Top 5 Best Nikon Cameras for Beginners in 2024 (Intuitive & Affordable)

Nikon has been a top player for cameras for ages. If you’re looking for the best Nikon cameras for beginners, you’ve come to the right place. I’m excited to show you my top 5 picks!

Overview

CameraBest ForPriceRating
Nikon Z 50Best Overall~$850★★★★★
Nikon D3400Best Budget Option~$300★★★★☆
Nikon Z 5Cheapest Full-Frame~$1,000★★★★
Nikon Z 6IIBest Quality Camera~$1,500★★★★★
Nikon D7200Best DSLR Option~$1,000★★★

Best Nikon Cameras for Beginners

1. Nikon Z 50

Best Overall Choice
Nikon Z 50
$856.95

Affordable Price

Great Image Quality

Crisp 4K Recording

Intuitive Design for Beginners

Lightweight Build


❌ Autofocus could be better

❌ No in-body stabilization

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03/03/2024 02:45 am GMT

The Nikon Z 50 is a perfect fit for anybody who wants to dip into photography. The camera is incredibly easy to use and has a really nice compact size. It’s small enough to fit in your pocket, making it easy to take with you wherever you go.

On a technical side, the Z 50’s 20.9 MP sensor and high ISO of 51200 produce clean, noise-free images in low light, making it perfect for taking stunning pictures and videos even in challenging lighting conditions.

Eye detection is another feature I love, and 4K video recording tops it off. It’s a fantastic camera overall that is perfect for beginners, and I’m sure you will have great fun with it!

Most Important Specs:

★★★★☆
Sensor
APS-C
22 Megapixels
5568 x 3712
★★★★★
ISO
Auto, 100-51200 (expands to 204,800)
★★★★☆
Shutterspeed
1/4000 sec
★★★★★
Autofocus
Contrast & Phase Detection
209 Focus Points
★★★★★
Measurements
450 g (0.99 lb / 15.87 oz)
127 x 94 x 60 mm (5 x 3.7 x 2.36″)

Overall Rating: ★★★★★


2. Nikon D3400

Best Budget Option
Nikon D3400
$304.95

Very good value at just $400 with a kit lens

Impressive Image Quality for its class

Autofocus is surprisingly fast


❌ Grip material is not high-quality

❌ Few options for advanced users

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03/03/2024 04:50 am GMT

If you’re a beginner looking for a reliable and affordable camera, the Nikon D3400 is a great option. It offers a solid feature set and delivers excellent image quality for a really affordable price.

The Nikon D3400 is a great camera for beginners who want to learn photography. The quality is one of the best among other cameras with a DX crop sensor, and even the autofocus works really well despite only having 11 autofocus points.

Of course, I’m missing some advanced features and options, but that’s probably on me for being spoiled by high-end cameras! For $300 you’ll get one of the best Nikon cameras for beginners out there.

Most Important Specs:

★★★★★
Sensor
APS-C
24 Megapixels
6000 x 4000
★★★★☆
ISO
Auto, 100-25600
★★★★☆
Shutterspeed
1/4000 sec
★★★☆☆
Autofocus
Contrast & Phase Detection
11 Focus Points
★★★★★
Measurements
445 g (0.98 lb / 15.70 oz)
124 x 98 x 76 mm (4.88 x 3.86 x 2.99″)

Overall Rating: ★★★★


3. Nikon Z 5

Cheapest Full-Frame
Nikon Z 5
$996.95

Very good autofocus

Full-Frame sensor for exceptional image quality

Perfect for Low-Light Conditions


❌ No lens hood provided

❌ Slow Frame Rate

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03/03/2024 05:47 am GMT

If you definitely want a full-frame camera but still want a cheap and affordable option, the Z 5 is your way to go.

The Z 5 is Nikon’s most compact and lightweight full-frame interchangeable lens Z series camera, which is great if you want to carry your camera around a lot. Also, it is the cheapest full-frame camera Nikon offers!

The autofocus is absolutely great for most beginners, as it snaps onto the subjects fast and produces clear and crisp photos. And – of course – due to the full-frame sensor, you will have an exceptional low-light performance and image quality, making it one of the best Nikon cameras for beginners.

Most Important Specs:

★★★★★
Sensor
Full-Frame
24 Megapixels
6016 x 4016
★★★★★
ISO
Auto, 100-51200 (expands to 50-102400)
★★★★★
Shutterspeed
1/8000 sec
★★★★★
Autofocus
Contrast & Phase Detection
273 Focus Points
★★★★★
Measurements
675 g (1.49 lb / 23.81 oz)
134 x 101 x 70 mm (5.28 x 3.98 x 2.76″)

Overall Rating: ★★★★★


4. Nikon Z 6II

Best Quality Camera
Nikon Z 6II
$1,596.95

Good Price for a Full-Frame Camera

Robust Build, Comfortable Use

Solid Specs for Cheap Price


❌ Steep Learning Curves for Beginners

❌ Lack in-body Flash

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03/03/2024 01:37 pm GMT

If you have a few more bucks to spare, the Nikon Z 6II should be your choice. With its full-frame mirrorless hybrid design, this camera excels in speed, image quality, and video performance.

