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Canon XS vs Nikon B500

The Canon EOS Rebel XS (called Canon 1000D in some regions) and the Nikon Coolpix B500 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in June 2008 and January 2016. The XS is a DSLR, while the B500 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (XS) and a 1/2.3-inch (B500) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 10.1 megapixels, whereas the Nikon provides 15.9 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon XS
versus
Nikon B500
Canon XS Nikon B500
Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
Canon EF mount lenses 22.5-900mm f/3.0-6.5
10.1 MP, APS-C Sensor 15.9 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
no Video 1080/60i Video
ISO 100-800 (100 - 1,600) ISO 80-6,400
Optical viewfinder No viewfinder, LCD framing
2.5 LCD, 230k dots 3.0 LCD, 921k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Tilting screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 7.4 shutter flaps per second
500 shots per battery charge600 shots per battery charge
126 x 98 x 65 mm, 502 g 114 x 78 x 95 mm, 541 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS Rebel XS and the Nikon Coolpix B500? 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 side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon XS and the Nikon B500. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The B500 can be obtained in two different colors (black, red), while the XS is only available in black.

Size Canon XS vs Nikon B500
Compare XS versus B500 top
Comparison XS or B500 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon B500 is notably smaller (28 percent) than the Canon XS. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the XS nor the B500 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the B500 has a lens built in, whereas the XS 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 XS and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, you can move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons 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 XS 126 mm 98 mm 65 mm 502 g 500 n Jun 2008 449 i
2.
 
Nikon B500 114 mm 78 mm 95 mm 541 g 600 n Jan 2016 299 i
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 449 i
6.
 
Canon T3 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 495 g 700 n Feb 2011 449 i
7.
 
Canon SX20 123 mm 88 mm 87 mm 600 g .. n Aug 2009 399 i
8.
 
Canon T1i 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 520 g 400 n Mar 2009 799 i
9.
 
Canon SX10 123 mm 88 mm 87 mm 600 g .. n Sep 2008 399 i
10.
 
Canon XSi 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 524 g 500 n Jan 2008 799 i
11.
 
Canon 40D 146 mm 108 mm 74 mm 822 g 750 n Aug 2007 1,299 i
12.
 
Canon XTi 127 mm 84 mm 65 mm 556 g 370 n Aug 2006 799 i
13.
 
Nikon B600 122 mm 82 mm 99 mm 500 g 280 n Jan 2019 349 i
14.
 
Nikon P900 140 mm 103 mm 137 mm 899 g 360 n Mar 2015 599 i
15.
 
Nikon L840 113 mm 78 mm 96 mm 538 g 590 n Feb 2015 299 i
16.
 
Panasonic FZ82 130 mm 94 mm 119 mm 616 g 330 n Jan 2017 399 i
17.
 
Sony HX80 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 245 g 390 n Mar 2016 349 i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision 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 B500 was launched at a lower price than the XS, 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.

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Sensor comparison

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. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better 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 XS features an APS-C sensor and the Nikon B500 a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The sensor area in the B500 is 91 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.6 and 5.6. The sensor in the XS has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the B500 offers a 4:3 aspect.

Canon XS and Nikon B500 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the B500 offers a higher resolution of 15.9 megapixels, compared with 10.1 MP of the XS. 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 1.33μm versus 5.71μm for the XS). However, it should be noted that the B500 is much more recent (by 7 years and 7 months) than the XS, 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 B500 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Nikon B500 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the B500 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 17.3 inches or 58.5 x 43.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.8 x 35.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.4 x 11.5 inches or 39 x 29.3 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon XS are 19.4 x 13 inches or 49.4 x 32.9 cm for good quality, 15.6 x 10.4 inches or 39.5 x 26.3 cm for very good quality, and 13 x 8.6 inches or 32.9 x 21.9 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Canon EOS Rebel XS has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 800, which can be extended to ISO 100-1600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon Coolpix B500 are ISO 80 to ISO 6400 (no boost).

XS versus B500 MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

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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 XS APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none...... ..
2.
 
Nikon B500 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60i...... ..
3.
 
Canon T7 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p...... ..
4.
 
Canon T100 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.4695 63
5.
 
Canon T5 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.3724 63
6.
 
Canon T3 APS-C 12.2 4272 2848720/30p21.911.0755 62
7.
 
Canon SX20 1/2.3 12.0 4000 3000720/30p...... ..
8.
 
Canon T1i APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.5663 63
9.
 
Canon SX10 1/2.3 10.0 3648 2736480/30p...... ..
10.
 
Canon XSi APS-C 12.2 4272 2848none21.910.8692 61
11.
 
Canon 40D APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.3703 64
12.
 
Canon XTi APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.0664 62
13.
 
Nikon B600 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p...... ..
14.
 
Nikon P900 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60p...... ..
15.
 
Nikon L840 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60i...... ..
16.
 
Panasonic FZ82 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p...... ..
17.
 
Sony HX80 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36721080/60p...... ..

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The B500 indeed provides for movie recording, while the XS does not. The highest resolution format that the B500 can use is 1080/60i.

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Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the XS has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the B500 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 XS, the Nikon B500, and comparable cameras.

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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)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
1.
 
Canon XSoptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
2.
 
Nikon B500none n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/4000s 7.4 Y Y
3.
 
Canon T7optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
4.
 
Canon T100optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
5.
 
Canon T5optical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
6.
 
