Quick Review: Nikon D3100 for Dummies

Jumping into photography with a DSLR camera with minimal to no knowledge about photography in general can be very daunting. There are lots of buttons and settings on these camera’s and although they do take very nice pictures in Auto mode its a shame to not use the camera to its full potential. All the buttons and nobs along with setting values like Aperture, Shutter Speed and ISO can be hard to wrap your head around and frustrate you to no end without a clear explanation.

Nikon D3100 for Dummies explains all this in easy to understand layman’s terms that doesn’t require any previous knowledge of photography. The book starts off very basic explaining how to attach a lens to the camera body and going through what each button is called and its basic function. Then it moves to the menus and options that you can access with the camera through its screen. It continues like this with the more basic settings until you are shooting pictures and feeling comfortable with the automatic settings.

With a lot of details and examples the book gradually explains to you semi automatic and then manual shooting. Since everything is given to you in bite sized pieces a little at a time building on top of the core knowledge you have already gained, learning feels very natural and is easy to understand. In the case of aperture, shutter speed and ISO all three of these options control the way light hits the sensor of the DSLR camera. These three values need to be balanced correctly to achieve great results. The author explains this and how each one should be used in a very easy to grasp way that I had not been able to find anywhere else. This can be one of the hardest things to grasp when moving away from taking snapshots to actual pictures.

The book then continues with all the photo editing you can do within the camera itself. This I was less interested in as I will be doing most of my photo editing on the computer, not the camera. But I was astounded at how much editing the camera is capable of doing on its own.

Nikon D3100 for Dummies flows very well and is clearly designed for someone who is new to photography and DSLR cameras. If you just got your D3100 and dont know too much about photography this should be your first step to getting started.