Nikon D5100 vs. D5200

Started Jun 13, 2013 | Discussions
JCB123
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to GerardHaines, Jun 15, 2013

GerardHaines wrote:

JCB123 wrote:

trut_maluglist wrote:

What are the primary differences between the D5100 and the D5200? Are these differences enough to justify the ~$200 price difference?

I think that the two headline differences are the AF module and the image sensor.

The D5100 has the older 11 point AF module that it shared with the D90 and the D5200 uses the 39 point AF module from the D7000. This only really makes a big difference when you are shooting moving subjects using AF-C. The 39 point module is better than the older 11 point module. That's not to say that the older module was incapable though. If you are really into this type of shooting you really need the 51 point system found in the D300s or the D7100 (they are not exactly the same module).The 39 point module allows AF fine tuning which is handy for fast aperture lenses. This ability also adds a task that needs to be done at least once and routinely checked periodically.

The D5100 uses the excellent 16 MP sensor it shares with the D7000, while the D5200 has a newer 24MP sensor. The 16MP sensor provides a remarkable ability to pull shadows up in post that the higher res sensor cannot quite match. I think image quality is a close call. So I think the question is how much value is the extra resolution worth to you vs the ability to pull shadows. If you don't regularly make very large prints but occasionally need to pull shadows then the D5100 might actually be preferable.

I think I would go for a D5100 out of these two. If i was buying a camera for sports action I would save/spend the extra for a D300s or a D7100. Otherwise the D5100 AF is quite adequate. I do like the ability to print really large but I don't do this on a frequent basis and can make large prints from 16MP files with some uprezzing if needs must. The price difference could go towards a lens, flash, tripod etc. That just my opinion though.

Video. Never use it. Apparently the D5200 is better if that matters.

Regards

John

I agree with everything here...just for clarificication, you cannot fine tune the D5200's 39-point AF.

Oops. I made a false assumption about the fine tuning. Thanks for pointing that out.

Regards

John

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Shunda77
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Nonsense
In reply to cmvsm, Jun 16, 2013

cmvsm wrote:

trut_maluglist wrote:

What are the primary differences between the D5100 and the D5200? Are these differences enough to justify the ~$200 price difference?

For $200, get the new body. As others have said, the AF module alone is worth the difference.

In what circumstances?

The AF module is a marketing gimmick that works very well because Nikon get to save a fortune by recycling the innards of the D7000 and playing to the nonsense seen here.

$200 for that AF module is a joke.

Most people never fully use the capability of the module in the D5100 as it is. You gotta wonder how Canon users have coped for so long with an even lower spec AF than the D5100.

Lenses will make a massive difference, the 39 point AF module will give you bragging rights at best.

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KennyXL
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 16, 2013

Shunda77 wrote:

cmvsm wrote:

trut_maluglist wrote:

What are the primary differences between the D5100 and the D5200? Are these differences enough to justify the ~$200 price difference?

For $200, get the new body. As others have said, the AF module alone is worth the difference.

In what circumstances?

The AF module is a marketing gimmick that works very well because Nikon get to save a fortune by recycling the innards of the D7000 and playing to the nonsense seen here.

$200 for that AF module is a joke.

Most people never fully use the capability of the module in the D5100 as it is. You gotta wonder how Canon users have coped for so long with an even lower spec AF than the D5100.

Lenses will make a massive difference, the 39 point AF module will give you bragging rights at best.

You're right.  It takes less time to focus with the center point and recompose than using the 4 way button to shift the centerpoint.  That's not the case if you're setting up a photo in advance, but those on-the-fly shots you're far more likely to catch it by using focus on center and quickly recompose.  I have a D800 and have had the D5100, D5200, D7000, and D600.  I used that method on every single camera as my primary method of focusing.  That's not to say that I didn't use the other method on occasion.  It is, however, nice to have all those AF points for those other situations, but for me, they didn't change the way I photograph things.  I'm sure other people disagree and can make compelling arguments for their method as well.

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cmvsm
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 16, 2013

Shunda77 wrote:

cmvsm wrote:

trut_maluglist wrote:

What are the primary differences between the D5100 and the D5200? Are these differences enough to justify the ~$200 price difference?

