I have a D5000 after comparing and contrasting to D90. I really like the articulating screen. It helps tremendously with dog and animal portraits, street portraits and street shots of people, and some macro photography of flowers. I'm not terribly familiar with D7000 but I know it has a fixed screen. I would think that choice of camera depends on what you are doing with the images. If photo competition in camera club, D5100 should be perfectly good. If professional, go with D7000, D800 or new full-frame D4.