FZ200: 3 weeks on the “Dark Side” - Nikon D7100 vs FZ200

Started Apr 9, 2013 | Discussions thread
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RudyPohl Veteran Member • Posts: 4,667
FZ200: 3 weeks on the “Dark Side” - Nikon D7100 vs FZ200

Hi Everyone:

As requested by some of you and promised by me, here is my very brief comparison between the Nikon D7100 and the Panasonic FZ200, and my comparison between bridge cameras and DSLRs when used for hobbyist wildlife photography.

Conclusion in a nutshell:

The Nikon D7100 together with just a single consumer-grade lens (the Nikon 70-300mm F4.5-5.6 image stabilized -  a great lens), is 3 times the price and 3 times the weight of Panasonic FZ200. However, you do not get 3 times the image quality, or 3 times the shooting versatility in return. In fact, with this limited single-zoom lens DSLR set-up you will be giving up all wide angle and all macro shooting to boot.

In comparing these two camera rigs, my conclusion therefore, is that for the purpose of hobbyist wildlife photography the image quality of the Panasonic FZ200, and the FZ150, are so good, that from a simple dollars and cents, and convenience and versatility perspective, it make no sense to buy the Nikon D7100 single-lens rig, or any other similarly expensive DSLR outfit. You get far, far more bang for your buck with the FZ200.

I have shot about 15,000 shots with the FZ200 over a 7-month period and have shot 3000 shots with the Nikon D7100 in the last 3 weeks. I think I have produced some fairly decent images using each rig, although I’m really just learning my way around the Nikon. So having made this hands-on comparison, this is my conclusion. Also, I believe that all the leading brand bridge cameras are so good these days that this conclusion would extend to them as well.

So why then part with all that cash just to buy and lug around an expensive DSLR rig?

Well, I think people do it for a lot of different reasons. I’ll share mine the next opportunity I get to add to this thread or post a new one. Right now I’m out of time and need to get back to work, but I wanted to get back to this forum (which is a really nice community by the way), and give you my initial findings.



Nikon D7100 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200
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