Nikon D5000 Review

June 22, 2009 | Zoltan Arva-Toth | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Nikon D5000 is a new 12.3 megapixel DSLR camera that can record HD movies at 1280x720 pixels / 30fps with sound. A 2.7 inch vari-angle LCD monitor makes it easier to compose your shots from difficult angles, while the extensive ISO range of 100-6400 should cope with most lighting conditions. A 4fps burst shooting mode, 11-point autofocus system with 3D Focus Tracking, 100,000-cycle shutter unit, quiet shooting mode, Active D-Lighting and 19 Scene Modes complete the Nikon D5000's headline specs. The Nikon D5000 costs £719.99 / €878.00 / $729.95 body only, or £799.99 / €972.00 / $849.95 with the 18-55mm VR kit lens.

Ease of Use

The new Nikon D5000 slots in between the existing D60 and D90 models, not only in terms of feature set and functionality, but also in terms of size and weight. It isn't as compact and lightweight as the D60 but neither is it quite as bulky and heavy as the D90. The right-hand grip bears more resemblance to that of the D60 - it's a wee bit uncomfortable for photographers with large hands and/or longish fingers, but not annoyingly so. New to the D5000 is a rubberised thumb rest on the back of the body, which is a welcome improvement over the D60.

The 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR kit lens that Nikon supplied feels fairly well-balanced - if a tad front-heavy - on the Nikon D5000 and it fits into place with a reassuring mechanical click. It also adds the very important advantage of Vibration Reduction. Nikon bodies don't offer any form of in-camera image stabilisation, unlike similar models from Sony, Pentax and Olympus, so the affordable 18-55mm VR lens is a good investment.

The shutter release action on the Nikon D5000 is surprisingly quiet, with an exemplarily dampened mirror slap that makes this DSLR actually quieter than some rangefinder cameras! Furthermore, there is a new Quiet mode, in which the mirror is raised fairly slowly to further reduce the sound it makes. This, however, introduces some shutter lag, which usually isn't worth the few decibels of difference versus what is already an impressively quiet shutter (Nikon recommends using the Quiet mode for taking pictures of sleeping babies, a situation in which a bit of shutter delay isn't a problem).

The Nikon D5000 follows conventional DSLR design in having a shooting mode dial on the top of the camera, which allows you to select either one of the advanced modes like Manual, Aperture- or Shutter-priority, or a number of scene modes. The Exposure Compensation button is thoughtfully positioned next to the shutter release. Hold down this button with your right forefinger and spin the control wheel on the top-rear of the camera with your thumb to adjust its settings - simple and intuitive. The control wheel is now slightly slanted, making it more ergonomic than on the D60.

The other button sitting next to the shutter release, which was dedicated to the Active D-lighting function on the D60, is once again labeled 'info', just like on the old D40. This button is arguably at the heart of the Nikon D5000's ease-of-use, as the camera lacks the monochromatic status LCD of the D90, so Nikon had to provide a different way to check vital shooting information without having to look into the viewfinder. Enter the info button - pressing it displays virtually all of the camera's main settings on the large rear screen, provided it is not folded inward to protect it from harm.

Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000
Front Rear

This articulated screen is one of the few true novelties the D5000 offers over previous Nikon DSLRs. It took some time for Nikon to realise that the full potential of Live View can only be exploited if it is delivered on a hinged screen, but the company has finally joined the ranks of Olympus, Panasonic and Sony in offering a model sporting this feature. In terms of flexibility, Nikon's bottom-hinged LCD is midway between Sony's simple tilting screen and the left-hinged, free-angle monitors offered by Olympus and Panasonic. In other words, the bottom placing of the hinge wasn't the most brilliant idea, as it's more limiting than the left-hinged solution, but it's still more flexible than a simple tilting screen (and much more useful than a fixed LCD).

Sadly though, the anti-glare coating leaves a lot to be desired - so much so that the screen proved almost unusable outdoors in strong daylight. Cranking up the LCD's brightness didn't help much. We are not quite sure if it the lack of proper anti-reflex coating is just an unfortunate oversight or the result of deliberate cost-cutting, but it definitely is an annoyance on a DSLR whose main selling points are Live View and video recording, among others.

