Maximum effective ISO is an estimate of the highest sensitivity at which a camera can capture excellent quality photos.
Cameras with higher effective ISO will be better choices for indoor photography, night shooting, and indoor sports photography, especially if you intend to make large prints.
You can learn more at our glossary entry.
Maximum effective ISO test data courtesy of DxO Mark.GH3 test data on DxO Mark G1X test data on DxO Mark
Cameras with more dynamic range allow you to take photos with dramatic differences in highlight and shadow areas while retaining detail in both.
Think of a brilliant sunset on a rocky beach: Bright sunset in the background, with dark rocks in the foreground. High dynamic range means more of the extremes will be faithfully reproduced.
Dynamic range test data courtesy of DxO Mark.GH3 test data on DxO Mark G1X test data on DxO Mark
Cameras with longer battery life can take more photos before exhausting their batteries.
Special note: The measurement standard for battery life stipulates that if a camera has an internal flash, it must be used for 50% of photos taken. For this reason, comparisons of one camera with an internal flash to another without will not be comparable
Large-sensor image quality. Sharp lens with useful zoom range. Tilt/swivel LCD. Twin dials. Smaller than competing interchangeable-lens cameras with a similar lens. Lots of photographer-friendly features.
Not as small as you might hope. Mediocre burst shooting and autofocus speed. Far too easy to accidentally change exposure compensation. Viewfinder is of surprisingly little use. Battery life could be better.
Professional quality video in a compact body; Still image quality ranks with the best mirrorless models and even some prosumer DSLRs; Fast autofocus; Rugged, weatherized camera build; Reasonably priced for its advanced feature set; Large selection of high quality lenses.
Not as compact as most mirrorless cameras; Live View not available during high speed bursts; High ISO image quality and dynamic range not quite as good as top APS-C cameras.