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Nikon D5100 and D5000

It is the Nikon D5100 and D5000 are both digital single lens reflex (DSLR) cameras made by Nikon.The D5000 was introduced in the year 2009 followed by the D5100 was released in 2011. Both cameras were made to cater to intermediate and entry-level photographers looking for an inexpensive DSLR capable of delivering stunning images of high quality.

At its debut, Nikon’s D5000 DSLR was considered among its finest entry-level offerings. It features a 12.3-megapixel image sensor as well as a flip out LCD display of 2.7 inches for better imaging results, along with an 11 point autofocus system to facilitate precision. It also comes with various creative options like in-camera editing, scene modes and live view photography.

The D5100 On contrary, improves on many of the features of the D5000. It offers an image sensor of 16.2-megapixels as well as a 3-inch wide-angle LCD and an autofocus system capable of covering 39 points for precise focus. The camera also has the full HD filming at 1080p, higher burst rate, as well as improved low-light performance.

Although both cameras share many similarities, like the same weight and size, they have a few variations in regards to appearance as well as features and performance. In this article we will examine the differences between Nikon D5100 and D5000 in more depth.

What is the Nikon D5100?

The Nikon D5100 camera is a digital single lens reflex (DSLR) camera which was launched in the year 2011. It was designed for intermediate and entry-level photographers looking for an inexpensive DSLR capable of producing stunning images of high quality.

Nikon D5100 Review

 The camera features an 16.2-megapixel imaging sensor. It also has a 3 inch variable-angle LCD screen, as well as a 39-point autofocus feature. It also supports the full HD 10-80 p HD video recordings, quicker burst rate, as well as improved performance in low light. It also comes with numerous creative features like in-camera editing, scene modes, as well as live view recording.

The D5100 was well-loved by reviewers and photographers alike due to the excellent quality of its images and a wide LCD screen and its improved performance in low light. It was also thought to be among the top DSLRs for beginners available in the year of its launch. The camera is still utilized by photographers of all kinds and is considered an excellent and reliable camera for those who want to start their journey involved in DSLR photography.

What is the Nikon D5000?

The Nikon D5000 is a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera that was introduced in 2009. It was developed to be a basic DSLR with high-end features at a low cost.

The camera features the 12.3-megapixel image sensor as well as it has a 2.7-inch LCD screen that is able to turn out and rotate and has an autofocus 11-point system. Additionally, it has editing in camera as well as active D-Lighting. various scenes and filters that are creative.

D5000 from Nikon

The D5000 was highly praised by reviewers and photographers alike for its high-quality image quality, wide LCD display, and small size. It was thought to be one of the top DSLRs that could be used for entry-level photography in the year of its launch and was a favorite option for photographers wanting to upgrade their point-and-shoot to an advanced camera.

Even though the D5000 is now thought to be a model that is older but it is still being used by a lot of photographers today and is renowned for its durability and reliability. It is still a favorite choice for those searching for a budget DSLR capable of producing quality images.

Nikon D5100 vs Nikon D5000: Difference

Nikon D5100 vs Nikon D5000

The Nikon D5100 and D5000 are both basic DSLR cameras, which were launched within a couple of years. While they have a few similarities, there are certain key differences between the two cameras. Here are a few of the most notable distinctions:


Both Nikon D5100 and D5000 have identical body designs that has a slim and light body that is simple to carry around. Both have a comfortable grip that offers an incredibly secure grip and makes them simple to use over long durations of time.

One notable distinction in the cameras’ LCD screens. The D5000 features an 2.7-inch flip-out LCD, the D5100 is equipped with a larger 3 inch touchscreen that is vari-angle. The vari-angle screen of the D5100 gives you more flexibility when creating shots because the screen can tilt or adjusted to various angles. This allows you to shoot from low or high angles, as well as to capture self-portraits.

Another distinction is the position of the camera’s controls. The D5100 is redesigned control layout that includes a variety of buttons and dials on the rear on the back of the camera. It makes it easier to access the most frequently needed features and setting without needing to go through menus. The D5000 on its other hand, comes with an older-style control layout with all buttons and dials being located on upper part and bottom of the camera.

Both cameras come with a sturdy and sturdy body that is at ease in your hand. The D5100 features a larger and more flexible LCD screen, whereas the D5000 features a more traditional control layout.

