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Canon 300D vs SX510

The Canon EOS 300D (called Canon Rebel in some regions) and the Canon PowerShot SX510 HS are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in August 2003 and August 2013. The 300D is a DSLR, while the SX510 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (300D) and a 1/2.3-inch (SX510) sensor. The 300D has a resolution of 6.3 megapixels, whereas the SX510 provides 15.9 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Canon 300D versus Canon SX510
Canon 300D Canon SX510
Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
Canon EF mount lenses 24-720mm f/3.4-5.8
6.3 MP, APS-C Sensor 15.9 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
no Video 1080/24p Video
ISO 100-1,600 ISO 80-3,200
Optical viewfinder No viewfinder, LCD framing
1.8 LCD, 118k dots 3.0 LCD, 461k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
2.5 shutter flaps per second 3.8 shutter flaps per second
400 shots per battery charge250 shots per battery charge
142 x 99 x 72 mm, 649 g 104 x 70 x 80 mm, 349 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS 300D and the Canon PowerShot SX510 HS? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon 300D and the Canon SX510 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Canon 300D vs Canon SX510
Compare 300D versus SX510 top
Comparison 300D or SX510 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon SX510 is considerably smaller (48 percent) than the Canon 300D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 300D nor the SX510 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the SX510 has a lens built in, whereas the 300D 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 300D and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the 300D gets 400 shots out of its BP-511 battery, while the SX510 can take 250 images on a single charge of its NB-6LH power pack.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.

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Body Specifications
    Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Canon 300D 142 mm 99 mm 72 mm 649 g 400 n Aug 2003 899i
2.
 
Canon SX510 104 mm 70 mm 80 mm 349 g 250 n Aug 2013 249i
3.
 
Canon 77D 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 540 g 600 n Feb 2017 899 i
4.
 
Canon SX420 104 mm 69 mm 85 mm 325 g 195 n Jan 2016 299i
5.
 
Canon SX410 104 mm 69 mm 85 mm 325 g 185 n Feb 2015 279i
6.
 
Canon SX520 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 441 g 210 n Jul 2014 399i
7.
 
Canon SX400 104 mm 69 mm 80 mm 313 g 190 n Jul 2014 249i
8.
 
Canon G1 X Mark II 116 mm 74 mm 66 mm 553 g 240 n Feb 2014 799i
9.
 
Canon 700D 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 n Mar 2013 649i
10.
 
Canon SX500 104 mm 70 mm 80 mm 341 g 195 n Aug 2012 329i
11.
 
Canon 650D 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 n Jun 2012 849i
12.
 
Canon G1 X 117 mm 81 mm 65 mm 534 g 250 n Jan 2012 799i
13.
 
Canon 400D 127 mm 84 mm 65 mm 556 g 370 n Aug 2006 799i
14.
 
Canon 350D 127 mm 94 mm 64 mm 540 g 400 n Feb 2005 899i
15.
 
Canon 20D 144 mm 106 mm 72 mm 770 g 700 n Aug 2004 1,499i
16.
 
Canon 10D 150 mm 107 mm 75 mm 850 g 500 n Feb 2003 1,999i
17.
 
Nikon D70 140 mm 111 mm 78 mm 679 g 400 n Jan 2004 999i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The SX510 was launched at a lower price than the 300D, despite having a lens built in. 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.

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Sensor comparison

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors 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. 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 300D features an APS-C sensor and the Canon SX510 a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The sensor area in the SX510 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 300D has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the SX510 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Technology-wise, the SX510 uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 4) than the 300D (DIGIC), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon 300D and Canon SX510 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the SX510 offers a higher resolution of 15.9 megapixels, compared with 6.3 MP of the 300D. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.33μm versus 7.38μm for the 300D). However, it should be noted that the SX510 is much more recent (by 10 years) than the 300D, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the SX510 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Canon SX510 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the SX510 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 17.3 inches or 58.5 x 43.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.8 x 35.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.4 x 11.5 inches or 39 x 29.3 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon 300D are 15.4 x 10.2 inches or 39 x 26 cm for good quality, 12.3 x 8.2 inches or 31.2 x 20.8 cm for very good quality, and 10.2 x 6.8 inches or 26 x 17.3 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon EOS 300D has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon PowerShot SX510 HS are ISO 80 to ISO 3200 (no boost).

