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Nikon D3100 vs Olympus E-M1 III

The Nikon D3100 and the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in August 2010 and February 2020. The D3100 is a DSLR, while the E-M1 III is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on an APS-C (D3100) and a Four Thirds (E-M1 III) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 14.2 megapixels, whereas the Olympus provides 20.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Nikon D3100 versus Olympus E-M1 III
Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
Digital single lens reflex Mirrorless system camera
Nikon F mount lenses Micro Four Thirds lenses
14.2 MP, APS-C Sensor 20.2 MP, Four Thirds Sensor
1080/24p Video 4K/30p Video
ISO 100-3,200 (100 - 12,800) ISO 200-25,600
Optical viewfinder Electronic viewfinder (2360k dots)
3.0 LCD, 230k dots 3.0 LCD, 1037k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel touchscreen
3 shutter flaps per second 18 shutter flaps per second
Lens stabilization onlyIn-body stabilization
not weather sealedWeathersealed body
550 shots per battery charge420 shots per battery charge
124 x 96 x 75 mm, 505 g 134 x 91 x 69 mm, 580 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon D3100 and the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III? 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

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Nikon D3100 and the Olympus E-M1 III is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The D3100 can be obtained in two different colors (black, red), while the E-M1 III is only available in black.

Size Nikon D3100 vs Olympus E-M1 III
Compare D3100 versus E-M1 III top
Comparison D3100 or E-M1 III rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-M1 III is somewhat larger (2 percent) than the Nikon D3100. Moreover, the E-M1 III is markedly heavier (15 percent) than the D3100. It is noteworthy in this context that the E-M1 III is splash and dust-proof, while the D3100 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 (D3100) and the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog (E-M1 III). Mirrorless cameras, such as the E-M1 III, 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 D3100 gets 550 shots out of its EN-EL14 battery, while the E-M1 III can take 420 images on a single charge of its BLH-1 power pack. The power pack in the E-M1 III can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient when travelling.

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, you can navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from a broad list of cameras there.

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Body Specifications
    Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Nikon D3100 124 mm 96 mm 75 mm 505 g 550 n Aug 2010 599i
2.
 
Olympus E-M1 III 134 mm 91 mm 69 mm 580 g 420 Y Feb 2020 1,799 i
3.
 
Nikon D3200 125 mm 96 mm 77 mm 505 g 540 n Apr 2012 599i
4.
 
Nikon D5100 128 mm 97 mm 79 mm 560 g 660 n Apr 2011 749i
5.
 
Nikon D7000 132 mm 105 mm 77 mm 780 g 1050 Y Sep 2010 1,499i
6.
 
Nikon D3000 126 mm 97 mm 64 mm 536 g 500 n Jul 2009 599i
7.
 
Nikon D5000 127 mm 104 mm 80 mm 590 g 510 n Apr 2009 749i
8.
 
Nikon D60 126 mm 94 mm 64 mm 522 g 500 n Jan 2008 629i
9.
 
Nikon D40X 124 mm 94 mm 64 mm 522 g 520 n Mar 2007 729i
10.
 
Nikon D40 124 mm 94 mm 64 mm 522 g 470 n Nov 2006 499i
11.
 
Olympus E-M5 III 125 mm 85 mm 50 mm 414 g 310 Y Oct 2019 1,199 i
12.
 
Olympus E-M1X 144 mm 147 mm 75 mm 997 g 870 Y Jan 2019 2,999 i
13.
 
Olympus E-M1 II 134 mm 91 mm 67 mm 574 g 440 Y Sep 2016 1,999 i
14.
 
Panasonic G95 130 mm 94 mm 77 mm 536 g 290 Y Apr 2019 999 i
15.
 
Panasonic G9 137 mm 97 mm 92 mm 658 g 400 Y Nov 2017 1,699 i
16.
 
Sony NEX-5N 111 mm 59 mm 38 mm 269 g 460 n Aug 2011 699i
17.
 