Design and build

It is worth noting that the Nikon D5100 and D5000 have identical design and build which is a slim and light body which is comfortable to carry and transport around. Both cameras are constructed with an extremely durable polycarbonate shell. They also come with an ergonomic grip that gives an incredibly secure grip which makes them safe to use for long durations of time.

The D5100 is a bit more elegant design that the D5000 and features a new layout for the control panel that features a live view button and new dial to adjust the brightness. It also features an extra large and flexible 3-inch LCD that can be tilted or rotated in various directions which makes it easy to take photos from both low and high angles, or for self-portraits.

The D5000 is, on the other side, features the more conventional layout for controls which has most buttons and dials being located on upper part on the front of the camera. It comes with smaller 2.7-inch flip-out LCD screen that’s still flexible, it doesn’t have the same flexibility as the D5100’s variable-angle screen.

They are both designed to last and are robust, and have weatherproofed bodies that provide protection from moisture and dust. They also come with built-in flash units, as well as hot-shoe mounts to external units, which allows for more flexibility in lighting.

Both cameras feature an extremely solid and well-constructed body that is well-balanced in the hands. The D5100 has a more sophisticated design as well as an extra large, flexible LCD screen, whereas the D5000 features a more traditional control layout, and smaller screen that can be flipped out.

Image Sensor and Processor

Nikon Nikon D5100 and D5000 have different image sensors and processors which could affect their image quality and performance.

The D5100 comes with the 16.2-megapixel CMOS sensor, which is an increase from that 12.3-megapixel CMOS sensor found in the D5000. The larger resolution of the sensor in the D5100 can result in sharper and more detailed photos, particularly when shooting in bright lighting conditions.

Both cameras utilize Nikon’s EXPEED image processor, the D5100 is equipped with an advanced version, it’s EXPEED 2. This processor provides speedier image processing and enhanced noise reduction. This can lead to better image quality, particularly when lighting is low.

The D5100 also has a wider ISO range, which spans between 100 and 25600. This means the camera will perform better in dim lighting and produces less noise when using high ISO settings. The D5000 is, on the contrary side, has a smaller ISO range between 200 and 3200, which could hinder its performance in low light conditions.

The D5100’s superior resolution sensor, superior image processor, and larger ISO range provide higher image quality and better performance when compared to the D5000. Both cameras are able to produce stunning images that are ideal for different kinds of photography.

Autofocus System

An autofocus (AF) technique is a crucial feature of every camera, since it allows photographers to get sharp focus fast and precisely. It is the case with Nikon’s D5100. D5000 feature different autofocus mechanisms and the D5100 has the most advanced system as compared to D5000.

The Nikon D5100 features a 39-point AF system with nine cross-type sensors located in the middle of the frame. Its AF system is much more sophisticated than the D5000 model, which features eleven points AF system that has only one sensor of this type in the middle of the frame. The higher amount of AF points on the D5100’s system enables more precise focus and the cross-type sensors allow the camera to secure the subject quicker and precisely, particularly in low-light conditions.

The D5100 comes with a variety of sophisticated AF modes, such as subjects tracking and 3D-tracking. These modes utilize advanced algorithms to follow moving subjects in the frame, making sure that they are in focus throughout the frame.

The D5000’s AF technology is still able to produce excellent results, particularly for ordinary shooting scenarios. The more sophisticated AF system of the Nikon 5100 is more to handle more demanding shooting situations, such as wildlife photography or sports.

The sophisticated autofocus system is certainly one of its major benefits over its predecessor, the D5000. It allows to focus more precisely and a higher performance even in difficult shooting conditions.

Capabilities for Video

The Nikon D5100 and D5000 can shoot video, the two models differ between them in their video capabilities.

The D5100 is a more sophisticated camera in terms of video, with the full HD video recording with thirty frames per second. The camera also features an inbuilt stereo microphone as well as an external microphone. This will improve the quality of audio in the video footage. The D5100 also allows users to control the settings for exposure while filming, which can help in creating unique effects.

The D5000 can only record videos at 720p resolution and 24-frames per second. The camera comes with an internal mono microphone it, there is no option for additional microphones. The D5000 does not have the full manual control of exposure settings when filming, which limits the photographer’s ability to control the final output.

