D5200 Best in Class

Started Jan 18, 2013 | Discussions thread
mosswings Veteran Member • Posts: 8,957
Re: D5200 Best in Class

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

A home run, Reilly? Not in my playbook. A solid 2-base hit, something that had to happen to stay in the game. Taken from the total system perspective, more like a strategic bunt.

Wow, you are hard to please. A camera that can produce a picture that few would be able to tell from a D800e, having equal DR, at least on paper, and outstanding color. For $899, destined to be a lot less? Are you kidding me? Nobody even dreamed of this kind of picture quality at that price a few short years ago. I would consider that a home run in anyone's book.

For my purposes on a 1080p monitor, 24MP is about as low as I want to look at critically for landscape or other scenario including lots of fine detail. With 4K monitors this year and in the future, this little unit will provide enough pixels to avoid being leapfrogged by viewing technology, as has happened repeatedly in the past, to say nothing of the huge prints that could be cranked out.

This D5200 should be able to produce results similar to a Canon 5DII at $3000, only with much better dynamic range and little to no banding. You can complain about missing features all you want, but you're not paying for them, you'll just have to ante up for the D7200. If you put this thing on a tripod or in a steady grip with the kit lens, you're three quarters of the way to a technically great shot, to say nothing of the 40G, 35 1.8 or the 16-85VR.

I've got no dog in this fight, as I'm already geared up, but I'm excited for all DXers to see what can be done with this affordable tech.

Perhaps I am, Reilly, perhaps I am.  And yes, you're right, the D5200 is within a half-stop of the D800 or D600:

which makes me even LESS interested in Nikon's FF offerings. Particularly if that f4 16-85 comes out before I consider going for Sigma's new 17-70.

However, I stand by my basic point: the bar is moving slower in image quality improvement terms, it's already fantastic, and we shouldn't expect improvements like the ones that let the D90 and D7000 disrupt the SLR market.  So the game must now turn to making our lot as consumers easier. BMW sells cars based on performance at the limits, but Toyota makes repeat customers because their cars just work (recent difficulties noted, full disclosure, I own a Camry hybrid and understand why the would-buy-again rate is 83%).  I'm mostly a travel photographer, so my priorities are likely different than yours (or Roman's, for that matter).

I don't consider AF fine tuning a feature; more of an essential self-calibration function for extracting all that this superb imaging chain is capable of. That performance is why entry-level or enthusiasts alike buy this camera. The difference between the D5200 and D7000 should be more in the direct controllability of shooting parameters and build, not in the presence or absence of basic maintenance functionality. As I have pointed out before, this effectively translates into the minimum price of a Nikon DSLR being that of a D7000, because if one buys lower down the chain one has to spend the price differential in service charges for lens and camera calibration and matching. For heavens sake, if you need to make some distinction in this regard, offer the simpler one-parameter tuning feature in the D5200 and a more Canon-like multi-parameter tuning feature at the D7000 level and above.  Be kind to the entry-level folks, don't shortchange those who require smaller bodies delivering that high IQ, but offer meaningful increases in configurability in the upmarket bodies to those who know how to handle it. This is what consumer-oriented product differentiation entails.

You're focused on image quality, and no question that the D5200 offers it. I'm focused on whole package. Nikon, love 'em as I do, is becoming a bit annoying and predictable in this latter regard.

Nevertheless, I will take a good long look at the D5200 before next Fall's big trip.

 mosswings's gear list:mosswings's gear list
Olympus XZ-1 Olympus Stylus 1 Nikon D90 Nikon D7100 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm F3.5-5.6G ED VR +5 more
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