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Canon 300D versus Sony RX100

The Canon EOS 300D (called Canon Rebel in some regions) and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in August 2003 and June 2012. The 300D is a DSLR, while the RX100 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (300D) and an one-inch (RX100) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 6.3 megapixel, whereas the Sony provides 20 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 300D vs Sony RX100

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon 300D and the Sony RX100 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 measures 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 – the 300D – represents the basis or 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Canon 300D vs Sony RX100
300D versus RX100 top view
300D and RX100 rear side
Body view (300D on the left)

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony RX100 is considerably smaller (58 percent) than the Canon 300D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 300D nor the RX100 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the RX100 has a lens build 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 find an overview of optics 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 RX100 can take 330 images on a single charge of its NP-BX1 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 Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(y/n)
Camera
Launch
(year)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(amazon)
Used
Price
(ebay)
Canon 300D (⇒ rgt) 142 mm 99 mm 72 mm 649 g 400 no 2003 899discont. check
Sony RX100 (⇒ lft) 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 240 g 330 no 2012 649discont. check
Canon 77D (⇒ lft | rgt) 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 540 g 600 no 2017 899 latest check
Canon G1 X Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt) 116 mm 74 mm 66 mm 553 g 240 no 2014 799 latest check
Canon 700D (⇒ lft | rgt) 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 no 2013 649discont. check
Canon G1 X (⇒ lft | rgt) 117 mm 81 mm 65 mm 534 g 250 no 2012 799discont. check
Canon 650D (⇒ lft | rgt) 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 no 2012 849discont. check
Canon 400D (⇒ lft | rgt) 127 mm 84 mm 65 mm 556 g 370 no 2006 799discont. check
Canon 350D (⇒ lft | rgt) 127 mm 94 mm 64 mm 540 g 400 no 2005 899discont. check
Canon 20D (⇒ lft | rgt) 144 mm 106 mm 72 mm 770 g 700 no 2004 1,499discont. check
Canon 10D (⇒ lft | rgt) 150 mm 107 mm 75 mm 850 g 500 no 2003 1,999discont. check
Nikon D70 (⇒ lft | rgt) 140 mm 111 mm 78 mm 679 g 400 no 2004 999discont. check
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) 110 mm 63 mm 36 mm 283 g 400 no 2014 549 latest check
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) 102 mm 58 mm 38 mm 281 g 350 no 2013 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) 111 mm 59 mm 39 mm 276 g 330 no 2012 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) 111 mm 59 mm 38 mm 269 g 460 no 2011 699discont. check
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) 110 mm 60 mm 33 mm 225 g 400 no 2011 599discont. check

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 RX100 was launched at a lower price than the 300D, despite having a lens build 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.


Sensor comparison: Canon 300D vs Sony RX100

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon 300D features an APS-C sensor and the Sony RX100 an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the RX100 is 66 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 2.7. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Canon 300D and Sony RX100 sensor measures
Sensor size

Despite having a smaller sensor, the RX100 offers a higher resolution of 20 megapixel, compared with 6.3 MP of the 300D. This megapixel advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 7.38μm for the 300D). However, it should be noted that the RX100 is much more recent (by 8 years and 9 months) than the 300D, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.

300D versus RX100 MP
Sensor resolution

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). Of the two cameras under consideration, the RX100 offers substantially better image quality than the 300D (overall score 11 points higher). The advantage is based on 1.6 bits higher color depth, 1.6 EV in additional dynamic range, 0.5 stops of reduced 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
(Megapixel)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Canon 300D (⇒ rgt) APS-C 6.3 3072 2048 no 21.0 10.8 544 55
Sony RX100 (⇒ lft) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 22.6 12.4 390 66
Canon 77D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 24.0 6000 4000 1080/60p .. .. .. ..
Canon G1 X Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt) 1.5-inch 13.0 4160 3120 1080/30p 21.5 10.8 581 58
Canon 700D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 17.9 5184 3456 1080/30p 21.7 11.2 681 61
Canon G1 X (⇒ lft | rgt) 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 3264 1080/24p 21.7 10.8 644 60
Canon 650D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 17.9 5184 3456 1080/30p 21.7 11.2 722 62
Canon 400D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 10.1 3888 2592 no 22.1 11.0 664 62
Canon 350D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 8.0 3456 2304 no 21.8 10.8 637 60
Canon 20D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 8.2 3504 2336 no 21.9 11.0 721 62
Canon 10D (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 6.3 3072 2048 no 21.1 10.9 571 57
Nikon D70 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 6.0 3008 2000 no 20.4 10.3 529 50
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 24.0 6000 4000 1080/60p 23.8 12.7 1347 80
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) 1-inch 20.0 5472 3648 1080/60p 22.5 12.4 483 67
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 1080/60i 23.7 13.1 910 78
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 1080/60i 23.6 12.7 1079 77
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) APS-C 16.0 4912 3264 720/30p 22.7 12.2 1083 73

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The RX100 indeed provides for movie recording, while the 300D does not. The highest resolution format that the RX100 can use is 1080/60p.

