Nikon D5300 vs D5600 – What is the Difference?

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If you put the Nikon D5300 and Nikon D5600 beside each other, you’ll be pretty much looking at the same thing because they practically look the same. Their processor and sensor are similar, and they also share other features. Both are considered entry-level cameras that come with inexpensive price tags. Determining what makes one different from the other, such as doing a Nikon D5300 vs D5600 comparison, will help any photographer decide which one to buy.

Nikon D5300 vs D5600

These Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras were first introduced to the public several years ago – 2013 for the D5300 and 2016 for the D5600. As such, the D5600 is considered an upgrade of the D5300 as it came years later, after another Nikon DSLR was introduced to the public (the D5500). This is not to say, however, that the D5600 has a clear advantage over the D5300. There are other things to consider.

It is also important to note that the two DSLRs are from the same series, which explains why they look identical, especially in the eyes of a first time DSLR user. A detailed comparison will help determine the difference between the two.

Nikon D5300 vs D5600

As previously mentioned, the two Nikon cameras are quite similar in physical appearance. Even their weight and their size are not too far from each other – the D5600 is lighter and smaller by a very small percentage – 15.0 oz and 4.9×3.8×2.8 inches compared to the D5300’s 17.oz at 4.9×3.9×3.0 inches. There are differences, however. They may just not be that obvious to novice users.

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First off, although these lightweight DSLRs are both equipped with an LCD screen, the D5600 comes with a touchscreen. The D5300 does not. Nevertheless, because of their LCD screens, both are ideal for vlogging (or for taking selfies).

In terms of optical viewfinder (OVF), there’s not much difference between the two, with both giving you 95% coverage at a magnification of 0.55. And if you’re worried about shooting in low light conditions, these cameras can help via their built-in flash. If you are not that confident yet using the built-in flash; you can always switch to using an external flash, which is applicable for both cameras.

Sensor
24MP, APS-C CMOS Sensor
24MP, APS-C CMOS Sensor
ISO
100 - 12800
100 - 25600
Lens Mount
Nikon F Mount
Nikon F Mount
Continuous Shooting
5 fps
5 fps
Video Resolution:
1920 x 1080
1920 x 1080
Dynamic Range
13.9
14.0
GPS
BuiltIn
None
NFC Connection
No
Yes
Bluetooth
No
Yes
Dynamic Range
13.9
14.0
Microphone Port
Yes
Yes
RAW Support
Yes
Yes
Articulating Screen
Yes
Yes
Built-in Flash
Yes
Yes
Touch Screen
No
Yes
Battery Life
600 shots
820 shots
Weight
480 g
465 g
Sensor
24MP, APS-C CMOS Sensor
ISO
100 - 12800
Lens Mount
Nikon F Mount
Continuous Shooting
5 fps
Video Resolution:
1920 x 1080
Dynamic Range
13.9
GPS
BuiltIn
NFC Connection
No
Bluetooth
No
Dynamic Range
13.9
Microphone Port
Yes
RAW Support
Yes
Articulating Screen
Yes
Built-in Flash
Yes
Touch Screen
No
Battery Life
600 shots
Weight
480 g
Sensor
24MP, APS-C CMOS Sensor
ISO
100 - 25600
Lens Mount
Nikon F Mount
Continuous Shooting
5 fps
Video Resolution:
1920 x 1080
Dynamic Range
14.0
GPS
None
NFC Connection
Yes
Bluetooth
Yes
Dynamic Range
14.0
Microphone Port
Yes
RAW Support
Yes
Articulating Screen
Yes
Built-in Flash
Yes
Touch Screen
Yes
Battery Life
820 shots
Weight
465 g

Sensor and Processor Comparison

While both cameras come with an APS-C sensor and EXPEED 4 processor at 24.78 mega pixels, D5600’s ISO goes all the way from ISO 100 to ISO 25,600, as compared to D5300’s ISO, which is only up to 12,800.

In addition, although they come with similar sensor specs, the fact that D5600 came out three years later and adopted technological advances not available at the time the D5300 was released should be considered.

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Both, however, are capable of capturing detailed images courtesy of a low-pass filter. (A low-pass filter helps remove moiré – those stripes and fine patterns that sometimes appear in images, such as the ones you see on clothes.)

When it comes to image quality, the two cameras are somewhat equal in footing. They have medium-sized sensors, so both are capable of producing good quality images (remember: large sensors = more color depth).

