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Canon D60 vs Pentax K-3

The Canon EOS-D60 and the Pentax K-3 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in February 2002 and October 2013. 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 Pentax provides 24.1 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 Pentax K-3
Canon D60 Pentax K-3
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Canon EF mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
6.3 MP, APS-C Sensor 24.1 MP, APS-C Sensor
no Video 1080/60i Video
ISO 100-1,000 ISO 100-51,200
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
1.8 LCD, 114k dots 3.2 LCD, 1037k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 8.3 shutter flaps per second
Lens stabilization onlyIn-body stabilization
not weather sealedWeathersealed body
620 shots per battery charge560 shots per battery charge
150 x 107 x 75 mm, 855 g 131 x 100 x 77 mm, 800 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS-D60 and the Pentax K-3? 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

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon D60 and the Pentax K-3 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The K-3 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the D60 is only available in black.

Size Canon D60 vs Pentax K-3
Compare D60 versus K-3 top
Comparison D60 or K-3 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Pentax K-3 is notably smaller (18 percent) than the Canon D60. Moreover, the K-3 is markedly lighter (6 percent) than the D60. It is noteworthy in this context that the K-3 is splash and dust-proof, while the D60 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.

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. Hence, you might want to study and compare the specifications of available lenses in order to get the full picture of the size and weight of the two camera systems.

Concerning battery life, the D60 gets 620 shots out of its BP-511 battery, while the K-3 can take 560 images on a single charge of its D-LI90 power pack.

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.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon D60 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 30.2 oz 620 n Feb 2002 2,999i
 
Pentax K-3 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.0 in 28.2 oz 560 Y Oct 2013 1,299i
 
Canon T7 5.1 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 16.8 oz 500 n Feb 2018 449 i
 
Canon XC10 4.9 in 4.0 in 4.8 in 36.7 oz .. n Apr 2015 2,499i
 
Canon 40D 5.7 in 4.3 in 2.9 in 29.0 oz 750 n Aug 2007 1,299i
 
Canon 30D 5.7 in 4.2 in 2.9 in 27.7 oz 750 n Feb 2006 1,399i
 
Canon 20D 5.7 in 4.2 in 2.8 in 27.2 oz 700 n Aug 2004 1,499i
 
Canon 10D 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 30.0 oz 500 n Feb 2003 1,999i
 
Canon Rebel 5.6 in 3.9 in 2.8 in 22.9 oz 400 n Aug 2003 899i
 
Canon D30 5.9 in 4.2 in 3.0 in 26.5 oz 540 n May 2000 2,999i
 
Contax N Digital 6.0 in 5.4 in 3.1 in 34.9 oz 100 n Feb 2002 7,399i
 
Nikon D100 5.7 in 4.6 in 3.2 in 27.5 oz 370 n Feb 2002 1,999i
 
Pentax KP 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.0 in 24.8 oz 390 Y Jan 2017 1,099 i
 
Pentax K-70 5.0 in 3.7 in 2.9 in 24.3 oz 410 Y Jun 2016 649 i
 
Pentax K-3 II 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.0 in 28.2 oz 720 Y Apr 2015 1,099 i
 
Pentax K-5 5.2 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 26.8 oz 740 Y Sep 2010 1,099i
 
Sony A77 5.6 in 4.1 in 3.2 in 25.8 oz 470 Y Aug 2011 1,399i
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 K-3 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 57 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. 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 imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the K-3 is 7 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.

Canon D60 and Pentax K-3 sensor measures

With 24.1MP, the K-3 offers a higher resolution than the D60 (6.3MP), but the K-3 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.90μm versus 7.38μm for the D60). Yet, the K-3 is a much more recent model (by 11 years and 7 months) than the D60, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the K-3 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Pentax K-3 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the K-3 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30.1 x 20 inches or 76.4 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24.1 x 16 inches or 61.1 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20.1 x 13.3 inches or 50.9 x 33.9 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 Pentax K-3 are ISO 100 to ISO 51200 (no boost).

D60 versus K-3 MP

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 table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar 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
 
Canon D60 APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none........
 
Pentax K-3 APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.713.4121680
 
Canon T7 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p........
 
Canon XC10 1-inch 12.0 4000 30004K/30p........
 
Canon 40D APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.370364
 
Canon 30D APS-C 8.2 3504 2336none21.510.873659
 
Canon 20D APS-C 8.2 3504 2336none21.911.072162
 
Canon 10D APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.110.957157
 
Canon Rebel APS-C 6.3 3072 2048none21.010.854455
 
Canon D30 APS-C 3.1 2160 1440none........
 
Contax N Digital Full Frame 6.1 3040 2008none........
 
Nikon D100 APS-C 6.0 3008 2000none........
 
Pentax KP APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i........
 
Pentax K-70 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i........
 
Pentax K-3 II APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/60i23.613.6110680
 
Pentax K-5 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/25p23.714.1116282
 
Sony A77 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.013.280178

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The K-3 indeed provides for movie recording, while the D60 does not. The highest resolution format that the K-3 can use is 1080/60i.

