Updated (September, 2012): Compare the Canon PowerShot G15 vs Nikon D3200

Nikon D3100 vs Canon PowerShot G12

Winner
Nikon D3100

54

Canon PowerShot G12

52

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3100

Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Autofocuses shooting video
Badge
Contrast detection
 

Reasons to buy the Canon PowerShot G12

Size
Really small
Mid size 112x76x48 mm
Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Lens
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
HDR
In-camera HDR
Combines multiple exposures

differences

Advantages of the Canon G12

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Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Lens vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Size
Smaller
112x76x48 mm vs 124x96x73 mm
Help
2.2x smaller
Screen flips out
Has a flip-out screen
Yes vs No
Help
Flip-out screens can be helpful when composing tricky shots or taking movies
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Screen resolution
Higher resolution screen
461k dots vs 230k dots
Help
More than 2x higher resolution screen
Thickness
Thinner
1.9" vs 2.9"
Help
More than 30% thinner
Weight
Lighter
401 g vs 505 g
Help
More than 20% lighter
Canon PowerShot G12 Learn more about
the Canon G12

Advantages of the Nikon D3100

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Overall image quality
Significantly better image quality
67.0 vs 47.0
Help
More than 40% better image quality
Startup delay
Much less startup delay
400 ms vs 2700 ms
Help
6.8x less delay when turning on
Autofocus
Faster autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Color depth
Better color depth
22.5 bits vs 20.4 bits
Help
Distinguishes 2.1 more bits of color
Movie format
Higher resolution movies
1080p @ 24fps vs 720p @ 24fps
Help
Shoots higher resolution Full HD (1080p) video
Screen size
Larger screen
3.0" vs 2.8"
Help
Around 10% larger screen
Shutter lag
Less shutter lag
279 ms vs 380 ms
Help
Around 30% less delay when taking photos
Interchangeable lenses
Has interchangeable lenses
Yes vs No
Help
Can take advantage of a variety of lenses
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
919 ISO vs 161 ISO
Help
The D3100 has excellent image quality 2.5 f-stops higher ISO than the G12
Battery life
Longer battery life
550 shots vs 350 shots
Help
Around 60% more shots per battery charge
True resolution
Higher true resolution
14.2 MP vs 10 MP
Help
Capture more than 40% more detail in your photos
Sensor type
Has a CMOS-family sensor
CMOS vs CCD
Help
CMOS-family sensors often produce better quality images
Lowest price
Cheaper
$231.23 vs $961.91
Help
The best price we've seen is $731 cheaper (4.2x less)
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
11.3 EV vs 11.2 EV
Help
0.1 f-stops more dynamic range
Viewfinder
Has a through-the-lens viewfinder
Pentamirror vs Tunnel
Help
Through-the-lens viewfinders let you see exactly what your photo will look like
Continuous shooting
Shoots slightly faster
3 fps vs 2 fps
Help
50% faster continuous shooting
Light sensitivity (boost)
Has boost ISO
12,800 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Longest exposure
Longer exposures
30s vs 15s
Help
2x longer exposures
Nikon D3100 Learn more about
the Nikon D3100
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Canon PowerShot G12 Canon PowerShot G12 52
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    Style
      Color
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        vs
        54 Nikon D3100 Nikon D3100
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
              You save

              similarities

              Compared to recent digital cameras

              Common Strengths
              Supports 24p Both support 24p, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
              For that film look
              Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
              Better editing
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Viewfinder Viewfinders Help
              G12Tunnel
              D3100Pentamirror
              Common Weaknesses
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              G1211.2 EV
              D310011.3 EV
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post
              Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
              G122 fps
              D31003 fps
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              G12461k dots
              D3100230k dots

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 - $539 body only

              $549 - $599 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $677 body only

              $420 - $497 with 18-55mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              Thickness Is thicker
              Size Is slightly larger

              Canon PowerShot G12 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon PowerShot G16

              Canon PowerShot G16

              Pro digicam

              $449

              Aperture Significantly wider aperture
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              Canon PowerShot G15

              Canon PowerShot G15

              Pro digicam

              $487

              Aperture Significantly wider aperture
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Canon PowerShot G11

              Canon PowerShot G11

              Pro digicam

              $574

              Battery life Much longer battery life
              Startup delay Slightly less startup delay
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              HDR Lacks in-camera HDR
              Canon PowerShot G1X

              Canon PowerShot G1X

              Boutique

              $399

              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Macro focus Much worse macro capability
              Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
              Canon PowerShot G10

              Canon PowerShot G10

              Pro digicam

              $790

              Battery life Much longer battery life
              Screen size Larger screen
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              Overall image quality Worse image quality

              Nikon D3100 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $290 body only

              $379 - $447 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 body only

              $399 - $419 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Higher resolution screen
              True resolution Higher true resolution
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              Nikon D5100

              Nikon D5100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $354 body only

              $630 with 18-55mm, 55-200mm lenses

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Size Slightly larger
              Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
              Canon Rebel T3

              Canon Rebel T3

              Entry-level DSLR

              $339 body only

              $419 with 18-55mm lens

              Battery life Longer battery life
              Startup delay Slightly less startup delay
              Autofocus Lacks video autofocus
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              Nikon D90

              Nikon D90

              Entry-level DSLR

              $696 body only

              $891 with 55-300mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Built-in focus motor Has a built-in focus motor
              Autofocus Lacks video autofocus
              Movie format Lower resolution movies

              appearance

              Canon PowerShot G12 Nikon D3100
              Canon PowerShot G12 Nikon D3100
              Canon PowerShot G12 Nikon D3100

              discussion

              Canon PowerShot G12
              PowerShot G12
              Canon

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              Nikon D3100
              D3100
              Nikon

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