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Canon T6 vs Olympus E-500

The Canon EOS Rebel T6 (called Canon 1300D in some regions) and the Olympus Evolt E-500 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in March 2016 and September 2005. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are based on an APS-C (T6) and a Four Thirds (E-500) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 17.9 megapixels, whereas the Olympus provides 8 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon T6
versus
Olympus E-500
Canon T6   Olympus E-500
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Canon EF mount lenses Four Thirds lenses
17.9 MP – APS-C sensor 8 MP – Four Thirds sensor
1080/30p Video no Video
ISO 100-6,400 (100 - 12,800) ISO 100-400 (100 - 1,600)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0" LCD – 920k dots 3.0" LCD – 215k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 2.5 shutter flaps per second
500 shots per battery charge750 shots per battery charge
129 x 101 x 78 mm, 485 g 130 x 95 x 66 mm, 479 g
Canon T6:
Check Ebay offers
Olympus E-500:
Check Ebay offers

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS Rebel T6 and the Olympus Evolt E-500? 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

The physical size and weight of the Canon T6 and the Olympus E-500 are illustrated 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.

Size Canon T6 vs Olympus E-500
Compare T6 versus E-500 top
Comparison T6 or E-500 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-500 is notably smaller (5 percent) than the Canon T6. Moreover, the E-500 is slightly lighter (1 percent) than the T6. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the T6 nor the E-500 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. A larger imaging sensor will tend to go along with bigger and heavier lenses, although exceptions exist. You can compare the optics available for the two cameras in the Canon EF Lens Catalog (T6) and the Four Thirds Lens Catalog (E-500).

Concerning battery life, the T6 gets 500 shots out of its LP-E10 battery, while the E-500 can take 750 images on a single charge of its BLM-1 power pack.

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.

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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 T6 129 mm 101 mm 78 mm 485 g 500 n Mar 2016 449i
2.
 
Olympus E-500 130 mm 95 mm 66 mm 479 g 750 n Sep 2005 599i
3.
 
Canon T7 129 mm 101 mm 78 mm 475 g 500 n Feb 2018 449 i
4.
 
Canon T100 129 mm 102 mm 77 mm 436 g 500 n Feb 2018 399 i
5.
 
Canon T5 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449i
6.
 
Canon SL1 117 mm 91 mm 69 mm 407 g 380 n Mar 2013 549i
7.
 
Canon T5i 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 n Mar 2013 649i
8.
 
Canon T4i 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 n Jun 2012 849i
9.
 
Canon T3 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 495 g 700 n Feb 2011 449i
10.
 
Canon T3i 133 mm 100 mm 80 mm 570 g 440 n Feb 2011 599i
11.
 
Canon T2i 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 530 g 440 n Feb 2010 699i
12.
 
Canon XS 126 mm 98 mm 65 mm 502 g 500 n Jun 2008 449i
13.
 
Olympus E-410 130 mm 91 mm 53 mm 435 g 500 n Mar 2007 699i
14.
 
Olympus E-510 136 mm 92 mm 68 mm 538 g 750 n Mar 2007 799i
15.
 
Olympus E-330 140 mm 87 mm 72 mm 637 g 750 n Jan 2006 999i
16.
 
Olympus E-400 130 mm 91 mm 53 mm 435 g 500 n Sep 2006 699i
17.
 
Olympus E-300 147 mm 85 mm 64 mm 624 g 750 n Sep 2004 799i
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 retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The T6 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 25 percent) than the E-500, 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. 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. 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 T6 features an APS-C sensor and the Olympus E-500 a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the E-500 is 32 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 2.0. The sensor in the T6 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the E-500 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Canon T6 and Olympus E-500 sensor measures

With 17.9MP, the T6 offers a higher resolution than the E-500 (8MP), but the T6 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.31μm versus 5.30μm for the E-500). However, the T6 is a much more recent model (by 10 years and 5 months) than the E-500, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels.

