Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

Started Apr 19, 2013 | Discussions
Mako2011
MOD Mako2011 Forum Pro • Posts: 25,038
D5K
1

Shunda77 wrote:

D7100 + 18-105 = $2175.00

D5100 + 18-105, + 55-300vr, + 35/f1.8 = $2152.00


The creative potential of the first kit is huge.

Not a very demanding kit in terms of many things though. Mostly slow glass and not well suited to indoor events. I would try the D7100/D7000 option with a few fast primes as a starter first. I like the 18-105 on my D70 but it really starts to fall behind on the D7K with better quality glass. For most shooters though, it would be fine and most never go past the kit lens anyways. The D5100 with the 18-105 would suit the vast majority of shooters in the consumer range anyways. The average person here...would be a bit limited though, IMO. When the D7K came out...I'm certainly glad I didn't go with a D5000 kit even though it could easily keep up in many lighting and average output size conditions. The D90 certainly still does.

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My opinions are my own and not those of DPR or its administration. They carry no 'special' value (except to me and Lacie of course)

Reilly Diefenbach
Reilly Diefenbach Forum Pro • Posts: 12,674
Re: no need
3

The D7100 is better but not dramatically better, and it's not really better at the smaller apertures that are  commonly used so you may as well save your money. I know what many others here know, that the D800e can produce better images than the D800, but in my eyes not by a dramatic margin so I saved several hundred dollars and bought the D800. While I have several of the "D800 approved" lenses, day to day I'm more likely to use good but less excellent lenses like the 24-85mm and 28-300mm VR lenses, and they wouldn't be able to take advantage of the D800e's

As it happens, Nikon actually had some idea what they were doing when they brought out the 24-85VR as a kit lens for the new high MP offerings.  It's capable of delivering a whopping 3900 LWPH to the sensor at center, tapering off to soft corners.  In other words, the lens is outresolving the D800e with no problem center to mid.  Since they didn't want to completely gut the sales of the 24-120 and the 24-70, they made it not quite as good as either of those.  But it's a heck of a deal, and should be in the running for the D7100 as well, where it is tacks edge to edge throughout the range.

24-85VR

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Reilly Diefenbach
Reilly Diefenbach Forum Pro • Posts: 12,674
Re: A couple more thoughts Reilly...
1

JimPearce wrote:

The ISOs on the D7100 are about 1/4 stop lower than the D7000 by dxomark's measure - again very comparable to the D300 (Likely the D7100 should be shot about 1/3 stop hotter than the D7000 for lowest noise - and this definitely would cause issues for studio comparisons.). As with the D300 this seems to translate into relatively more highlight headroom. But the pixel level DR is more than one stop better than the D300, and .3 to .4 stops better than the D7000 (at ISOs from 200 to 1600)! The long and the short of it is that I'm finding that the D7100 just shrugs off a few blinkies in the whites. Another thing I'm finding with my body is that the matrix metering is very accurate - a good thing if you practice ETTR. Anyway, this is my advice: shoot it like you have no exposure slider in your editor.

Thanks, Jim.  So there you have another one to add to your check list, fence sitters and bemused decision makers.  More accurate metering to go with more detail, higher contrast and color, better focusing, and the whole shootin' match.

I'll throw in a little further tidbit here regarding frugality.  I'm very much in favor.  Upgrading to every new model doesn't cost much once you're on the merry go round.  About $13 a month after the initial buyin for upper level DX.  If you wait too long, your five year old model is not worth much.  Learn how to do a good listing on Ebay or Craigslist with well lit, sharp photos and you'll get top dollar.  Upgrade right after the change of model and you'll do fine.

Most of you probably spend much more than $13 monthly on smart phones and the attendant apps and gizmos, so measure your commitment to photographic excellence accordingly.  I've used a Krzr flip phone on Consumer Cellular the last 5 years, which has allowed me to bank more than enough to do the D800e and the 14-24.  My texting is terrible, but my pics are way sharp.

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BillD7000 Contributing Member • Posts: 879
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...
5

Again, the old rule holds: skip a generation.  D80 shooters will definitely see an improvement; D90 shooters, less so but still; D7000 shooters, not so much.

Wrong.  Sorry.  Much as I loved my D7000...

The AF alone on the D7100 is noticeably better than the D7000.  The color rendition is better.  The extra 8mp images are the icing on the cake for those who print large, for money.

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Rexgig0
Rexgig0 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,489
Better ergonomics, at least for my hands...

I handled a D7100, and compared to the D7000 I bought for my wife, the D7100's grip is a much better fit in my right hand. I had found the D7000 grip much worse than my F6, and D200, D300, and D300s cameras I had handled, and am glad the D7100 grip has returned to what I liked about the earlier Nikon cameras.

