Updated (April, 2011): Compare the Nikon D5100 vs Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

Nikon D5000

Winner
Nikon D5000

49

vs

Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

40

Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D5000

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 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies
Sensor size
Large sensor
APS-C 23.5x15.7mm
Shutter lag
Barely any delay taking photos
198 ms shutter lag
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

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 Lower noise at high ISO 868 ISO vs 607 ISO
Help
The D5000 has a slight edge (0.5 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Dynamic range More dynamic range 12.5 EV vs 11.5 EV
Help
1 f-stop more dynamic range
Overall image quality Better image quality 72.0 vs 66.0
Help
Around 10% better image quality
Lens availability Significantly more lenses available 205 lenses vs 123 lenses
Help
Around 70% more lenses available
Sensor type Has a CMOS-family sensor CMOS vs CCD
Help
CMOS-family sensors often produce better quality images
Continuous shooting Shoots faster 4 fps vs 2.5 fps
Help
60% faster continuous shooting
Viewfinder size Larger viewfinder 0.51x vs 0.48x
Help
More than 10% larger viewfinder
Color depth Better color depth 22.7 bits vs 22.5 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.2 more bits of color
Thickness Significantly thinner 3.1" vs 3.4"
Help
Around 10% thinner
Light sensitivity (boost) Has boost ISO 6,400 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Sensor size Slightly larger sensor APS-C 23.6x15.8mm vs APS-C 23.5x15.7mm
Help
Almost the same
Focus points Slightly more focus points 11 vs 9
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Size Slightly smaller 127x104x80 mm vs 128x97x86 mm
Help
Almost the same
Nikon D5000 Learn more about
the Nikon D5000

Advantages of the Sony DSLR-A390

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Image stabilization Image stabilization Sensor shift vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Shutter lag Less shutter lag 198 ms vs 276 ms
Help
Around 30% less delay when taking photos
Storage slots Has more storage slots 2 vs 1
Help
More slots allows storing more images without switching memory cards
True resolution Higher true resolution 14 MP vs 12.2 MP
Help
Capture more than 10% more detail in your photos
Weight Lighter 549 g vs 590 g
Help
Around 10% lighter
Sony Alpha DSLR-A390 Learn more about
the Sony DSLR-A390
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000 49

vs

40 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

similarities

Compared to recent entry-level DSLRs

Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
Screen flips out Flip-out screens Help
Great for movies
Sensor size Large sensors Help
D5000:APS-C 23.6x15.8mm
DSLR-A390:APS-C 23.5x15.7mm
Movie format One shoots movies Help
D5000:720p @ 24fps
DSLR-A390:None
Fastest shutter speed Slow max shutter speed Help
1/4000 of a second
Thickness Quite thick Help
D5000:3.1"
DSLR-A390:3.4"
Light sensitivity (boost) One has boost ISO Help
D5000:6,400 ISO
DSLR-A390:None
Size Large Help
D5000:127x104x80 mm
DSLR-A390:128x97x86 mm
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
D5000:12.2 MP
DSLR-A390:14 MP
Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
230k dots
Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
1
Screen size Very small screens Help
2.7"
Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
D5000:4 fps
DSLR-A390:2.5 fps
Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
3,200 ISO
Viewfinder size Below average viewfinder size Help
D5000:0.51x
DSLR-A390:0.48x
Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
Need to shelter it from weather
Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
You could stitch photos in post
Focus points Few focus points Help
D5000:11
DSLR-A390:9
Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
D5000:868 ISO
DSLR-A390:607 ISO

dxomark

DXOMark

competitors

Shared Competitors

Advantages

Disadvantages

Nikon D3100

Nikon D3100

Entry-level DSLR

$277 body only

Movie format Records higher quality movies
Screen size Has a significantly larger screen
Sensor size Has a marginally smaller sensor
Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
Nikon D3200

Nikon D3200

Entry-level DSLR

$319 body only

$389 - $477 with 18-55mm lens

Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
Sensor size Has a marginally smaller sensor
Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
Nikon D5300

Nikon D5300

Entry-level DSLR

$747 body only

$659 - $847 with 18-55mm lens

Low light performance Is significantly less noisy at high ISO
Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
Canon Rebel T3i

Canon Rebel T3i

Entry-level DSLR

$499 body only

$549 - $579 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Records higher quality movies
Screen size Has a significantly larger screen
Sensor size Has a much smaller sensor
Shutter lag Has significantly more shutter lag
Canon Rebel T3

Canon Rebel T3

Entry-level DSLR

$419 body only

$580 with 18-55mm lens

Battery life Has a slightly longer battery life
Weight Is slightly lighter
Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
Sensor size Has a much smaller sensor
Nikon D3000

Nikon D3000

Entry-level DSLR

$550 with 18-55mm, 55-200mm lenses

Screen size Has a significantly larger screen
Size Is much smaller
Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
Screen flips out Doesn't have a screen which flips out
Canon EOS Digital Rebel XSi

Canon EOS Digital Rebel XSi

Entry-level DSLR

$695 with 18-55mm lens

Screen size Has a significantly larger screen
Shutter lag Has slightly less shutter lag
Sensor size Has a much smaller sensor
Screen flips out Doesn't have a screen which flips out

Nikon D5000 Competitors

Advantages

Disadvantages

Nikon D5100

Nikon D5100

Entry-level DSLR

$378 body only

$556 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Low light performance Significantly lower noise at high ISO
Sensor size Smaller sensor
Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
Nikon D90

Nikon D90

Entry-level DSLR

$850 with 18-105mm lens

Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
Screen size Significantly larger screen
Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
Weight Heavier
Nikon D5200

Nikon D5200

Entry-level DSLR

$547 body only

$549 - $647 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Higher resolution movies
Low light performance Significantly lower noise at high ISO
Sensor size Smaller sensor
Shutter lag More shutter lag

Sony Alpha DSLR-A390 Competitors

Advantages

Disadvantages

Sony Alpha DSLR-A350

Sony Alpha DSLR-A350

Entry-level DSLR

Battery life Longer battery life
Size Smaller
Autofocus Slower autofocus
Storage slots Has fewer storage slots
Sony SLT A58

Sony SLT A58

Entry-level DSLR

$448 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Shoots movies
Autofocus Video autofocus
Viewfinder Has a digital viewfinder
Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
Sony SLT-A37

Sony SLT-A37

Entry-level DSLR

$430 with 18-55mm lens

Movie format Shoots movies
Viewfinder size Much larger viewfinder
Viewfinder Has a digital viewfinder
Screen size Smaller screen

appearance

Nikon D5000 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390
Nikon D5000 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390
Nikon D5000 Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

discussion

Nikon D5000
D5000
Nikon

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Sony Alpha DSLR-A390
Alpha DSLR-A390
Sony

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