D5200 Best in Class

Started Jan 18, 2013 | Discussions thread
mosswings Veteran Member • Posts: 8,253
Re: I agree wil Reilly Re: D5200 Best in Class
2

rhlpetrus wrote:

mosswings wrote:

Yes, Nikon did do its homework:

....

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.

I think you are missing it Moss. Doubling the pixel count from D90 to D5200 and getting about same IQ characteristics at full res is big accomplishment. We are actually reaching, step by step, the technological limits of bayer sensor tech. Don't expect much more from that. Likely the next step will fast enough processing to shoot 2 or 3 images within 1/250s or less and blending them. That's about the only way to go over the present limits of 13-14EV of DR. Same for noise and color. So, I concur with Reilly, Nikon and Toshiba have hit a home run from what you know so far. And thinkmabout the strategic POV of Nikon getting rid of the dependence, snfar, on Sony, for the best sensor tech.

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Renato. http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhlpedrosa/ OnExposure member http://www.onexposure.net/ Good shooting and good luck (after Ed Murrow)

Renato, you've stated my point while saying that I've missed the point.  What we've got is an imaging chain that doubles the resolution over the D90 but keeps the noise levels of the D7000.  We should expect this, given that with sufficiently fine-scale photolithography there is little disadvantage to increasing pixel density.  That is exactly what we should expect Nikon would do if they opted for higher resolution. From a technological standpoint, if we extend the baseline for comparison arbitrarily far, new technology looks more and more like unfathomable magic.  The bar moved big time from the D80 to D90.  Huge change in bulk technology, 1.5 to 2 real stops of improvement in noise floor.  The bar moved again from the D90 to the D7000.  Not so much in ultimate DR, but in the evenness of the noise signature that created a lower average noise floor and wiped out very visible patterning flaws.  Now we're at the D5200, and we switched metal layer conductivity to keep sensel sizes as large as possible.  But the basic performance of the sensor didn't change much at all; it may be that the improvements we may see in our rendered images will be more perceptual in nature, or be the result of better smoothing that doesn't kill acuity.  Whatever, we still are dealing with sensors that can capture 4-6 stops more dynamic range than our viewing media.

Just to make sure we're clear, my point is this - what practical  home run has the D5200 hit? Can the user kick up the ISO another stop over the D7000 to hand hold in low light? Does it make it easier for the buyer to tolerate the f4-f5.6 DX zooms that are most of what Nikon offers for DX? After all, most buyers won't go farther than these lenses.  If we are at the upper limit of DX Bayer sensor technology, then the answer is likely no...the D7000/D5100 pretty much took care of that.  Therefore, until Bayer is superseded by something else, the upgrade race needs to be run on a different track - whether it is making it easier for the buyer to get good pictures reliably.  It needs to be focused not so much on single-track technological improvements in the imaging chain but rather on more holistic measures.

I like your suggestion for improved signal processing.  The Series 1 imaging chain demonstrates what can be done with a decent sensor and hellishly fast data rates and processing, plus on-chip AF.  This also makes for significant useability improvements for the buyer (ignoring the shackling of some of that useability in the UI).

From Nikon's standpoint, reducing dependence on Sony is a good thing, but it's an internal good thing. The buyer doesn't care.  The D5200's DXO scores make us techheads salivate, but the new customer that Nikon is chasing with all of its cameras but especially its entry level models hasn't developed that Pavlovian response.  It all depends on who you define as your customer.

 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 f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +5 more
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