Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Detailed Comparison

The Sony a6300 vs D5500 comparison might not exactly be the most balanced comparison seeing as the Sony a6300 was released as a semi-pro camera while the Nikon D5500 was released as entry-level. However, we still went ahead with the comparison because what if?


Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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Anyway, we’ve carefully put together the features of both the Sony a6300 and the D5500 and have even pitted the features of one camera against those of the other. This way, which cameras combination of features suits your needs just right.

Now, while this is a detailed review, we have two sections that contain bite sized information; the comparison overview and comparison table sections. You’ll like these sections if you are in a bit of a haste and need to make a really quick decision.

One more thing. We recommend that you check out some of our other Sony-Nikon comparisons like the Sony Alpha 7RII vs Nikon D810.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Comparison Overview

Here is a quick rundown of the facts:

Overall Rating Of The Sony a6300 Vs D5500

Both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 are really good cameras. In fact, despite the fact these two cameras were not introduced as attending to the same level of professionalism, they seem almost equally matched.

The Sony a6300 does have a few features that allude to the fact that it is a semi-pro camera. However, the Nikon D5500 does well for itself.

Rating Of The Features Of The Sony a6300 Vs D5500

First off, the Sony a6300 is a mirrorless camera while the Nikon D5500 is a DSLR. This already supposes that they have a couple of different features.

First off, while the Sony a6300 has an electronic viewfinder, the Nikon D5500 has an optical viewfinder.

The electronic viewfinder will offer you a more accurate representation of what your sensor sees because it shows a digital image. On the other hand, the optical viewfinder does not use a lot of battery power.

Now about the weight, you’ve probably heard that DSLR cameras are usually heavier than their mirrorless counterparts. However, this does not exactly apply to the two cameras in this review. In fact the Sony a6300 is actually heavier by 0.4 pounds.

Some other similar features that these two cameras share are the inbuilt wireless connection, the inbuilt flash, the flash port, a 24 megapixel sensor resolution, an articulating screen and even a microphone port. They both do not have an in body image stabilization feature.

Now to the specificities. The Sony a6300 has a couple of features and functions that you won’t get with the Sony a6300. There is the 4K video recording, weather sealing, 100% viewfinder coverage and the Near Field Connection.

On the other hand, the Nikon D5500 also has a number of features and functions you won’t get with the Sony a6300. There is the use of the UHS-I memory card, a 12 meter flash range (as against 6 meters) and a 3.2 inch touch screen.

Price/Value Ratio – Sony a6300 Vs D5500

We consider both cameras reasonably priced. The Sony a6300 actually costs a bit more than the Nikon D5500.

However, considering the fact that the Sony a6300 was introduced to the market as a semi-pro camera while the Nikon D5500 was introduced as an entry-level we think the price difference is understandable.

About The Brands

Sony

The Sony brand is not only known for producing cameras. It actually also has its hands in a wide range of business ventures including entertainment and gaming.

However, Sony cameras are really popular. A good number of Sony cameras are mirrorless and we could say that Sony actually always does a good job with its sensor. However, its battery is something that Sony needs to really improve on.

Nikon

Nikon is another really popular camera producing brand and it looks to us like its strength lies in how long it has been around. The Nikon brand has been producing cameras since 1948 and as a result, it now has a huge arsenal of lenses and other accessories.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Comparison Table

 

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

Weight 0.93 pounds 0.89 pounds
Dimensions 4.7 by 2.6 by 1.9 inches 4.9 by 3.8 by 2.8 inches
Viewfinder Electronic Optical
Screen Resolution 922k dots 1037k dots
Screen Size 3 inches 3.2 inches
Articulating Screen Tilting Full-flex
Video Resolution 3840 by 2160 1920 by 1080
Continuous Shooting 11 frames per second (fps) 5 frames per second (fps)
Battery Life 400 shots per charge 820 shots per charge
Touch Screen No Yes
ISO Range 100 to 25600 and can expand to 51200 100 to 25600

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – A Comparison Video


Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Which Camera Is Better For What?

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

If you’ll be doing stuff like wildlife photography, sports photography or basically any kind of photography where the subjects move around a lot, consider getting this camera. It has a better continuous shooting mode than the Nikon D5500. On the other hand, if you are looking for the camera you can use for longer periods, consider getting this camera as it has the longer battery life.
This camera is also the better option for recording videos basically because it can record 4K videos. Also, of the two cameras, only the Nikon D5500 supports the use of the UHS-I memory card. As a result, files will be transferred to storage quicker than with the Sony a6300.

Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Common Features

The idea of this section is to see how similar the Sony a6300 is to the Nikon D5500. This is why we have put together those features that you are sure to find in both cameras. Now, while some of these features are exactly the same in both cameras, some others are slightly different.

1. Viewfinder

First off, both cameras have a viewfinder each. And while they do not have the same kind of viewfinder, we’ve decided to add this feature to our common features section for the basic reason that not every mirrorless camera has a viewfinder.

Very quickly, we want to point out that with those mirrorless cameras that come without a viewfinder, you’ll have to make do with the LCD screen. The LCD screen is all fine and dandy until you have to make use of it under very bright light and you struggle to see what’s on the screen.

Now, to the specifics. The Sony a6300 has an electronic viewfinder while the Nikon D5500 has an optical viewfinder. And the only similarity between these viewfinders is that they can both be used to focus on subjects and detect changes that need to be made before the photo is snapped.

An optical viewfinder is sometimes likened to a window or a pair of binoculars. This is because images appear on the optical viewfinder the way they appear to the human eye.

These images are not digital and so are not the most accurate representation of what your sensor sees. However, the good thing about this kind of viewfinder is that it can be used without using up the camera’s battery power.

On the other hand, the electronic viewfinder is basically a miniature LCD screen. So, images that appear on this viewfinder are digital and as close a representation of what the sensor sees as possible.

However, bear in mind that this viewfinder is not as quick in response as the optical viewfinder.

Furthermore, at 2359k dots, the Sony a6300 has a really good viewfinder resolution. It also has a 100% viewfinder coverage while the Nikon D5500 has a 95% coverage.

2. Wireless Connection

This is one interesting feature that is becoming more necessary as the world gets more digital. The wireless connection feature allows a camera access to the internet. And via this access, you can download necessary apps off the internet.

Thankfully, both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have an inbuilt wireless connection feature. And in addition to downloading apps off the internet, you can also transfer files from your camera to an online location wirelessly.

We’d also like to add that both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 can be controlled via a smartphone. You basically just have to download the appropriate app on your smartphone and then establish a connection between the smartphone and the camera.

Once that is done, you’ll be able to take mock shots from your smartphone and even make some adjustments before you snap.

3. Articulating Screen

Now, here is another feature that isn’t exactly the same with both cameras. However, before we get into all that, let’s quickly explain what an articulating screen is.

An articulating screen is that kind of screen that can be turned or moved in certain directions without having to move the camera body. The idea of this kind of screen is for you to be able to take shots of your subjects from different interesting angles.

That said, both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have an articulating screen. However, they do not have the same kind of articulating screen. While that of the Sony a6300 is a tilting screen, that of the Nikon D5500 is a full-flex. And the basic difference is in the angles the screens can be turned.

A tilting screen can be moved upward and back down again. On the other hand, a full-flex can be rotated and cameras that come with this screen are usually used for recording videos of oneself by oneself.

You will agree with us, though, that whatever the kind of articulating screen, it is always a better idea than a fixed screen.

4. Weight

The Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 practically weigh the same. And just so you know, this isn’t very common as DSLR cameras are usually heavier than mirrorless cameras.

Anyway, the Sony a6300 weighs 0.93 pounds while the Nikon D5500 weighs 0.89 pounds. The weight difference is practically non-existent. In fact, if you decide to round up or down, they’ll both say the same thing.

That said, we must point out that the weight we have stated for both cameras is representative of the body without any additional parts.

However, if you are going to be considering the weight of a camera when you decide which camera to buy, you’ll have to factor in the lenses. This is because you’ll always need a lens when you take shots and lenses have their own weight too.

That said, because this is a comparison article, we need not go looking through all the lenses that both cameras have available to them to find out their weight. We basically just have to look at their sensor size. The camera with the larger sensor will require larger and heavier lenses.

Both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have an APS-C size sensor. The implication of this is that both cameras will require lenses of the same size and weight for the same aperture and focal length.

What this means is that while attaching a lens will affect the size of the individual cameras, it won’t affect the comparative size of the cameras.

5. Flash

One of the pillars of good photography is light. To get the perfect picture, the lighting has to be just right; neither too much nor not enough. Knowing this, we believe you’ll be able to better appreciate the work of a flash.

