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Compared to...

We continue our comparison of the three newest five megapixel four times zoom digital cameras. The Canon PowerShot G5 vs. Nikon Coolpix 5400 vs. Sony DSC-V1. Note that we had to use some exposure compensation on the G5 and DSC-V1 to achieve the same exposure as the Coolpix 5400 (which to be honest metered the best exposure anyway).

Studio scene comparison

  • Canon PowerShot G5: Aperture Priority AE, ISO 50, +0.3 EV compensation,
    Default Image Parameters, Manual preset white balance
  • Nikon Coolpix 5400: Aperture Priority AE, ISO 50, 0.0 EV compensation,
    Default Image Parameters (Normal Sharpening), Manual preset white balance
  • Sony DSC-V1: Aperture Priority AE, ISO 100, +0.7 EV compensation,
    Default Image Parameters, Manual preset white balance

Each square crop is a 200% magnification of a 80 x 80 portion of the image.

Canon PowerShot G5 Nikon Coolpix 5400 Sony DSC-V1
ISO 50, 1/4 sec, F5.0 ISO 50, 1/3 sec, F5.2 ISO 100, 1/5 sec, F5.0
2,110 KB JPEG 2,243 KB JPEG 2,078 KB JPEG

Firstly all three cameras produced an almost identical tonal range (once the exposures had been equalized), color response was subtly different between the cameras but this is only noticeable in the response to the red of the flowers and crayons. The Coolpix 5400 exhibits softness in the corners of the frame, it's noticeably softer than the G5 and V1 with detail near the left or right edge or corners. The G5 and V1 both exhibit some slight chromatic aberration (most noticeable around the 'Kodak' logo crop. Overall the G5 has the sharpest image with the most detail, it also has the least amount of sharpening artifacts (such as halos around dark detail).

In summary

  • Tonal response - equal
  • Color response - quite similar, some subtle differences (reds mostly)
  • Best resolution / detail - Canon G5 followed by Sony DSC-V1
  • Best lens sharpness - Canon G5 followed by Sony DSC-V1
  • Least visible chromatic aberrations - Nikon Coolpix 5400
  • Lease visible noise - Nikon Coolpix 5400 followed by Sony DSC-V1

Also available for download

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Total comments: 5

If I buy used one on Ebay, how much for good price??. Thanks so much!!


Used this like 10 years ago. It looks kinda cool, the size is nice, the lens is nice. It's horribly noisy (optically) at "higher" iso. Back then it was good/ok low-light performance for a digital, but we've come a long way!

1 upvote

So, given this is a 12 going on 13 year old camera, and you could pick one up for 12 bux with extra working batteries, would it still be considered an interesting IF not excellent camera?. I have compact flash cards to go into just laying around from when I had a Canon XT and once had the G2 which took pretty good stills. (Has the feel of one of the classic Canon rangefinders). Anyway, even though 4x zoom isn't much, is it better than a cell phone camera?...Thanks

Comment edited 1 minute after posting

Just picked one up for £40 UK pounds, in great condition, it may be old and feels old. But its very good and clean as its not bloated with too many pixels. The lens is sharp. For what i could buy new for £40 its like 10x better.

1 upvote
jazz camcorder

i bought a bulk lot of cameras camcorders mp4 players gps systems ect about 2 years ago for 48nzd and this camera was in the lot and all it needed was a new battery and i must say it takes some really hq photos and it damn good in low light and seeing as it only 5mp that is good enough for me

Total comments: 5