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If you’re shopping for the best Nikon digital camera, your first step is to decide on the best digital camera for your needs. Nikon is an industry leader in quality cameras. Their models range from professional DSLR and mirrorless models designed for pro and novice photographers to simple, compact point-and-shoot cameras ideal for amateurs and aspiring photographers alike.
Designed with longevity in mind, Nikon is one of the world’s best photography and imaging companies. The global corporation has proven that they can hold their own against competitors, like Sony cameras and Canon cameras, ensuring that their products are relevant to the times. This includes offering companion software and apps for a connected digital photography solution.
Keep reading our buying guide to learn more about Nikon digital cameras, how they rate against competitor brands, and what you need to know when shopping for a model that’s right for you.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This camera has smart features, making it easy to transfer videos and photos to other devices. It boasts an optical zoom of up to 40X, ideal for taking photos and capturing videos from considerable distances.
Unlike the Nikon D850, the Nikon COOLPIX B500 digital camera has an effective 16MP sensor that captures beautiful photographs. It boasts a suite of smart features, including Wi-Fi connectivity. This camera has a 40X optical zoom lens to capture fine details even from afar. Its brilliant red color palette and sleek design offer a stylish appearance. With a sleek, compact design, this device is suitable for travel. However, this camera requires a regular supply of alkaline batteries to function.
This Nikon COOLPIX B500 camera has a large 3-inch 921,000-dot LCD that tilts, simplifying previewing and monitoring recording sessions. Featuring four-axis hybrid vibration reduction (VR), this camera smooths out vibrations when shooting while moving. It also has decent video recording abilities, capturing at resolutions of up to 1080p. This camera is compatible with Nikon’s SnapBridge app, so users can control the camera and change settings via a compatible mobile device.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: It has a DSLR-like design and works with advanced lenses, which will appeal to professional photographers. The camera records detailed ultra-HD videos, making it a favorite of videographers.
The Nikon D7500 DX-Format digital camera is a point-and-shoot model with an SLR body. With a powerful 20.9-megapixel sensor that captures extremely detailed photos, this camera will appeal to professional photographers. The camera also has impressive video capturing abilities, recording videos of up to 4K. With a tilting 3.2-inch touchscreen LCD, this camera supports easy customization. However, this camera is bulky and difficult to tote around for casual users. Knowing that, check out our finest medium format digital cameras for more options.
This Nikon D7500 DX-Format digital camera has a rugged design that stands up well to regular use and travel. It’s compatible with a variety of lenses, including telephoto, portrait, and dual-zoom lenses. Featuring Wi-Fi connectivity, this camera easily transfers photos to computers and other devices. It also has Bluetooth tech and works with the Nikon SnapBridge app for managing settings and media. It comes with a powerful rechargeable battery that supports up to 950 shots on a single charge.
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Award: BEST FOR TRAVELLERS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This camera has a lightweight design, making it easy to carry on excursions. It produces stunning photos, which makes it a good choice for amateurs and professionals who don’t want to lug a bulky, expensive DSLR camera.
The Nikon COOLPIX L340 digital camera features a 20.2-megapixel CCD sensor, which captures incredibly vibrant photographs. It also records HD videos of up to 720p. This digital camera has a 28X optical zoom telephoto lens that captures items from a distance. Vibration reduction (VR) tech counters the effects of camera shake, enabling users to capture high-quality photos when moving. However, this model lacks a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, relying instead on alkaline batteries.
This Nikon COOLPIX L340 digital camera allows for easy customization. Its 3.0 LCD provides great previews and enables adjusting settings easily. This camera is relatively compact and lightweight, so it suits people who travel regularly. A sturdy chassis provides durability. This camera has an anti-slip surface for safe carrying. It has 16 scenes and a Scene Auto Selector for taking the guesswork out of the scene setting. Vibration Reduction enhances stability during shooting.
Award: BEST FOR NATURE PHOTOGRAPHERS
WHY WE LIKE IT: The camera comes with a monster 125X optical zoom lens that easily focuses on everything from stars to landscapes. This camera has advanced time-lapse features that are especially suited to wildlife photography.
The Nikon COOLPIX P1000 digital camera has several advanced functions that will appeal to professionals. This camera comes with a monster 3,000mm lens that provides an incredible optical zoom of up to 125X. It captures colorful photos of 16 megapixels. Videographers will love the powerful features of this camera, which records 4K UHD video. This camera is equipped with a dual-detect image stabilization system that evens out camera shake. However, the camera is a bit heavy to carry around.
This Nikon COOLPIX P1000 digital camera has a microphone jack for enhancing audio recording. We love the 3.2-inch 921,000-dot Vari-angle LCD on this camera for its realistic previews. It comes with a remote control for easy customization. This camera has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and works with Nikon’s SnapBridge app for syncing with iOS and Android mobile devices. It has excellent time-lapse shooting functions, making it a good choice for wildlife and astrophotography. Connectivity options include an HDMI output port and a sound output port.
Award: BEST FOR AMATEUR PHOTOGRAPHERS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This camera comes with a great NIKKOR lens that will suit users who want to photograph items from afar. The camera is lightweight and also has decent video recording abilities
The Nikon COOLPIX B600 digital camera uses a 16-megapixel low-light CMOS sensor to capture stunning photos. Featuring an incredible lens with up to 60X optical zoom, this camera supports taking photos from a distance. It has Vibration Reduction (VR) technology for countering the effects of camera shake. This camera records Full-HD videos. It has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for wireless connectivity. However, using Bluetooth on this device is not straightforward and requires the Nikon SnapBridge app.
