How to Reset a Nikon D3500

Here’s a guide on how to reset a Nikon D3500 back to factory settings. This can be useful if you’re troubleshooting an issue, selling or trading-in your D3500, or just want to start again with a clean slate of settings.

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Whether you’re troubleshooting an issue, selling or trading in your D3500, or just want to start again with a clean slate of settings, resetting a Nikon D3500 back to factory settings can be a useful step.

The Nikon D3500 has a few different types of reset. The Reset all options setting wipes all settings back to their factory defaults. There are also more targeted methods that focus only on one of two categories: setup options and shooting options.

Here’s a rundown of the options for resetting a D3500 and what the options do. I’ve also included tables with the defaults for individual settings in case you just want to reset specific settings.

Reset Nikon D3500 Back to Factory Settings

There is a nuclear option, which resets all the shooting and setup settings on a D3500.

It is functionally the same as using the “Reset setup options” and the “Reset shooting menu” simultaneously.

This function is located at the very end of the Setup menu options. Scroll down to the bottom–it’s the second-to-last setting, right above the firmware version menu option.

Setup Menu (wrench icon) > Reset all settings

Reset Setup Options

This is a more targeted approach that resets everything under the Setup Menu but leaves everything under the Shooting Menu untouched.

You can find this function under:

Setup Menu (wrench icon) > Reset setup options

These are the settings it affects. I’ve included the default options here in case you just want to change individual settings back to factory defaults.

Menu Option Default Setting
Date stamp OFF
Time zone and date UTC-1 / Date Format (
Language English (regional variations)
Monitor brightness 0
Info display format Graphic
Auto info display ON
Auto off timers NORM
Self-timer 10s / 1
Image comment OFF
Copyright information OFF
Beep L
Flicker reduction AUTO
Buttons Fn (ISO) / AEL-AFL (AE/AF lock) / Shutter release AEL (OFF) / AF activation (ON)
Rangefinder OFF
Manual focus ring in AF mode ON
File number sequence OFF
Storage folder 100
File naming DSC
HDMI Output resolution (AUTO) / Device control (ON)
Airplane mode OFF
Send to smart device (auto) OFF
Bluetooth OFF
Slot empty release lock LOCK

Reset Shooting Menu

This resets everything under the Setup Menu but leaves everything under the shooting menu untouched.

You can find this option under:

Shooting Menu (camera icon) > Rest shooting menu

These are the settings it affects. I’ve included the default options here in case you just want to change individual settings back to factory defaults.

Menu Option Default Setting
Image quality NORM
Image size L
ISO sensitivity settings (100) / Auto ISO (ON) / Max sensitivity (25600) / Minimum shutter speed (AUTO)
White balance AUTO
Set Picture Control SD
Color space sRGB
Active D-Lighting ON
Noise reduction ON
Vignette control NORMAL
Auto distortion control OFF
Focus mode Viewfinder (AF-A) / Live view-movie (AF-S)
AF-area mode Viewfinder (Auto-area AF) / Live view-movie (Wide-area AF)
Built-in AF-assist illuminator ON
Metering Matrix metering
Flash cntrl for built-in flash TTL
Optical VR ON
Movie settings Frame size-frame rate (1080p60) / Movie quality (NORM) / Microphone (A) / Wind noise reduction (OFF) / Manual movie settings (OFF)

Things Worth Knowing

  • None of these reset options will roll back firmware to factory settings. If you’ve updated the firmware, the newer firmware will remain in place.
  • They also do not format the memory card or delete photos or videos. (Of course, if you want to be extra-safe, there’s no harm in downloading your photos and videos first or removing the SD card during the reset.)
David Coleman / Photographer
by David Coleman

I'm a professional freelance travel photographer based in Washington DC. Seven continents, up mountains, underwater, and a bunch of places in between. My images have appeared in numerous publications, and you can check out some of my travel photography here. More »

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