Previously, we compared the spec sheets of two hot new entry level DSLR cameras: Canon EOS Rebel T1i (500D) and Nikon D5000.  If that is enough for you to make a decision between the two, it would be too simple. The spec sheet should be considered a starting point for potential buyers to evaluate their needs against the specs. What follows next should be the verification of real world performances against your expectations.

For some people, the image quality, especially the high ISO noise performance is very important. So how well do they match up against each other? Camera Labs did the tests as part of their full review of the Canon EOS Rebel T1i (500D). They also included the Olympus E-620 in the comparison.

The Nikon D5000 has a top ISO of 6400 while the Canon has top ISO of 12800. You would have thought the Canon have a better high ISO performance, wouldn’t you? Well, it turns out Canon’s marketing department may be a little too much into gimmicks. The Nikon D5000 appears to have won the noise competition  handily  above ISO800. The ISO6400 image from Nikon D5000 appears to have less noise and more details than the Canon’s. Perhaps Nikon should have made the ISO 128000 possible on the D5000. It wouldn’t be worse than the Canon’s.

Read: Canon EOS 500D / T1i vs Nikon D5000 vs Olympus E-620 High ISO Noise

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