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Canon 100D versus Sony A99 II

The Canon EOS 100D (called Canon SL1 in some regions) and the Sony Alpha ALT-A99 II are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in March 2013 and September 2016. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are based on an APS-C (100D) and a full frame (A99 II) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 17.9 megapixel, whereas the Sony provides 42.2 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 A99 II

The physical size and weight of the Canon 100D and the Sony A99 II are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. You can also use the toggle button to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the 100D – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Snapsort Canon 100D vs Sony A99 II
Compare 100D versus A99 II top
Compare 100D and A99 II rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony A99 II is notably larger (40 percent) than the Canon 100D. Moreover, the A99 II is substantially heavier (109 percent) than the 100D. It is noteworthy in this context that the A99 II is splash and dust-proof, while the 100D does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.

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. Hence, you might want to study the specifications of available lenses in order to get the full picture of the size and weight of the two camera systems.

Concerning battery life, the 100D gets 380 shots out of its LP-E12 battery, while the A99 II can take 490 images on a single charge of its NP-FM500H power pack.

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
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Canon 100D» 4.6 in 3.6 in 2.7 in 14.4 oz 380 n Mar 2013 549- i
Sony A99 II« 5.6 in 4.1 in 3.0 in 29.9 oz 490 Y Sep 2016 3,199 i i
Canon 4000D« » 5.1 in 4.0 in 3.0 in 15.4 oz 500 n Feb 2018 399 i i
Canon 200D« » 4.8 in 3.7 in 2.8 in 16.0 oz 650 n Jun 2017 549 i i
Canon 1200D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 16.9 oz 500 n Feb 2014 449- i
Canon 700D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.5 oz 440 n Mar 2013 649- i
Canon G16« » 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 n Aug 2013 549 i i
Canon M« » 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.3 in 10.5 oz 230 n Jul 2012 599- i
Canon 650D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.3 oz 440 n Jun 2012 849- i
Canon 600D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.1 oz 440 n Feb 2011 599- i
Canon 500D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.3 oz 400 n Mar 2009 799- i
Panasonic G6« » 4.8 in 3.3 in 2.8 in 13.8 oz 340 n Apr 2013 599- i
Pentax K-1« » 5.4 in 4.3 in 3.4 in 35.6 oz 760 Y Feb 2016 1,799- i
Sony A7R III« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 22.9 oz 650 Y Oct 2017 3,199 i i
Sony A7R II« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.4 in 22.0 oz 290 Y Jun 2015 3,199- i
Sony A7S II« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.4 in 22.1 oz 370 Y Sep 2015 2,999 i i
Sony A99« » 5.8 in 4.4 in 3.1 in 28.6 oz 500 Y Sep 2012 2,799- i

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 100D was launched at a markedly lower price (by 83 percent) than the A99 II, which puts it into a different market segment. 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 A99 II

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color depth than smaller pixels 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 more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon 100D features an APS-C sensor and the Sony A99 II a full frame sensor. The sensor area in the A99 II is 160 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 1.0. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Canon 100D and Sony A99 II sensor measures

With 42.2MP, the A99 II offers a higher resolution than the 100D (17.9MP), but the A99 II nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.52μm versus 4.31μm for the 100D) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the A99 II is a much more recent model (by 3 years and 6 months) than the 100D, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the A99 II has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

100D versus A99 II MP

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. Of the two cameras under consideration, the A99 II offers substantially better image quality than the 100D (overall score 29 points higher). The advantage is based on 3.6 bits higher color depth, 2.1 EV in additional dynamic range, and 1.5 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.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Canon 100D» APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.384363
Sony A99 II« Full Frame 42.2 7952 53044K/30p25.413.4231792
Canon 4000D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.469563
Canon 200D« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179
Canon 1200D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463
Canon 700D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161
Canon G16« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.723054
Canon M« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.282765
Canon 650D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262
Canon 600D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.579365
Canon 500D« » APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.566363
Panasonic G6« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p21.311.563961
Pentax K-1« » Full Frame 36.2 7360 49121080/60i25.414.6328096
Sony A7R III« » Full Frame 42.2 7952 53044K/30p26.014.73523100
Sony A7R II« » Full Frame 42.2 7952 53044K/30p26.013.9343498
Sony A7S II« » Full Frame 12.0 4240 28324K/30p23.613.3299385
Sony A99« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p25.014.0155589

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the A99 II provides a better video resolution than the 100D. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/30p.

