• APS-C 368.2mm2
  • 16.2 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • $449 Average Retail $900 MSRP
  • APS-C 372.9mm2
  • 12.3 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 3200
  • $954 Average Retail $1300 MSRP

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Advantages

Nikon D5100 over Nikon D90

  • Tiltable Screen
    Tiltable vs Fixed
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • More pixels
    16.2 vs 12.3 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • External Mic
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • 1080p
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    Unlimited vs 20 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (single-shot mode)
  • Bigger RAW buffer
    Unlimited vs 13 shots
    Larger buffer for RAW shots (single-shot mode)
  • Higher boost ISO
    25600 vs 6400 ISO
    Higher boost ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Nikon D90 over Nikon D5100

  • Lens zoom ratio
    5.8x vs 3.0x
    Zooming is easier than walking
  • Fast startup
    0.30 vs 0.50 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Yes vs No
    Might improve live view and video AF performance
  • Faster RAW shooting
    2.9 fps vs 1.3 fps
    Faster RAW shooting in single-shot mode
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    2.8 fps vs 1.4 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (single-shot mode)

Review Excerpt

  • Side-mounted tilt / swivel LCD screen; same sensor and processing as the Nikon D7000; good speed and battery life; in-camera HDR and filter effects; Full HD video capture with aperture control; audio levels control and external microphone jack.

  • AF-S lens mount doesn't offer autofocus with screw-drive lenses; popup flash isn't the greatest; no built-in wireless flash control; HDR function doesn't microalign source images.

The Competition

Compared to Nikon D300S

Nikon D5100
Nikon D300S
  • $449
  • APS-C
  • Tiltable Screen
  • More pixels
  • $1463
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • More cross-type AF points
Nikon D90
Nikon D300S
  • $954
  • APS-C
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • $1463
  • APS-C
  • More cross-type AF points
  • More AF points

Compared to Nikon D7000

Nikon D5100
Nikon D7000
  • $449
  • APS-C
  • Tiltable Screen
  • Bigger RAW buffer
  • $952
  • APS-C
  • Lens zoom ratio
  • More cross-type AF points
Nikon D90
Nikon D7000
  • $954
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • $952
  • APS-C
  • More cross-type AF points
  • More pixels

Compared to Canon T3i

Nikon D5100
Canon T3i
  • $449
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup
  • $582
  • APS-C
  • Lens zoom ratio
  • Faster RAW shooting
Nikon D90
Canon T3i
  • $954
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup
  • $582
  • APS-C
  • Tiltable Screen
  • Lens zoom ratio

Compared to Sony A65

Nikon D5100
Sony A65
  • $449
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $598
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • More cross-type AF points
Nikon D90
Sony A65
  • $954
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Lens zoom ratio
  • $598
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Tiltable Screen

Compared to Sony A58

Nikon D5100
Sony A58
  • $449
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
  • $448
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • More cross-type AF points
Nikon D90
Sony A58
  • $954
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Lens zoom ratio
  • $448
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Tiltable Screen
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