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Nikon D3300 vs D5600

The Nikon D3300 and the Nikon D5600 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in January 2014 and November 2016. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 24 megapixels.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Nikon D3300 VS Nikon D5600
Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Nikon F mount lenses Nikon F mount lenses
24 MP, APS-C Sensor 24 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 100-12800 (100-25600) ISO 100-25600
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
3.0" LCD, 921k dots 3.2" LCD, 1037k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Swivel touchscreen
5 shutter flaps per second 5 shutter flaps per second
700 shots per battery charge970 shots per battery charge
124 x 98 x 76 mm, 430 g 124 x 97 x 70 mm, 465 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon D3300 and the Nikon D5600? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Nikon D3300 and the Nikon D5600 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The D3300 can be obtained in three different colors (black, grey, red), while the D5600 is available in two color-versions (black, red).

Size Nikon D3300 vs Nikon D5600
Compare D3300 versus D5600 top
Comparison D3300 or D5600 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D5600 is somewhat smaller (1 percent) than the Nikon D3300. However, the D5600 is markedly heavier (8 percent) than the D3300. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the D3300 nor the D5600 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can compare the optics available in the Nikon Lens Catalog.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3300» 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 430 g 700 n Jan 2014 499iNikon D3300
 
Nikon D5600« 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 465 g 970 n Nov 2016 699 iNikon D5600
 
Canon 200D« » 122 mm 93 mm 70 mm 453 g 650 n Jun 2017 549iCanon 200D
 
Canon M3« » 111 mm 68 mm 44 mm 366 g 250 n Feb 2015 679iCanon M3
 
Nikon D3500« » 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 365 g 1550 n Aug 2018 429 iNikon D3500
 
Nikon D3400« » 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 445 g 1200 n Aug 2016 499iNikon D3400
 
Nikon D5500« » 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 420 g 820 n Jan 2015 899iNikon D5500
 
Nikon D7200« » 136 mm 107 mm 76 mm 765 g 1110 Y Mar 2015 1,199iNikon D7200
 
Nikon D5300« » 125 mm 98 mm 76 mm 480 g 600 n Oct 2013 799iNikon D5300
 
Nikon D3200« » 125 mm 96 mm 77 mm 505 g 540 n Apr 2012 599iNikon D3200
 
Nikon D5200« » 129 mm 98 mm 78 mm 555 g 500 n Nov 2012 749iNikon D5200
 
Sony A6000« » 120 mm 67 mm 45 mm 344 g 360 n Feb 2014 599iSony A6000
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The D3300 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 29 percent) than the D5600, which puts it into a different market segment. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.

 

Sensor comparison

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.5. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Nikon D3300 and Nikon D5600 sensor measures

The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 24 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the D3300 and the D5600 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the D5600 is much more recent (by 2 years and 10 months) than the D3300, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.

The Nikon D3300 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Nikon D5600 are ISO 100 to ISO 25600 (no boost).

D3300 versus D5600 MP

For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3300 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.8138582Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D5600 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0130684Nikon D5600
 
Canon 200D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179Canon 200D
 
Canon M3 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.811.8116972Canon M3
 
Nikon D3500 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p........Nikon D3500
 
Nikon D3400 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.813.9119286Nikon D3400
 
Nikon D5500 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0143884Nikon D5500
 
Nikon D7200 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.514.6133387Nikon D7200
 
Nikon D5300 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.013.9133883Nikon D5300
 
Nikon D3200 APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/30p24.113.2113181Nikon D3200
 
Nikon D5200 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i24.213.9128484Nikon D5200
 
Sony A6000 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.113.1134782Sony A6000

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

 

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The D3300 and the D5600 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinders of both cameras offer the same field of view (95%), as well as the same magnification (0.57x). The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Nikon D3300, the Nikon D5600, and comparable cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3300optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D5600optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D5600
 
Canon 200Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 200D
 
Canon M3optional n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 4.2 Y n Canon M3
 
Nikon D3500optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D3500
 
Nikon D3400optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D3400
 
Nikon D5500optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D5500
 
Nikon D7200optical Y 3.2 1229 fixed n 1/8000s 6.0 Y n Nikon D7200
 
Nikon D5300optical n 3.2 1037 swivel n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D5300
 
Nikon D3200optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n Nikon D3200
 
Nikon D5200optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D5200
 
Sony A60001440 n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/4000s 11.0 Y n Sony A6000

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The D5600 has a touchscreen, while the D3300 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The D5600 has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies. In contrast, the D3300 does not have a selfie-screen.