Speaking of Live View, it can be accessed by way of a dedicated Lv button on the back of the camera, just as on the D90. Press it and the mirror flips up, the shutter opens and the rear screen displays the scene as seen through the lens. There is a red rectangle in the middle, which you can move practically anywhere in the frame. When in manual focus (MF) mode, you can magnify into this rectangle in a number of steps by repeatedly pressing the button marked with a loupe icon, but this magnification seems to be at least partially interpolated. This means that you cannot see detail down to the pixel level, unlike with some competing cameras.

Fortunately, MF is not the only focusing option in Live View, at least as long as you are taking stills. Contrast-detect auto-focus (CDAF) is also available and, while slow, it tends to be accurate. As with the D90, CDAF can also be used in connection with face detection. 'Face-Priority AF' had no problem finding and keeping track of human faces as long as they were facing the camera, but acquiring focus was another story - very, very slow.

Live View must also be entered to shoot movies. After pressing the Lv button and optionally presetting the aperture and focus, you can start recording video by pressing the OK button sitting in the middle of the ubiquitous four-way pad. Once recording has commenced, there is no way to change the aperture or shutter speed, and you cannot use auto-focus either. Manual focusing is of course possible, but the 2.7' size and - especially - the 230,000-dot resolution of the screen makes it difficult to judge focus (the D90's three-inch, 920,000-dot monitor is obviously better for this). In other respects, the Nikon D5000's movie parameters are identical to the D90's - the camera records 1280x720-pixel, 24-frame-per-second motion JPEGs in AVI format.

Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000


Of course the Nikon D5000 is an SLR, so Live View and video recording are add-on features, more than anything else. Its primary function is to take still photographs, and for that, you do not have to use Live View. Like all SLRs, the D5000 has a proper through-the-lens optical viewfinder too, albeit it's smaller than the D60's and much smaller than the D90's; about the same as that of the old D70. The Nikon D5000's 11 auto-focus points are permanently marked on the focusing screen, whereas the compositional grid lines can be called up via a menu option. Two warning signs - telling you that the battery is running low or you have forgotten to insert a memory card - may also appear in the form of overlaid icons when appropriate. Below the finder is a traditional monochromatic status bar showing practically all relevant shooting information (including the ISO sensitivity, if so specified in the menu).

As stated above, the Nikon D5000, like the D90 but unlike the D60, has 11 auto-focus sensors, out of which only the central one is a cross type (compared to five out of seven in the Olympus E-620, for instance). The other ten are of the line variety, consequently being only sensitive to either vertical or horizontal detail, but not both. In practice, this did not turn out to be a real problem, with the camera typically locking focus on the subject quickly and easily, no matter which AF point was selected.

In the viewfinder, the active AF point appears in brackets, which are easy to see. Selecting the active AF point is done by way of the four-way pad - except if you choose Auto Area AF -; again a simple and intuitive solution. Be aware of one thing though: after the auto meter-off delay specified in Custom Function 'c2', the camera goes into a sort of sleep mode, in which you cannot set the shutter speed, the f-number or indeed the active AF point until you half-press the shutter release button to wake the camera fully up. In low light, the AF sensors are helped by an AF assist lamp located on the front plate of the camera.

The overall control layout and 'philosophy' of the Nikon D5000 has more in common with the likes of the D40 and the D60 than the D90. It has only one control wheel, and there are no dedicated buttons for controlling ISO sensitivity, white balance, metering or AF mode. The Drive Mode / Fn button can be reprogrammed to perform ISO selection or white balance adjustment (or one of a few other functions such as file quality specification), but the others still have to be set through the main info screen, called up by pressing the 'i' button bottom-left of the rear display. With practice, performing adjustments via this screen becomes fairly quick and easy, but it's still not as efficient as the D90's dedicated controls.

