Like Canon SLRs, Nikon SLRs are divided into two camps depending upon their sensor size, full-frame or APS-C format.
Full-frame cameras, referred to as FX models by Nikon, have sensors that are the same size as a 35mm film frame (36x24mm). Meanwhile, whereas APS-C format or DX cameras have a sensor that at 23.5x15.6mm is a little smaller.
Full-frame cameras bring the advantage of allowing the photo receptors (AKA pixels) to be larger than on APS-C format sensors and this means that they have greater light-gathering power, which is good news for image quality. The larger sensors also make it easier to control depth of field for creative effects and background blur.
While full-frame D-SLRs used to be the preserve of professional photographers, there are now models such as the Nikon D610 and D750 which are aimed at enthusiast photographers.
In the past Nikon has produced pro-grade DX format cameras, but it hasn't launched a high-end model since the D300s, nearly five years ago. More recent DX format camera introductions have been aimed at novice and enthusiast photographers.
We have our own ideas about a possible D300s replacement, called the Nikon D400 – see our Camera Rumors 2015 story – but it remains to be seen whether this will actually happen.
DX camera bodies are less expensive to buy than FX cameras, yet Nikon still manages to shoehorn a wealth of advanced features into their typically compact build. And, because the image circle required by an APS-C format sensor is smaller than that of a full-frame camera, wide-angle and standard zoom lenses also tend to be physically smaller and more travel-friendly.
Enthusiast sport and wildlife photographers often favour DX format cameras because a relatively compact 70-300mm zoom lens gives nearly as much 'effective' reach as a much bigger and heavier super-telephoto lens, like a 150-500mm optic on a full-frame body.
From entry-level, beginner-friendly bodies to exotic, powerful cameras aimed at professional photographers, there are some great models to choose from in the current Nikon DSLR range. This article is designed to help you find the best one for you.
To read full reviews of the Nikon SLRs currently on sale follow the links below: