Review: Nikon D5300 Digital SLR

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Review: Nikon D5300 Digital SLR

RecommendedNikon’s D5300 is the company’s DX-format digital SLR camera and also the latest upper entry-level model. The DSLR offers a resolution of 24.2-megapixels and comes packed with the Nikon DX-format CMOS sensor with no optical low-pass filter. Under the hood, the DSLR also comes with EXPEED 4 image-processing engine.

The D5300 is also Nikon’s first digital SLR camera to offer built-in wireless LAN (Wi-Fi) and GPS functions. This means that users will be able to share high-quality images wirelessly to mobile devices. But, do features such as 24-megapixels, a flipout screen, Wi-Fi nd GPS make it the best mid-range DSLR? Let’s find out.

One of the features that stand out is the 24 Megapixel DX format sensor. This offers the same resolution as the D5200, but now with the optical low pass filter removed. Effectively, the new specification now matches that of the D7100 sensor, which essentially means that Nikon now firmly believes that this approach is going to be mainstream.

The D5300 replaces the D5200 – however, in comparison to its predecessor, the D5300 is slightly smaller and lighter. The right-hand grip is deep and therefore quite comfortable for photographers with large hands and/or longish fingers, and there’s also a handy rubberised thumb rest on the back of the body.

The screen of the D5300 though remains fully-articulated. However, you will notice that the panel is now bigger and 3:2 proportioned to match the native shape of images without cropping, rather than the 4:3 screen of the D5200. The DSLR offers 5fps of continuous shooting and the AF system is also unchanged with 39 points / 9 cross-type sensors.

Nikon D5300-2

There however is no AF motor to drive non AF-S lenses. But then, the viewfinder magnification has been boosted a little. Movies can now be recorded at 1080p60/50, and as mentioned earlier, the D5300 becomes the first Nikon DSLR to feature built-in Wi-Fi and GPS. These additions, though have been long overdue, are certainly welcome.

On the right side of the body you’ll find an SD memory card slot that’s compatible with SDXC standard in addition to SD and SDHC. On the left side of the body are four ports behind a large flap. There’s a USB and analogue AV output, a Mini HDMI port, a 3.5mm jack to connect an external microphone and the proprietary accessory terminal.

When it comes to real world tests, the Nikon D5300 produced images of excellent quality. The DSLR also managed to produce noise-free JPEG images at ISO 100-1600, with ISO 3200 also looking pretty good. Only at ISO 6400 did we notice signs of a little noise.

A round of night photography was excellent. We got clear shots even under low-light conditions and as such, red-eye was not a common occurrence with the built-in flash. All in all, we found the camera performance to be exactly the same as it was with the D5200. The D5300 is a fairly responsive camera in daily use.

Nikon D5300-3

Onscreen response to button and dial operation is brisk whether you’re navigating through menu screens, zooming in and out of live view previews or changing shooting parameters. Although the camera has external controls and a shortcut ‘[i]’ menu for commonly changed settings, if you are looking to take more refined control over operation such as enabling distortion control or adjusting Auto ISO parameters, you will have to dive into the main menu system.

The Nikon D5300 was also strong in terms of video recording features. It offers a maximum resolution/frame rate of 1080/60p, as mentioned earlier, and uncompressed HDMI output. Its comes with a built-in stereo microphone that allows for level adjustments, and the camera provides a port for external microphone input, too. Video quality was quite good, too.

If you are on the market for a mid-level digital SLR, but do not want something as pro as the D7100, the D5300 is an excellent option. We can vouch for the image and video quality, and if you are an absolute beginner, you can happily snap away in Auto mode. The built-in Wi-Fi and GPS functionalities are a plus, too. Since the D5300 offers good image quality, great video quality, free-angle screen, and new connectivity options, it is a worthy winner of the Review Central Recommended award.

Price: AED 3999

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