Sony NEX-C3 110 mm 60 mm 33 mm 225 g 400 n Jun 2011 599i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. 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 D3100 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 67 percent) than the E-M1 III, 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

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Sensor comparison

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon D3100 features an APS-C sensor and the Olympus E-M1 III a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the E-M1 III is 37 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 2.0. The sensor in the D3100 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the E-M1 III offers a 4:3 aspect.

In terms of underlying technology, both cameras are build around CMOS sensors.

Nikon D3100 and Olympus E-M1 III sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the E-M1 III offers a higher resolution of 20.2 megapixels, compared with 14.2 MP of the D3100. 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 3.34μm versus 5.01μm for the D3100). However, it should be noted that the E-M1 III is much more recent (by 9 years and 5 months) than the D3100, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the E-M1 III has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The resolution advantage of the Olympus E-M1 III implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the E-M1 III for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 25.9 x 19.4 inches or 65.8 x 49.4 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 20.7 x 15.6 inches or 52.7 x 39.5 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 17.3 x 13 inches or 43.9 x 32.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon D3100 are 23 x 15.4 inches or 58.5 x 39 cm for good quality, 18.4 x 12.3 inches or 46.8 x 31.2 cm for very good quality, and 15.4 x 10.2 inches or 39 x 26 cm for excellent quality prints.

The E-M1 III has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

Unlike the D3100, the E-M1 III has the capacity to capture high quality composite images (80MP) by combining multiple shots after shifting its sensor by miniscule distances. This multi-shot, pixel-shift mode is most suitable for photography of stationary objects (landscapes, studio scenes).

The Nikon D3100 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III are ISO 200 to ISO 25600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 64-25600.

D3100 versus E-M1 III MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

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Sensor Characteristics
    Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
1.
 
Nikon D3100 APS-C 14.2 4608 30721080/24p22.511.391967
2.
 
Olympus E-M1 III Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
3.
 
Nikon D3200 APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/30p24.113.2113181
4.
 
Nikon D5100 APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.513.6118380
5.
 
Nikon D7000 APS-C 16.1 4928 326410800/24p23.513.9116780
6.
 
Nikon D3000 APS-C 10.0 3872 2592none22.311.156362
7.
 
Nikon D5000 APS-C 12.2 4288 2848720/24p22.712.586872
8.
 
Nikon D60 APS-C 10.0 3872 2592none22.511.456265
9.
 
Nikon D40X APS-C 10.0 3872 2592none22.411.451663
10.
 
Nikon D40 APS-C 6.0 3008 2000none21.011.056156
11.
 
Olympus E-M5 III Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
12.
 
Olympus E-M1X Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
13.
 
Olympus E-M1 II Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p23.712.8131280
14.
 
Panasonic G95 Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
15.
 
Panasonic G9 Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/60p........
16.
 
Sony NEX-5N APS-C 16.0 4912 32641080/60i23.612.7107977
17.
 
Sony NEX-C3 APS-C 16.0 4912 3264720/30p22.712.2108373

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the E-M1 III provides a better video resolution than the D3100. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the Nikon is limited to 1080/24p.

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Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the E-M1 III has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), while the D3100 has an optical one. Both systems have their advantages, with the electronic viewfinder making it possible to project supplementary shooting information into the framing view, whereas the optical viewfinder offers lag-free viewing and a very clear framing image. The viewfinder in the E-M1 III offers a wider field of view (100%) than the one in the D3100 (95%), so that a larger proportion of the captured image is visible in the finder. In addition, the viewfinder of the E-M1 III has a higher magnification (0.83x vs 0.53x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Nikon D3100 and Olympus E-M1 III in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.

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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
1.
 
Nikon D3100optical n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
2.
 
Olympus E-M1 III2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 18.0 n Y
3.
 
Nikon D3200optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
4.
 
Nikon D5100optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
5.
 
Nikon D7000optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 6.0 Y n
6.
 
Nikon D3000optical n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
7.
 
Nikon D5000optical n 2.7 230 full-flex n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n
8.
 
Nikon D60optical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
9.
 
Nikon D40Xoptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
10.
 
