Canon 400D vs 40D
The Canon EOS 400D (called Canon XTi in some regions) and the Canon EOS 40D are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in August 2006 and August 2007. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 10.1 megapixels.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Canon EF mount lenses||Canon EF mount lenses|
|10.1 MP, APS-C Sensor||10.1 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|no Video||no Video|
|ISO 100-1,600||ISO 100-1,600 (100 - 3,200)|
|Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|2.5 LCD, 230k dots||3.0 LCD, 230k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|3 shutter flaps per second||6.5 shutter flaps per second|
|370 shots per battery charge||750 shots per battery charge|
|127 x 84 x 65 mm, 556 g||146 x 108 x 74 mm, 822 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS 400D and the Canon EOS 40D? 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.
The physical size and weight of the Canon 400D and the Canon 40D are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon 40D is considerably larger (48 percent) than the Canon 400D. Moreover, the 40D is substantially heavier (48 percent) than the 400D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 400D nor the 40D 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. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can compare the optics available in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.
The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. 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.
|Canon 400D||127 mm||84 mm||65 mm||556 g||370||n||Aug 2006||799|
|Canon 40D||146 mm||108 mm||74 mm||822 g||750||n||Aug 2007||1,299|
|Canon 750D||132 mm||101 mm||78 mm||555 g||440||n||Feb 2015||749|
|Canon 760D||132 mm||101 mm||78 mm||565 g||440||n||Feb 2015||649|
|Canon 650D||133 mm||100 mm||79 mm||575 g||440||n||Jun 2012||849|
|Canon 1100D||130 mm||100 mm||78 mm||495 g||700||n||Feb 2011||449|
|Canon 550D||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||530 g||440||n||Feb 2010||699|
|Canon 500D||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||520 g||400||n||Mar 2009||799|
|Canon 50D||146 mm||108 mm||74 mm||822 g||800||Y||Aug 2008||1,299|
|Canon 450D||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||524 g||500||n||Jan 2008||799|
|Canon 30D||144 mm||106 mm||74 mm||785 g||750||n||Feb 2006||1,399|
|Canon 350D||127 mm||94 mm||64 mm||540 g||400||n||Feb 2005||899|
|Canon 20D||144 mm||106 mm||72 mm||770 g||700||n||Aug 2004||1,499|
|Nikon D90||132 mm||103 mm||77 mm||703 g||850||n||Aug 2008||1,299|
|Nikon D40X||124 mm||94 mm||64 mm||522 g||520||n||Mar 2007||729|
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The 400D was launched at a markedly lower price (by 38 percent) than the 40D, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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.
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. 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the 40D is 1 percent bigger. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.6. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
Technology-wise, the 40D uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 3) than the 400D (DIGIC II), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.
Even though the 40D has a slightly larger sensor, both cameras offer the same resolution of 10.1 megapixels. This implies that the 40D has a lower pixel density and marginally larger individual pixels (with a pixel pitch of 5.73μm versus 5.71μm for the 400D), which gives it a potential advantage in terms of light gathering capacity. In addition, the 40D is a somewhat more recent model (by 11 months) than the 400D, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time.
The Canon EOS 400D has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon EOS 40D are ISO 100 to ISO 1600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-3200.
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. 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"). The Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The 400D and the 40D are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinders of both cameras offer the same field of view (95%), but the viewfinder of the 40D has a higher magnification than the one of the 400D (0.59x vs 0.49x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Canon 400D and Canon 40D along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
One feature that is present on the 40D, but is missing on the 400D is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the 400D and the 40D write their files to Compact Flash cards.
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 400D and Canon EOS 40D and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
Studio photographers will appreciate that the Canon 40D (unlike the 400D) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.
Both the 400D and the 40D have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 400D was replaced by the Canon 450D, while the 40D was followed by the Canon 50D. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Canon 400D or the Canon 40D – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS 400D:
- More compact: Is smaller (127x84mm vs 146x108mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 266g or 32 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (38 percent cheaper at launch).
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in August 2006).
Advantages of the Canon EOS 40D:
- Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 3 vs DIGIC II).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.59x vs 0.49x).
- Easier setting verification: Features a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.5") for image review and settings control.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (6.5 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (750 versus 370) out of a single battery charge.
- Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (11 months) more recently.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the 40D is the clear winner of the contest (9 : 4 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. 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon 400D and the Canon 40D place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the 400D and the 40D in practical situations. 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 where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). 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.
|Canon 400D||+ +||+ +||o||4.5/5||4/5||Aug 2006||799|
|Canon 40D||+ +||+ +||4.5/5||o||4.5/5||Aug 2007||1,299|
|Canon 750D||..||75/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2015||749|
|Canon 760D||+||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2015||649|
|Canon 650D||+ +||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2012||849|
|Canon 1100D||80/100||69/100||4/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2011||449|
|Canon 550D||+ +||77/100||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2010||699|
|Canon 500D||+ +||74/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2009||799|
|Canon 50D||+ +||+ +||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2008||1,299|
|Canon 450D||+ +||+ +||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2008||799|
|Canon 30D||+ +||+ +||o||o||..||Feb 2006||1,399|
|Canon 350D||80/100||+ +||o||o||..||Feb 2005||899|
|Canon 20D||..||+ +||..||o||..||Aug 2004||1,499|
|Nikon D90||+ +||+ +||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2008||1,299|
|Nikon D40X||79/100||+ +||4/5||o||4/5||Mar 2007||729|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring 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.
Specifications: Canon 400D vs Canon 40D
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 Model||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Canon EF mount lenses||Canon EF mount lenses|
|Launch Date||August 2006||August 2007|
|Launch Price||USD 799||USD 1,299|
|Sensor Specs||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||22.2 x 14.8 mm||22.3 x 14.9 mm|
|Sensor Area||328.56 mm2||332.27 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||26.7 mm||26.8 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||10.1 Megapixels||10.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3888 x 2592 pixels||3888 x 2592 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||5.71 μm||5.73 μm|
|Pixel Density||3.07 MP/cm2||3.03 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||no Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 1,600 ISO||100 - 1,600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||100 - 3,200 ISO|
|Image Processor||DIGIC II||DIGIC 3|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||62||64|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||22.1||22.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||11.0||11.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||664||703|
|Screen Specs||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||95%||95%|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.5inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots||230k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Focus System||Phase-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||3 shutter flaps/s||6.5 shutter flaps/s|
|Shutter Life Expectancy||50 000 actuations||100 000 actuations|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||CF cards||CF cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Studio Flash||no PC Sync||PC Sync socket|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||no HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Canon 400D||Canon 40D|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||370 shots per charge||750 shots per charge|
127 x 84 x 65 mm
(5.0 x 3.3 x 2.6 in)
146 x 108 x 74 mm
(5.7 x 4.3 x 2.9 in)
|Camera Weight||556 g (19.6 oz)||822 g (29.0 oz)|
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