Canon T3optical n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
7.
 
Canon SX20202 n 2.5 230 swivel n 1/3200s 0.7 Y Y
8.
 
Canon T1ioptical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.4 Y n
9.
 
Canon SX10202 n 2.5 230 swivel n 1/3200s 0.7 Y Y
10.
 
Canon XSioptical n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.5 Y n
11.
 
Canon 40Doptical Y 3.0 230 fixed n 1/8000s 6.5 Y n
12.
 
Canon XTioptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
13.
 
Nikon B600none n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 7.4 Y Y
14.
 
Nikon P900921 n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 7.0 Y Y
15.
 
Nikon L840none n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/4000s 7.4 Y Y
16.
 
Panasonic FZ821166 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
17.
 
Sony HX80638 n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y

The XS writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the B500 uses SDXC cards.

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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 XS and Nikon Coolpix B500 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
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
1.
 
Canon XSY-----2.0---
2.
 
Nikon B500-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
3.
 
Canon T7Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-
4.
 
Canon T100Ymonomono--mini2.0YY-
5.
 
Canon T5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
6.
 
Canon T3Ystereomono--mini2.0---
7.
 
Canon SX20Ystereomono--YES2.0---
8.
 
Canon T1iYmonomono--mini2.0---
9.
 
Canon SX10Ystereomono---2.0---
10.
 
Canon XSiY----mini2.0---
11.
 
Canon 40DY-----2.0---
12.
 
Canon XTiY-----2.0---
13.
 
Nikon B600-stereomono--micro2.0Y-Y
14.
 
Nikon P900-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
15.
 
Nikon L840-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
16.
 
Panasonic FZ82Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--
17.
 
Sony HX80-stereomono--micro2.0YY-

It is notable that the XS has a hotshoe, while the B500 does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.

Both the XS and the B500 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The XS was replaced by the Canon T3, while the B500 was followed by the Nikon B600. 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.

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Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is the Canon XS better than the Nikon B500 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon EOS Rebel XS:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
  • Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
  • More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2008).

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Arguments in favor of the Nikon Coolpix B500:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (15.9 vs 10.1MP), which boosts linear resolution by 23%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 1080/60i video.
  • 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 (921k vs 230k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7.4 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the XS requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (114x78mm vs 126x98mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (600 versus 500) out of a single battery charge.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • 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.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
  • More modern: Reflects 7 years and 7 months of technical progress since the XS launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the B500 is the clear winner of the contest (16 : 9 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. 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.

XS 09:16 B500

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon XS and the Nikon B500 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera and Best Superzoom 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 remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the XS or the B500. 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.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], 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 
 DPR 
 score 
 EPZ 
 score 
 PB 
 score 
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Canon XS..82/100+ +3.5/54.5/5 Jun 2008 449 i
2.
 
Nikon B500..+..4/53.5/5 Jan 2016 299 i
3.
 
Canon T7..o..3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 449 i
4.
 
Canon T100..o..3.5/53.5/5 Feb 2018 399 i
5.
 
Canon T53/5+..4/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449 i
6.
 
Canon T3..80/10069/1004/54.5/5 Feb 2011 449 i
7.
 
Canon SX20..+ +73/100..4/5 Aug 2009 399 i
8.
 
Canon T1i..+ +74/1004.5/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799 i
9.
 
Canon SX10..+ +....4/5 Sep 2008 399 i
10.
 
Canon XSi..+ ++ +4/54.5/5 Jan 2008 799 i
11.
 
Canon 40D..+ ++ +4.5/54.5/5 Aug 2007 1,299 i
12.
 
Canon XTi..+ ++ +o4/5 Aug 2006 799 i
13.
 
Nikon B600..+..3.5/53/5 Jan 2019 349 i
14.
 
Nikon P900....77/1004/54/5 Mar 2015 599 i
15.
 
Nikon L840..+ +..3.5/54/5 Feb 2015 299 i
16.
 
Panasonic FZ82..+ +..4.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 399 i
17.
 
Sony HX80.......... Mar 2016 349 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Canon XS:
Check Ebay offers
Nikon B500:
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 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 XS vs Nikon B500

    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 XS Nikon B500
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses 22.5-900mm f/3.0-6.5
    Launch Date June 2008 January 2016
    Launch Price USD 449 USD 299
    Sensor Specs Canon XS Nikon B500
    Sensor Technology CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.2 x 14.8 mm 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 328.56 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.7 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 10.1 Megapixels 15.9 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3888 x 2592 pixels 4608 x 3456 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 5.71 μm 1.33 μm
    Pixel Density 3.07 MP/cm2 56.73 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability no Video 1080/60i Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 800 ISO 80 - 6,400 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 1,600 ISO no Enhancement
    Screen Specs Canon XS Nikon B500
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.51x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 2.5inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 230k dots 921k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Tilting screen
    Shooting Specs Canon XS Nikon B500
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 7.4 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Built-in Flash Built-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDHC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support no no
    Connectivity Specs Canon XS Nikon B500
    External Flash Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication no NFC NFC built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Canon XS Nikon B500
    Battery Type LP-E5 4xAA
    Battery Life (CIPA)500 shots per charge600 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 126 x 98 x 65 mm
    (5.0 x 3.9 x 2.6 in)
    114 x 78 x 95 mm
    (4.5 x 3.1 x 3.7 in)
    Camera Weight 502 g (17.7 oz) 541 g (19.1 oz)

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