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coudet Veteran Member • Posts: 4,077
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

ajamils1 wrote:

Also, to achieve better IQ Nikon seem to have compromised on the noise and that's why D7100 exhibits a lot more noise compared to same sensor D5200.

No, it doesn't.  It's about the same as the D7000

As for D7100 and D5200, they have the same sensor. Therefore, same noise.

D7100/D5200 sensor is better, for high ISO, than the D7k. Dxomark comparison is correct and shows it clearly.

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/studio-compare#baseDir=%2Freviews_data&cameraDataSubdir=boxshot&indexFileName=boxshotindex.xml&presetsFileName=boxshotpresets.xml&showDescriptions=false&headerTitle=Studio%20scene&headerSubTitle=Standard%20studio%20scene%20comparison&masterCamera=nikon_d5200&masterSample=dsc_0019.acr&slotsCount=4&slot0Camera=nikon_d5200&slot0Sample=dsc_0019.acr&slot0DisableCameraSelection=true&slot0DisableSampleSelection=true&slot0LinkWithMaster=true&slot1Camera=nikon_d7100&slot1Sample=dsc_0180.acr&x=0.007204892222778225&y=-1.1887592656171661

The D7100 shows less blurry details, stronger color and better contrast, all owing to the lack of an AA filter.

Actually, a correction here - any difference you see here with regards to noise is because D7100 was give a half-stop exposure advantage over D5200. Dpreview is very good at misleading people with their fumbled tests.

coudet Veteran Member • Posts: 4,077
Re: Not a constructive post.
2

Jared Huntr wrote:

IMO, the argument that more resolution offers more cropping is weak.

Yet, it is correct.

Why not invest in some better telephoto lenses if you are that serious about IQ?

Actually, if you're serious about IQ, you'll need both higher resolution sensor and better telephoto lens.

I still maintain that if you downsample images from a 12MP, 16MP or 24MP to even a large JPG for web presentation that the differences will be negligible to non-existent.

Sure, if you downsample all to 320x240 pixel thumbnails, there will be no difference.

coudet Veteran Member • Posts: 4,077
Re: no need

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

As it happens, Nikon actually had some idea what they were doing when they brought out the 24-85VR as a kit lens for the new high MP offerings.

No doubt, lenses are getting better all the time.

In other words, the lens is outresolving the D800e with no problem center to mid.

The sensors are the bottleneck. Hell, I've seen a decades-old $3 lens badly undersampled on a 22mp Canon..

Shunda77
Shunda77 Senior Member • Posts: 2,132
Re: Not a constructive post.

coudet wrote:

Jared Huntr wrote:

IMO, the argument that more resolution offers more cropping is weak.

Yet, it is correct.

It is not correct, there are very good reasons why telephoto lenses are always preferable to cropping if at all possible.

Why not invest in some better telephoto lenses if you are that serious about IQ?

Actually, if you're serious about IQ, you'll need both higher resolution sensor and better telephoto lens.

And a Ferrari.

I still maintain that if you downsample images from a 12MP, 16MP or 24MP to even a large JPG for web presentation that the differences will be negligible to non-existent.

Sure, if you downsample all to 320x240 pixel thumbnails, there will be no difference.

Oh good grief.

Tbolt47 Senior Member • Posts: 1,859
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

BillD7000 wrote:

Again, the old rule holds: skip a generation.  D80 shooters will definitely see an improvement; D90 shooters, less so but still; D7000 shooters, not so much.

Wrong.  Sorry.  Much as I loved my D7000...

The AF alone on the D7100 is noticeably better than the D7000.  The color rendition is better.  The extra 8mp images are the icing on the cake for those who print large, for money.

That's what interests me in upgrading, the AF. Also the other thing is if it has less blur problems from mirror slap (do you notice an improvement here?), these two problems are what has made the D7000 a little frustrating sometimes. Plus my D7000 is my only Nikon body I own and it would be nice to have a second one.

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Brandon birder Veteran Member • Posts: 4,144
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...
4

Tbolt47 wrote:

BillD7000 wrote:

Again, the old rule holds: skip a generation.  D80 shooters will definitely see an improvement; D90 shooters, less so but still; D7000 shooters, not so much.

Wrong.  Sorry.  Much as I loved my D7000...

The AF alone on the D7100 is noticeably better than the D7000.  The color rendition is better.  The extra 8mp images are the icing on the cake for those who print large, for money.

That's what interests me in upgrading, the AF. Also the other thing is if it has less blur problems from mirror slap (do you notice an improvement here?), these two problems are what has made the D7000 a little frustrating sometimes. Plus my D7000 is my only Nikon body I own and it would be nice to have a second one.

