• Price: 499

  • Company: Nikon

  • Pros: Good image results; good value when bought with the 18-55m lens; on-board help guide; Nikon has a wide range of available accessories

  • Cons: No Live View; no in-body stabilisation; no video recording

  • Our Rating: We rate this 7 out of 10 We rate this 7 out of 10

The competent 10.2-megapixel D3000 updates Nikon’s D60. It comes with a vibration reduction (VR) 18-55mm zoom to counteract camera shake, making it a jack-of-all-trades option for newcomers who may buy only one lens. It feels compact and lightweight yet substantial, and its control layout is clean and concise.

Photographers can be up and shooting in just over a second, with maximum continuous capture speed set at 3fps. The camera is quick to lock onto a target too, courtesy of 3D subject tracking and 11 AF points spread across the frame – impressive for an entry-level model. As with most ‘starter’ digital SLRs, however, the optical viewfinder’s eye piece doesn’t jut out very far, meaning that bringing it to eye level squashes your nose against the LCD below.

Sample picture for this camera

The D3000’s combination of lens and sensor provides detailed and crisp results for those looking to achieve professional-looking photographs. Although, in terms of light sensitivity, grain intrudes into shadows from ISO 400, up to ISO 800 it’s kept sufficiently at bay, avoiding loss of detail.

There are, however, a couple of notable omissions: there’s no Live View or any video mode, which has become the norm.
Nikon says that its consumer digital SLRs are cameras that can be ‘grown into’. we’d say that it has come the closest to that statement being true with the D3000.

This review is part of our group test on Digital SLR cameras. Please click here to return to the feature.