At any rate, the range of functions that can be accessed via the interactive info panel is impressive. You can set the file quality and image resolution, white balance, ISO sensitivity, drive mode (including continuous shooting at 4 frames per second), AF mode, AF area mode, metering mode, Active D-lighting, bracketing, picture control and [flash] exposure compensation.

Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000
Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

The settings that can be adjusted neither via hard buttons nor the interactive info panel are accessible via the menu system. A couple of these are really interesting, and worth being mentioned. These include the so-called Exposure Delay Mode and Interval Timer Shooting. In Exposure Delay Mode, the mirror is flipped up when you tip the shutter release button, but the shutter itself only opens a second later, when the vibration caused by the mirror has more or less subsided. This is not quite the same thing as the mirror lock-up feature of the higher-specified Nikons - as you cannot set the time between raising the mirror and actually taking the shot -, but it's still quite an effective tool for maximising sharpness when shooting from a tripod. The interval timer shooting feature is even more special, since it is something that is not offered by the D90. Check out Sam Javanrouh's article on time-lapse photography in our Techniques section to get an idea of what you can use this feature for.

For the images already captured, the Nikon D5000 offers a broad range of retouching tools, including post-capture D-lighting (useful if you forgot to turn on Active D-lighting before capture), red-eye correction, trimming, monochrome conversion, different filter effects, colour adjustments, image resizing, image overlay, in-camera raw processing, quick auto retouching, straightening of crooked pictures, lens distortion correction, perspective control (reduction of keystoning) and the creation of a low-resolution stop-motion movie from still shots (particularly interesting for shots taken with the interval timer shooting feature, though limited in terms of resolution and frame rate). Many of these functions make it unnecessary to buy specialised computer programs or plug-ins and spend hours in front of a computer to achieve a desired/popular effect.

The Nikon D5000 is powered by a proprietary EN-EL9a Lithium-ion battery and records videos and image files on SD/SDHC cards. As we noted in our D90 review, we would really have liked to see Nikon add a second card slot for Compact Flash cards, so that owners of higher-specified Nikon DSLRs who buy a D90 or D5000 as a second body can use their existing memory cards, but so far Nikon has not shown any interest in providing dual card slots. As far as connectivity goes, there are USB/VideoOut and Mini HDMI ports as well as an accessory terminal for the connection of a wired remote or a GPS unit, all sheltered behind a door on the left side of the camera, when viewed from the back.

In summary, the Nikon D5000 is a fairly compact and admirably quiet DSLR that inherits the self-cleaning 12-megapixel sensor, 11-point AF module, Live View and video recording capability and extensive menu system of the bigger, heavier and more expensive D90, and the infopanel-driven operation of the smaller, lighter D60, while adding an articulated LCD to the mix. The result is a versatile and unobtrusive little DSLR that is very well suited to a broad range of photographers and photographic tasks.

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 12.3 megapixel JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 5Mb.

During the review, the Nikon D5000 captured photos of very good quality. Colours were usually spot on, and the automatic white balance system worked quite well.  Active D-lighting managed to squeeze most of the dynamic range captured by the sensor into the JPEGs the camera produced. Resolution at base ISO proved enough for some seriously big prints. Noise, while detectable if you deliberately looked for it, did not pose a real problem until you went above ISO 1600, and even then it remained low enough to to allow small to mid-sized prints to be made. Red-eye was not a common occurrence with the built-in flash, and when we did encounter it, it was very moderate and easily cured by setting the flash to red-eye reduction mode. The camera also proved very well suited to night photography, with no hot pixels appearing in night shots with long-exposure noise reduction turned on. Curiously, matrix metering proved somewhat less accurate than with the D90, prompting us to use exposure compensation much more often - despite the fact that the two cameras use essentially the same metering system.


The base sensitivity of the Nikon D5000 is ISO 200, but you can go down to ISO 100 using the expanded sensitivity setting of L1.0. At the other end of the scale, you can dial in ISO 3200, or even 6400, the latter of which also comes as an expanded setting, called H1.0. The ISO speed can be adjusted in 1/3 EV increments. The 100% crops below are from photos taken at “full” ISO speeds from ISO 100 through ISO 6400, with High ISO NR turned off.

