How to Use Movie Mode on Canon Rebel T6i

In Photography by Jerad Hill17 Comments

DSLR Cameras are quickly becoming the de facto standard for entry-level cinematography ever since the addition of video recording. No longer relegated to just photos, SLR cameras can now be used to take full HD resolution video using high quality lenses and sensors. Even for higher budget productions such as for television and movies, the flexibility and compactness of DSLR cameras makes for a great cinematic tool. As a capable entry into this new medium, here’s how to use the Canon Rebel T6i to create beautiful footage using Movie Mode:

To enter Movie Mode, switch the ON/OFF power toggle past the ON setting to the camera icon. Let’s first configure our settings for Movie Mode:

In movie mode, open the settings menu. You’ll see that the fourth and fifth tabs have changed icons. These are where your movie mode settings can be adjusted:

  • AF Method. This is the method of autofocus used during video recording. There are three options: Face + Tracking keeps the focus point on faces if detected, FlexiZone Multi focuses on a wide area of up to 31 AF points that can be either automatically or manually selected, and FlexiZone Single lets you focus on a single point in the frame.
  • Movie Servo AF can be enabled or disabled to either allow or prevent autofocus during video.
  • AF with Shutter button during movie recording toggles between enabling or disabling autofocus using the shutter button while recording video.
  • Grid display shows a grid on the screen of your choosing: off, 3×3, 6×4, or 3×3 + diagonals.
  • Metering timer changes how long the exposure setting is displayed.
  • On the second video settings tab, Movie recording size adjusts the recording resolution, framerate, and compression level of your videos:
    • Full HD (1920x1080p) at 29.97 FPS.
    • Full HD (1920x1080p) at 29.97 FPS with light compression.
    • Full HD (1920x1080p) at 23.98 FPS.
    • HD (1280x720p) at 59.94 FPS.
    • HD (1280x720p) at 29.97 FPS with light compression.
    • VGA (640x480p) at 29.97 FPS.
    • VGA (640x480p) at 29.97 FPS with light compression.
  • Sound recording menu:
    • Sound recording can be set to auto, manual, or disable.
    • Recording level gives you a slider to change the volume of your recordings.
    • Wind filter/Attenuator lets you enable or disable either of these options. The Wind filter reduces wind noise through the built-in microphone, and Attenuator will adjust the recording level before filming to fit the ambient noise level of your environment. When enabled, the recording level will be adjusted even if the Sound recording option is set to manual.
  • Video snapshot is a feature that lets you take short video shots during normal camera operation that can be strung together to make a short highlight reel. To begin recording a movie, press the START/STOP button while in movie mode. You will see a red dot icon in the top right of the screen to indicate that video is being recorded.

Some tips for using Movie Mode:

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  • Before recording, focus can be set by default using a shutter button half press. This will use whatever the current autofocus mode is.
  • In Movie mode, ISO is adjusted automatically between 100 and 6400 unless in Manual mode.
  • In Manual shooting mode, ISO can be adjusted using the ISO button and set as needed.
  • Still photos can still be taken while filming by fully pressing the shutter button, but taking a photo while filming will pause the video recording for approximately 1 second.


  1. When shooting movies on my T6i, the Sound rec. setting only gives me “On” and “Off” options (regardless of whether or not I have an external mic plugged in).

    I can’t seem to get the Auto, Manual or Disable settings to come up.


  2. Kirk, set the wheel to “MANUAL” and a different menu will pop up. That one let’s you adjust the sound and see the sound bars as you talk in to the microphone.

  3. I have been trying to figure out why my recordings always have a blue look to them, mostly in the sunlight. How can I fix this because I want it to be more true to color.

    1. Author

      This is probably due to a white balance option. I would set a custom white balance or choose from one of the presets. Auto white balance is going to change and can often look either too warm or cold.

  4. So, I see a section explaining video snapshot. Is there a way I can take stills from video? What I mean by this is, after recording a movie, when in review mode and watching the movie, is there a way I can take a still from the movie? My old, less fancy camera had this feature, and it would be something that would come in handy for me in about a month.

    1. Author

      I don’t believe the T6i has this feature. At least it didn’t when I had the camera. You would need to do this using software on your computer. Keep in mind that you will only get images that are 1920 pixels in width from HD video and they may be blurry unless you record with a faster shutter speed.

  5. My T6i goes to black and comes back up to normal video during recording. How do I stop this?

  6. The color and lighting changes constantly during my videos. Can that be stopped?

    1. Author

      Probably has a what to do with your white balance. Also if you are shooting in automatic mode or program auto, you will end up with variable lighting and color.

  7. trying to video record a Zumba class, focusing on the instructor in the mirror. There is a wall of windows behind my tripod. Evening class (still some daylight left). Fast moving subject(s), up to 12-20 others in same class…. so they are also showing up in the mirror during song routine.
    My issues are…. 1) focus gets blurry 2) there’s a pop of light that just happens while recording? (just real quick and that’s it? will do this multiple times while recording?) 3) metering mode shouldn’t matter, correct? 4) I read where the shutter should be at least double of what the focal length is? (seems backwards from taking a photo, where if there’s action you want shutter high)
    I have no plans to edit this recording.
    Manual mode * ISO 800 * 24mm-70mm f/2.8 lens * f/4 – 4.5 * 1/60 * 24mm – 35mm focal length * auto tracking on * white balance either AWB or fluorescent
    Have any suggestions for the issues? Thanks for any and all suggestions.

  8. When shooting the video with external microphone(boya by-m1), I found “off” sign shown in the display. But when I was shooting without external microphone, there was no “off” sign and sound was recorded without any problem. I tried both “Auto” and “Manual” option of sound recording but it did not work. What to do now?

  9. i cant figure out how to get sound to work on my camera ! everytime i play back there is no sound. i have moved sound to manual ,auto, turned the dial up, not sure what to do!

  10. When recording videos it stops recording every 10 mins. I am trying to record a soccer game which are 35 minute halves. How can I change my Rebel T6 to allow me to record for 30 straight minutes at a time??

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