206 of 231 people found the following review helpful
Brilliant but seriously flawed,
This review is from: Nikon D3200 Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm VR Lens Kit - Black (24.2MP) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
I've owned a Canon EOS550D for about two years and couldn't resist buying a D3200 out of intellectual curiosity. Would it really give better results or was the increase in pixels a mere marketing ploy by Nikon designed to bolster sales? Here is my summing up.
* Records noticeably more detail than a 550D, even with kit-zoom.
*Subjectively, colour rendition is better than the 550D for greens and reds.
* Virtually no noise up to ISO400. At ISO800, noise is clearly evident, but still acceptable and fine detail smearing is a lot better than with a 550D.
* Excellent dynamic range (better than 550D) and no noise penalty with 'Active D'.
* Well built and extremely compact, yet controls are easy to operate. With a standard lens, you'd think it was a 'bridge'-camera.
* colour fringing due to chromatic aberration noticeable with V.R. 18-55mm kit-zoom (major problem with I.S. 18-55mm kit-zoom on the 550D).
* 11 A.F. points (550D has 9).
* Will follow-focus in video mode (no A.F. available during video with 550D).
* NO METERING WHATSOEVER, with non-AF, manual Nikkor lenses. You have no indication what the correct exposure should be. Not so with the 550D, which retains metering even with stop-down, manual, non-AF lenses used via an adaptor.
*Auto-focusing not available on the D3200 when used with most Nikkor AF-D lenses; only with the majority of G-type Nikkors. For A.F. to work, the lenses must have a built-in motor. With the 550D, all genuine Canon EOS lenses autofocus and give the full range of metering modes, even those EF lenses manufactured prior to 1990.
* Clumsy menu system and viewfinder info. could be more comprehensive (better on the 550D).
* No depth-of-field preview available (the 550D has this).
* I.S. 18-55mm kit-zoom supplied with the 550D gives sharper results.
* Small viewfinder (as with all DX-format DSLRs).
You can not fail to be totally blown away by the quality of the images. For I.Q. this has to be the best value-for-money camera on the market. For those trading up from a 12- megapixel APS-C sensor (or even an 18-megapixel sensor) the difference in quality is substantial. Even with kit zoom 18-55mm V.R., compared to results with a decent prime lens on the Canon, a lot more detail is visible. In short, no contest. I doubt there's a better DX-sensor out there, apart from the Fovean used in the SD1 and nice though it is, the camera is much more expensive and doesn't feature built-in video!
This camera has the potential to make a lot of photographers on a low budget, very, very happy as long as they choose their lenses with care. It represents yet another milestone in the evolution of digital photography to the masses, in terms of I.Q. From a personal perspective, this camera is a godsend enabling me to take action photographs at ISO800 with definition comparable to a slow slide film in years gone by, but with the better depth-of-field that APS-C allows. I just wish Nikon had remained loyal to all those film devotees, with non-AF, non-cpu, lenses. The idea of carrying around a handheld exposure meter,like a Western Euromaster, is just riduculous. On the 550D, you can meter with any lens attached; Nikon really should have designed this to do the same. Brilliant but seriously flawed in my opinion!
Finally, a few words of warning over where not to buy:
Give Simply Electronics a miss; customer service means nothing to them. If you're in any doubt over this, just check them out and read the many tales of woe. Completely untrustworthy from my perspective. Repeated e-mails are largely ignored (or your questions unanswered) and trying to get through by phone is a fruitless exercise, no matter how hard you try (nice little earner?).
Once they've got your money, they intend keeping it and if the item wasn't in stock at the time, then you'll be in for a very long wait. Don't be fooled by their 30-day money back guarantee. On your invoice, it states 14 days and the item must be unused (not entirely clear from their advert). The clock starts ticking from the time your order is placed, not from when the goods are received. Being based in Hong Kong, compliance with E.U. / U.K. trading rules could be difficult to enforce, if you're hoping to use Distance Trading Regulations. If they do agree to a refund, you'll be kept waiting at least a month. In short avoid: go elsewhere to a U.K. based firm you can trust. Beware of Value Basket (they may well be the same organisation). Either way, their reputation is almost as poor.
Give Ebay a miss, because there are too many drawbacks, such as: being sold a poor-quality product, not getting adequate compensation for return postage to China and ending up paying import duties a week after your camera arrives. You may also find that the user's manual is in Japanese, rather than English and that the manufacturer's warranty is invalid.