300D versus SX510 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 adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

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Sensor Characteristics
    Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
1.
 
Canon 300D APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.010.854455
2.
 
Canon SX510 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/24p........
3.
 
Canon 77D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.397178
4.
 
Canon SX420 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/25p........
5.
 
Canon SX410 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/30p........
6.
 
Canon SX520 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p........
7.
 
Canon SX400 1/2.3 15.9 4608 3456720/30p........
8.
 
Canon G1 X Mark II 1.5-inch 13.0 4160 31201080/30p21.510.858158
9.
 
Canon 700D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161
10.
 
Canon SX500 1/2.3 15.9 4608 3456720/30p........
11.
 
Canon 650D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262
12.
 
Canon G1 X 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 32641080/24p21.710.864460
13.
 
Canon 400D APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.066462
14.
 
Canon 350D APS-C 8.0 3456 2304none21.810.863760
15.
 
Canon 20D APS-C 8.2 3504 2336none21.911.072162
16.
 
Canon 10D APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.110.957157
17.
 
Nikon D70 APS-C 6.0 3008 2000none20.410.352950

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The SX510 indeed provides for movie recording, while the 300D does not. The highest resolution format that the SX510 can use is 1080/24p.

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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the 300D has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the SX510 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon 300D, the Canon SX510, and comparable cameras.

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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)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
1.
 
Canon 300Doptical n 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n
2.
 
Canon SX510none n 3.0 461 fixed n 1/1600s 3.8 Y Y
3.
 
Canon 77Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
4.
 
Canon SX420none n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 0.5 Y Y
5.
 
Canon SX410none n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 0.5 Y Y
6.
 
Canon SX520none n 3.0 461 fixed n 1/2000s 1.6 Y Y
7.
 
Canon SX400none n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/1600s 0.8 Y Y
8.
 
Canon G1 X Mark IIoptional n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 5.2 Y Y
9.
 
Canon 700Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
10.
 
Canon SX500none n 3.0 461 fixed n 1/1600s 0.8 Y Y
11.
 
Canon 650Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
12.
 
Canon G1 Xoptical n 3.0 922 Swivel n 1/4000s 1.9 Y Y
13.
 
Canon 400Doptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
14.
 
Canon 350Doptical n 1.8 115 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
15.
 
Canon 20Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n
16.
 
Canon 10Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
17.
 
Nikon D70optical n 1.8 130 fixed n 1/8000s 3.0 Y n

The 300D writes its imaging data to Compact Flash cards, while the SX510 uses SDXC cards.

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Connectivity comparison

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 300D and Canon PowerShot SX510 HS and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
    Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
1.
 
Canon 300DY-----1.1---
2.
 
Canon SX510-stereomono--mini2.0Y--
3.
 
Canon 77DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
4.
 
Canon SX420-monomono---2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon SX410-stereomono---2.0---
6.
 
Canon SX520-stereomono--mini2.0---
7.
 
Canon SX400-stereomono---2.0---
8.
 
Canon G1 X Mark IIYstereomono--mini2.0YY-
9.
 
Canon 700DYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
10.
 
Canon SX500-stereomono---2.0---
11.
 
Canon 650DYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
12.
 
Canon G1 XYstereomono--mini2.0---
13.
 
Canon 400DY-----2.0---
14.
 
Canon 350DY-----2.0---
15.
 
Canon 20DY-----1.1---
16.
 
Canon 10DY-----1.1---
17.
 
Nikon D70Y-----1.0---

It is notable that the 300D has a hotshoe, while the SX510 does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.

