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Nikon D3 vs Sony NEX-3

The Nikon D3 and the Sony Alpha NEX-3 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in August 2007 and May 2010. The D3 is a DSLR, while the NEX-3 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on a full frame (D3) and an APS-C (NEX-3) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 12.1 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 14 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Nikon D3   Sony NEX-3
Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
Digital single lens reflex Mirrorless system camera
Nikon F mount lenses Sony E mount lenses
12.1 MP, Full Frame Sensor 14 MP, APS-C Sensor
no Video 720/30p Video
ISO 200-6400 (100-25600) ISO 200-12800
Optical viewfinder Viewfinder optional
3.0" LCD, 922k dots 3.0" LCD, 920k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Tilting screen (not touch-sensitive)
11 shutter flaps per second 7 shutter flaps per second
Weathersealed bodyNot weather sealed
4300 shots per battery charge330 shots per battery charge
160 x 157 x 88 mm, 1300 g 117 x 62 x 33 mm, 297 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon D3 and the Sony Alpha NEX-3? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Nikon D3 and the Sony NEX-3. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The NEX-3 can be obtained in three different colors (black, silver, red), while the D3 is only available in black.

Size Nikon D3 vs Sony NEX-3
Compare D3 versus NEX-3 top
Comparison D3 or NEX-3 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony NEX-3 is considerably smaller (71 percent) than the Nikon D3. Moreover, the NEX-3 is substantially lighter (77 percent) than the D3. It is worth mentioning in this context that the D3 is splash and dust resistant, while the NEX-3 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. A larger imaging sensor will tend to go along with bigger and heavier lenses, although exceptions exist. You can compare the optics available for the two cameras in the Nikon Lens Catalog (D3) and the Sony E-Mount Lens Catalog (NEX-3). Mirrorless cameras, such as the NEX-3, have moreover the advantage that they can use many lenses from other systems via adapters, as they have a relatively short flange to focal plane distance.

Concerning battery life, the D3 gets 4300 shots out of its EN-EL4a battery, while the NEX-3 can take 330 images on a single charge of its NP-FW50 power pack. As can be seen in the images above, the D3 has a battery grip built in. This facilitates image-taking in portrait orientation and gives it additional battery power.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3» 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.5 in 45.9 oz 4300 Y Aug 2007 4,999- i Nikon D3
 
Sony NEX-3« 4.6 in 2.4 in 1.3 in 10.5 oz 330 n May 2010 599- i Sony NEX-3
 
Canon 1D Mark III« » 6.1 in 6.2 in 3.1 in 40.7 oz 2200 Y Feb 2007 4,499- i Canon 1D Mark III
 
Nikon D5« » 6.3 in 6.3 in 3.6 in 49.9 oz 3780 Y Jan 2016 6,499 i i Nikon D5
 
Nikon D4S« » 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.6 in 47.6 oz 3020 Y Feb 2014 6,499- i Nikon D4S
 
Nikon D4« » 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.6 in 47.3 oz 2600 Y Jan 2012 5,999- i Nikon D4
 
Nikon D3S« » 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.5 in 43.7 oz 4200 Y Oct 2009 5,199- i Nikon D3S
 
Nikon D3X« » 6.3 in 6.2 in 3.5 in 44.4 oz 4400 Y Dec 2008 7,999- i Nikon D3X
 
Nikon D700« » 5.8 in 4.8 in 3.0 in 37.9 oz 1000 Y Jul 2008 2,999- i Nikon D700
 
Nikon D300« » 5.8 in 4.5 in 2.9 in 32.6 oz 1000 Y Aug 2007 1,799- i Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« » 6.2 in 5.9 in 3.4 in 44.2 oz 3800 Y Jun 2006 4,699- i Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« » 6.2 in 5.9 in 3.4 in 44.2 oz 3800 Y Sep 2004 4,999- i Nikon D2X
 
Sony A5100« » 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.4 in 10.0 oz 400 n Aug 2014 549 i i Sony A5100
 
Sony NEX-3N« » 4.3 in 2.4 in 1.4 in 9.5 oz 480 n Feb 2013 499- i Sony NEX-3N
 
Sony NEX-5R« » 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.7 oz 330 n Aug 2012 749- i Sony NEX-5R
 
Sony NEX-5N« » 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 9.5 oz 460 n Aug 2011 699- i Sony NEX-5N
 
Sony NEX-5« » 4.4 in 2.3 in 1.5 in 10.1 oz 330 n May 2010 699- i Sony NEX-5
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The NEX-3 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 88 percent) than the D3, which puts it into a different market segment. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.

 

Sensor comparison

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon D3 features a full frame sensor and the Sony NEX-3 an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the NEX-3 is 58 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.0 and 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.

Nikon D3 and Sony NEX-3 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the NEX-3 offers a higher resolution of 14 megapixels, compared with 12.1 MP of the D3. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 5.11μm versus 8.43μm for the D3). However, it should be noted that the NEX-3 is much more recent (by 2 years and 8 months) than the D3, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.

