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Canon 600D vs 850D

The Canon EOS 600D (called Canon T3i in some regions) and the Canon EOS 850D (labelled Canon T8i in some countries) are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in February 2011 and February 2020. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The 600D has a resolution of 17.9 megapixels, whereas the 850D provides 24 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon 600D
versus
Canon 850D
Canon 600D Canon 850D
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Canon EF mount lenses Canon EF mount lenses
17.9 MP, APS-C Sensor 24 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/30p Video 4K/24p Video
ISO 100-6,400 (100 - 12,800) ISO 100-25,600 (100 - 51,200)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 3.0 LCD, 1040k dots
Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel touchscreen
3.7 shutter flaps per second 7.5 shutter flaps per second
440 shots per battery charge800 shots per battery charge
133 x 100 x 80 mm, 570 g 131 x 103 x 76 mm, 515 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS 600D and the Canon EOS 850D? 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 600D and the Canon 850D are illustrated 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 600D vs Canon 850D
Compare 600D versus 850D top
Comparison 600D or 850D rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon 850D is somewhat larger (1 percent) than the Canon 600D. However, the 850D is markedly lighter (10 percent) than the 600D. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the 600D nor the 850D 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.

Concerning battery life, the 600D gets 440 shots out of its LP-E8 battery, while the 850D can take 800 images on a single charge of its LP-E17 power pack.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, you can navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from a broad list of cameras there.

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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 600D 133 mm 100 mm 80 mm 570 g 440 n Feb 2011 599 i
2.
 
Canon 850D 131 mm 103 mm 76 mm 515 g 800 n Feb 2020 749 i
3.
 
Canon 250D 122 mm 93 mm 70 mm 449 g 1070 n Apr 2019 599 i
4.
 
Canon 77D 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 540 g 600 n Feb 2017 899 i
5.
 
Canon 800D 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 532 g 600 n Feb 2017 749 i
6.
 
Canon 750D 132 mm 101 mm 78 mm 555 g 440 n Feb 2015 749 i
7.
 
Canon 760D 132 mm 101 mm 78 mm 565 g 440 n Feb 2015 649 i
8.
 
Canon 1200D 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449 i
9.
 
Canon 100D 117 mm 91 mm 69 mm 407 g 380 n Mar 2013 549 i
10.
 
Canon 700D 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 n Mar 2013 649 i
11.
 
Canon 650D 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 n Jun 2012 849 i
12.
 
Canon M 109 mm 66 mm 32 mm 298 g 230 n Jul 2012 599 i
13.
 
Canon 1100D 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 495 g 700 n Feb 2011 449 i
14.
 
Canon 550D 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 530 g 440 n Feb 2010 699 i
15.
 
Canon 500D 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 520 g 400 n Mar 2009 799 i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The 600D was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 20 percent) than the 850D, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. 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.

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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 tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Technology-wise, the 850D uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 8) than the 600D (DIGIC 4), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon 600D and Canon 850D sensor measures

While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the 850D offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixels, compared with 17.9 MP of the 600D. This megapixels advantage translates into a 16 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the 850D has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 3.72μm versus 4.31μm for the 600D). However, it should be noted that the 850D is much more recent (by 9 years) than the 600D, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that compensate for the smaller pixel size.

The resolution advantage of the Canon 850D implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the 850D for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30 x 20 inches or 76.2 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24 x 16 inches or 61 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.3 inches or 50.8 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon 600D are 25.9 x 17.3 inches or 65.8 x 43.9 cm for good quality, 20.7 x 13.8 inches or 52.7 x 35.1 cm for very good quality, and 17.3 x 11.5 inches or 43.9 x 29.3 cm for excellent quality prints.

The 850D has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

The Canon EOS 600D 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 EOS 850D are ISO 100 to ISO 25600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-51200.

600D versus 850D MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 600D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.5793 65
2.
 
Canon 850D APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/24p...... ..
3.
 
Canon 250D APS-C 24.0 6000 40004K/25p...... ..
4.
 
Canon 77D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.3971 78
5.
 
Canon 800D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p...... ..
6.
 
Canon 750D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.712.0919 71
7.
 
Canon 760D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.612.0915 70
8.
 
Canon 1200D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.3724 63
9.
 
Canon 100D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.3843 63
10.
 
Canon 700D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.2681 61
11.
 
Canon 650D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.2722 62
12.
 
Canon M APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.2827 65
13.
 
Canon 1100D APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.0755 62
14.
 
Canon 550D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.5784 66
15.
 
Canon 500D APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.5663 63

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the 850D provides a better video resolution than the 600D. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/24p, while the 600D is limited to 1080/30p.

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Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The 600D and the 850D 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 600D has a higher magnification than the one of the 850D (0.53x vs 0.51x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon 600D and Canon 850D in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar 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 600Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel n 1/4000s 3.7 Y n
2.
 
Canon 850Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 7.5 Y n
3.
 
Canon 250Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
4.
 
Canon 77Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
5.
 
Canon 800Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
6.
 
