Updated (February, 2011): Compare the Canon EOS 40D vs Canon EOS 600D

Canon EOS 40D

Tie
Canon EOS 40D

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Reasons to buy the Canon EOS 40D

Continuous shooting
Rapid fire
6.5 fps
Shutter lag
Barely any delay taking photos
128 ms shutter lag
Battery life
Great battery life
1100 shots
Badge
Built-in focus motor
Autofocuses with more lenses
 

Reasons to buy the Canon EOS 550D

Screen resolution
High resolution screen
1,040k dots
Supports 24p
24p movies
For that film look
External mic jack
External mic jack
Record higher quality audio with a microphone
Size
Really small
Prosumer size 129x98x62 mm
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Canon 40D

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Shutter lag Significantly less shutter lag 128 ms vs 252 ms
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Around 50% less delay when taking photos
Battery life Longer battery life 1100 shots vs 440 shots
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2.5x more shots per battery charge
Continuous shooting Shoots faster 6.5 fps vs 3.7 fps
Help
Around 80% faster continuous shooting
Cross type focus points More cross-type focus points 9 vs 1
Help
Grab focus in difficult situations
Viewfinder size Larger viewfinder 0.59x vs 0.54x
Help
Around 20% larger viewfinder
Viewfinder Has a pentaprism viewfinder Pentaprism vs Pentamirror
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Pentaprism viewfinders are typically brighter
Fastest shutter speed Much faster max shutter speed 1/8000s vs 1/4000s
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2x faster max shutter speed
Canon EOS 40D Learn more about
the Canon 40D

Advantages of the Canon 550D

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Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen 1,040k dots vs 230k dots
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More than 4.5x higher resolution screen
Movie format Shoots movies 1080p @ 30fps vs None
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Shoots Full HD (1080p) video as well as still pictures
True resolution Significantly higher true resolution 17.9 MP vs 10.1 MP
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Capture around 80% more detail in your photos
Dynamic range More dynamic range 11.5 EV vs 11.3 EV
Help
0.2 f-stops more dynamic range
Overall image quality Slightly better image quality 66.0 vs 64.0
Help
Almost the same
Size Smaller 129x98x62 mm vs 146x108x74 mm
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More than 30% smaller
Thickness Much thinner 2.4" vs 2.9"
Help
Around 20% thinner
Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity 6,400 ISO vs 1,600 ISO
Help
The 550D's maximum light sensitivity is 2 f-stops better
Weight Lighter 530 g vs 822 g
Help
Around 40% lighter
Light sensitivity (boost) Better boost ISO 12,800 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The 550D's boost ISO is 2 f-stops better
Lowest price Slightly cheaper $830.23 vs $1,138.00
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The best price we've seen is $308 cheaper (around 30% less)
Canon EOS 550D Learn more about
the Canon 550D
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recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent DSLRs, and ignoring price

Canon EOS 40D Canon EOS 40D 58
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        57 Canon EOS 550D Canon EOS 550D
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              similarities

              Compared to recent DSLRs

              Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
              Lens availability Many lenses available Help
              197 lenses
              Startup delay Minimal startup delay Help
              400 ms startup delay
              Thickness Thin Help
              40D:2.9"
              550D:2.4"
              Built-in flash Each has a built-in flash Help
              External flash not needed
              Viewfinder coverage Below average viewfinder coverage Help
              95%
              Storage slots Fewer storage slots Help
              1
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Autofocus No video autofocus Help
              Manual focus only
              Light sensitivity (boost) Poor boost ISO Help
              40D:3,200 ISO
              550D:12,800 ISO
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Focus points Few focus points Help
              9
              Sensor size Very small sensors Help
              40D:APS-C 22.2x14.8mm
              550D:APS-C 22.3x14.9mm
              Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
              40D:1,600 ISO
              550D:6,400 ISO
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              40D:11.3 EV
              550D:11.5 EV
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              40D:10.1 MP
              550D:17.9 MP
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              22.1 bits
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              40D:64.0
              550D:66.0
              Viewfinder size Below average viewfinder size Help
              40D:0.59x
              550D:0.54x
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              40D:703 ISO
              550D:784 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon EOS 600D

              Canon EOS 600D

              Entry-level DSLR

              $520 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon EOS 1100D

              Canon EOS 1100D

              Entry-level DSLR

              $400 with 18-55mm lens

              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon EOS 60D

              Canon EOS 60D

              Pro DSLR

              $699 - $871 body only

              $999 - $1,052 with 18-135mm lens

              Weather sealed Has a weather sealed body
              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $384 - $430 with 18-55mm lens

              Movie continuous focus Can focus continuously while recording movies
              Autofocus Focuses automatically while shootting video
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $497 - $580 with 18-55mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Color depth Has significantly more color depth
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Nikon D5100

              Nikon D5100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $437 - $520 body only

              $530 - $696 with 18-55mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Color depth Has significantly more color depth
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon EOS 50D

              Canon EOS 50D

              Pro DSLR

              $1,400 body only

              Weather sealed Has a weather sealed body
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier

              Canon EOS 40D Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              No significant competitors found that are specific to the Canon EOS 40D.

              Canon EOS 550D Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              No significant competitors found that are specific to the Canon EOS 550D.

              appearance

              Canon EOS 40D Canon EOS 550D
              Canon EOS 40D Canon EOS 550D
              Canon EOS 40D Canon EOS 550D

              discussion

              Canon EOS 40D
              EOS 40D
              Canon

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              Canon EOS 550D
              EOS 550D
              Canon

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