Canon SX60 vs Nikon D70
The Canon PowerShot SX60 HS and the Nikon D70 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2014 and January 2004. The SX60 is a fixed lens compact, while the D70 is a DSLR. The cameras are based on a 1/2.3-inch (SX60) and an APS-C (D70) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 14.2 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 6 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Digital single lens reflex|
|21-1365mm f/3.4-6.5||Nikon F mount lenses|
|14.2 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor||6 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|1080/60p Video||no Video|
|ISO 100-3200 (100-6400)||ISO 200-1600|
|Electronic viewfinder (922k dots)||Optical viewfinder|
|3.0" LCD, 922k dots||1.8" LCD, 130k dots|
|Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|6.4 shutter flaps per second||3 shutter flaps per second|
|340 shots per battery charge||400 shots per battery charge|
|128 x 93 x 114 mm, 650 g||140 x 111 x 78 mm, 679 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot SX60 HS and the Nikon D70? 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 physical size and weight of the Canon SX60 and the Nikon D70 are illustrated 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.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D70 is notably larger (31 percent) than the Canon SX60. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the SX60 nor the D70 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the SX60 has a lens built in, whereas the D70 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 D70 and their specifications in the Nikon Lens Catalog.
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, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.
|Canon SX60»||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549||Canon SX60|
|Nikon D70«||140 mm||111 mm||78 mm||679 g||400||n||Jan 2004||999||Nikon D70|
|Canon SX70« »||127 mm||91 mm||117 mm||608 g||325||n||Sep 2018||549||Canon SX70|
|Canon G9 X« »||98 mm||58 mm||31 mm||209 g||220||n||Oct 2015||529||Canon G9 X|
|Canon XC10« »||125 mm||102 mm||122 mm||1040 g||..||n||Apr 2015||2,499||Canon XC10|
|Canon G1 X Mark II« »||116 mm||74 mm||66 mm||553 g||240||n||Feb 2014||799||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G16« »||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||n||Aug 2013||549||Canon G16|
|Canon G15« »||107 mm||76 mm||40 mm||352 g||350||n||Sep 2012||499||Canon G15|
|Canon SX50« »||123 mm||87 mm||106 mm||595 g||315||n||Sep 2012||429||Canon SX50|
|Canon 300D« »||142 mm||99 mm||72 mm||649 g||400||n||Aug 2003||899||Canon 300D|
|Fujifilm X20« »||117 mm||70 mm||57 mm||353 g||270||n||Jan 2013||599||Fujifilm X20|
|Nikon D80« »||132 mm||103 mm||77 mm||668 g||600||n||Aug 2006||999||Nikon D80|
|Nikon D50« »||133 mm||102 mm||76 mm||620 g||400||n||Apr 2005||749||Nikon D50|
|Nikon D70s« »||140 mm||111 mm||78 mm||679 g||500||n||Apr 2005||899||Nikon D70s|
|Nikon D100« »||144 mm||116 mm||81 mm||780 g||370||n||Feb 2002||1,999||Nikon D100|
|Panasonic FZ330« »||132 mm||92 mm||117 mm||691 g||380||Y||Jul 2015||599||Panasonic FZ330|
|Panasonic FZ200« »||125 mm||87 mm||110 mm||588 g||540||n||Jul 2012||599||Panasonic FZ200|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as 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 SX60 was launched at a lower price than the D70, 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.
The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon SX60 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Nikon D70 an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the D70 is 1221 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 1.5. The sensor in the SX60 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the D70 offers a 3:2 aspect.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Canon SX60 offers a higher resolution of 14.2 megapixels, compared with 6 MP of the Nikon D70. 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 1.40μm versus 7.85μm for the D70). However, it should be noted that the SX60 is much more recent (by 10 years and 7 months) than the D70, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the SX60 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Canon SX60 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the SX60 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 15.4 inch or 58.5 x 39 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 12.3 inch or 46.8 x 31.2 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.4 x 10.2 inch or 39 x 26 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon D70 are 15 x 10 inch or 38.2 x 25.4 cm for good quality, 12 x 8 inch or 30.6 x 20.3 cm for very good quality, and 10 x 6.7 inch or 25.5 x 16.9 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Canon PowerShot SX60 HS has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200, which can be extended to ISO 100-6400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D70 are ISO 200 to ISO 1600 (no boost).
