How to Delete Photos on Your Nikon D5300 - dummies

How to Delete Photos on Your Nikon D5300

By Julie Adair King

You have three options for erasing pictures from a memory card when it’s in your Nikon D5300. One note before you begin: None of the Delete features erase pictures that you protect. To erase protected photos, you must first remove the file protection.

How to delete images one at a time

During picture playback, you can use the Delete button to erase photos and movie files. But the process varies depending on the current playback mode:

  • In single-image view—that is, you’re viewing each photo or movie one at a time—press the Delete button.

  • In thumbnails view (displaying 4, 9, or 72 thumbnails), use the Multi Selector or Command dial to highlight the picture you want to erase, and then press Delete.

  • In calendar view, highlight the date that contains the image. Then press the Zoom Out button to jump to the thumbnail list, highlight a specific image, and press Delete.

You then see a message asking whether you really want to erase the picture. If you do, press Delete again. To cancel the process, press the Playback button.

By default, the camera displays your photo briefly after the shot is recorded. (You enable or disable this feature via the Image Review option on the Playback menu.) During the instant review period, you can press the Delete button to trash the file immediately. But you have to be quick or else the camera returns to shooting mode.

How to delete all files

Open the Playback menu, select Delete, and press OK. Then highlight All and press OK. The camera asks you to verify that you want to delete all your pictures and movies; select Yes and press OK.


If your memory card contains multiple folders, these steps delete only pictures in the folder that is currently selected via the Playback Folder option on the Playback menu.

How to delete a batch of selected photos

When you want to get rid of more than a few files—but not erase all pictures and movies on the card—don’t waste time erasing each file, one at a time. Instead, you can tag multiple files for deletion and then take them all out to the trash at one time.

To start, display the Playback menu, highlight Delete, and then press OK. You then see the screen which offers two options for selecting specific files to erase:

  • Selected: Use this option if the files you want to delete weren’t all taken on the same day. Highlight Selected, and press the Multi Selector right to display a screen of thumbnails. Use the Multi Selector to place the yellow highlight box over the first file you want to delete and then press the Zoom Out button. A trash can appears in the upper-right corner of the thumbnail.


    If you change your mind, press the Zoom Out button again to remove the Delete tag. To undo deletion for all selected photos, press the Playback button.

    For a closer look at the selected image, press and hold the Zoom In button. When you release the button, the display returns to normal thumbnails view.

    One important note: Images that you tag with the Delete rating are not officially marked for the trash heap. When you view your files, you see the Delete rating symbol; when you select the photo via the Delete menu, you see the symbol marked Delete File. That’s the symbol that triggers the camera to dump the file.

  • Select Date: Use this option to quickly delete any record of that day. After choosing Select Date, press the Multi Selector right to display a list of dates. Next, highlight a date and press the Multi Selector right. A check mark appears in the box next to the date, tagging for deletion all images taken on that day. To remove the check mark, press the Multi Selector right again.

    Can’t remember what photos are associated with the selected date? Try this:

    • To display thumbnails of all images taken on the selected date, press the Zoom Out button.

    • To temporarily view the selected thumbnail at full-size view, press the Zoom In button.

    • To return to the date list, press the Zoom Out button again.


After tagging files for deletion or specifying a date to delete, press OK to move forward. You see a confirmation screen; select Yes and press OK.

You have one alternative way to quickly erase all files shot on a specific date: In the Calendar display mode, highlight the date and then press the Delete button. You see the standard confirmation screen; press Delete again to wrap up.