For $200, get the new body. As others have said, the AF module alone is worth the difference.

In what circumstances?

The AF module is a marketing gimmick that works very well because Nikon get to save a fortune by recycling the innards of the D7000 and playing to the nonsense seen here.

$200 for that AF module is a joke.

Most people never fully use the capability of the module in the D5100 as it is. You gotta wonder how Canon users have coped for so long with an even lower spec AF than the D5100.

Lenses will make a massive difference, the 39 point AF module will give you bragging rights at best.

So by your logic, everyone should just stick with film and forget digital because so many other great photographers got along just fine without the new tech years ago right? Your logic is ridiculous.

Regarding the AF system, the D5100 is the same as the D90. Ever try to manually manipulate focus points on a D90's 11 point system? Didn't think so. Leaves quite a bit to be desired compared to a 39 point system when quick or creative changes are needed. AF lock and recompose takes on a whole new meaning with the limitation in the D90/D5100. The  AF module in the D5200 also has 11 cross type focal points vs. just one in the D5100. This means that the camera will achieve a more reliable and quicker lock on the subject by using both planes instead of only one. The difference is quite noticeable when I compared the two, and one doesn't have to be a pro photographer to experience the difference. In fact, a novice photographer will have an EASIER time locking on to targets in low contrast situations with the D5200 based on its hardware capabilities.

Typically, I would agree that most people never use even a fraction of what their DSLR is capable of, including myself, but in this case, you are incorrect.

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Shunda77
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to cmvsm, Jun 16, 2013

cmvsm wrote:

So by your logic, everyone should just stick with film and forget digital because so many other great photographers got along just fine without the new tech years ago right? Your logic is ridiculous.

No, my logic is sound, the straw man you just constructed is ridiculous.

Well done.

Regarding the AF system, the D5100 is the same as the D90. Ever try to manually manipulate focus points on a D90's 11 point system? Didn't think so. Leaves quite a bit to be desired compared to a 39 point system when quick or creative changes are needed.

Gee, I guess all my D5100 shots must be blurry and out of focus then.

They're not.

Typically, I would agree that most people never use even a fraction of what their DSLR is capable of, including myself, but in this case, you are incorrect.

In this case, I am correct that $200 spent on extra glass for the D5100 will do immeasurably more for an individuals photography that an occasionally useful 39 point auto focus system.

The fact of the matter is that the D5200 lacks other features that you really need to get the most out of the 39 point AF system anyway.

It is a brilliant marketing strategy that has some practical application, but it's far more minor than people that just purchased the darned thing would like to admit.

It's primary advantage is for the Nikon marketing team in out specing the Canon 700D...oh and giving D5200 owners bragging rights.

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Nexu1
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 16, 2013

If it's $600 vs $800 I'm going D5200 for $800 every time.  If it's refurb D5100 for $400-$470 I'm going D5100 every time.

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cmvsm
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 18, 2013

Shunda77 wrote:

No, my logic is sound, the straw man you just constructed is ridiculous.

Well done.

Straw man? You previously said "You gotta wonder how Canon users have coped for so long with an even lower spec AF than the D5100." You are either ignorant to your own comment, or have no idea what a straw man argument is, as I reflected your position perfectly based on your sarcastic commentary.

Gee, I guess all my D5100 shots must be blurry and out of focus then.

They're not.

I refuse to comment on your skill set, as I haven't seen your images. If you are getting blurry images with your D5100, its not the camera's fault. Just know that going in. That said, a 39 point AF will most likely give you more 'keepers' than an 11 point, especially in active situations. Or I could use your logic and just say that the D5100 is just as capable as a D4 from that perspective, and save myself thousands. And you didn't address my manual adjustment commentary, which means that you either have no clue, or your position on the matter is weaker than I thought....

In this case, I am correct that $200 spent on extra glass for the D5100 will do immeasurably more for an individuals photography that an occasionally useful 39 point auto focus system.

Oh yeah. I forgot. $200 more gets you SO much more of a lens than what one might have started with. Again, I'll take the more capable body that will possibly increase my keepers than making an insignificant upgrade in glass.

The fact of the matter is that the D5200 lacks other features that you really need to get the most out of the 39 point AF system anyway.

Really? Like what?