After 45 days, Ebay wont be held responsible and you can't even leave negative feedback against the scum that sold you duff goods. It's then you versus the integrity of a trader that may be thousands of miles away, whose already let you down (risky)! Sending your camera back for repair using 'signed-for'-mail to China is expensive, but without it you may never see your camera again. Ah but it wont go wrong thinks you. Wrong! Often the items are badly packed and faults may show up a few months later. You'll then see the wisdom of buying from a U.K. trader.
Customer service really is important when spending hundreds on a DSLR. Try using Trust Pilot to guage customer satisfaction. Also,the current Nikon UK cash-back offer (expiring 21st January, 2013) means that grey-imports are no longer worth considering on the grounds of cost saving.
Tracked by 2 customers
Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 21-26 of 26 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Nov 2012 15:43:31 GMT
Last edited by the author on 15 Aug 2013 16:18:36 BDT
To D Jenner:
As far as the point about your use of the term 'chroma noise' is concerned, I think your answer is veering dangerously close to circumvention! Mistaking Chroma Noise for Chromatic Aberration is likely to confuse rather than aid any poor unwitting layperson!
So, am I to take your subsequent answer as confirmation that you DO own other Nikkor lenses - many of which don't AF or meter with the D3200...?
I'm a little bemused by this! You come across as a reasonably intelligent sort of chap, so surely you must have done some research on the D3200 before you bought it...? It's not as if the information is hard to find, after all: advice on lens compatibility is listed under the camera specifications section on the Nikon website, and it's repeated again on page 9 of the brochure - all in plain sight! The only conclusions I can come to are that either you didn't do any checking before you bought the camera (as any sensible person would have done), or you did check but decided to ignore what you discovered: whichever was the way of it, you only have yourself to blame for the outcome!
I'm afraid the real problem here is that you're what I would refer to as a 'marque wanderer', always changing ship - changing from Nikon to Canon, and now back again to Nikon, instead of sticking with the one tried and trusted brand. That kind of behaviour was bound to cost you money in the long run, so there's no point in complaining about it now!
One further point: I don't believe you are strengthening your argument by blaming Canon for a lack of compatability between one or more of its DSLRs and a Sigma lens. Canon has absolutely no responsibility to ensure its cameras function with the lenses made by a third party company such as Sigma: if anything, the onus is on Sigma to make sure its lenses work properly with the cameras they're intended for - that is, if it wants people to buy them in the first place! It's in Canon's own commercial interests to sell Canon lenses for Canon cameras; anything else it decides to do is purely discretionary.
In reply to an earlier post on 28 Nov 2012 23:09:28 GMT
Last edited by the author on 2 Dec 2012 23:16:38 GMT
Mr. D. Jenner says:
Once again, I accept your criticism over the term 'chroma noise' and have now changed it.
The rest of what you say really doesn't make much sense. You accuse me of not doing my homework. Wrong! None of the periodicals I read (A.P., Practical Photography etc) or on-line reviews, made the point clear over the ridiculous shortcoming of no metering with manual lenses. Over your statement regarding Canon, all I can say is that you come across as a salesman's dream.
I'm not going to waste time replying to any more of your comments along the lines both you and other respondents have made, over and over again over whether TTL metering important. You seem to be implying that it really doesn't matter too much being without it, which is utter nonsense.
Challenging a reviewer's criticism is fine by me, but not in the manner you've done by making it a personal attack rather than a concise reply based on logic. It is absolutely pathetic and serves no constructive purpose at all other telling other Amazon readers much about the sort of person you are. Surely you've got something better to do than slag of the opposition in this petty manner.
In reply to an earlier post on 29 Nov 2012 12:31:23 GMT
Last edited by the author on 14 Dec 2012 15:25:36 GMT
To D Jenner.
Well, thank you for that! Actually, I don't consider you as 'opposition' or anything like it: that all sounds a bit too gladitorial!
It seems to me that, in doing your so-called 'homework', you did everything bar exersise some common sense on this issue. You didn't visit the Nikon website at all, didn't spend a few moments reading the brochure...? Ummmh... Are you seriously telling me that someone with your obvious photographic experience did not understand that Nikon had made the change from camera-based control systems to lens-based systems quite some time ago? Really...? If true, that wasn't very clever at all - was it? I managed to find this information without any trouble whatsoever - as, I suspect, would many other people...
