Canon 100D versus Sony A5000
The Canon EOS 100D (called Canon SL1 in some regions) and the Sony Alpha A5000 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in March 2013 and January 2014. The 100D is a DSLR, while the A5000 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. Both cameras are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 17.9 megapixel, whereas the Sony provides 19.8 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.
Body comparison: Canon 100D vs Sony A5000
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon 100D and the Sony A5000 is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the 100D – represents the basis or 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony A5000 is considerably smaller (35 percent) than the Canon 100D. Moreover, the A5000 is markedly lighter (34 percent) than the 100D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 100D nor the A5000 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. Both cameras have similarly sized sensors, but DSLRs have a larger flange-to-focal plane distance than mirrorless cameras, which imposes contraints on the optical engineering process and generally leads to bigger and heavier lenses. You can find an overview of optics for the two cameras in the Canon EF Lens Catalog (100D) and the Sony E-Mount Lens Catalog (A5000). Mirrorless cameras, such as the A5000, have moreover the advantage that they can use many lenses from other systems via adapters, as they have a relatively short flange to focal plane distance.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|Camera Body Specifications|
|Canon 100D»||4.6 in||3.6 in||2.7 in||14.4 oz||380||n||Mar 2013||549||-|
|Sony A5000«||4.3 in||2.5 in||1.4 in||9.5 oz||420||n||Jan 2014||449||-|
|Canon 4000D« »||5.1 in||4.0 in||3.0 in||15.4 oz||500||n||Feb 2018||399|
|Canon 200D« »||4.8 in||3.7 in||2.8 in||16.0 oz||650||n||Jun 2017||549|
|Canon M10« »||4.3 in||2.6 in||1.4 in||10.6 oz||255||n||Oct 2015||499||-|
|Canon 1200D« »||5.1 in||3.9 in||3.1 in||16.9 oz||500||n||Feb 2014||449||-|
|Canon 700D« »||5.2 in||3.9 in||3.1 in||20.5 oz||440||n||Mar 2013||649||-|
|Canon G16« »||4.3 in||3.0 in||1.6 in||12.6 oz||360||n||Aug 2013||549|
|Canon M« »||4.3 in||2.6 in||1.3 in||10.5 oz||230||n||Jul 2012||599||-|
|Canon 650D« »||5.2 in||3.9 in||3.1 in||20.3 oz||440||n||Jun 2012||849||-|
|Canon 600D« »||5.2 in||3.9 in||3.1 in||20.1 oz||440||n||Feb 2011||599||-|
|Canon 500D« »||5.1 in||3.9 in||2.4 in||18.3 oz||400||n||Mar 2009||799||-|
|Panasonic G6« »||4.8 in||3.3 in||2.8 in||13.8 oz||340||n||Apr 2013||599||-|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||4.0 in||2.3 in||1.6 in||10.5 oz||280||n||Jun 2015||999||-|
|Sony A6000« »||4.7 in||2.6 in||1.8 in||12.1 oz||360||n||Feb 2014||599||-|
|Sony A5100« »||4.3 in||2.5 in||1.4 in||10.0 oz||400||n||Aug 2014||549|
|Sony NEX-3N« »||4.3 in||2.4 in||1.4 in||9.5 oz||480||n||Feb 2013||499||-|
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The A5000 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 18 percent) than the 100D, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
Sensor comparison: Canon 100D vs Sony A5000
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the A5000 is 8 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have format factors, respectively, of 1.6 (100D) and 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
With 19.8MP, the A5000 offers a higher resolution than the 100D (17.9MP), but the A5000 has marginally smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.25μm versus 4.31μm for the 100D). Yet, the A5000 is a somewhat more recent model (by 9 months) than the 100D, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). Of the two cameras under consideration, the A5000 offers substantially better image quality than the 100D (overall score 16 points higher). The advantage is based on 2 bits higher color depth, 1.7 EV in additional dynamic range, and 0.4 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Canon 4000D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||21.9||11.4||695||63|
|Canon 200D« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||23.6||13.4||1041||79|
|Canon M10« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.2||11.4||753||65|
|Canon 1200D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||21.9||11.3||724||63|
|Canon 700D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||21.7||11.2||681||61|
|Canon G16« »||1/1.7||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||21.0||11.7||230||54|
|Canon M« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.1||11.2||827||65|
|Canon 650D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||21.7||11.2||722||62|
|Canon 600D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.1||11.5||793||65|
|Canon 500D« »||APS-C||15.1||4752||3168||1080/20p||21.7||11.5||663||63|
|Panasonic G6« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||21.3||11.5||639||61|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.6||591||70|
|Sony A6000« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||24.1||13.1||1347||82|
|Sony A5100« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||23.8||12.7||1347||80|
|Sony NEX-3N« »||APS-C||16.0||4912||3264||1080/60i||22.8||12.5||1067||74|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the A5000 provides a faster frame rate than the 100D. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60i, while the Canon is limited to 1080/30p.
