Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
The Olympus E-1 and the Canon XC10 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in June 2003 and April 2015. The E-1 is a DSLR, while the XC10 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on a Four Thirds (E-1) and an one-inch (XC10) sensor. The Olympus has a resolution of 4.9 megapixels, whereas the Canon provides 12 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their sensors, their features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
|Olympus E-1||Canon XC10|
|Digital single lens reflex||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Four Thirds lenses||24-240mm f/2.8-5.6|
|4.9 MP, Four Thirds Sensor||12 MP, 1" Sensor|
|no Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO 100-800 (100-3200)||ISO 160-20000|
|Optical viewfinder||No viewfinder, LCD framing|
|1.8" LCD, 134k dots||3.0" LCD, 1030k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)||Tilting touchscreen|
|3 shutter flaps per second||3.8 shutter flaps per second|
|Weathersealed body||Not weather sealed|
|141 x 104 x 81 mm, 738 g||125 x 102 x 122 mm, 1040 g|
Body comparison: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Olympus E-1 and the Canon XC10. 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.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon XC10 is notably smaller (13 percent) than the Olympus E-1. It is worth mentioning in this context that the E-1 is splash and dust resistant, 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 E-1 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 E-1 and their specifications in the Four Thirds Lens Catalog.
The power pack in the XC10 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 want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|Olympus E-1»||5.6 in||4.1 in||3.2 in||26.0 oz||750||Y||Jun 2003||1,699||-||Olympus E-1|
|Canon XC10«||4.9 in||4.0 in||4.8 in||36.7 oz||..||n||Apr 2015||2,499||-||Canon XC10|
|Canon 6D Mark II« »||5.7 in||4.4 in||3.0 in||27.0 oz||1200||Y||Jun 2017||1,999||Canon 6D Mark II|
|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 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|
|Canon 7D« »||5.8 in||4.4 in||2.9 in||30.3 oz||800||Y||Sep 2009||1,699||-||Canon 7D|
|Leica Digilux 3« »||5.7 in||3.4 in||3.0 in||21.4 oz||750||n||Sep 2006||1,499||-||Leica Digilux 3|
|Nikon D500« »||5.8 in||4.5 in||3.2 in||30.3 oz||1240||Y||Jan 2016||1,999||Nikon D500|
|Nikon D610« »||5.6 in||4.4 in||3.2 in||30.0 oz||900||Y||Oct 2013||1,999||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D7000« »||5.2 in||4.1 in||3.0 in||27.5 oz||1050||Y||Sep 2010||1,499||-||Nikon D7000|
|Olympus E-5« »||5.6 in||4.6 in||3.0 in||30.8 oz||750||Y||Sep 2010||1,699||-||Olympus E-5|
|Olympus E-3« »||5.6 in||4.6 in||3.0 in||30.9 oz||750||Y||Oct 2007||1,699||-||Olympus E-3|
|Olympus E-330« »||5.5 in||3.4 in||2.8 in||22.5 oz||750||n||Jan 2006||999||-||Olympus E-330|
|Olympus E-300« »||5.8 in||3.3 in||2.5 in||22.0 oz||750||n||Sep 2004||799||-||Olympus E-300|
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. 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: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
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 Olympus E-1 features a Four Thirds sensor and the Canon XC10 an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the XC10 is 45 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.0 and 2.75. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the XC10 offers a higher resolution of 12 megapixels, compared with 4.9 MP of the E-1. 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 3.20μm versus 6.78μm for the E-1). However, it should be noted that the XC10 is much more recent (by 11 years and 9 months) than the E-1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.
