Nikon D5200: Advanced entry-level DSLR boasts upgraded resolution, autofocus


posted Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 1:01 AM EDT


Nikon has launched yet another DSLR this year, this time the advanced entry-level D5200, a 24.1-megapixel successor to the Nikon D5100. It's a tweener model that blends features of the much-beloved enthusiast Nikon D7000 and the consumer-oriented D3200, and it comes with a complex pedigree.

In early 2009, Nikon launched the Nikon D5000, a camera that placed the image quality of the D90 enthusiast DSLR in a consumer-friendly body more like that of the D60. It was also the company's first SLR model to feature an articulated LCD monitor, making it better-suited to shooting from unusual angles. Two years later, Nikon followed up with the D5100, switching to a side-swiveling Vari-angle display. Again, trickle-down was at work, with the imaging pipeline of the D7000 enthusiast SLR making its way into a more affordable body.

Fast forward to today, and the SLR market is even more competitive than ever, leading Nikon Europe to unveil a follow-up more quickly this time around: the Nikon D5200 arrives just 19 months behind the D5100.

(Note that Nikon USA has not made any announcement of the D5200, suggesting that for the time being at least, this model will not be available in the U.S. market. For that matter, Nikon Europe has not announced a shipping date or pricing information either.)

With the Nikon D5200 comes a slightly different approach. For the imaging pipeline, it's a case of trickle-up, if you will. The D5200 inherits its EXPEED 3 image processor from the D3200, a slightly more affordable model that debuted in April 2012. Nikon says it has newly-developed the 24.1-megapixel CMOS image sensor in the Nikon D5200, and indeed, resolution does differ slightly from that in the D3200.  Trickle-down from a more expensive camera is still present, but this time it's the 2,016 pixel metering and 39-point autofocus systems of the venerable D7000 that make their way into the new mid-range SLR.

Read more about the new camera in our Nikon D5200 preview.