Nikon D5300 Review

The Nikon D5200 was, and still is, a successful upper entry-level DSLR that offers an appealing combination of a solid imaging specification with good build quality at a price that keeps it in reach of entry-level upgraders. The D5300 looks to further expand the feature-set with the new addition of Wi-fi functionality, as well as a newly developed sensor and several other tweaks. With the D5200 impressing so much, the question is whether the D5300 improvements will be particularly keenly felt. Let’s take a closer look and see if we can find out.

Nikon D5300 Review

Nikon D5300: Features

Although the Nikon D5300 does feature some eye-catching areas of improvement, it shares a lot its specification with its predecessor.

For example, it features the same 39-point AF system as seen in the D5200, a system that utilises the Multi-CAM 4800DX AF sensor module. This set-up incorporates nine cross-type AF points which, thanks to 3D focus tracking, should cope well with moving subjects. A further improvement could have been made via the adoption of the D7100’s 51-point AF system, although the 39-point AF system is certainly in line with competing DSLRs.

The D5300 also features the same EXPEED 4 image processing engine, although the lack of development here isn’t particularly surprising owing to the fact that the D5200 was one of the first Nikon DSLRs to feature the newly developed processor. As a result of it featuring the same processor, the D5300 maintains the same headline continuous shooting rate of 5fps.

The D5300 also relies upon Nikon’s trusty 2016-pixel metering set-up, which is paired with Nikon’s Scene Recognition System to ensure even exposures in a variety of shooting conditions. So far, so similar, although when you look towards the camera’s connectivity you’ll notice some major improvements. Where it was previously the case that you would have to purchase a separate adapter to give the D5200 Wi-Fi functionality, the D5300 now features an in-built Wi-Fi receiver. As a result you can wirelessly transfer images from the camera to a smartphone or tablet, as well as control the camera wirelessly using the free app.

The D5300's sensor is another area that sees improvements, as although it features the same 24.2MP resolution – as well as retaining the APS-C dimensions – the sensor itself sees the removal of its anti-alias filter. As a result, the D5300 should deliver even better levels of sharpness and clarity in comparison to its predecessor. This new sensor also features a larger ISO range, covering 100-12800 as opposed to 100-6400.

Finally, the Nikon D5300 features an improved LCD screen, which now measures in at 3.2-inches and boasts a resolution of 1037k-dots. One noticeable oversight, and one that could really count against it, is that the screen is still lacking in touchscreen functionality.

Design

On the whole the D5300 continues the design trend of the D5000 series, being slightly larger than the standard entry-level models yet smaller than the D7100, for example. It’s not a total doppelganger for its predecessor, however, as the D5300 feels slightly more compact than the D5200 thanks to a more angular body.

Thanks to the fact that the D5300 has a larger screen than the D5200 there’s less real estate on the back of the camera. As a result the buttons below the screen are a touch smaller than before, but this isn’t to the great detriment of the feel of the camera. In fact, Nikon has repositioned both the d-pad controls and the playback button to incorporate a new larger thumb rest, and as a result the camera actually handles better than before.

One feature that was absent on the D5200 and is still missing from the D5300 is a secondary command dial. Although more high-end Nikon models have this feature as standard, it’s possible that space constraints have led to its omission on the Nikon D5000 series to date. As a result, if you want to change secondary shooting controls, such as aperture in manual mode, you’ll have to make do with a combination of the exposure compensation button and the rear scroll dial.

Although this isn’t the most difficult combination, it would be much better if you had a secondary command dial and this is a feature that several competing models boast.

The D5300 feels solid in the hand thanks to good build quality, and despite not feeling any less robust than its predecessor it’s some 20g lighter.

Performance

The general level of performance, as you’d expect from a camera that inherits a lot of its functionality and specification from the Nikon D5200, is impressive. The focus system offers a good number of AF points which themselves offer a good range of coverage across the frame, something which can’t always be said of competing DSLRs. This level of coverage results in some impressive focusing speeds, although there is a slight tendency to slow in low lighting conditions. That being said, the 3D-tracking mode is a highlight, managing to maintain sharp images throughout a continuous burst of images.

One area in which AF performance is a touch disappointing is if you’re shooting in Live View. Owing to the fact that the D5300 relies upon contrast detect AF for live view, and thus has to flip the mirror out of the way to lock focus, the whole process is sluggish and somewhat disappointing.

In terms of shot-to-shot speed the D5300 delivers exactly the same level of performance as seen on the camera’s predecessor. The claimed maximum burst rate of 5fps can be achieved for an unlimited number of frames if you’re shooting just JPEG files, although if you choose to shoot Raw JPEG the burst depth is limited to six frames. The shot-to-shot delay is negligible in regular shooting, with the D5300 proving to be a fairly swift operator, in general.

It’s certainly welcome that Nikon has installed Wi-Fi connectivity to the D5300, doing away with the need to buy a mobile adapter that costs around £50. The Wi-Fi system, and accompanying app, is very well suited to reviewing and transferring images already captured on the camera. When reviewing images you’re given the option to store them to your device, as well as an option of different sizes at which you can save them.

Unfortunately, the wireless camera control aspect of the app is something of a letdown. Unlike some other manufacturer apps, the Nikon Wireless Mobile Utility app doesn’t allow for camera settings to be altered. Instead you have to with controlling autofocus and the shutter release, although for the rest of the functionality you have to physically adjust the harga kamera nikon.

Nikon D5300 Review

Pros
Built-in Wi-fi addition
Good build quality
Decent continuous shooting rate

Cons
Built-in 2.5mm mic socket
App performance is disappointing with Wi-Fi
Disappointing kit lens
Lacking in live view app previews

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Nikon D5300 Review | Victoria Knight | 5