Nikon D300 Review

 
Camera Reviews / Nikon Cameras / Nikon D i Full Review

Nikon D300 Feature Comparison

The chart below compares the D300 with other current Nikon "prosumer" models. What we've done below is to present something of a hybrid comparison between these three models. A red cell means that a given camera performs below the other two, a green cell means that it performs better than the other two, and a yellow cell means it falls between the other two. In cases where two cameras share a superior capability, both their cells will be colored green. Sharp-eyed readers may find some areas where we haven't chosen to highlight a particular difference. Those cases are simply ones that we don't feel are significant in typical use of the camera.

Nikon D300 vs other "prosumer" Nikon SLRs
Manufacturer
Nikon
Nikon
Nikon
Model
D80
D200
D300
Imaging
System
Sensor Manufacturer
Sony Sony Sony
Sensor Type
CCD CCD CMOS
Color Filter Array
RGB RGB RGB
Total Megapixels
10.75
10.92
13.1
Effective Megapixels
10.2 10.2 12.3
Effective Sensor Size (mm)
23.6 x 15.8
23.6 x 15.8
23.6 x 15.8
Focal Length Multiplier (approx.)
1.5x
(Nikon DX)
1.5x
(Nikon DX)
1.5x
(Nikon DX)
Ultrasonic Dust Reduction
No
No
Yes
Image Processor
Not stated
Not stated
EXPEED
Viewfinder
Type
Eye-level pentaprism
Eye-level pentaprism
Eye-level pentaprism
Coverage
95%
95%
100%
Magnification
(-1 diopter with 50mm lens at infinity)
0.94x
0.94x
0.94x
Eyepoint (mm)
19.5
19.5
19.5
Dioptric Adjustment Range (diopters)
-2.0 to +1.0
-2.0 to +1.0
-2.0 to +1.0
Focusing Screen
Type-B BriteView clear matte screen Mark II, with on-demand grid lines
Type-B BriteView clear matte screen Mark II, with on-demand grid lines
Type-B BriteView clear matte screen Mark II, with on-demand grid lines
Depth of Field Preview
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Live View
(on LCD)
No
No
Yes
(2 Modes:
Hand-held mode uses conventional AF sensor;
Tripod mode uses contrast detect AF from image sensor)
Recording
System
Recording Media / Quantity / Slot Type
Secure Digital card
 (SDHC compatible)
Type I or II CF card / Microdrive
Type I or II CF card / Microdrive
(UDMA supported)
Compatible File System
FAT 16 / FAT 32
FAT 16 / FAT 32
FAT 16 / FAT 32
Recording Formats
RAW 12-bit (compressed NEF), JPEG
RAW 12-bit (uncompressed or compressed NEF), JPEG
RAW 12-bit or 14-bit (uncompressed, lossless compressed or compressed NEF), TIFF (32-bit), JPEG
Maximum Resolution
3872 x 2592
3872 x 2592
4288 x 2848
Reduced Resolutions (JPEG only)
2896 x 1944;
1936 x 1296
2896 x 1944;
1936 x 1296
3,216 x 2,136;
2,144 x 1,424
RAW + JPEG Recording
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Color Space, Image Parameters
&
White Balance
User-Selectable Color Space
Yes
sRGB (two variants) + Adobe RGB
Yes
sRGB (two variants) + Adobe RGB
Yes
sRGB + Adobe RGB
Processing Parameters
(Contrast, Sharpness, Saturation, Hue) / # of Increments
7 options each for sharpness and contrast, 4 options for saturation. 7-step hue adjustment.
7 options for sharpening, 5 options for contrast, 4 options for saturation, 7-step hue adjustment.
7 options for sharpening, 5 options for contrast, 3 options for brightness, 5 options for saturation, 5-step hue adjustment.
Picture Control System
No No Yes
Active
D-Lighting
No No Yes
Preset WB Settings
6 (Daylight, Cloudy, Shade, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Flash)
6 (Incandescent, Fluorescent, Direct Sunlight, Flash, Cloudy, Shade)
Seven presets with fine tuning; four Manual presets
Manual Color Temperature Setting Range
2,500 ~ 10,000K in increments of roughly 10 mired
2,500 ~ 10,000K in increments of roughly 10 mired
2,500 ~ 10,000K in increments of roughly 10 mired
WB Adjustment Range
±3 steps in 1-step increments
10 mireds per step
±3 steps in 1-step increments
10 mireds per step
±6 steps in 1-step increments
5 mireds per step
Autofocus
System
Type
TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM1000 autofocus module
TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM1000 autofocus module
TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM3500DX autofocus module
contrast detection using LiveView Tripod mode
# of Focusing Points (Focusing Point Type)
11 normal points or 1 wide point (1 cross-type, 2 horizontal-type, 8 vertical-type)
11 normal points or 7 wide points (1 cross-type, 2 horizontal-type, 8 vertical-type)
51 points (15 cross-type, 36 line type)
Superimposed Focus Point Display
Yes Yes Yes
AF Working Range
EV -1 ~ 19 (ISO 100)
EV -1 ~ 19 (ISO 100)
EV -1 ~ 19 (ISO 100)
AF Servo Modes
AF-S (single one-shot), AF-C (continuous tracking),
AF-A (for auto selection of AF-S or AF-C modes).
