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Compared to...

The EOS 550D isn't replacing the 500D, but comparisons must inevitably be drawn between the two models. The 550D offers a greater pixel count, but can it deliver significantly more detail? Here's how the two cameras compare in our studio.

Studio scene comparison (JPEG)

This is our standard studio scene comparison shot taken from exactly the same tripod position. Lighting: daylight simulation, >98% CRI. Crops are 100%. Ambient temperature was approximately 22°C (~72°F).

Canon EOS 550D vs. Canon EOS 500D

Camera settings:

  • Canon EOS 550D: Canon EF 50 mm F1.4 lens, Aperture Priority, ISO 100
    JPEG Large/Fine, Manual WB, Default Parameters (Standard), Self-Timer, ALO off

  • Canon EOS 500D: Canon EF 50 mm F1.4 lens, Aperture Priority, ISO 100
    JPEG Large/Fine, Manual WB, Default Parameters (Standard), Self-Timer, ALO off
Canon EOS 550D
Canon EOS 500D
4.1 MB JPEG (3872 x 2592)
3MB JPEG (3872 x 2592)

It's the same story with the EOS 500D as the Pentax K-x - the extra resolution of the 550D's sensor pays off in slightly better detail resolution, but it's only a fractional benefit, visible by very close inspection at 100% on screen. Realistically, in a high-contrast, well lit environment like this, at a low ISO setting, both cameras give excellent results.

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