Although in some cases, you can detect some shadow noise even in photographs taken at relatively low ISOs, it does not have much of an impact on the final output up to, and including, ISO 1600. From then on, noise starts to limit the maximum print size at which the pictures still look good, but even an ISO 6400 shot should be OK for prints of at least 13x18cm. Colour saturation is also well maintained up to ISO 3200, though it does drop noticeably beyond that.

The Nikon D5000 also has ISO Sensitivity Auto Control, activated from the shooting menu. If set to On, the camera will automatically adjust the sensitivity if proper exposure cannot be achieved at the value chosen by the photographer. The user can put a limit on the maximum sensitivity selectable by the camera.



ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)


ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)


ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)


ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)


ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)


ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)


ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

File Quality

The file quality settings available on the D5000 include Basic, Normal and Fine for JPEGs, plus you can also store your photos in Nikon's proprietary raw format (NEF).  Here are some 100% crops which show the quality of the various options, with the file size shown in brackets.

Fine (100% Crop)

Normal (100% Crop)


Basic (100% Crop)

RAW (100% Crop)


Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a soft at the default sharpening setting and benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You can also change the in-camera sharpening level to suit your tastes by changing the Picture Styles.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)



The pop-up flash on the D5000 has several settings including Auto, Fill-in flash, Red-eye Reduction, SlowSync, Red-eye Reduction with Slow Sync, Rear-curtain Sync and Off. The mode of operation can be TTL, Auto or Manual, and there is Flash Exposure Compensation (FEC) available as well. Note however that unlike the D90, the D5000 cannot control wirelessly slaved system flashes. These snaps of a white ceiling were taken at a distance of 1.5m using the kit zoom.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (27mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (27mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

Flash Off - Telephoto (82.5mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (82.5mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are a couple of portrait shots. The built-in speedlight caused only a minor red-eye effect in this test, which could be fully eliminated by setting the flash to red-eye reduction mode.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)

Red-eye Reduction

Red-eye Reduction (100% Crop)


The Nikon D5000 lets you dial in shutter speeds of up to 30 seconds and has a Bulb mode as well for exposure times of practically any length, which is very good news if you are seriously interested in night photography. There is an optional long-exposure noise reduction function that can be activated to filter out any hot pixels that may appear when extremely slow shutter speeds are used. Do note that this works by way of dark frame subtraction, which effectively doubles the exposure time. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 10 seconds, aperture of f/11 at the L1.0 (ISO 100) sensitivity setting. We've included a 100% crop for you to see what the quality is like.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Image Stabilisation

The Nikon D5000 does not offer body-integral image stabilisation, but the kit lens bundled with the camera features Vibration Reduction, Nikon's proprietary lens-based optical stabilisation system. This allows you to take sharp hand-held photos at slower shutter speeds than with lenses that lack this function. To illustrate this, I took two photos at the long end of the zoom, with VR turned on and off. At a shutter speed of 1/15 second - which is rather slow for this focal length - the photo taken with VR was still commendably sharp, but the one without VR was decidedly blurred, as the 100% crops below clearly show.

Shutter Speed / Focal Length

Image Stabilisation Off (100% Crop)

Image Stabilisation On (100% Crop)

1/15th / 82.5mm


D-lighting is Nikon's dynamic range optimisation tool that attempts to squeeze  the full dynamic range of the sensor into JPEGs. The available settings are Off, Auto, Low, Medium, High and Extra High. The following examples demonstrate the difference between the two extremes, Off and Extra High.

D-lighting Off

D-lighting Off (100% crop)


D-lighting On

D-lighting On (100% crop)

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Nikon D5000 camera, which were all taken using the 12.3 megapixel Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample RAW Images

The Nikon D5000 enables users to capture RAW and JPEG format files. We've provided some Nikon RAW (NEF) samples for you to download (thumbnail images shown below are not 100% representative).

Sample Movie & Video

The Nikon D5000 can record HD video in the Motion JPEG (AVI) format. This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 1280x720 pixels at 30 frames per second. Please note that this 19 second movie is 49.8Mb in size.

