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Canon G15 vs T3

The Canon PowerShot G15 and the Canon EOS Rebel T3 (labelled Canon 1100D in some countries) are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in September 2012 and February 2011. The G15 is a fixed lens compact, while the T3 is a DSLR. The cameras are based on a 1/1.7-inch (G15) and an APS-C (T3) sensor. The G15 has a resolution of 12 megapixels, whereas the T3 provides 12.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon G15 versus Canon T3
Canon G15 Canon T3
Fixed lens compact camera Digital single lens reflex
28-140mm f/1.8-2.8 Canon EF mount lenses
12 MP, 1/1.7" Sensor 12.2 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/24p Video 720/30p Video
ISO 80-12,800 ISO 100-6,400
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0 LCD, 922k dots 2.7 LCD, 230k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
2.1 shutter flaps per second 3 shutter flaps per second
350 shots per battery charge700 shots per battery charge
107 x 76 x 40 mm, 352 g 130 x 100 x 78 mm, 495 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot G15 and the Canon EOS Rebel T3? 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 G15 and the Canon T3. 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 G15 vs Canon T3
Compare G15 versus T3 top
Comparison G15 or T3 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon T3 is considerably larger (60 percent) than the Canon G15. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G15 nor the T3 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the G15 has a lens built in, whereas the T3 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 T3 and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the G15 gets 350 shots out of its NB-10L battery, while the T3 can take 700 images on a single charge of its LP-E10 power pack.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.

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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 G15 107 mm 76 mm 40 mm 352 g 350 n Sep 2012 499 i
2.
 
Canon T3 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 495 g 700 n Feb 2011 449 i
3.
 
Canon T100 129 mm 102 mm 77 mm 436 g 500 n Feb 2018 399 i
4.
 
Canon SX60 128 mm 93 mm 114 mm 650 g 340 n Sep 2014 549 i
5.
 
Canon T5 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449 i
6.
 
Canon G16 109 mm 76 mm 40 mm 356 g 360 n Aug 2013 549 i
7.
 
Canon S120 100 mm 59 mm 29 mm 217 g 230 n Aug 2013 449 i
8.
 
Canon G1 X 117 mm 81 mm 65 mm 534 g 250 n Jan 2012 799 i
9.
 
Canon SX50 123 mm 87 mm 106 mm 595 g 315 n Sep 2012 429 i
10.
 
Canon T4i 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 n Jun 2012 849 i
11.
 
Canon G12 112 mm 76 mm 48 mm 401 g 370 n Sep 2010 499 i
12.
 
Canon XS 126 mm 98 mm 65 mm 502 g 500 n Jun 2008 449 i
13.
 
Fujifilm X20 117 mm 70 mm 57 mm 353 g 270 n Jan 2013 599 i
14.
 
Fujifilm X10 117 mm 70 mm 57 mm 350 g 270 n Sep 2011 599 i
15.
 
Nikon P7800 119 mm 78 mm 50 mm 399 g 350 n Sep 2013 549 i
16.
 
Panasonic LX7 111 mm 68 mm 46 mm 298 g 330 n Jul 2012 499 i
17.
 
Panasonic FZ150 124 mm 82 mm 92 mm 528 g 410 n Aug 2011 499 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 manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. 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.

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Sensor comparison

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 associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon G15 features a 1/1.7-inch sensor and the Canon T3 an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the T3 is 651 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 4.6 and 1.6. The sensor in the G15 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the T3 offers a 3:2 aspect.

In terms of chip-set technology, the G15 uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 5) than the T3 (DIGIC 4), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon G15 and Canon T3 sensor measures

With 12.2MP, the T3 offers a higher resolution than the G15 (12MP), but the T3 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 5.15μm versus 1.89μm for the G15) due to its larger sensor. However, the G15 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 7 months) than the T3, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.

The Canon PowerShot G15 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 80 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon EOS Rebel T3 are ISO 100 to ISO 6400 (no boost).

G15 versus T3 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"). Of the two cameras under consideration, the T3 offers substantially better image quality than the G15 (overall score 16 points higher). The advantage is based on 2 bits higher color depth, 0.5 EV of lower dynamic range, and 2.2 stops in additional low light sensitivity. 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 G15 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/24p19.911.5165 46
2.
 
Canon T3 APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.0755 62
3.
 
Canon T100 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.4695 63
4.
 
Canon SX60 1/2.3 14.2 4608 30721080/60p19.210.8127 39
5.
 
Canon T5 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.3724 63
6.
 
Canon G16 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.7230 54
7.
 
Canon S120 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.311.9246 56
8.
 
Canon G1 X 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 32641080/24p21.710.8644 60
9.
 
Canon SX50 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30001080/24p20.311.2179 47
10.
 
Canon T4i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.2722 62
11.
 
Canon G12 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/24p20.411.2161 47
12.
 
Canon XS APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none...... ..
13.
 
Fujifilm X20 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/60p...... ..
14.
 
Fujifilm X10 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/30p20.511.3245 50
15.
 
Nikon P7800 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/30p21.211.7200 54
16.
 
Panasonic LX7 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p20.711.7147 50
17.
 
Panasonic FZ150 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30001080/60p19.410.9132 40

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the G15 provides a higher video resolution than the T3. It can shoot video footage at 1080/24p, while the T3 is limited to 720/30p.

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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The G15 and the T3 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 G15 and Canon T3 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 G15optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.1 Y Y
2.
 
Canon T3optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
3.
 
Canon T100optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
4.
 
Canon SX60922 n 3.0 922 swivel n 1/2000s 6.4 Y Y
5.
 
Canon T5optical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
6.
 
