Nikon Z50 vs Olympus Stylus 1s
The Nikon Z50 and the Olympus Stylus 1s are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in October 2019 and April 2015. The Z50 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, while the Stylus 1s is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (Z50) and a 1/1.7-inch (Stylus 1s) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 20.7 megapixels, whereas the Olympus provides 11.8 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon Z50 and the Olympus Stylus 1s? 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 Nikon Z50 and the Olympus Stylus 1s. 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 Olympus Stylus 1s is notably smaller (15 percent) than the Nikon Z50. It is worth mentioning in this context that the Z50 is splash and dust resistant, while the Stylus 1s does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the Stylus 1s has a lens built in, whereas the Z50 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup.
The power pack in the Z50 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.
|1.||Nikon Z50||127 mm||94 mm||60 mm||450 g||320||Y||Oct 2019||859|
|2.||Olympus Stylus 1s||116 mm||87 mm||57 mm||402 g||450||n||Apr 2015||699|
|3.||Canon M50||116 mm||88 mm||59 mm||390 g||235||n||Feb 2018||779|
|4.||Canon G5 X||112 mm||76 mm||44 mm||353 g||210||n||Oct 2015||799|
|5.||Canon G1 X Mark II||116 mm||74 mm||66 mm||553 g||240||n||Feb 2014||799|
|6.||Fujifilm X30||119 mm||72 mm||60 mm||423 g||470||n||Aug 2014||599|
|7.||Nikon D6||160 mm||163 mm||92 mm||1270 g||3580||Y||Feb 2020||6,499|
|8.||Nikon D5500||124 mm||97 mm||70 mm||420 g||820||n||Jan 2015||899|
|9.||Nikon 1 V3||111 mm||65 mm||33 mm||381 g||310||n||Mar 2014||799|
|10.||Nikon D5300||125 mm||98 mm||76 mm||480 g||600||n||Oct 2013||799|
|11.||Olympus Stylus 1||116 mm||87 mm||57 mm||402 g||410||n||Oct 2013||699|
|12.||Olympus E-420||130 mm||91 mm||53 mm||440 g||500||n||Mar 2008||599|
|13.||Panasonic G90||130 mm||94 mm||77 mm||536 g||290||Y||Apr 2019||999|
|14.||Sigma fp||113 mm||70 mm||45 mm||422 g||280||Y||Jul 2019||1,899|
|15.||Sony A6400||120 mm||67 mm||50 mm||403 g||410||Y||Jan 2019||899|
|16.||Sony A6100||120 mm||67 mm||59 mm||396 g||420||n||Aug 2019||749|
|17.||Sony A6300||120 mm||67 mm||49 mm||404 g||400||Y||Feb 2016||999|
|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 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 Stylus 1s was launched at a lower price than the Z50, despite having a lens built 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. 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 tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon Z50 features an APS-C sensor and the Olympus Stylus 1s a 1/1.7-inch sensor. The sensor area in the Stylus 1s is 88 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 4.5. The sensor in the Z50 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the Stylus 1s offers a 4:3 aspect.
With 20.7MP, the Z50 offers a higher resolution than the Stylus 1s (11.8MP), but the Z50 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.22μm versus 1.91μm for the Stylus 1s) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the Z50 is a much more recent model (by 4 years and 5 months) than the Stylus 1s, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. 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.
The resolution advantage of the Nikon Z50 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the Z50 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 27.8 x 18.6 inches or 70.7 x 47.1 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 22.3 x 14.8 inches or 56.6 x 37.7 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 18.6 x 12.4 inches or 47.1 x 31.4 cm. The corresponding values for the Olympus Stylus 1s are 19.8 x 14.9 inches or 50.4 x 37.8 cm for good quality, 15.9 x 11.9 inches or 40.3 x 30.2 cm for very good quality, and 13.2 x 9.9 inches or 33.6 x 25.2 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Z50 has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.
The Nikon Z50 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 51200, which can be extended to ISO 100-204800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus Stylus 1s are ISO 100 to ISO 12800 (no boost).
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 table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
| DXO |
|2.||Olympus Stylus 1s||1/1.7||11.8||3968||2976||1080/30p||..||..||..||..|
|4.||Canon G5 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|5.||Canon G1 X Mark II||1.5-inch||13.0||4160||3120||1080/30p||21.5||10.8||581||58|
|7.||Nikon D6||Full Frame||20.7||5568||3712||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|9.||Nikon 1 V3||1-inch||18.2||5232||3488||1080/60p||20.8||10.7||384||52|
|11.||Olympus Stylus 1||1/1.7||11.8||3968||2976||1080/30p||20.7||11.6||179||51|
|12.||Olympus E-420||Four Thirds||10.0||3648||2736||none||21.5||10.4||527||56|
|13.||Panasonic G90||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|14.||Sigma fp||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the Z50 provides a higher video resolution than the Stylus 1s. It can shoot video footage at 4K/30p, while the Olympus is limited to 1080/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The two cameras under consideration are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the Z50 offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the Stylus 1s (2360k vs 1440k dots). The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Nikon Z50, the Olympus Stylus 1s, and comparable cameras.
|2.||Olympus Stylus 1s||1440||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||7.0||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon G5 X||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/2000s||5.9||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon G1 X Mark II||optional||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||5.2||Y||Y|
|9.||Nikon 1 V3||optional||n||3.0||1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||60.0||Y||n|
|11.||Olympus Stylus 1||1440||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||7.0||Y||Y|
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the Z50 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
The Nikon Z50 and the Olympus Stylus 1s 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.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the Z50 and the Stylus 1s write their files to SDXC cards. The Z50 supports UHS-II cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 312 MB/s), while the Stylus 1s cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.
