The Nikon D3300 is an entry-level DSLR with an impressive spec list, including a 24-megapixel sensor and 1080/60p HD video recording. It provides the right level of controls for a beginner, offers a number of in-camera retouch options, and boasts excellent battery life. A beginner specifically looking for a DSLR experience who may want to eventually take a little control over shooting settings.

The Nikon D3300 is a solid entry-level DSLR camera, in more ways than one. It has a solid build quality and solid image quality. Its autofocus performance is a little below average. Limited external controls plus a smaller size may be a turn-off for some photographers.

Nikon D3300 excels in most areas. Ready to make the jump to the best beginner DSLR camera? The Nikon D3300 is the real deal.  This beginner camera provides a nice starting point with a great combination of image quality. It is also easy to use, and the price is pocket-friendly.

Check Out: Best Lenses for Nikon D3300

Nikon D3300: Handling and Build

From the outset, the Nikon D3300 is a new DSLR camera. It comes with a basic control layout that is almost unchanged from its predecessor. Nikon D3300 sports a brand-new body incorporating carbon fiber. The camera is built slightly smaller with a design offering better ergonomics. This reduction in size comes in at 0.1inch in width, and 0.2 inches in depth.

This lightweight and compact entry-level DSLR from Nikon brings a lot to the table for any budding DSLR photographer. Another significant upgrade over the previous D3200, the new Nikon D3300 offers improvements in both body construction and under-the-hood features. It also includes the sensor, the image processor, and the ISO range.

Nikon D3300: Autofocus

Performance is good overall for this entry-level class of cameras.  Autofocus speed for Nikon D3300 is a bit slower than the average beginner DSLR. It suffers a lot in low-light situations. Buffer depth with RAW files is shallow too. For an entry-level class of camera, JPEG buffer performance is much better.

Nikon D3300: Image Quality

The picture quality of this entry-level camera is top-notch for its class. Images are sharp, and detail resolutions are both magnificent for Nikon D3300. The camera has high ISO performance and dynamic range. This matches well with experience with Nikon’s other recently released 24MP DSLR APS-C cameras.

Digital images from Nikon D3300 look excellent with impressive print quality. Get large prints sizes at a wide range of ISOs.

Nikon D3300: Video Quality

For videographers, the Nikon D3300 feels decidedly a non-entry-level. This small DSLR features Full HD video recording up to 60fps. It comes with a 3.5mm external microphone jack. You enjoy the ability to output clean, uncompressed Full HD 30p video via HDMI. This feature used to be a reserve for higher-end, if not pro-level cameras.

Live View AF, including during video recording, leaves a lot to desired for Nikon D3300. It’s quite sluggish. The aperture for this best beginner camera cannot be adjusted while in Live View. Users find this awkward and frustrating at times.

Nikon D3300: Specifications

MSRPBody w/18-55mm F3.5-5.6G VR II lens ($649.95)
Body typeCompact SLR
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Other resolutions4512 x 3000, 3008 x 2000
Image ratio w:h3:2
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors25 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorExpeed 4
ISOAuto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 25600 (with boost)
Boosted ISO (maximum)25600
White balance presets12
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsFine, Normal, Basic
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Digital zoomNo
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points11
Lens mountNikon F
Focal length multiplier1.5×
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3″
Screen dots921,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeTFT LCD (160 degree viewing angle)
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeOptical (pentamirror)
Viewfinder coverage95%
Viewfinder magnification0.85× (0.57× 35mm equiv.)
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Aperture priorityYes
Shutter priorityYes
Manual exposure modeYes
Subject / scene modesYes
Built-in flashYes (Pop-up)
Flash range12.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flashYes (via hot shoe or wireless)
Flash modesAuto, Auto slow sync, Auto slow sync with red-eye reduction, Auto with red-eye reduction, Fill-flash, Off, Rear-curtain sync, Rear-curtain with slow sync, Red-eye reduction, Red-eye reduction with slow sync, Slow sync
Continuous drive5.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2, 5, 10, 20 secs (1-9 exposures))
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot AF-area
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Resolutions1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50 fps), 640 x 424 (30, 25 fps)
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC
Storage includedNone
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (mini HDMI)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portNo
Wireless notesWU-1a Wireless Mobile Adapter
Remote controlYes (Optional)
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionEN-EL14a lithium-ion battery and charger
Battery Life (CIPA)700
Weight (inc. batteries)430 g (0.95 lb / 15.17 oz)
Dimensions124 x 98 x 76 mm (4.88 x 3.86 x 2.99″)
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingNo
GPS notesGP-1

Nikon D3300: Conclusion

The 24MP sensor is capable of providing outstanding levels of information, to begin with. Then there’s the interface; the crisp and tidy look of the Guide Mode of the D3300 tends to be something that keeps this camera enticing to casual consumers, helping you get to grips and appreciate the fundamentals of photography while you shoot, whilst the 18-55mm collapsible kit lens is perfect while you’re on the move.

Nikon D3300: Price

Image Quality
ISO Performance
Video mode
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Paul Landscape Photographer and YouTuber. He is taking photos all over the world but the main focus is the cold, rough, northern part of Europe. His style is somewhere in between dramatic and colorful fantasy and Scandinavian minimalism. Be sure to check out his YouTube channel for epic landscape photography videos from around the world.


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