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Nikon D3000

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Nikon D3000
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Category: Beginner Amateur – Family DSLR

The Nikon D3000 DSLR is Nikon’s newest affordable entry-level DSLR camera. It replaces the award-winning D60 (or D40 before it). The Nikon D3000 is packed with Nikon’s latest digital technology and know-how found in its more expensive DSLR models. It retains 10.2MP resolution and all the practical features that made its predecessors so popular. Main features are:

  • 10.2 MP resolution (on an APS CCD image sensor)
  • Guide Mode
  • Active D-Lighting
  • PASM
  • RAW
  • Picture Control
  • 3.0 –in. LCD (230K dots)
  • 11-point AF

The Nikon D3000 is meant to be as user-friendly as possible for entry-level DSLR camera users upgrading from a point-and-shoot digital camera. Select the brand new Guide Mode right on the Mode Dial and it displays an easy-to-use interface to walk you thru selecting the appropriate shooting mode and other appropriate settings. The Shooting options are divided into 3 sections:

  1. Easy Operation: Auto, No Flash, Distant subjects, Close-ups, Sleeping faces, Moving subjects, Landscapes, Portraits, Night Portrait,
  2. Advanced Operation: Soften backgrounds, Freeze motion (people), Freeze motion (vehicles), and
  3. Timers and Remote Control.

As you grow more confident with using your camera, you can, of course, bypass the Guide Mode and select the desired shooting mode and settings directly.

A must-have feature that helps both beginner photographers and advanced photographers capture better pictures is Active D-Lighting which restores details in the highlight and shadow areas of an image, ensuring all parts of the image is properly exposed.

The Nikon D3000 also allows beginner photographers to express their creative and artistic side with features such as Soft Filter and Color Online Retouch options. New is the Miniature effect that changes the appearance of distant subjects to make them look like close-ups of miniature models.

The Nikon D3000 DSLR also caters to the more advanced photographers. They have the full PASM modes and can record pictures in RAW for maximum control over image quality. Furthermore, the Nikon D3000 camera also features a Picture Control System that allows key digital image capture characteristics to be customized to suit your exacting personal preferences. You can select the default or customize settings for sharpening, contrast, saturation and hue for the following 6 picture controls:

  • Standard
  • Neutral
  • Vivid
  • Monochrome
  • Portrait
  • Landscape

The D3000 comes with the AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR kit lens which is optically image stabilized. Manual focus is possible. The D3000 also accepts any AF-S and AF-I NIKKOR lenses.

A built-in flash allows indoor photography. For professional flash photography, a hot shoe accepts an external flash. Advanced wireless lighting is also supported when using the SB-900, SB-800 or SU-800 speedlights as commander.

The Nikon D3000 DSLR camera provides an affordable and easy way for those looking to step up from point-and-shoot to digital SLR photography.

If you want Live View, an articulated LCD, and Movie in your DSLR, check out the Nikon D5000 for about US $250 more.

Read our Nikon D3000 Review

Nikon D3000 DSLR
QuickFact™ Sheet
Nikon D3000 US | CAN | UK | Imaging | Microsite
Image Sensor 10.2 million pixels, CCD sensor, 23.6 x 15.8 mm; Nikon DX-format; Dust-reduction System
File Format NEF (RAW), JPEG, NEF (RAW) + JPEG
Viewfinder Pentamirror, 95% horizontal and 100% vertical frame coverage, 0.8x magnification
Shutter Speed 1/4,000 to 30 s
Flash Sync Speed: 1/200 s
Frame Advance Rate 3 fps
Exposure Modes Auto, Programmed auto with flexible program (P); Shutter-priority auto (S); Aperture-priority auto (A); Manual (M), Scene Modes
Exposure Metering Matrix, Centre-weighted, Spot
Exposure Compensation: -5 to +5 EV
ISO sensitivity ISO 100 to 1600, ISO 3200 equivalent
Active D-Lighting ON or OFF
Autofocus 11 focus points with AF-assist illuminator
White Balance Auto, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Direct Sunlight, Flash, Cloudy, Shade, preset manual
Live View n/a
LCD Monitor 3-in.230,000-dot, with brightness adjustment
Movie n/a
Dimensions (W x H x D) Approx. 126 x 97 x 64 mm / 5.0 x 3.8 x 2.5 in.
Weight Approx. 485 g
( without battery, memory card, or body cap)
MSRP Body only: UK £429.99 / €522.00
With AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens: US $599.95 / CAD $639.95 / UK £499.99 / €607.00

Related Links:
Nikon D3000 Press Release
Sample Images | more
DSLR Comparison

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D3000 SLR Digital Camera with 18-55mm VR Lens

