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Nikon D3500 vs D5500 Comparison

Storage & Battery

Nikon D3500

Nikon D3500 product image

Nikon D5500

Nikon D5500 camera image
Nikon D3500
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.
August 30, 2018
January 06, 2015
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5500 both score 61/100, making them evenly matched in our evaluation. These DSLR cameras share some common specifications, such as their camera type, size (124 x 97 x 70mm), and launch prices of $499.95 for the D3500 and $900 for the D5500.

However, the D5500 has a slight edge in terms of weight, coming in at 420g (0.93lbs), while the D3500 weighs 615g (1.36lbs). This makes the D5500 more portable and easier to carry around. On the other hand, the D3500 has the advantage of being a more recent release, as it was announced in 2018 compared to the D5500’s 2015 announcement date. This could mean that the D3500 benefits from more recent technological advancements.

Taking these factors into account, both cameras have their unique strengths, with the D5500 being lighter and the D3500 being a more recent model. Ultimately, the choice between the two depends on the individual’s preferences and priorities.

Nikon D3500 vs D5500 Overview and Optics

The Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5500 have identical scores of 65/100 for their optics. They share several common specifications, including a 24-megapixel count, a shooting speed of 5, a CMOS sensor type, an Expeed 4 processor, an APS-C sensor size, a Nikon F lens mount, and no image stabilization.

The Nikon D5500 has a slight edge in megapixels, with 24.2 compared to the D3500’s 24. This difference provides a marginal improvement in image resolution. However, the D3500 has a higher DXOMARK score for its sensor at 87, compared to the D5500’s 84. This means the D3500’s sensor performs better in terms of color depth, dynamic range, and low-light performance.

The Nikon D3500 is better in terms of sensor performance, which results in better image quality. Despite having a slightly lower megapixel count, the D3500’s higher DXOMARK score compensates for this difference, offering improved image quality overall.

On the other hand, the Nikon D5500’s slightly higher megapixel count can provide marginally better image resolution. However, this advantage is minimal and may not be noticeable in most shooting situations.

In comparing the optics of the Nikon D3500 and Nikon D5500, both cameras share many similarities, and their overall scores are identical. The D3500 has a better sensor performance, while the D5500 has a minor advantage in image resolution. Ultimately, the choice between these two cameras will depend on the individual photographer’s preferences and needs.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
24 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.
6000 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.
15.6 x 23.5 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.
5 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
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 4
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 D3500 vs D5500 Video Performance

The Nikon D5500 emerges as the winner in the video capabilities comparison, with a score of 70 out of 100, while the Nikon D3500 scores 56 out of 100. Both cameras share some common specifications, such as Full HD max video resolution, max video dimensions of 1920×1080, and a max video frame rate of 60fps.

The D5500 outperforms the D3500 in video capabilities primarily due to its built-in time-lapse functionality. This feature allows users to create stunning time-lapse videos without needing additional software or equipment, making it a more versatile option for those interested in capturing the passage of time in their videos.

On the other hand, the D3500 does not offer any distinct advantages in video capabilities compared to the D5500. Its lower video score reflects the lack of time-lapse functionality, which may be a crucial feature for some users.

With these points in mind, it is clear that the Nikon D5500 offers superior video capabilities compared to the Nikon D3500. The built-in time-lapse functionality sets it apart and provides users with a valuable tool for creative video projects. While the D3500 may be sufficient for basic video needs, the D5500 stands out as the better choice for those looking to take their videography to the next level.

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√ó1080 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.
60 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 D3500 vs D5500 Features and Benefits

The Nikon D5500 emerges as the winner in the features category, scoring 59/100, while the Nikon D3500 scores 54/100. Both cameras share some common specifications, such as a 3-inch screen size, no GPS functionality, and the presence of Bluetooth connectivity.

The D5500 outperforms the D3500 in several aspects. It boasts a larger 3.2-inch screen size and a higher screen resolution of 1,037,000 dots compared to the D3500’s 921,600 dots, providing a clearer and more detailed display. Additionally, the D5500 features a touchscreen, which makes navigating menus and adjusting settings more convenient. This camera also has a flip screen, allowing for more flexible shooting angles and better composition. The presence of Wi-Fi connectivity in the D5500 enables easy sharing and transfer of images, a feature absent in the D3500.

On the other hand, the D3500 has a slight advantage over the D5500 in terms of Bluetooth connectivity. While both cameras have this feature, the D5500 lacks it, which may be a drawback for some users who prefer to use Bluetooth for transferring images or remote shooting.

Taking these points into consideration, it is evident that the Nikon D5500 offers better features than the D3500. Its larger screen size, higher screen resolution, touchscreen, flip screen, and Wi-Fi connectivity make it a more versatile and user-friendly camera. However, the D3500’s Bluetooth connectivity may still appeal to some users. In the end, choosing between these cameras will depend on individual preferences and the specific features required for one’s photography needs.

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.
921,600 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 D3500 vs D5500 Storage and Battery

The Nikon D3500 outperforms the Nikon D5500 in storage and battery with a score of 48/100 compared to the D5500’s 35/100. Both cameras share common specifications, such as having a single memory card slot and accepting SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards. Neither camera offers USB charging.

The D3500’s superior battery life sets it apart, providing 1550 shots on a single charge using the EN-EL14a battery. In contrast, the D5500’s battery life reaches only 820 shots using the EN-EL14 battery. This significant difference in battery life makes the D3500 more reliable for extended shooting sessions.

Although the D5500’s storage and battery features are not as impressive as the D3500’s, it still offers decent performance for casual photographers. However, for those who prioritize longer battery life and better storage capabilities, the Nikon D3500 proves to be the better choice.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
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.
1,550 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
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.'
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'

Alternatives to the Nikon D3500 and D5500

Nikon D3500 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 D3500 or the Nikon D5500:

User Scores
B&H photo video
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