So now we know. The D3200 announced last night, and it looks to be a pretty strong little camera: 24 megapixels, 1080p movies, 11-point autofocus system that now works while shooting video, improved ISO range (6400 with a HI setting for 12,800, which probably won’t be all that usable), upgraded 4 frames-per-second shooting and the ability to add the Nikon Wifi module. It appears it is only available in a kit with the 18-55 VR lens, which is a pretty nice lens. For some reason Nikon keeps making special-edition colors of this camera. There is a screaming red version of this camera if that rocks your socks.
For $699, it is a lot of camera, and appears to be a very good starter/travel/entry SLR, at least on paper. There really isn’t a pothole to fall in these days in the Nikon or Canon SLR families – they are all good products. Honestly, if you’re scouring the internet trying to decide between Canon and Nikon, I’d say just buy the one you can find the best deal on unless you have some other reason to pick a brand like a family member with a lot of lenses they could loan you.
For me, the D3200 is an important window to where Nikon is going: more megapixels and more video. I’m still not screaming for either – I want clean ISO 3200 and 6400. What it means for the D400 is that 24MP is almost a guarantee. I’m sure we’ll get more video as well.
I’m not sure where Nikon is going with SLR’s these days. Everything seems very evolutionary and stepwise. There isn’t much going on from an innovation perspective that separates them from Canon, which is in the same boat. Somewhere there are new features and designs that people want – Nikon and Canon should figure it out. I’m also frustrated that great features like the U1/U2 presets in the D7000 aren’t in newer cameras like the D800. It is a great and useful feature. Share.
If I was in the market for a camera in this general category, I think the D5100 would still be my choice. Among other things, the ISO performance is likely to be better and the flip out screen is handy if you’re using the camera for video. I also can’t get over how small the D3x00 cameras are in my hand.
I guess we’ll continue to wait and see what Nikon’s next announcement brings…