photo by BraunS via iStock
The Nikon D500 is a super-fast DSLR camera, ideal for those interested in any kind of action photography, such as sports or wildlife.
While it will produce the best results if you use it for this purpose, the D500 is also good for any other type of photography. Overall, it is one of the best all-round camera models on the market even though it is already three years old.
In this review, we will cover all the features and capabilities of the Nikon D500 so you can decide if this is the right camera for you.
Nikon D500 Specs
The Nikon D500 sports a 24.3MP X Trans CMOS III APS C sensor with no low pass filter along with X Processor Pro. Because of its large individual pixels, the camera works great in low-light conditions and it will produce images without noise even at high ISO settings. It has a native sensitivity range that goes from ISO 100 to 51200. With expansion settings, you can shoot up to ISO 1,640,000.
While full-frame cameras usually provide better image quality than APS-C cameras, they are also bulkier and less portable. The APS-C sensor is well suited for the Nikon D500 since it is aimed at those who will mostly work out of the studio.
Now, what makes this camera so good for action photography? First of all, it is because of its outstanding autofocus system. The camera has 153-point AF and 99 cross-type AF points. Its central AF point is sensitive down to -4EV which means that it can acquire focus even if there is not much light around.
What is most important is that its autofocus system is very fast and precise. Whether you are shooting flying birds or 100m running race, the Nikon D500 keeps the focus on the target. You can also specify whether the target is steady or it’s moving very fast and the D500 will figure out what is the best way to lock it.
The camera has a continuous shooting speed of 10 frames per second in AF-C autofocus mode which is another thing that makes it perfect for shooting moving targets.
You don’t have to worry a lot about card failure or full storage since it has a dual card slot (SD/SDHC/SDXC + XQD). Finally, the D500 has a 1,240-shot battery life which is really impressive and very practical for professional photographers.
Learn more about the Nikon D500 in the video above by TheCameraStoreTV.
Nikon D500 Features
The Nikon D500 weighs around 1.90 lb and measures 5.79 x 4.53 x 3.19 inches. It is a bit heavier than an average DSLR model, but it provides a lot of professional features packed in a strong body, so this size and weight are actually reasonable.
The LCD screen measures 3.2 inches and it has a resolution of 2,359,000 dots. A good thing is that the display is tiltable and touchscreen sensitive. This is very useful for repositioning the autofocus area or shooting images from different angles. Additionally, you can also use an optical pentaprism viewfinder which provides a 100 percent field of view.
The D500 also features a top LCD screen which is convenient for checking the camera’s settings.
There are many options available for connecting this camera to other digital devices since it has USB 3.0 Micro-B connector as well as Bluetooth, NFC and Wi-Fi technologies.
Nikon D500 Build and Handling
Magnesium alloy and carbon fiber materials should make sure that your camera lasts for years, while dust and water-drop resistance allows you to use it even in the extreme weather conditions.
Overall, this camera has a very nice ergonomics. The grip feels comfortable, buttons are reasonably positioned and everything seems very intuitive. The mini-joystick for selecting AF points is in the reach of the hand and easy to use even if you are using a viewfinder.
Nikon D500 Video Performance
Most of the DSLR cameras can’t shoot 4K videos, but this is not the case with the Nikon D500. This camera shoots 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) video at 24p/25p/30p, with a time limit of 30 minutes. Unfortunately, there is a huge 1.5x crop in addition to the 1.5x crop of the APS-C sensor.
Additionally, the Nikon D500 records Full HD video at 60p, it has both a microphone and headphone jacks, while it also offers clean uncompressed HDMI out (UHD 4:2:2). These are the basic grounds for a good video recording experience, but the camera is not as brilliant in this category as it is in taking stills.
Nikon D500 Lenses
The D500 uses the Nikon F lens mount. This allows you to use thousands of different lenses that already exist on the market.
It is worth mentioning that there is not such a thing as good and bad lenses. Every photographer should choose lenses that are in tune with his style of photography. However, you might want to use faster ones on the Nikon D500 in order to speed it up even more.
Nikon D500 Price
The Nikon D500 costs around $1,496.95 and if you ask me, it is worth every penny. Although it doesn’t seem like a cheap price, in the hands of the right photographer, it can easily make this amount of money in a few hours.
A good thing is that this camera is already three years old and many people are selling it in order to get a newer camera. Check out MPB, a website which specializes in selling used photography equipment. At the moment, there you can find a used Nikon D500 in a good condition for the price as low as $994.00.