The inbuilt flash is a camera’s quick fix for a ‘not enough’ light situation. So, you want to shoot in the dark or in a place where the lighting isn’t very encouraging, you put on your flash and it quickly illuminates the subject as you shoot.

Both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have an inbuilt flash. However, we’ll like for you to bear in mind that the inbuilt flash is usually not the best light source for your shooting. This is why both cameras also have a flash shoe.

What this means is that you can attach an external flash to this camera which is an even better light source. In fact, you can even use it to take flash photography.


Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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6. ISO Range

This is another feature that is concerned with lighting. However, while the flash is a source of light, the ISO controls how much light the camera is able to capture at any given time.

The ISO usually exists in a range or a spectrum and both sides of the spectrum are necessary for different lighting situations.

If you are taking shots in a place where there is too much light (like out in the sun), you definitely do not need all that light. So, what you need is a low ISO.

In this setting, your camera only lets in as little light as is absolutely necessary. This will help you get a picture that is not all light and no substance.

On the other hand, if you are taking shots in a really dark place, you’ll need all the light you can get. So, you’ll have to set your camera to a high ISO so that your camera can let in all the light it needs to take that perfect picture.

Seeing as both sides of the spectrum have their uses, you’ll agree with us that a wide ISO range is a really good idea. It just allows one the room to tinker and maneuver.

That said, both cameras have the same ISO range; 100 to25600. However, that of the Sony a6300 can be expanded to 51200.

7. Sensor Resolution

This is another very important factor that determines the quality of shots you take. The sensor resolution tells us, in megapixels, whether you’ll be able to crop your photos and how large you can print them.

That said, both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have the exact same sensor resolution. 24 megapixels is pretty impressive; you’ll be able to crop your photos to reasonable details while retaining the image quality. You’ll also be able to print pictures in large sizes.

8. Microphone Port

This one has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of photos taken but with the quality of videos recorded. A good number of digital cameras are designed to be able to record videos in addition to taking photos.

This is why some of them have an inbuilt microphone. However, this inbuilt microphone doesn’t always do a good job of capturing good quality audio. Hence, the need for something better.

Both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have that something better in the form of an external microphone port. You can attach an external microphone port to either camera, allowing you record better audio.

9. RAW Support

Both the Sony a6300 can shoot RAW photos. Why is this a thing? Well, basically every digital camera can take photos in jpeg. However, aside the fact that this factor is pretty common, the reason jpeg is not really a thing is that jpeg photos are usually not of the best quality.

Jpeg photos are usually small files and usually do not take up so much storage space. However, the photos have usually been compressed which reduces the quality which the camera has already captured.

RAW photos, on the other hand, maintain their original quality. So, all things being great (talking about ISO, aperture, sensor resolution and such), you’ll be able to take decent pictures in RAW.

However, do not forget that RAW photos are large files and so will take up quite a bit of space. If you’ll be shooting in RAW, you’ll have to take extra storage devices with you because the one in the camera will fill up quite fast.

10. Face Detection

Finally, both the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500 have the face detection feature. That is, as you get ready to take pictures, either camera will recognize faces and focus on them.

This helps to reduce the possibility of having blurry photos but that’s only when you’re taking portraits. So, we understand why portrait photographers like to go for either of these cameras.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – A Sony a6300 Demonstration Video

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Unique Features

In this section, you get to see how different the Sony a6300 is from the Nikon D5500. As a result, we’ve put together the features that you’ll find in one camera but not the other. You’ll also find those features that are in both cameras but are really different.

1. Mirrorless Vs DSLR

Without a doubt, this is the most significant difference between the Sony a6300 and the Nikon D5500. In fact, this difference is kinda what affects the way the cameras work. Let’s look at this.

The Nikon D5500 is a DSLR while the Sony a6300 is a mirrorless camera. Now, the basic difference between a DSLR and a mirrorless camera is the presence/absence of a mirror and an optical viewfinder.

A DSLR is the one with both features and here is how things work. When light passes through the lens, it hits the mirror and then the light from the mirror splits kind of. Part of the light goes on to the Autofocus sensor while the other hits the optical viewfinder. The light that hits the viewfinder allows you see the subject you are focusing on.

