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Canon D60 vs Olympus E-500

The Canon EOS-D60 and the Olympus Evolt E-500 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in February 2002 and September 2005. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are based on an APS-C (D60) and a Four Thirds (E-500) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 6.3 megapixels, whereas the Olympus provides 8 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon D60 versus Olympus E-500
Canon D60 Olympus E-500
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Canon EF mount lenses Four Thirds lenses
6.3 MP, APS-C Sensor 8 MP, Four Thirds Sensor
no Video no Video
ISO 100-1,000 ISO 100-400 (100 - 1,600)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
1.8 LCD, 114k dots 2.5 LCD, 215k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 2.5 shutter flaps per second
620 shots per battery charge750 shots per battery charge
150 x 107 x 75 mm, 855 g 130 x 95 x 66 mm, 479 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS-D60 and the Olympus Evolt E-500? 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 side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon D60 and the Olympus E-500. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Canon D60 vs Olympus E-500
Compare D60 versus E-500 top
Comparison D60 or E-500 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-500 is notably smaller (23 percent) than the Canon D60. Moreover, the E-500 is substantially lighter (44 percent) than the D60. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the D60 nor the E-500 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. A larger imaging sensor will tend to go along with bigger and heavier lenses, although exceptions exist. You can compare the optics available for the two cameras in the Canon EF Lens Catalog (D60) and the Four Thirds Lens Catalog (E-500).

Concerning battery life, the D60 gets 620 shots out of its BP-511 battery, while the E-500 can take 750 images on a single charge of its BLM-1 power pack.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. 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 D60 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 30.2 oz 620 n Feb 2002 2,999i
2.
 
Olympus E-500 5.1 in 3.7 in 2.6 in 16.9 oz 750 n Sep 2005 599i
3.
 
Canon T7 5.1 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 16.8 oz 500 n Feb 2018 449 i
4.
 
Canon XC10 4.9 in 4.0 in 4.8 in 36.7 oz 370 n Apr 2015 2,499i
5.
 
Canon 40D 5.7 in 4.3 in 2.9 in 29.0 oz 750 n Aug 2007 1,299i
6.
 
Canon 30D 5.7 in 4.2 in 2.9 in 27.7 oz 750 n Feb 2006 1,399i
7.
 
Canon 20D 5.7 in 4.2 in 2.8 in 27.2 oz 700 n Aug 2004 1,499i
8.
 
Canon 10D 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 30.0 oz 500 n Feb 2003 1,999i
9.
 
Canon Rebel 5.6 in 3.9 in 2.8 in 22.9 oz 400 n Aug 2003 899i
10.
 
Canon D30 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 26.5 oz 540 n May 2000 2,999i
11.
 
Contax N Digital 6.0 in 5.4 in 3.1 in 34.9 oz 100 n Feb 2002 7,399i
12.
 
Nikon D100 5.7 in 4.6 in 3.2 in 27.5 oz 370 n Feb 2002 1,999i
13.
 
Olympus E-410 5.1 in 3.6 in 2.1 in 15.3 oz 500 n Mar 2007 699i
14.
 
Olympus E-510 5.4 in 3.6 in 2.7 in 19.0 oz 750 n Mar 2007 799i
15.
 
Olympus E-330 5.5 in 3.4 in 2.8 in 22.5 oz 750 n Jan 2006 999i
16.
 
Olympus E-400 5.1 in 3.6 in 2.1 in 15.3 oz 500 n Sep 2006 699i
17.
 
Olympus E-300 5.8 in 3.3 in 2.5 in 22.0 oz 750 n Sep 2004 799i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. 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 E-500 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 80 percent) than the D60, 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

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Sensor comparison

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon D60 features an APS-C sensor and the Olympus E-500 a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the E-500 is 34 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 2.0. The sensor in the D60 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the E-500 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Canon D60 and Olympus E-500 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the E-500 offers a higher resolution of 8 megapixels, compared with 6.3 MP of the D60. 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 5.30μm versus 7.38μm for the D60). However, it should be noted that the E-500 is much more recent (by 3 years and 7 months) than the D60, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.