I agree, the D7000 was a great camera with a difficult autofocus. The D7100 AF is just perfect. Once again I can place  the centre spot precisely and get instant accurate AF. Also for birds in flight the AF is like chalk and cheese with rapid acquisition and reliable tracking. I used a D7000 for two years and in less than one week of using the D7100 I am completely sold.  To me it is a lightweight D800 and a perfect companion for it.

adam49 Forum Member • Posts: 63
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

BryceM wrote:

As a D7000 shooter, the only feature in the D7100 that truly stirs the envy is the little lock button in the middle of the exposure mode selector dial:

I've had the mode dial spin unbidden just often enough to make me wish Nikon had included this (or a stiffer spring detent) on my D7000...

Sorry, I don´t buy this ! The "small button" makes a fast change of photo modes impossible - one need more fingers crossed to push it ! I used D7000 for may years, and never, never spun the mode selector dial accidentally (the same for D3100/3200) ! This button should make the camera more "idiotproof", but it makes it slower to use.

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adam

coudet Veteran Member • Posts: 4,077
Re: Not a constructive post.
2

Shunda77 wrote:

coudet wrote:

Jared Huntr wrote:

IMO, the argument that more resolution offers more cropping is weak.

Yet, it is correct.

It is not correct, there are very good reasons why telephoto lenses are always preferable to cropping if at all possible.

We're weren't talking about lenses here. Your comment has no relevance at all to what I said.

Why not invest in some better telephoto lenses if you are that serious about IQ?

Actually, if you're serious about IQ, you'll need both higher resolution sensor and better telephoto lens.

And a Ferrari.

Again, no relevance at all.

I still maintain that if you downsample images from a 12MP, 16MP or 24MP to even a large JPG for web presentation that the differences will be negligible to non-existent.

Sure, if you downsample all to 320x240 pixel thumbnails, there will be no difference.

Oh good grief.

And again, you're 3 for 3. No relevance to anything I wrote in my post.

Please read more carefully next time and try to stick to the topic we're discussing.

marike6 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,088
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...
2

BillD7000 wrote:

Again, the old rule holds: skip a generation.  D80 shooters will definitely see an improvement; D90 shooters, less so but still; D7000 shooters, not so much.

Wrong.  Sorry.  Much as I loved my D7000...

The AF alone on the D7100 is noticeably better than the D7000.  The color rendition is better.  The extra 8mp images are the icing on the cake for those who print large, for money.

And printing large is not the only benefit of the extra resolution the D7100 provides.  The ability to crop without losing quality is huge benefit.  As a D800 user, I can tell you that any negatives of a slightly slower workflow are far outweighed by the advantage of being able to crop in post (and like the D7100, in camera).

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marike6 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,088
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

Jared Huntr wrote:

marike6 wrote:

mosswings wrote:

http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_D7100/

In day to day shooting, the D7100 and D7000 and D5200 perform basically the same.  Noise is very similiar, the D7000 might have a bit of advantage at 100% at higher ISOs. Resolution wise, the AA filter appears to make no difference, echoing what DPR has said.

You wrote: "The removal of the AA filter is essentially a marketing feature".  Sorry this is wrong.

First of all, it has been proven by Lensrentals and others that the D800E is the highest resolving DSLR in existence.

And you can see clearly in the DPR Studio Test that the lack of an AA filter DOES make a difference (See Link Below).

DPR Studio Test (Perhaps DPR doesn't bother looking at their own tests)

IMO, it is pretty sloppy to extrapolate the results of the D800E to the D7100. They are completely different cameras and sensors with different image processing algorithms. Unless both sensors have at least the same pixel density and noise characteristics, it is foolish to even begin to compare them for the purpose of discussing the AA filter.

It's my fault for not making my point more clear.  I was talking about the increase in resolution from the vanilla D800 as compared to the D800E.

But if you want to see plain as day the advantages of the D7100 over the D5200 which has the exact same sensor, all you need to do is open the "DPR Studio Test" link above to see a real and tangible increase in resolution in the D7100 crops vs the D5200 crops.  Why DPR didn't notice the obviously better acutance in the D7100 is anybody's guess.

If we want to nit pick, I'm sure removing the AA filter on the D7100 makes a difference. But it appears to make no PRACTICAL difference.

It's not a nit pick to say the AA-filter makes a difference in resolution.  Either it does or it doesn't, and the crops above in DPR's own Studio Test clearly show that it does make a difference.  Whether that difference is important to hobbyists, or for snapshots is a totally different question.

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Richard Veteran Member • Posts: 4,858
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...
2

Time to get a FF camera if you want to upgrade.