This Nikon COOLPIX B600 digital camera has 19 different modes and a scene auto selector for simple customization. It’s lightweight and is ideal for carrying around during trips. With a maximum ISO of 6400, it easily enhances grainy images. The camera comes with several useful accessories for an all-around solution. Its backside illumination CMOS sensor and EXPEED image processor deliver amazing photos. It comes with 36 different effects to help photographers spice up their media.
Award: BEST FOR PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHERS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This camera has a powerful 24MP sensor that captures detailed photos and videos. The manual controls and seamless wireless connectivity options make it a favorite of professional photographers
The Nikon Z 5 digital camera is a full-frame mirrorless model with the appearance of a DSLR. This camera has an excellent 24.3-megapixel CMOS sensor that captures photos with astounding details. We love the incredible video recording abilities of this device, which records at resolutions of up to 4K. This camera works with a wide variety of professional-grade lenses, including the NIKKOR Z 24-50mm f/4-6.3 Zoom lens for great interior photos and portraits.
Via Wi-Fi, this Nikon Z 5 digital camera connects to devices wirelessly and supports remote control and browsing. VR image stabilization counters the effects of vibrations and camera shake. Featuring a lithium-ion battery, this camera is easy to maintain. It has intuitive manual controls that support reliable operation. With dual SD card slots, this camera offers virtually unlimited photo and video capturing capacity. The camera has built-in Bluetooth connectivity for pairing with phones via the Nikon SnapBridge app.
Nikon is a photography and imaging company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, that launched in 1917. Initially, the firm focused almost exclusively on creating optical lenses and imaging products for the domestic Japanese market. However, after World War II, Nikon expanded their product offerings to include consumer photography.
Today, along with a healthy consumer product profile, Nikon also supplies commercial imaging solutions to several sectors, including healthcare, research, and technology, to name a few. The brand is considered a leader in the optical and digital imaging solutions field, providing excellent image quality.
As a consumer shopping for a digital camera, you can’t go wrong with Nikon. It’s an excellent choice for professionals and lay users. As mentioned in the introduction, Nikon’s digital camera offerings fall into three categories: DSLR (digital single-lens reflex), mirrorless, and compact or point-and-shoot. Alternatively, if you’re not ready to invest in a Nikon camera, consider some of the best Panasonic digital cameras.
(Pro1) Nikon is in the Top Three for Camera Brands: Typically, you’ll find that Nikon’s most direct competitor is one of two established camera brands, Canon and Sony. All brands are considered the top three options for DSLR and mirrorless cameras. Especially for professional photographers and prosumers, Nikon offers competitive solutions for both DSLR and mirrorless cameras. In recent years, the company has continued to expand its mirrorless product offerings, creating more competition for Canon and Sony. Speaking of Canon, some other models to consider are the Canon EOS Rebel T6i and the Canon EOS RP.
(Con1) Limited Compact Camera Options: Like many digital camera brands, Nikon has reduced their focus on compact solutions as the rise of better smartphone cameras has made this specific subcategory virtually redundant.
(Pro 2) Wider Accessory Compatibility: Nikon is a fan favorite with buyers across all experience levels because of its broad compatibility with third-party photography accessories. This includes options like camera mounts and additional lenses.
(Con 2) Less Autofocus and Lens Interoperability: Unlike Canon, only the Nikon-AF lenses support autofocus, meaning you need to rely on manual controls with other models. Also, the Nikon entry-level DSLR camera lacks an autofocus function. In contrast, Canon supports more interchangeable lenses with more support for third-party options, which can’t be said for Nikon DSLRs.
(Pro 3) Lightweight Camera Solutions: Nikon offers lighter mirrorless and DSLR cameras, making them ideal for people that want a device that’s more travel-friendly, or are intimidated by the bulk usually associated with these cameras.
(Con 3) Few Models With Image Stability and Articulated Screens: In general, most Nikon models lack built-in image stabilization, increasing the potential for image blur when taking photos without a tripod. The same goes for fully articulated LCD screens. Instead, these features are often only found on the brand’s more expensive models.
One crucial tip to keep in mind is that photographers tend to have strong brand loyalty even when purchasing additional cameras. Especially if you invest in accessories, switching to a new brand can mean that you now have a collection of accessories that are no longer compatible. More importantly, everyone’s comfort level and experience with a product or brand will be different.
With that being said, Nikon is a perfect solution for consumers — both novices and professionals — seeking a quality camera that provides excellent resolution, plenty of functionality, and is designed to last. More importantly, you’ll like that Nikon cameras support a wider range of accessories, including from third-party brands.
Cameras are a unique product category where longevity depends on a figure known as shutter actuations. While the physical casing can last indefinitely, your camera does have a finite lifespan during which the shutter can be activated. The shutter actuation figure can vary widely depending on the type of camera you select.
Depending on the camera, your shutter actuation may be as low as 50,000 to 350,000 or more. However, some cameras may survive beyond this figure. Also, note that you might not get the quoted lifespan offered on a brand new camera if you purchase a Nikon digital camera secondhand.
For Nikon cameras, the shutter actuation range varies from 100,000 to 500,000, specifically for their DSLR models. While shutter count does matter somewhat with mirrorless cameras, it depends on how frequently you use the mechanical shutter over the digital shutter. If you use your mechanical shutter often, shutter count will be an important factor.
You can check your camera’s current shutter count by looking for the EFIX data on individual images. Alternatively, if deciphering the EFIX data is difficult, you can also use photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop or the Nikon Shutter Count website to upload an image and check your shutter count.
Your warranty with a Nikon digital camera will depend on whether you purchase a new or refurbished camera. New Nikon cameras purchased directly through Nikon or an authorized retailer come with a one-year warranty. Refurbished cameras purchased through authorized sales channels have a limited 90-day warranty. During the warranty period, if your camera is damaged by no fault of your own, Nikon will repair or replace the device.