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. 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. Of the two cameras under consideration, the D70 offers substantially better image quality than the SX60 (overall score 11 points higher). The advantage is based on 1.2 bits higher color depth, 0.5 EV of lower dynamic range, and 2.1 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.
|Canon SX60||1/2.3||14.2||4608||3072||1080/60p||19.2||10.8||127||39||Canon SX60|
|Nikon D70||APS-C||6.0||3008||2000||none||20.4||10.3||529||50||Nikon D70|
|Canon SX70||1/2.3||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Canon SX70|
|Canon G9 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||21.5||12.3||495||63||Canon G9 X|
|Canon XC10||1-inch||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Canon XC10|
|Canon G1 X Mark II||1.5-inch||13.0||4160||3120||1080/30p||21.5||10.8||581||58||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G16||1/1.7||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||21.0||11.7||230||54||Canon G16|
|Canon G15||1/1.7||12.0||4000||3000||1080/24p||19.9||11.5||165||46||Canon G15|
|Canon SX50||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/24p||20.3||11.2||179||47||Canon SX50|
|Canon 300D||APS-C||6.3||3072||2048||none||21.0||10.8||544||55||Canon 300D|
|Fujifilm X20||2/3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||..||..||..||..||Fujifilm X20|
|Nikon D80||APS-C||10.0||3872||2592||none||22.1||11.2||524||61||Nikon D80|
|Nikon D50||APS-C||6.0||3008||2000||none||20.9||10.8||560||55||Nikon D50|
|Nikon D70s||APS-C||6.0||3008||2000||none||20.4||10.3||529||50||Nikon D70s|
|Nikon D100||APS-C||6.0||3008||2000||none||..||..||..||..||Nikon D100|
|Panasonic FZ330||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||19.3||11.0||97||38||Panasonic FZ330|
|Panasonic FZ200||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||19.1||10.8||114||37||Panasonic FZ200|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The SX60 indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the D70 does not. The highest resolution format that the SX60 can use is 1080/60p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the SX60 has an electronic viewfinder (922k dots), while the D70 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 adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Canon SX60 and Nikon D70 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Canon SX60||922||n||3.0||922||swivel||n||1/2000s||6.4||Y||Y||Canon SX60|
|Nikon D70||optical||n||1.8||130||fixed||n||1/8000s||3.0||Y||n||Nikon D70|
|Canon SX70||2360||n||3.0||922||swivel||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Canon SX70|
|Canon G9 X||none||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||6.0||Y||Y||Canon G9 X|
|Canon XC10||none||n||3.0||1030||tilting||Y||1/2000s||3.8||n||Y||Canon XC10|
|Canon G1 X Mark II||optional||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||5.2||Y||Y||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G16||optical||n||3.0||922||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.2||Y||Y||Canon G16|
|Canon G15||optical||n||3.0||922||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.1||Y||Y||Canon G15|
|Canon SX50||202||n||3.0||461||swivel||n||1/2000s||2.2||Y||Y||Canon SX50|
|Canon 300D||optical||n||1.8||118||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5||Y||n||Canon 300D|
|Fujifilm X20||optical||n||2.8||460||fixed||n||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Fujifilm X20|
|Nikon D80||optical||n||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Nikon D80|
|Nikon D50||optical||n||2.0||130||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5||Y||n||Nikon D50|
|Nikon D70s||optical||n||2.0||130||fixed||n||1/8000s||3.0||Y||n||Nikon D70s|
|Nikon D100||optical||Y||1.8||118||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0||Y||n||Nikon D100|
|Panasonic FZ330||1440||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Panasonic FZ330|
|Panasonic FZ200||1312||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Panasonic FZ200|
The SX60 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the D70 uses Compact Flash 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 SX60 HS and Nikon D70 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Canon SX60||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon SX60|
|Nikon D70||Y||none||none||-||-||none||1.0||-||-||-||Nikon D70|
|Canon SX70||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Canon SX70|
|Canon G9 X||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G9 X|
|Canon XC10||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon XC10|
|Canon G1 X Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G16||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-||Canon G16|
|Canon G15||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon G15|
|Canon SX50||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon SX50|
|Canon 300D||Y||none||none||-||-||none||1.1||-||-||-||Canon 300D|
|Fujifilm X20||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-||Fujifilm X20|
|Nikon D80||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D80|
|Nikon D50||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D50|
|Nikon D70s||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D70s|
