D600 vs d7100

Started Apr 26, 2013 | Discussions thread
chlamchowder
Senior MemberPosts: 2,080Gear list
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Matching up for equivalent looking images
In reply to lock, May 2, 2013

With equivalent focal lengths, APS-C is about a stop behind FF both in terms of DOF control and ISO performance. So, ignoring resolution for now (which I think FF has an advantage in), here's a chart made with getting low light capability/DOF equivalence in mind:

  • Red = FF has advantage (something DX can't even do), but at a high cost
  • Blue = FF has cost advantage
  • Green: APS-C has cost advantage

Ignoring shallow DOF/low light capability that DX can't do (because there aren't any f/1.0 primes or f/2.0 zooms floating around to match the FX f/1.4 primes and f/2.0 zooms), we have FX and DX trading blows as you go down the chart.

  • If you just want to get a 12mm FF equivalent field of view, the Sigma 8-16mm will get you there for a lower price than the Sigma 12-24 on FX.
  • If you want a moderately fast 75mm or 85mm portrait lens, the Nikon 50/1.4 on DX will get you there for less than a 85/1.8 on FX. But FX wins if you want a fast 50mm.
  • If you want a low cost standard zoom, FX wins, and wins tremendously because of low priced f/2.8 options like the Tamron 28-75/2.8 that DX can't compete with. There's a Sigma 18-35/1.8 coming out soon, but that's a pretty limited focal length range and will probably cost more.

I didn't put a chart up for telephoto ranges, but here's the jist of what would happen:

  • Just getting a longer focal length: DX wins hands down, because of the crop factor. Any lens you can pick up for FX just gets longer on DX. 
  • Getting low light performance/DOF control: FX wins hands down, because f/2.8 lenses often can't be matched by f/2 lenses on DX.
  • The only exception is that the 200mm f/2 does allow DX to match FX's 300mm f/2.8 for less ($5400 vs. $5800), but a complicating factor is that an old 300/2.8 AF-I can deliver that on FX for $2000. 

So in summary:

  • With new lenses, FX and DX trade blows. For someone like the OP who probably just wants to get to certain focal lengths without too much concern about DOF or low light capability, DX provides a cost advantage.
  • With old lenses, FX has an advantage because of used lenses.
  • FX gives low light/DOF control abilities not available with DX, but often at a really high price.
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Sony Alpha DSLR-A580 Nikon D600 Sony DT 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 SAM +8 more
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