Why I love my D200

Started Jul 24, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Stacey_K Veteran Member • Posts: 8,810
Why I love my D200

OK people keep asking for examples of why I like the output of this camera over my D7000 at base iso. I know I "just do" but today shot some red flowers on my front porch with both cameras, same lens, same tripod and picked two shots that had the same tonal curve as an example. The D200 normally needs +1/3 stop exposure comp in my experience and the two shots with the exact same exposure made the D7000 look even worse. Please don't C&C the shot, this was just a quick point the camera at some begonias picture.

Below is a crop from both shots, first notice how much more saturated the D200 shot looks. Look at the subtle colors in the right petal in the D200 shot, the D7000 doesn't show this and looks washed out. Then note in the D7000 shot, while it looks less saturated on the right petal, it has a portion in the center of the left petal blown to mush and it's not from over/under exposure. If you desaturate the red channel (even in the raw file) trying to find the detail in the left petal, it just further desaturates the right one.

You can't do anything in a raw file to fix this either. If you try to use an in camera picture control with more saturation, it just blows more of the image into mush. Actually any picture control other than neutral blows more of the image into mush, especially reds. If there were skin tones in the image, doing this desaturation of the red channel would ruin the skin tones, so you can pick having good skin tones or a red flower that isn't blown into mush but not both. Also note the green leaf behind the red looks exactly the same color/tone in both images.

Also the D200 has better mid tone contrast, if you try to add contrast to the D7000 image it just starts blocking parts of the image up. Same with trying to increase the saturation to equal the D200, the reds just go crazy. The reds in the D200 shot are rich without looking cartoonish.

Both cameras are set to neutral picture control with no boost to anything other than in camera sharpening. I've done zero PP to either image. Maybe some people like the look of the D7000 image but at base iso, I much prefer what I see out of the D200. Obviously in low light the D7000 is the camera to choose and I just live with/deal with the color issues as it's better that nasty salt and pepper color noise.

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 Stacey_K's gear list:Stacey_K's gear list
Nikon D200 Nikon D700 Nikon D4 Nikon D800 Sony a7 +19 more
Nikon D200 Nikon D7000
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