Both cameras feature an autofocus feature that operates in video recording, but the D5100’s 39-point AF system is expected to be more effective in keeping the subject in sharp focus. The D5100 comes with an additional 60i/50i frame rate to provide smoother footage when shooting speedy subjects. This feature is something the D5000 doesn’t have.

The D5100 is more efficient camera when it comes to video recordings, compared to the D5000. It comes with all HD resolution, superior audio options, and greater control over the exposure settings. If video recording isn’t your primary concern for you, the D5000 is still able to produce decent quality video.

Viewfinder and Display

Both Nikon D5100 and D5000 have an identical 3-inch LCD display that has 921,000 pixels. They provide clear and sharp image quality for reviewing videos and images as well as for creating photos using live view mode. There are some distinctions in their viewfinder and display systems.

One of the primary distinct features is the articulating display that is present in the D5100, which allows the LCD to be turned out and rotated to give you more flexibility when composing photos from different angles, like low and high angles as well as self-portraits. The D5000, on the other is an LCD that is not movable or tilted. This limits the composition options.

Another distinction could be the system for viewing. The D5100 features a pentamirror-type viewfinder with the magnification of 0.78x and the D5000 comes with a pentamirror viewfinder that is slightly smaller in size of 0.76x. While it’s true that the magnification difference may be small, it could be noticeable to some wearing glasses and/or have particular vision requirements.

The D5100 has advantages of an articulating screen with more flexibility that can be helpful to compose photos in difficult angles or in tight areas The D5000 comes with an identical, fixed LCD screen. The viewfinder is slightly better on the D5100, it’s not a big difference for a lot of users.

Battery Life

Each of the Nikon D5100 as well as D5000 are powered by the same EN EL9a rechargeable lithium-ion battery that can provide adequate battery longevity. There are variations in the performance of the battery between the two cameras.

According to Nikon the D5100 could capture up to 660 images with a single battery charge this is a remarkable feat for an DSLR camera. This could be because of the D5100’s upgraded processing capabilities as well as energy-efficient components. In addition the D5100 features an indicator for the battery on the top of the LCD panel that can provide an immediate and precise indication of the battery’s remaining life.

The D5000 can be used for the possibility of 510 photos on a single battery capacity, that’s a bit smaller than the D5100 still a good amount. The D5000 does not have a battery indicator on its top panel of the LCD that could make it difficult to know the battery’s remaining time. Instead, users must use the battery symbol that appears on the LCD screen on the rear.

The D5100 overall provides an improved battery life and a more user-friendly battery indicator system than the D5000. This can be beneficial for those who require longer shooting sessions or want more precise battery information.


Since these models have been discontinued the prices could be different based on their availability and the state of. When they were first launched in the year 2000, the Nikon D5000 had a list price of $700 USD, for body and only and the Nikon D5100 was listed at a price of $1800 for the body alone.

The prices of both models on the used market may vary significantly based what condition they are in, the shutter count and the accessories included. In general, the Nikon D5100 is generally a bit higher priced than Nikon D5000 due to its modern technology and superior specifications.

ISO Range

Its ISO range is a key characteristic of a camera which determines the sensitivity of the camera to light. For instance, the Nikon D5100 has an ISO range of 100-6400 that can be increased to ISO 25600 when using the Hi2 mode. Nikon D5000 Nikon D5000 has an ISO range of 200-3200. This can be expanded to ISO 12800 when using the Hi1 mode.

The Nikon D5100 has a wider ISO range and can take pictures in low-light conditions better than Nikon D5000. The more recent EXPEED 2 image processor used in the Nikon D5100 provides better noise reduction, making it possible to take pictures at higher ISOs but still retain high quality images.

The Nikon D5100 has a number of enhancements over the D5000 which include a higher quality image sensor with a higher resolution, an sophisticated autofocus system, a larger and more flexible LCD screen, as well as full HD video record. But the D5000 is still an excellent and reliable camera and could be a better value for those who don’t need the advanced features of the D5100.