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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 K-3 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 viewfinder in the K-3 offers a wider field of view (100%) than the one in the D60 (95%), so that a larger proportion of the captured image is visible in the finder. In addition, the viewfinder of the K-3 has a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.54x), 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 Pentax K-3 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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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
 
Canon D60optical Y 1.8 114 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Pentax K-3optical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 Y Y
 
Canon T7optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon XC10none n 3.0 1030 tilting Y 1/2000s 3.8 n Y
 
Canon 40Doptical Y 3.0 230 fixed n 1/8000s 6.5 Y n
 
Canon 30Doptical Y 2.5 230 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon 20Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon 10Doptical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon Rebeloptical n 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n
 
Canon D30optical Y 1.8 114 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Contax N Digitaloptical Y 2.0 200 fixed n 1/8000s 4.0 n n
 
Nikon D100optical Y 1.8 118 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Pentax KPoptical n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/6000s 7.0 Y Y
 
Pentax K-70optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/6000s 6.0 Y Y
 
Pentax K-3 IIoptical Y 3.2 1037 fixed n 1/8000s 8.3 n Y
 
Pentax K-5optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 7.0 Y Y
 
Sony A772359 Y 3.0 921 full-flex n 1/8000s 12.0 Y Y

One feature that differentiates the K-3 and the D60 is in-body image stabilization (IBIS). The K-3 reduces the risk of handshake-induced blur with all attached lenses, while the D60 offers no blur reduction with lenses that themselves do not provide optical image stabilization.

The Pentax K-3 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.

The D60 writes its imaging data to Compact Flash cards, while the K-3 uses SDXC cards. The K-3 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 Pentax K-3 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
 
Canon D60Y-----1.1---
 
Pentax K-3YmonomonoYYmini3.0---
 
Canon T7Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-
 
Canon XC10YstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-
 
Canon 40DY-----2.0---
 
Canon 30DY-----2.0---
 
Canon 20DY-----1.1---
 
Canon 10DY-----1.1---
 
Canon RebelY-----1.1---
 
Canon D30Y-----1.0---
 
Contax N DigitalY-----FW---
 
Nikon D100Y-----1.1---
 
Pentax KPYstereomonoY--2.0Y--
 
Pentax K-70YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--
 
Pentax K-3 IIYmonomonoYYmini3.0---
 
Pentax K-5YstereomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Sony A77YstereomonoY-mini2.0---

Both cameras feature a PC Sync terminal to control professional strobe lights, which will be appreciated by studio photographers.

Both the D60 and the K-3 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D60 was replaced by the Canon 10D, while the K-3 was followed by the Pentax K-3 II. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Pentax websites.

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Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is the Canon D60 better than the Pentax K-3 or vice versa? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS-D60:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (620 versus 560) on a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in February 2002).

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Advantages of the Pentax K-3:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24.1 vs 6.3MP), which boosts linear resolution by 96%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 1080/60i video.
  • More complete view: Has a viewfinder with a larger field of view (100% vs 95%).
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.63x vs 0.54x).
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.2" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1037k vs 114k dots).
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8.3 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • More compact: Is smaller (131x100mm vs 150x107mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (3.0 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 (57 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 11 years and 7 months of technical progress since the D60 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the K-3 is the clear winner of the contest (17 : 3 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 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.

D60 03:17 K-3

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon D60 and the Pentax K-3 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 remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the D60 or the K-3 perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

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 (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.

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon D60..+ +o.... Feb 2002 2,999i
 
Pentax K-3..83/1005/54.5/55/5 Oct 2013 1,299i
 
Canon T7o..3.5/5..3.5/5 Feb 2018 449 i
 
Canon XC10..80/100...... Apr 2015 2,499i
 
Canon 40D+ ++ +4.5/5o4.5/5 Aug 2007 1,299i
 
Canon 30D+ ++ +oo.. Feb 2006 1,399i
 
Canon 20D..+ +..o.. Aug 2004 1,499i
 
Canon 10D..+ +..o.. Feb 2003 1,999i
 
Canon Rebel..+ +..o.. Aug 2003 899i
 
Canon D30..+ +...... May 2000 2,999i
 
Contax N Digital.......... Feb 2002 7,399i
 
Nikon D100..+ +oo.. Feb 2002 1,999i
 
Pentax KP..82/1005/5..4.5/5 Jan 2017 1,099 i
 
Pentax K-70..79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jun 2016 649 i
 
Pentax K-3 II....5/54.5/55/5 Apr 2015 1,099 i
 
Pentax K-5..83/1005/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2010 1,099i
 
Sony A7791/10081/100..4.5/55/5 Aug 2011 1,399i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time 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.

Canon D60:
Check Ebay offers
Pentax K-3:
Check Ebay offers

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 D60 vs Pentax K-3

    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 Pentax K-3
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses Pentax K mount lenses
    Launch Date February 2002 October 2013
    Launch Price USD 2,999 USD 1,299
    Sensor Specs Canon D60 Pentax K-3
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.7 x 15.1 mm 23.5 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 342.77 mm2 366.6 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 27.3 mm 28.2 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 6.3 Megapixels 24.1 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3072 x 2048 pixels 6016 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 7.38 μm 3.90 μm
    Pixel Density 1.84 MP/cm2 6.56 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability no Video 1080/60i Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 1,000 ISO 100 - 51,200 ISO
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) .. 80
    DXO Color Depth (bits) .. 23.7
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) .. 13.4
    DXO Low Light (ISO) .. 1216
    Screen Specs Canon D60 Pentax K-3
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.54x 0.63x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel Control Panel
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 1.8inch 3.2inch
    LCD Resolution 114k dots 1037k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon D60 Pentax K-3
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing Aidno Peaking FeatureFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/4000s 1/8000s
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 8.3 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Image StabilizationLens stabilization onlyIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium CF cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Dual card slots
    Connectivity Specs Canon D60 Pentax K-3
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket PC Sync socket
    USB Connector USB 1.1 USB 3.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port no MIC socket External MIC port
    Headphone Socket no Headphone port Headphone port
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Canon D60 Pentax K-3
    Environmental Sealingnot weather sealedWeathersealed body
    Battery Type BP-511 D-LI90
    Battery Life (CIPA)620 shots per charge560 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 150 x 107 x 75 mm
    (5.9 x 4.2 x 3.0 in)
    131 x 100 x 77 mm
    (5.2 x 3.9 x 3.0 in)
    Camera Weight 855 g (30.2 oz) 800 g (28.2 oz)

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