• APS-C 372.9mm2
  • 10.2 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 1600
  • 35mm 861.6mm2
  • 36.3 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 6400

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Differences

Nikon D3000 advantages over Nikon D800

  • Less expensive
    $600 vs $3000 (MSRP)
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 6.10 vs 4.88 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)

Nikon D800 advantages over Nikon D3000

  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Fast startup
    ~0.30 vs 0.7 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Better color depth
    25.3 vs 22.3 bits
    Capture richer, more accurate colors
  • Higher effective ISO
    2,853 vs 563 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • More dynamic range
    14.4 vs 11.1 evs
    Retain detail in highlight and shadows
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 900 vs 550 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • External Mic Jack
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • More cross-type AF points
    15 vs 1
    Cross-type AF points improve autofocus performance
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
    Pentaprism vs Pentamirror
    Much better viewfinder picture fidelity
  • HDMI out
    HDMI out vs None
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video
  • Shoots 24p video
    Yes vs No
    Gives your movies a big-screen feel
  • More dots on screen
    922k vs 230k dots
    Can mean greater resolution or a brighter screen
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.70x vs 0.53x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • More pixels
    36.3 vs 10.2 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Shoots 60p video
    Yes vs No
    A faster framerate can give you more editing options
  • Dual card slots
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • More AF points
    51 vs 11
    More AF points improve autofocus
  • Headphone jack
    Yes vs No
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    4.0 fps vs 3.0 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    54 vs 16 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster RAW shooting
    4.0 fps vs 3.1 fps
    Faster RAW shooting in burst mode
  • Bigger RAW buffer
    18 vs 6 shots
    Larger buffer for RAW shots (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light
  • Higher extended ISO
    25600 vs 3200 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Neither provide
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

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Review Excerpt

  • Rugged build; Excellent controls; Extremely high resolution; Dual cards; Surprising high ISO performance.

  • Very large files; Slower frame rate; Custom white balance gives a greenish tint; Battery life lower than D700.

The Competition

Compared to Canon XS

Nikon D3000
Canon XS
  • $450
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Larger sensor
  • $440
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Less shutter lag
Nikon D800
Canon XS
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $440
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony DSLR-A230

Nikon D3000
Sony DSLR-A230
  • $450
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Faster JPEG shooting
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • HDMI out
Nikon D800
Sony DSLR-A230
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization

Compared to Sony DSLR-A330

Nikon D3000
Sony DSLR-A330
  • $450
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • More viewfinder magnification
  • $530
  • APS-C
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Tiltable Screen
Nikon D800
Sony DSLR-A330
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor
  • $530
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization

Compared to Nikon D800E

Nikon D3000
Nikon D800E
  • $450
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger pixels
  • $2212
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup
Nikon D800
Nikon D800E
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
  • $2212
  • 35mm
  • Lacks anti-aliasing filter

Compared to Nikon D810

Nikon D3000
Nikon D810
  • $450
  • APS-C
  • Bigger pixels
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
  • $2797
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Fast startup
Nikon D800
Nikon D810
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Fast startup
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
  • $2797
  • 35mm
  • Longer stills battery life
  • Newer
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