The Nikon D60 is an entry-level 10.2 Megapixel DSLR aimed at general consumers who are typically upgrading from a point and shoot or film camera. Announced in January 2008, it comes 10 months after its predecessor the D40x. The new D60 isn’t a world apart from the D40x, with Nikon instead opting for a number of minor upgrades rather than anything ground-breaking.
The D60 shares the same 10.2 Megapixel sensor and 2.5in screen as its predecessor, along with virtually the same body and controls. New to the D60 are a stop-motion recording mode, eye sensors which switch the screen off when you’re looking through the viewfinder, Active D-Lighting for preserving details in bright highlights and dark shadow areas, and an anti-dust system which both vibrates the low pass filter along with using Nikon’s new airflow system to channel particles from the image path.
Arguably the biggest difference is the option to buy the D60 in a kit with an affordable stabilised kit lens. The new Nikkor DX 18-55mm VR has been redesigned optically and allows you to handhold at shutter speeds three times slower than normal, while still offering quick and quiet focusing – impressive for a budget kit lens. Buyers of the D60 should however note it is also available in a bundle with the older non-VR lens; we’d recommend paying the extra for the version with VR.
By sharing the same core specification as the earlier D40x though, the D60 also inherits its downsides. So the basic 3-point AF system remains the same as does the reliance on lenses with built in motors for autofocus. With the same sensor and optical path, there’s also no Live View.
But the D60 does have its predecessor’s ease of use and almost foolproof metering, which along with the new stabilised kit lens, makes it an ideal option for anyone buying their first DSLR. It does however come up against tough competition, sandwiched between Nikon’s own compelling D40 and D80 models and pitched head-on against Canon’s best-selling EOS 400D / XTi.
In our Nikon D60 full review, we’ll take a detailed look at all its new features and how they work in practice, along with comparing its quality and capabilities against key rivals. And as always, we have a demonstration of the key features in our Nikon D60 video tour. So read on to find out if the D60 is the ideal DSLR for you.
Note: due to similarities with its predecessor, some of the following sections are based on our earlier Nikon D40x review and updated where there’s differences. Our results, gallery and verdict pages, along with the video tour are of course completely new though.
We tested a final production Nikon D60, running firmware version 1.00. Following our convention of using default factory and best quality JPEG settings to test camera bodies unless otherwise stated, the D60 was set to Large Fine JPEG mode and sRGB, with Auto White Balance, 3D Matrix metering and the Optimise Image parameter set to Normal for sharpening, tone, colour, saturation and hue; Noise Reduction and Active D-Lighting were set to their default Off settings. All the images in this review were taken with the Nikkor DX 18-55mm VR lens with VR enabled for handheld shots and disabled for tripod-based tests.