AF-S (single one-shot), AF-C (continuous tracking).
AF-S (single one-shot), AF-C (continuous tracking).
AF Area Modes
Single area, Dynamic area, Auto area.
Single area, Dynamic area, Group Dynamic area, Dynamic area with closest subject priority.
Single point (51 or 11), Dynamic Area [9 points, 21 points, 51 points, 51 points (3D-tracking)], Auto area.
AF-assist Beam
Yes
Bright incandescent lamp
Yes
Bright incandescent lamp
Yes
Bright incandescent lamp
Fine-tune Front/Back Focus Adjustment
No No Yes (settings for up to 12 lenses)
Exposure
Control
Shooting Modes
11 - Program, shutter-priority AE, aperture-priority AE, Manual, Auto, Portrait, Landcape, Close up, Sports, Night Landscape, Night Portrait.
4 - Program, shutter-priority AE, aperture-priority AE, manual mode.
4 - Program, shutter-priority AE, aperture-priority AE, manual mode.
Metering Zones
420
1,005
1,005
Metering Modes
 1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II (type G and D lenses); Color Matrix Metering II (other CPU lenses); metering performed by 420-segment RGB sensor.
2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 6, 8, or 10 mm dia. circle in center of frame.
3) Spot: Meters 3.5 mm dia. circle (about 2.5% of frame) centered on active focus area.
1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II (type G and D lenses); Color Matrix Metering II (other CPU lenses); color matrix metering available with non-CPU lenses if user provides lens data; metering performed by 1,005-segment RGB sensor.
2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 6, 8, 10, or 13mm dia. circle in center of frame.
3) Spot: Meters 3mm dia. circle (about 2.0% of frame) centered on active focus area (on center focus area when non-CPU lens is used).
1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II (type G and D lenses); Color Matrix Metering II (other CPU lenses); color matrix metering available with non-CPU lenses if user provides lens data; metering performed by 1,005-segment RGB sensor.
2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 6, 8, 10, or 13mm dia. circle in center of frame.
3) Spot: Meters 3mm dia. circle (about 2.0% of frame) centered on active focus area (on center focus area when non-CPU lens is used).
Metering System Working Range
1) EV 0 ~ 20 (Matrix or center-weighted metering)
2) EV 2 ~ 20 (spot metering)
(ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, 20°C/68°F)
1) EV 0 ~ 20 (Matrix or center-weighted metering)
2) EV 2 ~ 20 (spot metering)
(ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, 20°C/68°F)
1) EV 0 ~ 20 (Matrix or center-weighted metering)
2) EV 2 ~ 20 (spot metering)
(ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, 20°C/68°F)
Nikon Scene Recognition System
No No Yes
ISO Range / Extended
100 ~ 1600 / 3200
100 ~ 1600 / 3200
100 / 200 ~ 3200 / 6400
Exposure Compensation
+/- 5EV in 1/2 or 1/3EV increments
+/- 5EV in 1, 1/2 or 1/3EV increments
+/- 5EV in 1, 1/2 or 1/3EV increments
Automatic Exposure Bracketing
2 or 3 shots, 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV steps
2 to 9 exposures in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1EV
2 to 9 exposures in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1EV
Shutter Speeds,
Frame Rate, Shutter Lag
Shutter Type
Electronically controlled mechanical
Electronically controlled mechanical
Electronically controlled mechanical
Shutter Speed Range
1/4000 ~ 30 sec. in steps of 1/3 or 1/2 EV, bulb
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. in steps of 1/3 or 1/2 EV, bulb
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. in steps of 1/3 or 1/2 EV, bulb
Maximum Frames Per Second / Buffer depth
3 fps / 9 JPEG large/fine or 6 RAW frames
5 fps / 31 JPEG large/fine or 21 RAW frames
6.1 fps / 37 JPEG large/fine
or 17 (12-bit) RAW fames
(up to 8 fps with optional MB-D10 battery pack)
Shutter lag, full AF (sec.)
0.25
0.27
0.23
Shutter lag, prefocus (sec.)
0.083
0.057
0.057
Approx. startup time (sec.)
0.2
0.2
0.3
Flash
Built-in Flash / Guide Number (m) at ISO 100
Yes
(12, manual 13)
Yes
(12, manual 13)
Yes
(12, manual 13)
Max flash x-sync speed. (sec.)
1/200
1/250
1/250
(up to 1/320 at reduced GN)
Flash Exposure Compensation
-3 to +1 EV, 1/3 or 1/2 EV steps
-3 to +1 EV, 1/3 or 1/2 EV steps
-3 to +1 EV, 1/3 or 1/2 EV steps
Slow-sync Flash
1st or 2nd curtain
1st or 2nd curtain
1st or 2nd curtain
PC Sync Terminal
Hot shoe only
Yes
Yes
Nikon Advanced Wireless Lighting Support
Camera can act as wireless controller with multiple groups, modes and channels Camera can act as wireless controller with multiple groups, modes and channels Camera can act as wireless controller with multiple groups, modes and channels
