Nikon's new DSLR, the upper-entry level D5100, has many features to help you shoot exceptional still images or full HD movies. This successor to the popular D5000 features a 3-inch (7.5cm), 921k-dot, side-opening vari-angle LCD screen, with a wide view angle, which allows shooting at virtually any angle, using the Live View function. A 16.2 megapixel DX-format CMOS image sensor delivers lifelike images with vivid colors, reduced noise, and smooth tonal gradations. Its high ISO (100-6400) light sensitivity is manually extendable up to 25600 to enable faster shutter speeds for finely detailed images with minimal noise, when shooting fast-moving subjects or capturing images in low light.
New to this model is a special effects mode, accessible from the mode dial, which includes Selective Color (choose up to three colours to appear in the still or movie while other areas are monochrome), Miniature Effect (which creates the look of miniature scale), Color Sketch (to produce photos or movies in a drawing style), and Night Vision (for movies with a gritty appearance or when shooting in extreme lighting conditions). The Picture Control system offers Standard, Neutral, Vivid, Monochrome, Portrait, or Landscape settings, while Scene Modes include Portrait, Landscape, Child, Sports, Close-up or Night Portrait.
- D-Movie full HD (1080p) movie clips: a dedicated movie-record button allows rapid switching between recording stills and movies. The camera supports use of an external microphone and offers 30p, 25p and 24p frame rates.
- HDR (High Dynamic Range) imaging: takes two shots within a single shutter release to create an image with an extremely wide dynamic range, low noise and rich color gradation.
- Retouch Menu: for editing and enhancing photos and movies in-camera, this function includes effects and filters including Perspective Control, Soft Focus, and Color Outline.
About The Author: Jon Sparks is an award-winning photographer and writer specializing in landscape and outdoor photography. He has travelled and photographed in Pakistan, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and Morocco as well as most European countries and supplies images to the global libraries Corbis and Alamy as well as selling images directly through his own library.