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Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

The Canon EOS 1200D (called Canon T5 in some regions) and the Nikon Coolpix P900 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in February 2014 and March 2015. The 1200D is a DSLR, while the P900 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (1200D) and a 1/2.3-inch (P900) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 17.9 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 15.9 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their sensors, their features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Headline Specifications
Canon 1200D   Nikon P900
Canon 1200D Nikon P900
Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
Canon EF mount lenses 24-2000mm f/2.8-6.5
17.9 MP, APS-C Sensor 15.9 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 100-6400 (100-12800) ISO 100-6400 (100-12800)
Optical viewfinder Electronic viewfinder (921k dots)
3.0" LCD, 460k dots 3.0" LCD, 921k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 7 shutter flaps per second
500 shots per battery charge360 shots per battery charge
130 x 100 x 78 mm, 480 g 140 x 103 x 137 mm, 899 g

Body comparison: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

The physical size and weight of the Canon 1200D and the Nikon P900 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Compare Canon 1200D and Nikon P900
Compare 1200D versus P900 top
Compare 1200D or P900 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon P900 is notably larger (11 percent) than the Canon 1200D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 1200D nor the P900 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the P900 has a lens built in, whereas the 1200D is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the 1200D and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the 1200D gets 500 shots out of its LP-E10 battery, while the P900 can take 360 images on a single charge of its EN-EL23 power pack. The power pack in the P900 can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient when travelling.

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)
Camera
Model
Canon 1200D» 5.1 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 16.9 oz 500 n Feb 2014 449- i Canon 1200D
Nikon P900« 5.5 in 4.1 in 5.4 in 31.7 oz 360 n Mar 2015 599- i Nikon P900
Canon 4000D« » 5.1 in 4.0 in 3.0 in 15.4 oz 500 n Feb 2018 399 i i Canon 4000D
Canon 1300D« » 5.1 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 17.1 oz 500 n Mar 2016 449- i Canon 1300D
Canon 750D« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 19.6 oz 440 n Feb 2015 749- i Canon 750D
Canon 760D« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 19.9 oz 440 n Feb 2015 849- i Canon 760D
Canon G9 X« » 3.9 in 2.3 in 1.2 in 7.4 oz 220 n Oct 2015 529- i Canon G9 X
Canon M10« » 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.4 in 10.6 oz 255 n Oct 2015 499- i Canon M10
Canon SX60« » 5.0 in 3.7 in 4.5 in 22.9 oz 340 n Sep 2014 549- i Canon SX60
Canon 100D« » 4.6 in 3.6 in 2.7 in 14.4 oz 380 n Mar 2013 549- i Canon 100D
Canon 700D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.5 oz 440 n Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
Canon 650D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.3 oz 440 n Jun 2012 849- i Canon 650D
Canon 1100D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 17.5 oz 700 n Feb 2011 449- i Canon 1100D
Nikon P1000« » 5.7 in 4.7 in 7.1 in 49.9 oz 250 n Jul 2018 999 i i Nikon P1000
Panasonic FZ100« » 4.9 in 3.2 in 3.6 in 19.0 oz 410 n Jul 2010 499- i Panasonic FZ100
Ricoh GR II« » 4.6 in 2.5 in 1.4 in 8.9 oz 320 n Jun 2015 699 i i Ricoh GR II
Sony HX400V« » 5.1 in 3.7 in 4.1 in 23.3 oz 300 n Feb 2014 499 i i Sony HX400V

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. 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 1200D vs Nikon P900

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants 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. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon 1200D features an APS-C sensor and the Nikon P900 a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The sensor area in the P900 is 92 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 5.6. The sensor in the 1200D has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the P900 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with BSI-CMOS (Backside Illuminated Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.

Canon 1200D and Nikon P900 sensor measures

With 17.9MP, the 1200D offers a higher resolution than the P900 (15.9MP), but the 1200D nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.31μm versus 1.33μm for the P900) due to its larger sensor. However, the P900 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year) than the 1200D, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the P900 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The Canon EOS 1200D has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800.. The Nikon Coolpix P900 offers exactly the same ISO settings.

1200D versus P900 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. 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. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
Canon 1200D» APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463Canon 1200D
Nikon P900« 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60p----Nikon P900
Canon 4000D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.469563Canon 4000D
Canon 1300D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p----Canon 1300D
Canon 750D« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p22.712.091971Canon 750D
Canon 760D« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.612.091570Canon 760D
Canon G9 X« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.512.349563Canon G9 X
Canon M10« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.211.475365Canon M10
Canon SX60« » 1/2.3 14.2 4608 30721080/60p19.210.812739Canon SX60
Canon 100D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.384363Canon 100D
Canon 700D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161Canon 700D
Canon 650D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262Canon 650D
Canon 1100D« » APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.075562Canon 1100D
Nikon P1000« » 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/30p----Nikon P1000
Panasonic FZ100« » 1/2.3 14.0 4320 32401080/60i----Panasonic FZ100
Ricoh GR II« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.613.7107880Ricoh GR II
Sony HX400V« » 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p----Sony HX400V

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the P900 provides a faster frame rate than the 1200D. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/30p.

