How to Gauge Camera Size Before Ordering Online

In the market for a new digital camera? If you're smart, you'll buy it online, where prices are usually significantly lower than in retail stores.

Just one problem: it's hard to gauge the size of a camera just by looking at a few specs or photos. How does model A really compare with model B? And model C? And models D-Z?

Enter CameraSize.com, a free digital camera comparison tool. True to its name, the site lets you put two camera models side by side to gauge their relative sizes. It also gives you a choice of viewing angles (front, back, top, and left/right, though not all views are available for all models), a choice of colors (where applicable), and, coolest of all, a draggable adult male hand that lets you see how well (or poorly) a camera will fit in your palm.

All you do is choose two cameras from a drop-down list. The site has dozens of current and popular models, everything from the Canon EOS 40D to the Sony SLT-A77.

That step shows you the two models side by side or overlayed so you can see how they compare, size-wise. The site also provides specifics about the physical differences between the two, like "Canon EOS 40D is 2% (2.9 mm) wider and 4% (3.8 mm) taller than Sony SLT-A77."

There's even an AA battery shown alongside the images to give you another perspective on size.

You can click an Info button to load user reviews from Amazon and a magnifying glass for a "life-size" (i.e. 1:1) view of the camera, one that's calculated based on the actual size of your monitor.

In short, this is one handy site for anyone researching a new digital camera--and concerned about size. Worth bookmarking!

Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at hasslefree@pcworld.com, or try the treasure trove of helpful folks in the PC World Community Forums. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter e-mailed to you each week.

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