Over the past several months, both Canon and Nikon introduced new entry-level Digital SLRs to their lineups. Both brands offer many new features, and better image quality. Boy, these cameras are sweet. Their light, portable, offer stunning image quality, and they are a huge step up from the previous version. It’s a Smackdown!
Round 1: Design
Both the Canon and the Nikon have wonderful design. The XSi features a huge 3 inch screen, while the D60 sports a 2.5 inch display. Being that the Canon uses Live View technology that allows you to see the image on the screen before you press the shutter button, I love the larger screen. Both the XSi, and the D60 feel almost natural to use. The buttons fall right where you would expect them to be, however, being a hardcore EOS 40D user for nearly a year now, I would love to see the addition of a “Quick Control Dial.” The D60 has the shutter button, preset modes, power switch, and command dial all at your index finger, allowing it to be almost identical to its 6.1 megapixel predecessor, the Nikon D40.
Winner: Both camera bring excellent design to the DSLR table. They both have many of the buttons placed on the right side of the unit, allowing your thumb and index fingers to do most of the controlling, without moving your left hand off the lens, making it feel almost natural to use. Canon’s XSi and Nikon’s D60 both get a 9 this round.
Round 2: Features
When comparing both brands to their predecessors, you are blown away with some of the new features. The XSi now features a 12 megapixel sensor, and Live View. The D60 is now equipped with 10.2 megapixels, and Nikon’s “Integrated Dust Reduction System” which presents several ways to rid the dust from the image sensor. Both cameras are a giant step up from their predecessor, however the Canon XSi simply has more features. The screen is absolutely breathtaking, and the shots don’t disappoint.
Winner: Canon’s XSi has plenty of features that will last you for years to come, and are easy to access and use. Don’t get me wrong- The D60 is an excellent camera, it’s just it doesn’t bring enough punch to compete with the XSi. The D60 gets a 7 this round, and the XSi gets a perfect 10.
The XSi features a 12.2 megapixel sensor, and a DIGIC III image processor allowing for excellent images. The Nikon, on the otherhand, features a 10.2 megapixel sensor. Both cameras offer great image quality, that will last you for years to come. However, the Canon XSi seems to add a bit better color quality, and sharpness to each photo. The Nikon D60 gets a 8, while the XSi gets yet another 10.
Round 3: Performance
Both the Nikon and the Canon start up immediately after you flip the power switch, allowing for you to capture the shot you want, when you want. The autofocus is wonderful on both cameras, as well. The XSi is quick to autofocus on the subject, while on the D60, it seems you wait just a tad more for the camera to focus completely. The Nikon gets a 4, while the Canon gets a 5.
Round 4: Value
Boy – these cameras have value. They are both stuffed to the brim with features, compared to their predecessor, and will have enough power to supply you for years and years to come. The Canon XSi retails for $899 with a 18-55mm lens whereas the Nikon D60 retails $150 cheaper at a mere $750 with a 18-55mm lens. In my eyes, if you have the money, spend the extra money and get the XSi, which features a larger LCD, LiveView, greater megapixel count, and frames per second (FPS), just to name a few.
The Canon XSi scored a 34, and the Nikon D60 came in with a 28.
Obviously, the Canon is a better built camera all around, and I’d recommend spending the extra $150 on a camera that packs a bunch more features. Don’t get me wrong- the D60 is an excellent step up from the D40, but it just seems Canon brought more to the table this time. XSi Wins!