The Nikon D5600 has an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the D3300 and the D5600 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.

 

Connectivity comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon D3300 and Nikon D5600 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3300YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D5600YstereomonoY-mini2.0YYYNikon D5600
 
Canon 200DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYYCanon 200D
 
Canon M3YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon M3
 
Nikon D3500Ymonomono--mini2.0--YNikon D3500
 
Nikon D3400Ymonomono--mini2.0--YNikon D3400
 
Nikon D5500YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--Nikon D5500
 
Nikon D7200YstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-Nikon D7200
 
Nikon D5300YstereomonoY-mini2.0Y--Nikon D5300
 
Nikon D3200YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D3200
 
Nikon D5200YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D5200
 
Sony A6000Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony A6000

It is notable that the D5600 offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the D3300 does not offer wifi capability.

The D5600 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Nikon. In contrast, the D3300 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the D3300 was succeeded by the Nikon D3400. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon website.

Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is the Nikon D3300 better than the Nikon D5600 or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Reasons to prefer the Nikon D3300:

  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (29 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in January 2014).


Arguments in favor of the Nikon D5600:

  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1.2 EV of extra DR).
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.2" vs 3.0") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1037k vs 921k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (970 versus 700) out of a single battery charge.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 10 months of technical progress since the D3300 launch.

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D5600 is the clear winner of the contest (12 : 2 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

D3300 02:12 D5600

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon D3300 and the Nikon D5600 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the D3300 or the D5600. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

Expert reviews

This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cam
era
  labs  
dp
re
  view  
e
photo
  zine  
ima
ging
resource
photo
graphy
  blog  
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Nikon D3300+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2014 499iNikon D3300
 
Nikon D5600..79/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Nov 2016 699 iNikon D5600
 
Canon 200D+ +78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549iCanon 200D
 
Canon M3o75/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Feb 2015 679iCanon M3
 
Nikon D3500..75/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2018 429 iNikon D3500
 
Nikon D3400+76/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2016 499iNikon D3400
 
Nikon D5500+79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jan 2015 899iNikon D5500
 
Nikon D7200+ +84/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Mar 2015 1,199iNikon D7200
 
Nikon D5300+ +79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Oct 2013 799iNikon D5300
 
Nikon D3200+ +73/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2012 599iNikon D3200
 
Nikon D5200+ +79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2012 749iNikon D5200
 
Sony A6000+80/1004.5/55/55/5 Feb 2014 599iSony A6000
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Nikon D3300:
Check Ebay offers
Nikon D5600:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just use the search menu below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications: Nikon D3300 vs Nikon D5600

    Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Nikon F mount lenses Nikon F mount lenses
    Launch Date January 2014 November 2016
    Launch Price USD 499 USD 699
    Sensor Specs Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.5 x 15.6 mm 23.5 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 366.6 mm2 366.6 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.2 mm 28.2 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 24 Megapixels 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 6000 x 4000 pixels 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 3.91 μm 3.91 μm
    Pixel Density 6.55 MP/cm2 6.55 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100-12800 ISO 100-25600 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-25600 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor EXPEED 4 EXPEED 4
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 82 84
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 24.3 24.1
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 12.8 14.0
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 1385 1306
    Screen Specs Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.57x 0.57x
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.2 inch
    LCD Resolution 921k dots 1037k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Swivel screen
    Touch Input no Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 5 shutter flaps/s 5 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy100 000 actuations100 000 actuations
    Time-Lapse Photographyno IntervalometerIntervalometer built-in
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port External MIC port
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication no NFC NFC built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Nikon D3300 Nikon D5600
    Battery Type EN-EL14a EN-EL14a
    Battery Life (CIPA)700 shots per charge970 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 124 x 98 x 76 mm
    (4.9 x 3.9 x 3.0 in)
    124 x 97 x 70 mm
    (4.9 x 3.8 x 2.8 in)
    Camera Weight 430 g (15.2 oz) 465 g (16.4 oz)

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