The Olympus E-1 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 800, which can be extended to ISO 100-3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon XC10 are ISO 160 to ISO 20000 (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 following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Olympus E-1»||Four Thirds||4.9||2560||1920||-||-||-||-||-||Olympus E-1|
|Canon XC10«||1-inch||12.0||4000||3000||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Canon XC10|
|Canon 6D Mark II« »||Full Frame||26.0||6240||4160||1080/60p||24.4||11.9||2862||85||Canon 6D Mark II|
|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 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|
|Canon 7D« »||APS-C||17.9||5184||3456||1080/30p||22.0||11.7||854||66||Canon 7D|
|Leica Digilux 3« »||Four Thirds||7.4||3136||2352||-||-||-||-||-||Leica Digilux 3|
|Nikon D500« »||APS-C||20.7||5568||3712||4K/30p||24.0||14.0||1324||83||Nikon D500|
|Nikon D610« »||Full Frame||24.2||6016||4016||1080/30p||25.1||14.4||2925||94||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D7000« »||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||10800/24p||23.5||13.9||1167||80||Nikon D7000|
|Olympus E-5« »||Four Thirds||12.2||4032||3024||720/30p||21.6||10.5||519||56||Olympus E-5|
|Olympus E-3« »||Four Thirds||10.0||3648||2736||-||21.6||10.5||571||56||Olympus E-3|
|Olympus E-330« »||Four Thirds||7.4||3136||2352||-||-||-||-||-||Olympus E-330|
|Olympus E-300« »||Four Thirds||8.0||3264||2448||-||-||-||-||-||Olympus E-300|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The XC10 indeed provides for movie recording, while the E-1 does not. The highest resolution format that the XC10 can use is 4K/30p.
Feature comparison: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the E-1 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 adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Olympus E-1 and Canon XC10 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Olympus E-1»||optical||Y||1.8||134||fixed||n||4000||3.0||n||n||Olympus E-1|
|Canon XC10«||-||n||3.0||1030||tilting||Y||2000||3.8||n||Y||Canon XC10|
|Canon 6D Mark II« »||optical||Y||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||6.5||n||n||Canon 6D Mark II|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||2000||8.0||Y||Y||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||2000||5.9||Y||Y||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G1 X Mark II« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||5.2||Y||Y||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G7 X« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||2000||6.5||Y||Y||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60« »||922||n||3.0||922||swivel||n||2000||6.4||Y||Y||Canon SX60|
|Canon 7D« »||optical||Y||3.0||920||fixed||n||8000||8.0||Y||n||Canon 7D|
|Leica Digilux 3« »||optical||n||2.5||207||fixed||n||4000||3.0||Y||n||Leica Digilux 3|
|Nikon D500« »||optical||Y||3.2||2359||tilting||Y||8000||10.0||n||n||Nikon D500|
|Nikon D610« »||optical||Y||3.2||921||fixed||n||4000||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D7000« »||optical||Y||3.0||921||fixed||n||8000||6.0||Y||n||Nikon D7000|
|Olympus E-5« »||optical||Y||3.0||920||swivel||n||8000||5.0||Y||Y||Olympus E-5|
|Olympus E-3« »||optical||Y||2.5||230||swivel||n||8000||5.0||Y||Y||Olympus E-3|
|Olympus E-330« »||optical||n||2.5||215||tilting||n||4000||3.0||Y||n||Olympus E-330|
|Olympus E-300« »||optical||n||1.8||134||fixed||n||4000||2.5||Y||n||Olympus E-300|
One feature that is present on the E-1, but is missing on the XC10 is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.
The E-1 writes its imaging data to Compact Flash or xD Picture cards, while the XC10 uses CFast or SDXC cards. Both cameras feature dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails.
Connectivity comparison: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
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 Olympus E-1 and Canon XC10 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Olympus E-1»||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-1|
|Canon XC10«||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon XC10|
|Canon 6D Mark II« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Canon 6D Mark II|
|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 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|
|Canon 7D« »||Y||mono||-||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Canon 7D|
|Leica Digilux 3« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Leica Digilux 3|
|Nikon D500« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||3.0||Y||Y||Y||Nikon D500|
|Nikon D610« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D7000« »||Y||mono||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Nikon D7000|
|Olympus E-5« »||Y||stereo||-||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-5|
|Olympus E-3« »||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-3|
|Olympus E-330« »||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-330|
|Olympus E-300« »||Y||-||-||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-300|
It is notable that the XC10 offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the E-1 does not offer wifi capability.
Studio photographers will appreciate that the Olympus E-1 (unlike the XC10) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.
Both the E-1 and the XC10 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The E-1 was replaced by the Olympus E-3, while the XC10 was followed by the Canon XC20.
Review summary: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Olympus E-1 or the Canon XC10 – has the upper hand? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Advantages of the Olympus E-1:
- Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
- Easier setting verification: Features an LCD display on top to control shooting parameters.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
- More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2003).
