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Canon SX530 vs Sony HX400V

The Canon PowerShot SX530 HS and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in January 2015 and February 2014. Both the SX530 and the HX400V are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 15.9 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 20.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon SX530
versus
Sony HX400V
Canon SX530   Sony HX400V
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
24-1200mm f/3.4-6.5 24-1200mm f/2.8-6.3
15.9 MP – 1/2.3" sensor 20.2 MP – 1/2.3" sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 100-3,200 ISO 80-3,200 (80 - 12,800)
No viewfinder, LCD framing Electronic viewfinder (210k dots)
3.0" LCD – 461k dots 3.0" LCD – 921k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Tilting screen (no touchscreen)
1.6 shutter flaps per second 10 shutter flaps per second
210 shots per battery charge300 shots per battery charge
120 x 82 x 92 mm, 442 g 130 x 93 x 103 mm, 660 g
Canon SX530:
Check Ebay offers
Sony HX400V:
Check Amazon price

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot SX530 HS and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V? 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 SX530 and the Sony HX400V is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Canon SX530 vs Sony HX400V
Compare SX530 versus HX400V top
Comparison SX530 or HX400V rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony HX400V is notably larger (23 percent) than the Canon SX530. Moreover, the HX400V is substantially heavier (49 percent) than the SX530. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the SX530 nor the HX400V are weather-sealed.

Concerning battery life, the SX530 gets 210 shots out of its NB-6LH battery, while the HX400V can take 300 images on a single charge of its NP-BX1 power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. 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.

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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 SX530 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 442 g 210 n Jan 2015 429i
2.
 
Sony HX400V 130 mm 93 mm 103 mm 660 g 300 n Feb 2014 499 i
3.
 
Canon T6 129 mm 101 mm 78 mm 485 g 500 n Mar 2016 449i
4.
 
Canon SX540 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 442 g 205 n Jan 2016 399 i
5.
 
Canon SX720 110 mm 64 mm 36 mm 270 g 250 n Feb 2016 379i
6.
 
Canon SX520 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 441 g 210 n Jul 2014 399i
7.
 
Canon SX700 113 mm 66 mm 35 mm 269 g 250 n Feb 2014 349i
8.
 
Canon SX60 128 mm 93 mm 114 mm 650 g 340 n Sep 2014 549i
9.
 
Canon T5 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449i
10.
 
Nikon L840 113 mm 78 mm 96 mm 538 g 590 n Feb 2015 299i
11.
 
Panasonic FZ100 124 mm 82 mm 92 mm 540 g 410 n Jul 2010 499i
12.
 
Sony HX350 130 mm 93 mm 103 mm 652 g 300 n Dec 2016 449 i
13.
 
Sony HX90V 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 245 g 360 n Apr 2015 429 i
14.
 
Sony H400 130 mm 95 mm 122 mm 628 g 300 n Feb 2014 319 i
15.
 
Sony H300 128 mm 89 mm 92 mm 590 g 350 n Feb 2014 219 i
Note: 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. The SX530 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 14 percent) than the HX400V, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. 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.

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 more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras 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.

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

Canon SX530 and Sony HX400V sensor measures

While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the HX400V offers a higher resolution of 20.2 megapixels, compared with 15.9 MP of the SX530. This megapixels advantage translates into a 13 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the HX400V has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.18μm versus 1.33μm for the SX530). Moreover, it should be noted, that the SX530 is a somewhat more recent model (by 10 months) than the HX400V, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of individual pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Sony HX400V implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the HX400V for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 25.9 x 19.4 inches or 65.8 x 49.4 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 20.7 x 15.6 inches or 52.7 x 39.5 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 17.3 x 13 inches or 43.9 x 32.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon SX530 are 23 x 17.3 inches or 58.5 x 43.9 cm for good quality, 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.8 x 35.1 cm for very good quality, and 15.4 x 11.5 inches or 39 x 29.3 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon PowerShot SX530 HS has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V are ISO 80 to ISO 3200, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-12800.

