Canon PowerShot SD990 IS vs. Nikon D3300

Comparison

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PowerShot SD990 IS image
vs
D3300 image
Canon PowerShot SD990 IS Nikon D3300
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Megapixels
14.70
24.20
Max. image resolution
4416 x 3312
6000 x 4000

Sensor

Sensor type
CCD
CMOS
Sensor size
1/1.7" (~ 7.53 x 5.64 mm)
23.5 x 15.6 mm
Sensor resolution
4438 x 3312
6045 x 4003
Diagonal
9.41 mm
28.21 mm
Sensor size comparison
Sensor size is generally a good indicator of the quality of the camera. Sensors can vary greatly in size. As a general rule, the bigger the sensor, the better the image quality.

Bigger sensors are more effective because they have more surface area to capture light. An important factor when comparing digital cameras is also camera generation. Generally, newer sensors will outperform the older.

Learn more about sensor sizes »

Actual sensor size

Note: Actual size is set to screen → change »
vs
1 : 8.63
(ratio)
Canon PowerShot SD990 IS Nikon D3300
Surface area:
42.47 mm² vs 366.60 mm²
Difference: 324.13 mm² (763%)
D3300 sensor is approx. 8.63x bigger than SD990 IS sensor.
Note: You are comparing sensors of very different generations. There is a gap of 6 years between Canon SD990 IS (2008) and Nikon D3300 (2014). Six years is a lot of time in terms of technology, meaning newer sensors are overall much more efficient than the older ones.
Pixel pitch
1.7 µm
3.89 µm
Pixel pitch tells you the distance from the center of one pixel (photosite) to the center of the next. It tells you how close the pixels are to each other.

The bigger the pixel pitch, the further apart they are and the bigger each pixel is. Bigger pixels tend to have better signal to noise ratio and greater dynamic range.
Difference: 2.19 µm (129%)
Pixel pitch of D3300 is approx. 129% higher than pixel pitch of SD990 IS.
Pixel area
2.89 µm²
15.13 µm²
Pixel or photosite area affects how much light per pixel can be gathered. The larger it is the more light can be collected by a single pixel.

Larger pixels have the potential to collect more photons, resulting in greater dynamic range, while smaller pixels provide higher resolutions (more detail) for a given sensor size.
Relative pixel sizes:
vs
Pixel area difference: 12.24 µm² (424%)
A pixel on Nikon D3300 sensor is approx. 424% bigger than a pixel on Canon SD990 IS.
Pixel density
34.74 MP/cm²
6.62 MP/cm²
Pixel density tells you how many million pixels fit or would fit in one square cm of the sensor.

Higher pixel density means smaller pixels and lower pixel density means larger pixels.
Difference: 28.12 µm (425%)
Canon SD990 IS has approx. 425% higher pixel density than Nikon D3300.
To learn about the accuracy of these numbers, click here.



Specs

Canon SD990 IS
Nikon D3300
Crop factor
4.6
1.53
Total megapixels
24.78
Effective megapixels
14.70
24.20
Optical zoom
3.7x
Digital zoom
Yes
ISO sensitivity
Auto, 80 ,100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800 (25600 with boost)
RAW
Manual focus
Normal focus range
50 cm
Macro focus range
5 cm
Focal length (35mm equiv.)
36 - 133 mm
Aperture priority
No
Yes
Max. aperture
f2.8 - f5.8
Max. aperture (35mm equiv.)
f12.9 - f26.7
n/a
Metering
Multi, Center-weighted, Spot
Multi, Center-weighted, Spot
Exposure compensation
±2 EV (in 1/3 EV steps)
±5 EV (in 1/3 EV steps)
Shutter priority
No
Yes
Min. shutter speed
15 sec
30 sec
Max. shutter speed
1/1600 sec
1/4000 sec
Built-in flash
External flash
Viewfinder
Optical (tunnel)
Optical (pentamirror)
White balance presets
5
12
Screen size
2.5"
3"
Screen resolution
230,000 dots
921,000 dots
Video capture
Max. video resolution
1920x1080 (60p/50p/30p/25p/24p)
Storage types
SD/SDHC/MMC card
SD/SDHC/SDXC
USB
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI
Wireless
GPS
Battery
Lithium-Ion NB-5L battery
Li-ion EN-EL14a battery
Weight
205 g
460 g
Dimensions
98 x 62 x 28 mm
124 x 98 x 75.5 mm
Year
2008
2014




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Diagonal

Diagonal is calculated by the use of Pythagorean theorem:
Diagonal =  w² + h²
where w = sensor width and h = sensor height

Canon SD990 IS diagonal

The diagonal of SD990 IS sensor is not 1/1.7 or 0.59" (14.9 mm) as you might expect, but approximately two thirds of that value - 9.41 mm. If you want to know why, see sensor sizes.

w = 7.53 mm
h = 5.64 mm
Diagonal =  7.53² + 5.64²   = 9.41 mm

Nikon D3300 diagonal

w = 23.50 mm
h = 15.60 mm
Diagonal =  23.50² + 15.60²   = 28.21 mm


Surface area

Surface area is calculated by multiplying the width and the height of a sensor.

