Nikon D7000Nikon D3000Nikon D40Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX DC HSMTokina AF 16-50mm f/2.8 AT-X Pro DX Tamron SP AF17-50mm F/2.8 XR Di-II LDTokina AF 50-135mm f/2.8 AT-X Pro DXNikon 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S DX VR EDNikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED IF AF-S VRNikon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DXNikon 85mm f/3.5 DX VR Micro-NIKKORTamron AF 18-250mm F/3.5-6.3 Di-II LDNikon SB-600 Speed light
falconeyes: Strange, DPR gives the A99 a better low iso rating than the full frame cameras w/o light absorbing SLT mirror and same sensor tech. Must clearly be a mistake. Moreover, DPR finds no nice words for the A99 AF system. Still gets the top score. Strange I find.
More than just strange, and more like an early Christmas present to Sony and their fans! Maybe the DPR staff does not care, but at some level they must know these kind of overreaching scores, awards and and recommendations for a camera with some major shortcomings (such as entry level APS-C- like AF performance in a $2800 FF camera body), only hurts their credibility as camera reviewers. I know it has with me.
With the recent price drop announcements* for the Nikon D800 body to $2799.95, and the Nikon D600 24-85 VR kit now reduced by $700, to only $1999.95, it is obvious to any reasonable person that the Sony a99 is WAY overpriced at $2800 for the body only. A thousand dollars to high!
How DPR ignored these huge price discrepancies in their value rating for the a99 is anyone's guess, but unless Sony substantially reduces the exorbitant price on the a99, they will not be able to sell very many of them, DPR gold award notwithstanding.
marike6: Sony made a big gamble by dropping the OVF on all their cameras. A top level pentaprism OVF will always be the state-of-the-art, while in one or two years time, the A99 EVF will be old technology, superseded by new models. Just ask Fuji X-Pro1 users how they felt when the X-E1 came out with a higher specified EVF. So perhaps one of the negatives of adopting an evolving technology like EVF is an increased need to upgrade. Whereas a 100% OVF of a 5D3, D800 or A900 will always be about as good as it gets.
This is an excellent point that I had not really considered until your post! Sony is enjoying extremely high profit margins with their SLT cameras, but their cameras low resale values makes upgrading to a new camera with an improved EVF even more costly for Sony SLT owners. I think I'll stick with my Nikon DSLRs with their optical viewfinders that are not obsolete and worthless in a few years.
NikonScavenger: It's garishly ugly... but that isn't really an issue. It has a built in EVF, hot shoe, and probably wouldn't look comical with an F-mount lens attached to it--that and you could probably still wield the camera semi-effectively with most reasonably sized lenses.
I have a GX1 with the LVF2, despite having invested in Nikon DSLRs.
Bigger sensor and more lenses. You can't convince me that the tiny little sensor of the entire V line is worth investing in. Or that there are no lenses for it, despite it being now a full year since the system was introduced.
Is anyone that brand conscious that they wouldn't buy a mirrorless camera just because of brand name? Because obviously Sony and Panasonic/Olympus have better offerings in the segment.
Not better in focusing though! I don't think it is a stretch to say that in decent light, the V1 and V2 can focus faster and more accurately than 95% of DSLRs in the world, but you have to experience it to believe it. As for image quality, I think this article proves the V1 is very capable.http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2012/12/05/the-nikon-18-5-f1-8-cx-lens-review-for-the-1-series-by-craig-litten/
Jeff Morris: I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt, these Fuji lenses are built to a very high order. The 18-55 f2.8-4 is all metal, built like a Zeiss or Leica lens. Fuji builds many Hassy bodies and lenses, a highly under rated company. My 18-55 has a build and feel at least as good as my Nikkor pro glass had.
So, anyone out there that doubts the quality of the Fuji lenses needs to go to the store and handle Fuji glass. You will realize in short order it is nothing like the Plastic stuff we get from Nikon and Canon, and forget Sigma and Tammy, it's in a complete different league.
The Nikon's CX mount lenses (for V1,V2,F1,F2), have machined aluminum barrels, as do most Sony NEX lenses, so just handling the Fuji lenses proves nothing. I would want to see a lens test before I agree with your assessment of the Fuji lenses.
