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Canon 500D vs G1X

The Canon EOS 500D (called Canon T1i in some regions) and the Canon PowerShot G1 X are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in March 2009 and January 2012. The 500D is a DSLR, while the G1X is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (500D) and an 1.5-inch (G1X) sensor. The 500D has a resolution of 15.1 megapixels, whereas the G1X provides 14.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon 500D   Canon G1 X
Canon 500D Canon G1 X
Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
Canon EF mount lenses 28-112mm f/2.8-5.8
15.1 MP, APS-C Sensor 14.2 MP, 1.5" Sensor
1080/20p Video 1080/24p Video
ISO 100-6400 (100-12800) ISO 100-12800
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0" LCD, 920k dots 3.0" LCD, 922k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel touchscreen
3.4 shutter flaps per second 1.9 shutter flaps per second
400 shots per battery charge250 shots per battery charge
129 x 98 x 62 mm, 520 g 117 x 81 x 65 mm, 534 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS 500D and the Canon PowerShot G1 X? 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

The physical size and weight of the Canon 500D and the Canon G1 X 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 size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Canon 500D vs Canon G1 X
Compare 500D versus G1X top
Comparison 500D or G1X rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon G1 X is notably smaller (25 percent) than the Canon 500D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 500D nor the G1X are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the G1X has a lens built in, whereas the 500D 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 500D and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the 500D gets 400 shots out of its LP-E5 battery, while the G1X can take 250 images on a single charge of its NB-10L 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)
Camera
Model
 
Canon 500D» 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.3 oz 400 n Mar 2009 799- i Canon 500D
 
Canon G1 X« 4.6 in 3.2 in 2.6 in 18.8 oz 250 n Jan 2012 799- i Canon G1 X
 
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 649- i Canon 760D
 
Canon 1200D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 16.9 oz 500 n Feb 2014 449- i Canon 1200D
 
Canon G1 X Mark II« » 4.6 in 2.9 in 2.6 in 19.5 oz 240 n Feb 2014 799 i i Canon G1 X Mark II
 
Canon 700D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.5 oz 440 n Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
 
Canon G16« » 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 n Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
 
Canon 650D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.3 oz 440 n Jun 2012 849- i Canon 650D
 
Canon T4i« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.3 oz 440 n Jun 2012 849- i Canon T4i
 
Canon 600D« » 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 20.1 oz 440 n Feb 2011 599- i Canon 600D
 
Canon T3« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 3.1 in 17.5 oz 700 n Feb 2011 449- i Canon T3
 
Canon 550D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.7 oz 440 n Feb 2010 699- i Canon 550D
 
Canon T1i« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.3 oz 400 n Mar 2009 799- i Canon T1i
 
Canon 450D« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.5 oz 500 n Jan 2008 799- i Canon 450D
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

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.

 

Sensor comparison

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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 500D features an APS-C sensor and the Canon G1 X an 1.5-inch sensor. The sensor area in the G1X is 21 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 1.85. The sensor in the 500D has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the G1X offers a 4:3 aspect.

Technology-wise, the G1X uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 5) than the 500D (DIGIC 4), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon 500D and Canon G1 X sensor measures

With 15.1MP, the 500D offers a slightly higher resolution than the G1X (14.2MP), but the 500D nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.69μm versus 4.30μm for the G1X) due to its larger sensor. However, the G1X is a much more recent model (by 2 years and 9 months) than the 500D, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels.

The resolution advantage of the Canon 500D implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the 500D for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23.8 x 15.8 inch or 60.4 x 40.2 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 19 x 12.7 inch or 48.3 x 32.2 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.8 x 10.6 inch or 40.2 x 26.8 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon G1 X are 21.8 x 16.3 inch or 55.3 x 41.5 cm for good quality, 17.4 x 13.1 inch or 44.2 x 33.2 cm for very good quality, and 14.5 x 10.9 inch or 36.8 x 27.6 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon EOS 500D has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon PowerShot G1 X are ISO 100 to ISO 12800 (no boost).

500D versus G1X MP

For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. 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"). The Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-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 500D» APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.566363Canon 500D
 
Canon G1 X« 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 32641080/24p21.710.864460Canon G1 X
 
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 1200D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463Canon 1200D
 
Canon G1 X Mark II« » 1.5-inch 13.0 4160 31201080/30p21.510.858158Canon G1 X Mark II
 
Canon 700D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161Canon 700D
 
Canon G16« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.723054Canon G16
 
Canon 650D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262Canon 650D
 
Canon T4i« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262Canon T4i
 
Canon 600D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.579365Canon 600D
 
Canon T3« » APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.075562Canon T3
 
Canon 550D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.578466Canon 550D
 
Canon T1i« » APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.566363Canon T1i
 
Canon 450D« » APS-C 12.2 4272 2848-21.910.869261Canon 450D

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the G1X provides a faster frame rate than the 500D. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/24p, while the 500D is limited to 1080/20p.

