Nikon D3300 Review
One of the biggest camera announcements at 2014's Consumer Electronics Show may well have been the little Nikon D3300 and its collapsible 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 VR II lens. It may not shoot 4K video or offer a curved LCD (those shows are all about the tech trends) but it does represent the next generation of Nikon's very popular entry-level DSLR line, and that in itself is noteworthy.
The D3300 sits at the bottom of Nikon's entry-level series, positioned as the friendliest of beginner-friendly DSLRs, just below the D5300. Don't be fooled by their class bearing though, both cameras use a powerful 24MP APS-C sensor. Opting for the D3300 rather than the D5300 means living with a fixed 3.0-inch LCD, rather than one that's fully articulated, and no built-in Wi-Fi.
Nikon D3300 key features
- 24.2 MP DX format (APS-C) sensor
- Expeed 4 processor
- Fixed 3.0" 921k-dot LCD
- 1080/60p HD video
- 5 fps continuous shooting
- 700 shot battery life
The D3300's Expeed 4 branded processor is responsible for many of its gains over the previous model, the D3200. This model gets an upgrade to 1080/60p video recording, an extra frame per second in burst mode, and a higher ISO range up to 12800 (25600 with expansion).
The table below illustrates the differences between this model, its predecessor, and the step-up model. It should be noted that the D3300 appears to give better battery performance than the D5300, but actually they use the same EN-EL14a battery. The D5300's lower claimed battery life reflects a calculation for use of the camera's built-in Wi-Fi and GPS. By any measure, the D3300 is well above its peers in terms of battery capacity.
|Nikon D3300||Nikon D3200||Nikon D5300|
|Sensor||24.2 MP DX format CMOS (23.5 x 15.6 mm)||24.2 MP DX format CMOS (23.2 x 15.4 mm)||24.2 MP DX format CMOS (23.5 x 15.6 mm)|
|Image processing||Expeed 4||Expeed 3||Expeed 4|
|LCD||Fixed 3.0" 921k-dot LCD||Fixed 3.0" 921k-dot LCD||Vari-angle 3.2" 1037k-dot LCD|
|AF system||11-point (1 cross-type)||11-point (1 cross-type)||39-point (9 cross-type)|
|Viewfinder||0.85x (95% coverage)||0.80x (95% coverage)||0.82x (95% coverage)|
|ISO range||100-12800 (expansion to 25600)||100-6400 (expansion to 12800)||100-12800 (expansion to 25600)|
|Connectivity||With optional WU-1a Mobile Adapter||With optional WU-1a Mobile Adapter||Built-in|
|Video capture max. resolution||1080 60p||1080 30p||1080 60p|
|Continuous shooting||5 fps||4 fps||5 fps|
|Battery life||700 shots||540 shots||600 shots|
|Dimensions||124 x 98 x 76 mm (4.88 x 3.86 x 2.99″)||125 x 96 x 77 mm (4.92 x 3.78 x 3.03″)||125 x 98 x 76 mm (4.92 x 3.86 x 2.99″)|
|Weight||460 g (16.23 oz)||505 g (17.81 oz)||530 g (18.70 oz)|
Moving up the chain of Nikon's crop-frame DSLR line AF systems get increasingly sophisticated. The D3300 sits at the very bottom with an 11-point system and a single cross-type sensor at the middle - nothing that would tempt a sports photographer, but perfectly capable for its class. Outside of this, Wi-Fi and a vari-angle screen are the only other clear hardware advantages to the D5300 over the entry-level model.
The comparison paints a picture of a nicely specified entry-level model with excellent battery life, a new processor and a whole lot of resolution. Aside from the lack of Wi-Fi, there's not much to complain about here and we don't feel that there's anything that this camera is seriously lacking feature-wise.
However, the days when an entry-level Nikon only really had to worry about its latest rival from Canon have gone. So, although the D3300's specs are very impressive - especially in terms of battery life - it also has to hold its own against the smaller mirrorless cameras that match it for image quality and offer a more compact-camera-like live view shooting experience.
Though a little long in the tooth, the Panasonic Lumix GF6 offers a tilting touch screen, and the Olympus E-PM2 provides a fixed touch screen (and is a steal price-wise compared to the rest of the class). Elsewhere in the category the Pentax K-500 offers a 100% coverage optical viewfinder and 6 fps burst shooting, while the Fujifilm X-A1 offers twin command dials and built-in Wi-Fi.
Kit options and pricing
The Nikon D3300 is available in black, grey and red variants, kitted in the US and UK with a collapsible 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 VR II lens with list prices of $649.95 and £599.99, respectively. In the UK there's also a £499.99 body-only option, not offered in the US.
Without the D5300's built-in Wi-Fi, D3300 owners will need to add Nikon's WU-1a mobile adapter for connectivity features. The adapter dangles from the camera's AV port, making it possible to wirelessly transfer images to an Android or iOS device. Read more about it in our review of the Nikon D3200. It's available separately for $59.95/£54.99.
