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Canon M10 vs Nikon 1 J4

The Canon EOS M10 and the Nikon 1 J4 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in October 2015 and April 2014. Both the M10 and the J4 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are based on an APS-C (M10) and an one-inch (J4) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 17.9 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 18.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon M10 versus Nikon 1 J4
Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
Mirrorless system camera Mirrorless system camera
Canon EF-M mount lenses Nikon 1 mount lenses
17.9 MP, APS-C Sensor 18.2 MP, 1" Sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 100-12,800 (100 - 25,600) ISO 160-12,800
No viewfinder, LCD framing No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 3.0 LCD, 1037k dots
Tilting touchscreen no rear screen
4.6 shutter flaps per second 60 shutter flaps per second
255 shots per battery charge300 shots per battery charge
108 x 67 x 35 mm, 301 g 100 x 60 x 29 mm, 232 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS M10 and the Nikon 1 J4? 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 M10 and the Nikon 1 J4 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 dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The M10 can be obtained in two different colors (black, white), while the J4 is available in four color-versions (black, silver, orange, white).

Size Canon M10 vs Nikon 1 J4
Compare M10 versus J4 top
Comparison M10 or J4 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon 1 J4 is notably smaller (17 percent) than the Canon M10. Moreover, the J4 is markedly lighter (23 percent) than the M10. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the M10 nor the J4 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. 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.

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, you can 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
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Canon M10 108 mm 67 mm 35 mm 301 g 255 n Oct 2015 499i
2.
 
Nikon 1 J4 100 mm 60 mm 29 mm 232 g 300 n Apr 2014 549i
3.
 
Canon M100 108 mm 67 mm 35 mm 302 g 295 n Aug 2017 499i
4.
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 106 mm 61 mm 42 mm 319 g 265 n Feb 2016 699i
5.
 
Canon M5 116 mm 89 mm 61 mm 427 g 295 n Sep 2016 979 i
6.
 
Canon G5 X 112 mm 76 mm 44 mm 353 g 210 n Oct 2015 799i
7.
 
Canon G9 X 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 209 g 220 n Oct 2015 529i
8.
 
Canon M3 111 mm 68 mm 44 mm 366 g 250 n Feb 2015 679i
9.
 
Canon 1200D 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449i
10.
 
Canon G7 X 103 mm 60 mm 40 mm 304 g 210 n Sep 2014 699i
11.
 
Canon 100D 117 mm 91 mm 69 mm 407 g 380 n Mar 2013 549i
12.
 
Canon M 109 mm 66 mm 32 mm 298 g 230 n Jul 2012 599i
13.
 
Nikon 1 J5 98 mm 60 mm 32 mm 231 g 250 n Apr 2015 399i
14.
 
Nikon 1 V3 111 mm 65 mm 33 mm 381 g 310 n Mar 2014 799i
15.
 
Panasonic G6 122 mm 85 mm 71 mm 390 g 340 n Apr 2013 599i
16.
 
Sony A5000 110 mm 63 mm 36 mm 269 g 420 n Jan 2014 449i
Notes: 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 M10 was somewhat cheaper (by 9 percent) than the J4 at launch, but both cameras fall into the same price category. 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 size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon M10 features an APS-C sensor and the Nikon 1 J4 an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the J4 is 65 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 2.7. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

In terms of underlying technology, both cameras are build around CMOS sensors.

Canon M10 and Nikon 1 J4 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the J4 offers a slightly higher resolution of 18.2 megapixels, compared with 17.9 MP of the M10. 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 2.52μm versus 4.31μm for the M10). Moreover, it should be noted that the M10 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 6 months) than the J4, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the J4 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The Canon EOS M10 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon 1 J4 are ISO 160 to ISO 12800 (no boost).

M10 versus J4 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. 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"). Of the two cameras under review, the M10 provides substantially higher image quality than the J4, with an overall score that is 12 points higher. This advantage is based on 1.4 bits higher color depth, 0.7 EV in additional dynamic range, and 0.8 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 M10 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.211.475365
2.
 
Nikon 1 J4 1-inch 18.2 5232 34881080/60p20.810.742653
3.
 
Canon M100 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
4.
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p........
5.
 
Canon M5 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.412.4126277
6.
 
Canon G5 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p........
7.
 
Canon G9 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.512.349563
8.
 
Canon M3 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.811.8116972
9.
 
Canon 1200D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463
10.
 
Canon G7 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p23.012.755671
11.
 
Canon 100D APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.384363
12.
 
Canon M APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.282765
13.
 
Nikon 1 J5 1-inch 20.7 5568 37124K/15p21.112.047965
14.
 
Nikon 1 V3 1-inch 18.2 5232 34881080/60p20.810.738452
15.
 
Panasonic G6 Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p21.311.563961
16.
 
Sony A5000 APS-C 19.8 5456 36321080/60i23.813.0108979

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 J4 provides a faster frame rate than the M10. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/30p.

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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The M10 and the J4 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon M10, the Nikon 1 J4, 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 M10none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 4.6 Y n
2.
 
Nikon 1 J4none n 3.0 1037 Fixed Y 1/4000s 60.0 Y n
3.
 
Canon M100none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.1 Y n
4.
 
Canon G7 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 8.0 Y Y
5.
 
Canon M52360 n 3.2 1620 tilting Y 1/4000s 9.0 Y n
6.
 
Canon G5 X2360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/2000s 5.9 Y Y
7.
 
Canon G9 Xnone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 6.0 Y Y
8.
 
