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Compared to...

Once more Nikon steal the lead on paper, with a more attractive feature set which is more customizable and has better control over camera functions. Also in its favor are the large bright viewfinder (which really does produce a noticeably larger view than the EOS 400D), the excellent automatic ISO implementation (virtually 'ISO priority') and a snappier feel to the whole shooting experience (helped greatly by fast auto focus and very short blackout times). Working against the D80 however is its price, some $200 more than the EOS 400D and $100 more than the Sony DSLR-A100 which also has in-camera shake reduction.

Nikon D80 advantages

  • Much larger and brighter viewfinder
  • Very short 'viewfinder blackout time' at shutter release
  • User definable Auto ISO (minimum shutter speed, maximum ISO)
  • Customizable ISO noise reduction (although EOS 400D is clean enough not to need this)
  • Spot metering (vs. EOS 400D)
  • User comment can be set in-camera
  • Removable protective cover for LCD monitor
  • Most customizable camera (32 custom functions)
  • More comfortable grip / ergonomics (vs. EOS 400D)
  • Advanced battery information
  • Instant 'power on'
  • Arguably better build quality
 
Nikon D80

Canon EOS 400D

Sony DSLR-A100
Price
(body only)
US: $999 [check price] US: $799 [check price] US: $899 [check price]
Body material Plastic Plastic Plastic
Sensor • 23.6 x 15.8 mm CCD (DX)
• 10 million pixels
• 22.2 x 14.8 mm CMOS
• 10 million pixels
• 23.6 x 15.8 mm CCD
• 10 million pixels
Dust reduction • Dust reference image • Anti-static coatings
• Low pass filter vibration
• Dust reference image
• Anti-static coatings
• CCD-shift 'shake'
Native image size 3872 x 2592 3888 x 2592 3872 x 2592
Lens support • Nikon F-mount
• Includes DX lenses
• Canon EF mount
• Including EF-S lenses
• Sony Alpha lenses
• Minolta A-type bayonet
FOV crop 1.5x 1.6x 1.5x
Body shake reduction No No Yes, CCD-shift
File formats • RAW (compressed)
• JPEG (3 levels)
• RAW (comp. lossless)
• JPEG (3 levels)
• RAW (comp. lossless)
• JPEG (3 levels)
Auto focus • 11 area TTL
• Range: -1.0 to +19 EV
• 9 area TTL
• Range: -0.5 to +18 EV
• 9 area TTL
• Range: -1.0 to +18 EV
AF illuminator Built-in lamp Flash strobe, must be raised Flash strobe, must be raised
Color space • sRGB (2 modes)
• Adobe RGB
• sRGB
• Adobe RGB
• sRGB
• Adobe RGB
Metering sensor • 420 pixel RGB sensor
• 0 - 20 EV working range
• 35 zone sensor
• 1 - 20 EV working range
• 40 segment sensor
• 1 - 20 EV working range
Metering • 3D Color Matrix Metering II
• Center-weighted average
• Spot
• Evaluative
• Partial
• Center-weighted average
• Multi-segment
• Center-weighted average
• Spot
Exp. comp. +/- 2.0 EV +/- 2.0 EV +/- 2.0 EV
EV steps 1/3 or 1/2 EV 1/3 or 1/2 EV 1/3 EV
Sensitivity • ISO 100 - 1600
• ISO 3200 with boost
• ISO 100 - 1600 • ISO 100 - 1600
Auto ISO User definable maximum ISO and minimum shutter speed Auto (100 - 400) Auto (100 - 800)
Custom ISO NR Yes, four settings No No
Shutter speed • 30 - 1/4000 sec / Bulb
• 1/200 sec Flash sync
• 30 - 1/4000 sec / Bulb
• 1/200 sec Flash sync
• 30 - 1/4000 sec / Bulb
• 1/160 sec Flash sync
Continuous
shooting
• 3 fps
• 23 JPEG/Fine frames
• 6 RAW frames

• 3 fps
• 27 JPEG/Fine frames
• 10 RAW frames

• 3 fps
• Unlimited JPEG/Fine frames
• 6 RAW frames
White balance • Auto
• Six presets
• Manual preset
• Kelvin temperature
• Fine tunable
• Auto
• Six presets
• Manual preset
• Kelvin temperature
• Fine tunable
• Auto
• Six presets
• Manual preset
• Kelvin temperature
• Fine tunable
Image params • Six preset looks
• Sharpening: Auto, 6 levels
• Tone: Auto, 5 levels, Custom
• Color: 3 modes
• Saturation: Auto, 3 levels
• Hue: -9° to +9°
• Six preset picture styles
• Three user sets
• Sharpening: 8 levels
• Contrast: 9 levels
• Saturation: 9 levels
• Color tone: 9 levels
• B&W filter/tone: 5 of each
• Seven preset looks
• Sharpening: 5 levels
• Contrast: 5 levels
• Saturation: 5 levels
Embed comment Comment set in-camera Owner name set via software No
Flash Electronic release pop-up Electronic release pop-up Manual release pop-up
Viewfinder • Pentaprism
• Eyepoint 21 mm
• Frame coverage 95%
• Magnification approx 0.94x
• B-type Bright View Clear Matte II
• Optional grid lines
• Pentamirror
• Eyepoint 20 mm
• Frame coverage 95%
• Magnification approx 0.8x
• Laser matte screen
• Pentamirror
• Eyepoint 20 mm
• Frame coverage 95%
• Magnification approx 0.83x
• 'Spherical acute' matte screen
LCD monitor • 2.5 " TFT LCD
• 230,000 pixels
• Removable protective cover
• 2.5 " TFT LCD
• 230,000 pixels
• 2.5 " TFT LCD
• 230,000 pixels
Status LCD Yes, top of camera No, utilizes main LCD No, utilizes main LCD
Mirror-lockup Partial, 0.4 sec optional delay Custom function Automatic with self-timer
Other features • Multiple Exposure
• Wireless flash control
• In-camera retouching
n/a • Eye-start Auto Focus
• Auto-orientation status display
Custom settings 32 11 12
Storage SD/SDHC card Compact Flash card Compact Flash card
Battery EN-EL3e (7.4 V, 1500 mAh) NB-2LH (7.4 V, 720 mAh) NP-FM55H (7.2 V, 1600 mAh)
Battery status • Remaining charge (%)
• No. of shots since last charge
• Battery life (5 stage)
Battery life (3 stage) Battery life (5 stage)
USB USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
(approx. 8.8 MB/sec)
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed (WIA only)
(approx. 3.2 MB/sec)
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
(approx. 8.7 MB/sec)
Vertical grip MD-D80 (option) BG-E3 (option) No
Software • PictureProject
• FotoShare
• Capture NX (trial)
• Canon DPP
• PhotoStitich
• Canon ZoomBrowser EX
• EOS Utility (Remote Capt.)
• Picture Motion Browser
• Image Data Converter SR
Dimensions 132 x 103 x 77 mm
(5.2 x 4.1 x 3.0 in)
127 x 94 x 65 mm
(5.0 x 3.7 x 2.5 in)
133 x 95 x 71 mm
(5.2 x 3.7 x 2.8 in)
Weight (no batt) 585 g (1.3 lb) 514 g (1.1 lb) 545 g (1.2 lb)
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