Updated (April 2009): Compare the Nikon D5000 vs Nikon D90

Nikon D90 vs Nikon D5000

Winner
Nikon D90

68

Nikon D5000

50

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Nikon D90

Large viewfinder
Viewfinder size
0.63x
Great viewfinder
Viewfinder
Pentaprism
Barely any delay taking photos
Shutter lag
208 ms shutter lag
Built-in focus motor
Badge
Autofocuses with more lenses
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D5000

Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Nikon D5000.
Explore our gallery of 47 sample photos taken by the Nikon D90.

competitors

Nikon D90 Competitors

Nikon D3300

Nikon D3300

Entry-level DSLR

$300 body only

$399 - $547 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Low light performance Significantly lower noise at high ISO
Viewfinder size Significantly smaller viewfinder
Nikon D7200

Nikon D7200

Entry-level DSLR

$1,052 - $1,097 body only

$1,397 with 18-140mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Low light performance Significantly lower noise at high ISO
Viewfinder size Smaller viewfinder
Nikon D7000

Nikon D7000

Entry-level DSLR

$495 body only

$577 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Autofocus Video autofocus
Shutter lag More shutter lag

Nikon D5000 Competitors

Nikon D3200

Nikon D3200

Entry-level DSLR

$249 body only

$329 - $447 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
Nikon D3300

Nikon D3300

Entry-level DSLR

$300 body only

$399 - $547 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Low light performance Much lower noise at high ISO
Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
Nikon D3100

Nikon D3100

Entry-level DSLR

$360 body only

$555 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Screen size Much larger screen
Dynamic range Less dynamic range

discussion

Nikon D90
D90
Nikon

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Nikon D5000
D5000
Nikon

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Showing 5 comments

LeicaX (1:05 PM, May 29, 2014)
I own both cameras and they are two different machines. One is great for outdoors landscape D5000 and the other D90 is great for everyday purposes.
 
Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (0:58 PM, August 30, 2011)
Yes, I think you're right the D5000 does use the same sensor as the D90.   We're comparing high ISO benchmarks from DxOMark, that show the D90 has a slight edge, they are very close though.

Often cameras do use the same sensor, but get slightly different results, perhaps due to software, or other components in the camera.  For example I believe the Nikon D7000, Sony A580 and Pentax K-5 all use the same sensor.
 
Photography96 (10:54 AM, August 30, 2011)
are you sure that D5000 is noisy at high  ISO than D90? I thought D5000 had the same sensor as the D90 ? 
 
Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (3:29 PM, March 12, 2011)
You're absolutely right, thanks, we've fixed that up.
 
Fuzzyhead (9:31 AM, March 12, 2011)
As both D5000 and D90 uses the same MULTICAM 1000 for autofocus, Nikon D5000 has only one cross-type focus point.