It’s the least expensive camera in the group but also the oldest, and this entry-level model is starting to show its age
DX-FORMAT SLR Nikon D3200 £250, $425 (body only) www.nikon.com
Nobody makes it easier for absolute beginners to get into digital SLR photography than Nikon. Originally announced back in April 2012, the D3200 features the ubiquitous ‘full auto’ shooting mode, a good smattering of scene modes, and all of the more advanced PASM shooting modes. A key element to the camera’s success is that it also includes a ‘Guide’ shooting mode, which acts as a built-in, interactive tutorial on photography techniques and camera settings.
The layout of control dials and buttons is relatively simple, in keeping with the camera’s target market. Even so, there are sufficient direct-access buttons for a variety of important shooting settings, as well as a customisable Fn button. Unlike on the D5200 and D5300, there’s no pivot facility for the LCD screen, but the benefit of this is the extra row of left-hand buttons down the rear of the camera, for additional shooting and playback controls.
We were impressed by the D3200’s performance when it was first launched, but it’s since been somewhat eclipsed by newer cameras like the D3300 and the more upmarket D5300. Compared with these, the D3200’s image quality can be a little lacking in clarity, especially in terms of mid-tone contrast and colour rendition, while metering tends towards slight overexposure in bright, sunny conditions.
Matrix metering for this sunny shot has resulted in the image being too bright