Nikon D3100 Review

Nikon D3100 Review by Andrew Rebegea

Video Quality
Value For Money
Photo Quality
My Overall Rating

Available on Amazon for $579 here.

Nikon is trying to be the best entry-level DSLR seller and he is succeeding. The new Nikon D3100 replaces the not so old D3000. D3100 has almost 14.2 megapixel CMOS sensor, Live View and also Full HD 1080p video capture. These is the first Nikon digital slr camera that can capture 1920 x 10

80 movies. Because is a digital camera, not a video one, the maximum length of the clips is limited to 10 minutes and you don’t have zoom button, if you want to zoom in and out when filming you will have to use the lens. If you scroll down at the bottom of this page you will find a video review made by DigitalRev witch will make understand better what this camera can do.

The camera body is now more functional. Now you have a button that helps you switch between single shot, multishot, timer shoot and quiet shutter. On other cameras if you wanted to change between these option you needed to go threw menu and change that. Whit this is much easier.

Let’s see this camera key features:

  • 14.2 megapixel DX-format CMOS sensor
  • 3.0″ LCD monitor (230,000 dots)
  • Image sensor cleaning (sensor shake)
  • 11 AF points (with 3D tracking)
  • IS0 100-3200 range (12,800 expanded)
  • HD movies (1080, 720p or WVGA)
  • Drive mode switch (single, continuous, timer and quiet mode)
  • Full time AF (AF-F)
  • Weight only 505g (1.1lb), including battery

If you really want to have a great camera for traveling or you are just found out you like photography this camera has the best report.

What others are saying about this camera:

Dan Aurel Cristescu:

For people looking for new DSLR camera, stop, this is it. It has none of the D3000 drawbacks: Fast buffer, never overloaded. When intentionally overloaded by myself on continuous shots, it will clear the buffer very fast(ADL on if you’re wondering). Image sensitivity at high ISO is great according to random reviews, but I’m still waiting a prof test. But think about it, on Auto ISO the range goes to 3200 – WOW, and I can’t see any noise. You can shoot everything with it, but you need a flash – SB 400 will do.

Cool stuff:

You can take photos from the live-view LCD screen. I shot a few movies and seem great, in focus most of the time. I don’t care much about video, I have a video camera HD.

You can still set AUTO ISO from the menu and set minimum shutter speed. Downside is you cannot override the AUTO ISO in any mode including Manual. You have to change it back to off from menu and than loose time figuring out which is the best ISO/aperture/shutter speed.

Review paraphrased for size. If you wanna read the full review click HERE.

Now let’s analyze Nikon D3100:

The Pros:

  • Full HD movies
  • Full time auto-focus
  • Drive mode switch
  • Image sensor cleaning
  • Easy to use guide mode
  • Size/Weight
  • Price ( Nikon D3100 is just $579 on Amazon)

The cons:

  • No flipping monitor
  • Active D-Lighting has only On/Off option

Video Review made by DigitalRev Camera Magazine

Click here To Get your Nikon D3100 from Amazon and save $120 (18%)

Disclaimer: Ordering anything through the below links will help pay for the countless hours spent writing and promoting this website. Thank you for your support! I don’t guarantee these price will stay like this forever so go out and buy now! If you liked this leave a comment bellow!

How you can edit your photos with Nikon D3100

The new Nikon D3100 has a variety of editing options. You can do various stuff from trimming a photo to adding special effects. Also you can edit your videos too.

You will be able to:

  • Remove red eyes very quick and easy,
  • Quick retouch your photos
  • Use some filter effects
  • Apply special effects
  • Apply monochrome effects
  • Play with color balance
  • Make your photos look unique (Fisheye effect, Color outline, miniature effect or distortion control)

The miniature effect will picture look like they are photos made in a miniatures models factory. This option is very effective if you want to shoot landscapes from above.

The color outline will remove all the colors from your picture. This way you can convert your photos into outline imagines. Print this images and your kid will be very glad when he will color up them.

The perspective control will help you make buildings look more natural. Everyone have a part of year when he travel and visits beautiful cities. With this option you can correct the perspective of the architectural sights you are visiting.

If you ever wondered how come photographers can make really great monochrome photos now you have the answer. With the color balance you can make very quick and easy black and white or sepia images from a normal one.

This is where the fun begins. With the other cameras you need to buy special lenses to make fun Fisheye effect photos. With Nikon D3100 you can do that with your camera without anything else.

If you want to make your kid shiny you can add stardust in his photo with filter effects.

Click here to read the entire review page!

Is Nikon D3100 a good video camera?

Even if Nikon D3100 is professional digital SLR camera you can also make good quality movies with it. With the new D-Movie option you will discover how easy is to make video with nice defocused backgrounds at a very good imagine quality. Your subject will be focused all the time thanks to the new Subject-Tracking AF.

