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.D5200 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.D5200 test data on DxO Mark D3100 test data on DxO Mark
Captures sharp, detailed photos with its new 24.1-megapixel CMOS sensor, even at higher ISOs; Features a familiar (D5100) but refined body design; Records Full HD video with full-time autofocus tracking; Packs a ton of advanced features into a consumer-friendly body at a great price.
Autofocuses a little slowly for its class and struggles at times in low light; Changing some basic settings takes more time and effort than it should; Mediocre kit lens.