SX530 versus HX400V 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 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 SX530 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p20.211.671247
2.
 
Sony HX400V 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p20.111.462945
3.
 
Canon T6 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p23.612.9149779
4.
 
Canon SX540 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p20.311.780648
5.
 
Canon SX720 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p20.311.881748
6.
 
Canon SX520 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p20.111.567246
7.
 
Canon SX700 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60p20.111.462945
8.
 
Canon SX60 1/2.3 14.2 4608 30721080/60p19.210.812739
9.
 
Canon T5 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463
10.
 
Nikon L840 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60i20.211.672147
11.
 
Panasonic FZ100 1/2.3 14.0 4320 32401080/60i19.410.730639
12.
 
Sony HX350 1/2.3 19.9 5152 38641080/60p20.511.989649
13.
 
Sony HX90V 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36721080/60p20.211.673847
14.
 
Sony H400 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/30p20.111.463045
15.
 
Sony H300 1/2.3 19.9 5152 3864720/30p20.111.463045
Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.

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 HX400V provides a faster frame rate than the SX530. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the HX400V has an electronic viewfinder (210k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the SX530 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon SX530, the Sony HX400V, and comparable cameras.

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Core Features
    Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Specifications
(inch/000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Max
Shutter
Speed *
Max
Shutter
Flaps *
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
1.
 
Canon SX530none n3.0 / 461 fixed n 1/2000s 1.6/s Y Y
2.
 
Sony HX400V210 n3.0 / 921 tilting n 1/4000s 10.0/s Y Y
3.
 
Canon T6optical n3.0 / 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
4.
 
Canon SX540none n3.0 / 461 fixed n 1/2000s 5.9/s Y Y
5.
 
Canon SX720none n3.0 / 922 fixed n 1/3200s 5.9/s Y Y
6.
 
Canon SX520none n3.0 / 461 fixed n 1/2000s 1.6/s Y Y
7.
 
Canon SX700none n3.0 / 922 fixed n 1/3200s 8.5/s Y Y
8.
 
Canon SX60922 n3.0 / 922 swivel n 1/2000s 6.4/s Y Y
9.
 
Canon T5optical n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
10.
 
Nikon L840none n3.0 / 921 tilting n 1/4000s 7.4/s Y Y
11.
 
Panasonic FZ100202 n3.0 / 460 swivel n 1/2000s 11.0/s Y Y
12.
 
Sony HX350202 n3.0 / 922 tilting n 1/4000s 10.0/s Y Y
13.
 
Sony HX90V638 n3.0 / 921 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0/s Y Y
14.
 
Sony H400210 n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/2000s 0.7/s Y Y
15.
 
Sony H300none n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/1500s 0.8/s Y Y
Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.

Both the SX530 and the HX400V have zoom lenses built in. The SX530 has a 24-1200mm f/3.4-6.5 optic and the HX400V offers a 24-1200mm f/2.8-6.3 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). The HX400V offers the faster maximum aperture.

The SX530 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the HX400V uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards.

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 SX530 HS and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V 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
Mic / Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
1.
 
Canon SX530-stereo / mono--mini2.0YY-
2.
 
Sony HX400VYstereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
3.
 
Canon T6Ymono / mono--mini2.0YY-
4.
 
Canon SX540-stereo / mono--mini2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon SX720-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
6.
 
Canon SX520-stereo / mono--mini2.0---
7.
 
Canon SX700-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
8.
 
Canon SX60Ystereo / monoY-mini2.0YY-
9.
 
Canon T5Ymono / mono--mini2.0---
10.
 
Nikon L840-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
11.
 
Panasonic FZ100Ystereo / mono--mini2.0---
12.
 
Sony HX350-stereo / mono--micro2.0---
13.
 
Sony HX90V-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
14.
 
Sony H400-mono / mono--micro2.0Y--
15.
 
Sony H300-mono / mono--micro2.0Y--

It is notable that the HX400V has a hotshoe, which makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun. The SX530 does not feature such an accessory-socket.