Comparison table of Nikon D5100 and D5000

Here’s a comparison chart for the Nikon D5100 and D5000:

Feature Nikon D5100 Nikon D5000
Image Sensor 16.2-megapixel 12.3-megapixel
ISO Range 100-6400 (expandable to 25600) 200-3200 (expandable to 12800)
Autofocus System 39-point AF (9 cross-type) 11-point AF (1 cross-type)
Video Capability Full HD 1080p at 30fps HD 720p at 24fps
LCD Screen 3-inch articulating 2.7-inch fixed
Viewfinder 0.78x magnification 0.78x magnification
Battery Life Up to 660 shots per charge Up to 510 shots per charge
Dimensions (W x H x D) 5.0 x 3.8 x 3.1 inches 5.0 x 4.1 x 3.1 inches
Weight 509g (with battery and SD card) 560g (with battery and SD card)
Release Year 2011 2009

Expert opinions

In the time that Nikon D5100 and D5000 were first introduced when they first came out, they received favorable reviews from critics and experts.

Here are some of the reviews from reliable review sites for cameras:

Nikon D5100

  • “The D5100 is a very capable camera that delivers excellent image quality, a well-rounded feature set, and impressive performance” Image Resource
  • “The Nikon D5100’s high resolution, swivel LCD, full HD video, and excellent image quality are impressive for an entry-level DSLR” — PCMag
  • “With its excellent image quality, fast performance, and numerous features, the Nikon D5100 is a strong contender in the entry-level DSLR market” – Digital Trends

Nikon D5000

  • “The Nikon D5000 is a capable and affordable DSLR that’s packed with advanced features” TechRadar
  • “The D5000 offers great features and excellent image quality for the price” CNET. CNET
  • “The Nikon D5000 is an excellent DSLR for beginners and intermediate photographers who want great image quality and advanced features” Photography Blog

The cameras were both well-received by photographers who are experts in the community. Its Nikon D5100 was generally regarded as an enhancement over D5000 and had better performance, image quality, and features. But, the D5000 was a solid, inexpensive option that offered amazing capabilities for the time.

Specifications: Nikon D5000 vs Nikon D5100

Here are the detailed specifications for the Nikon D5000 and Nikon D5100:

Feature Nikon D5100 Nikon D5000
Image Sensor 16.2-megapixel CMOS 12.3-megapixel CMOS
Sensor Size 23.6 x 15.6mm 23.6 x 15.8mm
Image Processor EXPEED 2 EXPEED
ISO Range 100-6400 (expandable to 25600) 200-3200 (expandable to 12800)
Autofocus System 39-point AF (9 cross-type sensors) 11-point AF (1 cross-type sensor)
Metering System 3D Color Matrix Metering II with 2016-pixel RGB sensor 3D Color Matrix Metering II with 420-pixel RGB sensor
Exposure Modes Programmed Auto (P), Shutter-Priority Auto (S), Aperture-Priority Auto (A), Manual (M) Programmed Auto (P), Shutter-Priority Auto (S), Aperture-Priority Auto (A), Manual (M)
Shutter Speed Range 1/4000 to 30 sec., bulb 1/4000 to 30 sec., bulb
Continuous Shooting Up to 4 fps Up to 4 fps
Video Capability Full HD 1080p at 30fps, HD 720p at 60fps HD 720p at 24fps, 640×424 at 24fps
LCD Screen 3-inch, 921,000-dot vari-angle 2.7-inch, 230,000-dot fixed
Viewfinder Optical viewfinder with 0.78x magnification Optical viewfinder with 0.78x magnification
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
External Flash Support Yes (Hot Shoe, Wireless) Yes (Hot Shoe, Wireless)
Memory Card Slot SD, SDHC, SDXC SD, SDHC
Battery Life Up to 660 shots per charge Up to 510 shots per charge
Dimensions (W x H x D) 5.0 x 3.8 x 3.1 inches (128 x 97 x 79mm) 5.0 x 4.1 x 3.1 inches (127 x 104 x 80mm)
Weight 560g (with battery and SD card) 509g (with battery and SD card)
Release Year 2011 2009


The Nikon D5100 and D5000 are both capable entry-level DSLR cameras that offer a range of features for photography enthusiasts. The D5100, released as a successor to the D5000, comes with improvements such as a higher resolution sensor, improved low-light performance, and enhanced video recording capabilities.

Its articulating LCD screen makes it convenient for capturing creative angles. On the other hand, the D5000 remains a reliable choice with solid image quality and a user-friendly interface. The decision between these two models depends on individual preferences, budget considerations, and specific photographic needs.

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