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Showing posts with label D7200. Show all posts
Showing posts with label D7200. Show all posts

3/24/2015

Nikon D7200 review

The D7200 upgrades Nikon's APS-C workhorse with NFC, Wi-Fi and improved low-light shooting

Amateur Photography - The D7100 has been Nikon's enthusiast-level camera of choice for the past few years, but it was beginning to show its age in terms of connectivity, even in a field where manufacturers prefer to focus on pixel counts and burst speeds than Wi-Fi. A successor, the D7200, was announced earlier this month and the Photography Show in Birmingham was our first chance to get our hands on one.

The D7200 isn't a major upgrade over the D7100, but rather a refinement; it adds Wi-Fi and NFC for quick pairing to a smartphone, 60p video recording and a 15% battery life improvement. Otherwise, the specifications should sound familiar to D7100 owners, with a 24.2-megapixel APS-C sensor with no optical low-pass filter, 51-point AF system and EXPEED 4 image processor, all wrapped up in a weather-sealed magnesium alloy body.

That sensor is capable of ISO 100-25,600 shooting at up to 6fps (7fps in 1.3x crop mode). Expanded ISO modes are limited to black and white photography only. Burst speeds remain unchanged from the D7100, but Nikon has expanded the camera's buffer over the outgoing model for longer continuous bursts, meaning 27 RAW exposures or 100 JPEGs. This should make it an ideal camera for shooting fast-moving subjects - especially when paired with a 1/8000s maximum shutter speed. The AF points are now sensitive down to -3EV, which should help low light shooting. The D7100 was limited to -2EV. Unfortunately we weren't able to give this a proper test on the Photography Show floor, so we'll have to wait for a full review to pass final judgment.

In terms of design, little has changed here from the D7100. There are still plenty of buttons and dials on the front, top, and rear of the body, with an LCD display on the top for quickly checking shooting settings. Most of the buttons are within easy reach of your right hand, although the playback button is still squeezed in on the left, making it difficult to reach. As we've come to expect from Nikon's dSLR range, the mode dial locks automatically to prevent accidental changes, but it's still tricky to adjust one-handed.

The 3.2in, 1.2m dot LCD display on the back of the camera is completely fixed, which is a little disappointing but arguably not a surprise; Canon's rival 7D Mk II has a fixed display as well. It looked sharp and was bright enough to see clearly indoors, although we'll have to take one outside to see how it copes with direct sunlight.

Build quality was easily on par with the D7100, and although we found it comfortable to hold others have complained that the grip is a little small given the size and weight of the camera. At 765g without a lens, it's certainly not lightweight but feels reassuringly hefty with a high-quality piece of glass attached.

Video performance has been improved over the D7100 with 1080p 60fps recording, although only when the camera is set to 1.3x crop mode. Two new picture modes, Flat and Clarity, can be used with live view, and ISO sensitivity can be set to automatic when shooting in manual mode. A Zebra stripe highlight display helps confirm exposure and the built-in stereo microphone is a welcome addition as well, although naturally the hot shoe mount means you can add an external mic if you need clearer audio.

The D7200 has a lot to live up to, as the outgoing model is arguably the most desirable Nikon dSLR before you make the leap to full-frame, but we walked away from our early hands-on impressed. Wi-Fi and NFC will be welcome additions for nature photographers and the improved low-light shooting is a major bonus too.

It will be going on sale later this month, with UK prices expected to start around £940 for a body-only camera or £1,120 with the optional 18-105mm VR kit lens. We're hoping to have a full review in the next few weeks, so be sure to check back if you're looking for a new digital SLR.