Feature comparison: Canon 100D vs Sony A5000
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the 100D has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the A5000 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Canon 100D and Sony A5000 along with similar information for a selection of comparators. If you need more detail on the specs, you can find comprehensive listings, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.
|Canon 4000D« »||optical||n||2.7||230||fixed||n||4000||3.0||Y||n|
|Canon 200D« »||optical||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||5.0||Y||n|
|Canon M10« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||4.6||Y||n|
|Canon 1200D« »||optical||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||4000||3.0||Y||n|
|Canon 700D« »||optical||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||5.0||Y||n|
|Canon G16« »||optical||n||3.0||922||fixed||n||4000||2.2||Y||Y|
|Canon M« »||-||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||4000||4.3||n||n|
|Canon 650D« »||optical||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||5.0||Y||n|
|Canon 600D« »||optical||n||3.0||1040||swivel||n||4000||3.7||Y||n|
|Canon 500D« »||optical||n||3.0||920||fixed||n||4000||3.4||Y||n|
|Panasonic G6« »||1440||n||3.0||1036||swivel||Y||4000||7.0||Y||n|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||2359||n||3.0||1228||tilting||n||2000||16.0||Y||Y|
|Sony A6000« »||1440||n||3.0||922||tilting||n||4000||11.0||Y||n|
|Sony A5100« »||-||n||3.0||922||tilting||Y||4000||6.0||Y||n|
|Sony NEX-3N« »||-||n||3.0||460||tilting||n||4000||4.0||Y||n|
Both the 100D and the A5000 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 100D was replaced by the Canon 200D, while the A5000 was followed by the Sony A5100.
Review summary: Canon 100D vs Sony A5000
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Canon 100D or the Sony A5000 – has the upper hand? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Advantages of the Canon EOS 100D:
- Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 461k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (4.9 vs 3.5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in March 2013).
Arguments in favor of the Sony Alpha A5000:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (19.8 vs 17.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 5%.
- Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (16 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
- Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (2 bits more color depth).
- More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1.7 EV of extra DR).
- Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (0.4 stops ISO advantage).
- Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60i versus 1080/30p).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- More compact: Is smaller (110x63mm vs 117x91mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 138g or 34 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (420 versus 380) out of a single battery charge.
- More legacy lens friendly: Can use many non-native lenses via adapters.
- More affordable: Was released into a lower priced segment (18 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (9 months) more recently.
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the A5000 is the clear winner of the contest (13 : 5 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision.
In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the 100D or the A5000. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate. This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The full reviews are available by clicking on the site logo in the table header.
|Canon 100D»||Rec||78/100||4/5||4/5||4/5||Mar 2013||549||-|
|Sony A5000«||Rec||-||4.5/5||rev||4.5/5||Jan 2014||449||-|
|Canon 4000D« »||rev||-||-||-||3.5/5||Feb 2018||399|
|Canon 200D« »||HiRec||78/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2017||549|
|Canon M10« »||-||-||-||rev||4/5||Oct 2015||499||-|
|Canon 1200D« »||Rec||-||4/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||449||-|
|Canon 700D« »||-||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2013||649||-|
|Canon G16« »||Rec||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||549|
|Canon M« »||Rec||-||4/5||3.5/5||4/5||Jul 2012||599||-|
|Canon 650D« »||HiRec||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2012||849||-|
|Canon 600D« »||rev||77/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2011||599||-|
|Canon 500D« »||HiRec||74/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2009||799||-|
|Panasonic G6« »||HiRec||-||5/5||-||4.5/5||Apr 2013||599||-|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||HiRec||85/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||999||-|
|Sony A6000« »||Rec||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Feb 2014||599||-|
|Sony A5100« »||Rec||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Aug 2014||549|
|Sony NEX-3N« »||-||-||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2013||499||-|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when refering to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please send me an email, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.
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- Canon 7D vs Canon M100
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Pentax K-1
- Fujifilm X-T20 vs Sony RX10 II
- Nikon Df vs Canon 80D
- Olympus E-M1 II vs Nikon P900
- Panasonic FZ300 vs Sony RX10 III
- Pentax K-1 II vs Canon 1200D
- Sony A5000 vs Panasonic GX80
- Sony RX100 VI vs Canon SX730