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Nikon B600 vs Olympus TG-4

The Nikon Coolpix B600 and the Olympus Tough TG-4 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in January 2019 and April 2015. Both the B600 and the TG-4 are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 15.9 megapixels.

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

Headline Specifications
Nikon B600
versus
Olympus TG-4
Nikon B600   Olympus TG-4
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
24-1440mm f/3.3-6.5 25-100mm f/2.0-4.9
15.9 MP – 1/2.3" sensor 15.9 MP – 1/2.3" sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/30p Video
ISO 125-6,400 ISO 100-6,400
No viewfinder, LCD framing No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0" LCD – 921k dots 3.0" LCD – 460k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
7.4 shutter flaps per second 5 shutter flaps per second
Lens-based stabilizationIn-body stabilization
not weather sealedWaterproof body (15m)
280 shots per battery charge380 shots per battery charge
122 x 82 x 99 mm, 500 g 112 x 66 x 31 mm, 247 g
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Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon Coolpix B600 and the Olympus Tough TG-4? 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 Nikon B600 and the Olympus TG-4 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.

Both cameras are available in two different colors (black, red).

Size Nikon B600 vs Olympus TG-4
Compare B600 versus TG-4 top
Comparison B600 or TG-4 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus TG-4 is notably smaller (26 percent) than the Nikon B600. Moreover, the TG-4 is substantially lighter (51 percent) than the B600. It is noteworthy in this context that the TG-4 is splash and dust-proof, while the B600 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing. More than that, the TG-4 is water-proof up to 15m and can, thus, be used for underwater photography.

Concerning battery life, the B600 gets 280 shots out of its EN-EL12 battery, while the TG-4 can take 380 images on a single charge of its LI-92B power pack. The power pack in the TG-4 can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient 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, 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.
 
Nikon B600 122 mm 82 mm 99 mm 500 g 280 n Jan 2019 349 amazon.com
2.
 
Olympus TG-4 112 mm 66 mm 31 mm 247 g 380 Y Apr 2015 379ebay.com
3.
 
Canon SX520 120 mm 82 mm 92 mm 441 g 210 n Jul 2014 399ebay.com
4.
 
Fujifilm XP140 110 mm 71 mm 28 mm 207 g 240 Y Feb 2019 229 amazon.com
5.
 
Nikon P950 140 mm 110 mm 150 mm 1005 g 290 n Jan 2020 799 amazon.com
6.
 
Nikon A1000 114 mm 72 mm 41 mm 330 g 250 n Jan 2019 429 amazon.com
7.
 
Nikon P1000 146 mm 119 mm 181 mm 1415 g 250 n Jul 2018 999 amazon.com
8.
 
Nikon W300 112 mm 66 mm 29 mm 231 g 280 Y May 2017 389 amazon.com
9.
 
Nikon B500 114 mm 78 mm 95 mm 541 g 600 n Jan 2016 299ebay.com
10.
 
Nikon P900 140 mm 103 mm 137 mm 899 g 360 n Mar 2015 599ebay.com
11.
 
Nikon L840 113 mm 78 mm 96 mm 538 g 590 n Feb 2015 299ebay.com
12.
 
Olympus TG-6 113 mm 66 mm 32 mm 253 g 340 Y May 2019 449 amazon.com
13.
 
Olympus TG-5 113 mm 66 mm 32 mm 250 g 340 Y May 2017 449ebay.com
14.
 
Panasonic FZ100 124 mm 82 mm 92 mm 540 g 410 n Jul 2010 499ebay.com
15.
 
Sony WX800 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 233 g 370 n Oct 2018 399ebay.com
16.
 
Sony HX80 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 245 g 390 n Mar 2016 349ebay.com
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or 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 B600 was somewhat cheaper (by 8 percent) than the TG-4 at launch, but both cameras fall into the same price category. 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.

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 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. 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.

Both cameras under consideration feature a 1/2.3-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 5.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.

Nikon B600 and Olympus TG-4 sensor measures

The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 15.9 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the B600 and the TG-4 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the B600 is much more recent (by 3 years and 9 months) than the TG-4, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the B600 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The Nikon Coolpix B600 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 6400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus Tough TG-4 are ISO 100 to ISO 6400 (no boost).

In terms of underlying technology, the B600 is build around a CMOS sensor, while the TG-4 uses a BSI-CMOS imager. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.

