The D5200 is an excellent new camera from the house of Nikon. The D5200 comes as an upgrade to the very popular D5100. The camera has a great autofocus feature. Much like its predecessor, it also has a movable LCD screen and the Live View feature that allows you to shoot images and movies while holding the camera remotely.
The D5200 has the amazing 24 megapixel sensor of the D3200, the AF capacity of the high-end D7000 and is also available in two unique shades – red and brown. These features set the camera apart from many of its competitors. Additionally, the camera is quite light and has a hollow feel to it, making it easy to carry around.
The D5200 doesn’t have all the functions and features of a D7000, but that is alright simply because most of the people don’t even use these features. The D5200 is therefore a fine option for those people who look to shoot great images with a camera that is competitively priced (the D5200 is priced at $800).
The D5200 does not have an AF motor fitted inside it. Therefore it won’t AF with an original-style screw-drive autofocus lens. It does not autofocus, but it does practically all other things with near perfection. The only thing that you have to do is manually focus the lens. Like many other entry level DSLRs from Nikon, the D5200 also works very well with AF-I and AF-S lenses.
If you are looking for a lens recommendation, then you could opt for a 35mm f/1.8 DX lens instead of an 18-55mm VR kit zoom. So you can just opt for the body of the D5200 camera and get the 35mm f/1.8 DX lens individually.
Sensor resolution (type) 24MP CMOS
Autofocus System 39 AF points (9 cross-type)
ISO sensitivity range 100-6400 (H1 and H2 expansion up to 25,600 equivalent
Display size / resolution Articulated 3″, 920k-dot LCD
Maximum frame rate (DX mode) 5 fps
Movie Mode 1080 60i/30p
Battery life (CIPA) 500 shots
Sensor resolution (type) 24MP CMOS
Dimensions 129 x 98 x 78 mm
Weight 550 grams (with battery and card)
The Nikon D5200 is a brilliant camera that is capable of shooting images and videos of the highest quality. Let us take a look at the individual features and how they perform.
The D5200 is fitted with a powerful AF. The default settings are good enough to capture sharp images as in this setting the camera fetches the best available sensor (according to the scene, amount of light, etc) and puts it to maximum use. If you want to alter the AF settings, you have to go to the main menu that is displayed on the LCD screen. The default AF takes good images most of the times, but if it is too dark, you may have to change the settings
The finder in the Nikon D5200 is pretty tiny. It does not use glass so we have a non-glass prism here.
The D5200 is a light camera and that makes it easy to carry it around. The buttons, all of them except the menu button, are placed on the right side and this allows the user to access them with just one hand, making the process faster.
The shutter is perhaps the part of the camera that performs the best. It is even, practically free of all noises and very refined. There is a “QUIET’ feature, but it does not do too much so it’s best avoided. Then, you can alter the delays as well. The default setting here is 10 seconds, but you can choose to have delays of 2 seconds, 5 seconds and 20 seconds as well. To do this, you have to go to the Custom Function C3.
The exposure is brilliant in the D5200 and it can pick up the light change in a scene accurately. The best way to understand this is to click a birthday cake when the candles are being blown out. If you do this, you will immediately notice how easily and perfectly the exposure is adapted to by the camera. It is also capable of taking sharp and clear pictures in the dark with an improved ISO feature.
Auto White Balance (AWB)
The AWB feature is quite impressive in the Nikon D5200. The camera captures beautiful shots under bright lights such as halogen lights. When there is neon light around, the pictures have a green tinge. This is common in all DSLRs and so the D5200 cannot be faulted for it.
Flash (In Built)
The built in flash is pretty strong. However it only functions in the traditional TTL mode and does not compliment any other external flashes that may be used. Both recycling and exposure are amazing with the built in flash.You can see a pre-flash when the shutter button is pressed halfway down.
The Nikon D5200 has a super feature – it is the first camera to have an in built stereo mike that allows you to have stereo quality sound in the videos you make. And along with HD and AF features, you end up with pretty solid quality videos.
The performance of the battery is excellent in the D5200. You can click about 1000 images between two charges. The only problem is that the charge light indicator flashes a bit too slowly, confusing the user at time. This however is a minor problem and can be tackled without any issues whatsoever.
The LCD display of the Nikon D5200 is absolutely brilliant. The sheer high density of the pixels makes the display crystal clear and soothing to the eyes.
The rendition of color is pretty awesome in this camera. Many users also say that the colors are completely unbiased and so the D5200 has a better color feature than some of the more advanced FX cameras such as the D600, D800 and D4.
The playback feature is well defined and the user can access it to view or even zoom with just one hand, making it easy and fast to access.
The Final Verdict – Should I buy a Nikon D5200 camera?
Even while the D5200 is a great new camera from the house of Nikon, it cannot be denied that it is rather steeply priced at $800. This becomes even more apparent when you see that the D5100, which practically has all the features of the D5200, is available at half the price! So rather than paying $800 for a D5200, you can get a new or used (but working) D5100 at $400 or even less.
If you are a sucker for features and upgrades, then it would make more sense for you to go for the D7000 which is sold at an additional price of just $100. If you are okay with a fixed screen, opt for the D3200 or the D3100 which are available for less than half of the value!
The bottom line here is that all the above mentioned cameras will click great photos if you know how to use them properly and vice-versa. So do your research and choose wisely and you will find the best camera for yourself.