Canon XC10 vs Nikon D300
The Canon XC10 and the Nikon D300 are two enthusiast cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in April 2015 and August 2007. The XC10 is a fixed lens compact, while the D300 is a DSLR. The cameras are based on an one-inch (XC10) and an APS-C (D300) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 12 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 12.2 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Digital single lens reflex|
|24-240mm f/2.8-5.6||Nikon F mount lenses|
|12 MP, 1" Sensor||12.2 MP, APS-C Sensor|
|4K/30p Video||no Video|
|ISO 160-20000||ISO 200-3200 (100-6400)|
|No viewfinder, LCD framing||Optical viewfinder|
|3.0" LCD, 1030k dots||3.0" LCD, 922k dots|
|Tilting touchscreen||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|3.8 shutter flaps per second||6 shutter flaps per second|
|Not weather sealed||Weathersealed body|
|125 x 102 x 122 mm, 1040 g||147 x 114 x 74 mm, 925 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon XC10 and the Nikon D300? 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 side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon XC10 and the Nikon D300. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures 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 D300 is notably larger (31 percent) than the Canon XC10. It is noteworthy in this context that the D300 is splash and dust-proof, while the XC10 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the XC10 has a lens built in, whereas the D300 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 D300 and their specifications in the Nikon Lens Catalog.
The power pack in the XC10 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
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.
|Canon XC10»||4.9 in||4.0 in||4.8 in||36.7 oz||..||n||Apr 2015||2,499||Canon XC10|
|Nikon D300«||5.8 in||4.5 in||2.9 in||32.6 oz||1000||Y||Aug 2007||1,799||Nikon D300|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||4.2 in||2.4 in||1.7 in||11.3 oz||265||n||Feb 2016||699||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||4.4 in||3.0 in||1.7 in||12.5 oz||210||n||Oct 2015||799||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G9 X« »||3.9 in||2.3 in||1.2 in||7.4 oz||220||n||Oct 2015||529||Canon G9 X|
|Canon G1 X Mark II« »||4.6 in||2.9 in||2.6 in||19.5 oz||240||n||Feb 2014||799||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G7 X« »||4.1 in||2.4 in||1.6 in||10.7 oz||210||n||Sep 2014||699||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60« »||5.0 in||3.7 in||4.5 in||22.9 oz||340||n||Sep 2014||549||Canon SX60|
|Fujifilm X30« »||4.7 in||2.8 in||2.4 in||14.9 oz||470||n||Aug 2014||599||Fujifilm X30|
|Nikon P900« »||5.5 in||4.1 in||5.4 in||31.7 oz||360||n||Mar 2015||599||Nikon P900|
|Nikon D7000« »||5.2 in||4.1 in||3.0 in||27.5 oz||1050||Y||Sep 2010||1,499||Nikon D7000|
|Nikon D300S« »||5.8 in||4.5 in||3.2 in||33.1 oz||950||Y||Jul 2009||1,799||Nikon D300S|
|Nikon D700« »||5.8 in||4.8 in||3.0 in||37.9 oz||1000||Y||Jul 2008||2,999||Nikon D700|
|Nikon D2Xs« »||6.2 in||5.9 in||3.4 in||44.2 oz||3800||Y||Jun 2006||4,699||Nikon D2Xs|
|Nikon D200« »||5.8 in||4.4 in||2.9 in||32.5 oz||400||Y||Nov 2005||1,699||Nikon D200|
|Panasonic FZ2500« »||5.4 in||4.0 in||5.3 in||32.3 oz||350||n||Sep 2016||1,199||Panasonic FZ2500|
|Panasonic LX100« »||4.5 in||2.6 in||2.2 in||13.9 oz||300||n||Sep 2014||899||Panasonic LX100|
|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 manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. 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. 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. 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon XC10 features an one-inch sensor and the Nikon D300 an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the D300 is 203 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.75 and 1.5. The sensor in the XC10 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the D300 offers a 3:2 aspect.
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.
With 12.2MP, the D300 offers a higher resolution than the XC10 (12MP), but the D300 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 5.53μm versus 3.20μm for the XC10) due to its larger sensor. However, the XC10 is a much more recent model (by 7 years and 7 months) than the D300, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.
The Canon XC10 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 160 to ISO 20000. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D300 are ISO 200 to ISO 3200, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-6400.
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). 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 XC10||1-inch||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Canon XC10|
|Nikon D300||APS-C||12.2||4288||2848||none||22.1||12.0||679||67||Nikon D300|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||..||..||..||..||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||..||..||..||..||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G9 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||21.5||12.3||495||63||Canon G9 X|
|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 G7 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||23.0||12.7||556||71||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60||1/2.3||14.2||4608||3072||1080/60p||19.2||10.8||127||39||Canon SX60|
|Fujifilm X30||2/3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||..||..||..||..||Fujifilm X30|
|Nikon P900||1/2.3||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||..||..||..||..||Nikon P900|
|Nikon D7000||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||10800/24p||23.5||13.9||1167||80||Nikon D7000|
|Nikon D300S||APS-C||12.2||4288||2848||720/24p||22.5||12.2||787||70||Nikon D300S|
|Nikon D700||Full Frame||12.1||4256||2832||none||23.5||12.2||2303||80||Nikon D700|
|Nikon D2Xs||APS-C||12.2||4288||2848||none||22.2||10.9||489||59||Nikon D2Xs|
|Nikon D200||APS-C||10.0||3872||2592||none||22.3||11.5||583||64||Nikon D200|
|Panasonic FZ2500||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Panasonic FZ2500|
|Panasonic LX100||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||22.3||12.5||553||67||Panasonic LX100|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The XC10 indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the D300 does not. The highest resolution format that the XC10 can use is 4K/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the D300 has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the XC10 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 XC10, the Nikon D300, and comparable cameras.