Product Images

Nikon D5000

Front of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Isometric View / Pop-up Flash

Nikon D5000

Isometric View

Nikon D5000

Isometric View

Nikon D5000

Rear of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Rear of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Rear of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Top of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Bottom of the Camera

Nikon D5000

Side of the Camera


Nikon D5000

Memory Card Slot

Nikon D5000

Battery Compartment


The Nikon D5000 is a successful crossbreed of the D90 and the D60. The new DSLR combines the imaging assembly, AF module, Live View and HD video recording capabilities of the former with the beginner-friendly infopanel-based operation of the latter, in a form factor that lies somewhere in the middle between the two.

It also adds its own to the mix, in the form of an articulated rear LCD, though this is sadly compromised by the lack of proper anti-glare coating, which causes the otherwise versatile screen to be very hard to see in strong daylight. Also specific to the Nikon D5000 is the extremely well-dampened, therefore surprisingly quiet mirror that, along with the relatively small size and unobtrusive appearance of the camera, makes it ideal for applications like candid street photography.

Those who require dual control wheels, more dedicated buttons, a large viewfinder and greater compatibility with older AF lenses will still be better served by a D90 and are therefore advised to save up for the higher specified model. For everybody else, the Nikon D5000 provides much the same functionality and image quality in a smaller, lighter and quieter edition.

Obviously, the competition hasn't stood still either since the introduction of the D90, and these days there are remarkable offerings in the market that can potentially lure you away from the Nikon D5000. The Canon EOS 500D, the Olympus E-620 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 each have their own sets of strengths and weaknesses, therefore we recommend that you check out our reviews of those cameras too, before making a purchase.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 4.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 5
Value for money 4.5

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Nikon D5000 from around the web. »

The idea of an upper-entry-level DSLR (for want of a better term), that sits below the 'enthusiast' grade D90 (with its twin control dials, big battery and pentaprism viewfinder), is hardly a radical one - the Canon EOS 500D and Olympus E-620 seem to cater to a similar market. So what does this new Nikon have to offer either the tech-savvy first-time DSLR buyer, or the owner of an older entry-level model wanting newer features but unwilling to slavishly follow the manufacturer's 'upgrade path'?
Read the full review » »

Nikon's already excellent digital SLR lineup gets a new member: the Nikon D5000. With the D90's 12.3-megapixel sensor, HD video capability, and a new 2.7-inch articulating LCD, the Nikon D5000 doesn't clearly displace any other cameras in the lineup, but fits between the D60 and D90 in both features and price.
Read the full review » »

The Nikon D5000 is the company’s latest 'upper-entry-level' DSLR aimed at beginners or those wanting a step-up from a basic budget model. Announced in April 2009, it’s the successor to the popular D60 and while externally resembling its predecessor, it inherits many key aspects of the higher-end D90 including its sensor with Live View and HD movie recording. The D5000 also becomes the first Nikon DSLR to feature an articulated screen.
Read the full review » »

As easy to use as any entry-level DSLR in auto modes, the D5000 provides greater speed, reliability and versatility plus advanced amenities. In spite of the relatively affordable price, this Nikon model employs the latest technology and its tilt/swivel LCD monitor is a definite bonus. While it may be tempting to consider a DSLR with even higher resolution, this 12.3 MP Nikon employs larger pixels for excellent dynamic range and clean images at high ISO....Overall this is a very fine camera that offers maximum value. It’s up against some still competition, but in my estimation the D5000 is the most desirable current DSLR in the sub-$700 category.
Read the full review »


  • Image Sensor Format DX
  • Image Sensor Type CMOS
  • Sensor Size 15.8 x 23.6mm
  • Total Pixels 12.9 million
  • Effective Pixels 12.3 million
  • Image Area (pixels)