IrishhAndy: Happy with my D700. This camera has too many compromises for me and the lens selection is poor.
How can the lens selection be poor when Nikon has the largest selection of compatible (F mount), lenses of any brand in the world? For someone who claims to owns a Nikon D700 you don't seem to know much about Nikon lenses. Maybe you are spending too much time in the M4/3 forum??
mckracken88: the pentax k30 has almost as good noise levels, inbody stabilization but "only" 16mp.
And costs like, an arm and a leg, less.
There is more to image quality than sensor noise levels. One of the most compelling reasons for professionals to use full frame cameras is the access to professional quality lenses with better optical qualities and with less distortion than APS-C can provide. Unfortunately, Nikon only has one professional zoom lens, (17-55 f2.8), designed for APS-C sized sensors. If you want to use professional lenses on the format they are designed for, full frame is the "must have" solution.
steelhead3: I noticed that the dim viewfinder wasn't discussed other than to say that the 600 experience is the same as the 800 and 4. Having tried the camera out in the store, I was impressed with its shutter and responsiveness. The viewfinder dimness was a real let down however.
Due to the electronic overlay screen, the viewfinder is darker when the camera is turned off. Turn on the camera next time!
jonikon: For some inexplicable reason in their evaluation of the AF settings of the D600, DPR fails to understand the advantage of software driven settings that allow the setting to be saved under the User Settings 1,2 on the mode dial, as opposed to hardware controls that would make that impossible. I feel DPR should at least point out the advantage of storing the AF settings that have been moved from a hard control to a software control.
Here is the quoted excerpts from page 11- Handling.:"This 'simplification' comes at a cost, however. Specifically, it makes switching between AF-S and AF-C, and indeed changing AF pattern mode, slower than it was Nikon's previous generation DSLRs. Using the D300S, for example, a quick flick of the left thumb is all it took to go from single AF to continuous, and a quick flick of the rear lever would switch from single-point AF to multi-pattern. With the D600 (and the D800 and D4) there's an extra step - a button press - in both cases. " - DPReview
Your still missing the point that the hard switches come at a cost as well, which is that they can not be stored in the U1 or U2 settings, which cripples the settings option in this regard. Given the choice, I will take the software over the hard button approach so I can set up my U1 an U2 with different AF options. BTW, I own a D7000 which uses a similar method of selecting AF mode as the D600 and I find it quick and easy to change AF settings, even with my eye to the viewfinder.
For some inexplicable reason in their evaluation of the AF settings of the D600, DPR fails to understand the advantage of software driven settings that allow the setting to be saved under the User Settings 1,2 on the mode dial, as opposed to hardware controls that would make that impossible. I feel DPR should at least point out the advantage of storing the AF settings that have been moved from a hard control to a software control.
jonikon: I'm not impressed at all with the image quality of the Oly XZ-2. I see a lot of smearing of details, very poor IQ at high ISOs, a de-centered lens causing OOF areas, poor color rendition, poor micro-contrast, lots of distortion, etc.
Why in the world would anyone buy this camera when the excellent Sony RX-100 can be had for about the same price and blows the XZ-2's image quality away! This camera would not be desirable even if it was priced at the current XZ1 price of $200, IMO.
Years ago Fujifilm had the best straight out of camera JPEG colors, and still does. I used to like Olympus JPEG colors as well, but not anymore as they have changed for the worse, IMO. I also don't understand the "It's not a Sony" remark. Smart buyers don't reject a better product for the same price because of the name on the outside. That would be just shooting yourself in the foot foolish!
I'm not impressed at all with the image quality of the Oly XZ-2. I see a lot of smearing of details, very poor IQ at high ISOs, a de-centered lens causing OOF areas, poor color rendition, poor micro-contrast, lots of distortion, etc.
The K-30 may be a very good camera (leaving the reliability issue of Pentax DSLRs aside), but it only makes up one half of the image quality equation, with the other half being the lens in front of the sensor. Unfortunately the Pentax DSLRs suffer from a lot of cheap lenses with poor optical qualities, or very expensive lenses with acceptable, but not exceptional optical qualities. For example, the Pentax SMC 16-50mm f/2.8 lens is over $1400 at reputable dealers like B&H photo, but this lens only gets 3 stars out of 5 (or 60%), for optical quality from the Photozone lens review. For value and the ultimate in optical lens quality, Nikon is a much better choice for lenses than Pentax, which makes a Nikon DSLR the better choice for a camera.
