Canon SX10 vs SX50
The Canon PowerShot SX10 IS and the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in September 2008 and September 2012. Both the SX10 and the SX50 are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The SX10 has a resolution of 10 megapixels, whereas the SX50 provides 12 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 PowerShot SX10 IS and the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS? 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 SX10 and the Canon SX50. 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.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon SX50 is somewhat smaller (1 percent) than the Canon SX10. Moreover, the SX50 is slightly lighter (1 percent) than the SX10. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the SX10 nor the SX50 are weather-sealed.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. 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 SX10||123 mm||88 mm||87 mm||600 g||..||n||Sep 2008||399|
|2.||Canon SX50||123 mm||87 mm||106 mm||595 g||315||n||Sep 2012||429|
|3.||Canon SX740||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||299 g||265||n||Jul 2018||399|
|4.||Canon SX70||127 mm||91 mm||117 mm||608 g||325||n||Sep 2018||549|
|5.||Canon SX730||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||300 g||250||n||Apr 2017||399|
|6.||Canon SX60||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549|
|7.||Canon S120||100 mm||59 mm||29 mm||217 g||230||n||Aug 2013||449|
|8.||Canon G15||107 mm||76 mm||40 mm||352 g||350||n||Sep 2012||499|
|9.||Canon SX40||123 mm||92 mm||108 mm||600 g||380||n||Sep 2011||429|
|10.||Canon SX30||123 mm||92 mm||108 mm||601 g||370||n||Sep 2010||429|
|11.||Canon SX20||123 mm||88 mm||87 mm||600 g||..||n||Aug 2009||399|
|12.||Canon SX1||128 mm||88 mm||88 mm||615 g||..||n||Sep 2008||599|
|13.||Canon XS||126 mm||98 mm||65 mm||502 g||500||n||Jun 2008||449|
|14.||Nikon B600||122 mm||82 mm||99 mm||500 g||280||n||Jan 2019||349|
|15.||Panasonic FZ150||124 mm||82 mm||92 mm||528 g||410||n||Aug 2011||499|
|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 SX10 was somewhat cheaper (by 7 percent) than the SX50 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
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. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature a 1/2.3-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 5.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the SX50 offers a higher resolution of 12 megapixels, compared with 10 MP of the SX10. This megapixels advantage translates into a 10 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the SX50 has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.53μm versus 1.67μm for the SX10). However, it should be noted that the SX50 is much more recent (by 4 years) than the SX10, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that compensate for the smaller pixel size. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the SX10 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Canon SX50 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the SX50 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 20 x 15 inches or 50.8 x 38.1 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 16 x 12 inches or 40.6 x 30.5 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 13.3 x 10 inches or 33.9 x 25.4 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon SX10 are 18.2 x 13.7 inches or 46.3 x 34.7 cm for good quality, 14.6 x 10.9 inches or 37.1 x 27.8 cm for very good quality, and 12.2 x 9.1 inches or 30.9 x 23.2 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Canon PowerShot SX10 IS has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1600, which can be extended to ISO 100-3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS are ISO 80 to ISO 6400 (no boost).
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
| DXO |
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the SX50 provides a better video resolution than the SX10. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/24p, while the SX10 is limited to 480/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The SX10 and the SX50 are similar in the sense that both feature an electronic viewfinder, which is helpful when framing images in bright sunlight. Moreover, their viewfinders offer an identical resolution of 202k dots. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon SX10, the Canon SX50, and comparable cameras.
Both the SX10 and the SX50 have zoom lenses built in. The SX10 has a 28-560mm f/2.8-5.7 optic and the SX50 offers a 24-1200mm f/3.4-6.5 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the SX50 provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the SX10. The SX10 offers the faster maximum aperture.
The SX10 writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the SX50 uses SDXC 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 PowerShot SX10 IS and Canon PowerShot SX50 HS and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
Both the SX10 and the SX50 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The SX10 was replaced by the Canon SX20, while the SX50 was followed by the Canon SX60. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.
So what is the bottom line? Is the Canon SX10 better than the Canon SX50 or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX10 IS:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/3200s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.8 vs f/3.4).
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in September 2008).
Arguments in favor of the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (12 vs 10MP), which boosts linear resolution by 10%.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (1080/24p vs 480/30p).
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.5") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (461k vs 230k dots).
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (2.2 vs 0.7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- More modern: Reflects 4 years of technical progress since the SX10 launch.
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the SX50 is the clear winner of the contest (10 : 4 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon SX10 and the Canon SX50 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom 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 partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the SX10 or the SX50. 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 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.
|1.||Canon SX10||..||+ +||..||..||4/5||Sep 2008||399|
|2.||Canon SX50||3/5||+ +||72/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||429|
|3.||Canon SX740||..||+||..||4/5||4/5||Jul 2018||399|
|4.||Canon SX70||..||+ +||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Sep 2018||549|
|5.||Canon SX730||..||+||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||399|
|6.||Canon SX60||3/5||+ +||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549|
|7.||Canon S120||..||+ +||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||449|
|8.||Canon G15||4/5||+||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||499|
|9.||Canon SX40||..||+||..||4.5/5||4/5||Sep 2011||429|
|10.||Canon SX30||3/5||+ +||..||3.5/5||4/5||Sep 2010||429|
|11.||Canon SX20||..||+ +||73/100||..||4/5||Aug 2009||399|
|12.||Canon SX1||..||+ +||+||..||3.5/5||Sep 2008||599|
|13.||Canon XS||..||82/100||+ +||3.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2008||449|
|14.||Nikon B600||..||+||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||349|
|15.||Panasonic FZ150||3/5||+ +||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2011||499|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted 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. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, 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.
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.
Specifications: Canon SX10 vs Canon SX50
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 SX10||Canon SX50|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||28-560mm f/2.8-5.7||24-1200mm f/3.4-6.5|
|Launch Date||September 2008||September 2012|
|Launch Price||USD 399||USD 429|
|Sensor Specs||Canon SX10||Canon SX50|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1/2.3" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||6.17 x 4.55 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||28.0735 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||7.7 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||10 Megapixels||12 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3648 x 2736 pixels||4000 x 3000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.67 μm||1.53 μm|
|Pixel Density||35.55 MP/cm2||42.74 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||480/30p Video||1080/24p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 1,600 ISO||80 - 6,400 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 3,200 ISO||no Enhancement|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||47|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||20.3|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||11.2|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||179|
|Screen Specs||Canon SX10||Canon SX50|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||202k dots||202k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.5inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots||461k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Swivel screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon SX10||Canon SX50|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||0.7 shutter flaps/s||2.2 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDHC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon SX10||Canon SX50|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Canon SX10||Canon SX50|
123 x 88 x 87 mm
(4.8 x 3.5 x 3.4 in)
123 x 87 x 106 mm
(4.8 x 3.4 x 4.2 in)
|Camera Weight||600 g (21.2 oz)||595 g (21.0 oz)|
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