SD990 IS sensor area

Width = 7.53 mm
Height = 5.64 mm

Surface area = 7.53 × 5.64 = 42.47 mm²

D3300 sensor area

Width = 23.50 mm
Height = 15.60 mm

Surface area = 23.50 × 15.60 = 366.60 mm²


Pixel pitch

Pixel pitch is the distance from the center of one pixel to the center of the next measured in micrometers (µm). It can be calculated with the following formula:
Pixel pitch =   sensor width in mm  × 1000
sensor resolution width in pixels

SD990 IS pixel pitch

Sensor width = 7.53 mm
Sensor resolution width = 4438 pixels
Pixel pitch =   7.53  × 1000  = 1.7 µm
4438

D3300 pixel pitch

Sensor width = 23.50 mm
Sensor resolution width = 6045 pixels
Pixel pitch =   23.50  × 1000  = 3.89 µm
6045


Pixel area

The area of one pixel can be calculated by simply squaring the pixel pitch:
Pixel area = pixel pitch²

You could also divide sensor surface area with effective megapixels:
Pixel area =   sensor surface area in mm²
effective megapixels

SD990 IS pixel area

Pixel pitch = 1.7 µm

Pixel area = 1.7² = 2.89 µm²

D3300 pixel area

Pixel pitch = 3.89 µm

Pixel area = 3.89² = 15.13 µm²


Pixel density

Pixel density can be calculated with the following formula:
Pixel density =  ( sensor resolution width in pixels )² / 1000000
sensor width in cm

One could also use this formula:
Pixel density =   effective megapixels × 1000000  / 10000
sensor surface area in mm²

SD990 IS pixel density

Sensor resolution width = 4438 pixels
Sensor width = 0.753 cm

Pixel density = (4438 / 0.753)² / 1000000 = 34.74 MP/cm²

D3300 pixel density

Sensor resolution width = 6045 pixels
Sensor width = 2.35 cm

Pixel density = (6045 / 2.35)² / 1000000 = 6.62 MP/cm²


Sensor resolution

Sensor resolution is calculated from sensor size and effective megapixels. It's slightly higher than maximum (not interpolated) image resolution which is usually stated on camera specifications. Sensor resolution is used in pixel pitch, pixel area, and pixel density formula. For sake of simplicity, we're going to calculate it in 3 stages.

1. First we need to find the ratio between horizontal and vertical length by dividing the former with the latter (aspect ratio). It's usually 1.33 (4:3) or 1.5 (3:2), but not always.

2. With the ratio (r) known we can calculate the X from the formula below, where X is a vertical number of pixels:
(X × r) × X = effective megapixels × 1000000    →   
X =  effective megapixels × 1000000
r
3. To get sensor resolution we then multiply X with the corresponding ratio:

Resolution horizontal: X × r
Resolution vertical: X

SD990 IS sensor resolution

Sensor width = 7.53 mm
Sensor height = 5.64 mm
Effective megapixels = 14.70
r = 7.53/5.64 = 1.34
X =  14.70 × 1000000  = 3312
1.34
Resolution horizontal: X × r = 3312 × 1.34 = 4438
Resolution vertical: X = 3312

Sensor resolution = 4438 x 3312

D3300 sensor resolution

Sensor width = 23.50 mm
Sensor height = 15.60 mm
Effective megapixels = 24.20
r = 23.50/15.60 = 1.51
X =  24.20 × 1000000  = 4003
1.51
Resolution horizontal: X × r = 4003 × 1.51 = 6045
Resolution vertical: X = 4003

Sensor resolution = 6045 x 4003


Crop factor

Crop factor or focal length multiplier is calculated by dividing the diagonal of 35 mm film (43.27 mm) with the diagonal of the sensor.
Crop factor =   43.27 mm
sensor diagonal in mm


SD990 IS crop factor

Sensor diagonal in mm = 9.41 mm
Crop factor =   43.27  = 4.6
9.41

D3300 crop factor

Sensor diagonal in mm = 28.21 mm
Crop factor =   43.27  = 1.53
28.21

35 mm equivalent aperture

Equivalent aperture (in 135 film terms) is calculated by multiplying lens aperture with crop factor (a.k.a. focal length multiplier).

SD990 IS equivalent aperture

Crop factor = 4.6
Aperture = f2.8 - f5.8

35-mm equivalent aperture = (f2.8 - f5.8) × 4.6 = f12.9 - f26.7

D3300 equivalent aperture

Aperture is a lens characteristic, so it's calculated only for fixed lens cameras. If you want to know the equivalent aperture for Nikon D3300, take the aperture of the lens you're using and multiply it with crop factor.

Crop factor for Nikon D3300 is 1.53

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