Sony H400 vs RX100 III
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in February 2014 and May 2014. Both the H400 and the RX100 III are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/2.3-inch (H400) and an one-inch (RX100 III) sensor. The H400 has a resolution of 19.9 megapixels, whereas the RX100 III provides 20 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 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III? 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 Sony H400 and the Sony RX100 III. 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 size 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 Sony RX100 III is considerably smaller (52 percent) than the Sony H400. Moreover, the RX100 III is substantially lighter (54 percent) than the H400. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the H400 nor the RX100 III are weather-sealed.
The power pack in the RX100 III can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient 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.||Sony H400||130 mm||95 mm||122 mm||628 g||300||n||Feb 2014||319|
|2.||Sony RX100 III||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||290 g||320||n||May 2014||799|
|3.||Canon SX410||104 mm||69 mm||85 mm||325 g||185||n||Feb 2015||279|
|4.||Canon SX710||113 mm||66 mm||35 mm||269 g||230||n||Jan 2015||349|
|5.||Canon G7 X||103 mm||60 mm||40 mm||304 g||210||n||Sep 2014||699|
|6.||Nikon L840||113 mm||78 mm||96 mm||538 g||590||n||Feb 2015||299|
|7.||Sony RX100 VII||102 mm||58 mm||43 mm||302 g||260||n||Jul 2019||1,199|
|8.||Sony HX99||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||242 g||370||n||Aug 2018||449|
|9.||Sony HX80||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||390||n||Mar 2016||349|
|10.||Sony HX350||130 mm||93 mm||103 mm||652 g||300||n||Dec 2016||449|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||298 g||280||n||Jun 2015||999|
|12.||Sony HX90V||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||360||n||Apr 2015||429|
|13.||Sony HX400V||130 mm||93 mm||103 mm||660 g||300||n||Feb 2014||499|
|14.||Sony H300||128 mm||89 mm||92 mm||590 g||350||n||Feb 2014||219|
|15.||Sony RX100 II||102 mm||58 mm||38 mm||281 g||350||n||Jun 2013||749|
|16.||Sony H200||123 mm||83 mm||87 mm||530 g||240||n||Jan 2013||249|
|17.||Sony RX100||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||240 g||330||n||Jun 2012||649|
|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 manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The H400 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 60 percent) than the RX100 III, which puts it into a different market segment. 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 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. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its 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 Sony H400 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Sony RX100 III an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the RX100 III is 314 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 2.7. The sensor in the H400 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the RX100 III offers a 3:2 aspect.
Technology-wise, the RX100 III uses a more advanced image processing engine (BIONZ X) than the H400 (BIONZ), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.
With 20MP, the RX100 III offers a higher resolution than the H400 (19.9MP), but the RX100 III nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 1.19μm for the H400) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the RX100 III is a somewhat more recent model (by 3 months) than the H400, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the H400 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 80 to ISO 3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III are ISO 100 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-25600.
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
| DXO |
|2.||Sony RX100 III||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.4||12.3||495||67|
|5.||Canon G7 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||23.0||12.7||556||71|
|7.||Sony RX100 VII||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||21.8||12.4||418||63|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.6||591||70|
|15.||Sony RX100 II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.5||12.4||483||67|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the RX100 III provides a better video resolution than the H400. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the H400 is limited to 720/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the RX100 III offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the H400 (1440k vs 210k dots). The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Sony H400 and Sony RX100 III in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
|2.||Sony RX100 III||1440||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon G7 X||none||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||6.5||Y||Y|
|7.||Sony RX100 VII||2359||n||3.0||921||tilting||Y||1/2000s||90.0||Y||Y|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||2359||n||3.0||1228||tilting||n||1/2000s||16.0||Y||Y|
|15.||Sony RX100 II||optional||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
Both the H400 and the RX100 III have zoom lenses built in. The H400 has a 24.5-1550mm f/3.4-6.5 optic and the RX100 III offers a 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the RX100 III provides a wider angle of view at the short end than the H400, but less tele-photo reach at the long end. The RX100 III offers the faster maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the H400 and the RX100 III write their files to SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. The RX100 III supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the H400 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 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|2.||Sony RX100 III||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Canon G7 X||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|7.||Sony RX100 VII||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|15.||Sony RX100 II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
The H400 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Sony. In contrast, the RX100 III has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the RX100 III was succeeded by the Sony RX100 IV. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Sony website.