The resolution advantage of the Sony NEX-3 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the NEX-3 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 15.3 inch or 58.3 x 38.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 12.2 inch or 46.7 x 31 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.3 x 10.2 inch or 38.9 x 25.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon D3 are 21.3 x 14.2 inch or 54.1 x 36 cm for good quality, 17 x 11.3 inch or 43.2 x 28.8 cm for very good quality, and 14.2 x 9.4 inch or 36 x 24 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Nikon D3 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 200 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Alpha NEX-3 are ISO 200 to ISO 12800 (no boost).

D3 versus NEX-3 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). Of the two cameras under review, the D3 provides substantially higher image quality than the NEX-3, with an overall score that is 13 points higher. This advantage is based on 1.4 bits higher color depth, 0.2 EV in additional dynamic range, and 1.5 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3» Full Frame 12.1 4256 2832-23.512.2229081Nikon D3
 
Sony NEX-3« APS-C 14.0 4592 3056720/30p22.112.083068Sony NEX-3
 
Canon 1D Mark III« » APS-H 10.1 3888 2592-22.711.7107871Canon 1D Mark III
 
Nikon D5« » Full Frame 20.7 5588 37124K/30p25.112.3234388Nikon D5
 
Nikon D4S« » Full Frame 16.2 4928 32801080/60p24.413.3307489Nikon D4S
 
Nikon D4« » Full Frame 16.2 4928 32801080/30p24.713.1296589Nikon D4
 
Nikon D3S« » Full Frame 12.1 4256 2832720/24p23.512.0325382Nikon D3S
 
Nikon D3X« » Full Frame 24.4 6048 4032-24.713.7199288Nikon D3X
 
Nikon D700« » Full Frame 12.1 4256 2832-23.512.2230380Nikon D700
 
Nikon D300« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.112.067967Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.210.948959Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848-22.110.947659Nikon D2X
 
Sony A5100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.812.7134780Sony A5100
 
Sony NEX-3N« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i22.812.5106774Sony NEX-3N
 
Sony NEX-5R« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.713.191078Sony NEX-5R
 
Sony NEX-5N« » APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.612.7107977Sony NEX-5N
 
Sony NEX-5« » APS-C 14.0 4592 30561080/60i22.212.279669Sony NEX-5

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The NEX-3 indeed provides for movie recording, while the D3 does not. The highest resolution format that the NEX-3 can use is 720/30p.

 

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the D3 has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the NEX-3 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. That said, the NEX-3 can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the FDA-SV1. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Nikon D3 and Sony NEX-3 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3»optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 11.0 n n Nikon D3
 
Sony NEX-3«- n 3.0 920 tilting n 1/4000s 7.0 n n Sony NEX-3
 
Canon 1D Mark III« »optical Y 3.0 230 fixed n 1/8000s 10.0 n n Canon 1D Mark III
 
Nikon D5« »optical Y 3.2 2359 fixed Y 1/8000s 14.0 n n Nikon D5
 
Nikon D4S« »optical Y 3.2 921 fixed n 1/8000s 11.0 n n Nikon D4S
 
Nikon D4« »optical Y 3.2 921 fixed n 1/8000s 11.0 n n Nikon D4
 
Nikon D3S« »optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 11.0 n n Nikon D3S
 
Nikon D3X« »optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n Nikon D3X
 
Nikon D700« »optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 8.0 Y n Nikon D700
 
Nikon D300« »optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 6.0 Y n Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »optical Y 2.5 230 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »optical Y 2.5 235 fixed n 1/8000s 5.0 n n Nikon D2X
 
Sony A5100« »- n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n Sony A5100
 
Sony NEX-3N« »- n 3.0 460 tilting n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n Sony NEX-3N
 
Sony NEX-5R« »- n 3.0 920 tilting Y 1/4000s 10.0 n n Sony NEX-5R
 
Sony NEX-5N« »- n 3.0 920 tilting Y 1/4000s 10.0 n n Sony NEX-5N
 
Sony NEX-5« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 1/4000s 7.0 n n Sony NEX-5

One feature that is present on the D3, but is missing on the NEX-3 is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.

The NEX-3 has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies. In contrast, the D3 does not have a selfie-screen.

The Nikon D3 has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

The D3 writes its imaging data to Compact Flash cards, while the NEX-3 uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. The D3 features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the NEX-3 only has one slot.

 

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon D3 and Sony Alpha NEX-3 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3»Y----mini2.0---Nikon D3
 
Sony NEX-3«Ystereomono--mini2.0---Sony NEX-3
 
Canon 1D Mark III« »Y-----2.0---Canon 1D Mark III
 
Nikon D5« »YstereomonoYYmini3.0---Nikon D5
 
Nikon D4S« »YmonomonoYYmini2.0---Nikon D4S
 
Nikon D4« »Ymonomono--micro2.0---Nikon D4
 
Nikon D3S« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Nikon D3S
 
Nikon D3X« »Y----mini2.0---Nikon D3X
 
Nikon D700« »Y----mini2.0---Nikon D700
 
Nikon D300« »Y----mini2.0---Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »Y-----2.0---Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »Y-----2.0---Nikon D2X
 
Sony A5100« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony A5100
 
Sony NEX-3N« »-stereomono--micro2.0---Sony NEX-3N
 
Sony NEX-5R« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Sony NEX-5R
 
Sony NEX-5N« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Sony NEX-5N
 
Sony NEX-5« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Sony NEX-5

Studio photographers will appreciate that the Nikon D3 (unlike the NEX-3) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.

