Updated (October, 2012): Compare the Nikon D5200 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

Nikon D5100

Winner
Nikon D5100

81

vs

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3

36

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D5100

Dynamic range
Wide dynamic range
13 EV
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
HDR
In-camera HDR
Combines multiple exposures
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
 

Reasons to buy the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3

Size
Really small
Standard size 115x84x47 mm
Touch screen
Touch screen
Less buttons
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
3D
Takes 3D photos
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D5100

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Overall image quality Significantly better image quality 80.0 vs 56.0
Help
More than 40% better image quality
Autofocus Faster autofocus Phase detection vs Contrast detection
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Catch candid moments easily
Dynamic range More dynamic range 13 EV vs 10.6 EV
Help
2.4 f-stops more dynamic range
Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen 920k dots vs 460k dots
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2x higher resolution screen
Supports 24p Supports 24p Yes vs No
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Get that real film feel
External mic jack Has an external mic jack Yes vs No
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Record high quality audio with an external microphone
Lens availability Much more lenses available 205 lenses vs 40 lenses
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More than 5x more lenses available
Color depth Better color depth 23.5 bits vs 21 bits
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Distinguishes 2.5 more bits of color
HDR Has in-camera HDR Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Battery life Significantly longer battery life 660 shots vs 270 shots
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Around 2.5x more shots per battery charge
Startup delay Less startup delay 500 ms vs 1400 ms
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2.8x less delay when turning on
Low light performance Lower noise at high ISO 1,183 ISO vs 667 ISO
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The D5100 has a slight edge (0.8 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Sensor size Larger sensor APS-C 23.6x15.6mm vs Four thirds 17.3x13.0mm
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More than 60% larger sensor
Viewfinder Has an optical viewfinder Pentamirror vs Digital
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Optical viewfinders save battery life and are more detailed
Shutter lag Slightly less shutter lag 273 ms vs 293 ms
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Around 10% less delay when taking photos
Cross type focus points Slightly more cross-type focus points 1 vs 0
Help
Grab focus in difficult situations
Nikon D5100 Learn more about
the Nikon D5100

Advantages of the Panasonic DMC-G3

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Lens focus motor Has a built-in focus motor Yes vs No
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Autofocuses with all autofocus lenses
Touch screen Has a touch screen Yes vs No
Help
Fewer buttons to worry about and direct interaction with camera menus
Size Significantly smaller 115x84x47 mm vs 127x96x78 mm
Help
2.1x smaller
3D Takes 3D photos Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple photos into a 3D image
Weight Lighter 336 g vs 560 g
Help
40% lighter
Thickness Thinner 1.9" vs 3.1"
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More than 40% thinner
Focus points More focus points 23 vs 11
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Set focus accurately within the frame
Longest exposure Longer exposures 60s vs 30s
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2x longer exposures
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 Learn more about
the Panasonic DMC-G3
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D5100 Nikon D5100 81
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      Color
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        vs

        36 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
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          Style
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              similarities

              Compared to recent digital cameras

              Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
              Screen flips out Flip-out screens Help
              Great for movies
              Interchangeable lenses Both support interchangeable lenses, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
              Many lenses to choose from
              True resolution Capture very high resolution images Help
              D5100:16.1 MP
              DMC-G3:15.8 MP
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
              Better editing
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Viewfinder Viewfinders Help
              D5100:Pentamirror
              DMC-G3:Digital
              Sensor type Better sensor types Help
              Better in low light
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              D5100:1
              DMC-G3:0
              Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
              4 fps

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $497 - $580 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Canon Rebel T3i

              Canon Rebel T3i

              Entry-level DSLR

              $499 - $749 body only

              $550 - $600 with 18-55mm lens

              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $392 - $430 with 18-55mm lens

              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Canon Rebel T3

              Canon Rebel T3

              Entry-level DSLR

              $276 - $298 body only

              $399 - $450 with 18-55mm lens

              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              Thickness Is thicker

              Nikon D5100 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D5200

              Nikon D5200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $647 body only

              $747 with 18-55mm lens

              3D Takes 3D photos
              True resolution Significantly higher true resolution
              Battery life Shorter battery life
              Shutter lag Slightly more shutter lag
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $647 with 18-55mm lens

              Lens focus motor Has a built-in focus motor
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              Lowest price More expensive
              Nikon D90

              Nikon D90

              Entry-level DSLR

              $629 body only

              $816 - $848 with 18-105mm lens

              Lens focus motor Has a built-in focus motor
              Battery life Longer battery life
              Movie format Lower resolution movies
              Autofocus Lacks video autofocus
              Nikon D7000

              Nikon D7000

              Entry-level DSLR

              $721 - $1,050 body only

              $900 - $1,385 with 18-105mm lens

              Lens focus motor Has a built-in focus motor
              Weather sealed Weather sealed
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              HDR Lacks in-camera HDR

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $309 body only

              $415 with 14-42mm lens

              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Size Larger
              Thickness Thicker
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $1,098 - $1,247 body only

              $1,349 with 14-140mm lens

              Screen type Has an OLED screen
              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Size Significantly larger
              Thickness Thicker
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $900 with 14-42mm lens

              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Startup delay Less startup delay
              Movie format Lower resolution movies
              Size Larger
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $648 with 14-42mm lens

              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Size Larger
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $510 with 14-42mm lens

              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor

              appearance

              Nikon D5100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
              Nikon D5100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
              Nikon D5100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3

              discussion

              Nikon D5100
              D5100
              Nikon

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              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
              Lumix DMC-G3
              Panasonic

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              Showing 2 comments

              Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (9:12 PM, April 18, 2012)
              Thanks! We just launched a new site, Sortable.com which allows you to search and compare more than just cameras. 
               
              Johan (9:06 PM, April 18, 2012)
              This way of comparing can be very helpful.....provided that you really know what you are looking for! In my case, small size and less weight are more important than some other criteria. This leads to weighing cameras differently than you do and therefore also to a different outcome of the question "Which camera is best?". Yet, I praise your website highly for putting the data together and for presenting these in a totally new, visual and engaging way. Keep up the good work!