Sony A3000 vs Nikon D3200

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Going camera shopping? We have two great cameras for you. The Sony A3000 is a mirrorless camera and the Nikon D3200 is a DSLR. The Sony A3000 vs Nikon D3200 comparison will show you how the Sony A3000 outperforms the Nikon D3200

Sony A3000 vs Nikon D3200 Overview

Two entry level cameras, the Sony A3000 came out in August 2013 while the Nikon D3200 was released in July 2012. Mirrorless cameras are becoming excellent alternatives to DSLRs and this article will look into that.

Sony A3000 Overview

The Sony A3000 comes with a plastic body and a 20 megapixels resolution. It is a mirrorless compact camera with a 3-inch screen. It comes with an electronic viewfinder with 100% coverage. It allows you to create panoramas in-camera.

It has an APS-C-sized sensor with 25 focus points and in-built image stabilization. Its ISO levels go up to 1600, making it great for low-light situations. It has a 1080p25 24Mbps video mode which allows you to capture detailed and high-quality videos.

Nikon D3200 Overview

The Nikon D3200 has a plastic body and a 24 megapixels resolution. It is a system DSLR camera with a 3-inch screen. It has an optical viewfinder with 95% coverage.

It comes with a 1080 x 30fps video resolution and features such as a cinema app and phase detection autofocus. It has 11 focus points and one cross-type focus point. Its EXPEED 3 processor gives you great color dynamics and great image quality.

Person with a black nikon camera

Sony A3000 vs Nikon D3200 Comparison

There are not a lot of similarities between the Sony A3000 and Nikon D3200. This is because they belong to different generations. Some of the similarities include their sensor sizes and screen.

  • These two cameras come with an APS-C-sized sensor. Although smaller than the other sensors out there, this sensor allows you to capture great pictures in low light conditions and gives you a dynamic range too.
  • They both have a 3-inch fixed screen which allows you to navigate around the camera with ease.
  • These cameras have a shutter speed range of 1/4000 seconds to 30 seconds. The maximum shutter speed of 1/4000 seconds is great for capturing pictures without motion blur, however, it would not be suitable for professional sports photography.


The Sony A3000 and the Nikon D3200 have several differences in their processors, resolution, focus points, and much more which result in different performances. In most areas though, the Sony A3000 comes out on top.


The Nikon D3200 comes with 24 megapixels resolution whereas the Sony A3000 has 20 Megapixels resolution. These resolutions determine how detailed your images will be.

The 24 Megapixels allow you to take larger-sized images and this size is comparable with the more advanced camera out there. Also, the difference here is also apparent in their image quality and hence, Nikon D3200 comes out on top here.

Focus Points

The Nikon D3200 has 11 focus points (with one cross-type focus point) while the Sony A3000 has 25 focus points. These focus points allow you to capture sharp images. Although the Sony A3000 has more focus points, they are way lower than the advanced cameras out there.

ISO Levels

These cameras have differing ISO levels too. While the Nikon D3200’s ISO levels go up to 12800, the Sony A3000’s ISO level can go up to 16000. As we all know, the ISO levels measure the camera’s sensitivity to light.

When shooting in low light conditions, the Sony A3000 is clearly a better contender because its higher ISO levels allow you to adjust the shutter speed and aperture accordingly.

Burst Rates

If you are looking to capture fast-moving objects or continuous images, then you should go for the Nikon D3200. It has a burst rate of four frames per second, compared to the Sony A3000’s 2.5 frames per second.

Although both of these are lower than other DSLRs out there, the four frames per second in the Nikon D3200 is pretty good for an entry-level camera. However, the 2.5 frames per second in the Sony A3000 do not give you a lot of flexibility.


The Nikon D3200 is a systems camera while the Sony A3000 is a compact camera. The Nikon D3200 thus gives you the ability to change many components such as the lenses, flash, and other accessories while the Sony A3000 is relatively inflexible.


Although both these cameras have in-built autofocus, the Nikon D3200 has a phase detection autofocus feature while the Sony A3000 has contrast-detection autofocus. The Nikon D3200 thus allows you to focus at a faster speed than its competitor.

Modes and Features

The Sony A3000 has several modes and features which help you get the perfect picture. One of them is the built-in optical image stabilization. This detects any vibration in the camera and corrects the optical path, ensuring that any motion blur is not captured.

Another is the built-in HDR mode. This allows you to capture images in HD automatically and thus you are able to shoot high-quality pictures.

Video Capturing

The video capturing is where things get tricky. The Sony A3000 has a video resolution of 1080 x 60 fps compared to Nikon D3200’s 1080 x 30 fps. While that might not be a huge difference because both shoot in HD, in Sony A3000 you are allowed a lot more room to edit later.

Moreover, when it comes to specific features and modes, the Nikon D3200 takes the lead. It has a phase detection autofocus feature for videos, which makes sure that autofocus works fast and the videos are clear and smooth.

Moreover, the Nikon D3200 has a dedicated cinema app, which allows you to capture videos in cinema-quality. On the contrary, the Sony A3000 does not have any of these abilities.

Black camera in a black surface

Most Distinguishing Feature

Perhaps the feature that sets these two cameras apart is their viewfinders. The Nikon D3200 has an optical viewfinder with 95% coverage. The optical viewfinder allows you to save energy and is a lot more flexible.

On the contrary, the Sony A3000 has an electrical viewfinder. It thus has 100% coverage, which means that you can see exactly what you are going to capture and results in very accurate images.

Each having its benefits, the viewfinders are an important distinction for professional photographers. While the electronic viewfinder allows you to see more of the picture, the optical viewfinders have no resolution limits.

When to Use the Sony A3000

The Sony A3000 has features such as higher video resolution, and different modes. All of these features make the Sony A3000 an ideal camera in the following situations.

Street Photography

Street photography involves you moving around a lot and the Sony A3000’s 25 focus points and built-in image stabilization, make sure that you capture smooth and focussed images.

The Sony A3000 has an image resolution of 20 Megapixels which allows you to capture detailed images and its high ISO levels make sure that you can shoot in poorly lit streets as well!


If you are looking for a camera to start with a low budget, then the Sony A3000 should be your choice. While giving you a lot of features, it allows you to save money as compared to its competitor.

When to Use the Nikon D3200

The Nikon D3200’s unique features which include a higher image resolution and great video-making features make it a go-to in these events.

Fashion Photography

If you plan on shooting for fashion and products, then you should go for the Nikon D3200. Its higher image resolution captures detailed images and thus you can capture high-quality shots of your dresses or products.

Also, the higher burst rate allows you to capture many pictures at once which gives you a lot of flexibility in capturing moving effects such as a model in front of a fan.


If you plan on capturing a lot of videos, then you should choose the Nikon D3200. Although a slightly lower video resolution, it more than makes up for it with the phase detection autofocus and cinema mode. It makes sure that all your videos are of top-notch quality.

Which Is the Better Camera

While these cameras have quite comparable features, where one lacks the other shines, the Sony A3000 comes out on top. It gives you a higher video resolution, more focus points, and 100% coverage with its viewfinder.

While the Nikon D3200 is a great choice too, the only advantage it has over the Sony A3000 is its image resolution. This coupled with the fact that the Sony A3000 is priced lower, makes it a better purchase.

The only situation where you might prefer the Nikon D3200 is when you highly prefer the higher image quality, otherwise, you must go for the Sony A3000.


In the Sony A3000 vs Nikon D3200 comparison, the Sony A3000 came out on top. While the Nikon D3200 has a better image resolution, the Sony A3000 surpasses it in all other aspects.

Not just that, the Sony A3000 is the lower-priced option and the one you should go for!