Nikon D3200 vs D700
The Nikon D3200 and the Nikon D700 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in April 2012 and July 2008. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are based on an APS-C (D3200) and a full frame (D700) sensor. The D3200 has a resolution of 24.1 megapixels, whereas the D700 provides 12.1 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Nikon F mount lenses||Nikon F mount lenses|
|24.1 MP, APS-C Sensor||12.1 MP, Full Frame Sensor|
|1080/30p Video||no Video|
|ISO 100-6,400 (100 - 12,800)||ISO 200-6,400 (100 - 25,600)|
|Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|3.0 LCD, 921k dots||3.0 LCD, 922k dots|
|Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)||Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|4 shutter flaps per second||8 shutter flaps per second|
|not weather sealed||Weathersealed body|
|540 shots per battery charge||1000 shots per battery charge|
|125 x 96 x 77 mm, 505 g||147 x 123 x 77 mm, 1074 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon D3200 and the Nikon D700? 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.
The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Nikon D3200 and the Nikon D700. 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 D3200 can be obtained in two different colors (black, red), while the D700 is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D700 is considerably larger (51 percent) than the Nikon D3200. Moreover, the D700 is substantially heavier (113 percent) than the D3200. It is noteworthy in this context that the D700 is splash and dust-proof, while the D3200 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 (as in the D700) will tend to go along with bigger and heavier lenses, while more compact options are available for the smaller-sensor camera (D3200). You can compare the optics available in the Nikon Lens Catalog.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.
|Nikon D3200||125 mm||96 mm||77 mm||505 g||540||n||Apr 2012||599|
|Nikon D700||147 mm||123 mm||77 mm||1074 g||1000||Y||Jul 2008||2,999|
|Nikon D5600||124 mm||97 mm||70 mm||465 g||970||n||Nov 2016||699|
|Nikon D3400||124 mm||98 mm||76 mm||445 g||1200||n||Aug 2016||499|
|Nikon D5500||124 mm||97 mm||70 mm||420 g||820||n||Jan 2015||899|
|Nikon D810||146 mm||123 mm||82 mm||980 g||1200||Y||Jun 2014||3,299|
|Nikon D3300||124 mm||98 mm||76 mm||430 g||700||n||Jan 2014||499|
|Nikon D7100||136 mm||107 mm||76 mm||765 g||950||Y||Feb 2013||1,199|
|Nikon D5300||125 mm||98 mm||76 mm||480 g||600||n||Oct 2013||799|
|Nikon D800||146 mm||123 mm||82 mm||1000 g||900||Y||Feb 2012||2,999|
|Nikon D5200||129 mm||98 mm||78 mm||555 g||500||n||Nov 2012||749|
|Nikon D5100||128 mm||97 mm||79 mm||560 g||660||n||Apr 2011||749|
|Nikon D3100||124 mm||96 mm||75 mm||505 g||550||n||Aug 2010||599|
|Nikon D3S||160 mm||157 mm||88 mm||1240 g||4200||Y||Oct 2009||5,199|
|Nikon D3X||160 mm||157 mm||88 mm||1260 g||4400||Y||Dec 2008||7,999|
|Nikon D3||160 mm||157 mm||88 mm||1300 g||4300||Y||Aug 2007||4,999|
|Sony RX1R||113 mm||65 mm||70 mm||482 g||270||n||Jun 2013||2,799|
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The D3200 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 80 percent) than the D700, 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.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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 associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon D3200 features an APS-C sensor and the Nikon D700 a full frame sensor. The sensor area in the D700 is 141 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 1.0. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
In terms of chip-set technology, the D3200 uses a more advanced image processing engine (EXPEED 3) than the D700 (EXPEED), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Nikon D3200 offers a higher resolution of 24.1 megapixels, compared with 12.1 MP of the Nikon D700. 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 3.85μm versus 8.43μm for the D700). However, it should be noted that the D3200 is much more recent (by 3 years and 9 months) than the D700, 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 Nikon D3200 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the D3200 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30.1 x 20 inches or 76.4 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24.1 x 16 inches or 61.1 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20.1 x 13.3 inches or 50.9 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon D700 are 21.3 x 14.2 inches or 54.1 x 36 cm for good quality, 17 x 11.3 inches or 43.2 x 28.8 cm for very good quality, and 14.2 x 9.4 inches or 36 x 24 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Nikon D3200 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D700 are ISO 200 to ISO 6400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-25600.
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"). The Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.
|Nikon D700||Full Frame||12.1||4256||2832||none||23.5||12.2||2303||80|
|Nikon D810||Full Frame||36.2||7360||4912||1080/60p||25.7||14.8||2853||97|
|Nikon D800||Full Frame||36.2||7360||4912||1080/30p||25.3||14.4||2853||95|
|Nikon D3S||Full Frame||12.1||4256||2832||720/24p||23.5||12.0||3253||82|
|Nikon D3X||Full Frame||24.4||6048||4032||none||24.7||13.7||1992||88|
|Nikon D3||Full Frame||12.1||4256||2832||none||23.5||12.2||2290||81|
|Sony RX1R||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||25.0||13.6||2537||91|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The D3200 indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the D700 does not. The highest resolution format that the D3200 can use is 1080/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The D3200 and the D700 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinders of both cameras offer the same field of view (95%), but the viewfinder of the D700 has a higher magnification than the one of the D3200 (0.72x vs 0.53x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Nikon D3200 and Nikon D700 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
One feature that is present on the D700, but is missing on the D3200 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 Nikon D700 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 D3200 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the D700 uses Compact Flash cards.
