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Nikon D5000: The 720p dSLR you can afford

Nikon has just announced the D5000 -- a decent-looking entry-level dSLR, with 720p HD video recording and a swivelling LCD display

Nate Lanxon
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Nikon's D90 brought 720p HD video recording to the world of dSLR cameras last October, grabbing a CNET UK Editors' Choice award in the process. Now you can snag a similar feature set with Nikon's just-announced D5000 -- a mid-level 12.3-megapixel consumer dSLR, featuring HD video recording, Live View and HDMI output.

Our camera expert Rich Trenholm is with Nikon as we speak, almost certainly getting some face time with the D5000, so expect a hands-on report later today.

Features he'll be checking out include the aforementioned HD video recording, ISO sensitivities between 200 and 3,200, the same CMOS as used by the D90 (in place of the CCDs used in previous entry-level models), and a 69mm (2.7-inch) swivelling LCD display.

You'd be a fool, however -- a grade-A lummox, no less -- to think this will replace any half-decent HD camcorder. For one thing, monaural audio is no friend of the professional, and compressing video as Motion-JPEG files is just annoying -- it'll require conversion to a format suitable for video editing.

If you're after professional HD video recording as well as professional image capture, stop looking at £719 cameras, which is what this is (or £799 with a lens). Check back with us later today for a full hands-on, and hit up some photos in the gallery above while you wait.

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