Comments on still image quality
Sharpness: The elimination of the low-pass filter enables the Nikon D5300 to shoot excellent images full of details. The ISO 12.233 chart was reproduced with 3821 lines per picture height, which is nearly the nominal resolution of the sensor (4000 lines per picture height). In some scenes we saw some overshot effects on extreme contrast lines, but most real photographic scenes are reproduced very cleanly. The standard test box was reproduced with a lot of details, especially in the differentiation in the colored spools and the reproduction of the figures on the ruler.
Noise: The camera showed a very good performance in our noise tests. Up to ISO 1600, the luminance noise level keeps below 1.0 percent, which is a good result for a camera with an APS-C-sized sensor. But more important is the very good filtering of luminance noise effects. The noise spectrum is very low and very smooth. Combined with the fact that the colored noise artifacts in the RGB channels had nearly no aberrations and are perfectly located on the test graph, the camera created very clean-looking images. At ISO 12,800, the noise structure becomes clearly visible, but because of missing RGB artifacts it looks more like analog film grain than like colored digital noise.
The dynamic range results are very good. The camera gained a maximum of 11.4 f/stops and keeps the dynamic level of more than 11 f/stops up to ISO 1600.
The standard test box shot is a little underexposed (just like the portrait shot). The white balance system worked very well and the colors are neutral and realistic.
Comments on video functions
The camera makes videos in Full HD mode with 1920×1080 pixels and with up to 50/60 frames per second in progressive mode. It offers a lot of movie modes with different frame and data rates. It is possible to use NTSC frame rates between 29.97 frames per second and 60 frames per second and PAL frame rates with 25 and 50 frames per second. In addition, the camera offers a 24p mode, which is compatible with Blu-ray discs. The camera uses the Apple MOV format with a H.264 compression to save its video clips. The data rate is very high.
The camera offers an HDMI interface for video presentation and a microphone jack for better sound quality, which works with third-party microphones or the optional Nikon ME-1. The standard microphones are located on the top of the camera in front of the accessory shoe on the top. The camera allows users to shoot in all manual exposure modes. The user can choose P, S, A, and M mode for video recording and change the ISO speed setting manually. The fully articulated swivel monitor of the D5300 is very helpful when shooting video.
The camera uses the Apple MOV format with a H.264 compression to save its video clips.
Comments on video quality
The ISO 12.233 chart was reproduced with 787.2 lines per picture height. This is a good result for a D-SLR with video recording mode, but a little disappointing compared to the excellent resolution result of the D5300 in photo mode. The color results of the test videos are similar to the color results in photo mode. The automatic white balance system worked well, nearly all gray patterns are located exactly in the center of the result chart and only the brightest gray pattern is shifted into the yellow/ green direction. The darker blue colors are boosted and shifted into the magenta area, while the absolute cyan had a somewhat low saturation.
Skin tones match their given values quite well and show only a little shift into the more red and yellow area. Overall, videos taken with the Nikon D5300 have a very natural color look. The photographer can change the look with image and color styles in the camera as desired.
The noise results in video mode are as good as in photo mode. The noise spectrum is a little higher and the pixel noise curves are a little bit more jagged and hacked than in photo mode, but the luminance noise factor is very low. The dynamic range results in video mode are not as high as in photo mode. The camera gained a maximum of 10 f/stops in its videos at the ISO 100 setting and keeps a level of 9 to 10 f/stops at ISO 200 to 3200, which is a good result for videos taken with a D-SLR system.
The Nikon D5300 (body only) has a list price of $799.95; $899.95 with the 18-55mm VR II kit lens.
· Q Fast entry-level camera with a lot of features
· Q WLAN for direct image copy to smartphone or PC
· Q Fully articulated swivel monitor
· Q GPS integrated
· Q Built-in flash system which can be used as master system for Nikon’s Advanced
· WLAN software (smartphone app) less comfortable and powerful than other
· A somewhat bulky design/body.