B600 versus TG-4 MP

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 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.
 
Nikon B600 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p20.712.2109552
2.
 
Olympus TG-4 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p20.211.673747
3.
 
Canon SX520 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/30p20.111.567246
4.
 
Fujifilm XP140 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/15p20.712.2110252
5.
 
Nikon P950 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/30p20.712.3118952
6.
 
Nikon A1000 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/30p20.712.2109552
7.
 
Nikon P1000 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/30p20.612.1104451
8.
 
Nikon W300 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34564K/30p20.512.093850
9.
 
Nikon B500 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60i20.311.781048
10.
 
Nikon P900 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60p20.211.672747
11.
 
Nikon L840 1/2.3 15.9 4608 34561080/60i20.211.672147
12.
 
Olympus TG-6 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30004K/30p20.712.2112752
13.
 
Olympus TG-5 1/2.3 12.0 4000 30004K/30p20.511.993450
14.
 
Panasonic FZ100 1/2.3 14.0 4320 32401080/60i19.410.730639
15.
 
Sony WX800 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p20.612.2107051
16.
 
Sony HX80 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36721080/60p20.411.882248
Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/30p).

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The B600 and the TG-4 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Nikon B600, the Olympus TG-4, and comparable cameras.

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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.
 
Nikon B600none n3.0 / 921 fixed n 1/4000s 7.4/s Y Y
2.
 
Olympus TG-4none n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/2000s 5.0/s Y Y
3.
 
Canon SX520none n3.0 / 461 fixed n 1/2000s 1.6/s Y Y
4.
 
Fujifilm XP140none n3.0 / 920 fixed n 1/2000s 10.0/s Y Y
5.
 
Nikon P9502359 n3.2 / 921 swivel n 1/4000s 7.0/s Y Y
6.
 
Nikon A10001166 n3.0 / 1036 tilting Y 1/4000s 7.0/s Y Y
7.
 
Nikon P10002359 n3.2 / 921 swivel n 1/4000s 7.0/s Y Y
8.
 
Nikon W300none n3.0 / 921 fixed n 1/4000s 7.0/s Y Y
9.
 
Nikon B500none n3.0 / 921 tilting n 1/4000s 7.4/s Y Y
10.
 
Nikon P900921 n3.0 / 921 swivel n 1/4000s 7.0/s Y Y
11.
 
Nikon L840none n3.0 / 921 tilting n 1/4000s 7.4/s Y Y
12.
 
Olympus TG-6none n3.0 / 1040 fixed n 1/2000s 20.0/s Y Y
13.
 
Olympus TG-5none n3.0 / 460 fixed n 1/2000s 20.0/s Y Y
14.
 
Panasonic FZ100202 n3.0 / 460 swivel n 1/2000s 11.0/s Y Y
15.
 
Sony WX800none n3.0 / 922 tilting Y 1/2000s 10.0/s Y Y
16.
 
Sony HX80638 n3.0 / 922 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0/s Y Y
Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.

The Olympus TG-4 has 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.

Both the B600 and the TG-4 have zoom lenses built in. The B600 has a 24-1440mm f/3.3-6.5 optic and the TG-4 offers a 25-100mm f/2.0-4.9 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Nikon provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the Olympus. The TG-4 offers the faster maximum aperture.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the B600 and the TG-4 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.

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 Nikon Coolpix B600 and Olympus Tough TG-4 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.
 
Nikon B600-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y-Y
2.
 
Olympus TG-4-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y--
3.
 
Canon SX520-stereo / mono--mini2.0---
4.
 
Fujifilm XP140-mono / mono--micro2.0Y-Y
5.
 
Nikon P950Ystereo / monoY-micro2.0Y-Y
6.
 
Nikon A1000-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y-Y
7.
 
Nikon P1000Ystereo / monoY-micro2.0Y-Y
8.
 
Nikon W300-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y-Y
9.
 
Nikon B500-stereo / mono--micro2.0YYY
10.
 
Nikon P900-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
11.
 
Nikon L840-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
12.
 
Olympus TG-6-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y--
13.
 
Olympus TG-5-stereo / mono--micro2.0Y--
14.
 
Panasonic FZ100Ystereo / mono--mini2.0---
15.
 
Sony WX800-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-
16.
 
