Canon D60 vs Nikon D50
The Canon EOS-D60 and the Nikon D50 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in February 2002 and April 2005. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 6.3 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 6 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS-D60 and the Nikon D50? 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 side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon D60 and the Nikon D50. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size 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 Nikon D50 is notably smaller (15 percent) than the Canon D60. Moreover, the D50 is markedly lighter (27 percent) than the D60. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the D60 nor the D50 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. Yet, since both cameras are based around an APS-C sensor, their respective lenses will tend to have similar dimensions and heft. You can compare the optics available for the two cameras in the Canon EF Lens Catalog (D60) and the Nikon Lens Catalog (D50).
Concerning battery life, the D60 gets 620 shots out of its BP-511 battery, while the D50 can take 400 images on a single charge of its EN-EL3 power pack.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. 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.
|1.||Canon D60||150 mm||107 mm||75 mm||855 g||620||n||Feb 2002||2,999||ebay.com|
|2.||Nikon D50||133 mm||102 mm||76 mm||620 g||400||n||Apr 2005||749||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon T7||129 mm||101 mm||78 mm||475 g||500||n||Feb 2018||449||amazon.com|
|4.||Canon XC10||125 mm||102 mm||122 mm||1040 g||370||n||Apr 2015||2,499||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon 40D||146 mm||108 mm||74 mm||822 g||750||n||Aug 2007||1,299||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon 30D||144 mm||106 mm||74 mm||785 g||750||n||Feb 2006||1,399||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon 20D||144 mm||106 mm||72 mm||770 g||700||n||Aug 2004||1,499||ebay.com|
|8.||Canon 10D||150 mm||107 mm||75 mm||850 g||500||n||Feb 2003||1,999||ebay.com|
|9.||Canon Rebel||142 mm||99 mm||72 mm||649 g||400||n||Aug 2003||899||ebay.com|
|10.||Canon D30||150 mm||107 mm||75 mm||750 g||540||n||May 2000||2,999||ebay.com|
|11.||Contax N Digital||152 mm||138 mm||80 mm||990 g||100||n||Feb 2002||7,399||ebay.com|
|12.||Nikon D60||126 mm||94 mm||64 mm||522 g||500||n||Jan 2008||629||ebay.com|
|13.||Nikon D40||124 mm||94 mm||64 mm||522 g||470||n||Nov 2006||499||ebay.com|
|14.||Nikon D80||132 mm||103 mm||77 mm||668 g||600||n||Aug 2006||999||ebay.com|
|15.||Nikon D70s||140 mm||111 mm||78 mm||679 g||500||n||Apr 2005||899||ebay.com|
|16.||Nikon D70||140 mm||111 mm||78 mm||679 g||400||n||Jan 2004||999||ebay.com|
|17.||Nikon D100||144 mm||116 mm||81 mm||780 g||370||n||Feb 2002||1,999||ebay.com|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
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 D50 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 75 percent) than the D60, which puts it into a different market segment. 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.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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. 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, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the D50 is 8 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have format factors, respectively, of 1.6 (D60) and 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Canon D60 offers a higher resolution of 6.3 megapixels, compared with 6 MP of the Nikon D50. 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 7.38μm versus 7.85μm for the D50). Moreover, it should be noted that the D50 is much more recent (by 3 years and 1 month) than the D60, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.
The Canon EOS-D60 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1000. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D50 are ISO 200 to ISO 1600 (no boost).
In terms of underlying technology, the D60 is build around a CMOS sensor, while the D50 uses a CCD imager. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|11.||Contax N Digital||Full Frame||6.1||3040||2008||none||21.5||10.5||1283||59|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The D60 and the D50 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 D60 has a higher magnification than the one of the D50 (0.54x vs 0.50x), 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 D60 and Nikon D50 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|1.||Canon D60||optical||Y||1.8 / 114||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|2.||Nikon D50||optical||n||2.0 / 130||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5/s||Y||n|
|3.||Canon T7||optical||n||3.0 / 920||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|4.||Canon XC10||none||n||3.0 / 1030||tilting||Y||1/2000s||3.8/s||n||Y|
|5.||Canon 40D||optical||Y||3.0 / 230||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.5/s||Y||n|
|6.||Canon 30D||optical||Y||2.5 / 230||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|7.||Canon 20D||optical||Y||1.8 / 118||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|8.||Canon 10D||optical||Y||1.8 / 118||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|9.||Canon Rebel||optical||n||1.8 / 118||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5/s||Y||n|
|10.||Canon D30||optical||Y||1.8 / 114||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|11.||Contax N Digital||optical||Y||2.0 / 200||fixed||n||1/8000s||4.0/s||n||n|
|12.||Nikon D60||optical||n||2.5 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|13.||Nikon D40||optical||n||2.5 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5/s||Y||n|
|14.||Nikon D80||optical||n||2.5 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|15.||Nikon D70s||optical||n||2.0 / 130||fixed||n||1/8000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|16.||Nikon D70||optical||n||1.8 / 130||fixed||n||1/8000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|17.||Nikon D100||optical||Y||1.8 / 118||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.|
One feature that is present on the D60, but is missing on the D50 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.