This V2 has all the improvements I was hoping for over the V1, ( with the possible exception of image quality which is an unknown at this time). The built-in flash is more compact than the SB-N5 add on flash for the V1 and the large grip will actually make using the FT-1 adapter with DX lenses manageable. Some call the V2 ugly only because of the protruding EVF/flash unit, but from the perspective of a photographer, it as a thing of beauty!
Skipper494: Full frame sensors in compact cameras are long overdue. 1" and m4/3 are band aids. We had 35mm film in little cameras like my Chinon Bon Ami. Miniaturisation is not a problem. Having space for human sized controls is. 1" and m4/3 are just a way for the industry to gradually introduce larger sensors and milk as much money along the way.
It's already here. It's called the Sony RX1. Not very pocket-able though.
I own a Nikon D7000 and love the image quality from the 16MP APS-C Sony sensor. However, the size of the D7000 and lenses is often bothersome and attracts too much attention so when Adorama started selling the Nikon V1 with 10-30mm lens for $399 I jumped on it. So what do I think of the 1" sensor's IQ? I found it is surprisingly good, with high ISO image quality better than my previous DSLR (Sony a700), and a huge step up from a small sensor pocket camera. I don't agree at all with the disparaging remarks about the image quality from some posters on the forums regarding the 1" sensor. The IQ of the Nikon System 1 cameras is very good indeed, and more than adequate for most camera buyers in the price range of the J1/J2. Now that Sony is on board with the great marketing success of the Sony RX100, I now believe the 1" sensor will displace the current tiny sensor used in current pocket cameras, and may even displace the m4/3 format at some point.
jonikon: The worst of the lot by far is the E 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 PZ OSS, which does not even come close to doing an APS-C sensor justice. Only the very center is reasonably sharp and it quickly gets softer going out from there. I was surprised how much distortion the E 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 PZ OSS has, even at 50mm. I have pocket cameras that have better lenses than that!
Yep, the distortion is very obvious even without downloading the originals,(which I also did to check for sharpness). Just look at the photo of the guy in the red shirt holding the wine glass. Now look at the vertical elements in the scene and you will see the high degree of distortion even here at 50mm. Given a decent lens, there should be very little or no discernible distortion in at 50mm on an APS-C senso.. Also in the window sill there is a lot of veiling flare, which reminds me of the problem of using my old Minolta lenses on the a700. Not a very good performance for this particular Sony lens, I'm afraid.Sony needs to do a lot of work to improve their NEX lens quality.
The worst of the lot by far is the E 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 PZ OSS, which does not even come close to doing an APS-C sensor justice. Only the very center is reasonably sharp and it quickly gets softer going out from there. I was surprised how much distortion the E 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 PZ OSS has, even at 50mm. I have pocket cameras that have better lenses than that!
Shamael: NEX-6 runs without AA filter too, like NEX-7 and RX 1. Look the picture 2264079 in full size, and look how many moire pattern you find in the curbs of the leafs of the Pampa grass. They are all excellent cameras, but they have all that problem, same as D800E from Nikon.
I think what you are seeing is not moire, but rather the affects of processing high levels of CA out of the image.
TonyC5D: Sorry guys but, yet again, a very poor set of pictures. Lots of out of focus or blurry shots, and why the very high ISO samples, or is this a joint test of camera and lens. If so I think it would be much better to do these separately. Many shots are at low shutter speeds which will not help unless you were using a very sturdy tripod. This is supposedly the best review site on the web and your technical write ups are excellent but you do keep letting things down with poor quality galleries. Sorry but more attention needed I think. Having worked for camera manufacturers for many years I would feel rather aggrieved with the apparent lack of effort and technical skill put into the gallery shots.
Some nice artsy pics, but it would be more informative if your photographers selected scenes that allow comparison between center sharpness and edge sharpness. Lots of lenses are sharp dead center these days, but it's how they perform across the frame that separates the good from the ugly.