Visualizing the world of Digital SLRs with Open Source Software

People have now compared over 20,000 different combinations of cameras at!  
We’ve been keeping track of which cameras get compared the most often, as seen on snapsort’s homepage. This weekend I spent some time trying to use this data to visualize cameras and their relationships to one another, the premise being that if two cameras are compared to each other a lot they’re likely very similar.
Here are two pictures of all of the DSLRs from the last two years, and their relationships to each other based on comparisons made at
  • Each dot is a camera, cameras are color coded by brand (NikonCanonPanasonicSonyOlympusLeicaOthers)
  • Lines between cameras represent comparisons made, the thicker the line the more comparisons made between those two cameras
Low res without labels:
High res with labels:
(be sure to click and view at 100% zoom)

  • The visualization seems to go from low end at the left to high end at the right
  • Nikon and Canon are the center of the world 🙂  You can see tight competition between the Nikon D90 and the Canon Rebel T1i, and the Nikon D700 vs Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • The bottom left is occupied by Sony, you can see their line up from low end to high end, all competing with Nikon and Canon SLRs but not a lot
  • At the top you see the micro four thirds cameras from Panasonic and Olympus, such as the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 and the Olympus PEN E-P2, competing with each other and sometimes the bigger SLRs
  • To the far right there are a couple of Leicas mostly on their own
  • Top left corner you see a number of Olympus cameras, a low end Sony, and a couple Pentax
How these were made
  • Created graph files in GML format
  • Imported them into Gephi and rendered using their layout tools
  • Exported to SVG
  • Rasterized to PNG using Gimp