The resolution advantage of the Olympus E-500 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the E-500 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 16.3 x 12.2 inches or 41.5 x 31.1 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 13.1 x 9.8 inches or 33.2 x 24.9 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 10.9 x 8.2 inches or 27.6 x 20.7 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon D60 are 15.4 x 10.2 inches or 39 x 26 cm for good quality, 12.3 x 8.2 inches or 31.2 x 20.8 cm for very good quality, and 10.2 x 6.8 inches or 26 x 17.3 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon EOS-D60 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1000. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus Evolt E-500 are ISO 100 to ISO 400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-1600.

D60 versus E-500 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 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 D60 APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none........
2.
 
Olympus E-500 Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448none........
3.
 
Canon T7 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p........
4.
 
Canon XC10 1-inch 12.0 4000 30004K/30p........
5.
 
Canon 40D APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.370364
6.
 
Canon 30D APS-C 8.2 3504 2336none21.510.873659
7.
 
Canon 20D APS-C 8.2 3504 2336none21.911.072162
8.
 
Canon 10D APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.110.957157
9.
 
Canon Rebel APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.010.854455
10.
 
Canon D30 APS-C 3.1 2160 1440none........
11.
 
Contax N Digital Full Frame 6.1 3040 2008none........
12.
 
Nikon D100 APS-C 6.0 3008 2000none........
13.
 
Olympus E-410 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none21.110.049451
14.
 
Olympus E-510 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none21.210.044252
15.
 
Olympus E-330 Four Thirds 7.4 3136 2352none........
16.
 
Olympus E-400 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none........
17.
 
Olympus E-300 Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448none........
Neither the D60 nor the E-500 offer Live View, so that they cannot project the live image that the sensor receives onto the rear screen. Moreover, both cameras are still-image focused and cannot record videos.
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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The D60 and the E-500 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 E-500 (0.54x vs 0.45x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon D60, the Olympus E-500, and comparable 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 D60optical Y 1.8 114 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
2.
 
Olympus E-500optical n 2.5 215 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n
3.
 
Canon T7optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
4.
 
Canon XC10none n 3.0 1030 tilting Y 1/2000s 3.8 n Y
5.
 
Canon 40Doptical Y 3.0 230 fixed n 1/8000s 6.5 Y n
6.
 
Canon 30Doptical Y 2.5 230 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n
7.
 
Canon 20Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n
8.
 
Canon 10Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
9.
 
Canon Rebeloptical n 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n
10.
 
Canon D30optical Y 1.8 114 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
11.
 
Contax N Digitaloptical Y 2.0 200 fixed n 1/8000s 4.0 n n
12.
 
Nikon D100optical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
13.
 
Olympus E-410optical n 2.5 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
14.
 
Olympus E-510optical n 2.5 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y Y
15.
 
Olympus E-330optical n 2.5 215 tilting n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
16.
 
Olympus E-400optical n 2.5 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
17.
 
Olympus E-300optical n 1.8 134 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n

One feature that is present on the D60, but is missing on the E-500 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 E-500 uses Compact Flash or xD Picture cards. The E-500 features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the D60 only has one slot.

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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-D60 and Olympus Evolt E-500 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 D60Y-----1.1---
2.
 
Olympus E-500Y-----2.0---
3.
 
Canon T7Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-
4.
 
Canon XC10YstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon 40DY-----2.0---
6.
 
Canon 30DY-----2.0---
7.
 
Canon 20DY-----1.1---
8.
 
Canon 10DY-----1.1---
9.
 
Canon RebelY-----1.1---
10.
 
Canon D30Y-----1.0---
11.
 
Contax N DigitalY-----FW---
12.
 
Nikon D100Y-----1.1---
13.
 
Olympus E-410Y-----2.0---
14.
 
Olympus E-510Y-----2.0---
15.
 
Olympus E-330Y-----2.0---
16.
 
Olympus E-400Y-----2.0---
17.
 