After you made your video you can preview it on the large 3″ LCD monitor (7,5 cm). Editing is a new feature. Now you can extract imagines from your videos or even trim them. You can connect you this camera to your TV threw HDMI or HDTV. The only thing that is not quite so good is that the maximum recording time is just 10 minutes, but you can edit the videos back home and make a larger one. The D3100 can shoot videos at a resolution 1980 x 1080 Full HD.

When you make videos you will have AF continuous. This will help you make better videos even if you subject is moving very fast. You can choose between four modes in witch you desire to capture the subject:

  • Normal-area AF : You will chose this when your subject is very small. If you want to make it look great you should use a tripod.
  • Wide-area AF : If you want to make a video of your pet or your child this is what you need. This setting is designed to help you make great videos without a tripod (hand held shooting).
  • Face-priority AF : If you ever made a group photo then you know that old cameras didn’t knew how to focus everyone’s face. Nikon D3100 can recognize up to 35 faces at a time.
  • Subject-tracking AF : D3100 will memorize your subject and then track everything he does automatically. If your subject leaves the frame and then comes back the camera will start tracking him again, helping you make a great video

Now you can visit the Review page for more information!

Nikon D3100 VS Nikon D90

VS     

You will probably say that Nikon D3100 is replacing D3000, but I tried to find out what are the differences between D3100 and D90 because now you this two cameras have similar prices.

So let’s start comparing. The new Nikon D3100 has a bigger sensor (with 2.1 megapixel more). This will maximize your photo resolution to 4608 x 3072, only 4288 x 2848 on D90.

The ISO performance of the Nikon D3100 is higher then D90, 12800 on the first one and just 6400 on the last. This is great, and it comes 200$ cheaper then the old model.

When Nikon built the D3100 they made it to be compatible only with the new technology lens then we must say that is you want to have more lens D90 will be compatible with all the Nikon lens, including the old ones. Nikon D3100 is working only with the G lens models that have built in auto-focus motor. D90 will auto-focus with any other old Nikkor lens. This can be a big problem for some and not a problem at all for others, you decide…

The monitor is different too. Beside the fact that both cameras have the same 3″ monitor, D90 has a bigger resolution. I don’t believe that is gonna be a problem.

Let’s talk about the movies. Nikon D3100 is the first Nikon camera that can shoot full HD 1080p videos. D90 only has 720p capability so D3100 wins this round.

The biggest difference between D3100 and any other camera is the fact that has full-time auto-focus. This is the first Nikon digital SLR camera that has this option. This is really a GameChanger. With this and 1080p full HD video you can make really great movies.

I never had any low-end Nikon DSLR camera before. Once I had a Nikon D5000 and than I change it for D90. Nikon D3100 has so much to offer than I really think I will sell my D90 and get one.

Nikon D3100 vs Nikon D90 Spec Comparison:

  • Sensor – D3100 14.2 megapixel vs D90 12.3 megapixel
  • HD Movie Mode – D3100 1080p with full-time auto-focus vs D90 720p (no full-time auto-focus)
  • Auto Focus – 11 point AF system on both D3100 and D90
  • Compatible Lenses – D3100 only AF with G with AF motor vs D90 AF with all Nikkor AF lenses
  • Metering – 3D Color Matrix Metering II on both D3100 and D90
  • ISO – D3100 ISO 100 – 12,800 at 1 EV steps vs D90 ISO 100 to 6,400 at 1/3, 1/2, or 1 EV steps
  • Active D Lighting on both D3100 and D90
  • Built-in HDMI port on both D3100 and D90
  • Monitor – D3100 3″ 230,000 dots vs D90 3″ 921,000 dots
  • Battery – D3100 EN-EL14 Li-ion Rechargeable Battery vs D90 EN-EL3e Li-ion Rechargeable Battery
  • Dimensions – D3100 4.9″wx3.8″hx2.9″d vs D90 5.2″wx4.1″hx3.0″d
  • Click here to visit the review page
  • Weight – D3100 16oz (455g) vs D90 22oz (620g)
  • Price – D3100 is $699 and D90 is on sale on Amazon 5% off

Nikkor Lenses For Nikon D3100

Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED IF AF-S VR Zoom Nikkor Lens

This lens is great for telephoto shooting. It has most of the advanced lens options like ED (Extra Low Dispersion) glass, SWP (Silent Wave Motor) technology and VR II (vibration reduction). This lens is great for travel, portraits or sport photography. If you decide to use it with a Nikon DX SLR digital camera you will obtain almost the same results as if you were using a 105-450mm lens.

The Enhanced VR II Vibration Reduction will help you make sharpen hand-help pictures using a slower shutter speed. This helps you a lot because you will be able to shoot more precise in challenging conditions. With this setting you can make photos at a shutter speed four time slower then you could do with a lens that has no VR. These setting will help you even shoot great pictures even from a car that is running on the highway.