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 D3200 and Nikon D700 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
Studio photographers will appreciate that the Nikon D700 (unlike the D3200) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.
Both the D3200 and the D700 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D700 was replaced by the Nikon D800, while the D3200 was followed by the Nikon D3300. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon website.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon D3200 or the Nikon D700 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon D3200:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (24.1 vs 12.1MP) with a 41% higher linear resolution.
- More dynamic range: Captures a larger spectrum of light and dark details (1 EV of extra DR).
- Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (EXPEED 3 vs EXPEED).
- Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 1080/30p movies.
- More compact: Is smaller (125x96mm vs 147x123mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 569g or 53 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (80 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 3 years and 9 months of technical progress since the D700 launch.
Advantages of the Nikon D700:
- Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (1 stops ISO advantage).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.72x vs 0.53x).
- Easier setting verification: Features a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8 vs 4 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (1000 versus 540) out of a single battery charge.
- Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
- Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in July 2008).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D700 emerges as the winner of the match-up (10 : 8 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon D3200 and the Nikon D700 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing 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 says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the D3200 and the D700 in practical situations. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.
This is why expert reviews are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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.
|Nikon D3200||+ +||73/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2012||599|
|Nikon D700||89/100||+ +||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2008||2,999|
|Nikon D5600||..||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4/5||Nov 2016||699|
|Nikon D3400||+||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2016||499|
|Nikon D5500||+||79/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2015||899|
|Nikon D810||..||86/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2014||3,299|
|Nikon D3300||+||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2014||499|
|Nikon D7100||+ +||85/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2013||1,199|
|Nikon D5300||+ +||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||799|
|Nikon D800||+ +||82/100||5/5||5/5||5/5||Feb 2012||2,999|
|Nikon D5200||+ +||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Nov 2012||749|
|Nikon D5100||+ +||76/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2011||749|
|Nikon D3100||+ +||72/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2010||599|
|Nikon D3S||..||89/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Oct 2009||5,199|
|Nikon D3X||..||86/100||4/5||5/5||5/5||Dec 2008||7,999|
|Nikon D3||..||+ +||5/5||o||4.5/5||Aug 2007||4,999|
|Sony RX1R||..||..||4/5||o||4.5/5||Jun 2013||2,799|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time 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.
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.
- Canon G1 X Mark II vs Nikon D700
- Canon G5 X vs Nikon D3200
- Canon T6 vs Nikon D3200
- Fujifilm X-A3 vs Nikon D700
- Fujifilm X-Pro1 vs Nikon D700
- Fujifilm X-T4 vs Nikon D700
- Fujifilm X100T vs Nikon D700
- Leica S2 vs Nikon D3200
- Nikon D1 vs Nikon D700
- Nikon D3200 vs Nikon D3300
- Nikon D700 vs Panasonic FZ1000 II
- Nikon D700 vs Panasonic GH3
Specifications: Nikon D3200 vs Nikon D700
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 Model||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Camera Type||Digital single lens reflex||Digital single lens reflex|
|Camera Lens||Nikon F mount lenses||Nikon F mount lenses|
|Launch Date||April 2012||July 2008|
|Launch Price||USD 599||USD 2,999|
|Sensor Specs||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||Full Frame Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.2 x 15.4 mm||36.0 x 23.9 mm|
|Sensor Area||357.28 mm2||860.4 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||27.8 mm||43.2 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||24.1 Megapixels||12.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||6016 x 4000 pixels||4256 x 2832 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.85 μm||8.43 μm|
|Pixel Density||6.74 MP/cm2||1.40 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 6,400 ISO||200 - 6,400 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 12,800 ISO||100 - 25,600 ISO|
|Image Processor||EXPEED 3||EXPEED|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||81||80|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||24.1||23.5|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||13.2||12.2|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||1131||2303|
|Screen Specs||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||Optical viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||95%||95%|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||921k dots||922k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Shooting Specs||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Focus System||Phase-detect AF||Phase-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||4 shutter flaps/s||8 shutter flaps/s|
|Shutter Life Expectancy||100 000 actuations||150 000 actuations|
|Time-Lapse Photography||no Intervalometer||Intervalometer built-in|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||CF cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|Connectivity Specs||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Studio Flash||no PC Sync||PC Sync socket|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Nikon D3200||Nikon D700|
|Environmental Sealing||not weather sealed||Weathersealed body|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||540 shots per charge||1000 shots per charge|
125 x 96 x 77 mm
(4.9 x 3.8 x 3.0 in)
147 x 123 x 77 mm
(5.8 x 4.8 x 3.0 in)
|Camera Weight||505 g (17.8 oz)||1074 g (37.9 oz)|
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