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A Brief Nikon D3100 Camera Review

Updated on October 6, 2012

Nikon D3100 camera - Nikon's best entry level digital SLR

As the "Nikon D3100 review" title states this lens is focused solely on the Nikon D3100 camera, which is an awesome digital camera. If you want to know the precise specification about the Nikon D3100 camera you will have to go to one of the thousands of websites that has this information. If, however, you want to know what the Nikon D3100 camera is like to live with on a day to day basis, what this digital SLR camera is capable of and the type of accessories available to help you get the most out of the Nikon d3100 digital slr camera then please read on.

Nikon D3100

If you are looking to buy your first digital SLR camera you can't go far wrong with the Nikon D3100. This entry level digital SLR camera is packed full of features, easy to use and is the ideal tool to get you moving in the right direction. Moving from compact cameras and point and shoot cameras to a digital SLR is a big step but the Nikon D3100 will help make it a smooth and easy one.

The Nikon d3100 camera is Nikon's entry level digital SLR camera. The D3100 is the base model that is designed to encourage potential digital SLR camera users to pull their finger out and actually buy a digital SLR camera as well as encouraging compact camera and bridge camera users to upgrade to a digital SLR camera.

I have already stated in this lens I am not going to go in to minute details about the specification of the Nikon D3100 camera, however I do think it is worth briefly pointing out the Nikon D3100 camera's main features.

The Nikon D3100 camera is constructed around a 14.2 CMOS sensor and a 3 inch LCD screen. Thanks to the Nikon guide mode and on board assistance learning to use the D3100 is child's play and so quick to do. If you like to shoot movies and video footage for Youtube and other such sites the Nikon D3100 camera will be ideal for you as it includes full 1080p HD cinematic video with full time autofocus and sound.

Digital SLR cameras have a lot of features, many of which the majority of photographers never use, and can be quite daunting to beginners. Moving from a compact camera where all you have to do is "point and shoot" to a digital SLR camera where you have use the best settings, compose the shot and actually think about what you're doing is a big step and the features of a digital SLR camera put many people off. If beginners are to try using a digital SLR camera it has to be user friendly, and it is this feature that is the Nikon D3100 camera's biggest selling point.

Compared to other entry level digital SLR cameras the Nikon D3100 camera is very easy to use even though it is jam-packed full of features. You are going to need to get the training manual out and read it, but you will soon find yourself up and running in no time at all, even if you have never used a digital SLR camera before.

The 14.2 CMOS sensor is huge compared to other entry level digital SLR cameras and the image quality you can get with the Nikon D3100 camera is simply awesome. The image quality is not going to be the same as that of professional spec digital SLR cameras, but this is to be expected. That said, the Nikon D3100 camera can easily capture images that can be blown up to poster size of good quality.

As far as digital SLR cameras are concerned the Nikon D3100 camera is small, light and transportable, which means you can have it on your person at all times so you will never miss a photo opportunity again. In order to improve your photography skills you need to take photographs whenever you get the chance and the Nikon D3100 camera gives you the chance to do this.

Overall the Nikon d3100 camera is an excellent entry level digital camera and one that is well worth looking in to if you are thinking of upgrading your current compact digital camera. The Nikon d3100 camera is capable of producing some excellent images, as well as movie footage, is easy to use and is light and can be taken anywhere. The Nikon d3100 camera may not be the cheapest entry level digital SLR camera around but it is full of features and represents great value for money.

If you want to get the most out of your Nikon d3100 camera and take the best photos you possibly can, you are going to need some accessories. You can take good images with the Nikon d3100 camera and the kit lens straight out of the box, but if you want to take great images and take your photography to the next level you are going to need to get your credit card out and spend a bit of money.

Overall the Nikon d3100 camera is an excellent entry level digital camera and one that is well worth looking in to if you are thinking of upgrading your current compact digital camera. The Nikon d3100 camera is capable of producing some excellent images, as well as movie footage, is easy to use and is light and can be taken anywhere. The Nikon d3100 camera may not be the cheapest entry level digital SLR camera around but it is full of features and represents great value for money.

In depth review of the Nikon D3100

For an in depth and hands on review of the Nikon D3100 cmaera take a look at this video, courtesy of Youtube.

Nikon D3100 Camera Accessories

If you want to get the most out of your Nikon d3100 camera and take the best photos you possibly can, you are going to need some accessories. You can take good images with the Nikon d3100 camera and the kit lens straight out of the box, but if you want to take great images and take your photography to the next level you are going to need to get your credit card out and spend a bit of money.

