I am considering buying a Canon T5i with the standard 18-55 STM lens. I want to use it to video my son's high school games as well as use it for a general use camera for photos. I am thinking that there is a 30 minute cutoff per a video which I wanted to confirm and I also wanted to know if the standard 18-55 STM lens is going to work for taking the videos? I currently use a Panasonic Lumix Fz100 to take the game videos and I typically only zoom in about 1.5 to 2 times. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
Todd - I wouldn't recommend using a T5i (or any DSLR based) camera to record long form sporting events. They just aren't made for that. Shooting stills - fine. Short video clips - alright. But long form events like sports, weddings, or corporate functions they just don't do well. Two reasons for this:
(1) The FAT32 file format of the camera
(2) The 29:59 limit (to avoid being taxed as a video camera when shipped to various parts of the world)
(3) Multiple lenses needed
So while you're camera can theoretically record for about 30 minutes, in reality it may be much lower as the file format on your SD card (formatted by the camera) is FAT32. And FAT32 has a file size limit of 4GB. That limit means you may only get about 12 minutes of continuous recording before you'll have to manually restart the recording process (12 minutes is an estimate based on 45Mbps data rate while recording video...the T5i may record lower at a lower data rate than this, but my Canon camera experience usually averages about this data rate for video).
I would recommend getting a camcorder of some sort for this, especially for the ability to have a wide and zoom lens all in the same package (something like a Canon VIXIA HF10 or Panasonic HC-V750 or similar). While 18mm on a T5i is plenty wide, 55mm is not a very close zoom if you need to get tighter on the action (deepening on your vantage point). You really don't want to be switching lenses while at a game, and many times you can't if you're in the middle of a shot.