 

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The 500D and the G1X 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 table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon 500D and Canon G1 X 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)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Canon 500D»optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.4 Y n Canon 500D
 
Canon G1 X«optical n 3.0 922 Swivel n 1/4000s 1.9 Y Y Canon G1 X
 
Canon 750D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 750D
 
Canon 760D« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 760D
 
Canon 1200D« »optical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Canon 1200D
 
Canon G1 X Mark II« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 5.2 Y Y Canon G1 X Mark II
 
Canon 700D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 700D
 
Canon G16« »optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.2 Y Y Canon G16
 
Canon 650D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 650D
 
Canon T4i« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon T4i
 
Canon 600D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel n 1/4000s 3.7 Y n Canon 600D
 
Canon T3« »optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Canon T3
 
Canon 550D« »optical n 3.0 1040 fixed n 1/4000s 3.7 Y n Canon 550D
 
Canon T1i« »optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.4 Y n Canon T1i
 
Canon 450D« »optical n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.5 Y n Canon 450D
The G1X 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 500D does not have a selfie-screen.

The 500D writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the G1X uses SDXC cards.

 

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 500D and Canon PowerShot G1 X 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 500D»Ymonomono--mini2.0---Canon 500D
 
Canon G1 X«Ystereomono--mini2.0---Canon G1 X
 
Canon 750D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon 750D
 
Canon 760D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon 760D
 
Canon 1200D« »Ymonomono--mini2.0---Canon 1200D
 
Canon G1 X Mark II« »Ystereomono--mini2.0YY-Canon G1 X Mark II
 
Canon 700D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 700D
 
Canon G16« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Canon G16
 
Canon 650D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 650D
 
Canon T4i« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon T4i
 
Canon 600D« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 600D
 
Canon T3« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Canon T3
 
Canon 550D« »Ystereo-Y-mini2.0---Canon 550D
 
Canon T1i« »Ymonomono--mini2.0---Canon T1i
 
Canon 450D« »Y----mini2.0---Canon 450D

Both the 500D and the G1X have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The 500D was replaced by the Canon 550D, while the G1X was followed by the Canon G1X Mark II. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.


Review summary

So how do things add up? Is the Canon 500D better than the Canon G1 X or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS 500D:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (15.1 vs 14.2MP) with a 5% higher linear resolution.
  • More dynamic range: Captures a larger spectrum of light and dark details (0.7 EV of extra DR).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3.4 vs 1.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • 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.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in March 2009).


Advantages of the Canon PowerShot G1 X:

  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 5 vs DIGIC 4).
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/24p versus 1080/20p).
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the 500D requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (117x81mm vs 129x98mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 9 months of technical progress since the 500D launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the G1X comes out slightly ahead of the 500D (7 : 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. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

500D 06:07 G1X

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon 500D and the Canon G1 X place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera and Best Travel-Zoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

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 shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the 500D or the G1X. 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.

Expert reviews

This is why expert reviews are important. 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.

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 500D»+ +74/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799- i Canon 500D
 
Canon G1 X«+76/1004/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 799- i Canon G1 X
 
Canon 750D« »-75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749- i Canon 750D
 
Canon 760D« »+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 649- i Canon 760D
 
Canon 1200D« »+-4/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449- i Canon 1200D
 
Canon G1 X Mark II« »+77/1004/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 799 i i Canon G1 X Mark II
 
Canon 700D« »-76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
 
Canon G16« »+-4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
 
Canon 650D« »+ +77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849- i Canon 650D
 
Canon T4i« »+ +77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849- i Canon T4i
 
Canon 600D« »o77/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2011 599- i Canon 600D
 
Canon T3« »80/10069/1004/54/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449- i Canon T3
 
Canon 550D« »+ +77/1004/55/54.5/5 Feb 2010 699- i Canon 550D
 
Canon T1i« »+ +74/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799- i Canon T1i
 
Canon 450D« »+ ++ +4/55/54.5/5 Jan 2008 799- i Canon 450D
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price 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 500D:
Check Ebay offers
Canon G1 X:
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 use the search menu below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

~

    Specifications: Canon 500D vs Canon G1 X

    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 500D Canon G1 X
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses 28-112mm f/2.8-5.8
    Launch Date March 2009 January 2012
    Launch Price USD 799 USD 799
    Sensor Specs Canon 500D Canon G1 X
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor 1.5" Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 18.7 x 14.0 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 261.8 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 23.4 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 1.85x
    Sensor Resolution 15.1 Megapixels 14.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4752 x 3168 pixels 4352 x 3264 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.69 μm 4.30 μm
    Pixel Density 4.53 MP/cm2 5.43 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/20p Video 1080/24p Video
    ISO Setting 100-6400 ISO 100-12800 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-12800 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor DIGIC 4 DIGIC 5
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 63 60
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 21.7 21.7
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.5 10.8
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 663 644
    Screen Specs Canon 500D Canon G1 X
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 74%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.54x ..x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 920k dots 922k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon 500D Canon G1 X
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3.4 shutter flaps/s 1.9 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDHC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no no
    Connectivity Specs Canon 500D Canon G1 X
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Canon 500D Canon G1 X
    Battery Type LP-E5 NB-10L
    Battery Life (CIPA)400 shots per charge250 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 129 x 98 x 62 mm
    (5.1 x 3.9 x 2.4 in)
    117 x 81 x 65 mm
    (4.6 x 3.2 x 2.6 in)
    Camera Weight 520 g (18.3 oz) 534 g (18.8 oz)

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