Last Updated on 04/05/2011 by Chris Gampat
With the recent announcement of the Nikon D5100’s technical specs, it only makes sense that some consumers may be confused about whether to purchase the Nikon D5100 or D7000. Here’s a quick comparison of the two to help you figure out which one is right for you.
Before we begin, you can check out the progress of the Nikon D7000 review in the following links:
Day 1: Our initial impressions
Day 2: High ISOs
Day 3: Tested for product photography
Day 4: Tourist time
Day 5: Leisurely walking around
The D5100 seems to have a USB port, A/V out, GPS capabilities with Nikon’s units, HDMI out and a port for the newly announced ME-1 microphone as well.
The grip seems to be very standard with the SD card port on the right side.
The top of the camera is what seems to make the difference. The mode dial is on the right side, as opposed to the left with the D7000. Additionally, this mode dial has more modes on it: which is easier for consumers. The D7000 is targeted towards more advanced users and that is why its dial is more clutter-free. Below is the D7000’s top view where you also see a back and front dial for changing apertures and shutter speeds. The D5100 doesn’t have that.
Clearly the D7000 is targeted towards more advanced users and the design harkens to the higher range cameras like the D300s.
Once again though, the D5100 seems to be squarely aimed at cameras like the Canon Rebel T3i which was recently reviewed here.
The new vari-angle LCD screen will make this camera a joy to shoot movies with. This means that Nikon is now taking more serious steps towards shooting video and targeting videographers.
|Specs||Nikon D7000||Nikon D5100|
|Megapixels||16.2 MP CMOS 2.016 pixel RGB sensor (DX)||16.2MP DX-format CMOS sensor|
|Processor||EXPEED 2||EXPEED 2|
|Video||1080p HD with full time AF MPEG 4, 20min movie recording, 1080 at 24p, AVC, 720 at 24 and 30p. The ability to save individual frames as a JPEG||Stunning Full 1080p HD Movies with Full Time Autofocus, 20 mins (30p and 24p)|
|ISO Range||ISO 25,600 at hi2||ISO sensitivity 100-6400, expandable to ISO 25,600 equivalent|
|Autofocus points||39 AF point, 9 cross type sensors||Fast 11-point Autofocus System
|LCD Screen||3″ fixed LCD screen||3”, 921,000-dot Super-Density horizontal type Vari-Angle LCD|
|Memory||Twin SD card port||Single SD card port|
|Metering||2,016 pixel RGB 3D Matrix Metering System||Nikon 420-pixel RGB 3D Color Matrix Metering II|
D5100 Image Samples
The first thing I thought of when I saw this image was:
– it’s gorgeous
– how many wedding photographers would shoot with a Nikon D5100?
Foodies on the other hand would probably shoot with this camera.
Additionally, I see someone perhaps wanting to photograph their child’s dance performance.
This is where it all comes down to the clear divisions: The Nikon D5100 is targeted more towards HD video enthusiasts and beginners while the D7000 is targeted more towards semi-professionals and advanced amateurs. The D7000 has build quality that is on par with it’s bigger brother, the D300s as well as many more professional features such as faster FPS shooting, more autofocus points, a more advanced metering system, and twin SD cards.
The vari-angle LCD screen of the Nikon D5100 is much better for shooting videos and for discreet street photography. Additionally, the LCD screen can really come in handy when shooting difficult angles. Indeed, it is more akin to the Nikon D3100 which we reviewed, so you may want to take a look at that.
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