|Canon XC10||none||n||3.0||1030||tilting||Y||1/2000s||3.8||n||Y||Canon XC10|
|Nikon D300||optical||Y||3.0||922||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D300|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||none||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||8.0||Y||Y||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/2000s||5.9||Y||Y||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G9 X||none||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||6.0||Y||Y||Canon G9 X|
|Canon G1 X Mark II||optional||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||5.2||Y||Y||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G7 X||none||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||6.5||Y||Y||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60||922||n||3.0||922||swivel||n||1/2000s||6.4||Y||Y||Canon SX60|
|Fujifilm X30||2360||n||3.0||920||tilting||n||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Fujifilm X30|
|Nikon P900||921||n||3.0||921||swivel||n||1/4000s||7.0||Y||Y||Nikon P900|
|Nikon D7000||optical||Y||3.0||921||fixed||n||1/8000s||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D7000|
|Nikon D300S||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/8000s||7.0||Y||n||Nikon D300S|
|Nikon D700||optical||Y||3.0||922||fixed||n||1/8000s||8.0||Y||n||Nikon D700|
|Nikon D2Xs||optical||Y||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0||n||n||Nikon D2Xs|
|Nikon D200||optical||Y||2.5||230||fixed||n||1/8000s||5.0||Y||n||Nikon D200|
|Panasonic FZ2500||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Panasonic FZ2500|
|Panasonic LX100||2764||n||3.0||921||fixed||n||1/4000s||11.0||n||Y||Panasonic LX100|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The XC10 has a touchscreen, while the D300 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.
The Canon XC10 and the Nikon D300 both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
The XC10 writes its imaging data to CFast or SDXC cards, while the D300 uses Compact Flash cards. The XC10 features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the D300 only has one slot.
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 XC10 and Nikon D300 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Canon XC10||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon XC10|
|Nikon D300||Y||none||none||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D300|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G9 X||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G9 X|
|Canon G1 X Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G7 X||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon SX60|
|Fujifilm X30||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Fujifilm X30|
|Nikon P900||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Nikon P900|
|Nikon D7000||Y||mono||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D7000|
|Nikon D300S||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D300S|
|Nikon D700||Y||none||none||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D700|
|Nikon D2Xs||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D2Xs|
|Nikon D200||Y||none||none||-||-||none||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D200|
|Panasonic FZ2500||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic FZ2500|
|Panasonic LX100||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic LX100|
It is notable that the XC10 offers wifi support, while the D300 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Studio photographers will appreciate that the Nikon D300 (unlike the XC10) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.
Both the XC10 and the D300 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D300 was replaced by the Nikon D300S, while the XC10 was followed by the Canon XC15. 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 what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon XC10 and the Nikon D300? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Arguments in favor of the Canon XC10:
- Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 4K/30p movies.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1030k vs 922k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
- Ready to shoot: Comes with a built-in lens, while the D300 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (125x102mm vs 147x114mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- 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.
- Greater peace of mind: Features a second card slot as a backup in case of memory card failure.
- More modern: Reflects 7 years and 7 months of technical progress since the D300 launch.
Reasons to prefer the Nikon D300:
- Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
- Easier setting verification: Features a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (6 vs 3.8 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Makes it possible to change lenses and thus to use specialty optics.
- Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
- Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
- Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in August 2007).
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the XC10 emerges as the winner of the contest (11 : 9 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 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 XC10 and the Nikon D300 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 says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the XC10 and the D300 in practical situations. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
This is why hands-on reviews by experts 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.
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. 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. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
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. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Canon XC10 vs Fujifilm X-Pro2
- Canon XC10 vs Leica M8
- Canon XC10 vs Leica V-LUX 1
- Canon XC10 vs Leica V-LUX 5
- Canon XC10 vs Nikon D610
- Canon XC10 vs Olympus E-520
- Canon XC10 vs Olympus E-P1
- Canon XC10 vs Ricoh GR III
- Canon XC10 vs Sony A99
- Fujifilm X-H1 vs Nikon D300
- Nikon D300 vs Nikon L840
- Nikon D300 vs Sony H200
Specifications: Canon XC10 vs Nikon D300
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 XC10||Nikon D300|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||24-240mm f/2.8-5.6||Nikon F mount lenses|
|Launch Date||April 2015||August 2007|
|Launch Price||USD 2499||USD 1799|
|Sensor Specs||Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Sensor Format||1" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||12.8 x 9.6 mm||23.6 x 15.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||122.88 mm2||372.88 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||16 mm||28.4 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||12 Megapixels||12.2 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4000 x 3000 pixels||4288 x 2848 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.20 μm||5.53 μm|
|Pixel Density||9.77 MP/cm2||3.28 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||160-20000 ISO||200-3200 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||100-6400 ISO|
|Image Processor||DIGIC DV5||EXPEED|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||67|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||22.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||12.0|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||679|
|Screen Specs||Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Viewfinder Type||No viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||1030k dots||922k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||Touchscreen||no Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||No Peaking Feature|
|Continuous Shooting||3.8 shutter flaps/s||6 shutter flaps/s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Fill Flash||no On-Board Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||CFAST or SDXC cards||CF cards|
|Second Storage Option||Dual card slots||Single card slot|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Studio Flash||no PC Sync||PC Sync socket|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Headphone Socket||Headphone port||no Headphone port|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in||no NFC|
|Body Specs||Canon XC10||Nikon D300|
|Environmental Sealing||Not weather sealed||Weathersealed body|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
125 x 102 x 122 mm
(4.9 x 4.0 x 4.8 in)
147 x 114 x 74 mm
(5.8 x 4.5 x 2.9 in)
|Camera Weight||1040 g (36.7 oz)||925 g (32.6 oz)|
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