Whether you want a new digital SLR camera or want to buy another camera for your collection, it is always a difficult choice to make. As an old patron of Nikon cameras and also a fan of good quality pictures, I too find this a difficult choice to make. If you too are confused, read this article where the Nikon D3100 and D5100 cameras are compared. Issues like the prices and modern features of both the cameras have been addressed. So take a look at both these wonderful devices and see what they have on offer.
Digital SLR cameras are sorted as entry level, amateur and professional by their features. As the levels increase, they become more complex and simultaneously more expensive too. Another thing to remember here is that as the levels go up, the auto-focus and metering system features get better too. As the devices improve, the improved shooting speeds are also noticed. Also, the settings can be customized more conveniently to suit the preferences of the user. They also take photos in high resolution.
Nikon D5100 camera is fitted with a Nikon D5100 battery grip.
Qualities of the image and the sensor are very vital aspects. The Nikon D5100 provides a 16.2 mega pixel sensor. This is identical to the Nikon D7000, a high end and great DSLR. On the other hand, the D3100 comes with a 14.2-megapixel 23.1 x 15.4 mm sensor. This enhances the resolution and picture quality and is also useful while editing the pictures using Photoshop or any other photo editing software. The photos can further be cropped and the resolution increased to improved display or printing. The sensors in the D5100 are superior and therefore work better with high ISO when the lighting is not of good quality. The noises of the camera are minimized, the dynamics bettered and the tonal range and color sensitivity are improved. With the higher resolution and increased mega pixels, it is safe to say that the D5100 from Nikon is worth its price.
The next points of contention are the speed and auto-focus features. While the Nikon D3100 is capable of shooting three frames in one second in continuous mode, the Nikon D5100 is capable of shooting four frames in a second. The more the frames, the better the quality of pictures of moving objects. This comes in handy while shooting sporting events or wildlife shots. The Nikon D3100 and the Nikon D5100 are fitted with eleven auto-focus points, which is sufficient for the regular photographer. However, a professional photographer may need a more specialized camera with better auto-focus and more customizable options. Also remember that neither of lenses of these devices have inbuilt auto-focus motors. However, if you have new lenses, this problem can be solved.
There are some additional features in the Nikon D5100, which are not there in the Nikon D3100. The LCD screen with vari-angle is one such feature. It helps in taking tricky shots. It also had a high dynamic range (HDR) which provides for excellent highlights and shadows in the pictures. The Nikon D5100 also has many different modes of shooting and you can incorporate several effects using the camera. The camera also has a mode of HD video, which provides for high quality videos as well.
The final thing to note here is that the Nikon D5100 is bigger and heavier than the Nikon D3100. While traveling, the bulkier size of the camera may be a problem. But if you take into consideration the amount of features it packs in, this should hardly be seen as a problem!