Nikon D3500

Nikon D3500

Nikon D3500
Announced: 29 Aug 2018
Sensor Resolution: 24Mp
Sensor Type: APS-C CMOS
ISO: 100-25600
Weight: 365g
Physical Dimensions: 124 x 97 x 70 mm
Viewfinder: Optical (pentamirror)
Screen Type: 3" Fixed
Video Resolutions: 1920 x 1080
57
Overall Score
48
Image Quality
41
Speed Performance
62
Versatility
85
Comfort
Portrait

51

Portrait
Landscape

48

Landscape
Sport

53

Sport
Street

68

Street
Everyday

69

Everyday

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prospros

  • This camera autofocus is able to follow moving subjects
  • The LCD display is a convenient and almost indispensable feature
  • It has fast shutter speed, ideal for action photos
  • Nikon D3500 battery has 1550.0 shoots autonomy. This will allow long photo sessions without having the need to recharge it.
  • Thanks to the wireless connection, Nikon D3500 allows immediate picture sharing

conscons

  • Warning - Nikon D3500 is not a tropicalized camera. If you use it in adverse conditions, you could ruin it.

Nikon D3500: full review

The new Nikon D3500 is a classic DSLR “Entry Level” camera, thought for those who start their adventure in the reflex cameras world.

The Entry Level target is also referred to the budget, since the photographers who choose it are going to spend no more than 5-600€, lens included.

Nikon D3500 is in the high range of these parameters, in terms of both technology and price.

Launched in September 2018, D3500 stands out for lighter weight, easier to handle camera body and longer battery life (almost 1/3 more) than Nikon D3400.

In this review we’ll start right from its construction characteristics.

Construction characteristics of Nikon D3500

Nikon D3500 has a solid single-piece structure that gives you a quite pleasant feeling.

When I had Nikon D3500 in my hands, I felt a decent camera in terms of structure.

Probably, if I had considered only this first approach, I would have valued it more than what it’s really worth.

The ergonomics is excellent, with well-positioned, easy to reach buttons and rings of adequate size.

In particular, the grip is surprisingly deep for the small size of the camera body.

Nikon has invested a lot in the production of light materials and Nikon D3500 does not go beyond such philosophy, born especially to contain the success of mirrorless cameras.

Compared to D3400, the new Nikon D3500 weighs 30 grams less. We’re around 365 grams, battery and memory card excluded.

Also the size of the new Nikon D3500 are slightly less bulky than D3400: 124 x 97 x 69.5 mm (versus 124 x 98 x 76 mm of the previous Nikon model).

It goes without saying, then, that such size suggests immediately when to use this entry level camera, perfect for any kind of travel or street photography.

Beware, though: like every camera in this price range, Nikon D3500 is not tropicalized.

This means that – compared to semi-professional models, like Nikon D7500 – it is not resistant to the most extreme weather conditions, nor to dust or rain.

Nikon D3500: picture quality and shot experience

The 24 megapixels sensor and the excellent Expeed 4 processor are the dynamic duo able to give high-quality images, staying in the range of APS-C cameras.

Image definition is really remarkable, color range is good, low light performance is more than decent thanks to the absence of the low-pass filter on the sensor.

Increasing the ISO, the quality loss is more than acceptable, although the comparison with Full Frame Reflex cameras could not even be contemplated.

As for D3400, the quality of video of Nikon D3500 is not its flagship, being still Full HD, 60 frames per second.

Same goes for the AF system, which has the same limits of the previous model, while remaining very functioning.

It shows some limits, especially in the dynamic scenes: some Canon in the same range can give you more satisfaction in this sense.

In liveview mode, though, I think it’s far better than the previous camera of Nikon 3000 series.

Nikon D3500 is not the best in capturing sports scenes, even if the 5fps burst mode and the buffering do their job perfectly.

So if you take many action photos but you don’t want to spend a fortune, you should head to Nikon D5600.

You’ll spend a couple hundred euros more, but you’ll have a far more performing viewfinder autofocus and a completely adjustable LCD display.

The direct drives, like in all entry level cameras, are few. So if you need to change the setting, you’ll often need to go to the general menu settings.

This will of course slow a little the operating speed of Nikon D3500.

Very useful and smart are the semi-automatic shooting modes and the effects.

The first ones let you learn the correct settings of the camera little by little. The second ones help you nurture the fun side of photography, which is often forgotten.

Nikon D3500: prices and kits

The basic kit of Nikon D3500 is the classic one, with 18-55 VR Nikkor lens. Very affordable, perfect for beginners.

After a while, though, you’ll feel the need to buy lenses with wider focal length, to expand your range of action.

So, you could buy the kit with camera body + 18-105 VR lens right away, spending at least one hundred euros more.

Or, if you can, you could take the most complete combo, including Nikon D3500 + AF-P DX 18–55 VR lens + AF-P DX 70–300 VR lens for a total price of 750 euro approximately. 

My opinion on Nikon D3500

This new Nikon D3500 confirms the excellent quality we’ve seen in every camera of the 3000 series launched by Nikon over the past few years.

I would say that it’s now clear how different, in this market segment, the strategies of Canon and Nikon are.

Canon wants to have the cheapest entry level cameras, keeping the quality acceptable (but quite lower than Nikon’s).

Nikon wants to have the technically better entry level cameras, keeping the price acceptable (but quite higher than Canon’s).

In some way, this makes it easier to make a choice and to express an opinion: if you want the best entry level camera, you’ll have to spend a little more and buy Nikon D3500.

If you want to save money, you should but a Canon entry level camera.