The only other option for you is to hope the D300 is upgraded to more pro features but if you don't need those feature (or the improvements on the D7100 that have nothing to do with sensor IQ) I would agree, the D7000 is a very capable camera and for most people, you really don't need much more than that and there is no reason to upgrade. I would suggest to people, spend your money on better lenses at that point

mosswings wrote:

http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Nikon_D7100/

In day to day shooting, the D7100 and D7000 and D5200 perform basically the same.  Noise is very similiar, the D7000 might have a bit of advantage at 100% at higher ISOs. Resolution wise, the AA filter appears to make no difference, echoing what DPR has said.  In tightly controlled studio shots we have seen differences, but that is not how people usually shoot. For the typical use case, one could argue that the removal of the AA filter is essentially a marketing feature.

Again, the old rule holds: skip a generation.  D80 shooters will definitely see an improvement; D90 shooters, less so but still; D7000 shooters, not so much.  The buy decision needs to be made on more subtle IQ metrics and operational features like AF, viewfinder, ergonomy.

Weighed against this must be the acquisition cost of memory cards and increased post processing time for maximal quality.

larrywilson
larrywilson Veteran Member • Posts: 6,399
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...
1

Better auto focus and viewfinder, enough to upgrade, especially for the better af.

Larry

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OP mosswings Veteran Member • Posts: 8,954
Re: Cameralabs D7100 review up: verdict...

Richard wrote:

Time to get a FF camera if you want to upgrade.

Indeed, if you're looking for major improvements in sensor performance at the pixel level.

The only other option for you is to hope the D300 is upgraded to more pro features but if you don't need those feature (or the improvements on the D7100 that have nothing to do with sensor IQ) I would agree, the D7000 is a very capable camera and for most people, you really don't need much more than that and there is no reason to upgrade. I would suggest to people, spend your money on better lenses at that point

mosswings wrote:

Remember, I'm reporting what other reviewers are saying here as a springboard for discussion.  I'm fairly sold on the D7100, but that's because I'm coming from a D90, not a D7000; have no intention of going full frame for reasons of weight and bulk; and for reasons of ergonomy and field-maintainability don't consider the D5200 an option.  However, if when buy time comes the funds just aren't there to upgrade, I still know how well the D90 performs in day-to-day shooting - very well indeed.  In fact, a lot of photogs are shelling out big bucks for OMD EM5s to obtain the performance we D90 owners have been enjoying since 2008.

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Adrian Van Contributing Member • Posts: 684
Re: Great job Nikon on D7100....
1

Last year I could have either bought a D300s store demo (less than 1000 actuations taken) or new D7000 body for about the same price for body. I picked the D300s because of the superior AF, buttons and rugged body. The D7000 only advantage was superior sensor iso in low light thus lower noise and bit more MP. With the right lenses the D300s still gives great sharp photos anyways for my needs with solid AF and few missed shots.

With the D7100, the better AF and resolution and iso/noise ability make it a compelling upgrade from D300s which the D7000 lacked in some key points (AF speed and focus accuracy being the biggest). Also with a lighter weight than D300s body, this can help in daily use and less carrying weight.

Until a D400, the D7100 is the best DX camera out there in my opinion and worth it.

My other suggestion to Nikon, upgrade D600 to D600s right away and include the better AF system and also a better mechanical shutter to win back the market of those holding out on buying that camera due to significant issues reported. Increase the price of upgraded IQ of D600s a couple of hundred dollars or so, so not to impact as much on D800 sales.

Also, please Nikon, improve your quality control department (after manufacturing), if product is tested sufficiently before leaving plant. Should the customers be made the ones to test the cameras after receiving?

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Stacey_K
Stacey_K Veteran Member • Posts: 8,748
Re: Not a constructive post.

coudet wrote:

I still maintain that if you downsample images from a 12MP, 16MP or 24MP to even a large JPG for web presentation that the differences will be negligible to non-existent.

Sure, if you downsample all to 320x240 pixel thumbnails, there will be no difference.

Here we go, "Lets throw out a ridiculous extreme example"...

What they and I are talking about is a normal output where people can view the -whole- image. You know where you can take in the whole image? For example an 8X10 or even 11X14 print standing at a reasonable viewing distance. I have a couple of prints made from a 5MP E1 shot at 100iso and I can't really see anything different in an 8X10 print from a D7000 image. What the D7000 brings to the table is less noise and more DR.

I honestly don't care what 100% crops look like. I look at something because it's a compelling image, not because the detail in the corner of the image of some grass blades are extra sharp, zoomed in to what standing a few inches from a 40X60inch print would be like.

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Stacey

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