|Nikon D100||Y||none||none||-||-||none||1.1||-||-||-||Nikon D100|
|Panasonic FZ330||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic FZ330|
|Panasonic FZ200||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Panasonic FZ200|
It is notable that the SX60 offers wifi support, while the D70 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Both the SX60 and the D70 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D70 was replaced by the Nikon D70s, while the SX60 was followed by the Canon SX70. 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.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Canon SX60 or the Nikon D70 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Arguments in favor of the Canon PowerShot SX60 HS:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (14.2 vs 6MP) with a 53% higher linear resolution.
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 1080/60p movies.
- More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (922k vs 130k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (6.4 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Ready to shoot: Comes with a built-in lens, while the D70 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (128x93mm vs 140x111mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a built-in lens (unlike the D70).
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (2.0 vs 1.0).
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More modern: Reflects 10 years and 7 months of technical progress since the D70 launch.
Advantages of the Nikon D70:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (11 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
- Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (1.2 bits more color depth).
- Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (2.1 stops ISO advantage).
- Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- More flexible: Makes it possible to change lenses and thus to use specialty optics.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (400 versus 340) out of a single battery charge.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in January 2004).
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the SX60 is the clear winner of the match-up (18 : 9 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon SX60 and the Nikon D70 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 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 SX60 or the D70. 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 (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). 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.
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. 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, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.
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. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
- Canon 1D Mark II N vs Canon SX60
- Canon 5D vs Nikon D70
- Canon SX60 vs Canon SX710
- Canon SX60 vs Kodak S-1
- Canon SX60 vs Nikon D800E
- Canon SX60 vs Nikon D850
- Canon SX60 vs Olympus E-510
- Canon SX60 vs Panasonic S1H
- Canon SX60 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Canon SX60 vs Sony A7R
- Canon SX60 vs Sony RX10 II
- Nikon D70 vs Sony H200
Specifications: Canon SX60 vs Nikon D70
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 SX60||Nikon D70|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||21-1365mm f/3.4-6.5||Nikon F mount lenses|
|Launch Date||September 2014||January 2004|
|Launch Price||USD 549||USD 999|
|Sensor Specs||Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||23.7 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||369.72 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||28.4 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||14.2 Megapixels||6 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4608 x 3072 pixels||3008 x 2000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.40 μm||7.85 μm|
|Pixel Density||50.42 MP/cm2||1.63 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100-3200 ISO||200-1600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100-6400 ISO||no Enhancement|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||39||50|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||19.2||20.4|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||10.8||10.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||127||529|
|Screen Specs||Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||95%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||922k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||1.8 inch|
|LCD Resolution||922k dots||130k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||No Peaking Feature|
|Continuous Shooting||6.4 shutter flaps/s||3 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||CF cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 1.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||no HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in||no NFC|
|Body Specs||Canon SX60||Nikon D70|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||340 shots per charge||400 shots per charge|
128 x 93 x 114 mm
(5.0 x 3.7 x 4.5 in)
140 x 111 x 78 mm
(5.5 x 4.4 x 3.1 in)
|Camera Weight||650 g (22.9 oz)||679 g (24.0 oz)|
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