Should I upgrade?

edited August 2015 Posted in » Nikon D3100 Forum
I have the Nikon D3100, and I noticed that it was discontinued. Should I upgrade to a newer camera?


  • edited August 2015
    I would not upgrade unless you find the D3100 inadequate in some way that a newer model would correct. Newer models always have some attractive features, but not everyone needs them. I'd put my money into better lenses and wait a couple more generations, or until the camera breaks, before worrying about it. After all, if a camera was good when it was made, it is still good now unless it's broken.

    The D3200 has higher pixel count and better high ISO performance than the D3100, and a very slightly better viewfinder, and also allows use of an IR remote shutter release. Video performance is a bit better too, I think. Little else is different. I have a D3200, also now discontinued, but have no immediate plan to upgrade. It does its job well, and the longer I keep it, the cheaper it becomes to own. A great camera to travel with.

    The D3300 has a slightly sharper sensor than the D3200, another tiny improvement in the viewfinder, and another boost in high ISO, and a panoramic option, and little else as I recall.

    The D5xxx family has gone through a similar evolution, and has a bit better AF performance, a swiveling rear screen, and some other options you may never need, but the image quality is similar. The D5500 looks pretty nice.

    The D7xxx family is a big leap, with a much better viewfinder, many more features, and a built in AF motor and metering tab that allow you to auto focus with older AF lenses, and to meter with older MF lenses. It's also more weather-resistant, and more robustly made, and uses a bigger battery, has two memory slots, allows fine tuning AF performance for individual lenses, and custom settings. The D7100 and D7200 have superb AF performance, and if you favor birds in flight, and the like, consider the now discontinued but still very fine D7100.

    But a good picture is a good picture. If you get what you want with the D3100, then it's doing its job well. A good lens well used will give you fine results on any camera that isn't broken. You can buy a used D70, with a 6 megapixel sensor, for something under a hundred bucks, and if you use it right you'll still get fantastically good pictures.
  • Thanks! That was super helpful!
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