Evolutionary biologists are increasingly comparing gene expression patterns across species. Due to the way in which expression assays are normalized, such studies provide no direct information about expression per gene copy (dosage responses) or per cell and can give a misleading picture of genes that are differentially expressed. We describe an assay for estimating relative expression per cell. When used in conjunction with transcript profiling data, it is possible to compare the sizes of whole transcriptomes, which in turn makes it possible to compare expression per cell for each gene in the transcript profiling data set. We applied this approach, using quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and high throughput RNA sequencing, to a recently formed allopolyploid and showed that its leaf transcriptome was approximately 1.4-fold larger than either progenitor transcriptome (70% of the sum of the progenitor transcriptomes). In contrast, the allopolyploid genome is 94.3% as large as the sum of its progenitor genomes and retains ≥93.5% of the sum of its progenitor gene complements. Thus, “transcriptome downsizing” is greater than genome downsizing. Using this transcriptome size estimate, we inferred dosage responses for several thousand genes and showed that the majority exhibit partial dosage compensation. Homoeologue silencing is nonrandomly distributed across dosage responses, with genes showing extreme responses in either direction significantly more likely to have a silent homoeologue. This experimental approach will add value to transcript profiling experiments involving interspecies and interploidy comparisons by converting expression per transcriptome to expression per genome, eliminating the need for assumptions about transcriptome size.