The camera has outstanding good specs for its price, by far the best on this list:

  • The low-light performance is top-notch, with great ISO and a full-frame sensor.
  • The Shutterspeed is solid and adequate for any beginner.
  • And with 273 Autofocus points you’ll never get a blurred shot.

So, if you want a top-of-the-line camera that can do it all, the Nikon Z 6II is definitely worth considering.

Most Important Specs:

★★★★★
Sensor
Full-Frame
25 Megapixels
6048 x 4024
★★★★★
ISO
Auto, 100-51200 (expands to 50-204800)
★★★★☆
Shutterspeed
1/8000 sec
★★★★★
Autofocus
Contrast & Phase Detection
273 Focus Points
★★★★☆
Measurements
705 g (1.55 lb / 24.87 oz)
134 x 101 x 70 mm (5.28 x 3.98 x 2.76″)

Overall Rating: ★★★★★


5. Nikon D7200

Best DSLR Option
Nikon D7200
$994.95

✅ Great for Mastering the Basics

Weather-sealed Body

✅ Amazing Low-Light performance


❌ No in-body stabilization

❌ Camera is a bit heavier

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03/03/2024 06:39 am GMT

If you want a DSLR, the D7200 is a great option for you! Even though mirrorless cameras have become more and more popular, DSLRs are still great to use and will teach you all you need for photography.

DSLRs are a bit heavier than most mirrorless cameras, but the D7200 is still quite ergonomic and nice to use. The strongest point is the low-light performance, with up to 102,400 ISO points. With these, you can shoot in any condition!

The body is also weather-sealed, which is nice for any adventurers out there!

Most Important Specs:

★★★★☆
Sensor
APS-C
24 Megapixels
6000 x 4000
★★★★★
ISO
Auto, 100-25600, expands to 102400
(black and white only)
★★★★★
Shutterspeed
1/8000 sec
★★★★☆
Autofocus
Contrast & Phase Detection
51 Focus Points
★★★★☆
Measurements
765 g (1.69 lb / 26.98 oz)
136 x 107 x 76 mm (5.35 x 4.21 x 2.99″)

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆


the best nikon cameras for beginners on a wooden table with lenses and objectives, nikon z7 II, full frame nikon dslr mirrorless camera
IG: dreamcameragears

Buying Guide

As a beginner, choosing the right camera can be a daunting task. There are many features to consider, but don’t worry, I’m here to help you out! Here are some key features that you should look for when choosing the best Nikon cameras for beginners:

Sensor Size

The size of the camera’s sensor is an important factor to consider. The larger the sensor, the more light it can capture, resulting in higher image quality. As a beginner, you may not need the largest sensor available, but it’s important to choose a camera with a decent-sized sensor.

I would recommend an APS-C or even a full-frame (biggest) sensor to beginners.

ISO

ISO is a measure of the camera’s sensitivity to light. A higher ISO allows you to take photos in low-light situations without having to use a flash. However, a high ISO can also result in more noise in your photos. Look for a camera with a good ISO range, but don’t worry too much about the highest ISO available. Anything above 15000 ISO points is good.

Shutter Speed

Shutter speed determines how long the camera’s shutter stays open when taking a photo. A faster shutter speed is ideal for capturing fast-moving subjects, while a slower shutter speed can create motion blur. Look for a camera with a range of shutter speeds to give you more creative control. I would go with at least 1/4000 sec.

Video

If you plan on taking videos with your camera, look for one that can shoot in at least 1080p resolution. Some cameras even offer 4K video, but keep in mind that this will require more storage space and a faster computer to edit.

Measurements

The size and weight of the camera can also be important factors to consider, especially if you plan on carrying it around with you. Look for a camera that feels comfortable in your hands and is easy to use. The best Nikon cameras for beginners I presented all weigh around 500 – 700 grams, which fits nicely in any hand.

Autofocus

Also, consider the camera’s autofocus system. Look for a camera with a fast and accurate autofocus system to help you capture sharp photos. Some cameras even offer features like eye detection autofocus, which can be especially helpful for portrait photography.

Also, focus points can give you a great idea of how well the autofocus might perform.

Price

Last but not least – the price. You should expect to spend about $500 for your first camera. If you go much cheaper, the quality you’ll receive will suffer. And obviously, the more you spend, the better your camera will be!

My Opinion on the Best Nikon Camera for Beginners

If you want a Nikon as your first camera, that’s a great choice! I definitely recommend the I were you, I would definitely go with the Nikon Z 50, as it is a great overall camera to start off with and is definitely affordable for most beginners. It will teach you everything you need and give you a great head-start in photography!

If you’re on a budget, instead, have a look at the Nikon D3400. With just $300, it is incredibly affordable and still produces beautiful photos that will make any beginner photographer happy.

Now you’ve got everything you need to decide on the best Nikon cameras for beginners! If you need some other recommendations or want to read some photography guides, have a look at these:

Also, have a look at our Socials to stay up-to-date with the latest photography trends!

Do you have other recommendations for the best Nikon cameras for beginners? Let us know in the comments down below!

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Luis Kleinheinz

Hey, I'm Luis Kleinheinz!

I am writing our articles here on lens-mastery.com. As a seasoned photographer myself, I love spreading my passion for this great hobby and teaching others about the Dos and Don'ts of Photography.

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