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 Z50 and Olympus Stylus 1s and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|2.||Olympus Stylus 1s||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|4.||Canon G5 X||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Canon G1 X Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|9.||Nikon 1 V3||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|11.||Olympus Stylus 1||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
It is notable that the Z50 has a microphone port, which is missing on the Stylus 1s. Such an external microphone input can help to substantially improve the quality of audio recordings when a good external microphone is used.
Both the Z50 and the Stylus 1s are recent models that are part of the current product line-up. The Stylus 1s replaced the earlier Olympus Stylus 1, while the Z50 does not have a direct predecessor. 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.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon Z50 or the Olympus Stylus 1s – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon Z50:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (20.7 vs 11.8MP) with a 35% 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.
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/30p).
- Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2360k vs 1440k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.68x vs 0.58x).
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.2" vs 3.0") for image review and settings control.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (11 vs 7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- More flexible: Accepts interchangeable lenses, so that lens characteristics can be altered.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- Faster buffer clearing: Supports Ultra High Speed (UHS-II) SDXC cards.
- More modern: Reflects 4 years and 5 months of technical progress since the Stylus 1s launch.
Reasons to prefer the Olympus Stylus 1s:
- Ready to shoot: Has an integrated lens, whereas the Z50 necessitates an extra lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (116x87mm vs 127x94mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens built in (unlike the Z50).
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (450 versus 320) out of a single battery charge.
- Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- 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 Z50 is the clear winner of the match-up (21 : 7 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon Z50 and the Olympus Stylus 1s place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera and Best Superzoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the Z50 or the Stylus 1s perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.
This is why expert reviews 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.
|1.||Nikon Z50||5/5||..||85/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2019||859|
|2.||Olympus Stylus 1s||..||..||..||..||..||Apr 2015||699|
|3.||Canon M50||..||+||79/100||..||3.5/5||Feb 2018||779|
|4.||Canon G5 X||5/5||+ +||78/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2015||799|
|5.||Canon G1 X Mark II||3/5||+||77/100||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||799|
|6.||Fujifilm X30||4/5||..||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2014||599|
|7.||Nikon D6||..||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2020||6,499|
|8.||Nikon D5500||5/5||+||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2015||899|
|9.||Nikon 1 V3||3/5||..||76/100||4.5/5||4/5||Mar 2014||799|
|10.||Nikon D5300||4/5||+ +||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||799|
|11.||Olympus Stylus 1||..||+ +||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||699|
|12.||Olympus E-420||..||85/100||+ +||4/5||4.5/5||Mar 2008||599|
|13.||Panasonic G90||4.5/5||+||83/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2019||999|
|14.||Sigma fp||4/5||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Jul 2019||1,899|
|15.||Sony A6400||4/5||+||85/100||4.5/5||4/5||Jan 2019||899|
|16.||Sony A6100||..||..||82/100||4/5||5/5||Aug 2019||749|
|17.||Sony A6300||4.5/5||+||85/100||5/5||5/5||Feb 2016||999|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
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 comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
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Specifications: Nikon Z50 vs Olympus Stylus 1s
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||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||28-300mm f/2.8|
|Launch Date||October 2019||April 2015|
|Launch Price||USD 859||USD 699|
|Sensor Specs||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||1/1.7" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.5 x 15.7 mm||7.6 x 5.7 mm|
|Sensor Area||368.95 mm2||43.32 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.3 mm||9.5 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||20.7 Megapixels||11.8 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5568 x 3712 pixels||3968 x 2976 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||4.22 μm||1.91 μm|
|Pixel Density||5.60 MP/cm2||27.26 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 51,200 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 204,800 ISO||no Enhancement|
|Image Processor||EXPEED 6||TruePic VI|
|Screen Specs||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||2360k dots||1440k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.2inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|Focus System||On-Sensor Phase-detect||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/4000s||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||11 shutter flaps/s||7 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/4000s||no E-Shutter|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-II||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Bluetooth Support||Bluetooth built-in||no Bluetooth|
|Body Specs||Nikon Z50||Olympus Stylus 1s|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body||not weather sealed|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||320 shots per charge||450 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
127 x 94 x 60 mm
(5.0 x 3.7 x 2.4 in)
116 x 87 x 57 mm
(4.6 x 3.4 x 2.2 in)
|Camera Weight||450 g (15.9 oz)||402 g (14.2 oz)|
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