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Sony RX100 V versus Canon G9 X Mark II

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 V and the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in October 2016 and January 2017. Both the RX100 V and the G9X Mark II are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with an one-inch sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 20 megapixel. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison: Sony RX100 V vs Canon G9 X Mark II

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Sony RX100 V and the Canon G9 X Mark II is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. You can also use the toggle button to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the RX100 V – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Snapsort Sony RX100 V vs Canon G9 X Mark II
Compare RX100 V versus G9X Mark II top
Compare RX100 V and G9X Mark II rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon G9 X Mark II is somewhat smaller (4 percent) than the Sony RX100 V. Moreover, the G9X Mark II is markedly lighter (31 percent) than the RX100 V. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the RX100 V nor the G9X Mark II are weather-sealed.

Concerning battery life, the RX100 V gets 220 shots out of its NP-BX1 battery, while the G9X Mark II can take 235 images on a single charge of its NB-13L power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. 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.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Sony RX100 V» 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.6 in 10.5 oz 220 n Oct 2016 999 i i
Canon G9 X Mark II« 3.9 in 2.3 in 1.2 in 7.3 oz 235 n Jan 2017 529 i i
Canon M100« » 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.4 in 10.7 oz 295 n Aug 2017 499 i i
Canon SL2« » 4.8 in 3.7 in 2.8 in 16.0 oz 650 n Jun 2017 549 i i
Canon M5« » 4.6 in 3.5 in 2.4 in 15.1 oz 295 n Sep 2016 979 i i
Canon G9 X« » 3.9 in 2.3 in 1.2 in 7.4 oz 220 n Oct 2015 529- i
Canon M10« » 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.4 in 10.6 oz 255 n Oct 2015 499- i
Canon T6s« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 19.9 oz 440 n Feb 2015 849- i
Canon G3 X« » 4.8 in 3.0 in 4.1 in 25.9 oz 300 Y Jun 2015 999 i i
Nikon D5500« » 4.9 in 3.8 in 2.8 in 14.8 oz 820 n Jan 2015 899- i
Sony RX100 VI« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.7 in 10.6 oz 240 n Jun 2018 1,199 i i
Sony RX100 IV« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.6 in 10.5 oz 280 n Jun 2015 999- i
Sony RX100 III« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.6 in 10.2 oz 320 n May 2014 799- i
Sony RX100 II« » 4.0 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.9 oz 350 n Jun 2013 749- i

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The G9X Mark II was launched at a markedly lower price (by 47 percent) than the RX100 V, which puts it into a different market segment. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison: Sony RX100 V vs Canon G9 X Mark II

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors 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. 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 tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an one-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 2.7. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Sony RX100 V and Canon G9 X Mark II sensor measures

The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 20 megapixel. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the RX100 V and the G9X Mark II have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the G9X Mark II is a somewhat more recent model (by 2 months) than the RX100 V, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time.

RX100 V versus G9X Mark II 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. Of the two cameras under review, the RX100 V has a notably higher overall DXO score than the G9X Mark II (overall score 5 points higher), which gives it an advantage in terms of imaging quality. This advantage is based on 0.9 bits higher color depth, 0.1 EV of lower dynamic range, and 0.2 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Sony RX100 V» 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.458670
Canon G9 X Mark II« 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265
Canon M100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
Canon SL2« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179
Canon M5« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.412.4126277
Canon G9 X« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.512.349563
Canon M10« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.211.475365
Canon T6s« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.612.091570
Canon G3 X« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.412.352163
Nikon D5500« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0143884
Sony RX100 VI« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p----
Sony RX100 IV« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.659170
Sony RX100 III« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.412.349567
Sony RX100 II« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.512.448367

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the RX100 V provides a higher video resolution than the G9X Mark II. It can shoot video footage at 4K/30p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/60p.

 

Feature comparison: Sony RX100 V vs Canon G9 X Mark II

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the RX100 V has an electronic viewfinder (2359k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the G9X Mark II relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Sony RX100 V, the Canon G9 X Mark II, and comparable cameras. The full specs-sheets can be found in the camera manual or, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

Core Features
  Camera Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Sony RX100 V»2359 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 2000 24.0 Y Y
Canon G9 X Mark II«- n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 2000 8.2 Y Y
Canon M100« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 6.1 Y n
Canon SL2« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n
Canon M5« »2360 n 3.2 1620 tilting Y 4000 9.0 Y n
Canon G9 X« »- n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 2000 6.0 Y Y
Canon M10« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 4.6 Y n
Canon T6s« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n
Canon G3 X« »- n 3.2 1620 tilting Y 2000 5.9 Y Y
Nikon D5500« »optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n
Sony RX100 VI« »2359 n 3.0 1229 tilting Y 2000 24.0 Y Y
Sony RX100 IV« »2359 n 3.0 1228 tilting n 2000 16.0 Y Y
Sony RX100 III« »1440 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 2000 10.0 Y Y
Sony RX100 II« »- n 3.0 1229 tilting n 2000 10.0 Y Y

Both the RX100 V and the G9X Mark II have zoom lenses build in. The RX100 V has a 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 optic and the G9X Mark II offers a 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Sony provides a wider angle of view at the short end than the Canon, but less tele-photo reach at the long end. The RX100 V offers the faster maximum aperture.

Both the RX100 V and the G9X Mark II are current models that good online retailers will have in stock. You can check the latest prices, for example, at amazon. The RX100 V replaced the earlier Sony RX100 IV, while the G9X Mark II followed on from the Canon G9 X.

Review summary: Sony RX100 V vs Canon G9 X Mark II

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Sony RX100 V and the Canon G9 X Mark II? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Reasons to prefer the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 V:

  • Better image quality: Scores markedly higher (5 points) in the DXO overall assessment.
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/60p).
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1229k vs 1040k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (24 vs 8.2 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.8 vs f/2.0).
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.

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Arguments in favor of the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II:

  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 93g or 31 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (47 percent cheaper at launch).

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the RX100 V is the clear winner of the match-up (8 : 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.

RX100 V 08:04 G9X Mark II

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the RX100 V and the G9X Mark II in practical situations. 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. This is where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular 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.

Review scores
  Camera cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Sony RX100 V»HiRec83/1004/55/54.5/5 Oct 2016 999 i i
Canon G9 X Mark II«-75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i i
Canon M100« »Rec-4/5-3.5/5 Aug 2017 499 i i
Canon SL2« »HiRec78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549 i i
Canon M5« »Rec82/1004/54.5/54/5 Sep 2016 979 i i
Canon G9 X« »HiRec-4.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 529- i
Canon M10« »---rev4/5 Oct 2015 499- i
Canon T6s« »Rec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 849- i
Canon G3 X« »Rec-4.5/53.5/54/5 Jun 2015 999 i i
Nikon D5500« »Rec79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jan 2015 899- i
Sony RX100 VI« »-83/100--- Jun 2018 1,199 i i
Sony RX100 IV« »HiRec85/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 999- i
Sony RX100 III« »HiRec82/1004.5/54.5/55/5 May 2014 799- i
Sony RX100 II« »HiRec79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jun 2013 749- i

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when refering 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 comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

 

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. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored. If you do not see the camera that you are looking for, kindly get in touch, and I will try to add information on that model to the database.

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