Nikon D5300 DSLR Camera Review

First off, I am not gonna get into the specs and the inner workings of this camera. If you would like a comprehensive look at this camera and how to set it up, there are way better overviews of this camera online. I will make sure to leave you some proper links below.

Secondly, I will give you my own opinions on this camera, why I bought it, is it still a good purchase in 2018, and lastly why you should buy this camera.

Now with that outta the way, here are some key features of this camera:

  • 24 megapixel CMOS sensor
  • The ISO is 100 to 12,800 expanded to 25,600
  • The sensor size is 23.5mm x 15.6mm
  • You can shoot 5 FPS (Frames Per Second)
  • 1080p at 60 FPS
  • Full articulating LCD screen
  • Lightweight at just 480 g or 16.9 oz

Why I bought this Camera:

Why did I buy this camera? Well first off, I started looking for a camera after I had found out the limitations of my iPhone. Before this camera, that is all I used for my photography. I wanted something that would step up my game. Don’t get me wrong, the smartphone has come along way, those cameras are more than capable nowadays. I would still recommend you start with that before jumping in.

To be honest, I was not even looking at the D5300, I was set on the Canon 80D. Simply because that is what everyone used for video. YES! that’s right video, I want to do more video than photography. The 80D had both of what I wanted, the capabilities of exceptional video with the ability to do photography as well. Unfortunately, the 80D was way too far from my budget. The 80D is currently set at $1299 CDN, not something I could easily get.

So I had to make a choice either get something a lot less expensive and not be happy (which mind you, you can get a T5i and still get great results. But know me, would not be satisfied) or choose Video? or Photography? So I chose to be more photo-focused. You’re probably saying, wait, you know you can do video with your D5300 right? And you are right, you can. But it’s not all that’s cracked up to be, continue reading and you know why. Anyways, the D5300 is priced at just $579 CDN so if you are on a budget like me, then this is a no-brainer.

I wanted the ability of an articulating screen still which the 80D had because in my head I was still wanting to do video, so that was a big check mark. I figured the D5300 is not that more expensive than the D3400. Both were relatively the same in specs except a few things here and there like no wifi on the D3400 and the big one, the articulating screen.

I also had heard, read about how Nikon’s was pretty much on top of picture taking (depending where you read or hear) so when I made the decision for picture over video, I decided on the D5300.

Is it still good in 2018?:

The short answer is yes! Of course, it is. I would highly recommend this camera for beginner photographers. That is the sole reason why I bought it. That way you are not investing big money into a camera that you may not enjoy because it’s too “high tech”. I say that once you have mastered the smartphone photography and are comfortable with the manual setting, understand exposure, ISO, aperture, etc. The next step is to a DSLR.

There are hundreds of great tutorials on how to set, work and shoot with this camera. (link below on a great video on that). I think this is a great starter camera for the amateur to the mid-level experienced photographer. Once you have mastered this I would step up to a more advanced DSLR. Like I have learned the limits of this camera pretty quickly through trial and error, tons of YT videos and articles. I now get a sense of what I am looking for when it comes to stepping it up.


Once experienced photographer told me that you should concentrate on buy glass or lens firstly and then updating your body. I have since come to agree with this because as I grow my glass line up you can tell based on them that your body will need upgrading. The kit lens which is an 18-55mm is a good starter zoom lens. I would then definitely look at getting a prime lens say a 35mm or a 50mm with an aperture of 1.8. I have a Yungnuo 50mm lens that I will review on a different post, but that takes awesome pictures with beautiful bokeh (or blurry background) on it. That with my 70-300mm Tamron zoom is a good line up. (Review on that later as well).

My Thoughts, The Pros, and Cons:

Well, let’s start with the pros:

  • Clearly, the price point is just right.
  • Full articulating screen.
  • 24-megapixel sensor.
  • lightweight at just 480g (body only).
  • Full 1080 HD at 60fps.
  • The battery life is definitely awesome. I was able to go a full packed day at Disneyworld (from 8am to around 10pm) before I had to change batteries.
  • fairly ease of use.
  • WiFi is a great feature because you can easily download pictures to your phone edit them with whatever app you use and post them on social media. There have been plenty of times I have done this and it turned out awesome.


  • Well for one it does not have an internal focusing system which would allow you to use the older lens that does not have autofocusing on them. Meaning that if you have the older much cheaper 50mm you would have to use it on manual only.
  • 5fps before buffering. If you are going to take a lot of action shots, you will be able to get them but you will hit the buffer pretty quickly. Meaning that you would have to let it cycle before being able to shoo again, which will make it hard to get the action. So you will definitely have to plan when you will press the shutter. I found this out when taking pictures of my stepdaughters’ soccer games. I went to go take the shoots of her about to score, but because I was quick to press the shutter too soon I missed the important shot because I had hit the buffer. So planning is key.
  • When in live view, I absolutely hate, HATTTTTEEE!! that you cannot change the aperture. You literally have to get out of live view and set it and then switch it back. Making it a bit of a hassle to take video in a run and gun type of situation.
  • If you are manual ISO Fn button on the front of the camera is set to default to that if you want to adjust the ISO a bit of a hassle because although you can change that do another button of your choosing, I have found it to be quite difficult because all the other ones have a good purpose. (If anyone has a better solution do let me know)
  • Not very good for video. What I mean is that the autofocusing on this is not the greatest. It hunts like there is no tomorrow. That being said though if you are good at manually setting focus you can most definitely use it this then. But not all of us are good at that. Since the focusing is solely done by the lens, the sound it makes is terrible. You can, however, get the new AF-P instead of the AF-S, as this is Nikon’s solution to Canon’s STM motor. But I have heard that these aren’t as silent.

Overall I am very satisfied with this camera. It is not the best and it’s not the worst. Really it comes down to you. Like every photographer, I have heard or spoken too says, if you are focusing on what you are using to take your shot, you are not really taking a picture. Don’t stress yourself because you don’t have the baddest camera.

Focus on the art, the enjoyment of being able to create something that is you, your style. Something I can struggle with at times because let’s face it, who doesn’t want the Sony A7r or the Canon 6D or the Nikon d850.


I would love to own all of those but I am just focusing on that, I am missing out on why I started to take pictures in the first place. So no matter what DLSR, or smartphone, point, and shoot, etc you may have, just go out and enjoy taking the beauty around you.

Who Should Buy This Camera:

Anyone can buy this camera LOL. No, but seriously, if you have not gathered it already. Yes, you can shot video but it is extremely annoying. This camera is meant for those that are more focused on photography. As stated above the autofocusing is a big part which is lacking. The noise of the lens motor is atrocious. That being said if your main focus of the video is interview style you can easily get away with this camera because all you need to do is set the focus and your subject does not have to move as much.

I have linked a good YouTube channel that works with a D5200 which is so similar to the D5300 and he shot a music video for a client. He gets in-depth on the settings and how he shot it. So it is possible just really annoying.

Buy the D5300 here:



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Check out this video on setting up the D5300:


Want to know how to Autofocus? Check this video:

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