Canon SX10 vs T2i
The Canon PowerShot SX10 IS and the Canon EOS Rebel T2i (labelled Canon 550D in some countries) are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2008 and February 2010. The SX10 is a fixed lens compact, while the T2i is a DSLR. The cameras are based on a 1/2.3-inch (SX10) and an APS-C (T2i) sensor. The SX10 has a resolution of 10 megapixels, whereas the T2i provides 17.9 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 EOS Rebel T2i? 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.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon SX10 and the Canon T2i 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.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon T2i is notably larger (17 percent) than the Canon SX10. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the SX10 nor the T2i are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the SX10 has a lens built in, whereas the T2i 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 T2i and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. 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.
|1.||Canon SX10||123 mm||88 mm||87 mm||600 g||..||n||Sep 2008||399|
|2.||Canon T2i||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||530 g||440||n||Feb 2010||699|
|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 T6s||132 mm||101 mm||78 mm||565 g||440||n||Feb 2015||649|
|7.||Canon T5i||133 mm||100 mm||79 mm||580 g||440||n||Mar 2013||649|
|8.||Canon SX50||123 mm||87 mm||106 mm||595 g||315||n||Sep 2012||429|
|9.||Canon T4i||133 mm||100 mm||79 mm||575 g||440||n||Jun 2012||849|
|10.||Canon SX40||123 mm||92 mm||108 mm||600 g||380||n||Sep 2011||429|
|11.||Canon T3i||133 mm||100 mm||80 mm||570 g||440||n||Feb 2011||599|
|12.||Canon SX30||123 mm||92 mm||108 mm||601 g||370||n||Sep 2010||429|
|13.||Canon SX20||123 mm||88 mm||87 mm||600 g||..||n||Aug 2009||399|
|14.||Canon T1i||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||520 g||400||n||Mar 2009||799|
|15.||Canon SX1||128 mm||88 mm||88 mm||615 g||..||n||Sep 2008||599|
|16.||Canon XS||126 mm||98 mm||65 mm||502 g||500||n||Jun 2008||449|
|17.||Nikon B600||122 mm||82 mm||99 mm||500 g||280||n||Jan 2019||349|
|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 listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The SX10 was launched at a lower price than the T2i, despite having a lens built in. 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.
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. 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.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon SX10 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Canon T2i an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the T2i is 1086 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 1.6. The sensor in the SX10 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the T2i offers a 3:2 aspect.
With 17.9MP, the T2i offers a higher resolution than the SX10 (10MP), but the T2i nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.31μm versus 1.67μm for the SX10) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the T2i is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 4 months) than the SX10, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. 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 T2i implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the T2i for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 25.9 x 17.3 inches or 65.8 x 43.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 20.7 x 13.8 inches or 52.7 x 35.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 17.3 x 11.5 inches or 43.9 x 29.3 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 EOS Rebel T2i are ISO 100 to ISO 6400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-12800.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
| DXO |
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the T2i provides a better video resolution than the SX10. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/30p, while the SX10 is limited to 480/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the SX10 has an electronic viewfinder (202k dots), while the T2i has an optical one. Both systems have their advantages, with the electronic viewfinder making it possible to project supplementary shooting information into the framing view, whereas the optical viewfinder offers lag-free viewing and a very clear framing image. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon SX10 and Canon T2i in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
The SX10 writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the T2i 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 EOS Rebel T2i and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
It is notable that the T2i has a microphone port, which can help to improve the quality of audio recordings by attaching an external microphone. The SX10 does not feature such a mic input.
Both the SX10 and the T2i have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The SX10 was replaced by the Canon SX20, while the T2i was followed by the Canon T3i. 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? Which of the two cameras – the Canon SX10 or the Canon T2i – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX10 IS:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
- More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
- Ready to shoot: Comes with a built-in lens, while the T2i requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (123x88mm vs 129x98mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in September 2008).
Advantages of the Canon EOS Rebel T2i:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (17.9 vs 10MP), which boosts linear resolution by 37%.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better image quality: Is equipped with a larger and more technologically advanced sensor.
- Richer colors: The sensor size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger sensor captures a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger sensor produces good images even in poorly lit environments.
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (1080/30p vs 480/30p).
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
- 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 (1040k vs 230k dots).
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/3200s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3.7 vs 0.7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Makes it possible to change lenses and thus to use specialty optics.
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (1 year and 4 months) more recently.
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the T2i is the clear winner of the contest (15 : 8 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon SX10 and the Canon T2i place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom 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 incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the SX10 or the T2i perform in practice. 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 expert reviews 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 T2i||..||+ +||77/100||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2010||699|
|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 T6s||5/5||+||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2015||649|
|7.||Canon T5i||..||..||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2013||649|
|8.||Canon SX50||3/5||+ +||72/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||429|
|9.||Canon T4i||4/5||+ +||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2012||849|
|10.||Canon SX40||..||+||..||4.5/5||4/5||Sep 2011||429|
|11.||Canon T3i||3/5||o||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2011||599|
|12.||Canon SX30||3/5||+ +||..||3.5/5||4/5||Sep 2010||429|
|13.||Canon SX20||..||+ +||73/100||..||4/5||Aug 2009||399|
|14.||Canon T1i||..||+ +||74/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2009||799|
|15.||Canon SX1||..||+ +||+||..||3.5/5||Sep 2008||599|
|16.||Canon XS||..||82/100||+ +||3.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2008||449|
|17.||Nikon B600||..||+||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||349|
|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 rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
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.
Specifications: Canon SX10 vs Canon T2i
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 T2i|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||28-560mm f/2.8-5.7||Canon EF mount lenses|
|Launch Date||September 2008||February 2010|
|Launch Price||USD 399||USD 699|
|Sensor Specs||Canon SX10||Canon T2i|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||22.3 x 14.9 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||332.27 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||26.8 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||10 Megapixels||17.9 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3648 x 2736 pixels||5184 x 3456 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.67 μm||4.31 μm|
|Pixel Density||35.55 MP/cm2||5.39 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||480/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 1,600 ISO||100 - 6,400 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 3,200 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||66|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||22.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||11.5|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||784|
|Screen Specs||Canon SX10||Canon T2i|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||95%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||202k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.5inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon SX10||Canon T2i|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||0.7 shutter flaps/s||3.7 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 T2i|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Canon SX10||Canon T2i|
123 x 88 x 87 mm
(4.8 x 3.5 x 3.4 in)
129 x 98 x 62 mm
(5.1 x 3.9 x 2.4 in)
|Camera Weight||600 g (21.2 oz)||530 g (18.7 oz)|
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