On the other hand, a mirrorless camera does not have a mirror. So, when light passes through the lens it goes on straight to the sensor. The sensor then sends a digital image (not light now) to the electronic sensor or LCD screen. Now, because the sensor has to send a digital image and not just bounce off light, the electronic viewfinder is usually a bit slower than the optical viewfinder.

Aside how the cameras work, the presence/absence of a mirror also affects the weight of a camera. Mirrorless cameras are usually lighter than cameras of their contemporary because of the absence of a mirror. However, this does not really apply in this case as we have already seen.

2. Battery Life

This is something that DSLRs do better than mirrorless cameras. And also something that other camera brands do better than Sony.

The Sony a6300 has a 400 shots per charge battery life while you can get up to 820 shots with the Nikon D5500 before it needs to be charged.

Now, while we are not particularly excited about the Sony a6300’s battery life, we concede that battery life is one of those features that has a relative satisfactory value. That is, whether or not you’ll be satisfied with your camera’s battery life is greatly dependent on what you use the camera for.

However, for a semi-pro camera, we believe the Sony a6300 could have had a longer battery life.

3. Continuous Shooting

The continuous shooting mode allows the camera take more than one shot in one second and with one click of the shutter button.

This mode usually comes in handy if you do wildlife photography, sports photography or any kind of photography where there is bound to be a lot of movement including shooting toddlers.

The continuous shooting mode is also a good idea if you have a short frame of time to do your shooting whether because the person is super important (e.g. celebrities) or the person moves around a lot (e.g. toddlers).

That said, the Sony a6300 has the more impressive continuous shooting rate. With it, you can get up to 11 frames in one second. The Nikon D5500 doesn’t do shabbily, though. You can get 5 frames per second with that camera.

4. Video Resolution

If you’ll be doing a lot of video recording with your camera, you’ll want to pay attention to this feature. The Sony a6300 has the better video resolution. It has a 3840 by 2160 video resolution while the Nikon D5500 has a 1920 by 1080 video resolution.

The implication of this is that the Sony a6300 can take 4K videos. 4K videos are really great quality and very detailed and are so called because they have close to 4000 pixels horizontally.


Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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5. Near Field Communication

While both cameras have the inbuilt wireless connection feature via which you can transfer files to an online location, only the Sony a6300 has a near Field Communication (NFC) connection.

The NFC connection is an offline connection that allows a camera connect to another device that is also NFC enabled. This connection allows for files to be wirelessly transferred to an off-camera device offline.

6. Weather Sealing

The Sony a6300 is both dust and water resistant while the Nikon D5500 is not weather sealed at all.

The implication of this is that the Sony a6300 is partially protected against both dust and water. So, while you might not want to use this camera in a desert or while submerged in water, it’ll be fine with a little bit of dust and water exposure.

On the other hand, you’ll have to be extra careful with the Nikon D5500 seeing as it is protected against any of the elements.

7. Available Lenses

Finally, the Sony a6300 has 102 lenses available to it while the Nikon D5500 has 302. Furthermore, neither of these cameras has an image stabilization feature.

The implication of this is that photos taken with either camera could come out looking blurry if the camera is jostled mid shot. To prevent this, both cameras have optical stabilization lenses available to them; the Sony a6300 with 23 and the Nikon D5500 with 88.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – A Nikon D5500 Comparison Video

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Unique Pros

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Pros Of The Sony a6300

  • First off, the Nikon D5500 is both dust and water resistant.
  • Furthermore, this camera is 6 frames per second faster than the Nikon D5500.
  • Also, this camera has the better video resolution and can record 4K videos.
  • The Sony a6300 has an electronic viewfinder with a 2359k dot viewfinder resolution.
  • Furthermore, this camera has the Near Field Communication connection feature.
  • It also has more focus points (425) than the Nikon D5500 (39).
  • While both cameras have the same ISO range, that of the Sony a6300 can be expanded to 51200.
  • Finally, the Sony a6300 has a 100% viewfinder coverage.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Pros Of The Nikon D5500

  • First off, the Nikon D5500 has a longer battery life than the Sony a6300.
  • Furthermore, this camera has a better screen resolution than the Sony a6300.
  • It also has a longer flash range (12 meters) than the Sony a6300 (6 meters).
  • The Nikon D5500 supports the use of the UHS-I kind of memory card which allows for photos and videos to move to storage in ultra-high speeds.
  • Furthermore, the screen of this camera is touch sensitive and is larger than that of the Sony a6300 by 0.2 inches.
  • Finally, this camera has an inbuilt feature that allows it to time-lapse record.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Unique Cons

