Nikon Z50 vs Sony Alpha a6500 Comparison

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Z50 image
vs
Alpha a6500 image
Nikon Z50 Sony Alpha a6500
Megapixels
20.90
24.20
Image resolution
5568 x 3712
6000 x 4000

Sensor

Sensor type
CMOS
CMOS
Sensor size
23.5 x 15.7 mm
23.5 x 15.6 mm
Sensor resolution
5600 x 3733
6045 x 4003
Diagonal
28.26 mm
28.21 mm
Compare sensor size:

Sensor Size

Actual size is set to screen
vs
1.01:1
(ratio)
Nikon Z50 Sony Alpha a6500
Surface area:
368.95 mm² vs 366.60 mm²
Difference: 2.35 mm² (0.6%)
Z50 sensor is slightly bigger than Alpha a6500 sensor (only 0.6% difference).
Note: You are comparing cameras of different generations. There is a 3 year gap between Nikon Z50 (2019) and Sony Alpha a6500 (2016). All things being equal, newer sensor generations generally outperform the older.
Pixel pitch
4.2 µm
3.89 µm
Difference: 0.31 µm (8%)
Pixel pitch of Z50 is ~8% higher than Alpha a6500's.
Pixel area
17.64 µm²
15.13 µm²
Relative pixel sizes:
vs
Pixel area difference: 2.51 µm² (17%)
Pixel on Nikon Z50 sensor is ~17% bigger than Sony Alpha a6500's.
Pixel density
5.68 MP/cm²
6.62 MP/cm²
Difference: 0.94 µm (17%)
Sony Alpha a6500 has ~17% higher pixel density than Nikon Z50's.

Specs

Nikon Z50
Sony Alpha a6500
Crop factor
1.53
1.53
Megapixels
21.51
25.00
Optical zoom
n/a
 
Digital zoom
n/a
ISO range
Auto, 100-51200 (expands to 204,800)
Auto, 100-25600 (expands to 51200)
RAW support
Manual focus
Focus range
n/a
Macro focus range
n/a
Focal length
n/a
Aperture priority
Max. aperture
n/a
Metering types
Multi, Center-weighted, Highlight-weighted, Spot
Multi, Center-weighted, Spot
Exposure compensation
±5 EV (in 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
±5 EV (in 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
Shutter priority
Shutter speed (min)
30s
30s
Shutter speed (max)
1/4000s
1/4000s
Built-in flash
External flash
Viewfinder type
Electronic
Electronic
White balance
8
8
Screen size
3.2"
3"
Screen resolution
1,036,800 dots
921,600 dots
Video available
Max. video resolution
3840x2160 (30p/​25p/​24p)
3840x2160 (30p/25p/24p)
Storage type
SD/SDHC/SDXC
SD/SDHC/SDXC/MS PRO Duo
USB Version
2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI
Wireless support
GPS
Battery model
EN-EL25
NP-FW50
Battery type
lithium-ion
Lithium-ion
Weight
450g
453g
Body size
126.5 x 93.5 x 60 mm
120 x 66.9 x 53.3 mm
Released
2019
2016


Compare various cameras

vs

Diagonal

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

Nikon Z50 diagonal

w = 23.50 mm
h = 15.70 mm
Diagonal =  23.50² + 15.70²   = 28.26 mm

Sony Alpha a6500 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.

Z50 sensor area

Width = 23.50 mm
Height = 15.70 mm

Surface area = 23.50 × 15.70 = 368.95 mm²

Alpha a6500 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

Z50 pixel pitch

Sensor width = 23.50 mm
Sensor resolution width = 5600 pixels
Pixel pitch =   23.50  × 1000  = 4.2 µm
5600

Alpha a6500 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

Z50 pixel area

Pixel pitch = 4.2 µm

Pixel area = 4.2² = 17.64 µm²

Alpha a6500 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

Z50 pixel density

Sensor resolution width = 5600 pixels
Sensor width = 2.35 cm

Pixel density = (5600 / 2.35)² / 1000000 = 5.68 MP/cm²

Alpha a6500 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

Z50 sensor resolution

Sensor width = 23.50 mm
Sensor height = 15.70 mm
Effective megapixels = 20.90
r = 23.50/15.70 = 1.5
X =  20.90 × 1000000  = 3733
1.5
Resolution horizontal: X × r = 3733 × 1.5 = 5600
Resolution vertical: X = 3733

Sensor resolution = 5600 x 3733

Alpha a6500 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


Z50 crop factor

Sensor diagonal in mm = 28.26 mm
Crop factor =   43.27  = 1.53
28.26

Alpha a6500 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).

Z50 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 Z50, take the aperture of the lens you're using and multiply it with crop factor.

Crop factor for Nikon Z50 is 1.53

Alpha a6500 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 Sony Alpha a6500, take the aperture of the lens you're using and multiply it with crop factor.

Crop factor for Sony Alpha a6500 is 1.53

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