Nikon D5: Pros And Cons

By Amit Chowdhry ● Dec 3, 2019

  • Are you thinking of buying a Nikon D5? Here are some of the Nikon D5 pros and cons for you to consider before buying it.

The Nikon D5 is a full-frame high-quality professional DSLR that Nikon released in January 2016 as a successor to the Nikon D4S as its flagship DSLR. The D5 has several improvements like an updated image sensor and image processor. Plus Nikon drastically upgraded the ergonomics and ISO range. Here is an overview of the Nikon D5 pros and cons that you should know about:

Pro: Ergonomic Design

The Mode, Bracket, and Metering keys are located on the control cluster on the Nikon D5. And the dial below enables you to easily change shooting modes. With this option, you can find the Continuous High (CH) mode to set up 12 fps burst shooting.

By the shutter button on the right, you can set up movie recording and exposure along with making ISO adjustments.

The Nikon D5 also has an integrated vertical grip. And it has a double-grip chassis that makes holding the camera much more comfortable.

Pro: Solid Battery

Inside of the Nikon D5 is an EN-EL18a lithium-ion battery. This battery is CIPA-rated at 3,780 shots.

Pro: Touchscreen

The Nikon D5 has a responsive touchscreen that works very well. But you can disable it from the settings if you prefer not to use it. With the touchscreen, you can quickly swipe between images and also pinch-to-zoom.

Pro: 153-Point Autofocus System

The 153-point autofocus system is one of the best features in the Nikon D5. This is a huge jump from the 51-point autofocus system in the Nikon D4S. And of the 153-point autofocus system, 99 are cross-type.

The Nikon D5 supports single-point, single-shot AF and advanced continuous AF with 3D tracking. Plus it can be tuned to take still-life shots and high-speed sports photography.

Pro: Two Configurations

The D5 features two configurations with two XQD or two CompactFlash card slots. I would recommend that you go with two XQDs.

Pro: USB 3 And Ethernet Port

Built into the Nikon D5 is a USB 3 port and an Ethernet port. This makes it easier to transfer and upload photos.

Pro: Durability

The Nikon D5 was built to withstand dust and moisture. And the shutter has been rated at 400,000 cycles.

Pro: 4K Video And HDMI Output

The Nikon D5 supports 4K video quality and it has HDMI output. This ensures that video that is taken with the camera looks sharp and colorful.  Here is an example of 4K footage that was taken with the D5:

Con: Premium Pricing

The Nikon D5 has a list price of $6,499.95. However, you can find deals for the Nikon D5 for below $6,000 at several retailers. So this camera was made for consumers who do not have tighter budgets.

Con: No Wi-Fi or Bluetooth

The Nikon D5 lacks Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, which is not surprising since the Canon 1D X Mark II does not have these features either. This is unfortunate considering the retail price. However, you can wirelessly send files by getting a WT-6A transmitter:

Nikon D5 Specifications

Effective Pixels: 20.8 million pixels

Sensor Size: 35.9 mm x 23.9 mm

Image Sensor Format: FX

Storage Media: CompactFlash (CF) (Type I, compliant with UDMA) / XQD Type Memory

Ports: USB 3 and Ethernet

Top Continuous Shooting Speed at Full Resolution: 12 frames per second / 14  frames per second with mirror up

ISO Sensitivity: ISO  100 – 102,400

Movie: 4K UHD 3,840×2,160 @ 24/25/30 fps; Full HD 1,920×1,080 @ 24/25/30/50/60 fps; HD 1,280×720 @ 50/60 fps

Monitor Size: 3.2-inch diagonal

Monitor Type: Wide Viewing Angle Touch TFT-LCD

Battery: EN-EL18a lithium-ion battery

Dimensions: 6.3-inch height (158.5mm) x 6.3-inch wide (158.5mm)

Weight: 3.11 pounds

Included In The Box: D5, EN-EL1a battery, charger, USB and HDMI cable, eyepiece adapter, and caps.

Pulse 2.0 Score

The Nikon D5 has received a Pulse 2.0 score of 4.5 out of 5. If the Nikon D5 had Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS technology built-in, then the score would have been higher.

You can buy the Nikon D5 from here:

And here are some compatible lenses:

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