Updated (April, 2011): Compare the Nikon D3100 vs Nikon D5100

Nikon D5000

Winner
Nikon D5000

49

vs

Nikon D3000

34

Nikon D3000

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D5000

Live view
Has live view
Preview your photos
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
Sensor size
Large sensor
APS-C 23.6x15.8mm
Sensor type
CMOS Sensor
Better in low light
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3000

Sensor size
Large sensor
APS-C 23.6x15.8mm
Size
Really small
Prosumer size 126x97x64 mm
Thickness
Thin
2.5"
Weight
Light-weight
485 g
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D3000

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Screen size Significantly larger screen 3.0" vs 2.7"
Help
More than 10% larger screen
Size Much smaller 126x97x64 mm vs 127x104x80 mm
Help
Around 30% smaller
Thickness Much thinner 2.5" vs 3.1"
Help
20% thinner
Viewfinder size Slightly larger viewfinder 0.52x vs 0.51x
Help
Around 10% larger viewfinder
Shutter lag Slightly less shutter lag 262 ms vs 276 ms
Help
Around 10% less delay when taking photos
Battery life Slightly longer battery life 550 shots vs 510 shots
Help
Around 10% more shots per battery charge
Weight Lighter 485 g vs 590 g
Help
Around 20% lighter
Nikon D3000 Learn more about
the Nikon D3000

Advantages of the Nikon D5000

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Movie format Shoots movies 720p @ 24fps vs None
Help
Shoots HD (720p) video as well as still pictures
Low light performance Significantly lower noise at high ISO 868 ISO vs 563 ISO
Help
The D5000 has a slight edge (0.6 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Live view Has live view Yes vs No
Help
Preview your photos on the camera's screen before taking them
Dynamic range More dynamic range 12.5 EV vs 11.1 EV
Help
1.4 f-stops more dynamic range
Overall image quality Significantly better image quality 72.0 vs 62.0
Help
Around 20% better image quality
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
Sensor type Has a CMOS-family sensor CMOS vs CCD
Help
CMOS-family sensors often produce better quality images
Color depth Better color depth 22.7 bits vs 22.3 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.4 more bits of color
True resolution Higher true resolution 12.2 MP vs 10 MP
Help
Capture more than 20% more detail in your photos
Startup delay Less startup delay 400 ms vs 700 ms
Help
More than 40% less delay when turning on
Continuous shooting Shoots faster 4 fps vs 3 fps
Help
More than 30% faster continuous shooting
Light sensitivity (boost) Better boost ISO 6,400 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The D5000's boost ISO is 1 f-stop better
Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity 3,200 ISO vs 1,600 ISO
Help
The D5000's maximum light sensitivity is 1 f-stop better
Nikon D5000 Learn more about
the Nikon D5000
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D3000 Nikon D3000 34
Retailer
    Style
      Color
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        vs

        49 Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000

        similarities

        Compared to recent entry-level DSLRs

        Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
        Lens availability Many lenses available Help
        205 lenses
        Sensor size Large sensors Help
        APS-C 23.6x15.8mm
        Movie format One shoots movies Help
        D3000:None
        D5000:720p @ 24fps
        Fastest shutter speed Slow max shutter speed Help
        1/4000 of a second
        Light sensitivity (boost) Poor boost ISO Help
        D3000:3,200 ISO
        D5000:6,400 ISO
        Viewfinder coverage Below average viewfinder coverage Help
        95%
        HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
        You could do HDR manually
        True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
        D3000:10 MP
        D5000:12.2 MP
        Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
        230k dots
        Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
        1
        Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
        D3000:3 fps
        D5000:4 fps
        Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
        D3000:1,600 ISO
        D5000:3,200 ISO
        Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
        Risk of blur
        Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
        Need to shelter it from weather
        Shutter lag Significant shutter lag Help
        D3000:262 ms
        D5000:276 ms
        Viewfinder size Below average viewfinder size Help
        D3000:0.52x
        D5000:0.51x
        Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
        You could stitch photos in post
        Focus points Few focus points Help
        11
        Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
        D3000:563 ISO
        D5000:868 ISO

        dxomark

        DXOMark

        competitors

        Shared Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Nikon D3100

        Nikon D3100

        Entry-level DSLR

        $273 body only

        $427 with 18-55mm lens

        Movie format Records higher quality movies
        True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
        Thickness Is thicker
        Size Is slightly larger
        Nikon D3200

        Nikon D3200

        Entry-level DSLR

        $319 body only

        $389 - $506 with 18-55mm lens

        Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
        Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
        Thickness Is thicker
        Size Is significantly larger
        Nikon D5100

        Nikon D5100

        Entry-level DSLR

        $378 - $415 body only

        $495 - $564 with 18-55mm lens

        Low light performance Is significantly less noisy at high ISO
        Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is slightly heavier
        Nikon D90

        Nikon D90

        Entry-level DSLR

        $929 body only

        $848 - $940 with 18-105mm lens

        Screen resolution Has a much higher resolution screen
        Viewfinder size Significantly larger viewfinder
        Lowest price Is significantly more expensive
        Thickness Is thicker
        Canon Rebel T3

        Canon Rebel T3

        Entry-level DSLR

        $225 - $399 body only

        $399 - $580 with 18-55mm lens

        Battery life Has a slightly longer battery life
        Lowest price Is significantly less expensive
        Thickness Is thicker
        Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
        Canon Rebel T3i

        Canon Rebel T3i

        Entry-level DSLR

        $499 - $648 body only

        $200 - $579 with 18-55mm lens

        Movie format Records higher quality movies
        Screen resolution Has a much higher resolution screen
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is slightly heavier
        Nikon D5200

        Nikon D5200

        Entry-level DSLR

        $547 body only

        $549 - $647 with 18-55mm lens

        Low light performance Is significantly less noisy at high ISO
        Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is slightly heavier

        Nikon D3000 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        No significant competitors found that are specific to the Nikon D3000.

        Nikon D5000 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        No significant competitors found that are specific to the Nikon D5000.

        appearance

        Nikon D3000 Nikon D5000
        Nikon D3000 Nikon D5000
        Nikon D3000 Nikon D5000

        discussion

        Nikon D3000
        D3000
        Nikon

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        Nikon D5000
        D5000
        Nikon

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        Showing 1 comments

        Avatar for Alex Black Alex Black (2:27 PM, March 07, 2010)
        John asked: "Hello, can you please advise if either the D3000 or the D5000 Nikon SLR cameras have the capability to display the frame (view finder) on the LCD screen while composing a picture?"

        Yes, the Nikon D5000 has "live view", and the D3000 does not. "Live view" lets you use the LCD screen on the back as a viewfinder to preview the photo you are about to take.