D5500 First Impressions and AF-P lens

Started May 2, 2016 | Discussions thread
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M Morgan Senior Member • Posts: 1,197
D5500 First Impressions and AF-P lens

Really liking this camera.  I also bought the new AF--P 18-55 stepping motor lens.

I'm planning to try some documentary video this summer and the articulating screen will be helpful for that although still photography will be still be 90% of what I task it to do.

First impressions:

1.  It's small and light like the D3300.  I suspect it might even be lighter than mid level mirrorless offerings.  I tend to be liking small and light more and more these days.  It almost seems like Nikon made the D5500 as a near direct competitor to mirrorless.

2,  The touch screen is fantastic and more so than I anticipated.  This basically eliminates the criticism of entry level DSLRs having important settings "buried deep within menus."  Don't get me wrong, it's not a D7100 but everything is rapidly accessible.  If they added a front control dial it would be a home run.  Just pushing the "I" button brings up the main menu and the screen itself can even be programmed as a function button and swiped to change settings.

3.  The new AF-P VR lens is the best iteration of the 18-55 to date.  It focuses instantly and with zero noise.  It is also noticeably sharper than my AF-S version.  A couple of the lens elements have added aspheric glass, maybe that helped.  You need the new Firmware loaded to make it compatible.  At under $100 this is much better than I anticipated.  If I upgraded this it would only be for wider aperture, sharpness is no issue.  It is smaller than previous versions but the barrel extends out much further during use. Although the AF-P lenses are designed with video in mind I think users will be impressed with this for general photography.  I believe this will be replace the AF-S lens as the new kit lens.  No VR on-off switch but this is done in camera for this lens.  Again, paired with this lens I think it's still lighter than mid level mirrorless such as the Sony A6xxx series with lens.

4.  I like the addition of the exposure delay upgrade from the D3300.  Eliminates mirror slap for sensitive tripod work.

5.  In camera HDR is surprisingly useful.  I wish it took 3 images though instead of just 2.

6.  The grip is better than my D3300 which I sold for $325 in less than a day on Craigslist.  The 5500 was $534 refurb from Cameta and worth the upgrade.  The grip fits my big hands well despite some reviews to the contrary.

7.  In LV you can touch the screen to set a focus point which activates the shutter.  Some may not like this for obvious reasons.  The pinch and expand is nice for zooming in when viewing pics for detail.

8.  The viewfinder seems smaller than my D3300...I doubt that it is but it's the one thing I would upgrade if it was possible.

I'm still finding other nifty things I like about this camera.  It will be interesting to see where Nikon takes the D5xxx series next???  Front control dial and 4K video would be awesome.

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f8 and be there...with a Nikon

 M Morgan's gear list:M Morgan's gear list
Nikon D7100 Nikon D5500 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6G VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm F1.8G +6 more
Nikon AF-P 18-55mm F3.5-5.6G VR Nikon D3300 Nikon D5 Nikon D5500 Nikon D7100
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