    (L) 4288x2848
    (M) 3216x2136
    (S) 2144x1424
  • Top Continuous Shooting Speed at full resolution 4 frames per second
  • LCD Monitor Size 2.7 in. diagonal
  • LCD Monitor Type
    Vari-angle color LCD monitor
  • LCD Monitor Resolution 230,000 Dots
  • LCD Monitor Angle of View 170-degree wide-viewing angle
  • LCD Monitor Adjustments Brightness,7 levels
  • Shutter type Electronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane
  • Slowest Shutter Speed 30 sec. in steps of 1/3
    1 EV
  • Fastest Shutter Speed 1/4000 sec. in steps of 1/3
    1 EV
  • Bulb Shutter Setting Yes
  • Lowest Standard ISO Sensitivity 200 in steps of 1/3
    1 EV
  • Highest Standard ISO Sensitivity 3200 in steps of 1/3
    1 EV
  • Lowest Expanded ISO Sensitivity Lo-1 (ISO 100 equivalent)
  • Highest Expanded ISO Sensitvity Hi-1 (ISO 6400 equivalent)
  • Expanded ISO Sensitivity Options

    Lo-1 (ISO 100 equivalent) in steps of 1/3 EV

    Hi-1 (ISO 6400 equivalent) in steps of 1/3 EV 

  • Storage Media SD
  • Storage System JPEG: JPEG-baseline-compliant; can be selected from Size priority and Optimal Quality
    Compressed 12-bit NEF (RAW)
  • File System Compliant with DCF 2.0
    EXIF 2.21
  • Exposure Modes Programmed Auto (P) with Flexible Program
    Shutter-Priority Auto (S)
    Aperture-Priority Auto (A)
    Manual (M)
    Auto (flash off) Advanced Scene Modes
  • Advanced Scene Modes Portrait
    Night Portrait
    Night Landscape, Party/Indoor, Beach/Snow, Sunset, Dusk/Dawn, Pet Portrait, Candlelight, Blossom, Autumn Colors, Food, Silhouette, High Key, Low Key
  • Exposure Metering System 420 pixel RGB sensor 3D Color Matrix Metering II
  • Metering Range 1) 0 to 20 EV (Matrix or center-weighted metering); 2) 2 to 20 EV (Spot metering) (ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, at 20 degrees C/68 degrees F)
  • Exposure Meter Coupling CPU
  • Exposure Compensation ±5EV in increments of 1/3
  • Exposure Lock Yes
  • Exposure Bracketing Yes
    2 or 3 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV
  • Shutter Release Modes Live View [LV] mode
    Self-timer mode
    Continuous [C] mode: 4 Quiet mode
  • Movie Modes Movie with sound
    Stop motion movie
    HD 1280 x 720/24 fps VGA 640 x 424/24 fps QVGA 320 x 216/24 fps
  • White Balance Sun
    Auto (TTL white balance with 420-pixel RGB sensor) Seven manual modes with fine-tuning; Sun Shade Fluorescent Incandescent Flash Preset Fine Tune by Kelvin Color temperature setting
  • White Balance Bracketing Yes, Yes
  • D-Lighting Bracketing 2 exposures
  • Live View Shooting
  • Playback Functions Full frame
    Thumbnail (4, 9, 16 or 72 segments)
    Shooting data
    Highlight point display
    Auto image rotation
    Sound playback
    D-Movie playback
  • Interface Hi-speed USB
  • Lens Mount Nikon F bayonet mount
  • Compatible Lenses

    AF-S or AF-I: All functions supported.
    • Type G or D AF NIKKOR without built-in autofocus motor: All functions except autofocus supported. IX NIKKOR lenses not supported.
    • Other AF NIKKOR: All functions supported except autofocus and 3D color matrix metering II. Lenses for F3AF not supported.
    • Type D PC NIKKOR: All functions supported except autofocus and some shooting modes.
    • AI-P NIKKOR: All functions supported except autofocus and 3D color matrix metering II.
    • Non-CPU: Autofocus not supported. Can be used in mode M, but exposure meter does not function. Electronic rangefinder can be used if lens has a maximum aperture of f/5.6 or faster

