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Nikon D5200 versus Nikon D5300

The Nikon D5200 and the Nikon D5300 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in November 2012 and October 2013. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 24 megapixel. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.

Body comparison: Nikon D5200 vs Nikon D5300

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Nikon D5200 and the Nikon D5300. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the D5200 – represents the basis or 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).

Snapsort Nikon D5200 vs Nikon D5300
Compare D5200 versus D5300 top
Compare D5200 and D5300 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Nikon D5300 is somewhat smaller (3 percent) than the Nikon D5200. Moreover, the D5300 is markedly lighter (14 percent) than the D5200. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the D5200 nor the D5300 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 find an overview of suitable optics in the Nikon Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the D5200 gets 500 shots out of its EN-EL14 battery, while the D5300 can take 600 images on a single charge of its EN-EL14a power pack.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.

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)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Nikon D5200» 129 mm 98 mm 78 mm 555 g 500 n Nov 2012 749- i Nikon D5200
Nikon D5300« 125 mm 98 mm 76 mm 480 g 600 n Oct 2013 799- i Nikon D5300
Nikon D3400« » 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 445 g 1200 n Aug 2016 499 i i Nikon D3400
Nikon D5600« » 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 465 g 970 n Nov 2016 699 i i Nikon D5600
Nikon D5500« » 124 mm 97 mm 70 mm 420 g 820 n Jan 2015 899- i Nikon D5500
Nikon D3300« » 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 430 g 700 n Jan 2014 499- i Nikon D3300
Nikon D7100« » 136 mm 107 mm 76 mm 765 g 950 Y Feb 2013 1,199- i Nikon D7100
Nikon D3200« » 125 mm 96 mm 77 mm 505 g 540 n Apr 2012 599- i Nikon D3200
Nikon D5100« » 128 mm 97 mm 79 mm 560 g 660 n Apr 2011 749- i Nikon D5100
Nikon D5000« » 127 mm 104 mm 80 mm 590 g 510 n Apr 2009 749- i Nikon D5000
Sony RX1R« » 113 mm 65 mm 70 mm 482 g 270 n Jun 2013 2,799- i Sony RX1R

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The D5200 was somewhat cheaper (by 6 percent) than the D5300 at launch, but both cameras fall into the same price category. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison: Nikon D5200 vs Nikon D5300

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to 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 D5200 and Nikon D5300 sensor measures

The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 24 megapixel. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the D5200 and the D5300 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the D5300 is a somewhat more recent model (by 11 months) than the D5200, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the D5300 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

D5200 versus D5300 MP

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. 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 image quality. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

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 D5200» APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i24.213.9128484Nikon D5200
Nikon D5300« APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.013.9133883Nikon D5300
Nikon D3400« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.813.9119286Nikon D3400
Nikon D5600« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0130684Nikon D5600
Nikon D5500« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.114.0143884Nikon D5500
Nikon D3300« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.8138582Nikon D3300
Nikon D7100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.213.7125683Nikon D7100
Nikon D3200« » APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/30p24.113.2113181Nikon D3200
Nikon D5100« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p23.513.6118380Nikon D5100
Nikon D5000« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848720/24p22.712.586872Nikon D5000
Sony RX1R« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p25.013.6253791Sony RX1R

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, but the D5300 provides a faster frame rate than the D5200. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/60p, while the D5200 is limited to 1080/60i.

 

Feature comparison: Nikon D5200 vs Nikon D5300

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The D5200 and the D5300 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 adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Nikon D5200 and Nikon D5300 along with similar information for a selection of comparators. If you need more detail on the specs, you can find comprehensive listings, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

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)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Nikon D5200»optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D5200
Nikon D5300«optical n 3.2 1037 swivel n 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D5300
Nikon D3400« »optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D3400
Nikon D5600« »optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D5600
Nikon D5500« »optical n 3.2 1037 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D5500
Nikon D3300« »optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 4000 5.0 Y n Nikon D3300
Nikon D7100« »optical Y 3.2 1229 fixed n 8000 6.0 Y n Nikon D7100
Nikon D3200« »optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 4000 4.0 Y n Nikon D3200
Nikon D5100« »optical n 3.0 921 swivel n 4000 4.0 Y n Nikon D5100
Nikon D5000« »optical n 2.7 230 full-flex n 4000 4.0 Y n Nikon D5000
Sony RX1R« »- n 3.0 1229 fixed n 4000 5.0 Y n Sony RX1R

Both the D5200 and the D5300 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The D5200 was replaced by the Nikon D5300, while the D5300 was followed by the Nikon D5500.

Review summary: Nikon D5200 vs Nikon D5300

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Nikon D5200 and the Nikon D5300? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.


Advantages of the Nikon D5200:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in November 2012).


Arguments in favor of the Nikon D5300:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/60p versus 1080/60i).
  • 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).
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 75g or 14 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (600 versus 500) out of a single battery charge.
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (11 months) more recently.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the D5300 is the clear winner of the contest (7 : 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.

D5200 02:07 D5300

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the D5200 or the D5300 handle or perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased. This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The detailed reviews can be accessed by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Nikon D5200»HiRec79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2012 749- i Nikon D5200
Nikon D5300«HiRec79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Oct 2013 799- i Nikon D5300
Nikon D3400« »Rec76/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2016 499 i i Nikon D3400
Nikon D5600« »-79/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Nov 2016 699 i i Nikon D5600
Nikon D5500« »Rec79/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jan 2015 899- i Nikon D5500
Nikon D3300« »Rec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2014 499- i Nikon D3300
Nikon D7100« »HiRec85/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Feb 2013 1,199- i Nikon D7100
Nikon D3200« »HiRec73/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2012 599- i Nikon D3200
Nikon D5100« »HiRec76/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Apr 2011 749- i Nikon D5100
Nikon D5000« »HiRec75/1004/55/54.5/5 Apr 2009 749- i Nikon D5000
Sony RX1R« »--4/5rev4.5/5 Jun 2013 2,799- i Sony RX1R

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

 

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 make your choice using the following search menu. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please send me an email, and I will try to locate and add the respective data to the application.

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