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Canon SX730 versus Olympus E-M10 III

The Canon PowerShot SX730 HS and the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in April 2017 and August 2017. The SX730 is a fixed lens compact, while the E-M10 III is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on a 1/2.3-inch (SX730) and a Four Thirds (E-M10 III) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 20.2 megapixel, whereas the Olympus provides 15.9 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison: Canon SX730 vs Olympus E-M10 III

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon SX730 and the Olympus E-M10 III 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 measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the SX730 – represents the basis or 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Canon SX730 vs Olympus E-M10 III
Compare SX730 versus E-M10 III top
Compare SX730 and E-M10 III rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-M10 III is considerably larger (46 percent) than the Canon SX730. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the SX730 nor the E-M10 III are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the SX730 has a lens build in, whereas the E-M10 III is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can find an overview of optics for the E-M10 III and their specifications in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the SX730 gets 250 shots out of its NB-13L battery, while the E-M10 III can take 330 images on a single charge of its BLS-50 power pack.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. 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.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Canon SX730» 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.6 in 10.6 oz 250 n Apr 2017 399- i Canon SX730
Olympus E-M10 III« 4.8 in 3.3 in 2.0 in 14.5 oz 330 n Aug 2017 649 i i Olympus E-M10 III
Canon SX740« » 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.6 in 10.5 oz 265 n Jul 2018 399 i i Canon SX740
Canon SX70« » 5.0 in 3.6 in 4.6 in 21.4 oz 325 n Sep 2018 549 i i Canon SX70
Canon G9 X Mark II« » 3.9 in 2.3 in 1.2 in 7.3 oz 235 n Jan 2017 529 i i Canon G9 X Mark II
Canon M100« » 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.4 in 10.7 oz 295 n Aug 2017 499 i i Canon M100
Canon G7 X Mark II« » 4.2 in 2.4 in 1.7 in 11.3 oz 265 n Feb 2016 699 i i Canon G7 X Mark II
Olympus E-PL9« » 4.6 in 2.7 in 1.5 in 13.4 oz 350 n Feb 2018 549 i i Olympus E-PL9
Olympus E-PL8« » 4.5 in 2.6 in 1.5 in 12.6 oz 350 n Sep 2016 549- i Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-M10 II« » 4.7 in 3.3 in 1.9 in 13.8 oz 320 n Aug 2015 799- i Olympus E-M10 II
Olympus E-M10« » 4.7 in 3.2 in 1.8 in 14.0 oz 320 n Jan 2014 699- i Olympus E-M10
Panasonic TS7« » 4.6 in 3.0 in 1.5 in 11.3 oz 300 Y May 2018 449 i i Panasonic TS7
Panasonic ZS70« » 4.4 in 2.6 in 1.6 in 11.4 oz 380 n Apr 2017 449 i i Panasonic ZS70
Panasonic GX85« » 4.8 in 2.8 in 1.7 in 15.0 oz 290 n Apr 2016 799 i i Panasonic GX85
Sony HX99« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.4 in 8.5 oz 370 n Aug 2018 449 i i Sony HX99
Sony HX95« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.4 in 8.5 oz 370 n Aug 2018 429 i i Sony HX95
Sony WX800« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.4 in 8.2 oz 370 n Oct 2018 399 i i Sony WX800

Any camera purchase will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The SX730 was launched at a lower price than the E-M10 III, despite having a lens build in. 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.

 

Sensor comparison: Canon SX730 vs Olympus E-M10 III

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 associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon SX730 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Olympus E-M10 III a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the E-M10 III is 704 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 2.0. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.

Canon SX730 and Olympus E-M10 III sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the Canon SX730 offers a higher resolution of 20.2 megapixel, compared with 15.9 MP of the Olympus E-M10 III. This megapixel advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.18μm versus 3.76μm for the E-M10 III). Moreover, it should be noted that the E-M10 III is a somewhat more recent model (by 4 months) than the SX730, 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 neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.

SX730 versus E-M10 III MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. 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.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
Canon SX730» 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p----Canon SX730
Olympus E-M10 III« Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34564K/30p----Olympus E-M10 III
Canon SX740« » 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p----Canon SX740
Canon SX70« » 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p----Canon SX70
Canon G9 X Mark II« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265Canon G9 X Mark II
Canon M100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278Canon M100
Canon G7 X Mark II« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p----Canon G7 X Mark II
Olympus E-PL9« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34564K/30p----Olympus E-PL9
Olympus E-PL8« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/30p----Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-M10 II« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/60p23.112.584273Olympus E-M10 II
Olympus E-M10« » Four Thirds 15.9 4608 34561080/30p22.812.388472Olympus E-M10
Panasonic TS7« » 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p----Panasonic TS7
Panasonic ZS70« » 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p19.110.610636Panasonic ZS70
Panasonic GX85« » Four Thirds 15.8 4592 34484K/30p22.912.666271Panasonic GX85
Sony HX99« » 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p----Sony HX99
Sony HX95« » 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p----Sony HX95
Sony WX800« » 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p----Sony WX800

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the E-M10 III provides a better video resolution than the SX730. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/60p.

 

Feature comparison: Canon SX730 vs Olympus E-M10 III

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the E-M10 III has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the SX730 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 SX730, the Olympus E-M10 III, and comparable cameras. If needed, the dpreview camera hub, for example, contains further detail on the cameras' specs.

