D90 vs D7100

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Getting a camera is not always an easy task due to the plethora of options available. From the many brands on the market, two choices include Nikon’s D90 and D7100. This article will look into the D90 vs D7100 comparison and help you decide between the two. 

Nikon D90 vs D7100: General Overview

The D90 and D7100 are advanced DSLRs released by Nikon. Although these cameras have been out for some time now, they are equipped with a number of features that Nikon is well known for.

Nikon D90

Nikon D90 Overview

The Nikon D90 was released back in 2008. Although a 14-year-old, it is a great entry-level compact camera

Made with an aluminum alloy body, this camera hosts a 12 megapixels resolution camera which allows you to take good quality pictures. Through its 96% Viewfinder coverage, you can take the most accurate images. 

With an APS-C sensor, and low pass filters, you can capture images in every light. This camera also comes with a three-inch live view fixed screen through which you can navigate around it with ease.

Nikon D7100 Overview

Released in 2013, the Nikon D7100 is one of Nikon’s best works.

It has a magnesium Alloy body which is also a weather shield. It is packed with 24 Megapixel resolution and a shutter speed which can go up to 1/8000 seconds. Its battery can capture 950 shots in one charge and will be with you the whole day.

Its video capabilities are its best part. You can record in 1080 x 30fps. With features such as cinema tools and time-lapse filters, you can capture the most creative videos ever. 

D90 vs D7100 Comparison

After an overview, this comparison will inform you how their features stack up against each other.


The Nikon D90 and D7100 are released by the same brand and therefore are likely to have many similar features. Some of these include:

Nikon D7100
  • Starting off, these cameras have similar-sized sensors. They both sport an APS-C sensor. The size of the sensor determines the quality of the pictures, the dynamic range and is, therefore, the most important feature of a camera.
  • Both these cameras are equipped with a fixed screen. Although neither of them is articulating or has touch features, their size makes it easy for users to navigate around the camera’s options.
  • Moreover, the cameras have a dedicated cinema tool that allows you to capture videos in cinema-quality.
  • These cameras also have an optical viewfinder. As opposed to electronic viewfinders, optical viewfinders are energy efficient and allow a longer battery life.
  • Both the cameras have inbuilt autofocus which is a great aid in capturing pictures without motion blur.
  • If you are looking to attach external tools to your camera, you need a hot-shoe. Both these cameras have one with which you can attach an external flash, viewfinders, etc.
  • Images in both these cameras can be recorded in both JPEG and RAW formats. Also, they come with inbuilt sensor cleaners, which makes your job easier.  


These cameras have a huge gap of five years between their releases. Due to technological advances, they were bound to have many differences. So this is where D90 vs D7100  can be looked into.

Image Resolution

One of the first things people look into a camera is the image resolution. Here, the Nikon D7100 has an image resolution of 24 MP whereas the Nikon D90 has one of 12.9 MP. The image resolution refers to the number of pixels in an image.

A higher image resolution allows you to zoom in on the picture later on while making edits without ruining the quality of the pictures. However, it results in a bigger image size which means your camera might run out of space quicker.

ISO Levels

These cameras have different ISO levels. While in the Nikon D7100, the ISO levels can go up to 25600, in the Nikon D90, the maximum ISO level is 6400. The ISO levels determine the sensor’s sensitivity to light. 

Simply put, higher ISO levels absorb more light and are thus able to capture better images in low light. However, increasing the ISO levels too much might lead to poor image quality.

Man takes a photo with a Nikon D90

Shutter Speed

The Nikon D7100 has a maximum shutter speed of 1/8000s whereas the Nikon D90 has a shutter speed of 1/4000s. The shutter speed determines how fast the camera’s shutter closes.

A fast shutter speed allows you to capture fast-moving objects without blur. On the contrary, a slow shutter speed allows more light into the camera and works well in low light conditions.

Protection and Battery

The Nikon D7100 comes fully protected with a weather shield. This provides it extra defense from harsh weather conditions. On the other hand, the Nikon D90 does not have this feature.

When it comes to battery life, the Nikon D7100 is again the better camera of the two. With a 1900 mAh battery, it can capture 950 shots in one charge. This is high compared to the Nikon D90’s 1500 mAh battery which can capture 850 shots with a full charge.

Viewfinder and Screen

Although both these cameras have an optical viewfinder, the coverage they provide differs. The Nikon D7100 has 100% coverage whereas the D90 has a coverage of 96%. A 100% coverage means that it shows you exactly what the picture will capture

Similarly, both have fixed screens but the Nikon D7100 has a screen size and resolution of 3.2 inches 1228k dots respectively. On the contrary, the Nikon D90 has a screen size of three inches and a resolution of 920k dots. 

These screen features are essential because a bigger screen and higher resolution make navigation around the camera a lot easier and improve the interface.

Focus Points and Continuous Shooting

The Nikon D7100 has a staggering 51 focus points compared to the Nikon D60’s 11. Focus points determine the areas where your camera can focus. A high number of focus points means that your camera is capable of capturing sharp images.

Also, when it comes to capturing continuous shots, the Nikon D7100 again has an upper hand with the ability to capture up to six pictures per second. On the other hand, the Nikon D60 can only capture 4.5 pictures per second. A higher rate is useful in capturing action shots

Most Distinguishing Feature

Most users look for a DSLR which has great image and video taking capabilities. The Nikon D7100 outperforms the D90 by a huge margin here. It has a maximum video resolution of 1080 x 30 fps whereas the Nikon D90 has one of only 720 x 24 fps.

Nikon D7100

A higher video resolution allows you to capture high-quality (HD) videos with better color dynamics. Also, the Nikon D7100 has a time-lapse feature through which you can capture various aesthetic effects. 

When to Use the Nikon D90

If you are someone who has just gotten into the photography field and are looking for a low-cost camera then the Nikon D90 is a good choice. It has a low-price tag along with exhilarating features such as good image quality, cinema tools, etc.

When to Use the Nikon D7100

The Nikon D7100 is the more technologically advanced camera between the two and works best in these situations.

Nightlife Photography

Taking pictures at night can be cumbersome because of poor lighting. The D7100 has features such as in-built flash, high ISO levels, and big sensor size, all of which help you capture images in low light conditions. Hence, the D7100 is ideal for nightlife photography.

Sports Photography

The Nikon D7100 is likely to perform well in sports photography thanks to its maximum shutter speed of 1/8000. This allows you to capture fast-moving objects without motion blur. That combined with a frame rate of six pictures per second, makes capturing sports easier.


If you, like many others, are inspired by vlogging and want to venture into that then the Nikon D7100 is a great choice. It offers HD video resolution which can go up to 1080 x 30fps and features such as cinema and time-lapse. Through this camera, you can make the best vlogs.

Which Camera Is Better?

After reading the article you might have guessed that the Nikon D7100 has superior features in all aspects. It has a higher image resolution, higher shutter speed, better video-making abilities, all of which make it a better camera.

Hence, the D7100 is the better camera because of its excellent features. However, features are not everything. You must look at your budget too. The Nikon D90, although has relatively fewer features, costs much lower.

To rephrase, the D7100 should be your choice if you are not concerned about the price. However, if you are concerned, then go for the Nikon D90.


Both great choices, the D90 vs D7100 debate might have helped you get an idea of which camera to choose. If you are unsure between either of them the features mentioned here are enough for you to identify a good camera. So make a choice and shoot away.