So practically the next day after my previous post about Canon’s questionable “pixels before sensitivity” strategy they anounced the EOS 500D. This puppy replaces the current 450D as the decent amateur camera in the Canon line-up. The 450 had 12 MP and had decent reviews, but none of them raved about it’s low noise performance, generally describing that aspect as “more than acceptable” or “decent” unlike the introductory model the 1000D which has gained good reviews about it’s noise performance at 1600 ISO. The key difference between these cameras is that the 450D has 12 MP while the 1000D has only 10 MP. There aren’t any reviews out yet, but the new 500D has 15 MP! The sensor is the same APS-C size (too small) that Canon stupidly persist with so what are the chances of people saying that its noise performance is outstanding in a market dominated by excellent Nikon noise figures? This is probably the same (or similar) sensor that they have put in the recent 50D which has underwhelmed the reviewers in terms of noise performance; my guess is that the noise performance will be similar, but probably not an iprovement on the 450D that it replaces. It might be that the headline MP rating will tempt people more than the Nikon reviews of the D90 which would be the obvious rival, but people buying DSLR’s are wiser than the “herd” who choose one compact over another because of its higher megapixel number, most will not be shooting for billboards, and will want flashless indoor photography unspoiled by noise or aggressive noise reduction. I don’t dislike the higher MP count per se, but only if it comes with improved noise as well. Since Canon won’t turn back its headline MP strategy, our only hope this side of Black Silicon maturing into a usable technology is a BIGGER SENSOR. Are you listening Canon? No, I thought not:-)
Oh, it has video too, that will help it to win market share, but It wouldn’t swing the choice for me.