Canon 750Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
7.
 
Canon 760Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
8.
 
Canon 1200Doptical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
9.
 
Canon 100Doptical n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.9 Y n
10.
 
Canon 700Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
11.
 
Canon 650Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
12.
 
Canon Mnone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.3 n n
13.
 
Canon 1100Doptical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
14.
 
Canon 550Doptical n 3.0 1040 fixed n 1/4000s 3.7 Y n
15.
 
Canon 500Doptical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.4 Y n

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The 850D has a touchscreen, while the 600D has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

Both cameras have an articulated rear screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This feature will be particularly appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies.

The Canon 850D has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the 600D and the 850D write their files to SDXC cards. The 850D supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the 600D cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD 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 600D and Canon EOS 850D 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 600DYmonomonoY-mini2.0---
2.
 
Canon 850DYstereomonoY-mini2.0Y-Y
3.
 
Canon 250DYstereomonoY-mini2.0Y-Y
4.
 
Canon 77DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
5.
 
Canon 800DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
6.
 
Canon 750DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
7.
 
Canon 760DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
8.
 
Canon 1200DYmonomono--mini2.0---
9.
 
Canon 100DYmonomonoY-mini2.0---
10.
 
Canon 700DYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
11.
 
Canon 650DYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
12.
 
Canon MYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
13.
 
Canon 1100DYstereomono--mini2.0---
14.
 
Canon 550DYstereo-Y-mini2.0---
15.
 
Canon 500DYmonomono--mini2.0---

It is notable that the 850D offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the 600D does not provide wifi capability.

The 850D is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Canon. In contrast, the 600D has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the 600D was succeeded by the Canon 650D. 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 what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Canon 600D better than the Canon 850D or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.


Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS 600D:

  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.53x vs 0.51x).
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced segment (20 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in February 2011).


Advantages of the Canon EOS 850D:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 17.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 16%.
  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 8 vs DIGIC 4).
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/24p vs 1080/30p).
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7.5 vs 3.7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (800 versus 440) out of a single battery charge.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
  • More modern: Reflects 9 years of technical progress since the 600D launch.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the 850D is the clear winner of the contest (12 : 3 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.

600D 03:12 850D

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon 600D and the Canon 850D 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 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 600D or the 850D. 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 600D3/5o77/1004.5/54.5/5 Feb 2011 599 i
2.
 
Canon 850D4/5+80/1004/53.5/5 Feb 2020 749 i
3.
 
Canon 250D..o79/1004/54/5 Apr 2019 599 i
4.
 
Canon 77D4.5/5..82/1004.5/54/5 Feb 2017 899 i
5.
 
Canon 800D4.5/5..80/1004.5/54/5 Feb 2017 749 i
6.
 
Canon 750D5/5..75/1004.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749 i
7.
 
Canon 760D5/5+77/1004.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 649 i
8.
 
Canon 1200D3/5+..4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449 i
9.
 
Canon 100D4/5+78/1004/54/5 Mar 2013 549 i
10.
 
Canon 700D....76/1004.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649 i
11.
 
Canon 650D4/5+ +77/1004.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849 i
12.
 
Canon M3/5+..4/54/5 Jul 2012 599 i
13.
 
Canon 1100D..80/10069/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449 i
14.
 
Canon 550D..+ +77/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2010 699 i
15.
 
Canon 500D..+ +74/1004.5/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799 i
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. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Canon 600D:
Check Ebay offers
Canon 850D:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes 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.

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    Specifications: Canon 600D vs Canon 850D

    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 600D Canon 850D
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses Canon EF mount lenses
    Launch Date February 2011 February 2020
    Launch Price USD 599 USD 749
    Sensor Specs Canon 600D Canon 850D
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 22.3 x 14.9 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 332.27 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 26.8 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 1.6x
    Sensor Resolution 17.9 Megapixels 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5184 x 3456 pixels 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.31 μm 3.72 μm
    Pixel Density 5.39 MP/cm2 7.22 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 4K/24p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 6,400 ISO 100 - 25,600 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 51,200 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 4 DIGIC 8
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 65 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 22.1 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.5 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 793 ..
    Screen Specs Canon 600D Canon 850D
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.53x 0.51x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 1040k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen Swivel screen
    Touch Input no Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon 600D Canon 850D
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing Aidno Peaking FeatureFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/4000s 1/4000s
    Continuous Shooting 3.7 shutter flaps/s 7.5 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy100 000 actuations100 000 actuations
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Fill Flash Built-in Flash Built-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Canon 600D Canon 850D
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port External MIC port
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Canon 600D Canon 850D
    Battery Type LP-E8 LP-E17
    Battery Life (CIPA)440 shots per charge800 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 133 x 100 x 80 mm
    (5.2 x 3.9 x 3.1 in)
    131 x 103 x 76 mm
    (5.2 x 4.1 x 3.0 in)
    Camera Weight 570 g (20.1 oz) 515 g (18.2 oz)

    Did you notice an error on this page? If so, please get in touch, so that we can correct the information.

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