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)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec)
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Canon SX730»- n 3.0 922 tilting n 3200 5.9 Y Y Canon SX730
Olympus E-M10 III«2360 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.6 Y Y Olympus E-M10 III
Canon SX740« »- n 3.0 922 tilting n 3200 10.0 Y Y Canon SX740
Canon SX70« »2360 n 3.0 922 swivel n 2000 10.0 Y Y Canon SX70
Canon G9 X Mark II« »- n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 2000 8.2 Y Y Canon G9 X Mark II
Canon M100« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.1 Y n Canon M100
Canon G7 X Mark II« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 2000 8.0 Y Y Canon G7 X Mark II
Olympus E-PL9« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.6 Y Y Olympus E-PL9
Olympus E-PL8« »- n 3.0 1037 tilting Y 4000 8.0 n Y Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-M10 II« »2360 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y Y Olympus E-M10 II
Olympus E-M10« »1440 n 3.0 1037 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y Y Olympus E-M10
Panasonic TS7« »1170 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 1300 10.0 Y Y Panasonic TS7
Panasonic ZS70« »1166 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 2000 10.0 Y Y Panasonic ZS70
Panasonic GX85« »2765 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y Y Panasonic GX85
Sony HX99« »638 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 2000 10.0 Y Y Sony HX99
Sony HX95« »638 n 3.0 922 tilting n 2000 10.0 Y Y Sony HX95
Sony WX800« »- n 3.0 922 tilting Y 2000 10.0 Y Y Sony WX800

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The E-M10 III has a touchscreen, while the SX730 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

Both the SX730 and the E-M10 III write their imaging data to SDXC cards.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
Canon SX730»-stereomono--micro2.0YYYCanon SX730
Olympus E-M10 III«Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Olympus E-M10 III
Canon SX740« »-stereomono--micro2.0YYYCanon SX740
Canon SX70« »-stereomonoY-micro2.0Y-YCanon SX70
Canon G9 X Mark II« »-stereomono--micro2.0YYYCanon G9 X Mark II
Canon M100« »-stereomono--mini2.0YYYCanon M100
Canon G7 X Mark II« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Canon G7 X Mark II
Olympus E-PL9« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y-YOlympus E-PL9
Olympus E-PL8« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-M10 II« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Olympus E-M10 II
Olympus E-M10« »Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--Olympus E-M10
Panasonic TS7« »-stereomono--micro2.0Y--Panasonic TS7
Panasonic ZS70« »-stereomono--micro2.0Y--Panasonic ZS70
Panasonic GX85« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Panasonic GX85
Sony HX99« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony HX99
Sony HX95« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony HX95
Sony WX800« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony WX800

The E-M10 III is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Olympus. In contrast, the SX730 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the SX730 was succeeded by the Canon SX730 HS.

Review summary: Canon SX730 vs Olympus E-M10 III

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon SX730 and the Olympus E-M10 III? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX730 HS:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (20.2 vs 15.9MP) with a 13% higher linear resolution.
  • Ready to shoot: Has a lens build-in, whereas the E-M10 III requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (110x64mm vs 122x84mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a build-in lens (unlike the E-M10 III).
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a build-in lens.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in April 2017).

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Arguments in favor of the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III:

  • Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
  • Richer colors: Larger pixels generate images with better, more accurate colors.
  • More dynamic range: Capable of capturing a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can be used in poorly lit environments and still produce good images.
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/60p).
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 922k dots).
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 3200/sec) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8.6 vs 5.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (330 versus 250) out of a single battery charge.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (4 months) more recently.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the E-M10 III is the clear winner of the contest (14 : 8 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.

SX730 08:14 E-M10 III

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the SX730 or the E-M10 III handle or 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 where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Canon SX730»Rec-4/5-4/5 Apr 2017 399- i Canon SX730
Olympus E-M10 III«Rec80/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Aug 2017 649 i i Olympus E-M10 III
Canon SX740« »Rec-4/5-4/5 Jul 2018 399 i i Canon SX740
Canon SX70« »----- Sep 2018 549 i i Canon SX70
Canon G9 X Mark II« »-75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i i Canon G9 X Mark II
Canon M100« »Rec-4/5-3.5/5 Aug 2017 499 i i Canon M100
Canon G7 X Mark II« »HiRec81/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Feb 2016 699 i i Canon G7 X Mark II
Olympus E-PL9« »Rec-4.5/5-4/5 Feb 2018 549 i i Olympus E-PL9
Olympus E-PL8« »--4.5/5-4/5 Sep 2016 549- i Olympus E-PL8
Olympus E-M10 II« »HiRec80/1005/55/55/5 Aug 2015 799- i Olympus E-M10 II
Olympus E-M10« »-80/1005/54.5/55/5 Jan 2014 699- i Olympus E-M10
Panasonic TS7« »Rec---3.5/5 May 2018 449 i i Panasonic TS7
Panasonic ZS70« »HiRec-4/5-4/5 Apr 2017 449 i i Panasonic ZS70
Panasonic GX85« »HiRec82/1005/54.5/55/5 Apr 2016 799 i i Panasonic GX85
Sony HX99« »----4.5/5 Aug 2018 449 i i Sony HX99
Sony HX95« »----- Aug 2018 429 i i Sony HX95
Sony WX800« »----- Oct 2018 399 i i Sony WX800

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. 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, 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 are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please send me an email, and I will try to update the database with the necessary infos.

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