Best Memory Cards for the Nikon D3300

Looking for SD cards that work well in the Nikon D3300? Here are some practical recommendations.
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The new Nikon D3300 has some pretty impressive video and photo capabilities in a relatively inexpensive package. But if you use a memory card that isn’t fast enough, you’ll find your videos stop recording part way.

Nikon issues its own guidelines for officially approved memory cards for the Nikon D3300, but it’s pretty hard to make sense of. They’re buried on page 310 in the technical notes section of the Nikon D3300 instruction manual. They look like this.

Nikon D3300 Memory Card Recommendations - Official

I don’t find that especially helpful. So I’ve taken those official recommendations from Nikon and translated them into practical recommendations below that cut through all the confusing jargon that memory card manufacturers use in their marketing.

In general, the Nikon D3300 will accept SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards. All of those types look exactly the same–the difference is in the amount of memory. SD refers to cards up to 2GB in size. Now that memory card prices have come down and you can buy very good 32GB cards for $15, there’s no good reason to be buying a 2GB card if you camera supports larger ones. So I’d recommend sticking with SDHC or SDXC for the Nikon D3300. SDHC refers to cards that are 4GB up through 32GB. SDXC refers to cards that are 64GB or above. And with the D3300 shooting photos at over 24 MP, you’ll probably find a card that’s at least 32 GB will give you more flexibility.

If you’re doing video recording, you’ll need a card that’s designated as class 6 or higher. The reason is that when recording video the camera needs to write a lot of data to the card quickly. If you’re card isn’t able to write data fast enough, the video recording will stop. The current crop of memory cards are all class 10, so you’re better off going with one of them than searching around for an old class 6 card.

So here’s a mix of recommended memory cards that will work well in the Nikon D3300 and that are reasonably priced, readily available, and good value. This list isn’t exhaustive, and there are both faster and slower SD cards that will also work, as well as smaller and larger ones. Because of the similarities between the two cameras, these are essentially the same memory card recommendations for the Nikon D5300 as well.

Recommended Memory Cards for the Nikon D3300

These aren't necessarily the fastest SD cards on the market, but they're fast enough for this camera. It's also not designed to be a comprehensive list of every SD card that will work.

My emphasis here is on cards that meet these criteria: fast enough for all the features of this camera; from a reputable and reliable brand; readily available at retailers; and good value for money. If you want to use a faster, fancier card you can, but you won't see any extra benefit in doing so while you're operating the camera (but you might see some faster speeds when downloading the photos to a computer, depending on your computer and memory card reader combination).

SanDisk Ultra U1 UHS-I

SanDisk 256GB Ultra SDXC UHS-I Memory...
  • Fast for better pictures and Full HD video(2) | (2)Full HD (1920x1080) video support may vary based upon...
  • Great choice for compact to mid-range point-and-shoot cameras

The SanDisk Ultra line is their cost-effective mid-range option. The latest versions of the Ultra cards are much faster than older versions, and it's a good basic option for cameras that don't demand too much of their SD card. The next level up--the Extreme cards--are also a good option, but the Ultra cards are often priced slightly lower. They're usually very easy to find in stores, too.

SanDisk recycles its model names, and you can still find older, slower versions. This latest version of the Ultra card is rated for U1 for video recording and uses a UHS-I interface.

It comes in sizes ranging from 32GB through 256GB.

Buy at Amazon

Lexar 633x U1 UHS-I

Lexar Professional 633x 256GB SDXC UHS-I...
  • High-speed, Class 10 performance leverages UHS-I (U1 or U3 depends on capacity) technology for a read...
  • Capture high quality images of stunning 1080p full-HD, 3D, and 4K video

The Lexar 633x range has been one of the mainstays of Lexar's SD cards for a while now. There are now faster cards available, but this one is again fast enough for this camera while also representing good value for money.

One distinctive thing about this range is that they're available from 32GB up through `TB.

Buy at Amazon.

PNY High Performance U1 UHS-I

PNY 256GB Elite-X Class 10 U3 V30 SDXC...
  • Class 10, U3, V30 speed rating, with read speeds up to 100MB/s
  • Class 10, U3, V30 rating delivers speed and performance for burst mode HD photography and 4K Ultra HD...

PNY as a brand isn't as well known as some others, but they've been around a long time and make very good memory cards that are usually very competitively priced and good value.

This particular model is available in sizes ranging from 16GB to 128GB.

Buy at Amazon

Kingston Canvas Select Plus V30 UHS-I

Kingston 256GB SDXC Canvas Select Plus...
  • Faster speeds — Class 10 UHS-I speeds up to 100MB/s.
  • Capture in full HD & 4K UHD video (1080P) — the advanced UHS-I interface makes the card ideal for...

Kingston is another brand that isn't as well known as some of the others, but they've been making reliable memory cards for a very long time. As a brand, they don't tend to focus on the cutting edge speeds but rather on reliable and good-value memory cards.

This particular card (model SDS2 Canvas Select Plus) isn't the fastest in Kingston's range, but it's fast enough to work well in this camera. It's available in sizes from 16GB through 128GB.

Buy at Amazon.

Delkin Devices Advantage V30 UHS-I

Delkin Devices 256GB Advantage SDXC...
  • Supports 4K & Full HD 1080p Video Recording at High Frame Rates
  • RAW Continuous-Shooting Approved

Delkin Devices have been around for a long time but have been relatively quiet in recent years. But they're freshed their entire lineup of cards recently to simplify the range and bring the cards up to current specs.

The Advantage card is rated to V30 and has a UHS-I interface. It currently comes in sizes up to 512GB.

Buy at Amazon or B&H Photo.

Transcend V30 UHS-I

Transcend TS128GSDC500S-E 128GB UHS-I U3...
  • Compliant with UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) and UHS Video Speed Class 30 (V30) standards
  • Up to 256GB storage capacity

Transcend isn't as well known as SanDisk or Lexar, but they've been making solid, reliable memory cards for a long while now and their SD cards are often competitively priced.

This particular card is faster than this camera needs, but it is still a good option. It's available in sizes from 64GB up through 256GB.

Buy at Amazon.

Other Brands

There are also a lot of smaller, mostly unknown brands. In general, I'd recommend sticking to a brand you know and trust or one of the brands I've mentioned on this page because they have well-established reputations for putting out high-quality cards. Some of the other lesser-known brands might work, but they also might not be all they claim to be. The ones above should give a good selection of ones you can find fairly easily at retailers near you.

Faster Cards

If you're looking to use a faster card, take a look at the ones that I've subjected to my independent SD card speed tests.

Avoiding Counterfeit Memory Cards

It’s worth buying from a reputable manufacturer. There are counterfeit cards on the market that often pop up on from shady dealers. It’s also not a bad idea to have a spare on hand. Memory cards are remarkably resilient things but like any electronic device they do fail from time to time.

Images and product information from Amazon PA-API were last updated on 2021-09-22 at 11:39. Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon Site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

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