The Best Photos Start with Best Buy: Nikon D3300 DSLR Rocks

The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Nikon D3300 DSLR camera from Best Buy at a reduced price or for free. All opinions on the product are my own.

I’ve always loved photography. I took a few years of photography classes back in high school…. Back with old school SLRs and actual film we developed ourselves in the dark room. {Do I sound super old yet? Please tell me someone else remembers SLRs before they were digital?} I really enjoyed it – but of course, times change. When I was in my early 20’s I went through a few different point and shoot cameras. They worked fine for fun pics of nights out with friends. But now, as a mom, and a blogger, it’s important to me to get more serious about the quality of the pictures that I take, which means I totally needed to upgrade to a better camera.

Nikon D3300 DSLR from Best Buy

Since a DSLR camera is no small purchase, I wanted to make sure I was getting one that would be a good fit for me. I don’t need a super high-end camera like my friends who were professional photographers. I wanted something that would be a good entry-level camera, that I could learn quickly, but that had enough cool features to grow with me as my skills and technique improve. I had a lot of recommendations, but I knew I wanted a Nikon, since I’d always been a fan of their point and shoots. A couple of suggestions I’d gotten from other bloggers and photographers for when shopping for a DSLR:

  • Hold a lot of different cameras. Try out any that your friends have. Go into a store like Best Buy and pick up a bunch of them. They might look pretty similar, but they’ll have slightly different body shapes, weights, and design. You want something that feels comfortable to you.
  • While holding the different cameras, take a minute to look at where the different buttons and functions are. Find one that makes sense to you.
  • Determine what you’ll be using the camera for. Do you need something that takes great action shots? Something to capture indoor family moments in low light? Will you travel with this camera a lot? If you travel, you might want something that can take panoramic shots. How important is video to you – do you want the ability to film in HD? What about size of prints – the more megapixels the camera has, the bigger you can enlarge your photos without them getting blurry.

With all of this info in mind, I had just started the search for a new camera, for the new year. {I started by reading the DSLR buying guide on BestBuy.com.}  Then one day, I got an uh-may-zing surprise package delivered….

A photo posted by Meagan Paullin (@sunandsipcups) on

How gorgeous is this bad boy? It’s the Nikon D3300 DSLR camera from Best Buy – and it’s even in RED! All of the cameras I’d looked at previously were traditional black, and I love this bright bold color. It was a surprise holiday gift from my best buddies over at Best Buy and the awesome people at Nikon. Best Christmas present I got this year, for sure! And seriously – it had everything I was looking for. Like, everything. Watch this video to get a quick look…

Right away I knew it was right for me, as soon as I picked it up. It feels so comfortable in my hand – part of it is the shape, part of is the non-slip type material where I grip it, and part of it is the light weight. I wanted a lighter camera for two reasons: one, I have arthritis in my hands that’s been getting worse the past few months. That makes it hard for me to hold a heavier camera for very long. Two, I wanted something that was easy to take with me on the go – whether that’s a day at the park, out in the garden, or when I travel. This camera is one of the lightest that I’ve found.

And it can do all of the things I mentioned above – it’s awesome in low light. It has a red-eye correction tool for family photos. It can take beautiful panoramic photos. It’s got 24 megapixels, so I can create huge canvas prints without distortion. It’s got an optical image stabilization feature, to reduce blurring, which is obviously helpful to me with my arthritis. It’s design is even cold and shock resistant, to protect it from damage. {You can also get a Geek Squad protection plan for your camera too, if you purchase it at Best Buy. Love Geek Squad.}

This camera was also pretty easy for me to use right away. It takes gorgeous pictures even on the auto setting, and has lots of really fun tools that you can use too, like filters, and special effects like fisheye. So it’s a great camera for a beginner. But, I have a couple of pro photographer friends – and they were impressed with this too, so it obviously is a great choice for anyone, and will grow with you as you gain experience. Plus, there are lots of cool lenses and accessories you can add too, to make it even more versatile.

Nikon WU-1A from Best Buy

And speaking of accessories…. You might notice in the picture of my camera above, there’s a little gadget in a package on the left side. It is a super amazing addition to your camera, it’s the Nikon WU-1A Wireless Mobile Adaptor. This connects via Wi-Fi to your phone or tablet, so you can instantly transfer your photos where you want them. How handy is that, right? Not only is it a huge time-saver, but can you imagine how much more awesome my Instagram account is going to be now? Super excited.

Nikon D3300 DSLR in Red from Best Buy

The Nikon D3300 DSLR from Best Buy comes in three colors – black, grey, and red, so you can get one that fits your personality. {Clearly the bold one is the perfect fit for me :)} They’re on sale right now – you can save $150 on the camera, and you get two free bonus gifts: The Nikon WU-1A, and a free Shutterfly photo book. Check it out online at BestBuy.com, or stop into your local store to try it out for yourself. And, if you want to read more of the technical information about the camera, be sure to read the specifications section online – I’m not as fluent in technical language, I’m more about how it actually fits into my life, and this is perfect for me! But I know many of you are much savvy about that stuff than I am – so I’ll let you check it out. You can also read some of the reviews…

97% of Best Buy customers would recommend the Nikon D3300 to a friend (144 out of 148) – Click to Tweet this!

I never buy an important product without reading the reviews, and those numbers are pretty darn impressive! Now… Seeing is believing, right? This post gave you lots of info on what this camera does, why it rocks, and how you can use it. Later today, I’ll have a post going up to show some examples of photos it takes. I’ll share the photos totally unedited, straight from the camera. I’ll try to use as many different settings as I can – different things like landscape and portrait settings, filters, special effects, indoors and out. Then I’ll put together a big post with examples of photos, as a beginner with this camera, so you can get an idea of how awesome it is even when you’re not a pro :) Stay tuned!

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