Back to the action: Nikon D500 Review
The Nikon D500 is a 21MP APS-C DSLR capable of shooting at up to 10 frames per second and featuring an autofocus system derived from the one in the D5. In other words, it’s exactly the kind of high-end DX format body that appeared to have become extinct with the D300S.
The six-and-a-half years that have passed since the D300S’ launch have seen the camera market move on considerably but the D500 does much to reclaim the position as one of the preeminent APS-C camera on the market.
As you might expect, much of the improved capability of the camera centers around sports and high-speed shooting, with significant upgrades to the shooting rate and autofocus system, but there are also major upgrades to the viewfinder, video capabilities and connectivity options which expand its utility beyond one particular niche.
- 20.7MP APS-C (DX-format) sensor
- 153 point AF module with 99 cross-type points
- 180,000 pixel RGB sensor for metering and subject recognition
- AF point joystick
- 10 fps shooting for up to 200 shots (lossless compressed 14-bit Raw to XQD card)
- 4K (UHD) video from 1.5x crop of sensor
- 100% coverage viewfinder with 1.0x magnification
- 2.36M-dot tilting touchscreen display
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity with NFC for setup
- Mic and headphone sockets
- USB 3.0 connector
- Anti-flicker option for working under artificial lighting
A good sport
Much of the D500’s capability is built around the ability to focus and shoot very quickly. Its 153-point AF module offers near full-width coverage and is linked to a 180,000 pixel RGB metering sensor to further improve its AF tracking capabilities. Interestingly, and like the D5, the D500’s AF system now offers two parameters for fine-tuning the autofocus tracking behavior, letting the user specify the type of subject movement and the correct response to another object blocking the targeted subject. Existing Nikons only let you specify duration, suggesting Nikon is trying to expand the range of shooting situations for which the AF system can be optimized.
Only 55 of the camera’s AF points can be directly selected and the D500 gains both a joystick and a touchscreen to make it as fast as possible to select the point you want to use. Add to this the ability to shoot up to 200 Raw frames before slowing down (if you use an XQD card), and it becomes obvious that the D500 is intended as a high-speed pro/semi-pro camera in a way the D7000 series never was.
|How's that for coverage? The D500 doesn't just boast a lot of autofocus points, it also offers them across most of the width of the frame, which is useful whether you're manually selecting a point or letting the camera track your subject.|
The D500 also gains an anti-flicker option designed to ensure the camera shoots in-sync with the brightest point in the flickering cycle of artificial lights. It's a feature we first saw on the Canon EOS 7D Mark II and we'd expect it to be particularly valuable for shooting indoor sports such as basketball.
Another sign that this is a true high-end camera is the inclusion of a larger viewfinder. Like previous DX00 class cameras it has 100% coverage but it also offers 1.0x magnification, which is the largest optical viewfinder we can remember seeing in an APS-C camera (electronic viewfinders are a different matter, since size and brightness isn't constrained by sensor/mirror size).
The D500 can also shoot 4K video and includes both an input for using an external mic and a headphone socket for audio monitoring. The camera also offers a flat picture profile to provide more post-processing flexibility, on-screen highlight warnings and power aperture control that allows you to select and change the aperture when in movie mode. There’s no focus peaking option, though, and you can’t zoom-in while you record to confirm or adjust focus as you record.
One of the other big features Nikon is touting is its Snapbridge system that uses Bluetooth LE (a low-power variant of Bluetooth also known as Bluetooth Smart), and Wi-Fi to maintain a connection between the camera and a smart device. This includes the ability to auto-transfer images from the camera, as well as initiating the Wi-Fi connection for remote shooting or manual image transfer.
To show where the D500 sits in the lineup, here are the major feature differences between it and the less expensive D7200, along with a comparison back to the D300S – not because we expect anyone to be choosing between them, but to show how much of a step forward the camera represents.
|Nikon D500||Nikon D7200||Nikon D300S|
|AF points||153 (99 cross type)||51 (15 cross-type)||51 (15 cross-type)|
|Max frame rate||10 fps||
|Buffer depths||200 lossless compressed 14-bit Raw||
~17 14-bit Raw
|30 lossless compressed 14-bit Raw|
|Shutter durability rating||200,000||150,000||150,000|
|Wi-Fi?||Yes (and Bluetooth)||Yes||No|
|Body construction||Magnesium Alloy + Carbon fiber composite||Magnesium Alloy + Carbon fiber composite||Magnesium Alloy|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||1240 shots/charge||1100 shots/charge||950 shots/charge|
|Weight (Body Only)||760g||675g||
|26 April 2016||Studio scene and Raw dynamic range published.|
|16 May 2016||Introduction, Body and Handling, Operation and Controls, Wi-Fi and Connectivity and Video pages published|
|25 May 2016||Autofocus, Loose Ends and Conclusion pages added. Review finalized|
The Japanese research firm also expects the global image sensor market to grow from $17.2 billion in 2019 to $27 billion by 2023.
