- Editor's Rating
- Good still and video image quality
- Light and compact
- Competitive high ISO performance
- 5 fps continuous shooting speed
- Capable autofocus system
- Minimal external controls for adjusting camera settings
- Lacks weather sealing of some direct competitors
- 95% coverage of viewfinder makes accurate framing a bit problematic
Quick TakeAfter spending a few weeks with the Nikon D5200, we decided it is a pretty great entry-level DSLR camera with some impressive specs.
Introduced here in the United States at the annual Consumer Electronics Show this past January in Las Vegas, the D5200 is, logically, the follow on camera to Nikon\’s D5100. Combined with the introduction of the D3200, and more recently the D7100, this completes Nikon\’s latest modernization of their entry-level and mid-range APS-C sensor DSLR fleet. All that remains is to roll out a pro-body successor to the D300s (D400?). If there is a D400 in the works Nikon has kept it a closely guarded secret, but the D5200 is here now and offers some incremental changes over the D5100, slotting into the current Nikon DX lineup between the aforementioned entry-level D3200 and prosumer D7100.
Resolution jumps to 24.1 megapixels from 16.2 megapixels in the earlier camera; those of you tempted to think that Nikon has simply crammed more pixels onto the same sensor might want to consider this — the horizontal measurement of the D5200 sensor is listed as 23.5 mm while the D5100 sensor comes in at 23.6 mm. The size differential, however slight, could be an indication that the D5200 is carrying a different sensor than its predecessor. The processor is the latest generation EXPEED 3 versus EXPEED 2 in the D5100. ISO sensitivity ranges are the same for each camera, with a native sensitivity range of 100 to 6400, expandable to 25600. The D5200\’s 5 fps continuous shooting speed trumps the D5100\’s 4 fps and its full HD video capability adds a 60i capture rate along with a built-in stereo microphone not found in the earlier camera.
Like most entry and mid-level Nikon DSLRs, the D5200 body does not contain a focus motor so autofocus capability is limited to AF-S or AF-I CPU lenses (the \”S\” indicates a lens with the Silent Wave focus motor; the \”I\” an older lens with an internal focus motor and CPU refers to contact points on the lens base). The current Nikon lens lineup includes about 45 AF-S models, but Nikon has used the same basic \”F\” lens mount on its 35mm film and DSLR bodies since 1960 and most older legacy glass will mount on the camera and can be used for manual focus and exposure captures.
The D5200 body is marginally larger than the D5100, but nearly 2 ounces lighter. It also contains the 39 point Multi-CAM 4800 autofocus system that first appeared in the D7000; the D5100 makes do with the Multi-CAM 1000 system that debuted in the D80. A NEF/JPEG (NEF is Nikonese for \”RAW\”) shooting option not found in the D5100 is also available. The camera accepts SD/SDHC/SDXC memory media; Nikon has approved cards from Lexar, Panasonic and SanDisk for use in the D5200. The camera is available as a body-only or in-kit form matched with 18-55 or 18-105mm lenses. Nikon includes a rechargeable Li-ion battery and charger, rubber eyecup, USB and A/V cables, camera strap, eyepiece and body caps, an accessory shoe cover, CD-ROM software and printed user\’s manual with each camera. The 18-55mm kit is available with black, red or bronze bodies. Currently the Nikon D5200 kit with the 18-55mm lens sells for about $800.