The Good Excellent photo quality, a great feature set, and speedy performance put the Nikon D5300 ahead of the pack.
The Bad The default settings could be better and Live View is still really slow to use.
The Bottom Line The Nikon D5300 is a great choice as a general-purpose dSLR.
A great everyday dSLR
With the D5300's excellent photo quality, fast performance, and great feature set, Nikon succeeds at improving on an already great camera, the
As the least expensive camera yet to use a sensor without an optical low-pass filter (OLPF), the Nikon D5300 delivers sharper images than most cameras in its class. It sports an improved body design with a slightly larger viewfinder and a bigger, higher-resolution LCD than its predecessor, bakes in Wi-Fi and GPS capabilities, and incorporates a stereo microphone. It uses a new version of Nikon's Expeed image processor, which allows for the addition of 1080/60p video, an extra stop of ISO sensitivity, better battery life (the D5300 also takes a new battery), and a couple of new in-camera effects, toy camera and HDR painting. In addition, the camera ships with a new kit lens, the 18-140mm f3.5-5.6, which provides more flexibility than the 18-105mm f3.5-5.6 that initially accompanied the D5200.
The D5300 delivers excellent photo quality for its price class. Though it doesn't have the broadest tonal range I've seen, it generally produces sharp photos with excellent color reproduction and really good JPEG images in low light; it's as good as the Fujifilm X-M1 and arguably better because the higher resolution gives it more detail to work with. Its images are noticeably better than the D5200's at every ISO sensitivity, though it looks like that's simply because they're sharper, not less noisy.