Arguments in favor of the Canon XC10:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (12 vs 4.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 56%.
- Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 4K/30p video.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1030k vs 134k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (3.8 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the E-1 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (125x102mm vs 141x104mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- 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.
- More modern: Reflects 11 years and 9 months of technical progress since the E-1 launch.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the XC10 is the clear winner of the contest (13 : 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.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the E-1 or the XC10 handle or 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.
Expert reviews: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
This is why expert reviews are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.
|Olympus E-1»||-||Rec||rev||rev||-||Jun 2003||1,699||-||Olympus E-1|
|Canon XC10«||-||80/100||-||-||-||Apr 2015||2,499||-||Canon XC10|
|Canon 6D Mark II« »||Rec||80/100||4.5/5||4/5||4/5||Jun 2017||1,999||Canon 6D Mark II|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||HiRec||81/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||699||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||HiRec||78/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Oct 2015||799||Canon G5 X|
|Canon G1 X Mark II« »||Rec||77/100||4/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||799||Canon G1 X Mark II|
|Canon G7 X« »||HiRec||77/100||4.5/5||3.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||699||-||Canon G7 X|
|Canon SX60« »||HiRec||75/100||4/5||-||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549||-||Canon SX60|
|Canon 7D« »||HiRec||84/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2009||1,699||-||Canon 7D|
|Leica Digilux 3« »||-||-||-||-||-||Sep 2006||1,499||-||Leica Digilux 3|
|Nikon D500« »||HiRec||91/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Jan 2016||1,999||Nikon D500|
|Nikon D610« »||HiRec||87/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||1,999||Nikon D610|
|Nikon D7000« »||-||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2010||1,499||-||Nikon D7000|
|Olympus E-5« »||-||75/100||4/5||-||4.5/5||Sep 2010||1,699||-||Olympus E-5|
|Olympus E-3« »||88/100||HiRec||rev||rev||4/5||Oct 2007||1,699||-||Olympus E-3|
|Olympus E-330« »||-||Rec||rev||3.5/5||-||Jan 2006||999||-||Olympus E-330|
|Olympus E-300« »||-||Rec||rev||rev||4.5/5||Sep 2004||799||-||Olympus E-300|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. 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. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.
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. An 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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- Leica S-E Typ 006 vs Canon G3 X
- Nikon D5600 vs Canon T6
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Specifications: Olympus E-1 vs Canon XC10
|Camera Model||Olympus E-1||Canon XC10|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||Four Thirds lenses||24-240mm f/2.8-5.6|
|Launch Date||June 2003||April 2015|
|Launch Price||USD 1699||USD 2499|
|Sensor Format||Four Thirds Sensor||1" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||17.3 x 13.0 mm||12.8 x 13.0 mm|
|Sensor Area||224.9 mm2||122.88 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||21.6 mm||16 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||4.9 Megapixels||12 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||2560 x 1920 pixels||4000 x 3000 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||6.78 μm||3.20 μm|
|Pixel Density||2.19 MP/cm2||9.77 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||no Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100-800 ISO||160-20000 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100-3200 ISO||no Enhancement|
|Image Processor||TruePic||DIGIC DV5|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||No viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||n/a|
|Top-Level Screen||Control Panel||no Top Display|
|LCD Framing||n/a||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||1.8 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||134k dots||1030k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Touch Input||no Touchscreen||Touchscreen|
|Autofocus System||Phase-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/4000s||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||3 shutter flaps/s||3.8 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||no On-Board Flash||no On-Board Flash|
|Storage Medium||CF or XD cards||CFAST or SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Dual card slots||Dual card slots|
|Studio Flash||PC Sync socket||no PC Sync|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Headphone Socket||no Headphone port||Headphone port|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||no NFC||NFC built-in|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body||Not weather sealed|
|Battery Type||BLM-1 power pack||LP-E6N power pack|
|In-Camera Charging||no USB charging||USB charging|
141 x 104 x 81 mm
(5.6 x 4.1 x 3.2 in)
125 x 102 x 122 mm
(4.9 x 4.0 x 4.8 in)
|Camera Weight||738 g (26.0 oz)||1040 g (36.7 oz)|
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