Nikon D40optical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n
11.
 
Olympus E-M5 III2360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y
12.
 
Olympus E-M1X2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 18.0 n Y
13.
 
Olympus E-M1 II2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 18.0 n Y
14.
 
Panasonic G952360 n 3.0 1240 swivel Y 1/4000s 9.0 Y Y
15.
 
Panasonic G93680 Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/8000s 20.0 n Y
16.
 
Sony NEX-5Noptional n 3.0 920 tilting Y 1/4000s 10.0 n n
17.
 
Sony NEX-C3optional n 3.0 920 tilting n 1/4000s 5.5 n n

One difference between the cameras concerns the presence of an on-board flash. The D3100 has one, while the E-M1 III does not. While the built-in flash of the D3100 is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light.

The E-M1 III 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 D3100 does not have a selfie-screen.

The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the E-M1 III is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).

The Olympus E-M1 III 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.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the D3100 and the E-M1 III write their files to SDXC cards. The E-M1 III features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the D3100 only has one slot. The E-M1 III supports UHS-II cards on its first slot and UHS-I on its second one, while the D3100 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

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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 D3100 and Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
    Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
1.
 
Nikon D3100Ymonomono--mini2.0---
2.
 
Olympus E-M1 IIIYstereomonoYYmicro3.1Y-Y
3.
 
Nikon D3200YmonomonoY-mini2.0---
4.
 
Nikon D5100YmonomonoY-mini2.0---
5.
 
Nikon D7000YmonomonoY-mini2.0---
6.
 
Nikon D3000Y-----2.0---
7.
 
Nikon D5000Ymonomono--mini2.0---
8.
 
Nikon D60Y-----2.0---
9.
 
Nikon D40XY-----2.0---
10.
 
Nikon D40Y-----2.0---
11.
 
Olympus E-M5 IIIYstereomonoY-micro2.0Y-Y
12.
 
Olympus E-M1XYstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y-Y
13.
 
Olympus E-M1 IIYstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y--
14.
 
Panasonic G95YstereomonoYYmicro2.0Y-Y
15.
 
Panasonic G9YstereomonoYYfull3.0Y-Y
16.
 
Sony NEX-5NYstereomono--mini2.0---
17.
 
Sony NEX-C3Ystereomono--mini2.0---

It is notable that the E-M1 III offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the D3100 does not provide wifi capability.

Studio photographers will appreciate that the Olympus E-M1 III (unlike the D3100) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.

The E-M1 III is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Olympus. In contrast, the D3100 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the D3100 was succeeded by the Nikon D3200. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Olympus websites.

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Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Nikon D3100 and the Olympus E-M1 III? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.

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Advantages of the Nikon D3100:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Brighter framing: Features an optical viewfinder for clear, lag-free composition.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 75g or 13 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (550 versus 420) on a single battery charge.
  • Easier fill-in: Is equipped with a small onboard flash to brighten deep shadow areas.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (67 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in August 2010).

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Reasons to prefer the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark III:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (20.2 vs 14.2MP), which boosts linear resolution by 17%.
  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • High quality composites: Can combine several shots after pixel-shifting its sensor.
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/24p).
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
  • Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
  • Better sound control: Has a headphone port that enables audio monitoring while recording.
  • More framing info: Has an electronic viewfinder that displays shooting data.
  • More complete view: Has a viewfinder with a larger field of view (100% vs 95%).
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.83x vs 0.53x).
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1037k vs 230k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (18 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
  • Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
  • Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
  • More legacy lens friendly: Can use many non-native lenses via adapters.
  • Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (3.1 vs 2.0).
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • 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.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Supports Ultra High Speed (UHS-II and UHS-I) SDXC cards.
  • More modern: Reflects 9 years and 5 months of technical progress since the D3100 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the E-M1 III is the clear winner of the contest (29 : 7 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 sports photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a street photog, and a person interested in family portraits has distinct needs from a landscape shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

D3100 07:29 E-M1 III

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon D3100 and the Olympus E-M1 III 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 specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the D3100 or the E-M1 III. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). 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.