The resolution advantage of the Canon T6 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the T6 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 Olympus E-500 are 16.3 x 12.2 inches or 41.5 x 31.1 cm for good quality, 13.1 x 9.8 inches or 33.2 x 24.9 cm for very good quality, and 10.9 x 8.2 inches or 27.6 x 20.7 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon EOS Rebel T6 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus Evolt E-500 are ISO 100 to ISO 400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-1600.

T6 versus E-500 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 T6 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p23.612.9149779
2.
 
Olympus E-500 Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448none20.710.34551
3.
 
Canon T7 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p23.813.3168481
4.
 
Canon T100 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.469563
5.
 
Canon T5 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463
6.
 
Canon SL1 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.384363
7.
 
Canon T5i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161
8.
 
Canon T4i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262
9.
 
Canon T3 APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.075562
10.
 
Canon T3i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.579365
11.
 
Canon T2i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.111.578466
12.
 
Canon XS APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.478364
13.
 
Olympus E-410 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none21.110.049451
14.
 
Olympus E-510 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none21.210.044252
15.
 
Olympus E-330 Four Thirds 7.4 3136 2352none20.810.47352
16.
 
Olympus E-400 Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736none21.010.612753
17.
 
Olympus E-300 Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448none20.410.1-4048
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 T6 indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the E-500 does not. The highest resolution format that the T6 can use is 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The T6 and the E-500 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinders of both cameras offer the same field of view (95%), but the viewfinder of the T6 has a higher magnification than the one of the E-500 (0.50x vs 0.45x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Canon T6 and Olympus E-500 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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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 T6optical n3.0 / 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
2.
 
Olympus E-500optical n2.5 / 215 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5/s Y n
3.
 
Canon T7optical n3.0 / 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
4.
 
Canon T100optical n2.7 / 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
5.
 
Canon T5optical n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
6.
 
Canon SL1optical n3.0 / 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.9/s Y n
7.
 
Canon T5ioptical n3.0 / 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0/s Y n
8.
 
Canon T4ioptical n3.0 / 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0/s Y n
9.
 
Canon T3optical n2.7 / 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
10.
 
Canon T3ioptical n3.0 / 1040 swivel n 1/4000s 3.7/s Y n
11.
 
Canon T2ioptical n3.0 / 1040 fixed n 1/4000s 3.7/s Y n
12.
 
Canon XSoptical n2.5 / 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
13.
 
Olympus E-410optical n2.5 / 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
14.
 
Olympus E-510optical n2.5 / 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y Y
15.
 
Olympus E-330optical n2.5 / 215 tilting n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
16.
 
Olympus E-400optical n2.5 / 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0/s Y n
17.
 
Olympus E-300optical n1.8 / 134 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5/s Y n
Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.

The T6 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the E-500 uses Compact Flash or xD Picture cards. The E-500 features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the T6 only has one slot.

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 EOS Rebel T6 and Olympus Evolt E-500 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 T6Ymono / mono--mini2.0YY-
2.
 
Olympus E-500Y- / ----2.0---
3.
 
Canon T7Ymono / mono--mini2.0YY-
4.
 
Canon T100Ymono / mono--mini2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon T5Ymono / mono--mini2.0---
6.
 
Canon SL1Ymono / monoY-mini2.0---
7.
 
Canon T5iYstereo / monoY-mini2.0---
8.
 
Canon T4iYstereo / monoY-mini2.0---
9.
 
Canon T3Ystereo / mono--mini2.0---
10.
 
Canon T3iYmono / monoY-mini2.0---
11.
 
Canon T2iYstereo / -Y-mini2.0---
12.
 
Canon XSY- / ----2.0---
13.
 
Olympus E-410Y- / ----2.0---
14.
 
Olympus E-510Y- / ----2.0---
15.
 
Olympus E-330Y- / ----2.0---
16.
 
Olympus E-400Y- / ----2.0---
17.
 