Nikon D3000
Body only with 18-55mm kit lens

Nikon D3000 DSLR
Technical Specifications
Nikon D3000 US | CAN | UK | Imaging | Microsite
Type of Camera Single-lens reflex digital camera
Lens Mount Nikon F mount (with AF contacts)
Effective Picture Angle Approx. 1.5 x lens focal length (Nikon DX format)
Effective Pixels 10.2 million
Image Sensor CCD sensor, 23.6 x 15.8 mm; total pixels: 10.75 million; Nikon DX-format
Dust-reduction System Image Sensor Cleaning, Airflow Control System, Image Dust Off reference data (optional Capture NX 2 software required)
Image Size (pixels) 3,872 x 2,592 [L], 2,896 x 1,944 [M], 1,936 x 1,296 [S]
File Format NEF (RAW)
JPEG: JPEG-Baseline compliant with fine (approx. 1:4), normal (approx. 1:8), or basic (approx. 1:16) compression
NEF (RAW) + JPEG: Single photograph recorded in both NEF (RAW) and JPEG formats
Picture Control System Can be selected from Standard, Neutral, Vivid, Monochrome, Portrait, Landscape; selected Picture Control can be modified
Media SD (Secure Digital) memory cards, SDHC compliant
File System DCF (Design Rule for Camera File System) 2.0, DPOF (Digital Print Order Format), Exif 2.21 (Exchangeable Image File Format for Digital Still Cameras), PictBridge
Viewfinder Eye-level pentamirror single-lens reflex viewfinder
Viewfinder Frame Coverage Approx. 95% horizontal and 95% vertical
Viewfinder Magnification Approx. 0.8 x (50mm f/1.4 lens at infinity, -1.0 m-1)
Eyepoint 18 mm (-1.0 m-1)
Diopter Adjustment -1.7 to +0.5 m-1
Focusing Screen Type B BriteView Clear Matte Mark V screen with focus frame (framing grid can be displayed)
Reflex Mirror Quick return
Lens Aperture Instant return, electronically controlled
Compatible Lenses AF-S and AF-I NIKKOR: All functions supported
Type G or D AF NIKKOR without built-in autofocus motor: All functions except autofocus supported. IX NIKKOR lenses not supported.
Other AF NIKKOR: All functions supported except autofocus and 3D colour matrix metering II. Lenses for F3AF not supported.
Type D PC NIKKOR: All functions supported except some shooting modes.
AI-P NIKKOR: All functions supported except 3D colour matrix metering II.
Non-CPU: Autofocus not supported. Can be used in exposure mode M, but exposure meter does not function.
Note: Electronic rangefinder can be used if lens has a maximum aperture of f/5.6 or faster.
Shutter Type Electronically controlled vertical-travel focal-plane shutter
Shutter Speed 1/4000 to 30 s in steps of 1/3 EV, Bulb, Time (requires optional Wireless Remote Control ML-L3)
Flash Sync Speed X=1/200 s; synchronizes with shutter at 1/200 s or slower
Release Modes Single-frame, continuous, self-timer, quick-response remote, delayed remote
Frame Advance Rate Up to 3 fps (manual focus, mode M or S, shutter speed 1/250 s or faster, and other settings at default values)
Self-timer Can be selected from 2, 5, 10, and 20s duration
Exposure Metering TTL exposure metering using 420-pixel RGB sensor
Exposure Method Matrix: 3D colour matrix metering II (type G and D lenses); colour matrix metering II (other CPU lenses)
Centre-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 8-mm circle in centre of frame
Spot: Meters 3.5-mm circle (about 2.5% of frame) centred on selected focus point
Range (ISO 100, f/1.4 lens, 20oC) Matrix or centre-weighted metering: 0 to 20 EV
Spot metering: 2 to 20 EV
Exposure Meter Coupling CPU
Exposure Modes Auto modes (auto, auto [flash off ]), Scene Modes (Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close up, Night portrait), programmed auto with flexible program (P), shutter-priority auto (S), aperture-priority auto (A) manual (M)
Exposure Compensation -5 to +5 EV in increments of 1/3 EV
Exposure Lock Luminosity locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button

ISO sensitivity
(Recommended Exposure Index)