The ED option will provide higher resolution and higher contrast images with a very small chromatic aberration or other forms of distortion.

The SWD combines quiet operations with fast and good auto focusing. The Internal Focusing (IR) will focus your photos without changing the external size.

Technical details:
* 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens with f/4.5-5.6 maximum aperture for Nikon digital SLR cameras
* Vibration Reduction (VRII) minimizes effects of camera shake to produce sharper images
* 2 Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass elements delivers super contrast and resolution performance
* Internal Focus (IF) system provides fast and quiet auto-focusing; 4.9-feet close focus range
* Measures 3.1 inches in diameter and 5.6 inches long; weighs 26.3 ounces; 5-year warranty

Nikon 70-300mm is now on SALE on Amazon! Order threw this link and save 24%

Nikon 55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR [Vibration Reduction] Zoom Nikkor Lens

This compact zoom lens will bring the action in front your camera. Doesn’t matter if you shoot family, nature, portraits or even wildlife you will make great photos.

This has also all the great Nikon lenses option: ED, VR, SWM. The 7 blade rounded diaphragm will make you picture more clear and precise when you are looking at out-of-focus highloghts.

The image quality is absolute impressive. For this price you can’t find any other lens that offers the same results.

Technical Details
* 55-200mm zoom Nikkor lens with f/4-5.6 maximum aperture for Nikon digital SLR cameras
* 2 extra-low-dispersion (ED) glass elements for minimized chromatic aberration and superior optics
* Super-integrated coating minimizes ghosting and flare for more vivid images in dim lighting
* Silent Wave Motor produces quick and quiet high-speed auto-focusing; weighs 9 ounces
* Measures 2.7 inches in diameter and 3.1 inches long; 5-year warranty

Nikon 55-200 Lens are now on SALE on Amazon! Click to order threw this link and save 14%

Nikon 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR AF-S DX NIKKOR Lens for Nikon Digital SLR

This lens is great if you wanna shoot distant subjects on a sport event, a great sunset on the beach or just some traveling sights.

Having all the characteristics of a Nikon lens, VR II, TDM (tripod detection mode), HRI Lens Element (high refractive index), ED, SWM and SIC (super integrated coating), this lens is great for those who want to take photography to the next level.

Technical Details
* 5.5x Telephoto Zoom lens
* Nikon VR II Image Stabilization; Tripod Detection Mode
* HRI (High Refractive Index) Lens Element
* 2 Extra-low Dispersion (ED) Elements
* Exclusive Nikon Silent Wave Motor (SWM)

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Nikon 55-300 is now on SALE on Amazon. Click HERE to get 6% off the original price!

All these lenses that are now one sale will be more expensive after this stock will be finished. I don’t guarantee these offer will be available forever so, if you already have a Nikon digital SLR go and buy one now!

All these lenses are great if you use them with the new Nikon D3100. Click here to visit the review page!

Nikon D3100 vs Nikon D3000

Nikon D3000 was a bestseller and is consider to be one of the best entry-level camera ever built.

Nikon now decided it’s time to make something better. They released the new Nikon D3100, a camera that will be more competitive in it’s sector.

What is different on D3100?

The sensor has now more mega-pixels (14,2MP vs 10MP), the new D3100 has the ability to make very good JPEG photos and also shoot RAW imagine files.

Nikon D3100 has a socket now that can connect with a Nokia GP1 GPS and an optional wired remote via GPS socket.
On D3100 you couldn’t see the photos until you made them, but that is not a problem anymore because now you have Live View integrated.

Digital cameras don’t usual make good quality videos but with this on you can make Full HD 1080p witch is a great setting for a digital camera. Click here to visit the Nikon D3100 Review page.

With the HDMI output you can see your work on a TV, DVD-player or even a Blue-RAY player. You can share your work with your family this way very easy.

ISO on D3000 was quite small up to 3200. With ISO increased up to 12800 with D3100 you can make very good quality photos at a party or if you want to shoot a sporting events you will have no problem because you will be able to do almost 3 photos per second.

With full time auto-focus available in live view and in videos too Nikon D3100 can be very good even for those who want to make short videos.

Click HERE to see the cheapest price for Nikon D3100 on Amazon!

It’s easy to make photos with Nikon D3100

What is the guide mode?

The Nikon D3100 guide mode will help you obtain more good quality picture, and if don’t know anything about the professional photography, after some hour you will be an expert knowing how chose the shutter speed, how light influence your photos, the deep of the field you are about to shoot, how wide is your iris and many more settings.

