Expert Review of Nikon D3200 DSLR Body Black
Our reviewed device Nikon D3200 is one of the most talked about cameras in the DSLR market, as it possesses double the sensor resolution of its predecessor that is, 24 megapixels to be called a giant of a camera. And just after its launch, has become the DSLR from Nikon with the highest ever resolution. Now, for an entry-level device, this really meant a big deal for the enthusiasts and put Nikon D3200 DSLR right on top of its rivals from other entry-level brands. The nearest in competition comes from Canon EOS 1100D with a 12MP resolution. Nikon D3200 comes equipped with an Expeed 3 processor that adds up to 4fps of continuous shooting speed, in spite of the formation of some very large files.
The screen size has been kept constant at 3 inches but the pixel count has been increased from 230k to 921k dot pixels and when you talk about its video recording capabilities, Nikon D3200 has become an even more “complete” camera with the availability of 1080p Full HD video recording features at 24/25 and 30fps frame rates. Albeit, the unavailability of 50p/60p options is a little sad, but we have to remember that it is just an entry-level device. Also, we feel that the user-device interface is much better than the one on Nikon D3100 earlier. Also, there has been the reintroduction of IR remote sensors, front and back, along with the new Wu-1a optional wireless mobile adaptor through which, you can control the camera and transmit images while using an Android handset and a Mac version, on one single click.
Design and Build Quality
Now, let us talk about the design and finish provided by Nikon D3200. It measures 125mm x 96mm x 76.5mm and weighs a pretty respectable 505 grams when you fit it alongside a SD card. Now, this specification set means that our reviewed device weighs almost the same as its predecessor, though D3100 was 2mm less deep, which is hardly any difference in practical terms. There is the same old efficiently programmable function button in the camera that grants you direct access to the image quality, size, ISO sensitivity, white balance or Active D lighting settings. The flash on camera does an efficient work by working as a pop up flash that allows flash mode selection with the help of a command dial on the device.
A little disappointing however is the fact that there is absolutely no ‘Depth of View’ preview in the camera, a feature that young photography enthusiasts really crave for, although the same could be found in Canon EOS 550D. Now, on the sides of the lens mount, you will find an AF assist lamp along with a Red Eye reduction lamp and directly on the handgrip, you will find an IR receiver for operation with the use of ML-L3.
Focus and Face Detection
As mentioned time and again, Nikon is more excited about increasing the number of AF points than any other camera manufacturer in the world. So, it is hardly any surprise that Nikon D3200 has now been upgraded to a 51-point AF system, and it is the MultiCAM 3500 DX from the earlier Nikon D3100 that too sports 15 cross type sensors and works at f8, which is really handy should you make use of teleconvertors. The 2016 pixels RGB metering sensor still remains in Nikon D3200.
Lens and Image Stabilization
Nikon D3200 is shipped with an AF-S Nikkor DX 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 G VR Kit lens. Here, in this case, VR means ‘Vibration Reduction,’ which actually is the lens based IS system of Nikon. As such, Nikon does not feature any inbuilt Image stabilisation in its device, so whether you have IS in your pictures or not, totally depends on the lens mount on your camera. Now, with the help of a DX format sensor, there is this 1.5x reduction in field of view, by which the effective range become near about 27-83mm.
Screen and Menus
A major portion of the rear of Nikon D3200 is covered by the 3 inches LCD screen but as mentioned in the overview section of the camera, the pixel count has been quite dramatically escalated from 230k pixels in Nikon D3100 to 921k pixels in this device. This actually makes the screen on Canon EOS 550D comparable with this device, which in itself is the most beautiful screen we have seen in an entry level DSLR. Matching that is certainly a very big achievement. Only Canon’s screen seems to be better poised as it is 3:2 shaped as compared to the 4:3 shape of the Nikon device.
Also, the images formed in both cameras maintain a default aspect ratio of 3:2. Now that been said, Canon EOS 550D screen exploits each and every pixel on the screen whereas there is a band left below the screen of Nikon D3200 where the device displays information regarding the image rather than superimposing it with the images on the screen like in other compacts, which in a way is neater.
Nikon D3200 can work out of SD, SDHC and SDXC cards while being powered by the same battery which is also sported by its predecessor. This battery finds it location in the handgrip of the camera wherein, you can access it via a door that is made available at the bottom of the device. Nikon has promised an average of 540 shots under CIPA conditions but again, should you make use of Live View, this figure will certainly drop down drastically.
Nikon D3100 is pretty much the first entry level Nikon DSLR that offers Live View and video recording benefits. As such, Nikon D3200 inherits its predecessor’s movie making capabilities with the introduction of the latest 1080p25 and 1080p30 modes, thus adding on to the already existing line up of 1080p at 24 frames per second. Also, HD 720p recording is available in 24, 25 and 30 frames per second.
Nikon D3200 has a 24 megapixels CMOS sensor that can produce images with a maximum size of 6016 x 4000 pixels. This quite certainly, makes up for a huge upgrade with extra 10 megapixels over the precursor and as mentioned before, becomes the highest resolution DX body in Nikon’s array.
24 megapixels CMOS sensor
912k pixel LCD screen
Guide mode for novice photographers
1080p 24/25/30 video with exposure control
Manual audio level control with meters
No auto exposure bracketing or optical depth-of-field preview
Complicated menu system
Underused command dial
No built-in AF motor so can't autofocus with non AF-S lenses
No live histogram