My Bullet points touch on what matters. Do not get stuck on numbers - the difference in focus points 39 vs 11 or the megapixels 24 vs 18. Both sound like a big difference but in day to day, real world use they do not matter.
Nikon D5300 Strengths
- Excellent image quality- very sharp when using a good lens
- Excellent Auto and flash setting - nice consistent exposure
- GPS and Wifi built in. See Weaknesses of the D5300.
- A great number of scenes, filters, effects and robust HDR. This includes "fun features" like selective coloring and miniature video mode - Watch my video introducing the fun features of the D5200 & D5300 (they are the same in this respect)
- Can shoot 1080P at 60fps - if you want to do slow mo this allows for full HD at 1/2 speed (30fps)
Suggestion - Buy the 35mm f/1.8 with the D5300 and you have the most portable package with excellent low light quality. You do sacrifice some convenience but gain incredible sharpness, quality and the ability to create those images with blurred background. More lens recommendations for the Nikon D5300Nikon D5300 Weaknesses
- User interface is cluttered and at times overwhelming
- No Touchscreen - this can make menu navigation clunky and it does make changing focus in live view tedious
- Live view focus is slower and no silent lenses available for auto focus during video
- No focus motor which means there are some lenses that won't auto focus with your camera. There are plenty of lenses that will auto focus but it does make shopping for lenses a little more confusing and it is easier to end up with lenses that are manual focus only.
- Slight greenish tint to many images indoors
- GPS is quirky and if you are not careful you can completely drain your battery
- Aperture changes in live view are at times blocked - you need to exit live view to change aperture
- Sold with the 18-55 (newly redesigned but still not great) lens - SOFT. Buy with 18-104 or review my lens recommendations above.
Canon T5i (700D) Strengths
- User friendly with a responsive and excellent touchscreen
- Sold with 18-55 STM or 18-135 STM, both are very good starter lenses
- Live view focus is faster and with STM lens it is smooth and silent making for easy video capture
- Live view exposure simulation is quirk free - it just works and is excellent for learning- you can change aperture during live view
- Wireless flash control
- Less lens confusion, all current Canon lenses will auto focus with the T5i and a greater number of deals and savings on Canon lenses - more sales, rebates and refurbished store.
- Canon colors are warmer and tend to look better(to me) right out of the box
Canon T5i weaknesses
- Image quality in low light is not as good as D5300 - T5i sensor is 4 years old and still good but not as good as the Nikon D5300
- Exposure of images when popup flash is used are not great - often slightly over exposed.
- No cheap 35mm f/1.8 lens as an option. Just the 40mm f/2.8 - still great but not as fast(watch my podcast to hear the word "fast" defined along with lots of other jargon.
Final Word - As an all around photo and video machine I really like the T5i - it provides that smooth and silent auto focus for video, is very user friendly while offering very good image quality and provides room to grow as a photographer.
The D5300 provides excellent image quality at the expense of user friendliness but does provide some power if you go digging through the menu. It also has to be given high marks for excellent auto pics- just point and shoot. Avoid the 18-55. The 18-140 is fine but if you are thinking about buying this camera and not planning on also purchasing the 35mm f/1.8 you are missing out.
Considering spending $1000+ on the Nikon D5300? Also consider the Canon 70D which is about the same price and offers all the benefits of the Canon - see my D5300 review for more comparison.
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