Travel and landscape photographers will find it useful that the HX400V has an internal geolocalization sensor and can record GPS coordinates in its EXIF data.

The HX400V is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Sony. In contrast, the SX530 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the SX530 was succeeded by the Canon SX540. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Sony websites.

Review summary

So how do things add up? Is the Canon SX530 better than the Sony HX400V or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX530 HS:

  • More compact: Is smaller (120x82mm vs 130x93mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 218g or 33 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced segment (14 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 10 months after the HX400V).

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Arguments in favor of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX400V:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (20.2 vs 15.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 13%.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/30p).
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (921k vs 461k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 vs 1.6 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.8 vs f/3.4).
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (300 versus 210) out of a single battery charge.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • Easier geotagging: Features an internal GPS sensor to log localization data.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2014).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the HX400V is the clear winner of the contest (12 : 4 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.

SX530 04:12 HX400V

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon SX530 and the Sony HX400V 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 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 SX530 or the HX400V 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.

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 (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], 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 
 DCW 
 score 
 DPR 
 score 
 EPZ 
 score 
 PB 
 score 
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Canon SX530..+ +....4/54/5 Jan 2015 429i
2.
 
Sony HX400V4/5+ +....4/54/5 Feb 2014 499 i
3.
 
Canon T64/5o4/573/1004/54/5 Mar 2016 449i
4.
 
Canon SX540............ Jan 2016 399 i
5.
 
Canon SX720..+....4/54.5/5 Feb 2016 379i
6.
 
Canon SX520..+....3.5/53.5/5 Jul 2014 399i
7.
 
Canon SX700..+ +....4/54/5 Feb 2014 349i
8.
 
Canon SX603/5+ +..75/1004/54.5/5 Sep 2014 549i
9.
 
Canon T53/5+....4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449i
10.
 
Nikon L840..+ +....3.5/54/5 Feb 2015 299i
11.
 
Panasonic FZ100..+....4.5/54.5/5 Jul 2010 499i
12.
 
Sony HX350..........4/5 Dec 2016 449 i
13.
 
Sony HX90V4/5+ +....4/54.5/5 Apr 2015 429 i
14.
 
Sony H400..o....3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2014 319 i
15.
 
Sony H300..+....4.5/54/5 Feb 2014 219 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, 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 SX530:
Check Ebay offers
Sony HX400V:
Check Amazon price

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. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.

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    Specifications: Canon SX530 vs Sony HX400V

    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 SX530 Sony HX400V
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 24-1200mm f/3.4-6.5 24-1200mm f/2.8-6.3
    Launch Date January 2015 February 2014
    Launch Price USD 429 USD 499
    Sensor Specs Canon SX530 Sony HX400V
    Sensor Technology BSI-CMOS BSI-CMOS
    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
    Crop Factor 5.6x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 15.9 Megapixels 20.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4608 x 3456 pixels 5184 x 3888 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 1.33 μm 1.18 μm
    Pixel Density 56.73 MP/cm2 71.80 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 3,200 ISO 80 - 3,200 ISO
    ISO Boost no Enhancement 80 - 12,800 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 4+ BIONZ X
    Screen Specs Canon SX530 Sony HX400V
    Viewfinder Type no viewfinder Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Resolution 210k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 461k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Tilting screen
    Shooting Specs Canon SX530 Sony HX400V
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 1.6 shutter flaps/s 10 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Built-in Flash Built-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards MS or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no no
    Connectivity Specs Canon SX530 Sony HX400V
    External Flash no Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in NFC built-in
    Geotagging no internal GPS GPS built-in
    Body Specs Canon SX530 Sony HX400V
    Battery Type NB-6LH NP-BX1
    Battery Life (CIPA)210 shots per charge300 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 120 x 82 x 92 mm
    (4.7 x 3.2 x 3.6 in)
    130 x 93 x 103 mm
    (5.1 x 3.7 x 4.1 in)
    Camera Weight 442 g (15.6 oz) 660 g (23.3 oz)
    Canon SX530:
    Check Ebay offers
    Sony HX400V:
    Check Amazon price

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