Lenses

One of the best things about digital SLR cameras is the ability to change lenses to suit a variety of different shooting styles, and the Nikon D3100 camera is no different. It doesn't matter whether you want to shoot portraits, sports, motor sports, wildlife, landscapes, seascapes or architecture, there will be a best buy lens to enable you to do this.

Portrait lens

Photographers love taking pictures of friends and family and portrait photography is one of the most popular types of photography. There are loads of good portrait lenses and the good thing is you don't need to spend a fortune in getting a good one that is capable of taking exceptional images.

Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras

This Nikon 50mm f.18 is an eceptionally brilliant lens that will take your portrait to the next level. The image quality is simply superb and the wide maximum aperture leads to a tack sharp subject against a nicely blurred out background. One of the best things about this lens, other than the image quality of course, is the price. This is a cheap lens that gives you great value for money.

The lens may not be made of the highest quality materials but if you look after it this lens will provide many years of service. This lens is one that is definitely worth buying.

 

Filters

Many photographers are under the impression that filters are not needed in the world of digital photography since all effects can be achieved when editing the images. In reality, this is not the case and all photographers should use filters.

One of the most important filters is the basic ultra violet or "UV" filter. This is a clear filter that removes the haze from images, although if you shoot without a UV filter haze won't be a problem. UV filters are perfect for protecting the front elements. It is far cheaper to replace a scratched filter than buy a new lens.

The circular polariser filter or "CPL" is another essential lens all photographers should have. This filter polarizes the sunlight and cuts out unwanted reflections. When using one of these filters skies appear bluer, greenery appears greener and the colours are more vibrant and punchy.

The neutral density or "ND" filter is another essential filter to own. This filter is used to artificially create longer exposures that allow you to create a sense of movement in your images. Have you seen those images where water appears milky? Have you seen those images where clouds seem ethereal? These effects are achieved using ND filters and it is impossible to replicate this during the processing stage.

If you want to get in to the world of macro photography and can't afford to buy a dedicated macro lens then close up filters is the answer. Close up filters are effectively magnifying glasses for your camera which makes the subject appear bigger.

Opteka 52mm HD Multi-Coated Variable Neutral Density (2-8 Stops) Fader Glass Filter
Opteka 52mm HD Multi-Coated Variable Neutral Density (2-8 Stops) Fader Glass Filter

One of the most useful filters you can get is the neutral density or "ND" filter, which are available in many different strengths. Rather than buying, and subsequently carrying, many different filters you can buy this variable ND filter, which covers all your requirements in a single ND filter.

This is a top quality filter and worth buying for your Nikon d3100 camera.

 

Flash guns

The Nikon D3100 camera comes with a built in flash although it is quite poor. The built in flash will provide a small amount of light in low light conditions or it can be used to provide some fill in light as required, but it isn't that great. If you are serious about your photography you are going to need an external flashgun that will provide a bit more oomph.

Nikon SB-900 AF Speedlight Flash for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras
Nikon SB-900 AF Speedlight Flash for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras

A flash gun is a vital accessory for a number of different shooting situations. Flash guns aren't only used to provide light in dark conditions, oh no, they are also useful to fill in the shadows when shooting in to the sun, therefore you need a good quality one. If you want the ultimate in power and control the best flash gun for the Nikon D3100 camera, and any other Nikon digital SLR camera for that matter is the SB900.

The SB900 is powerful, packed full of features, tough and durable and will be good enough for all your flash photography needs.

 

Memory cards

The Nikon D3100 camera uses SD, SDHC and SDXC memory cards to store images. These memory cards are readily available and sold almost everywhere. These memory cards are also cheap, which makes them perfect for people with all budgets.

Transcend 32 GB Class 10 SDHC Flash Memory Card (TS32GSDHC10E)
Transcend 32 GB Class 10 SDHC Flash Memory Card (TS32GSDHC10E)

The Transcend brand offers great value for money. They are not the fastest SD card, but then unless you are shooting high speed sports photography and firing off a dozen or more frames per second you don't need a high speed SD card.

I have tried various different SD cards yet I always find myself coming back to the Transcend brand, unless I am shooting motorsports of course. I find the Transcend brand offers the best compromise between quality, reliability and price.

 

For all your Nikon accessories!

If you have any thoughts, ideas or comments please feel free to note them in my guestbook. If you own a Nikon D3100 and have any experiences, tips or advice you want to share with D3100 owners and potential Nikon D3100 owners please feel free to note them down as well.

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