Nikon D3300 – DSLR of basic level, little and light one. You shouldn’t be embarrassed by its basic level, because it mostly influences the price and not picture quality.
D3300 satisfies all photographic need of most people; most of them never use some functions, which are present in this camera, so dividing cameras into levels are quite conventional. We are more interested in picture’s quality, which is on high in D3300 and does not lose to more expensive cameras.
The main aspect is color rendition, which traditionally does not give a rise to unfavorable criticism, but makes other manufacturers jealous. If you want to shoot nature, you just need to switch setting “Picture Control” to the mode “Vivid”. It is true that I like to make tones a little warmer, shifting white balance to A2. In these settings sky looks natural, and everything else does not look acidly, as in Samsung cameras, for example.
It goes without saying that in sunny weather you should only shoot using polarizing filter. If you don’t do it, sky will be pale, and you will never win our monthly contest.
Resolution of D3300 is 24 megapixels, and it lets you to shoot lilac, and after that you can sit at home on the computer and thoroughly look for flowers with 5 petals to make a wish. This is how 100% crop of the previous picture looks like:
Considering such high resolution, D3300 lets to shoot on the speed 5 shoots per second, this way it does not lose to more expensive D5500. This speed is sufficient for shooting quickly moving details, especially if you have high-aperture Nikkor 35mm f/1.8 AF-S, which I constantly use, it can be easily seen on EXIF photos. For DX-camers this objective lens is analog for 50mm in FX-cameras, they have the same viewing angle.
Sensitivity is also quite high; ISO 6400 can be considered operational, it lets to save money on high-aperture lenses:
In this picture you can see Soviet landing section, which sampled the Moon’s ground, but I shot it not on the Moon, but at VDNKh at Polytechnic Exhibition. They also have the real atom bomb with special effects: buzzer arises in the dark, then explosion is imitated, even floor trembles under your feet. Very spooky!
D3300 also has interesting panning
mode. It seemed interesting to me, because it works better than on the smartphones, and panorama should be shot not on wide-angle camera, but on something with longer focus, and smartphones don’t do it. Particularity of this mode is that it is available only in Live View: you press the button Lv, and you turn mode wheel to “EFFECTS”:
Then, by rotating wheel under the thumb, you should switch it to panning mode. Panorama can be made in one of two planes.
Generally, I liked panning mode very much. As you can see, it does not get confused by plenty of moving objects (water). Naturally, nobody forbids you to have some shots in the usual mode and then
glue them together on the computer, but it bothers me.
There is one more interesting feature, which I did not note earlier – ability to grade photo right in the camera. You just need to press I in the view mode. You can choose grades from 1 to 5, or mark photo for deleting. This grades and marks are perfectly seen in editors, and they help you to sort the photos – very useful.
What Nikon D3300 does not have
I must say right away, that I do not consider features, which are absent from the camera, significant ones. You can make perfect shot without these options.
95% of people never use these functions even if they are present. But I need to inform you, so you won’t get upset when you’ll buy camera and won’t be able to find something in the menu.
Simplified menu, it does not have whole section “Custom Settings Menu”, as it is in more expensive cameras. But it does not bother at all.
You cannot make a list of your favorite setting, there are only recently changes.
In the Auto ISO mode there is no actual value in the eyepiece, it can be seen only on LCD.
LCD is closed by plastic without anti-reflective coating, so in sunny weather it is hard to see anything on it.
Mode of serial/time-lapse shooting is switched only by button; do not look for it in the menu.
You can assign one of four functions for functional button: ISO, white balance, picture’s quality and Active D-Lighting. Unfortunately, you cannot assign neither Auto-ISO activation nor Picture Control, so you need to look through meny.
HDR mode, presenting in more expensive cameras, is absent. This is the only fact, which upset me. I wrote about advantages of HDR in more details in the review of Nikon D610.
Built-in flash does not have command mode, but you can solve this problem by buying
Yongnuo YN-560III or radiosynchronizators.
D3300 does not support FP-synchronization.
There is no time-lapse mode, but you can always use IR-remote or wire remote.
There is no screwdriver. Old objective lenses without motors can be fastened without it, but auto focus will not work.
Exposure measuring will not work with old manual lenses.
Nikon D3300 is a great camera of very humble size, very light one, with the highest resolution and excellent speed. Having this camera, you can shoot everything. Somebody can feel uncomfortable, for example, my little finger slips off due to camera’s small size, but this camera can fit into every bag.
I can recommend D3300 to every beginner photographers, especially if you need to save money.
I advise to take the version Kit with objective lens 18-55mm. You can always spend money on additional objective lenses.