These two lenses bring the total number of XEEN CF lenses to five when you include the previously-announced 24mm T1.5, 50mm T1.5 and 85mm T1.5 lenses.
Earlier this week, Judge Joseph Farah ruled in favor of Jason Harrison. He was arrested for a legal flight at a Genessee County park (Michigan, U.S.) in December 2018. The ruling is expected to set a precedent for the rest of the United States.
The lens is the second in Vazen's Micro Four Thirds anamorphic lineup, which will be rounded out with a third lens 'in the coming months.'
At last month's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas we sat down with Yosuke Yamane, Director of Panasonic's Imaging Business Division, to discuss market reaction to the S1-series, full-frame strategy and the state of the L-mount alliance.
Three new lenses from Leica for the M system, including a pair of limited edition Safari options (28mm F2 and 75mm F2) and a silver version of the 75mm F2.
The Timelapse+ View is a sophisticated device that aims to solve a common challenge for time-lapse photographers: shooting through extreme changes in light levels, such as day-to-night transitions. As we discover in our review, it works really well.
The model includes replaceable batteries, Bluetooth and a compact folding design.
The new Olympus 12-45mm F4 Pro lens promises to be a high quality, compact zoom for Micro Four Thirds cameras. Does it live up to the hype?
The DPReview TV team recently traveled to Costa Rica where they had an opportunity to shoot with the new Olympus 12-45mm F4 Pro lens. Check out their sample images in this gallery and see how it performed.
The company says it designed the jacket in partnership with an actual (although current unidentified) photojournalist.
The company's CEO says this 'may seem like bad news at first,' but that it'll ultimately benefit customers.
The ISOCELL Bright HM1 camera sensor features the industry's first 'Nonacell' technology.
At $199 it's not the cheapest underwater housing for a phone we have seen, but it looks more solid than most.
He'll remain with the company as Executive Chairman of the Board, however.
It's not cheap and the initial setup is time-consuming, but the Loupedeck+ improves on its predecessor in some important ways and makes a lot of sense for those with demanding photo editing needs.
The FAA recently proposed rules that could impact all drone operators in the US, virtually requiring an internet connection to fly and a requirement to broadcast personally identifying information. Here's what's at stake and how to make your voice heard.
CIPA, the organizer behind the CP+ tradeshow, has announced it’s canceling this year's exhibition, citing concerns surrounding the Coronavirus.
The service isn't intended for long-term storage, instead making it easier to send images to third-party platforms.
The bike has a modular clamp-on system with support for baskets and other attachments.
The Selphy Square QX10 is a pocket-sized dye-sublimation printer with a built-in rechargeable battery for making easy prints on the go.
Wedding photographer Richard Wong created a video showing side-by-side comparisons between images created with similar full-frame mirrorless cameras. One has an anti-aliasing filter over the sensor while the other doesn't. Is there a noticeable difference?
The world's most important smartphone exhibition has been cancelled at the last minute due to fears of the spread of coronavirus amoung exhibitors and the 100,000 visitors
Without water, El Capitan's annual waterfall event may very well end up being a massive disappointment for the barrage of photographers who swarm there every year to capture the iconic scene.
Canon has announced the development of the R5 - a flagship RF-mount camera capable of 8K video and 20fps shooting. Details are scant, but the new camera is expected to be released at some point this year, alongside nine new RF lenses and two teleconverters.
The Canon EOS Rebel T8i packs a pretty impressive set of features, including a new Digic 8 processor, which enables 7 fps continuous shooting and 4K video capture.
Canon's RF system gains an affordable, compact travel zoom in the form of the 24-105mm F4-7.1. It will be offered as a kit option with the EOS R and RP, and will be available separately for $400.
Photographer Alireza Rostami took inspiration from a recent book he read to create a pair of cameras made entirely from 35mm film cassettes.
Sony World Photography Awards recently announced the finalists and shortlisted winners for their 2020 Professional competition.
The new model follows Negative Supply's Film Carrier MK1 designed for camera-scanning 35mm film.