• APS-C 372.9mm2
  • 12.3 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 3200
  • 1/2.3 inch 28.1mm2
  • 12.1 megapixels
  • 24.00mm - 840.00mm (35mm eq.)

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Differences

Nikon D90 advantages over Canon SX40 HS

  • Larger sensor
    APS-C vs 1/2.3 inch
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 5.50 vs 1.54 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • RAW file ability
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more flexibility to develop your photos later
  • Fast startup
    ~0.30 vs 2.6 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 850 vs 380 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Thinner
    77 mm vs 107 mm
    Thinner
  • More dots on screen
    922k vs 230k dots
    Can mean greater resolution or a brighter screen
  • Less shutter lag
    0.21 vs 0.46 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • Longer exposure
    30 vs 15 sec
    Long exposures for night shots
  • Bulb shutter
    Bulb vs No bulb
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    Unlimited vs 8 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Higher extended ISO
    6400 vs 3200 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Canon SX40 HS advantages over Nikon D90

  • Less expensive
    $430 vs $1300 (MSRP)
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Tiltable Screen
    Tiltable vs Fixed
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Higher max flash sync
    1/2000 vs 1/200 sec
    Reduce the effect of ambient light in flash shots
  • Newer
    7 years vs 10 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    10.3 fps vs 4.5 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Slow-motion videos
    Yes vs No
    Shoot slow-motion videos

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Rear display
    Both provide
    Review photos on the back of the camera
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Manual focus
    Both provide
    AF is for the weak. Real photographers focus manually.
  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use an external screen to monitor or review video
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities

Common Weaknesses

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • Integrated ND filter
    Neither provide
    Shoot in daylight with a large aperture or slow shutter
  • External Mic Jack
    Neither provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Dual card slots
    Neither provide
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Headphone jack
    Neither provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video

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Review Excerpt

  • Wide, long all-purpose zoom lens performs well; Very good image quality; Articulating LCD; Good grip; Excellent controls.

  • Rear scroll wheel is too sensitive; Low-res LCD; No lens hood included; Slow startup time; Slow cycle time.

The Competition

Compared to Nikon D300S

Nikon D90
Nikon D300S
  • $1300
  • APS-C
  • Higher effective ISO
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
  • $1299
  • APS-C
  • External Mic Jack
  • More cross-type AF points
Canon SX40 HS
Nikon D300S
  • $342
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Tiltable Screen
  • $1299
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony DSLR-A550

Nikon D90
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $1300
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Canon SX40 HS
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $342
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Less expensive
  • Higher max flash sync
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony DSLR-A500

Nikon D90
Sony DSLR-A500
  • $1300
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $850
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Canon SX40 HS
Sony DSLR-A500
  • $342
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Less expensive
  • Higher max flash sync
  • $850
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Canon SX30 IS

Nikon D90
Canon SX30 IS
  • $1300
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $440
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Less expensive
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Canon SX40 HS
Canon SX30 IS
  • $342
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Shoots 24p video
  • Shoots 1080p video
  • $440
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • More pixels
  • Higher extended ISO

Compared to Panasonic FZ200

Nikon D90
Panasonic FZ200
  • $1300
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $320
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Canon SX40 HS
Panasonic FZ200
  • $342
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • More telephoto lens reach
  • Shoots 24p video
  • $320
  • 1/2.3 inch
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • In-camera panoramas
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