Olympus E-300Y-----2.0---

Studio photographers will appreciate that the Canon D60 (unlike the E-500) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.

Both the D60 and the E-500 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D60 was replaced by the Canon 10D, while the E-500 was followed by the Olympus E-510. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Olympus websites.

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Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon D60 and the Olympus E-500? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS-D60:

  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.54x vs 0.45x).
  • 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.
  • 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).

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Reasons to prefer the Olympus Evolt E-500:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (8 vs 6.3MP), which boosts linear resolution by 11%.
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (2.5" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (215k vs 114k dots).
  • More compact: Is smaller (130x95mm vs 150x107mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 376g or 44 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (750 versus 620) out of a single battery charge.
  • Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (2.0 vs 1.1).
  • Greater peace of mind: Features a second card slot as a backup in case of memory card failure.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (80 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 3 years and 7 months of technical progress since the D60 launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the E-500 is the clear winner of the contest (10 : 5 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 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.

D60 05:10 E-500

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon D60 and the Olympus E-500 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 D60 and the E-500 in practical situations. 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 hands-on reviews by experts are important. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera 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 D60....+ +o.. Feb 2002 2,999i
2.
 
Olympus E-500..76/100+ +.... Sep 2005 599i
3.
 
Canon T7..o..3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 449 i
4.
 
Canon XC10....80/100.... Apr 2015 2,499i
5.
 
Canon 40D..+ ++ +4.5/54.5/5 Aug 2007 1,299i
6.
 
Canon 30D..+ ++ +o.. Feb 2006 1,399i
7.
 
Canon 20D....+ +.... Aug 2004 1,499i
8.
 
Canon 10D....+ +.... Feb 2003 1,999i
9.
 
Canon Rebel....+ +.... Aug 2003 899i
10.
 
Canon D30....+ +.... May 2000 2,999i
11.
 
Contax N Digital.......... Feb 2002 7,399i
12.
 
Nikon D100....+ +o.. Feb 2002 1,999i
13.
 
Olympus E-410..86/100+ +4/54.5/5 Mar 2007 699i
14.
 
Olympus E-510..89/100+ +3.5/54.5/5 Mar 2007 799i
15.
 
Olympus E-330....+o.. Jan 2006 999i
16.
 
Olympus E-400..85/100..4/54/5 Sep 2006 699i
17.
 
Olympus E-300....+o4.5/5 Sep 2004 799i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, 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 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 D60:
Check Ebay offers
Olympus E-500:
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.

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    Specifications: Canon D60 vs Olympus E-500

    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 D60 Olympus E-500
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses Four Thirds lenses
    Launch Date February 2002 September 2005
    Launch Price USD 2,999 USD 599
    Sensor Specs Canon D60 Olympus E-500
    Sensor Technology CMOS CCD
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor Four Thirds Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.7 x 15.1 mm 17.3 x 13.0 mm
    Sensor Area 342.77 mm2 224.9 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 27.3 mm 21.6 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 2.0x
    Sensor Resolution 6.3 Megapixels 8 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3072 x 2048 pixels 3264 x 2448 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 7.38 μm 5.30 μm
    Pixel Density 1.84 MP/cm2 3.55 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability no Video no Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 1,000 ISO 100 - 400 ISO
    ISO Boost no Enhancement 100 - 1,600 ISO
    Screen Specs Canon D60 Olympus E-500
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.54x 0.45x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel no Top Display
    Rear LCD Size 1.8inch 2.5inch
    LCD Resolution 114k dots 215k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon D60 Olympus E-500
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 2.5 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium CF cards CF or XD cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Dual card slots
    Connectivity Specs Canon D60 Olympus E-500
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    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 Olympus E-500
    Battery Type BP-511 BLM-1
    Battery Life (CIPA)620 shots per charge750 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 150 x 107 x 75 mm
    (5.9 x 4.2 x 3.0 in)
    130 x 95 x 66 mm
    (5.1 x 3.7 x 2.6 in)
    Camera Weight 855 g (30.2 oz) 479 g (16.9 oz)

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