With this mode you will be able to make a beautiful portrait with a softly defocused background very easy. All you have to do is easy with the guide mode. These mode will show you guidance and step by step very good explanations so you can understand how the camera works and become a master in digital photography. Selecting guide mode will allow you to see sample photos of your subject, teaching you how to chose the right settings. Read more by visiting our Nikon D3100 review page!

How to use the guide mode?

You have to set the mode dial on the top of the camera to guide. Then you will have to chose between shoot, view/delete and set up. We want to start shooting so we will chose the first category. Then if you just want to make a quick photo you will chose “easy operation”, but if you have time and want to learn and have fun with the camera you will chose “advanced operation”. This will open up the following menu: “soften backgrounds”, “bring more into focus”, “freeze motion (people or vehicles)” and “show water flowing”. After you chose one you will see in the left of your display the photo and you will start adjusting the settings. When you are done just select “start Shooting” and how do you wanna see the photos, true your viewfinder or live view on the LCD.

All pictures are taken from the official Nikon Imaging Site.

Shooting options for Nikon D3100

The new Nikon D3100 will allow you to use one of the one of 18 shooting options that includes the most commonly shooting situations:

  • Easy Operation:
    • Auto
    • Close-ups
    • Landscapes
    • No flash
    • Sleeping faces
    • Moving subjects
    • Night portrait
    • Portraits
  • Advanced operation:
    • Soften backgrounds
    • Freeze motion – people
    • Freeze motion – vehicles
    • Show water flowing
    • Bring more into focus
  • Use a timer/quiet shutter:
    • 10-second self-timer
    • Single frame
    • Quiet shutter release
    • Continuous

Scene Modes – The fastest way to awesome results

After you decided to shoot a subject, you just have to chose one of these six scene modes in order to make beautiful photos. The scenes are:

  • Portrait
  • Landscape
  • Child
  • Sports
  • Close up
  • Night portrait

If don’t know where your subjects fits in, you can always let the camera to decide what scene is the best for your subject. With this scene auto selector the camera will automatically activate one of the scene and then in the top-left of your screen it will appear a small icon so you know what scene did the camera selected.

Click Here to see an interview with Jamie Oliver, the Nikon D3100 imagine!

Nikon D3100 vs Nikon D5000

Info PR: n/a I: 34 L: 0 LD: 328 I: 28 Rank: 1273586 Density

Witch is the best? We took both cameras and compared their performances. Here are the key differences:

  • D3100 has a better chip – Expeed 2, 14.2mpx, D5000 only 12.3
  • Both cameras shoot HD movies but D3100 has better quality, 1080p, D5000 only 720p.
  • Both cameras have Active D-lighting, but D5000 has more options.
  • The D3100 model has a larger display, 3″, the D5000 has 2,7″.

Also a very good key on Nikon D5000 is the flipping LCD that let’s you make photos easier when you have to make them above your head of very close to the ground with the macro lens. After talking to many other guys I decided that D3100 is the best camera if you are a starter and you plan to make some short full HD movies. On the other hand if you just want to change your old DSRL than you should go for D5000.

The price is similar: Nikon D3100 cost only $699 and the  old D5000 is $687.

Personally I would go for D3100 because it has continuous auto-focusing when shooting a video in 11 points, a bigger display and a new processor, EXPEED 2… I look forward to see what is your opinion. Write a comment bellow and tell me what you think!

Find out more about Nikon D3100 from our review!

Jamie Oliver is the new brand imagine for Nikon D3100

In the interview posted bellow Jamie Oliver said why does he loves this camera. See it for yourself!

Nikon D3100 is on sales now on Amazon! Order it threw this link!

Nikon 18-55 Zoom Lens

In the Nikon D3100 package you will find a 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DX Nikkor Zoom Lens. These is designed for the Nikon DX-format cameras. If you chose to use the 35mm format, you will be able to obtain an angle performance of a 27-82.5mm lens witch will improve your versatility in some shooting situations.
These lens has a Silent Wave Motor (SWM) witch will provide a very quiet auto-focusing, an ED element that will improve your chromatic aberration, delivering high resolution and contrast. If you want to know more about this camera visit our Nikon D3100 review page! Click here!

So let’s look at some of these lenses characteristics:

  • Focal length: 18-55mm
  • Maximum aperture: f/3.5-5.6
  • Minimum aperture: f/22-38
  • Lens construction: 7 elements in 5 groups, with one ED glass element
  • Picture angle: 76 to 28 degrees (at 50 feet)
  • Minimum focus: 0.9 feet throughout entire zoom range
  • Filter attachment size: 52mm
  • Included accessories: LC-52 snap-on front and rear lens cap
  • Dimensions: 2.7 inches in diameter and 2.9 inches long
  • Weight: 7.2 ounces

All Nikon lenses will have a 5 year warranty.

You can buy Nikon 18-55 Lens cheapest on Amazon through this link here!