34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
A great little camera if a little pricey,
This review is from: Nikon D3200 Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm VR Lens Kit - Black (24.2MP) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
My reason for buying this camera is perhaps a little different to most of the people that will be buying it. I am a professional photographer and live in rather dangerous parts of the world from time to time (currently in Libya) so I need a camera that delivers both quality but isn't too visible and is disposable enough for me to hand over if asked at gun point. It happens!
I looked long and hard at two other alternatives, one being the Canon Powershot G1x and the other being the Sony NEX-7. Out of the three the Sony is without question the one to have if you are looking for amazing image quality in a small package and the Canon, whilst being a lovely piece of kit just required too many performance compromises from my side, so the Nikon was the obvious choice for me. So why didn't I go for the Sony? Well it is just too expensive. The body is around £1,000 plus lenses and that is beyond my budget for a back-up. The Nikon suits me as I am well invested in Nikon pro equipment and I have plenty of old lenses I can put on the front.
So what about the camera? Well as I have already alluded to I use it as a back up to my pro Nikon kit but it would be unfair to compare it to equipment costing 5/6 times as much although the comparisons are there to be made. I have shot several projects with this camera and I really like it. There are of course elements from my pro kit that I miss but overall the camera performs really well, especially in low light and the most important thing for me is that the image quality is pretty good whatever the situation. I have had photographs from this camera used by a lot of press agencies and never have I had a negative comment in respect to image quality. I do get the occasional strange look from my fellow journo photographers when they compare their large cameras to my little Nikon but this often works in my favour as I make easier progress through check points and security inspections as this camera doesn't stand out as `journalist' equipment. With an old DX 18-200mm VR lens on the front this camera is good to go and I am happy with the results although the images are a little soft when compared to my D800 or D3x, but this it isn't anything that the computer can't deal with in post-processing. If you are familiar with Nikon kit then you won't have to look twice before you are using it like you have had it all your life.
The video function suffers from the same issues that the D800 & D4 do, namely that it relies on contrast detection which means the camera will focus hunt, especially when panning so a more planned approach requiring manual focus is normally required. The output quality is fine though for this level of camera. If you are after a camera with lots of extra functions and special effects then there are probably better options out there for you, however if you are after a robust, simple to use, quality camera then look no further. It's a cracking little photographic tool. In many ways it reminds me of my first Nikon which was a Nikon FM2. I have had that one for over 30 years now, so I can really can't say any more than that!