Feature comparison: Canon 300D vs Sony RX100

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 RX100 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 Sony RX100, and comparable cameras. If you need more detail on the specs, you can find comprehensive listings, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

Core Features
Camera Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(Y/n)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(Y/n)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(GN)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Canon 300D (⇒ rgt) optical no 1.8 118 fixed no 4000 2.5 YES no
Sony RX100 (⇒ lft) no no 3.0 1229 fixed no 2000 10.0 YES YES
Canon 77D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical YES 3.0 1040 swivel YES 4000 6.0 12 no
Canon G1 X Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 1040 tilting YES 4000 5.2 6.8 YES
Canon 700D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 1040 swivel YES 4000 5.0 13 no
Canon G1 X (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 922 Swivel no 4000 1.9 7 YES
Canon 650D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 3.0 1040 swivel YES 4000 5.0 YES no
Canon 400D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 2.5 230 fixed no 4000 3.0 YES no
Canon 350D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 1.8 115 fixed no 4000 3.0 YES no
Canon 20D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical YES 1.8 118 fixed no 8000 5.0 13 no
Canon 10D (⇒ lft | rgt) optical YES 1.8 118 fixed no 4000 3.0 13 no
Nikon D70 (⇒ lft | rgt) optical no 1.8 130 fixed no 8000 3.0 11 no
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 922 tilting YES 4000 6.0 4 no
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 1229 tilting no 2000 10.0 15 YES
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting YES 4000 10.0 no no
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting YES 4000 10.0 no no
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) no no 3.0 920 tilting no 4000 5.5 no no

Both the 300D and the RX100 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 300D was replaced by the Canon 350D, while the RX100 was followed by the Sony RX100 II.

Review summary: Canon 300D vs Sony RX100

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon 300D and the Sony RX100? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


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Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS 300D:

  • Better low-light sensitivity: Requires less light for good images (0.5 stops ISO advantage).
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
  • More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (400 versus 330) on a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in August 2003).

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Arguments in favor of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (20 vs 6.3MP), which boosts linear resolution by 78%.
  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (11 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
  • Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (1.6 bits more color depth).
  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1.6 EV of extra DR).
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 1080/60p 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 (1229k vs 118k dots).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 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 (102x58mm vs 142x99mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens build in (unlike the 300D).
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology build-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a build-in lens.
  • More modern: Reflects 8 years and 9 months of technical progress since the 300D launch.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the RX100 is the clear winner of the contest (14 : 6 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.

300D 06:14 RX100

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the 300D or the RX100. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased. This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites. You can find the full text of the reviews, respectively, at cameralabs.com, dpreview.com, ephotozine.com, imaging-resource.com, and photographyblog.com.

Review scores
Camera camera
labs
.com
dp
review
.com
ephoto
zine
.com
imaging
resource
.com
photography
blog
.com
Camera
Launch
(year)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(amazon)
Used
Price
(ebay)
Canon 300D (⇒ rgt) - HiRec - reviewed - 2003 899discont. check
Sony RX100 (⇒ lft) HiRec 78/100 Silver 4/5 5/5 5/5 2012 649discont. check
Canon 77D (⇒ lft | rgt) .. 82/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4/5 2017 899 latest check
Canon G1 X Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec 77/100 Silver 4/5 4/5 4.5/5 2014 799 latest check
Canon 700D (⇒ lft | rgt) - 76/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4.5/5 2013 649discont. check
Canon G1 X (⇒ lft | rgt) 79/100 Rec 76/100 Silver 4/5 4/5 4.5/5 2012 799discont. check
Canon 650D (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 77/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4.5/5 2012 849discont. check
Canon 400D (⇒ lft | rgt) 85/100 HiRec HiRec reviewed 4.5/5 4/5 2006 799discont. check
Canon 350D (⇒ lft | rgt) 80/100 HiRec reviewed reviewed - 2005 899discont. check
Canon 20D (⇒ lft | rgt) - HiRec - reviewed - 2004 1,499discont. check
Canon 10D (⇒ lft | rgt) - HiRec - reviewed - 2003 1,999discont. check
Nikon D70 (⇒ lft | rgt) - HiRec - reviewed - 2004 999discont. check
Sony A5100 (⇒ lft | rgt) Rec - 4.5/5 4.5/5 5/5 2014 549 latest check
Sony RX100 II (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 79/100 Silver 4.5/5 5/5 4.5/5 2013 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5R (⇒ lft | rgt) - - 4.5/5 - 4.5/5 2012 749discont. check
Sony NEX-5N (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 79/100 Gold 4.5/5 5/5 4.5/5 2011 699discont. check
Sony NEX-C3 (⇒ lft | rgt) HiRec 74/100 Silver 4.5/5 4.5/5 4/5 2011 599discont. check

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, 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 comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods 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? 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. If the camera you are interested in is not available, please contact me, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.

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