Updated (October, 2012): Compare the Nikon D4 vs Nikon D5200

Nikon D4

Winner
Nikon D4

102

vs

Nikon D5100

69

Nikon D5100

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D4

Low light performance
Low noise at high ISO
2,965 ISO
Overall image quality
Great image quality
89.0
Color depth
Great color depth
24.7 bits
Dynamic range
Wide dynamic range
13.1 EV
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D5100

Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
HDR
In-camera HDR
Combines multiple exposures
External mic jack
External mic jack
Record higher quality audio with a microphone
 
Differences | Recommendations | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D4

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Low light performance Much lower noise at high ISO 2,965 ISO vs 1,183 ISO
Help
The D4 has excellent image quality 1.3 f-stops higher ISO than the D5100
Battery life Much longer battery life 2600 shots vs 660 shots
Help
Around 4x more shots per battery charge
Viewfinder size Much larger viewfinder 0.70x vs 0.51x
Help
Around 90% larger viewfinder
Continuous shooting Shoots much faster 11 fps vs 4 fps
Help
Around 3x faster continuous shooting
Overall image quality Better image quality 89.0 vs 80.0
Help
More than 10% better image quality
Screen size Significantly larger screen 3.2" vs 3.0"
Help
Around 10% larger screen
Weather sealed Weather sealed Yes vs No
Help
Sealed to shoot in the rain
Sensor size Much larger sensor Full frame 36.0x24.0mm vs APS-C 23.6x15.6mm
Help
Around 2.5x larger sensor
Focus points Significantly more focus points 51 vs 11
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Color depth Better color depth 24.7 bits vs 23.5 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1.2 more bits of color
Cross type focus points More cross-type focus points 15 vs 1
Help
Grab focus in difficult situations
Viewfinder coverage Much better viewfinder coverage 100% vs 95%
Help
Around 10% better viewfinder coverage
Light sensitivity (boost) Better boost ISO 204,800 ISO vs 25,600 ISO
Help
The D4's boost ISO is 3 f-stops better
Shutter lag Less shutter lag 208 ms vs 273 ms
Help
More than 20% less delay when taking photos
Viewfinder Has a pentaprism viewfinder Pentaprism vs Pentamirror
Help
Pentaprism viewfinders are typically brighter
Startup delay Less startup delay 300 ms vs 500 ms
Help
40% less delay when turning on
Built-in focus motor Has a built-in focus motor Yes vs No
Help
Autofocuses with all autofocus lenses
Storage slots Has more storage slots 2 vs 1
Help
More slots allows storing more images without switching memory cards
Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity 12,800 ISO vs 6,400 ISO
Help
The D4's maximum light sensitivity is 1 f-stop better
Fastest shutter speed Much faster max shutter speed 1/8000s vs 1/4000s
Help
2x faster max shutter speed
Nikon D4 Learn more about
the Nikon D4

Advantages of the Nikon D5100

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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
Size Much smaller 127x96x78 mm vs 160x157x91 mm
Help
2.4x smaller
Lens availability Significantly more lenses available 205 lenses vs 152 lenses
Help
More than 30% more lenses available
Weight Much lighter 560 g vs 1,340 g
Help
2.4x lighter
Thickness Much thinner 3.1" vs 3.6"
Help
More than 10% thinner
Lowest price Significantly cheaper $378.00 vs $4,602.57
Help
The best price we've seen is $4,225 cheaper (12.2x less)
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
Nikon D5100 Learn more about
the Nikon D5100
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D4 Nikon D4 102
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        69 Nikon D5100 Nikon D5100
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              similarities

              Compared to recent DSLRs

              Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              D4:16.2 MP
              D5100:16.1 MP
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $319 - $567 body only

              $477 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              HDR Lacks a built in HDR feature
              Nikon D5200

              Nikon D5200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $497 body only

              $597 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Shutter lag Has significantly more shutter lag
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $439 - $547 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Panorama Creates panoramas in-camera
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              HDR Lacks a built in HDR feature
              Nikon D5300

              Nikon D5300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $697 - $747 body only

              $629 - $847 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Has a slightly higher resolution screen
              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay
              Nikon D90

              Nikon D90

              Entry-level DSLR

              $792 body only

              $950 with 18-105mm lens

              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D7000

              Nikon D7000

              Entry-level DSLR

              $625 body only

              $886 with 55-200mm lens

              Weight Is slightly heavier
              HDR Lacks a built in HDR feature
              Nikon D7100

              Nikon D7100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $947 body only

              $1,247 with 18-140mm lens

              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag

              Nikon D4 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon EOS 1D X

              Canon EOS 1D X

              Pro DSLR

              $6,799 body only

              Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity
              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Overall image quality Worse image quality
              Nikon D4s

              Nikon D4s

              Pro DSLR

              $6,497 body only

              Light sensitivity (boost) Better boost ISO
              Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Lowest price More expensive
              Nikon D800

              Nikon D800

              Pro DSLR

              $2,446 - $2,891 body only

              True resolution Much higher true resolution
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Battery life Much shorter battery life
              Continuous shooting Shoots much slower
              Nikon D810

              Nikon D810

              Pro DSLR

              $3,297 body only

              $4,890 - $5,187 with 24-70mm lens

              True resolution Much higher true resolution
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Battery life Much shorter battery life
              Continuous shooting Shoots much slower
              Nikon D750

              Nikon D750

              Pro DSLR

              $2,297 body only

              $2,997 - $3,040 with 24-120mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Screen flips out Has a flip-out screen
              Battery life Much shorter battery life
              Continuous shooting Shoots significantly slower

              Nikon D5100 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 - $550 body only

              $549 - $575 with 18-55mm lens

              Screen resolution Higher resolution screen
              True resolution Higher true resolution
              Overall image quality Significantly worse image quality
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $549 - $700 body only

              $489 - $820 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Higher true resolution
              Weight Lighter
              Overall image quality Significantly worse image quality
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $275 - $387 body only

              $401 - $427 with 18-55mm lens

              Startup delay Slightly less startup delay
              Thickness Thinner
              Screen resolution Much lower resolution screen
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range

              appearance

              Nikon D4 Nikon D5100
              Nikon D4 Nikon D5100
              Nikon D4 Nikon D5100

              discussion

              Nikon D4
              D4
              Nikon

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              Nikon D5100
              D5100
              Nikon

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