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Nikon Announces D5200 DSLR with 24MP DX Sensor & 39-point AF System
By Alvin Soon - on 6 Nov 2012, 12:00pm

Nikon Announces D5200 DSLR with 24MP DX Sensor & 39-point AF System

Nikon has just announced the D5200 DSLR camera, the successor to the D5100 which was released in early 2011. Like the D5100, the D5200 is Nikon's higher-powered entry-level model and sits above the basic D3200. Nikon says that the new camera is "geared towards photography students and enthusiasts, and users looking to upgrade to a DSLR camera."

A Higher-resolution, Faster-shooting Upgrade

Key new features include a 24.1MP DX-format CMOS sensor, which is similar to the one first seen in the D3200 but with a few changes. Base ISO sensitivity is ISO 100 to 6400, but can be expanded to the equivalent of ISO 25,600. The Expeed 3 image-processing engine is based on the one built into Nikon's high-end FX D4, D800/800E and D600 cameras.

The D5200 shoots at a maximum of 5 frames per second, but that's in AF-Single mode, not the more useful AF-Continuous mode usually used for shooting action. The D5200 comes with 3D focus tracking, which locks on to a subject and automatically shifts the focus point to follow and anticipate subject movement. 

For the first time in a camera of this class, Nikon has packed the D5200 with a comprehensive 39 focus points, using the Multi-CAM4800DX sensor found in the higher-end D7000. During our initial hands-on with the D5200, we found the 39 focus points to be evenly spread out over the viewfinder, providing an even wider coverage than the tight AF points of the D600.

The D5200's layout is virtually identical to the D5100, except for the additional Drive mode button beside the LV lever.

The D5200 comes in traditional matte black, as well as glossy red and bronze (which looked more like shiny gray to us).

A New Learning Screen

The D5200 introduces a completely new graphical user interface to Nikon's DSLR cameras. It displays three large circles which represent the three legs of the exposure triangle; shutter speed, aperture setting and ISO sensitivity. Nikon says that the new screen is designed to help new DSLR users grasp the basics of exposure when shooting manually, by being able to see how changing one setting affects the others.

The D5200's (right) Info screen has been completely redesigned from the D5100's (left).

The new user interface is designed to help users grasp the basics of exposure. The three large circles animate when settings change, the most obvious of which is the aperture circle which will widen and narrow when the aperture changes.

Coming in December

Other notable features about the new D5200 include a vari-angle 3", 921k-dot LCD screen (not touch-sensitive). It can record Full-HD movies at 60i, 50i, 24p, 25p and 30p. The camera comes with a built-in stereo microphone, as well as an external microphone jack and the ability to output uncompressed video footage via HDMI. 

The D5200 weighs 555g and has a battery life of 500 shots, which is a unfortunate 24% decrease from the D5100's battery life of 660 shots. The D5200 is expected to launch in December, with prices yet to be confirmed. The D5100 with 18-55mm kit lens was released at S$1199, so expect to see the D5200 come in at the same price or even slightly more.