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Cons Of The Sony a6300

  • First off, this camera does not have a very impressive battery life.
  • This camera also does not support the use of the UHS-I kind of memory card.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Cons Of The Nikon D5500

  • First off, the Nikon D5500 is not weather sealed in any form.
  • Also, this camera cannot record 4K videos.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Common Pros

 

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

Viewfinder We like that this camera has a viewfinder because it is better for framing than the LCD screen. And just for emphasis, this camera has an electronic viewfinder. Same as the Sony a6300. However, that of the Nikon D5500 is an optical viewfinder.
Wireless Connection Furthermore, this camera has an inbuilt wireless connection and so can gain access to the internet. Apps can be downloaded and files uploaded via this access. Same as the Sony a6300.
Articulating Screen The Sony a6300 has a tilting screen which can be moved to certain degrees upward. This’ll afford you the opportunity to shoot one subject from different interesting angles. The Nikon D5500 has a full-flex screen which can be rotated. As a result, you can use this camera to take photos of or video record yourself by yourself.
Flash Also, this camera has an inbuilt flash which is a quick solution for a poor light situation. In addition to that, an external flash can be attached to this camera which is a better source of light and is a good idea of you are doing flash photography. Same as the Sony a6300.
Sensor Resolution We like the 24 megapixel sensor resolution of this camera. Photos taken with this camera can be cropped to certain details while maintaining their original quality. Same as the Sony a6300.
Microphone Port An external microphone can also be attached to this camera and is a better idea than the inbuilt microphone if you’ll be recording videos. Same as the Sony a6300.
RAW Support The Sony a6300 can shoot photos in RAW. RAW photos usually retain their original quality unlike jpeg. Same as the Sony a6300.
Face Detection Finally this camera is able to detect and focus on faces as you get ready to take shots. This makes the camera a good idea if you’ll be taking portraits. Same as the Sony a6300.

Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Common Cons

 

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

Image Stabilization This camera does not have an inbuilt image stabilization feature. And as a result you might have blurry photos if the camera is jostled mid-shot. Same as the Sony a6300.
Headphone Port Also, this camera does not have a headphone port. So, you’ll have to make use of the inbuilt speaker which isn’t the absolute best idea. Same as the Sony a6300.

Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – What People Think About Both

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

It is interesting to note that one customer referred to this camera as a jack of all trades. This is most definitely because the camera takes really good photos and also really good videos. The 4K video recording thing is something that gets a lot of vloggers going. Add this to the tilting screen and a lot of people are basically sold. The sensor resolution and the fact that this camera has a silent shutter are also reasons people like this camera. And the latter is the reason people use this camera in places or situations where solemnity is expected. People seem kinda excited that despite the fact that this is a DSLR, it is still pretty lightweight. A good number of customers also agree that the Nikon D5500 makes for a really good beginner camera because, apparently, it is pretty easy to work your way around. People also seem excited about the quality of pictures they’ve been getting with this camera and with the way the sensor resolution and ISO lineup, we understand why.
The absence of an in body image stabilization feature, while not constituting a deal breaker, is an issue for some people. However, there have been complaints about the lack of weather sealing. Apparently, this just makes shooting shots a tad too risky.

Sony a6300 Vs Nikon D5500

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Sony a6300 Vs D5500 – Our Take

Sony a6300

Nikon D5500

We believe the Sony a6300 is a right fit for someone who is looking to move beyond the beginner phase but is not quite at the professional level yet. It could also make for a good backup camera. We believe this is possible because this camera has a really decent ISO range that can even be expanded if be. The sensor resolution might also be a step up from what you’ve been used to. As for the video resolution, you’ll agree with us that this will spice up your video recording a little bit. The Nikon D5500is a good idea if you are just starting out with this photography thing. It takes really good photos and while it cannot record 4K videos, it does record good enough videos. We also believe you’ll like the weight of this camera despite the fact that it is a DSLR.
Notwithstanding, there are a number of things we wish had been added to this camera like a headphone port. However, if you do not consider this a deal breaker, get the Sony a6300 now! Notwithstanding, there are also a number of thing we wish were added to this camera like weather sealing. However, if this isn’t a deal breaker for you, get the Nikon D5500 now!

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