As we all know, Nikon and Canon are two major camera manufacturers who always compete in offering their products in every segment of the digital SLR camera market. Not long after Canon introduced its latest digital SLR camera for the entry-level segment, the Canon EOS Rebel T3i, Nikon also introduced a new entry-level digital SLR camera, namely the Nikon D5100. Both the T3i and the D5100 are flagship cameras of Canon’s and Nikon’s entry-level digital SLR camera line.
In Nikon’s product line, the Nikon D5100 sits between the beginner-friendly Nikon D3100 and the higher-end Nikon D7000. The D5100 also replaces the Nikon D5000, which was launched almost 2 years ago. Considering that a 2-year period is a long time for a digital SLR camera life-cycle, which is usually only 18 months, we expected a lot of improvements in the D5100, and Nikon didn’t disappoint us. The D5100 is literally an improvement over the previous D5000 in almost every respect.
The Nikon D5100 features a 16.2-megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor, which is very similar to the Nikon D7000’s sensor, but not exactly the same. The D5100 also inherits the D7000’s 14-bit RAW shooting, which is usually only found on higher-end Nikon digital SLR cameras. Based on those specifications, you could expect a similar image quality from both cameras. Other significant improvements that the D5100 offers over its predecessor include a the company’s Expeed 2 processor, a fully-articulated 3.0-inch LCD screen with 920,000 dot resolution, and 1080p full High Definition video recording capability at 30 frames per second.
Unfortunately, the Nikon D5100 still comes with an 11-point autofocus system and not the 39-point autofocus system like the one we have seen on the Nikon D7000. At its price range, it is also understandable that the D5100 still doesn’t have a magnesium alloy body. Apart from those shortcomings, the D5100 is still an excellent entry-level digital SLR camera. It offers a lot of features which are usually only found in higher-end Nikon SLR cameras, and those features will certainly satisfy anyone looking for a digital SLR camera with an entry-level price.