What makes these two Nikon cameras stand out is the fact that they do not only take good photos, they’re also quite good for videos.

D5600 DX-Format Digital SLR w/AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
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Video Performance Comparison

The Nikon D5300 is capable of shooting full HD videos with a frame rate of up to 59.94fps. It also allows you to shoot in Live View Mode, which is a convenient way of ensuring the images are sharp and videos in frame (continuous auto focus). Light sensitivity for videos is from ISO 100 to ISO 12,800.

If you want good audio, the camera comes with a built-in microphone; although it is advisable to always use an external microphone for best outcome.

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As for the Nikon D5600, maximum frame rate for full HD videos is also at 59.94fps, complete with continuous auto focus and Live View mode. It likewise comes with a built-in microphone. However, unlike with the D5300, the D5600 has Nikon’s ME-1 external stereo microphone.

What makes D5600 video specs different is its time-lapse feature. Both cameras, however, can’t shoot 4K videos.

Connectivity

Both cameras have built-in Wi-Fi and an HDMI output. The D5300 fares a bit better though in terms of GPS tracking, which the D5600 does not have. On the other hand, the D5600 features Bluetooth capabilities, which is absent in the D5300. Battery life is also longer for the newer version.

Although both DSLRs are not equipped with an external speaker and external headphone jack, they come with built-in microphone and a port that can be used for an additional external mic.

D5600 DX-Format Digital SLR w/AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
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Nikon D5300 vs. Nikon D5600: The Price

In almost all aspects, the D5300 and D5600 are quite similar. There are no major differences between the two. Perhaps then it will help if you know the price range for each camera – this can be the deciding factor for you.

Related: How to Select the Best Camera for Landscapes

Since it came earlier, the Nikon D5300 can be purchased at a more affordable price.

Check the price on Amazon: Nikon D5300Nikon D5600

Types of Photography for the Nikon D5300 and D5600

In case you are planning to use your DSLR for specific types of photography, here is a comparison of how the Nikon D5300 and the Nikon D5600 fare against each other in various photography areas.

  • Portrait Photography – Both cameras rank average in this area, as they are equipped with similar features essential for portrait photography. They have the same APS-C sensor with the same resolution (24.78 mega pixels). The two cameras, however, don’t have image stabilization.
  • Street Photography – Again, the two cameras perform quite similarly in this area. And again, they score low in the image stabilization category. As street photography requires a lot of moving around, the fact that both cameras have a large body can also be an obstacle.

    Related: Best Lenses for Nikon D5300, D5400, D5600
  • Sports Photography – Similar performance as both have features like cross type focus sensors and fast shutter speed (1/4000 sec). Although both come with reliable batteries, the D5600 is capable of taking an average of 820 shots compared to D5300’s 600 shots.
  • Landscape Photography – Similar performance as well, particularly in terms of sensor quality and resolution. The only difference is that the D5300 has a built-in GPS that can come in handy when shooting landscape photos.
  • Day-to-Day Photography – In this area, the Nikon D5300 performs a bit better than the D5600 even if they have basically the same camera size and weight. It is capable of producing good images even in scenarios with low lighting. Even with its large body, it can be easy to carry around.

D5600 DX-Format Digital SLR w/AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
Click Image to Learn More

Nikon D5300 vs. Nikon D5600: Conclusion

Side by side, the Nikon D5300 and Nikon D5600 score quite similarly. They have basically the same features, save for very few ones. They’re also both ideal for first timers; for entry-level DSLR photography. The best thing for you to do is make a comparison chart – list down their features – and then check out online reviews from photographers who have experienced using both models.

If possible, you can also ask the store representative to allow you to take test shots before purchasing the camera.

The choice is entirely up to you. The D5300 or the D5600? Choose the one that you think will give you the best value for your money.

Nikon D5300
  • 24.2-megapixel DX-format CMOS image sensor
  • 39-point high-density autofocus system with 9 cross-type sensors
  • Dazzling Full HD 1080p video recording with built-in stereo microphone
  • Built-in Wi-Fi for instant image sharing and camera control, and built-in GPS for geotagging your shots
  • Extra-large ultra-high resolution Vari-angle LCD that swivels 180
Nikon D5600
  • AF-P DX 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR Lens
  • SnapBridge Bluetooth and Wi-Fi with NFC
  • ISO 100-25600 and 5 fps Shooting
  • Full HD 1080p Video Recording at 60 fps
  • 3.2" 1.037m-Dot Vari-Angle Touchscreen

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