It is a brilliant marketing strategy that has some practical application, but it's far more minor than people that just purchased the darned thing would like to admit.

In reference to the commentary that you conveniently skipped over, when I manually manipulate focus points, the D5200 is miles ahead of the D5100/D90 in terms of selection and versatility. It's nice to not have to lock and recompose as much as I used to. Try it sometime instead of speaking out of your hind parts...

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Herve5
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to JCB123, Jun 18, 2013

JCB123 wrote

(...)

The D5100 uses the excellent 16 MP sensor it shares with the D7000, while the D5200 has a newer 24MP sensor. The 16MP sensor provides a remarkable ability to pull shadows up in post that the higher res sensor cannot quite match. I think image quality is a close call. So I think the question is how much value is the extra resolution worth to you vs the ability to pull shadows. If you don't regularly make very large prints but occasionally need to pull shadows then the D5100 might actually be preferable.

On this issue, is it correct to consider halving the D5200 resolution would improve its signal-to-noise ratio, ending with a 12 Mp image that would improve shadows "somehow" like a D5100 16 Mp?

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KennyXL
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to Herve5, Jun 18, 2013

Herve5 wrote:

JCB123 wrote

(...)

The D5100 uses the excellent 16 MP sensor it shares with the D7000, while the D5200 has a newer 24MP sensor. The 16MP sensor provides a remarkable ability to pull shadows up in post that the higher res sensor cannot quite match. I think image quality is a close call. So I think the question is how much value is the extra resolution worth to you vs the ability to pull shadows. If you don't regularly make very large prints but occasionally need to pull shadows then the D5100 might actually be preferable.

On this issue, is it correct to consider halving the D5200 resolution would improve its signal-to-noise ratio, ending with a 12 Mp image that would improve shadows "somehow" like a D5100 16 Mp?

All else being equal, if you have larger pixels on the same sensor surface area, then I imagine noise would be better handled.  However, if you just take a D5200 sensor, but only use half the sensor (i.e. the other half is just sitting there idle) then you just get a 12 Mp image with the same noise performance as a regular D5200 sensor, but with half the image size.

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_sem_
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to Herve5, Jun 18, 2013

Herve5 wrote:

JCB123 wrote

(...)

The D5100 uses the excellent 16 MP sensor it shares with the D7000, while the D5200 has a newer 24MP sensor. The 16MP sensor provides a remarkable ability to pull shadows up in post that the higher res sensor cannot quite match. I think image quality is a close call. So I think the question is how much value is the extra resolution worth to you vs the ability to pull shadows. If you don't regularly make very large prints but occasionally need to pull shadows then the D5100 might actually be preferable.

On this issue, is it correct to consider halving the D5200 resolution would improve its signal-to-noise ratio, ending with a 12 Mp image that would improve shadows "somehow" like a D5100 16 Mp?

In principle yes, it is possible trade resolution for noise performance by proper downsampling, and the D5200 isn't bad in SNR scores normalized to a certain MP size at all. But here the problem is pattern noise which makes lifted images look worse than what the SNR score says. This may be partly recovered by banding.

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Shunda77
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to cmvsm, Jun 19, 2013

cmvsm wrote:

Straw man? You previously said "You gotta wonder how Canon users have coped for so long with an even lower spec AF than the D5100." You are either ignorant to your own comment, or have no idea what a straw man argument is, as I reflected your position perfectly based on your sarcastic commentary.

Your film camera reference was a classic straw man argument.

My reference to the canon models was a much more relevant to the discussion.

Gee, I guess all my D5100 shots must be blurry and out of focus then.

They're not.

I refuse to comment on your skill set, as I haven't seen your images. If you are getting blurry images with your D5100, its not the camera's fault.

Are you serious? did you comprehend what I actually wrote?

Just know that going in. That said, a 39 point AF will most likely give you more 'keepers' than an 11 point, especially in active situations.

Most likely? you don't sound so convinced on the $200 investment all of a sudden.

Or I could use your logic and just say that the D5100 is just as capable as a D4 from that perspective, and save myself thousands.

Don't be silly, put the straw away.

Oh yeah. I forgot. $200 more gets you SO much more of a lens than what one might have started with. Again, I'll take the more capable body that will possibly increase my keepers than making an insignificant upgrade in glass.

