Monday, January 31, 2011

Nikon D7000 Review

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Review based on a production Nikon D7000 with firmware v1.00, 1: 00 pm, 1.002When it was announced in September the D7000 took a lot of people by surprise. Although a D90 successor had been on the horizon for some time, what wasn't expected was how close in specification terms the new room would turn out to be to the D300S. In some respects, in fact, the D7000 actually outguns its (supposedly) semi-pro cousin, and offers a compelling upgrade option to both D90 and D300S owners, whilst nominally sitting between the two in Nikon's current lineup.

Although, the ergonomically D7000 is a very close match for the D90, its overall ' feel ' is considerably more serious, thanks to a magnesium alloy body shell and slightly thicker rubber coating on the hand grip and rear of the room. At 3 .2MP the D7000 offers the second highest resolution of any Nikon DSLR, behind only the 24Mp D3X. All of these pixels are packed onto a newly developed CMOS sensor, which is almost certainly the same or very similar to that in the Sony Alpha SLT-55. As well As extra resolution, the new sensor also offers a higher standard ISO span of 100-6400, expandable up to the equivalent of ISO 25,600.

The D7000 's AF and metering systems are also new, and represent a significant upgrade to those used in the D90. The new camera boasts a 39-point AF array with 9 cross-type AF points and works in collaboration with a new 2016 pixel RGB metering sensor-to allow 3D AF tracking (essentially tracking by subject color, explained here). Other changes include the same combined live view/movie switch control as the 3100, and a significantly upgraded movie specification, up to ' full HD '-1920 x 1080 resolution at 24 fps. Unlike the D90, the D7000 can also maintain AF during live view shooting and movie, thanks to its AF-F (' full time ') AF mode. D90 owners have been waiting for a replacement camera for a while, and although the D90 isn't set for retirement quite yet, the D7000 certainly represents a compelling upgrade. It took longer than we'd hoped.?€ for a production D7000 to be supplied to us, but now that we've had one for a few weeks we've been able to produce an in-depth review. Read on to find out what we think of Nikon's newest DSLR ...16.2MP CMOS sensor1080p HD video recording with mic jack for external microphoneISO 100-6400 (plus H1 and H2 equivalent to ISO 12,800/25,600) 39-point AF system with 3D trackingNew 2016 pixel metering sensorScene Recognition System (see 2016 pixel sensor, above) aids WB/metering + focus accuracyTwin SD card slots3 8.0 inch LCD screenNew 921k dot Live View/movie shooting switchFull-time AF in Live View/movie modesUp to 6 fps continuous mode dialBuilt-drive shootingLockable in intervalometerElectronic virtual horizonShutter tested to 150 k actuations

The D7000 sits above the D90 in Nikon's current lineup, and as befits its new position in the range, the D7000 combines elements of the D90 with elements of the D300S-Nikon's current APS-C flagship. The most obvious physical clue to its new position is a magnesium alloy body shell, which up to now has been reserved for Nikon's top-end APS-C and full frame cameras.

' Under the hood ' though the differences are legion-a new 4 .2MP CMOS sensor, dual card slots, new 39-point AF array, ' true ' HD movie mode with full-time AF and more customization options, some of which are inherited from Nikon's professional DSLRs. Like the D90, the AF with Nikon D7000 supports's older AF and AF-D lenses (lower-end models are limited to compatibility with AF-S and AF-s optics only) but additionally, because the D7000 has an To indexing tab on its lens mount, up to 9 ' ' non-CPU lenses can also be registered with the Chamber.

This allows the use of virtually any lens To specification or later to be used in aperture priority or manual mode with the D7000, with almost no loss of functionality (apart from AF). Novice DSLR users might never look beyond the horizons offered by their kit lenses, but for the enthusiast, legacy support like this could well be a deal-clincher.

The overall dimensions of the D7000 are very similar to the older D90, but the heavier, magnesium alloy body shell and thicker rubber on the hand grip lend it a "more ' serious ' feel. Higher resolution sensor (14 .2MP vs. 12 .3MP) Choice of 12-bit or 14-bit NEF (RAW) 1080p HD movie modeLimited movie functionalityAF editing possible during video shooting Live View switch (basically the same as D3100) Faster AF in live view mode.Twin SD card slotsNon-CPU lens data function (allows registration of up to 9-G lenses with manual apertures) Magnesium alloy body shellWider ISO span (100-25,600 including ' H1 ' and ' H2 ') Newly developed 39-point AF system ' Quiet ' single frame advance mode ' Proper ' mirror lock-up (as distinct from ' exposure delay mode ') Lockable lid drive mode dialHigher maximum frame rate (6 FPS) Continuous shooting with The option (1-5 fps) 100% viewfinderChoice of 12-bit or 14-bit NEF (RAW) recording in compressed or lossless compressed formatsUp to 9 ' ' non-CPU lenses can be registered (same as D300s/by D3s/D3X) New EN-EL 15 lithium-ion batteryNew MB-D 11 battery pack (magnesium alloy construction)

Ergonomically, the D7000 and D90 are quite similar, and as you can see from this view of the back of the two cameras, in terms of its control layout, the D7000 is very close to the D90. Some controls have changed slightly (the D90 's ' Lv ' button becomes a spring loaded switch for example) but the number of control points is the same and everything is basically in the same place.

* In movie mode, 30 FPS is actually 29.97fps, 24 is actually 23.976fps.

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion/Recommendation/Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.To navigate the review simply use the next/previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X, Y and Z and ideally A, B and c. This article is Copyright 2010 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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