Canon M3optional n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 4.2 Y n
9.
 
Canon 1200Doptical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
10.
 
Canon G7 Xnone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 6.5 Y Y
11.
 
Canon 100Doptical n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.9 Y n
12.
 
Canon Mnone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.3 n n
13.
 
Nikon 1 J5none n 3.0 1037 tilting Y 1/4000s 60.0 Y n
14.
 
Nikon 1 V3optional n 3.0 1037 tilting Y 1/4000s 60.0 Y n
15.
 
Panasonic G61440 n 3.0 1036 swivel Y 1/4000s 7.0 Y n
16.
 
Sony A5000none n 3.0 461 tilting n 1/4000s 3.5 Y n
The M10 has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the J4 does not have a selfie-screen.

The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the J4 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).

The M10 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the J4 uses micro SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.

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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 M10 and Nikon 1 J4 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 M10-stereomono--mini2.0YY-
2.
 
Nikon 1 J4-stereomono--mini2.0Y--
3.
 
Canon M100-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
4.
 
Canon G7 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon M5YstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
6.
 
Canon G5 XYstereomono--mini2.0YY-
7.
 
Canon G9 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
8.
 
Canon M3YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
9.
 
Canon 1200DYmonomono--mini2.0---
10.
 
Canon G7 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
11.
 
Canon 100DYmonomonoY-mini2.0---
12.
 
Canon MYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
13.
 
Nikon 1 J5-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
14.
 
Nikon 1 V3-stereomonoY-mini2.0Y--
15.
 
Panasonic G6YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
16.
 
Sony A5000-stereomono--micro2.0YY-

Both the M10 and the J4 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The J4 was replaced by the Nikon 1 J5, while the M10 was followed by the Canon M100. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Nikon websites.

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Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon M10 and the Nikon 1 J4? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS M10:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (12 points) in the DXO overall assessment.
  • Richer colors: Generates images with noticeably better colors (1.4 bits more color depth).
  • More dynamic range: Captures a larger spectrum of light and dark details (0.7 EV of extra DR).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Requires less light for good images (0.8 stops ISO advantage).
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 1 year and 6 months after the J4).

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Arguments in favor of the Nikon 1 J4:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/30p).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (60 vs 4.6 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
  • More compact: Is smaller (100x60mm vs 108x67mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 69g or 23 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (300 versus 255) out of a single battery charge.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in April 2014).

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the match-up finishes in a tie (8 points each). 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.

M10 08:08 J4

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon M10 and the Nikon 1 J4 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens 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 M10 or the J4. 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 M10........4/5 Oct 2015 499i
2.
 
Nikon 1 J43/5....4.5/54/5 Apr 2014 549i
3.
 
Canon M1003/5+..4/53.5/5 Aug 2017 499i
4.
 
Canon G7 X Mark II4.5/5+ +81/1004.5/54.5/5 Feb 2016 699i
5.
 
Canon M54/5+82/1004/54/5 Sep 2016 979 i
6.
 
Canon G5 X5/5+ +78/1004.5/54.5/5 Oct 2015 799i
7.
 
Canon G9 X3.5/5+ +..4.5/54.5/5 Oct 2015 529i
8.
 
Canon M34/5o75/1004.5/54/5 Feb 2015 679i
9.
 
Canon 1200D3/5+..4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449i
10.
 
Canon G7 X4/5+ +77/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2014 699i
11.
 
Canon 100D4/5+78/1004/54/5 Mar 2013 549i
12.
 
Canon M3/5+..4/54/5 Jul 2012 599i
13.
 
Nikon 1 J5......4.5/54.5/5 Apr 2015 399i
14.
 
Nikon 1 V33/5..76/1004.5/54/5 Mar 2014 799i
15.
 
Panasonic G64/5+ +..5/54.5/5 Apr 2013 599i
16.
 
Sony A50003/5+..4.5/54.5/5 Jan 2014 449i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted 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 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 M10:
Check Ebay offers
Nikon 1 J4:
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 make your choice using the following search menu. 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 M10 vs Nikon 1 J4

    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 M10 Nikon 1 J4
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF-M mount lenses Nikon 1 mount lenses
    Launch Date October 2015 April 2014
    Launch Price USD 499 USD 549
    Sensor Specs Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor 1" Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 13.2 x 8.8 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 116.16 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 15.9 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 2.7x
    Sensor Resolution 17.9 Megapixels 18.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5184 x 3456 pixels 5232 x 3488 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.31 μm 2.52 μm
    Pixel Density 5.39 MP/cm2 15.71 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 12,800 ISO 160 - 12,800 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 25,600 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor DIGIC 6 EXPEED 4
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 65 53
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 22.2 20.8
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.4 10.7
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 753 426
    Screen Specs Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
    Viewfinder Type no viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Magnification
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 1037k dots
    LCD Attachment Tilting screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
    Focus System On-Sensor Phase-detect On-Sensor Phase-detect
    Continuous Shooting 4.6 shutter flaps/s 60 shutter flaps/s
    Electronic Shutterno E-Shutterup to 1/16000s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards micro or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
    External Flash no Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in no NFC
    Body Specs Canon M10 Nikon 1 J4
    Battery Type LP-E12 EN-EL22
    Battery Life (CIPA)255 shots per charge300 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 108 x 67 x 35 mm
    (4.3 x 2.6 x 1.4 in)
    100 x 60 x 29 mm
    (3.9 x 2.4 x 1.1 in)
    Camera Weight 301 g (10.6 oz) 232 g (8.2 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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