ISO 100 to 1600 in steps of 1 EV. Can also be set to approx. 1 EV above ISO 1600 (ISO 3200 equivalent), auto ISO sensitivity control available
Active D-Lighting Can be selected from On or Off
Autofocus Nikon Multi-CAM 1000 autofocus sensor module with TTL phase detection, 11 focus points (including one cross-type sensor), and AF-assist illuminator (range approx. 0.5 to 3m / 1 ft. 8 in. to 9 ft. 10 in.)
Detection Range -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100, 20oC/68oF)
Lens Servo Autofocus (AF): Single-servo AF (AF-S); continuous-servo AF (AF-C); auto AF-S/AF-C selection (AF-A); predictive focus tracking activated automatically according to subject status
Manual focus (MF): Electronic rangefinder can be used
Focus Point Can be selected from 11 focus points
AF Area Mode Single-point AF, dynamic-area AF, auto-area AF, 3D-tracking (11 points) AF
Focus Lock Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (Single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button
Built-in Flash Auto, Portrait, Child, Close-up, Night portrait: Auto flash with auto pop-up
P, S, A, M: Manual pop-up with button release
Guide Number Approx. 12/39, 13/43 with manual flash (m/ft, ISO 100, 20oC/68oF)
Flash Control TTL: i-TTL balanced fill-flash and standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR using 420-pixel RGB sensor are available with built-in flash and SB-900, SB-800, SB-600, or SB-400 (i-TTL balanced fill-flash is available when matrix or centre-weighted metering is selected)
Auto aperture: Available with SB-900, SB-800 and CPU lens
Non-TTL auto: Supported flash units include SB-900, SB-800, SB-80DX, SB-28DX, SB-28, SB-27, and SB-22S
Range-priority manual: Available with SB-900 and SB-800
Flash Sync Mode Auto, auto with red-eye reduction, fill-flash, auto slow sync, auto slow sync with red-eye correction, and rear curtain with slow sync
Flash Compensation Auto, auto with red-eye reduction, fill-flash, auto slow sync, auto slow sync with red-eye correction, and rear curtain with slow sync
Flash compensation -3 to +1 EV in increments of 1/3 EV
Flash Ready Indicator Lights when built-in flash or optional flash unit such as SB-900, SB-800, SB-600, SB-400, SB-80DX, SB-28DX, or SB-50DX is fully charged; blinks for 3 s after flash is fired at full output
Accessory Shoe ISO 518 hot-shoe with sync and data contacts and safety lock
Nikon Creative Lighting System (CLS) Advanced Wireless Lighting supported with SB-900, SB-800, or SU-800 as commander; Flash Colour Information Communication supported with built-in flash and all CLS-compatible flash units
Sync Terminal Sync Terminal Adapter AS-15 (optional)
White Balance Auto, incandescent, fluorescent (7 types), direct sunlight, flash, cloudy, shade, preset manual, all except preset manual with fine turning
Live View n/a
LCD Monitor 3-in., approx. 230 k-dot TFT LCD with brightness adjustment
Movie n/a
Playback Function Full-frame and thumbnail (4, 9, or 72 images or calendar) playback with playback zoom, playback of stop-motion movies created with D3000, slide show, histogram display, highlights, auto image rotation, and image comment (up to 36 characters)
USB Hi-Speed USB
Audio Video Output Can be selected from NTSC and PAL
Supported Languages Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish
Battery One Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL9a
AC Adapter AC Adapter EH-5a; requires Power Connector EP-5 (optional)
Tripod Socket 1/4 in. (ISO 1222)
Operating Environment Temperature: 0 to 40°C
Humidity: Less than 85% (no condensation)
Supplied Accessories
(may differ by country or area)
Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL9a , Quick Charger MH-23,, Eyepiece Cap DK-5, Rubber Eyecap DK-20, USB Cable UC-E4, Video Cable EG-D100, Camera Strap AN-DC3, Accessory Shoe Cover BS-1, Body Cap BF-1A, Software Suite CD-ROM
Dimensions (W x H x D) Approx. 126 x 97 x 64 mm /
5.0 x 3.8 x 2.5 in.
Weight Approx. 485 g without battery, memory card, or body cap

Specifications and equipment are subject to change without any notice or obligation on the part of the manufacturer.


  • This is a pure advertisement (It sound like a salesman wrote this). I hope that beginners who are thinking of buying this camera goes to other more objectives sites than this one before making their final decision. I’m not saying D3000 is bad, because I own one myself but I’m just saying read more objective websites before deciding what to buy.

  • Hi Mlungisi,

    Believe it or not, thanks for your comments! We always appreciate it when readers take the time to comment.

    The page you point to is our QuickFact Sheet and is based on the camera manufacturer’s marketing material and press release. When we publish a QuickFact Sheet, we do not have anything else to go with. So, yes it can sound a bit “salesmanship.”

    To read our review of the camera, please go here:

    But if you were referring to the review itself, then we’re just wondering, since you have the camera, did you find anything incorrect, untrue or wrong about what was written in the review?