 

Feature comparison: Canon 100D vs Sony A99 II

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the A99 II has an electronic viewfinder (2400k dots), while the 100D has an optical one. Both systems have their advantages, with the electronic viewfinder making it possible to project supplementary shooting information into the framing view, whereas the optical viewfinder offers lag-free viewing and a very clear framing image. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon 100D, the Sony A99 II, and comparable cameras. The full specs-sheets can be found in the camera manual or, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

Core Features
  Camera Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Canon 100D»optical n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 4000 4.9 Y n
Sony A99 II«2400 Y 3.0 1229 full-flex n 8000 12.0 n Y
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 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
Pentax K-1« »optical Y 3.2 1037 full-flex n 8000 4.4 n Y
Sony A7R III« »3686 n 3.0 1440 tilting Y 8000 10.0 n Y
Sony A7R II« »2400 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 8000 5.0 n Y
Sony A7S II« »2400 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 8000 5.0 n Y
Sony A99« »2359 Y 3.0 1229 full-flex n 8000 6.0 n Y

The A99 II is a current model that online retailers, such as amazon, will have in stock. In contrast, the 100D has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the 100D was succeeded by the Canon 200D.

Review summary: Canon 100D vs Sony A99 II

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon 100D and the Sony A99 II? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS 100D:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • More compact: Is smaller (117x91mm vs 143x104mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 442g or 52 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Easier fill-in: Is equipped with a small onboard flash to brighten deep shadow areas.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (83 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in March 2013).

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Arguments in favor of the Sony Alpha ALT-A99 II:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (42.2 vs 17.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 53%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (29 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
  • Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (3.6 bits more color depth).
  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (2.1 EV of extra DR).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (1.5 stops ISO advantage).
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/30p).
  • More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
  • Easier setting verification: Has a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1229k vs 1040k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has full-flex screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (8000/sec vs 4000/sec) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (12 vs 4.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (490 versus 380) out of a single battery charge.
  • Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology build-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • More modern: Reflects 3 years and 6 months of technical progress since the 100D launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the A99 II is the clear winner of the contest (17 : 8 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera.

100D 08:17 A99 II

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the 100D and the A99 II in practical situations. 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 where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review scores
  Camera cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Canon 100D»Rec78/1004/54/54/5 Mar 2013 549- i
Sony A99 II«-85/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2016 3,199 i i
Canon 4000D« »rev---3.5/5 Feb 2018 399 i i
Canon 200D« »HiRec78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549 i i
Canon 1200D« »Rec-4/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449- i
Canon 700D« »-76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649- i
Canon G16« »Rec-4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i i
Canon M« »Rec-4/53.5/54/5 Jul 2012 599- i
Canon 650D« »HiRec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849- i
Canon 600D« »rev77/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2011 599- i
Canon 500D« »HiRec74/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799- i
Panasonic G6« »HiRec-5/5-4.5/5 Apr 2013 599- i
Pentax K-1« »-84/1005/54.5/55/5 Feb 2016 1,799- i
Sony A7R III« »HiRec90/1004.5/55/55/5 Oct 2017 3,199 i i
Sony A7R II« »HiRec90/1005/54.5/55/5 Jun 2015 3,199- i
Sony A7S II« »Rec-4.5/55/55/5 Sep 2015 2,999 i i
Sony A99« »-84/1004.5/5rev4.5/5 Sep 2012 2,799- i

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when refering to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time 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. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

 

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored. If you do not see the camera that you are looking for, kindly get in touch, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.

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