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Expert Camera Reviews
     Camera 
 Model 
 AP 
 score 
 CL 
 score 
 DPR 
 score 
 EPZ 
 score 
 PB 
 score 
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
1.
 
Nikon D31005/5+ +72/1004.5/54.5/5 Aug 2010 599i
2.
 
Olympus E-M1 III5/5..83/1004.5/54/5 Feb 2020 1,799 i
3.
 
Nikon D32005/5+ +73/1004.5/54.5/5 Apr 2012 599i
4.
 
Nikon D51005/5+ +76/1004.5/54.5/5 Apr 2011 749i
5.
 
Nikon D70004/5..80/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2010 1,499i
6.
 
Nikon D3000..+72/1004/54.5/5 Jul 2009 599i
7.
 
Nikon D5000..+ +75/1004/54.5/5 Apr 2009 749i
8.
 
Nikon D60..80/100+ +4/54.5/5 Jan 2008 629i
9.
 
Nikon D40X..79/100+ +4/54/5 Mar 2007 729i
10.
 
Nikon D40..81/100+ +o4.5/5 Nov 2006 499i
11.
 
Olympus E-M5 III5/5+82/1004.5/54.5/5 Oct 2019 1,199 i
12.
 
Olympus E-M1X4.5/5o..4.5/5.. Jan 2019 2,999 i
13.
 
Olympus E-M1 II5/5+ +85/1004.5/54.5/5 Sep 2016 1,999 i
14.
 
Panasonic G954.5/5+83/1004.5/54.5/5 Apr 2019 999 i
15.
 
Panasonic G9..+ +85/1005/55/5 Nov 2017 1,699 i
16.
 
Sony NEX-5N3/5+ +79/1004.5/54.5/5 Aug 2011 699i
17.
 
Sony NEX-C33/5+ +74/1004.5/54/5 Jun 2011 599i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Nikon D3100:
Check Ebay offers
Olympus E-M1 III:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. 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 D3100 vs Olympus E-M1 III

    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 D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Nikon F mount lenses Micro Four Thirds lenses
    Launch Date August 2010 February 2020
    Launch Price USD 599 USD 1,799
    Sensor Specs Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor Four Thirds Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.1 x 15.4 mm 17.3 x 13.0 mm
    Sensor Area 355.74 mm2 224.9 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 27.8 mm 21.6 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 2.0x
    Sensor Resolution 14.2 Megapixels 20.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4608 x 3072 pixels 5184 x 3888 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 5.01 μm 3.34 μm
    Pixel Density 3.98 MP/cm2 8.96 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/24p Video 4K/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 3,200 ISO 200 - 25,600 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 12,800 ISO 64 - 25,600 ISO
    Image Processor EXPEED 2 TruePic IX
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 67 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 22.5 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.3 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 919 ..
    Screen Specs Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.53x 0.83x
    Viewfinder Resolution 2360k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 230k dots 1037k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Swivel screen
    Touch Input no Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    Focus System Phase-detect AF On-Sensor Phase-detect
    Manual Focusing Aidno Peaking FeatureFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/4000s 1/8000s
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 18 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy100 000 actuations400 000 actuations
    Electronic Shutterno E-Shutterup to 1/32000s
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Image StabilizationLens stabilization onlyIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash no On-Board Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Dual card slots
    UHS card support no Single UHS-II
    Connectivity Specs Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash no PC Sync PC Sync socket
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 3.1
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Microphone Port no MIC socket External MIC port
    Headphone Socket no Headphone port Headphone port
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Nikon D3100 Olympus E-M1 III
    Environmental Sealingnot weather sealedWeathersealed body
    Battery Type EN-EL14 BLH-1
    Battery Life (CIPA)550 shots per charge420 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging no USB charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 124 x 96 x 75 mm
    (4.9 x 3.8 x 3.0 in)
    134 x 91 x 69 mm
    (5.3 x 3.6 x 2.7 in)
    Camera Weight 505 g (17.8 oz) 580 g (20.5 oz)

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