Both the 300D and the SX510 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 300D was replaced by the Canon 350D, while the SX510 was followed by the Canon SX520. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.

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Review summary

So how do things add up? Is the Canon 300D better than the Canon SX510 or vice versa? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS 300D:

  • 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: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
  • More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/1600s) to freeze action.
  • More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (400 versus 250) 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 available for much longer (launched in August 2003).


Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX510 HS:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (15.9 vs 6.3MP), which boosts linear resolution by 56%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 4 vs DIGIC).
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 1080/24p video.
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (461k vs 118k dots).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3.8 vs 2.5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the 300D requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (104x70mm vs 142x99mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens built in (unlike the 300D).
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (2.0 vs 1.1).
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
  • More modern: Reflects 10 years of technical progress since the 300D launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the SX510 is the clear winner of the contest (15 : 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. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

300D 11:15 SX510

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon 300D and the Canon SX510 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera and Best Superzoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the 300D and the SX510 in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

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Expert Camera Reviews
     Camera 
 Model 
 AP 
 score 
 CL 
 score 
 DPR 
 score 
 EPZ 
 score 
 PB 
 score 
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Canon 300D....+ +.... Aug 2003 899i
2.
 
Canon SX510..+ +..4.5/54/5 Aug 2013 249i
3.
 
Canon 77D4.5/5..82/1004.5/54/5 Feb 2017 899 i
4.
 
Canon SX420........3/5 Jan 2016 299i
5.
 
Canon SX410..o...... Feb 2015 279i
6.
 
Canon SX520..+..3.5/53.5/5 Jul 2014 399i
7.
 
Canon SX400..+...... Jul 2014 249i
8.
 
Canon G1 X Mark II3/5+77/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2014 799i
9.
 
Canon 700D....76/1004.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649i
10.
 
Canon SX500..+ +..4/54/5 Aug 2012 329i
11.
 
Canon 650D4/5+ +77/1004.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849i
12.
 
Canon G1 X5/5+76/1004/54.5/5 Jan 2012 799i
13.
 
Canon 400D..+ ++ +o4/5 Aug 2006 799i
14.
 
Canon 350D..80/100+ +o.. Feb 2005 899i
15.
 
Canon 20D....+ +.... Aug 2004 1,499i
16.
 
Canon 10D....+ +.... Feb 2003 1,999i
17.
 
Nikon D70....+ +.... Jan 2004 999i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated 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. 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. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Canon 300D:
Check Ebay offers
Canon SX510:
Check Ebay offers

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. 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 300D vs Canon SX510

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Canon 300D Canon SX510
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses 24-720mm f/3.4-5.8
    Launch Date August 2003 August 2013
    Launch Price USD 899 USD 249
    Sensor Specs Canon 300D Canon SX510
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.7 x 15.1 mm 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 342.77 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 27.3 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 6.3 Megapixels 15.9 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3072 x 2048 pixels 4608 x 3456 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 7.38 μm 1.33 μm
    Pixel Density 1.84 MP/cm2 56.73 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability no Video 1080/24p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 1,600 ISO 80 - 3,200 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC DIGIC 4
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 55 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 21.0 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 10.8 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 544 ..
    Screen Specs Canon 300D Canon SX510
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.55x
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 1.8inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 118k dots 461k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon 300D Canon SX510
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 2.5 shutter flaps/s 3.8 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium CF cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    Connectivity Specs Canon 300D Canon SX510
    External Flash Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 1.1 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Body Specs Canon 300D Canon SX510
    Battery Type BP-511 NB-6LH
    Battery Life (CIPA)400 shots per charge250 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 142 x 99 x 72 mm
    (5.6 x 3.9 x 2.8 in)
    104 x 70 x 80 mm
    (4.1 x 2.8 x 3.1 in)
    Camera Weight 649 g (22.9 oz) 349 g (12.3 oz)

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