Are you Joking?

You could get a fast prime, and that combined with the D5100 would give far more capability than a marketing gimmick on your D5200.

You simply will not get more keepers with the D5200 than the D5100, you are grossly over stating (purchase justifying?) the case! It is just not that significant.

The fact of the matter is that the D5200 lacks other features that you really need to get the most out of the 39 point AF system anyway.

Really? Like what?

What was that you said about the D4 again?

In reference to the commentary that you conveniently skipped over, when I manually manipulate focus points, the D5200 is miles ahead of the D5100/D90 in terms of selection and versatility.

So what? while you are messing around with your crappy kit lens "manipulating focus points" the D5100 and the 35mm f1.8 will be producing far superior sharper images at lower ISO.

You don't get it, talk about completely missing the point I was making!

It's nice to not have to lock and recompose as much as I used to. Try it sometime instead of speaking out of your hind parts...

Pot met kettle.

Enjoy the delusion and processing shadow banding.

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millerjs
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to trut_maluglist, Jun 19, 2013

I have a D5200 and had a D5100. They both make outstanding images. I like the images that come out of the D5200 more but that's just personal opinion. The D5100 is still a great camera.

I got the D5200 because I liked the video quality that I saw on some demos so I use it for some personal video projects.

That's where their is a big difference - the video quality and function.

The ISO function menu is also new and give more control especially if you roll video.

If you could buy the D5100 refurb for $400 and get say the 16-85 for $400 used that's some camera package.

Also mentioned in another post the D5200 make big RAW files, really big.

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cmvsm
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 19, 2013

Shunda77 wrote:

Your film camera reference was a classic straw man argument.

My reference to the canon models was a much more relevant to the discussion.

Let's go to school. A straw man argument is a misrepresentation of another's position. Comprendo? I represent your sarcasm to the letter..

Are you serious? did you comprehend what I actually wrote?

Yes I did, but you are too blunt to recognize sarcasm yourself...

Most likely? you don't sound so convinced on the $200 investment all of a sudden.

Yes, most likely. Gear can only take a photographer so far, as there is skill involved as well. You should know first hand with all of the blurry images you said you get with your D5100. As I said before, its not the camera....

Don't be silly, put the straw man away

Again, look up the term straw man...

Are you Joking?

You could get a fast prime, and that combined with the D5100 would give far more capability than a marketing gimmick on your D5200.

You simply will not get more keepers with the D5200 than the D5100, you are grossly over stating (purchase justifying?) the case! It is just not that significant.

You failed to quantify your statement. Not surprising. So a $200 fast 35mm prime is going to assist with sports photography, where the AF module is most relevant? I guess if I need a fast telephoto, that $200 is not going to help me much over the kit zoom right? Think McFly think...

What was that you said about the D4 again?

You still didn't answer the question, but nice try....

So what? while you are messing around with your crappy kit lens "manipulating focus points" the D5100 and the 35mm f1.8 will be producing far superior sharper images at lower ISO.

Far superior images? Guess you haven't looked at the scoring between the two. The new sensor is far more capable, especially in terms of resolving detail, large print sizes and cropping capability.

You don't get it, talk about completely missing the point I was making!

You were making a point?

Enjoy the delusion and processing shadow banding.

Banding? The D5200 and D7100 don't share sensors. Guess you missed that as well.  Again, not surprising...

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Shunda77
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to cmvsm, Jun 20, 2013

cmvsm wrote:

Let's go to school. A straw man argument is a misrepresentation of another's position. Comprendo?

Good gracious, you are astonishing, that is exactly what you did.

Are you serious? did you comprehend what I actually wrote?

Yes I did, but you are too blunt to recognize sarcasm yourself...

Uh huh.

Most likely? you don't sound so convinced on the $200 investment all of a sudden.

Yes, most likely. Gear can only take a photographer so far, as there is skill involved as well. You should know first hand with all of the blurry images you said you get with your D5100. As I said before, its not the camera....

Here's the thing about that, I NEVER SAID IT.

Learn to read for goodness sake.

You failed to quantify your statement. Not surprising. So a $200 fast 35mm prime is going to assist with sports photography, where the AF module is most relevant? I guess if I need a fast telephoto, that $200 is not going to help me much over the kit zoom right? Think McFly think...