Canon G16optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.2 Y Y
7.
 
Canon S120none n 3.0 922 fixed Y 1/2000s 12.1 Y Y
8.
 
Canon G1 Xoptical n 3.0 922 Swivel n 1/4000s 1.9 Y Y
9.
 
Canon SX50202 n 3.0 461 swivel n 1/2000s 2.2 Y Y
10.
 
Canon T4ioptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
11.
 
Canon G12optical n 2.8 461 swivel n 1/4000s 1.1 Y Y
12.
 
Canon XSoptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
13.
 
Fujifilm X20optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 1/4000s 12.0 Y Y
14.
 
Fujifilm X10optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y
15.
 
Nikon P7800921 n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 8.0 Y Y
16.
 
Panasonic LX7optional n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y
17.
 
Panasonic FZ150202 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/2000s 12.0 Y Y

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G15 and the T3 write their files to SDXC 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 PowerShot G15 and Canon EOS Rebel T3 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 G15Ystereomono--mini2.0---
2.
 
Canon T3Ystereomono--mini2.0---
3.
 
Canon T100Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-
4.
 
Canon SX60YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon T5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
6.
 
Canon G16Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--
7.
 
Canon S120-stereomono--mini2.0Y--
8.
 
Canon G1 XYstereomono--mini2.0---
9.
 
Canon SX50Ystereomono--mini2.0---
10.
 
Canon T4iYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
11.
 
Canon G12Ystereomono--mini2.0---
12.
 
Canon XSY-----2.0---
13.
 
Fujifilm X20Ystereomono--micro2.0---
14.
 
Fujifilm X10Ystereomono--mini2.0---
15.
 
Nikon P7800YstereomonoY-mini2.0---
16.
 
Panasonic LX7Ystereomono--mini2.0---
17.
 
Panasonic FZ150Ystereo---mini2.0---

Both the G15 and the T3 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The T3 was replaced by the Canon T5, while the G15 was followed by the Canon G16. 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 how do things add up? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon G15 and the Canon T3? Which camera is better? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot G15:

  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 5 vs DIGIC 4).
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (1080/24p vs 720/30p).
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (922k vs 230k dots).
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with a built-in lens, while the T3 requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (107x76mm vs 130x100mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a built-in lens (unlike the T3).
  • Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 1 year and 7 months after the T3).


Advantages of the Canon EOS Rebel T3:

  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (16 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
  • Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (2 bits more color depth).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (2.2 stops ISO advantage).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3 vs 2.1 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More flexible: Makes it possible to change lenses and thus to use specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (700 versus 350) out of a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2011).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the G15 emerges as the winner of the contest (9 : 7 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.

G15 09:07 T3

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon G15 and the Canon T3 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best DSLR Camera listings 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 partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the G15 or the T3. 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 where reviews by experts come in. 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 G154/5+76/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 499 i
2.
 
Canon T3..80/10069/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449 i
3.
 
Canon T100..o..3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 399 i
4.
 
Canon SX603/5+ +75/1004/54.5/5 Sep 2014 549 i
5.
 
Canon T53/5+..4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449 i
6.
 
Canon G164/5+..4.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i
7.
 
Canon S120..+ +..4.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 449 i
8.
 
Canon G1 X5/5+76/1004/54.5/5 Jan 2012 799 i
9.
 
Canon SX503/5+ +72/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 429 i
10.
 
Canon T4i4/5+ +77/1004.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849 i
11.
 
Canon G124/5+73/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2010 499 i
12.
 
Canon XS..82/100+ +3.5/54.5/5 Jun 2008 449 i
13.
 
Fujifilm X204/5+ +77/1004.5/55/5 Jan 2013 599 i
14.
 
Fujifilm X10....76/1004/54.5/5 Sep 2011 599 i
15.
 
Nikon P78003/5....4/54.5/5 Sep 2013 549 i
16.
 
Panasonic LX73/5+ +75/1004/54.5/5 Jul 2012 499 i
17.
 
Panasonic FZ1503/5+ +76/1004/54.5/5 Aug 2011 499 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, 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 rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Canon G15:
Check Ebay offers
Canon T3:
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 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.

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    Specifications: Canon G15 vs Canon T3

    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 G15 Canon T3
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens 28-140mm f/1.8-2.8 Canon EF mount lenses
    Launch Date September 2012 February 2011
    Launch Price USD 499 USD 449
    Sensor Specs Canon G15 Canon T3
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format 1/1.7" Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 7.6 x 5.7 mm 22.0 x 14.7 mm
    Sensor Area 43.32 mm2 323.4 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 9.5 mm 26.5 mm
    Crop Factor 4.6x 1.6x
    Sensor Resolution 12 Megapixels 12.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4000 x 3000 pixels 4272 x 2848 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 1.89 μm 5.15 μm
    Pixel Density 27.70 MP/cm2 3.76 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/24p Video 720/30p Video
    ISO Setting 80 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 6,400 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 5 DIGIC 4
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 46 62
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 19.9 21.9
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.5 11.0
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 165 755
    Screen Specs Canon G15 Canon T3
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 80% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.50x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 2.7inch
    LCD Resolution 922k dots 230k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon G15 Canon T3
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 2.1 shutter flaps/s 3 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no no
    Connectivity Specs Canon G15 Canon T3
    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 G15 Canon T3
    Battery Type NB-10L LP-E10
    Battery Life (CIPA)350 shots per charge700 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 107 x 76 x 40 mm
    (4.2 x 3.0 x 1.6 in)
    130 x 100 x 78 mm
    (5.1 x 3.9 x 3.1 in)
    Camera Weight 352 g (12.4 oz) 495 g (17.5 oz)

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