Nikon should bear no culpability for your own decision to buy a D3200 when you didn't even bother to undertake these most elementary of checks - nor, incidentally, should the company be at all responsible for the way in which members of the photographic press may write their articles! I sympathise that you may well have a collection of legacy lenses, but there are still numerous examples of used Nikons in the marketplace with which they would have worked: you didn't have to choose a brand new D3200... Rather than 'intellectual curiosity', I believe it was impetuousity - even intellectual arrogance - that led you to buy your D3200! I think you just saw the opportunity to buy a (relatively) inexpensive high megapixel DSLR - to get yourself back into the Nikon fold - and you just went for it, regardless! So let's not continue with this 'it's everybody else's fault' kind of nonsense!
Returning again to your statements about the Canon/Sigma lens problem. I can only reiterate that a company like Canon has absolutely no binding obligation to support the products of a third-party company such as Sigma: I'm afraid the onus of responsibility falls solely on Sigma to ensure maximum compatibility of its products. If the solution entails a 're-chip' to bring it about, then that's what it takes! I use a Sigma 17-50mm f2.8 zoom on my D3200 (a very good lens, by the way), and I would wholly expect Sigma to address any problems/issues that might arise - not Nikon, who have neither manufactured the lens I've chosen to use nor in any way persuaded me to buy it!
One last question: do you now intend to bite the bullet and invest in some fully-compatible lenses for your D3200, or will you just drift back to Canon again...?
Posted on 21 Dec 2012 02:26:16 GMT
M. JAMES says:
After reading the review( which I thought was brilliant but seriously flawed) and the 23 comments ahead of mine, I have to say I found the inevitable spat between a Canon fanboy and a Nikon devotee, like myself, hilarious, pointed, sometimes well informed, other times not, and altogether a most enjoyable enjoyable 45 minutes. So much so, that I thought I should add my own thoughts on this vexed question regarding the 3200's inability to meter with older Nikon glass and limited AF abilities. Last week I bought my wife her Xmas present, a 3200 body in shiny red, which of course I just had to unbox and test prior to wrapping it. I attached a spare 18-55 kit lens and produced outstanding pics on a solitary Sunday morning walk. After a heavy bout of pixel peeping and overall satisfaction with the 3200's output
I carefully reboxed the camera. But after reading the review and it's 23 comments I took it out of the box again, snapped on a 1981 Nikkor 135mm 2.8 Ai-s and guess what? It didn't focus or meter! I cranked up the ISO, set her in manual, guessed the exposure, was a stop out, but perfectly acceptable, and with green dot manual focussing, I had very acceptable pics of my dog sleeping in our well lit kitchen. AF was still a dream in 1981 and only a few old codgers like me will want to use their old lenses on the latest DSLR's, and who, these days, will bother to guess exposure - or who still can? If one was really serious, it's quite easy to find people who will chip most your old Nikon lenses so that they will meter/AF on all mid and pro range Nikon DSLR's. But they wont do so on entry level models like the D3200. So you just stick with AF-S lenses - and there are plenty of them around. Amazon's deal last week was a steal, but you have to know what you are buying for so little money.
In reply to an earlier post on 15 Aug 2013 14:53:58 BDT
Last edited by the author on 16 Aug 2013 14:22:36 BDT
To M James:
At last, a pragmatic assessment of the lens compatability issue!
Mr Jenner's problem has always been an intractable stubborness when it comes to admitting he's in the wrong. Before he bought his D3200, all he had to do was to call up the relevant D3200 page on the Nikon website (a very easy thing to do, I should think, for anyone who is capable of posting Amazon reviews!) and he could easily have found everything he needed to know about the classes of lenses that would work on the camera, and those that wouldn't. It was an elimentary mistake...like saying in his review that all Nikon DX cameras have small viewfinders. They don't: the D7000 and D7100 both have large pentaprisms giving 100% field coverage (and for those who want to know - both cameras will also autofocus with older AF-D lenses because they have supplementary drive motors built into the bodies)
Mr Jenner - it's all about getting your facts straight before you start...!
In reply to an earlier post on 16 Aug 2013 15:09:10 BDT
Last edited by the author on 16 Aug 2013 15:32:31 BDT
Mr. D. Jenner says:
Quintessentially you're saying that TTL metering is not needed (we can do without). Maybe you should inform Nikon of this, though I doubt they'd take it seriously! If you do feel that strongly, perhaps you should start a forum elsewhere about whether TTL-metering is needed with modern-day DSLRs. You might, however, be in for a disappointment if you're expecting others to see things your way! Also, please get your facts right. I never stated that all Nikon DX-cameras have smaller viewfinders than their Canon counterpart, as you seem to be suggesting. Now please, no more on this theme, lest we all fall asleep!