Both the D3 and the NEX-3 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D3 was replaced by the Nikon D4, while the NEX-3 was followed by the Sony NEX-3N. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Sony websites.


Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Nikon D3 and the Sony NEX-3? Which camera is better? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.

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Advantages of the Nikon D3:

  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (13 points) in the DXO overall assessment.
  • Richer colors: Generates images with noticeably better colors (1.4 bits more color depth).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Requires less light for good images (1.5 stops ISO advantage).
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • Easier setting verification: Features an LCD display on top to control shooting parameters.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (11 vs 7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • More portrait friendly: Features an integrated vertical grip for easier portrait shooting.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (4300 versus 330) on a single battery charge.
  • Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
  • Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
  • Greater peace of mind: Features a second card slot as a backup in case of memory card failure.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in August 2007).

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Arguments in favor of the Sony Alpha NEX-3:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (14 vs 12.1MP), which boosts linear resolution by 8%.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 720/30p video.
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • More compact: Is smaller (117x62mm vs 160x157mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 1003g or 77 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • More legacy lens friendly: Can use many non-native lenses via adapters.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (88 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 8 months of technical progress since the D3 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D3 is the clear winner of the match-up (14 : 9 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

D3 14:09 NEX-3

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon D3 and the Sony NEX-3 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the D3 or the NEX-3. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.

Expert reviews

This is where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3»-+ +5/5o4.5/5 Aug 2007 4,999- i Nikon D3
 
Sony NEX-3«-70/1004.5/55/54/5 May 2010 599- i Sony NEX-3
 
Canon 1D Mark III« »---o- Feb 2007 4,499- i Canon 1D Mark III
 
Nikon D5« »-89/1004.5/55/55/5 Jan 2016 6,499 i i Nikon D5
 
Nikon D4S« »--4.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2014 6,499- i Nikon D4S
 
Nikon D4« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Jan 2012 5,999- i Nikon D4
 
Nikon D3S« »-89/1004.5/55/55/5 Oct 2009 5,199- i Nikon D3S
 
Nikon D3X« »-86/1004/55/55/5 Dec 2008 7,999- i Nikon D3X
 
Nikon D700« »89/100+ +4.5/55/54.5/5 Jul 2008 2,999- i Nikon D700
 
Nikon D300« »+ ++ +5/5o4.5/5 Aug 2007 1,799- i Nikon D300
 
Nikon D2Xs« »---o- Jun 2006 4,699- i Nikon D2Xs
 
Nikon D2X« »-+ +-o- Sep 2004 4,999- i Nikon D2X
 
Sony A5100« »+-4.5/54.5/55/5 Aug 2014 549 i i Sony A5100
 
Sony NEX-3N« »--4.5/54/54.5/5 Feb 2013 499- i Sony NEX-3N
 
Sony NEX-5R« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Aug 2012 749- i Sony NEX-5R
 
Sony NEX-5N« »+ +79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Aug 2011 699- i Sony NEX-5N
 
Sony NEX-5« »+ +71/1004.5/54/54/5 May 2010 699- i Sony NEX-5
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Nikon D3:
Check Ebay offers
Sony NEX-3:
Check Ebay offers

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications: Nikon D3 vs Sony NEX-3

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Nikon F mount lenses Sony E mount lenses
    Launch Date August 2007 May 2010
    Launch Price USD 4999 USD 599
    Sensor Specs Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format Full Frame Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 36.0 x 23.9 mm 23.4 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 860.4 mm2 365.04 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 43.2 mm 28.1 mm
    Crop Factor 1.0x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 12.1 Megapixels 14 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4256 x 2832 pixels 4592 x 3056 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 8.43 μm 5.11 μm
    Pixel Density 1.40 MP/cm2 3.84 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability no Video 720/30p Video
    ISO Setting 200-6400 ISO 200-12800 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-25600 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor EXPEED BIONZ
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 81 68
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 23.5 22.1
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 12.2 12.0
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 2290 830
    Screen Specs Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Viewfinder optional
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.70x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel no Top Display
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 922k dots 920k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Tilting screen
    Shooting Specs Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 11 shutter flaps/s 7 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inno Intervalometer
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash no On-Board Flash
    Storage Medium CF cards MS or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Dual card slots Single card slot
    Connectivity Specs Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket no PC Sync
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Nikon D3 Sony NEX-3
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyNot weather sealed
    Battery Type EN-EL4a NP-FW50
    Battery Life (CIPA)4300 shots per charge330 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 160 x 157 x 88 mm
    (6.3 x 6.2 x 3.5 in)
    117 x 62 x 33 mm
    (4.6 x 2.4 x 1.3 in)
    Camera Weight 1300 g (45.9 oz) 297 g (10.5 oz)

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