The D60 writes its imaging data to Compact Flash cards, while the D50 uses SD 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-D60 and Nikon D50 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Canon D60||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.1||-||-||-|
|2.||Nikon D50||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|3.||Canon T7||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|4.||Canon XC10||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Canon 40D||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|6.||Canon 30D||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|7.||Canon 20D||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.1||-||-||-|
|8.||Canon 10D||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.1||-||-||-|
|9.||Canon Rebel||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.1||-||-||-|
|10.||Canon D30||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.0||-||-||-|
|11.||Contax N Digital||Y||- / -||-||-||-||FW||-||-||-|
|12.||Nikon D60||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Nikon D40||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|14.||Nikon D80||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|15.||Nikon D70s||Y||- / -||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Nikon D70||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.0||-||-||-|
|17.||Nikon D100||Y||- / -||-||-||-||1.1||-||-||-|
Studio photographers will appreciate that the Canon D60 (unlike the D50) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.
Both the D60 and the D50 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on ebay. The D60 was replaced by the Canon 10D, while the D50 was followed by the Nikon D40. Further information on the features and operation of the D60 and D50 can be found, respectively, in the Canon D60 Manual (free pdf) or the online Nikon D50 Manual.
So how do things add up? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon D60 and the Nikon D50? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS-D60:
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.54x vs 0.50x).
- Easier setting verification: Features an LCD display on top to control shooting parameters.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3 vs 2.5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (620 versus 400) on a single battery charge.
- Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in February 2002).
Advantages of the Nikon D50:
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (2.0" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (130k vs 114k dots).
- More compact: Is smaller (133x102mm vs 150x107mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 235g or 27 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (2.0 vs 1.1).
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (75 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 3 years and 1 month of technical progress since the D60 launch.
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D50 comes out slightly ahead of the D60 (7 : 6 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon D60 and the Nikon D50 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 technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the D60 or the D50 perform in practice. 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.
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], digitalcameraworld [DCW], 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.
|1.||Canon D60||..||..||..||+ +||o||..||Feb 2002||2,999||ebay.com|
|2.||Nikon D50||..||78/100||..||+ +||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2005||749||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon T7||..||o||3.5/5||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Feb 2018||449||amazon.com|
|4.||Canon XC10||..||..||..||80/100||..||..||Apr 2015||2,499||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon 40D||..||+ +||..||+ +||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2007||1,299||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon 30D||..||+ +||..||+ +||o||..||Feb 2006||1,399||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon 20D||..||..||..||+ +||..||..||Aug 2004||1,499||ebay.com|
|8.||Canon 10D||..||..||..||+ +||..||..||Feb 2003||1,999||ebay.com|
|9.||Canon Rebel||..||..||..||+ +||..||..||Aug 2003||899||ebay.com|
|10.||Canon D30||..||..||..||+ +||..||..||May 2000||2,999||ebay.com|
|11.||Contax N Digital||..||..||..||..||..||..||Feb 2002||7,399||ebay.com|
|12.||Nikon D60||..||80/100||..||+ +||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2008||629||ebay.com|
|13.||Nikon D40||..||81/100||..||+ +||o||4.5/5||Nov 2006||499||ebay.com|
|14.||Nikon D80||..||+||..||+ +||o||4.5/5||Aug 2006||999||ebay.com|
|15.||Nikon D70s||..||..||..||..||..||5/5||Apr 2005||899||ebay.com|
|16.||Nikon D70||..||..||..||+ +||..||..||Jan 2004||999||ebay.com|
|17.||Nikon D100||..||..||..||+ +||o||..||Feb 2002||1,999||ebay.com|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. 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. 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? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 1D Mark III vs Canon D60
- Canon 1D X vs Nikon D50
- Canon D60 vs Fujifilm X-A5
- Canon D60 vs Leica D-LUX 5
- Canon D60 vs Leica M Typ 262
- Canon D60 vs Panasonic TZ200
- Canon D60 vs Sony RX1R
- Nikon D50 vs Nikon D7200
- Nikon D50 vs Panasonic GH3
- Nikon D50 vs Panasonic TS7
- Nikon D50 vs Sigma fp
- Nikon D50 vs Sony A7S
Specifications: Canon D60 vs Nikon D50
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 D60||Nikon D50|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Canon EF mount lenses||Nikon F mount lenses|
|Launch Date||February 2002||April 2005|
|Launch Price||USD 2,999||USD 749|
|Sensor Specs||Canon D60||Nikon D50|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||22.7 x 15.1 mm||23.7 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||342.77 mm2||369.72 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||27.3 mm||28.4 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||6.3 Megapixels||6 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3072 x 2048 pixels||3008 x 2000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||7.38 μm||7.85 μm|
|Pixel Density||1.84 MP/cm2||1.63 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||no Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 1,000 ISO||200 - 1,600 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||55|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||20.9|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||10.8|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||560|
|Screen Specs||Canon D60||Nikon D50|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||95%||95%|
|Top-Level Screen||Control Panel||no Top Display|
|Rear LCD Size||1.8inch||2.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||114k dots||130k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon D60||Nikon D50|
|Focus System||Phase-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||3 shutter flaps/s||2.5 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||CF cards||SD cards|
|Single or Dual Card Slots||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon D60||Nikon D50|
|Studio Flash||PC Sync socket||no PC Sync|
|USB Connector||USB 1.1||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||no HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Canon D60||Nikon D50|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||620 shots per charge||400 shots per charge|
150 x 107 x 75 mm
(5.9 x 4.2 x 3.0 in)
133 x 102 x 76 mm
(5.2 x 4.0 x 3.0 in)
|Camera Weight||855 g (30.2 oz)||620 g (21.9 oz)|
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