The camera turns on quickly, following a burst of the sensor cleaner, it’s ready to go within a second (Nikon quotes 019sec) and the shutter release button is very responsive. In auto mode and program, the camera will do everything for you. In the PASM modes, a rear command dial lets you change the settings easily.
Other than the new shooting info screen, the menus follow Nikon’s traditional path over a series of easy to follow sub-menus and a variety of customisable functions let you set up the camera to the way you want it, be it operational controls or image settings. This is the beauty of entry-level cameras, they can be used straight from the box and many people will keep it that way, while those with more experience, ior those that wish to progress can do.
Pictures from the D60 impress, with a lovely smooth tonality and crisp punchy colours. Contrast is generally good, while the Active D-Lighting quickly takes care of those that need a little help to achieve their best. Exposures are generally good, though occasionally the camera underexposes by a quarter to half a stop, especially if there’s a lot of brightness in the image such as a bright sky. This can easily be monitored if you use the histogram function in playback to check your shots, while shooting in Raw format easily lets you correct them without sacrificing quality.
A particularly impressive aspect is the cameras noise control at high sensitivity, with a top ISO of ISO3200 the camera is good for low light, and noise even at this level is well controlled, especially considering the normally gritty look that is common to CCD sensors rather than CMOS. This is down to the Expeed processor, which does such a good job on the D300 and D3.
I can’t say this is my favourite of Nikon’s cameras, the auto focus in particular is lacklustre, and there are a few niggles, such as the odd patch of underexposure. Overall though it’s a good entry level model, which is easy and straightforward to use, with plenty more features under the hood to progress and improve your photography.