Nikon's DSLRs aren't by any means the cheapest in their respective classes, and that's true of the D3300. It's about $100 US more than a comparable Canon kit, and costs well over twice as much as the (very aggresively priced) Sony a3000. For that premium, you get one of the highest resolution APS-C sensors on the market, a very good 1080/60p video spec, and exceptional battery life among other things. It's slightly pricier, but does the feature set justify the tag? Or would your entry-level dollars be better spent elsewhere?
|Colorful Boats by gongal|
from Fujifilm Challenge
|Physallis in a sun beam.. by baobob|
from It's a setup.
|Portal at second beach by Ferpect|
from Seven ways to shoot a landscape: Seascape
EIZO has released an updated version of its display calibration program ColorNavigator 7 that brings along new features and support.
An incredibly rare contact sheet from the last known photo shoot of Marilyn Monroe has appeared on eBay for $195,000.
After teasing it last autumn, DJI has announced the pricing and availability of the optional Multilink accessory for its Inspire 2 and Cendence controllers
The Live Planet VR System is an all-in-one package designed to simplify the process of creating, storing and sharing immersive video content on-demand with a high-powered 16-camera array at the center of the platform.
Samsung's latest image sensor offers a high pixel count in a tiny package.
Meike has released a budget 50mm lens for Canon and Nikon's full-frame mirrorless camera systems.
One of three lenses launched alongside the Nikon Z6 and Z7, on the face of it the Z 50mm F1.8 S might appear the most pedestrian of the group, but it might just be the niftiest fifty we've ever seen.
Panoram is a simple app that makes it easy to split up panoramas so it's easier to post on Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat 'Stories.'
News results from Google might be missing a few images if a new EU Copyright Directive passes.
Professional commercial photographer Moe Lauchert shares an incredible gallery of film photographs he captured on Ilford HP5 with a Nikonos 5 while serving as a diver at NASA's Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory in Houston, Texas.
This week, Sony introduced its newest APS-C camera, the a6400. Of course, Chris and Jordan were on hand to take it for a spin and test out all the new features.
The Sony a6400 is, in many ways, just a refreshed a6300, but its overhauled AF system makes a big difference. We look at how it compares with its rivals in and beyond the E-mount system.
Glove and Boots take a humorous look into the history of photographs and how far technology has come since the days of caveman hand selfies.
We've been shooting with a beta version of the Sony a9's upcoming firmware 5.0. While there's much more analysis to come, we can say it makes for a dead simple AF tracking user experience. Take a look at some of our samples.
A statement following internal investigation by DJI alleges a number of employee were part of an internal corruption scandal that overcharged DJI for parts and materials.
Astrophotography fans will be treated to the sight a rare super blood wolf Moon this weekend, and lots of helpful people are offering advice on how best to photograph it.
Accessory maker K&F Concept is offering a range of adapters, allowing the use of non-Nikon as well as Nikon F lenses on the new Nikon Z mirrorless cameras.
Lens maker Tamron has confirmed that new firmware issued at the end of last year to make certain lenses compatible with Nikon’s Z7 camera will also work for owners of the Z6.
NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has captured a photo of Earth that's being compared to the iconic 'Pale Blue Dot' captured by the Voyager 1 space probe in 1990.
GoPro has updated its Fusion ecosystem with new firmware for the Fusion camera and updates to the Fusion Studio software as well as the Adobe Premiere and After Effects plug-ins.
The Tamron 17-35mm F2.8-4 is a compact and light-weight lens for full-frame Canon and Nikon DSLRs. We took it on grand tour of Seattle's top tourist spots and found it makes a pleasant, albeit wide, walking around lens.
Olympus has published the third teaser video for its upcoming sports-oriented mirrorless camera, due for release next week.
Fujifilm has announced its new GF 100-200mm F5.6 R LM OIS WR tele-zoom lens. The lens, equivalent to 79-158mm when mounted on a GFX camera, has image stabilization (with a claimed 5 stops of shake reduction), a linear AF motor and weather-sealing.
Amongst all of the camera news yesterday, Sony also announced its new Imaging Edge mobile app, which replaces PlayMemories Mobile. Three desktop applications have also been updated, adding support for time-lapse movie creation.
We've been busy shooting with Sony's newest mirrorless camera, the mid-range a6400. Have a look at our initial samples.
Adobe has taken the new year as an opportunity to introduce an updated Behance with improved user profiles and more prominent project pages.
OPPO's 5x zoom prototype never made it into a production unit but now the company is about to release an even longer optical zoom for smartphones.
Our intrepid team is in San Diego, for the launch of the new Sony a6400. In this short overview video, Carey, Chris and Jordan talk through the main specifications of the new camera, and what they might mean for photographers and videographers.
After further testing, Sigma has updated its lens compatibility notice to highlight what lenses work with Canon's EOS R full-frame mirrorless camera.