Review: Nikon D3300 Digital SLR


The D3300 is a compact and lightweight entry-level DSLR from Nikon and brings a lot to the table for the budding DSLR photographer. The D3300 is wrapped in a carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic, similar to and introduced in the D5300. This results in a very lightweight, but solidly constructed camera.

When compared with the earlier D3200 model, the new Nikon D3300 show-cases improvements in both bodily construction and built-in features, including ISO range, the sensor and the image processor.

The D3300 is noticeably lighter and smaller than the older D3200, offering greater portability. The only real drawback to this would be for those, like me, who have large hands, as you may find you have a spare finger off the edge of the grip. Even with that minor drawback, the handgrip is still very comfortable, and the controls are easily reached via the thumb and fore-finger. However, you may find yourself delving into the menus more often than you would like as the external controls are generally quite limited.

Image resolution for the D3300 is improved by an updated sensor, maintaining the existing 24.2 megapixel resolution of the earlier D3200. Included with this model, however, is the lack of an optical low-pass filter (OLPF). This allows for an increase in fine detail resolution as found in the D5300 and D5500 higher-end models.

Detail resolution and Image sharpness are both exceptional for this entry-level camera, as is the high ISO performance and dynamic range. Digital images look excellent and print impressively well. Print quality does not suffer even when printing at larger prints sizes and at a wide range of ISOs.

The performance of the D3300 is generally good overall, although the autofocus speed was a little slower than the average consumer-level DSLR. Buffer depth with RAW files was also rather shallow, though that isn't unusual for this class of camera.

For the budding film maker, the D3300 is packed full of features including Full HD video recording at up to 60 frames per second, uncompressed Full HD video output at 30p via HDMI and an external 3.5mm microphone jack.

Overall, the Nikon D3300 does have some minor annoyances, such as the limited external controls and smaller size (at least for me), it is a great starting point for any photographer looking to make the jump into the world of DSLR cameras. The solid build, lighter weight and great image quality all set the standard for a camera that is versatile, affordable and easy to use.

Nikon D3300 Digital SLR Review

Design
Features
Image Quality
Value
Performance
Final Considerations
Pros
  • Great performance for entry-level DSLR
  • High pixel count
  • Good Guide Mode
  • Easy to use
  • Excellent value
  • Full HD video at up to 60p
  • Excellent print quality
Cons
  • LCD is not touch sensitive
  • Fixed position LCD
  • Very few direct controls
  • Moderate levels of image noise
  • No built in Wi-Fi
Overall Score 4.2 great
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Cameras