of the pop-up flash is that, being built into the camera, you always have it with you, and it is automatically dedicated, using the camera’s ETTL system (Evaluative Through The Lens), which means that the camera shares it’s exposure settings with the flash so that the picture looks good.

This is particularly useful if you are using the flash to fill-in. The other advantage is that if you are using the Basic Modes (automatic through to night portrait), then the camera will decide if flash is required, so you don’t have to think about it. There is also an option to make the flash fire, even if the camera doesn’t think you need it. The options you can change are limited compared to the external flash, but one useful choice is front curtain or rear curtain, because this will have an effect on how your action pictures are shot. If the flash is set to first curtain, then the flash will fire as the shutter opens. If the flash is set to rear curtain, then the flash will fire just before the shutter closes. This may not seem important, but if you are shooting fast moving subjects, firing the flash first will make it look like the subject is moving backwards ( because the subject is frozen by the flash, and then there is some ghostly movement as the subject moves forward). If the flash fires at the end of the shot, the the ghostly movement happens first, and the the subject is frozen by the flash, which makes the subject like like they are going forwards. You can also change the exposure compensation settings and the ETTL choosing either evaluative or average. In this instance, Evaluative will set the flash according the the light on the subject, whereas Average will set the flash according to an average of all the light in the frame. Because the flash is using ETTL, it knows the lens settings, so it will concentrate the flash light if the lens is zoomed ( 50 -100mm) or disperse the light if the lens is on a wide focal length (24mm, for example). There are more creative options for the external flash, though that does depend to some degree on the flash gun you have.

Movie settings for the Canon 1300D Rebel T6

This is a really good camera for shooting both stills and movies. You need to be in the Video Mode to shoot movies. If you turn the Dial Mode round to the very bottom option, which shows a video camera, and you will hear that the mirror inside the camera pop up. That enables you to see through the viewing screen at the back which is the only way you can shoot video on this camera. It also gives you access to the menu tabs which are dedicated to video and the first thing that you really need to do here is choose your video system. There are two systems, one is PAL and the other is NTSC. NTSC tends to be the system which is operated in the United States and PAL tends to be the system which is operated in Europe and other parts of the world.

The second thing you need to think about is file size and frame rate. These things are quite important because they will decide the quality of the videos that you shoot. This camera will shoot 1080p which is full HD and it will also shoot 720p which is standard HD – both of which are perfectly acceptable for social media platforms. In order to make those changes goto Video Tab 2 and find Movie Recording Size. If we press on that option then we get four choices. Depending on whether you’ve chosen NTSC or PAL, you maximum rates will be either 60fps or 50fps. The third thing you need to think about when shooting movies with this camera is exposure. When you’re shooting stills with the Canon 1300D you have lots of choices. They’re all on the Mode Dial and they go from entirely manual to semi-automatic and then to entirely automatic options In most of these Modes the camera is trying to get the best exposure for the stills that you’re shooting within the given parameters that you have presented to it. With movies it’s different. You have two options – you can either shoot Automatic or you can shoot Manual. With Automatic in the movie setting the camera will try to get the best possible exposure for you and in many cases it works very well. However, if you want to go into Manual there are different ways of changing the various parameters for Manual that are different to the way that you would do that for stills. In the Menu, Movie Exposure is in Video Tab 1 and you get the two options, Auto or Manual. If you choose to go into Manual then you have much more control over the settings that you can have. You will see that you have options for setting the Shutter Speed for setting the Aperture and for setting the ISO. For the Shutter Speed, rotate Main Dial. By depressing the AV button here and rotating that Main Dial you can change the Aperture. The ISO is changed by pressing the flash button and rotating the Main Dial.

Lenses for the canon 1300D / Rebel T6

Ok, so you have just spent some money on a new body but, as the sensors get better and the files get bigger, your glass is becoming more important. After all, there is no point having a great camera if your lenses are rubbish, is there? Here are some lenses we think should find a place in every Canon photographer’s bag.