  • Picture Angle 1.5
  • Viewfinder -2.0 to +1.0 m-1
  • Viewfinder Frame Coverage Approx. 95%
  • Viewfinder Diopter Adjustment (-2.0 to +1.0 m-1)
  • Viewfinder Eyepoint


  • Reflex Mirror Quick-return type
  • Focusing Screen
    Type B BriteView Clear Matte Mark V screen with focus frame (framing grid can be displayed)
  • Interchangeable Focusing Screens No
  • Viewfinder Magnification Approx. 0.78
  • Depth-of-field Control No
  • Autofocus System Nikon Multi-CAM 1000 autofocus module with TTL phase detection, 11 focus points (including 1 cross-type sensor) and AF-assist illuminator (range approx. 0.5-3 m/1 ft. 8 in.-9ft.10 in.)
  • Maximum Autofocus Areas/Points 11
  • Autofocus Sensitivity -1 - +19 EV (ISO 100, 20°C/68°F
  • Focus Modes Single-servo AF (S)
    Continuous-servo (C)
    Manual (M) with electronic rangefinder
    Live View autofocus; Face-priority, wide area, normal area and Subject tracking
  • Single-point AF Mode Yes
  • Dynamic AF Mode Yes
  • Auto-area AF Mode Yes
  • Focus Lock AE-L/AF-L button
    Half press of shutter-release button (single-point AF in AF-S)
  • Picture Control Standard
    Nine User-customizable settings
  • In-Camera Image Editing Trim
    Color Balance
    Image Overlay
    Filter Effects
    Distortion Control
    Stop Motion
    Color Balance
    NEF (RAW) processing
    Quick retouch
    Distortion Control
    Small picture
    Red-eye correction
    Perspective Control Color Outline
  • Built-in Flash Yes
  • External Flash Shoe Yes
  • Built-in Flash Distance 56 at ISO 200 ft.17 at ISO 200m
  • Dust-Off Reference Photo Yes
  • Save/Load Camera settings No
  • Nikon Creative Lighting System Compatibility Yes
    Built-in Commander mode not available
  • Flash Sync Speed up to 1/200
  • Flash Sync Modes Front-curtain sync (normal)
    Slow sync
    Rear-curtain sync
    Red-eye reduction
  • Flash Control 1) i-TTL: TTL flash control by 420-pixel RGB sensor, built-in flash, SB-900, SB-800, SB-600, SB-400: i-TTL balanced fill-flash and standard i-TTL flash
    2) AA (Auto Aperture-type) flash: Available with SB-900 and SB-800 used with CPU lens
    3) Non-TTL Auto: Available with Speedlights such as SB-800, 28, 27, and 22S
    4) Range-priority manual flash; available with SB-900 and SB-800
  • Flash Sync Terminal No
  • Accessory Shoe Yes
  • Self-timer 2, 5, 10, 20 seconds duration
  • World Time Setting Yes
  • Date, Time and Daylight Savings Time Settings Yes
  • Battery Type Rechargeable
  • Battery / Batteries EN-EL9 Lithium-ion Battery
    EN-EL9a Lithium-ion Battery
  • AC Adaptor EH-5a AC Adapter
  • Battery Charger MH-18a Quick Charger
  • Image Comment Yes
  • Battery Life (shots per charge) 510 shots (CIPA)
  • Tripod Socket ¼-20
  • Approx. Dimensions Width 5.0 in. (127mm)
    Height 4.1 in. (104mm)
    Depth 3.1 in. (80mm)
  • Approx. Weight 19.8 oz. (560g)
  • Supported Languages Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish
  • Supplied Software Software Suite CD-ROM
  • Other Specifications and equipment are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.
  • Supplied Accessories
    • EN-EL9a Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
    • MH-23 Quick Charger
    • DK-5 Eyepiece Cap
    • DK-24 Rubber Eyecup
    • UC-E6 USB Cable
    • EG-CP14 Audio Video Cable
    • AN-DC3 Camera Strap
    • Body Cap
    • BS-1 Accessory Shoe Cover
    • Software Suite CD-ROM
    *Supplied accessories may differ depending on country or area.

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