So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Sony H400 and the Sony RX100 III? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Reasons to prefer the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (60 percent cheaper at launch).
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2014).
Advantages of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III:
- 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.
- Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (BIONZ X vs BIONZ).
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (1080/60p vs 720/30p).
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (1440k vs 210k dots).
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1229k vs 460k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 vs 0.7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.8 vs f/3.4).
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More compact: Is smaller (102x58mm vs 130x95mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 338g or 54 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (3 months) more recently.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the RX100 III is the clear winner of the contest (20 : 4 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 Sony H400 and the Sony RX100 III 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 comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the H400 and the RX100 III in practical situations. 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 hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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.||Sony H400||..||o||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Feb 2014||319|
|2.||Sony RX100 III||5/5||+ +||82/100||4.5/5||5/5||May 2014||799|
|3.||Canon SX410||..||o||..||..||..||Feb 2015||279|
|4.||Canon SX710||..||+||..||4/5||3.5/5||Jan 2015||349|
|5.||Canon G7 X||4/5||+ +||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||699|
|6.||Nikon L840||..||+ +||..||3.5/5||4/5||Feb 2015||299|
|7.||Sony RX100 VII||4.5/5||..||..||4/5||5/5||Jul 2019||1,199|
|8.||Sony HX99||..||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2018||449|
|9.||Sony HX80||..||..||..||..||..||Mar 2016||349|
|10.||Sony HX350||..||..||..||..||4/5||Dec 2016||449|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||4.5/5||+ +||85/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||999|
|12.||Sony HX90V||4/5||+ +||..||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2015||429|
|13.||Sony HX400V||4/5||+ +||..||4/5||4/5||Feb 2014||499|
|14.||Sony H300||..||+||..||4.5/5||4/5||Feb 2014||219|
|15.||Sony RX100 II||5/5||+ +||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2013||749|
|16.||Sony H200||..||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Jan 2013||249|
|17.||Sony RX100||5/5||+ +||78/100||4/5||5/5||Jun 2012||649|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, 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
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. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
Specifications: Sony H400 vs Sony RX100 III
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||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||24.5-1550mm f/3.4-6.5||24-70mm f/1.8-2.8|
|Launch Date||February 2014||May 2014|
|Launch Price||USD 319||USD 799|
|Sensor Specs||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||13.2 x 8.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||116.16 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||15.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||19.9 Megapixels||20 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5152 x 3864 pixels||5472 x 3648 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.19 μm||2.41 μm|
|Pixel Density||70.91 MP/cm2||17.18 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||720/30p Video||1080/60p Video|
|ISO Setting||80 - 3,200 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||80 - 25,600 ISO|
|Image Processor||BIONZ||BIONZ X|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||67|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||22.4|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||12.3|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||495|
|Screen Specs||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||210k dots||1440k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||460k dots||1229k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||no Peaking Feature||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/2000s||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||0.7 shutter flaps/s||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||MS or SDXC cards||MS or SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|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|
|Near-Field Communication||no NFC||NFC built-in|
|Body Specs||Sony H400||Sony RX100 III|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||300 shots per charge||320 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||no USB charging||USB charging|
130 x 95 x 122 mm
(5.1 x 3.7 x 4.8 in)
102 x 58 x 41 mm
(4.0 x 2.3 x 1.6 in)
|Camera Weight||628 g (22.2 oz)||290 g (10.2 oz)|
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