Nikon D3100 DSLR Camera Review
Cameras & Equipment

Nikon D3100 DSLR Camera Review

About the product

The Nikon D3100 is a DX-format 14.2 Megapixel camera that is designed to be used by beginners. The camera is a preferred consumer-grade production that answers advanced photographic needs with its VR image stabilization programs and CMOS sensors. The camera enables you to capture high-quality images and full HD videos as well. It’s an entry-level DSLR with different photo features that would help the beginners in taking more creative pictures. It has one-touch full HD video capture along with sharp and smooth autofocus adjustments. Moreover, it boasts of a Live View mode, a sensor dust buster, and wide autofocus (11 points) as well.

Nikon D3100 DSLR Camera Review

The camera comes with an even wider ISO range. You would be able to shoot within 100-3200 ISO range, which is expandable up to 12800 points. As a result, you would be able to shoot better in any kind of lighting conditions. There would be lesser hard shadows, a lower amount of red eyes, and better sharpness in the pictures. The camera is small and handy and is well suited for handheld shooting. The plastic model comes with a comfortable rubber grip, which is definitely a big feature at this price point. The Nikon D3100 also has a built-in microphone and comes with a lens kit too.

The lens supplied with the camera is an 18-55mm image stabilization VR lens, native to Nikon. Additional features include active D-lighting, 6 auto-exposure scene modes, and a 3-inch screen. The camera is available for $426.95 which makes for a $73 (or 15%) saving on the original price of $499.95. The item qualifies for Free Shipping anywhere in the United States. You also have the option to get the camera gift wrapped for delivery. The product comes with a 5-year warranty and has earned 4.6/5 ratings on Amazon.

Product features and specifications

  • DX-format beginner level camera with CMOS sensor
  • 14.2 megapixel high-quality image capture
  • Includes high-quality NIKKOR VR image stabilization lens (18-35mm) for clear and vivid pictures quality
  • 1920×1080 Full HD cinematic video capture
  • Fast and smooth 11 point autofocus system for sharper images
  • ISO range of 100-3200, expandable to 12800 sensitivity for extremely low light image capture
  • The new Nikon EXPEED 2 image-processing engine for better picture results
  • Active D-light, 6 auto-exposure scene modes, and picture control
  • A built-in pop-up flash unit
  • Auto camera cleansing airflow control
  • 5 pounds shipping weight, 1.3 pounds item weight
  • Includes 2 li-ion batteries
  • A total of 5-year warranty (1 year international and 4 years extended USA warranty)

Positive Reviews

The camera is extremely user friendly and designed for the total beginner. As a result, it is simpler and easier to handle. It is lightweight and affordable too. In spite of its all-plastic body, it comes with a fairly chunky rubber grip that helps you shoot better in the handheld mode. One of the most popular features of this camera is the ISO range. Many of the customers who purchased this camera from Amazon suggest that the ISO range of 100-3200 has been quite helpful for them in clicking pictures, both indoors and outdoors. Because of the 12800 expandable ISO sensitivity, they find better captures even in extremely low light conditions.

The kit lens is usually criticized in many cameras makes. However, the 18-35m kit lens of the Nikon D3100 is a Vibration Reduction Image Stabilization lens. It is designed with the NIKKOR technology, because of which the beginners would easily be able to take some great shots without much worry. As per the customer reviews, the camera is super easy to use and comes with many customization options. However, it is a breeze for those who like flash photography. The autofocus of the camera with its AFS lens is quite commendable too. The one thing that sets this camera apart from others is the price range. You would hardly get a great camera with a lens kit under $500 anywhere.

The cinematic full HD movies are totally awesome and give the high-end cameras a run for their money. The video capture works fairly well in different resolutions and the camera autofocus ensures that you do not have to mess much with the settings. All the information and specifications related to video and image capture are laid out on the screen, so you don’t have to look at the top of the camera again and again. This enables better video shoot on the tripod, especially if it is placed high.

Negative Reviews

The camera does not offer bracketing because of which it might become a problem for the users. However, this can also be a positive point to some of the users, who wish to be three times sure of the pictures that they have clicked. Overall, it is not such a great drawback, and deleting the pictures takes only a second or two. Another one of the areas where users complained was the slow LCD screen. However, this is not an issue that echoed with many customers on Amazon.

People definitely talked about the auto ISO override in the manual mode. Though it is definitely easier to use the auto ISO (as it is easy to handle, fast and gives very quick results too) you might not like it all the time. If you feel that the auto ISO is a problem with you, you can take a minute off your schedule and manually set the ISO. Therefore, even this issue is not as big a drawback. However, you must not try to use autofocus if you have older lenses. The camera can perform autofocus only when you are using newer AFS cameras. For older or more advanced photographers, this might not be a choice but first-time buyers would have nothing to worry about.


For a beginner, there can be nothing greater than the Nikon D3100. It is compact, lightweight, and very affordable too. The best thing is that the image capture is of an exceptionally high quality which makes this camera a must-have if you have just started to look at the world through the lens.

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