You have no idea what you are even saying do you. Your comment is completely off the chart for lack of comprehension of the original discussion.

What was that you said about the D4 again?

You still didn't answer the question, but nice try....

I'm still doing better than you are at this point.

Here's my original comment on this thread for your reference. I stand by it 100%

The days of dramatic increase in image quality between old and new models appear to either be over or at least slowed considerably, there is just not much difference here, in fact, the D5100 is arguably slightly better.

For someone on a budget this represents a very good opportunity to get excellent image quality without having to spend a fortune on a newer body, it also means better lenses can be purchased for less overall outlay.

In my opinion, the $200 you could save buying the D5100 would be far better invested in another lens than on a D5200 body.

Banding? The D5200 and D7100 don't share sensors. Guess you missed that as well. Again, not surprising...

Oh my goodness I'm talking with a turkey!!

Gobble gobble.

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Herve5
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to KennyXL, Jun 20, 2013

KennyXL wrote:

On this issue, is it correct to consider halving the D5200 resolution would improve its signal-to-noise ratio, ending with a 12 Mp image that would improve shadows "somehow" like a D5100 16 Mp?

All else being equal, if you have larger pixels on the same sensor surface area, then I imagine noise would be better handled. However, if you just take a D5200 sensor, but only use half the sensor (i.e. the other half is just sitting there idle) then you just get a 12 Mp image with the same noise performance as a regular D5200 sensor, but with half the image size.

I definitely don't think that's the way it works.

I believe the full sensor is used, and then the pixels are agregated almost on the fly.

This 'averaging' of the noise between adjacent pixels is the very reason noise should decrease IMHO. For instance, in conventional systems halving the resolution results in averaging 4 pixels, which means dividing noise by two. Indeed, with the camera in hand this should be almost testable with a proper image analysis software.

My question was rather to find if someone has more detailed insight about the way the pixels aggregation happen...

_sem_ wrote:

In principle yes, it is possible trade resolution for noise performance by proper downsampling, and the D5200 isn't bad in SNR scores normalized to a certain MP size at all. But here the problem is pattern noise which makes lifted images look worse than what the SNR score says. This may be partly recovered by banding.

Thanks for this reply!

I have difficulties understanding this issue of pattern noise. Could anyone point me to some references on this point?

TIA!

Hervé

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_sem_
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to Herve5, Jun 20, 2013

Herve5 wrote:

I have difficulties understanding this issue of pattern noise. Could anyone point me to some references on this point?

Check threads on D7100 banding / streaking.

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Terry Vickers
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Re: Nikon D5100 vs. D5200
In reply to millerjs, Jun 20, 2013

millerjs wrote:

I have a D5200 and had a D5100. They both make outstanding images. I like the images that come out of the D5200 more but that's just personal opinion. The D5100 is still a great camera.

I got the D5200 because I liked the video quality that I saw on some demos so I use it for some personal video projects.

That's where their is a big difference - the video quality and function.

The ISO function menu is also new and give more control especially if you roll video.

If you could buy the D5100 refurb for $400 and get say the 16-85 for $400 used that's some camera package.

Also mentioned in another post the D5200 make big RAW files, really big.

I agree with all of this.  I have a D5200 and a D7000.

The killer feature of the D5200 is the video quality, in terms of price performance ratio the D5200 is probably the best bang for the buck of any DSLR  if video is your main thing. It's one of the best DSLRs for video in any class. The flip out screen and the RAW video output also add considerably to its video credentials.

Compared to the D7000 the video is possibly 2 stops better in terms of noise performance. Possibly more.

I also prefer the OOC jpegs from the D5200 than from the D7000. I don't know of the jpeg engine in the D7000 is the same as the D5100 but the sensor is the same.

For Raw Files I prefer working with the D7000. I don't really need the extra Mpx/file size and the D7000 probably PPs a little better in terms of shadow performance. Handling is obviously worlds better on the D7000 but I would imagine the D5100 is similar to the D5200.

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cmvsm
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Re: Nonsense
In reply to Shunda77, Jun 21, 2013

Based on your pitiful rebuttal, you have been weighed, you have been measured, and you have been found wanting....

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