It may be an entry-level camera, but the Nikon D3200 features a 24.2-million-pixel sensor that could provide the sort of image quality demanded by enthusiasts. Can the Nikon D3200 cater for all? The Nikon D3200 review find out.

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Nikon D3200

Metering:
Features:
AWB Colour:
LCD viewfinder:
Dynamic Range:
Build/Handling:
Autofocus:
Noise/resolution:

Product:

Nikon D3200 review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£559.99
TAGS:

Verdict

The nikon D3200 handles in a very similar way to the less expensive D3100, so the extra money is really paying for the increased pixel count. However, in the long run, such a high resolution will be as likely to frustrate the ‘family’ user as give them pleasure once all the disk space is taken up on their computer and external drives need to be purchased. That said, we cannot mark a camera down for offering more.

Most importantly, the D3200 is capable of some very impressive images, even with the 18-55mm VC kit lens, although much more so with a prime lens like a 35mm or 50mm f/1.8. Crisp and punchy images with a wide dynamic range can be produced on a large scale thanks to the high resolution. Perhaps the family photos may start making their way from the computer screen to the walls, or Nikon may just be surprised that the D3200 proves popular with ‘enthusiasts’ who opt to buy the camera as a lightweight back-up for their existing model.

Nikon D3200 – Key features

Microphone port
There is a separate port to attach an external microphone. Nikon recommends the ME-1, the small size of which complements the compact size of the camera. Offering external mic compatibility in a camera at this level is impressive.

Accessory ports
The GPS port is used to connect the external GPS unit GP-1, while the A/V out port connects the WU-1a wireless remote and the HDMI port can be used for a direct connection to a TV, enabling a live feed or image and video playback.

In-camera editing
The retouch menu offers a host of in-camera edits, including D-Lighting, trim, monochrome, filter effects, straighten, distortion control, perspective control, selective colour and image overlay.

Flash control
The power of the built-in flash can be controlled in auto TTL using exposure compensation from +1EV to -3EV, or manually from full power down to 1⁄32 power. Flash modes include redeye reduction, slow sync and rear curtain.

Guide mode
Scenarios in the guide mode’s advanced operation menu include ‘freeze motion’ and ‘soften background’. Handily, the mode is linked to the attached lens and the metered exposure of the current scene reflects in the on-screen aperture, shutter speed, white balance, exposure compensation or ISO.

Accessories
The WU-1a may well be the standout accessory given that it was launched alongside the camera, but there are many other useful compatible accessories. These include the ML-L3 infrared remote control, GPS unit GP-1, ME-1 microphone and MC-DC2 remote cord.

Drive mode
The direct control accesses single-frame shooting, as well as the 4fps high-speed burst, self-timer, delayed remote, quick-response remote and quiet shutter release.

Live view
Live view offers a good alternative to the viewfinder, providing up to 20x magnification for precise focusing and continuous contrast-detection AF in video recording.

Details

External mic:Yes
Video:1920 x 1080 pixels (at 30, 25 or 24fps), 1280 x 720 pixels (at 60 or 50fps), 640 x 424 pixels (at 30 or 25fps), MOV files with MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 compression
Built-in Flash:Yes – GN 13m @ ISO 100
Dioptre Adjustment:-1.7 to +0.5 dioptre, 18mm eye point
White Balance:Auto, 6 presets (with fine-tuning), plus custom setting
Shutter Type:Electronically controlled focal-plane shutter
Memory Card:SD and UHS-I compliant SDHC/ SDXC
Output Size:6016 x 4000 pixels
Viewfinder Type:Pentaprism
LCD:3in LCD with 921,000 dots
Field of View:Approx 95%
AF Points:Nikon Multi-CAM 1000 AF, 11 focus points (one cross-type), individually selectable AF points
Max Flash Sync:1/200sec
Sensor:24.2-million-effective-pixel CMOS sensor
White Balance Bracket:No
Focal Length Mag:1.5x
Exposure Modes:Auto, program, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual and 6 scene modes
Weight:505g approx, including battery or card/s
Power:Rechargeable Li-Ion EN-EL14 battery
File Format:Raw, JPEG, raw + JPEG simultaneously
Shutter Speeds:30-1/4000sec in 1⁄3EV steps plus bulb
Drive Mode:4fps
Colour Space:Adobe RGB, sRGB
Compression:3-stage JPEG
Exposure Comp:±5EV in 1⁄3EV steps
RRP:£559.99 (body only)
Lens Mount:Nikon F mount (with AF contacts)
ISO:ISO 100-6400 (Hi mode 12,800)
Focusing Modes:Manual, single-shot AF, automatic AF, continuous AF, predictive tracking AF
DoF Preview:Yes
Dimensions:125 x 96 x 76.5mm
Metering System:3D Color Matrix metering (evaluative), centreweighted (75% in centre of frame) and spot (2.5% on focus point)
Connectivity / Interface:USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
Tested as:Entry-level DSLR
  1. 1. Introduction
  2. 2. Features
  3. 3. Raw capture
  4. 4. Build and handling
  5. 5. White balance and colour
  6. 6. Metering
  7. 7. Noise, resolution and sensitivity
  8. 8. Autofocus
  9. 9. LCD, viewfinder and video
  10. 10. Dynamic range
  11. 11. The competition
  12. 12. Verdict
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