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Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Comparison

Storage & Battery

Nikon D3200

Nikon D3200 camera image

Nikon D5500

Nikon D5500 camera image
Nikon D3200
Nikon D5500
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
April 19, 2012
January 06, 2015
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Nikon D5500 takes the lead with a score of 61/100, compared to the Nikon D3200‘s 54/100. Both cameras are DSLR models and were released in 2012 and 2015, respectively. They share common specifications, such as the camera type and similar size dimensions.

The winning Nikon D5500 stands out with its lighter weight of 420g, making it more portable than the D3200, which weighs 505g. However, the Nikon D3200 has an advantage in terms of price, as it launched at $699, while the D5500 had a launch price of $900.

Considering the score difference and the specifications, the Nikon D5500 is the better option between the two, offering improved portability with its lighter weight. But for those on a budget, the Nikon D3200 is still a viable choice with its more affordable price.

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Overview and Optics

The Nikon D5500 wins in the optics comparison with a score of 65/100, while the Nikon D3200 scores slightly lower at 63/100. Both cameras share several specifications, such as a 24.2-megapixel count, CMOS sensor type, APS-C sensor size, Nikon F DX lens mount, and lack of image stabilization.

The D5500’s superiority in optics can be attributed to its faster shooting speed of 5 frames per second and a more advanced Expeed 4 processor. Additionally, the D5500 boasts a higher DXOMARK score for the sensor at 84, compared to the D3200’s score of 81. These factors contribute to the D5500’s ability to capture better quality images, especially in fast-paced situations.

The D3200, on the other hand, has a slower shooting speed of 4 frames per second and an older Expeed 3 processor. Despite these disadvantages, the D3200 still performs well in terms of optics, as evidenced by its close score to the D5500. The difference in performance between the two cameras may not be significant enough to impact the average user’s photography experience.

Taking these factors into account, the Nikon D5500 offers a slight edge in optics due to its faster shooting speed, better processor, and higher DXOMARK score for the sensor. However, the Nikon D3200 remains a strong contender in the optics department, with only a minor difference in performance. Ultimately, both cameras provide users with high-quality optics, making either option a suitable choice depending on individual preferences and budget.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24.2 MP
24.2 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
6016 x 4000 px
6000 x 4000 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
15.4 x 23.2 mm
15.6 x 23.5 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
4 fps
5 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Nikon F DX
Nikon F DX
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
Expeed 3
Expeed 4
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
30 s
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 4000 s
1/ 4000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.
Optical (pentamirror)
Optical (pentamirror)

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Video Performance

The Nikon D5500 outperforms the Nikon D3200 in terms of video capabilities, with a video score of 70 out of 100 compared to the D3200’s 43. Both cameras share some common features, such as Full HD video resolution and maximum video dimensions of 1920 x 1080. However, the D5500 boasts several advantages over the D3200, making it the superior choice for video recording.

One significant advantage of the D5500 is its higher maximum video frame rate of 60fps, compared to the D3200’s 30fps. This allows the D5500 to capture smoother and more detailed footage, particularly in fast-moving scenes or when shooting sports and action events. Additionally, the D5500 includes built-in time-lapse functionality, enabling users to create stunning time-lapse videos without the need for external accessories or software.

The D3200, on the other hand, does not offer any specific advantages over the D5500 in terms of video capabilities. Its lower video score reflects the lack of features and performance compared to the D5500. However, it is worth noting that the D3200 may still be suitable for casual video recording or for those who do not require advanced video features.

Taking these factors into consideration, it is clear that the Nikon D5500 is the better choice for those seeking superior video performance and features. The higher frame rate and time-lapse functionality make it a more versatile and capable camera for video recording. While the Nikon D3200 may be adequate for casual use, the D5500 offers a more comprehensive and advanced set of video capabilities.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Max Video Resolution
The best resolution this camera can capture video in. Modern cameras can capture up to 8K video.
Full HD
Full HD
Max Video Dimensions
Video resolution measured by the greatest number of pixels possible in each frame, width by height. A higher resolution means more detail or clarity in your video.
1920 x 1080 px
1920 x 1080 px
Max Video Frame Rate
How many frames per second your video will capture. Most cameras have options for multiple frame rates, depending on the resolution you shoot in. For a general video, 24p or 30p is the standard, but more serious filmmakers may need a higher frame rate for creative effect.
30 p
60 p
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.
Video File Format
Different cameras can record in various video file formats. The File format you record in can impact how you edit and use the files.

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Features and Benefits

The Nikon D5500 outperforms the Nikon D3200 with a feature score of 59/100, a difference of 18 points compared to the D3200’s score of 41/100. Both cameras share some specifications, such as a 3-inch screen size, no GPS, and no Bluetooth. However, the D5500 surpasses the D3200 in several aspects, making it the superior choice for many photographers.

The winning camera, the Nikon D5500, boasts a larger 3.2-inch screen with a higher resolution of 1,037,000 dots, compared to the D3200’s 921,000 dots. This results in sharper and clearer image previews. Additionally, the D5500 features a touchscreen, allowing users to navigate menus and settings with ease. The camera also has a flip screen, providing flexibility for shooting at various angles. Furthermore, the D5500 comes with built-in WiFi, enabling quick and convenient image transfers to compatible devices.

On the other hand, the Nikon D3200 does not offer any advantages over the D5500 in terms of features. It lacks a touchscreen, flip screen, and WiFi, which limits its usability and convenience compared to its counterpart.

Therefore, the Nikon D5500 is the better option among the two cameras due to its superior features, such as the higher resolution screen, touchscreen, flip screen, and WiFi capabilities. These enhancements provide better image quality, convenience, and versatility for photographers. The Nikon D3200, while still a competent camera, falls short in these areas, making the D5500 a more attractive choice for those looking to upgrade or invest in a new camera.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
921,000 dots
1,037,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Storage and Battery

The Nikon D5500 wins in the storage and battery category with a score of 35/100, while the Nikon D3200 scores 27/100. Both cameras have a single memory card slot, accepting SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards, and neither offers USB charging. They also share the same battery type, the EN-EL14.

The D5500 has a superior battery life, providing 820 shots per charge compared to the D3200’s 540 shots. This advantage allows for extended use without needing to replace or recharge the battery as frequently.

The D3200 does not have any significant advantages over the D5500 in terms of storage and battery. Its lower score reflects its shorter battery life.

Considering these points, the Nikon D5500 proves to be the better choice for photographers seeking longer battery life and similar storage capabilities. The Nikon D3200, while still a solid option, falls short in comparison due to its shorter battery life.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
SD / SDHC / SDXC (UHS-I compatible)
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
540 shots
820 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
24.1 bits
24.1 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
13.2 EVs
14 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 – Our Verdict

Nikon D3200 vs D5500 Comparison image.

Are you still undecided about which camera is right for you? Have a look at these popular comparisons that feature the Nikon D3200 or the Nikon D5500:

User Scores
B&H photo video
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