The first thing to consider when looking for a lens, is whether the lens is going to be compatible with the 1300D. The camera does not have an internal motor, therefore, if you want a fully functioning lens, then you should look for lens with its own internal motor. For Canon lenses, the abbreviations you are looking for are EF and EF-S. For Tamron lenses look for AF or USM. For Sigma lenses look for HSM. Lenses without internal motors can still be used on your 1300D, but you will have to focus manually. If you bought a kit lens with your camera, it will be EF-S.

Secondly, remember that the 1300D is an APS-C camera. So ideally you should have a APS-C lens. If you put a Full Frame lens on to your 1300D the focal length is increased by a factor of approximately 1.5 i.e. a 50mm lens becomes a 75mm lens.

Thirdly, ALWAYS change lenses in a clean environment. Make sure that you camera is facing to the floor, to prevent dust falling into it when the lens is being changed.

EF vs. EF-S Lenses

Put simply, Canon EF-S lenses are designed solely for use on Canon APS-C DSLRs, like the Canon 1300D. Canon EF lenses are designed to work with full frame and APS-C DSLRs from Canon. Canon EF-S lenses have a smaller image circle that is only big enough to cover the smaller sensor found on Canon APS-C cameras. If a Canon EF-S lens were to be used on a full frame DSLR, it would produce heavy vignetting (the corners would be black) because the image circle produced by the lens is too small to cover the larger sensor. Canon EF lenses have been around since the film SLR days. They were designed to cover a 35mm film frame. Because EF lenses have a larger image circle, they will cover full frame sensors and APS-C sensors.

Benefits of EF-S Lenses

Canon EF-S lenses are generally smaller, lighter and cheaper than Canon EF lenses because less glass and a smaller lens barrel is required to produce an equivalent field of view for a lens that goes on an APS-C camera, like the Canon Rebel line, when compared to a full frame camera.

Should I Buy EF or EF-S Lenses?

So, which lens should you buy?  If you want an extremely wide angle lens for your 1300D, then you’ll need to look at the EF-S line of lenses and multiply the  focal range by 1.6 so, for example, a 10-22mm lens,  will look like a 16-35mm lens on your camera. Quality EF-S lenses hold their resale value pretty well.

Types of Lens

Wide angle: Generally, anything under 35mm is regarded as a wide angle lens. Wide angle lenses appear to push the subject away from you which makes it smaller in the frame. However, these lenses let you include much more space in your frame and also offer a much larger depth of field. This makes them ideal for landscape photography and reportage.

Normal: Anything between 35mm and 70mm is considered to be normal, not least because it is very close to how the human eye sees the world. They are appropriate for casual snaps and portrait shots.

Telephoto: Anything above about 70mm can be regarded as a telephoto lens, because they bring the subject closer to you and start to restrict the space in the frame. These lenses tend to offer a shallow depth of field, thus blurring the background. They are ideal for nature photography and taking pictures from a distance.

Prime Lenses and Zoom Lenses

There are two types of lenses you are likely to see for the Canon 1300D, prime lenses and zoom lenses. Prime lenses have a single focal length, perhaps 35mm or 50mm, for example. They rend to be cheaper, because they have fewer moving parts and less glass. They also tend to be sharper and will have a constant aperture. Often they will have a wide aperture range and be very good for shallow depth of field or action photography. In video, they are good at reproducing the cinematic look with a shallow depth of field. However, because they are fixed focal lengths you will need to have several of them to cover the same focal range as a zoom.

A zoom lens has a variable focal length, 18mm-55mm perhaps or 80mm-200mm. They have a complicated mechanism inside and a few lenses that combine to give the best results within the lenses. Often they do not maintain an aperture throughout the range. For example, the 18mm-55mm kit lens offers a maximum of f3.5 at 18mm, but f5.3 at 55mm. Some zoom lenses will maintain aperture throughout, but they are very expensive. They also tend to be less sharp at the edges of their focal range and at the aperture extremes. Zoom lenses can save you a lot of time as you don’t have to keep changing lenses. You don’t have to move the camera around so much to keep your frames consistent and you don’t need to buy as many lenses. Generally speaking, zoom lenses are great for documentary style video making. If you have bought the kit lens, then I would suggest our next lens should be a prime lens…

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Download our free Guide to the new Canon Eos 1300D / Rebel T6 here

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Check out the canon website for more information