Sony HX80-stereo / mono--micro2.0YY-

Travel and landscape photographers will find it useful that the TG-4 has an internal geolocalization sensor and can record GPS coordinates in its EXIF data.

The B600 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Nikon. In contrast, the TG-4 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on ebay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the TG-4 was succeeded by the Olympus TG-5. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Olympus websites.

Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon B600 or the Olympus TG-4 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Arguments in favor of the Nikon Coolpix B600:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (921k vs 460k dots).
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7.4 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More modern: Reflects 3 years and 9 months of technical progress since the TG-4 launch.

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Reasons to prefer the Olympus Tough TG-4:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/3.3).
  • More compact: Is smaller (112x66mm vs 122x82mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 253g or 51 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (380 versus 280) out of a single battery charge.
  • Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
  • Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
  • Water-proof: Is rugged and sealed and can thus be used for underwater photography (up to 15m).
  • Easier geotagging: Features an internal GPS sensor to log localization data.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in April 2015).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the TG-4 emerges as the winner of the match-up (11 : 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. 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.

B600 08:11 TG-4

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon B600 and the Olympus TG-4 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom Camera and Best Travel-Zoom 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 incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the B600 or the TG-4 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.

Expert reviews

This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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.
 
Nikon B600..+....3.5/53/5 Jan 2019 349 amazon.com
2.
 
Olympus TG-4..+..79/1004/54/5 Apr 2015 379ebay.com
3.
 
Canon SX520..+....3.5/53.5/5 Jul 2014 399ebay.com
4.
 
Fujifilm XP140..+....3.5/54/5 Feb 2019 229 amazon.com
5.
 
Nikon P950....3/5..4/54/5 Jan 2020 799 amazon.com
6.
 
Nikon A1000..+ +3.5/5..3.5/53/5 Jan 2019 429 amazon.com
7.
 
Nikon P1000..+3.5/573/1003.5/53.5/5 Jul 2018 999 amazon.com
8.
 
Nikon W300..+....4/54/5 May 2017 389 amazon.com
9.
 
Nikon B500..+....4/53.5/5 Jan 2016 299ebay.com
10.
 
Nikon P900......77/1004/54/5 Mar 2015 599ebay.com
11.
 
Nikon L840..+ +....3.5/54/5 Feb 2015 299ebay.com
12.
 
Olympus TG-6..+ +4.5/576/1004/54/5 May 2019 449 amazon.com
13.
 
Olympus TG-5..+ +....4/54/5 May 2017 449ebay.com
14.
 
Panasonic FZ100..+....4.5/54.5/5 Jul 2010 499ebay.com
15.
 
Sony WX800............ Oct 2018 399ebay.com
16.
 
Sony HX80............ Mar 2016 349ebay.com
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. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, 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.

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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.

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    Specifications: Nikon B600 vs Olympus TG-4

    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 Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 24-1440mm f/3.3-6.5 25-100mm f/2.0-4.9
    Launch Date January 2019 April 2015
    Launch Price USD 349 USD 379
    Sensor Specs Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    Sensor Technology CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format 1/2.3" Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 6.17 x 4.55 mm 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 28.0735 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 7.7 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 5.6x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 15.9 Megapixels 15.9 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4608 x 3456 pixels 4608 x 3456 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 1.33 μm 1.33 μm
    Pixel Density 56.73 MP/cm2 56.73 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/30p Video
    ISO Setting 125 - 6,400 ISO 100 - 6,400 ISO
    Screen Specs Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    Viewfinder Type no viewfinder no viewfinder
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 921k dots 460k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Shooting Specs Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 7.4 shutter flaps/s 5 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Image StabilizationLens-based stabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Built-in Flash Built-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    External Flash no Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in Wifi built-in
    Bluetooth Support Bluetooth built-in no Bluetooth
    Geotagging no internal GPS GPS built-in
    Body Specs Nikon B600 Olympus TG-4
    Environmental Sealingnot weather sealedWaterproof body (15m)
    Battery Type EN-EL12 LI-92B
    Battery Life (CIPA)280 shots per charge380 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging no USB charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 122 x 82 x 99 mm
    (4.8 x 3.2 x 3.9 in)
    112 x 66 x 31 mm
    (4.4 x 2.6 x 1.2 in)
    Camera Weight 500 g (17.6 oz) 247 g (8.7 oz)
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