Nikon is a Japanese corporation that has been in operation since 1917. Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, the company has established itself as a global optics and imaging industry leader. While Nikon boasts a vast product line, this article will focus on two standout cameras, the Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600, released in August 2018 and November 2016, respectively.
Despite the two-year manufacturing difference, the cameras are fitted with some of the most advanced technologies in the optics industry. Below is a review of the Nikon D3500 vs. D5600, including their designs, features, and performance. Let’s get to it!
Nikon D3500 vs. D5600: Side-by-Side Comparison
|Release Date||August 2018||November 2016|
|Sensor||24 MP – APS-C CMOS||24 MP – APS-C CMOS|
|Resolution||Full HD – 1920 x 1080||Full HD – 1920 x 1080|
|Screen||3″ fixed-type screen||3.20” Fully Articulating Screen|
|Size||124 x 97 x 70mm||124 x 97 x 70mm|
|Weight||365g (0.804687 lbs)||465g (1.02515 lbs)|
Nikon D3500 vs. D5600: What’s the Difference?
The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5600 share some similarities but are also vastly different. A common similarity is the APS-C sensor that is fitted in both cameras. Conversely, the cameras have easily identifiable differences like their weight and microphone ports (Nikon D3500 doesn’t have a port). Here’s a technical review of the Nikon D3500 vs. D5600 to help you decide the best-fit option.
A camera’s design is essential as it influences aesthetics, ease of use, and longevity. In this regard, the D3500 and D5600 have a sleek appearance; you may easily mistake one for the other at first glance. They have small light bodies that make them easily portable. Nonetheless, they are heavier than compact mirrorless cameras.
A great feature of the D3500 and D5600 camera design is their button placement. They are adequately spaced, making them easier to operate. However, the D5600 edges out the D3500 regarding grip. Its buttons and edges are a little serrated, making it easier to hold and press when taking photos.
Another critical aspect of the cameras’ design is their size and weight. The D3500 and D5600 have similar dimensions of 124 x 97 x 70mm. Consequently, they easily fit in your palm. Weight is an essential design aspect when considering portability.
Although both cameras are relatively light, the D3500 is lighter, weighing 365g, while the D5600 weighs 465g. The 100g difference may seem insignificant, but it counts if you consider the interchangeable lenses you will be using with the cameras. This is especially relevant, given that the Nikon D3500 and D5600 are designed with APS-C-sized sensors. So, they use a similar spectrum of lenses.
While the cameras have a strikingly similar design regarding aesthetics, they are manufactured using different materials. The Nikon D3500 comprises polycarbonate, while the D5600’s body is mostly carbon fiber. These materials allow you to operate the cameras from 0°C to 40°C. However, carbon fiber is arguably tougher than polycarbonate, making the Nikon D5600 more durable.
Despite these superb design features, the Nikon D5600 and D3500 have a common flaw: they do not have weather sealing. Therefore, you can only use them in good weather conditions, lest you damage them. They are not convenient for outdoor photo shoots. If you need a camera with weather sealing despite the weather condition, consider other DSLR camera options.
As is the norm with modern DSLR cameras, Nikon D5600 and D3500 have a screen at the back. The screen gives you a better view when taking photos and allows you to review the shots in real time. While both cameras are fitted with a screen, they are essentially different.
Firstly, Nikon D5600’s LCD screen is larger, measuring 3.20 inches, while the D3500’s screen measures 3 inches. Thus, the former has a larger view when taking and scrolling through photos, which is quite advantageous.
Nikon’s D3500 camera has a fixed screen, while the D5600 has a fully articulating screen. The D3500’s screen is fixed on the camera’s body, while the D5600’s screen can move freely. With this screen feature, you have heightened flexibility when using the Nikon D5600.
You can take photos and videos when holding the camera at your waist and over your head. You can even take selfies. The versatile shooting positions provided by Nikon D5600’s fully articulating screen give it an edge over the D3500.
Sensors and Resolution
Sensor quality is one of the most essential camera features as it determines the quality of photographs the device takes. The larger the sensor, the more apparent its photos. In this regard, the Nikon D3500 and D5600 have the same quality sensors and resolutions.
Sized at 24 MP, you are guaranteed clear HD-quality photos when using either camera. They have a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and give you impressive control over the depth of field when taking pictures.
Similarly, the D3500 and D5600 do not have anti-alias or low-pass filters, contributing to excellent picture quality. The lack of low-pass filters leads to greater detail as it increases sharpness. However, it also increases the chances of moiré patterns on your photos where specific details look repetitive.
The Nikon D3500 and D5600 are tied in this category as they produce the same quality photos. It just depends on the person handling the cameras.
The autofocus feature in a digital camera is its ability to detect and focus on the object or subject of a photograph. Thus, the greater autofocus a camera has, the more precise the pictures it takes.
The Nikon D5600 beats the D3500 in this category. While the D3500’s autofocus feature has 11 focus points to pick from, the D5600 has 39. The difference is easily distinguishable when taking photographs.
The wide range of focus points allows D5600 users to use either 11 or 39 focus points, quickly locking on the target. As a result, the camera produces clear and refined photos. Although the Nikon D3500 equally has quality photos with its 11 focus points, it cannot compare to the D5600.
Connectivity and Compatibility
Consider compatibility when shopping for cameras; you want one that connects with multiple devices seamlessly. Many photographers and content creators criticize the Nikon D3500 and D5600 for having limited connectivity options.
Given the D3500 and D5600’s limited compatibility, users who want cameras with multiple connectivity options may have to consider other Nikon cameras.
It would be inconvenient if your camera had to be charged every half-hour when taking photos or videos. For this reason, battery life is a vital aspect to consider when purchasing a camera.
Luckily, both the Nikon D3500 and D5600 boast decent battery life. They both operate on EN-EL14a cells, which are rechargeable and long-lasting. However, there is a considerable difference in the cameras’ battery life, as the D3500 is more efficient.
When fully charged, the D3500 takes approximately 1500 pictures, about 30% more than the D5600. The D3500 can also record videos for 60 to 75 minutes before recharging.
Pricing and Availability
Considering a camera’s pricing vis-a-vis its specs is vital in ensuring you get value for money. In this regard, the Nikon D3500 is considerably cheaper than the D5600. Generally speaking, the D3500 is priced at $650, while the D5600’s prices start at $700. They are both readily available on the Nikon website, major online stores, and major retail stores across the globe.
Nikon D3500 vs. D5600: 5 Must-Know Facts
- The DS3500 and D5600 Nikon cameras use similar lenses as they both have an F lens mount.
- The D3500 is not Wi-Fi enabled and, thus, cannot connect to a wireless network.
- The DS5600 has an articulating screen that allows for flexible shooting positions.
- The DS5600 microphone port increases audio quality when recording videos.
- D3500 has a greater battery life than D5600, which enables it to take about 1500 photos when fully charged.
Nikon D3500 vs D5600: Which One Is Better? Which One Should You Use?
Nikon’s D3500 and D5600 are quality digital cameras with superb features. Their high resolutions and quality sensors culminate in them taking clear, professional HD photographs. As such, you may need help deciding which one to purchase.
Arguably, the D5600 is a better option than the D3500. Although it is a bit pricey, it has extra features, like the articulating screen that gives you greater flexibility when taking photos. Similarly, it has a powerful autofocus feature that produces more explicit images.
On the other hand, the D35000 presents a cheaper option with decent picture quality and resilient battery life. Ultimately, your camera pick depends on the specs you prioritize, as well as your financial muscle.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©herukru/Shutterstock.com.