 

Feature comparison: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the P900 has an electronic viewfinder (921k dots), while the 1200D 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 table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon 1200D and Nikon P900 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
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)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Canon 1200D»optical n 3.0 460 fixed n 4000 3.0 Y n Canon 1200D
Nikon P900«921 n 3.0 921 swivel n 4000 7.0 Y Y Nikon P900
Canon 4000D« »optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 4000 3.0 Y n Canon 4000D
Canon 1300D« »optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 4000 3.0 Y n Canon 1300D
Canon 750D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon 750D
Canon 760D« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon 760D
Canon G9 X« »- n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 2000 6.0 Y Y Canon G9 X
Canon M10« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 4.6 Y n Canon M10
Canon SX60« »922 n 3.0 922 swivel n 2000 6.4 Y Y Canon SX60
Canon 100D« »optical n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 4000 4.9 Y n Canon 100D
Canon 700D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon 700D
Canon 650D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon 650D
Canon 1100D« »optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 4000 3.0 Y n Canon 1100D
Nikon P1000« »2359 n 3.2 921 swivel n 4000 7.0 Y Y Nikon P1000
Panasonic FZ100« »202 n 3.0 460 swivel n 2000 11.0 Y Y Panasonic FZ100
Ricoh GR II« »- n 3.0 1230 fixed n 4000 4.0 Y n Ricoh GR II
Sony HX400V« »210 n 3.0 921 tilting n 4000 10.0 Y Y Sony HX400V
The P900 has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies. In contrast, the 1200D does not have a selfie-screen.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the 1200D and the P900 write their files to SDXC cards.

 

Connectivity comparison: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Canon EOS 1200D and Nikon Coolpix P900 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
Canon 1200D»Ymonomono--mini2.0---Canon 1200D
Nikon P900«-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Nikon P900
Canon 4000D« »Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-Canon 4000D
Canon 1300D« »Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-Canon 1300D
Canon 750D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon 750D
Canon 760D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon 760D
Canon G9 X« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Canon G9 X
Canon M10« »-stereomono--mini2.0YY-Canon M10
Canon SX60« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon SX60
Canon 100D« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 100D
Canon 700D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 700D
Canon 650D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 650D
Canon 1100D« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Canon 1100D
Nikon P1000« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0Y-YNikon P1000
Panasonic FZ100« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Panasonic FZ100
Ricoh GR II« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Ricoh GR II
Sony HX400V« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony HX400V

It is notable that the 1200D has a hotshoe, while the P900 does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.

Both the 1200D and the P900 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 1200D was replaced by the Canon 1300D, while the P900 was followed by the Nikon P1000.


Review summary: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Canon 1200D or the Nikon P900 – has the upper hand? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Advantages of the Canon EOS 1200D:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (17.9 vs 15.9MP) with a 8% higher linear resolution.
  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
  • Richer colors: Larger pixels generate images with better, more accurate colors.
  • More dynamic range: Capable of capturing a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can be used in poorly lit environments and still produce good images.
  • Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
  • More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (500 versus 360) on a single battery charge.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2014).

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Reasons to prefer the Nikon Coolpix P900:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/30p).
  • More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (921k vs 460k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the 1200D requires a separate lens.
  • Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (1 year) more recently.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the P900 comes out slightly ahead of the 1200D (12 : 11 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera.

1200D 11:12 P900

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 1200D or the P900. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

Expert reviews: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

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). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Canon 1200D»Rec-4/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449- i Canon 1200D
Nikon P900«-77/1004/54.5/54/5 Mar 2015 599- i Nikon P900
Canon 4000D« »rev-3.5/5-3.5/5 Feb 2018 399 i i Canon 4000D
Canon 1300D« »rev73/1004/53.5/54/5 Mar 2016 449- i Canon 1300D
Canon 750D« »-75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749- i Canon 750D
Canon 760D« »Rec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 849- i Canon 760D
Canon G9 X« »HiRec-4.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 529- i Canon G9 X
Canon M10« »---rev4/5 Oct 2015 499- i Canon M10
Canon SX60« »HiRec75/1004/5-4.5/5 Sep 2014 549- i Canon SX60
Canon 100D« »Rec78/1004/54/54/5 Mar 2013 549- i Canon 100D
Canon 700D« »-76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
Canon 650D« »HiRec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849- i Canon 650D
Canon 1100D« »80/10069/1004/54/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449- i Canon 1100D
Nikon P1000« »Rec73/1003.5/5-3.5/5 Jul 2018 999 i i Nikon P1000
Panasonic FZ100« »Rec-4.5/5-4.5/5 Jul 2010 499- i Panasonic FZ100
Ricoh GR II« »--4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 699 i i Ricoh GR II
Sony HX400V« »HiRec-4/5-4/5 Feb 2014 499 i i Sony HX400V

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Canon 1200D:
Check Ebay offers
Nikon P900:
Check Ebay offers

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.

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    Specifications: Canon 1200D vs Nikon P900

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Canon 1200D Nikon P900
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses 24-2000mm f/2.8-6.5
    Launch Date February 2014 March 2015
    Launch Price USD 449 USD 599
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology BSI-CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 6.17 x 14.9 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 17.9 Megapixels 15.9 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5184 x 3456 pixels 4608 x 3456 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.31 μm 1.33 μm
    Pixel Density 5.39 MP/cm2 56.73 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100-6400 ISO 100-6400 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-12800 ISO 100-12800 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 4 EXPEED C2
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 63 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 21.9 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.3 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 724 ..
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.50x ..x
    Viewfinder Resolution n/a 921k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 460k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Swivel screen
    Shooting Specs
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/4000s 1/4000s
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 7 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication no NFC NFC built-in
    Body Specs
    Battery Type LP-E10 power pack EN-EL23 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)500 shots per charge360 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging no USB charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 130 x 100 x 78 mm
    (5.1 x 3.9 x 3.1 in)
    140 x 103 x 137 mm
    (5.5 x 4.1 x 5.4 in)
    Camera Weight 480 g (16.9 oz) 899 g (31.7 oz)

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