Maximum effective ISO is an estimate of the highest sensitivity at which a camera can capture excellent quality photos.
Cameras with higher effective ISO will be better choices for indoor photography, night shooting, and indoor sports photography, especially if you intend to make large prints.
You can learn more at our glossary entry.
Maximum effective ISO test data courtesy of DxO Mark.D3200 test data on DxO Mark D3100 test data on DxO Mark
Cameras with more dynamic range allow you to take photos with dramatic differences in highlight and shadow areas while retaining detail in both.
Think of a brilliant sunset on a rocky beach: Bright sunset in the background, with dark rocks in the foreground. High dynamic range means more of the extremes will be faithfully reproduced.
Dynamic range test data courtesy of DxO Mark.D3200 test data on DxO Mark D3100 test data on DxO Mark
High resolution allows cropping; Good performance in low light; Compact and comfortable, highly portable; Fast and responsive, just begs to take pictures; Quiet shutter is great for candids.
Mediocre kit lens; Might be too small for some; No bracketing; Narrow flash coverage; Matrix metering tends to overexpose.