Playback
System
LCD Size / Pixel Count
2.5 in LCD / 230,000 pixels
2.5 in LCD / 230,000 pixels
3.0 in LCD / 920,000 pixels
Enlarged Playback / Scroll
1.1 - 25x for large images, 19x for medium images, or 13x for small ones / Yes
1.1 - 25x for large images, 19x for medium images, or 13x for small ones / Yes
1.1 - 27x for large images, 20x for medium images, or 13x for small ones / Yes
LCD Monitor Brightness Adjustment Range
5 steps
5 steps
7 steps
Automatic Rotation for Vertical Shots
Yes
Yes
Yes
Video Out
Analog NTSC/PAL Analog NTSC/PAL Analog NTSC/PAL, HDMI
Other Features
Computer Connection
Yes, USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
Yes, USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
Yes, USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
Direct Printing (PictBridge-compliant printers)
Yes
Yes
Yes
Menu Languages
15 (Japanese, German, English, Spanish, Finnish, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Korean)
13 (Japanese, German, English, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Korean)
15 (Japanese, German, English, Spanish, Finnish, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Korean)
Camera Default Reset
Yes
Yes
Yes
Custom Functions
(Quantity)
Yes (32)
Yes (45)
Yes (48)
Multiple Exposures
Yes
(2~3 shots)
Yes
(2~10 shots)
Yes
(2~10 shots)
In-camera Image Retouching
Yes, D-lighting, Red-eye correction, Trim, Monochrome, Filter effects, Small Picture, Image overlay
No
Yes, expanded over D80
Remote Control
Optional, compatible with MC-DC1 remote cord or ML-L3 wireless remote
Yes, 10-pin remote terminal for optional MC-20/30/36 remote cords or WT-3 wireless remote
Yes, 10-pin remote terminal for optional MC-20/30/36 remote cords or WT-4 wireless remote
Info LCD Panel / Illumination
Yes / Yes
(power switch)
Yes / Yes
(power switch)
Yes / Yes
(power switch)
Number of Command Dials
2
2
2
Optional GPS Support
No Yes, via optional GPS Adapter Cord MC-35 Yes, via optional GPS Adapter Cord MC-35
Programmable function button
Yes
Yes
Yes
In-camera Lateral C.A. Correction
No
No
Yes
Body Structure
Body Cover/Chassis
Largely Polycarbonate
Largely Magnesium Alloy
Largely Magnesium Alloy
Environmental Seals
No Yes Yes
Power System
Battery Compatibility
EN-EL3e,
optional MB-D80 battery pack
EN-EL3e,
optional MB-D200 battery pack
EN-EL3e,
optional MB-D10 battery pack
Rated Shooting Capacity at 20C/68°F
(shots)
100% AE: 2700
50% Flash: 600
100% AE: 1800
50% Flash: 340
CIPA: 1000
Dimensions & Weight
Dimensions (WxHxD, mm)
132 x 103 x 77
147 x 113 x 74
147 x 114 x 74
Weight (body only)
  585 g
830 g
825 g
Operational
Environment
Operating Temperature Range
0 ~ 40°C
0 ~ 40°C
0 ~ 40°C
Operating Humidity Range
< 85%
< 85%
< 85%
Kit Lens
Focal Length / Aperture
18-135mm
f/3.5-5.6G ED
-
-
Lens Compatibility
Lens Mount / Compatibility
  1. DX Nikkor: All functions supported;
  2. Type G- or D-AF Nikkor: All functions supported;
  3. Micro Nikkor 85mm F2.8D: All functions supported except some exposure modes;
  4. Other AF Nikkor (excluding lenses for F3AF): All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR;
  5. AI-P Nikkor: All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR and autofocus;
  6. Non-CPU: Can be used in exposure mode M, but exposure meter does not function; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster.
  7. IX Nikkor Lenses cannot be used.
  1. DX Nikkor: All functions supported;
  2. Type G- or D-AF Nikkor: All functions supported;
  3. Micro Nikkor 85mm F2.8D: All functions supported except some exposure modes;
  4. Other AF Nikkor (excluding lenses for F3AF): All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR;
  5. AI-P Nikkor: All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR and autofocus;
  6. Non-CPU: Can be used in exposure mode A and M with metering; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster.
  7. IX Nikkor Lenses cannot be used.
  1. DX Nikkor: All functions supported;
  2. Type G- or D-AF Nikkor: All functions supported;
  3. Micro Nikkor 85mm F2.8D: All functions supported except some exposure modes;
  4. Other AF Nikkor (excluding lenses for F3AF): All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR;
  5. AI-P Nikkor: All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering, i-TTL balanced Fill-Flash for digital SLR and autofocus;
  6. Non-CPU: Can be used in exposure mode A and M with metering; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster. Up to 9 non-CPU lenses can be registered.
  7. IX Nikkor Lenses cannot be used.
Meter Coupling
CPU
Combined CPU and AI
Combined CPU and AI

Nikon D300

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