    Many readers believe that reviews, to be useful, must be totally objective. That’s true: all the tests and results must be objectively conducted and recorded. But when it comes time to give the final verdict, you do realize that every recommendation is always colored by the reviewer’s bias. Some reviewers write (and recommend) from a professional photographer’s perspective, others from an enthusiast photographer’s perspective, and still others from a beginner photographer’s perspective. One reviewer might give a high rating based principally on image quality, another will do so based on handling even if image quality is not that great, and far too many include a camera’s current price in their ratings.

    Our perspective here at Photoxels is probably unique among reviewers in that we do not espouse just one perspective when we give our final verdict: we recommend a camera based on its “category” — which target audience it’s for, and we never include price in our reviews. The category part is obvious: We believe there is no point in “highly recommending” a Nikon D3s to a beginner as there is no point in “highly recommending” a Nikon D3000 to the sophisticated DSLR user [though Thom Hogan, Nikon expert, differs with me on this: ].

    For the price part, it can be controversial but here’s our reasoning on this: a camera is good or bad irrespective of its price. If it’s the best camera for you, it’s really up to you to decide whether you can afford it, will save up for it, will wait for a sale, will ask for it as a gift, etc. Price does not change the fact that a particular camera is best for you. A high price does not make a good camera bad for you; a low price does not make a bad camera good for you.

    When we reviewed the Nikon D3000, we loved it as a Family DSLR targeted to beginners upgrading from a point and shoot compact — and I guess it shows in the review. You’ll notice that we do not post reviews as often as some sites do. We test in the field, write, then read and reread and rewrite… until we feel the review truly represents how we feel about the camera. If other reviewers have already reviewed that camera, we will make sure we read their reviews and test our findings against their conclusions. So, we don’t “crank” out reviews by the dozen and you’ll find that we also don’t always make lists of pros and cons. Well, we do now more often than previously, but we have to be very careful about it. This is because some readers misunderstand the lists and reject a camera because at times the cons list is so long and sounds so bad. The result is they miss out from finding the camera that is best for them.

    It bears repeating: The purpose of each of our review is not for readers to find the best camera but the camera that is best for them.

    Often, someone will ask for numbers, ratings, and stars for easy comparison. Unfortunately most readers misapply the ratings review sites give out — and end up buying the wrong camera for their needs. Ratings and studio results are great for comparison, if applied properly. I don’t know about you, but I don’t take pictures in a studio, so these results don’t tell me much. The fact that camera A is better than camera B in a studio setting only proves that camera A is better than camera B in a studio setting — and that finding does not necessarily reflect in the field.

    Let me give you an example. Most review sites take their ISO tests in the studio, with studio lighting. I personally don’t get the point of that [well, I do]. When I take pictures, I don’t use high ISOs when the lighting is bright, only when there is not enough light. So, you’ll see us taking our ISO tests in “normal” low light situations, not just to test out the high ISO but also to see whether the camera can even lock focus! I mean if it can’t even lock focus in low light, who cares how good the high ISO capability is!!! Likewise, if in Auto mode the camera does not have enough exposure latitude [i.e. range of shutter speeds and apertures] to correctly expose a shot in low light, then for all practical purposes it has failed our test as a low light camera. So, if you only look at “studio” high ISO tests [and to be really objective, they have to be taken in a controlled studio lighting setting], you might think camera X has such great high ISO capability. But can it lock focus in low light and does it have the exposure latitude to give correct exposure in low light? For most advanced DSLRs, the answer is probably always, Yes. But for point-and-shoot compacts and the newer entry-level DSLRs, that is not always the case!

    There are lots of review sites out there. If, by objective, you mean a review such as what DPReview puts out, then I submit all other review sites might as well close shop! What is the point of 2 or more “objective” review sites? OK, maybe 2, just to make sure one did not make a mistake. So, we have DPReview and Imaging Resource — and the rest of us might as well fold up. Truth is, no reviewer is 100% objective. That’s why we have many review sites, with each reviewer rating the same camera differently based on personal bias, category, audience, etc. Does not sound too objective suddenly, does it?

    A note about reviewer’s personal bias. That’s not all bad. In fact, as you read the reviewer’s reviews and understands “where he’s or she’s coming from” (i.e. his or her personal bias), you can decide if his or her bias matches yours [and yes, you’ve got one, too] and get a greater confidence that that reviewer’s bias is what you prefer reading about. So when that reviewer says he or she likes a certain camera, chances are you might, too.

    We appreciate your comments and will certainly print them. We hope you have a better idea of our perspective in reviewing cameras. If we only wanted to follow one of the existing sites, there’s really no point, is there?

    Again, thanks for commenting!