Olympus E-300Y- / ----2.0---

It is notable that the T6 offers wifi support, while the E-500 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

Both the T6 and the E-500 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The E-500 was replaced by the Olympus E-510, while the T6 was followed by the Canon T7. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Olympus websites.

Review summary

So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Canon T6 or the Olympus E-500 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Advantages of the Canon EOS Rebel T6:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (17.9 vs 8MP) with a 53% higher linear resolution.
  • Better image quality: Features a larger and more technologically advanced imaging 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.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 1080/30p movies.
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.50x vs 0.45x).
  • 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 (920k vs 215k dots).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3 vs 2.5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • 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 into a lower priced segment (25 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 10 years and 5 months of technical progress since the E-500 launch.

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Arguments in favor of the Olympus Evolt E-500:

  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (750 versus 500) out of a single battery charge.
  • Greater peace of mind: Features a second card slot as a backup in case of memory card failure.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2005).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the T6 is the clear winner of the match-up (14 : 3 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 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.

T6 14:03 E-500

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon T6 and the Olympus E-500 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR 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 says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the T6 and the E-500 in practical situations. 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 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], 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 T64/5o4/573/1004/54/5 Mar 2016 449i
2.
 
Olympus E-500..76/100..+ +.... Sep 2005 599i
3.
 
Canon T7..o....3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 449 i
4.
 
Canon T100..o3/5..3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 399 i
5.
 
Canon T53/5+....4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449i
6.
 
Canon SL14/5+..78/1004/54/5 Mar 2013 549i
7.
 
Canon T5i......76/1004.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649i
8.
 
Canon T4i4/5+ +..77/1004.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849i
9.
 
Canon T3..80/100..69/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449i
10.
 
Canon T3i3/5o..77/1004.5/54.5/5 Feb 2011 599i
11.
 
Canon T2i..+ +..77/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2010 699i
12.
 
Canon XS..82/100..+ +3.5/54.5/5 Jun 2008 449i
13.
 
Olympus E-410..86/100..+ +4/54.5/5 Mar 2007 699i
14.
 
Olympus E-510..89/100..+ +3.5/54.5/5 Mar 2007 799i
15.
 
Olympus E-330......+o.. Jan 2006 999i
16.
 
Olympus E-400..85/100....4/54/5 Sep 2006 699i
17.
 
Olympus E-300......+o4.5/5 Sep 2004 799i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price 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.

Canon T6:
Check Ebay offers
Olympus E-500:
Check Ebay offers

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 make a corresponding selection in the search boxes 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.

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    Specifications: Canon T6 vs Olympus E-500

    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 T6 Olympus E-500
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses Four Thirds lenses
    Launch Date March 2016 September 2005
    Launch Price USD 449 USD 599
    Sensor Specs Canon T6 Olympus E-500
    Sensor Technology CMOS CCD
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor Four Thirds Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 17.3 x 13.0 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 224.9 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 21.6 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 2.0x
    Sensor Resolution 17.9 Megapixels 8 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5184 x 3456 pixels 3264 x 2448 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.31 μm 5.30 μm
    Pixel Density 5.39 MP/cm2 3.55 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video no Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 6,400 ISO 100 - 400 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 1,600 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 4+ TruePic
    Screen Specs Canon T6 Olympus E-500
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.50x 0.45x
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 2.5inch
    LCD Resolution 920k dots 215k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Canon T6 Olympus E-500
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 2.5 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Built-in Flash Built-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards CF or XD cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Dual card slots
    Connectivity Specs Canon T6 Olympus E-500
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI no HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in no NFC
    Body Specs Canon T6 Olympus E-500
    Battery Type LP-E10 BLM-1
    Battery Life (CIPA)500 shots per charge750 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 129 x 101 x 78 mm
    (5.1 x 4.0 x 3.1 in)
    130 x 95 x 66 mm
    (5.1 x 3.7 x 2.6 in)
    Camera Weight 485 g (17.1 oz) 479 g (16.9 oz)
    Canon T6:
    Check Ebay offers
    Olympus E-500:
    Check Ebay offers

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