Updated (January, 2014): Compare the Nikon D3300 vs Sony NEX-7

Nikon D3200 vs Sony Alpha NEX-5

Winner
Nikon D3200

95

Sony Alpha NEX-5

43

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3200

Great image quality
Overall image quality
81.0
High true resolution
True resolution
24.1 MP
Wide dynamic range
Dynamic range
13.2 EV
External mic jack
External mic jack
Record higher quality audio with a microphone
 

Reasons to buy the Sony Alpha NEX-5

Size
Really small
Compact 111x59x38 mm
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
HDR
In-camera HDR
Combines multiple exposures
Panorama
In-camera panoramas
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Nikon D3200. Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Sony Alpha NEX-5.

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D3200

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Shutter lag
Much less shutter lag
276 ms vs 670 ms
Help
2.4x less delay when taking photos
Autofocus
Faster autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Lens availability
Much more lenses available
205 lenses vs 21 lenses
Help
Around 10x more lenses available
Overall image quality
Better image quality
81.0 vs 69.0
Help
Around 20% better image quality
External mic jack
Has an external mic jack
Yes vs No
Help
Record high quality audio with an external microphone
Supports 24p
Supports 24p
Yes vs No
Help
Get that real film feel
True resolution
Significantly higher true resolution
24.1 MP vs 14 MP
Help
Capture more than 70% more detail in your photos
Startup delay
Less startup delay
400 ms vs 1000 ms
Help
2.5x less delay when turning on
Battery life
Longer battery life
540 shots vs 330 shots
Help
More than 60% more shots per battery charge
Color depth
Better color depth
24.1 bits vs 22.2 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1.9 more bits of color
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
13.2 EV vs 12.2 EV
Help
1 f-stop more dynamic range
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Viewfinder
Has a viewfinder
Pentamirror vs None
Help
A viewfinder can help save battery life by keeping the screen turned off
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
1,131 ISO vs 796 ISO
Help
The D3200 has a slight edge (0.5 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Light sensitivity (boost)
Has boost ISO
12,800 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Nikon D3200 Learn more about
the Nikon D3200

Advantages of the Sony NEX-5

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3D
Takes 3D photos
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple photos into a 3D image
Size
Significantly smaller
111x59x38 mm vs 125x96x76 mm
Help
3.7x smaller
Screen flips out
Has a flip-out screen
Yes vs No
Help
Flip-out screens can be helpful when composing tricky shots or taking movies
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Thickness
Significantly thinner
1.5" vs 3"
Help
2x thinner
Weight
Lighter
287 g vs 505 g
Help
More than 40% lighter
Continuous shooting
Shoots faster
7 fps vs 4 fps
Help
Around 80% faster continuous shooting
Focus points
Slightly more focus points
25 vs 11
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
12,800 ISO vs 6,400 ISO
Help
The NEX-5's maximum light sensitivity is 1 f-stop better
Sony Alpha NEX-5 Learn more about
the Sony NEX-5
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent digital cameras, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D3200 Nikon D3200 95
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    Style
      Color
        You save
        vs
        43 Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony Alpha NEX-5
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
              You save

              similarities

              Compared to recent digital cameras

              Common Strengths
              Screen resolution High resolution screens Help
              D3200921k dots
              NEX-5920k dots
              Interchangeable lenses Both support interchangeable lenses, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
              Many lenses to choose from
              Startup delay Minimal startup delay Help
              D3200400 ms
              NEX-51000 ms
              Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
              Better editing
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              Common Weaknesses
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              D32001
              NEX-50
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $629 body only

              $549 - $630 with 18-55mm lens

              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is significantly heavier
              Nikon D5100

              Nikon D5100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $354 body only

              $600 with 18-55mm, 55-200mm lenses

              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $259 body only

              $408 with 18-55mm lens

              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D5300

              Nikon D5300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $647 body only

              $570 - $747 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen size Has a slightly larger screen
              Shutter lag Has slightly less shutter lag
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Canon EOS Rebel T2i

              Canon Rebel T2i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $799 with 18-55mm lens

              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Thickness Is thicker
              Sony Alpha A5000

              Sony Alpha A5000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $291 body only

              $330 - $398 with 16-50mm lens

              External flash Doesn't support an external flash
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              Sony Alpha A6000

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $548 body only

              $698 with 16-50mm lens

              Image stabilization Has image stabilization
              Viewfinder coverage Much better viewfinder coverage

              Nikon D3200 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $627 body only

              $400 - $497 with 18-55mm lens

              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Battery life Longer battery life
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 body only

              $399 - $400 with 18-55mm lens

              Weight Slightly lighter
              Overall image quality Significantly worse image quality
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              Nikon D5200

              Nikon D5200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $497 - $547 body only

              $499 - $550 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen flips out Has a flip-out screen
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Size Slightly larger
              Shutter lag Slightly more shutter lag
              Canon Rebel T5i

              Canon Rebel T5i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $649 - $650 body only

              $649 - $650 with 18-55mm lens

              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Screen flips out Has a flip-out screen
              Overall image quality Significantly worse image quality
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range

              Sony Alpha NEX-5 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony NEX-5N

              Sony NEX-5N

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $689 body only

              $803 with 16-50mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Startup delay More startup delay
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Sony NEX-7

              Sony NEX-7

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $580 body only

              $498 - $699 with 18-55mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
              Weight Slightly heavier
              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $192 body only

              $320 with 18-55mm lens

              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Thickness Slightly thinner
              Movie format Lower resolution movies
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Sony Alpha NEX-6

              Sony Alpha NEX-6

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $673 body only

              $887 with 16-50mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
              Sony NEX-F3

              Sony NEX-F3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $180 body only

              $300 with 18-55mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Startup delay More startup delay
              Continuous shooting Shoots slower

              appearance

              Nikon D3200 Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Nikon D3200 Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Nikon D3200 Sony Alpha NEX-5

              discussion

              Nikon D3200
              D3200
              Nikon

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              Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Alpha NEX-5
              Sony

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