Nikon D3500 and its rivals

Review compare Nikon D3500 with overall score Portrait
Portrait
Landscape
Landscape
Sport
Sport
Street
Street
Everyday
Everyday
Nikon D3500 Nikon
D3500
57 51 48 53 68 69 $699.00
Canon EOS Rebel SL3 Canon
EOS Rebel SL3
60 51 49 55 68 72 $829.00
Canon EOS Rebel T8i Canon
EOS Rebel T8i
60 51 49 58 66 69 $899.99

Nikon D3500: concluding remarks and technical specifications

The Nikon D3500 is a DSLR camera launched on 08/29/2018.

Technically speaking, the Nikon D3500 ranks in the average of its category, scoring 57 overall. The Nikon D3500 weights 365 gr and spans 124 x 97 x 70 mm. This means that it is particularly light and small, indeed one of the most handy options within its category.

Going into details, the Nikon D3500 behaves better than average in its category for:

  • Image Quality - Score 48, ranks in the category best 23%.
  • Speed Performance - Score 41, ranks in the category best 42%.
  • Comfort - Score 85, ranks in the category best 1%.

On the contrary, the performance of Nikon D3500 is below the category average in:

  • Versatility - Score 62, ranks among the worst 49% of its category.

However, the technical performance of your camera should be put in context. Indeed, depending on the type of photography you are interested in, each individual camera feature can impact your pictures to a different extent. This is the reason why we developed the iCamRank. iCamRank has been designed to weight all the individual technical specifications of each camera in the camerarace database, depending on different shooting conditions. Thus, here is what we suggest, depending on the photography type you like most:

  • Portrait - Good, score 51, ranks in the best 31% of its category. Nikon D3500 works well for Portrait photography, however even better options are available, which you may want to take into account.
  • Landscape - Good, score 48, ranks in the best 38% of its category. Nikon D3500 works well for Landscape photography, however even better options are available, which you may want to take into account.
  • Sport - Good, score 53, ranks in the best 40% of its category. Nikon D3500 works well for Sport photography, however even better options are available, which you may want to take into account.
  • Street - Great, score 68, ranks in the best 6% of its category. Nikon D3500 is perfect for Street photography, one of the best in its class.
  • Everyday - Great, score 69, ranks in the best 10% of its category. Nikon D3500 is perfect for everyday photography, one of the best in its class.

Last but not least, the price. You can find the Nikon D3500 sold on Amazon for a price comprised between 699.0 USD and 799.0 USD, which is in the average for this camera category.

Overall, Nikon D3500 is a good value for money. However, alternatives are also available, which you may want to take into consideration before taking the final decision. Click here to see alternative options.

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Nikon D3500 technical specs

Sensor Type

Sensor Type

CMOS

Sensor Size

APS-C

Sensor Dimensions

23.5 x 15.6 mm

Sensor Area

366.6 mm2

Sensor Resolution

24 Mp

Max Image Resolution

6000 x 4000

Max Native ISO

25600

Min Native ISO

100

RAW Support

yes

Lens

Manual Focus

yes

Lens Mount

Nikon F

Number of Lenses

287

Focal Length Multiplier

1.5

Screen Type

Screen Type

Fixed

Screen Size

3.0"

Screen Resolution

921Kdot

Live View

yes

Touch Screen

no

Viewfinder

Viewfinder

Optical (pentamirror)

Viewfinder Resolution

None

Viewfinder Coverage

95

Viewfinder Magnification

0.56

Features

Min Shutter Speed

30s

Max Shutter Speed

1/4000s

Continuous Shooting

5fps

Shutter Priority

yes

Aperture Priority

yes

Manual Exposure Mode

yes

Exposure Compensation

yes

Custom White Balance

yes

Image Stabilization

no

Built-in Flash

yes

Flash Range

7.0

Max Flash Sync

-

Flash Modes

Auto
Auto slow sync
Auto slow sync with red-eye reduction
Auto with red-eye reduction
Fill-flash
Off
Rear-curtain sync
Rear-curtain with slow sync
Red-eye reduction
Red-eye reduction with slow sync
Slow sync

External Flash

yes

AE Bracketing

no

WB Bracketing

yes

Dxo Sensor Scores

DxO Overall Score

DxO Color Depth

DxO Dynamic Range

DxO Low Light ISO

Exposure Modes

Multi-Segment

yes

Average

no

Spot

yes

Partial

no

AF-Area

no

Center Weighted

no

Autofocus

AF Touch

no

AF Continuous

yes

AF Single

yes

AF Tracking

yes

AF Selective

yes

AF Center

yes

AF MultiArea

yes

AF Live View

yes

AF Face Detection

yes

AF Contrast Detection

yes

AF Phase Detection

yes

Number of Focus Points

11

Number of Cross Focus Points

0

Video Features

Video Resolutions

1920 x 1080 (60 50 30 25 24 fps) 1280 x 720 (60 50 fps) 640 x 424 (30 25 fps)

Max Video Resolution

1920x1080

Video Formats

MPEG-4 H.264

Microphone Port

no

Headphone Port

no

Connectivity

Wireless Connectivity

Built-in

HDMI

yes

USB

USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)

Physical

Environmental Sealing

no

Water Proof

no

Dust Proof

no

Shock Proof

no

Crush Proof

no

Freeze Proof

no

Weight

365g

Physical Dimensions

124 x 97 x 70 mm

Battery Life

1550

Battery Type

Battery Pack

Battery Model

EN-EL14a

Other Features

Self Timer

Yes (2, 5, 10, 20 secs (1-9 exposures))

Timelapse Recording

no

GPS

no

Storage Type

SD SDHC SDXC

Storage Slots

1

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