Nikon D5000: The Ultimate Camera for Photography Enthusiasts

Learn everything about the Nikon D5000 camera, including its advanced features, exceptional image quality, and user-friendly interface.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Nikon D5000 article cover photo

Key Features

Jun 12 2009


12 megapixels


Sensor TypeAPS-C

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Overview of the D5000

As a photography enthusiast, you know the importance of choosing the right camera to capture stunning and unforgettable moments. If you're looking for a versatile and high-performing camera, the Nikon D5000 is what you need. This camera boasts a 12.3-megapixel CMOS sensor and 3D Color Matrix Metering II providing exceptional image quality and perfect color accuracy. Additionally, the D5000's Vari-angle LCD screen allows you to angle the camera and shoot from a unique perspective. With its advanced features, user-friendly interface, and compatibility with various lenses, the Nikon D5000 is the ultimate camera for any photography enthusiast. Let's dive deeper into the key features that make the Nikon D5000 a must-have in your camera bag.

Nikon D5000 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Nikon D5000 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High resolution sensor
Fast autofocus
Excellent low light performance
Articulating LCD screen
HD video recording capability
Compatibility with a variety of lenses
Good battery life
Built-in flash


No built-in image stabilization
Limited external controls
No wireless connectivity
No GPS functionality
Limited buffer depth
No weather sealing
Limited dynamic range
Expensive compared to other entry-level DSLRs

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Nikon D5000

Weather sealed
Dimensions127 x 104 x 80mm

Weather Sealing

The Nikon D5000 is not sealed against water and dust, so it's important to be careful when using it in such conditions. If you often shoot in environments with water or dust, it's recommended to check out another camera with weather sealing.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderOptical (pentamirror)
Screen TypeFully Articulated
Screen Resolution230k dots
Body typeCompact SLR

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fully articulated 2.70" screen, with a display resolution of 230k dots. This makes the Nikon D5000 very suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you can view yourself while shooting selfies. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


D5000 includes a optical (pentamirror) viewfinder with no electronic viewfinder of resolution with a coverage of 95% and a magnification of 0.52x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Nikon D5000 has a 12MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 12 pixels. Nikon D5000 has a native ISO range of 200 - 3200 which can be boosted to null - 6400. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Jun 12 2009


200 - 3200

ISO Range

Extended ISOnull - 6400
Max resolution4288 x 2848 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


72 / 102

Color Depth

22.7 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

12.5 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

868 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Nikon D5000 camera has above average color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also above average, allowing it to retain low amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is poor, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the D5000 is average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: APS-C



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageSD/SDHC card
Battery Life510 shots
Battery ModelEN-EL9a
Wireless Connectivity


The Nikon D5000 supports SD/SDHC card with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Nikon D5000 uses the EN-EL9a model of battery pack. This is rated for 510 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Nikon D5000 has built in flash which is great for event photography and in low light situations. It also offers a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Nikon D5000 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/4000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Nikon D5000 includes two autofocus (AF) systems: contrast detection and phase detection, with 11 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Nikon D5000?

The Nikon D5000 features a CMOS sensor

Is the Nikon D5000 weather sealed?

No the D5000 does not have weather sealing.

When was the Nikon D5000 announced?

The Nikon D5000 was announced on Jun 12 2009

Does the Nikon D5000 have in-body image stabilization?

No the D5000 does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Nikon D5000?

The D5000 has a native ISO range of 200-3200, which can be expanded to ISO null-6400 for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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