Nikon D7200 / SHOOTING REPORT
The high-end DX-format Nikon D7000 series started with the D7000 in October 2010 and it evolved to the D7100 in March 2013. The third-generation D7200 inherits the basic specification, appearance, and the button arrangement from the predecessor. This means no major change was necessary because the series was highly rated since the beginning. On this solid foundation, all they had to do is to further fine-tune the image quality and the AF performance. In this report, I used the kit lens 180-140mm f/3.5-5.6G in many situations.
( Photography & Text : 4beats )
The D7200 generates outputs of 24 megapixels or 6000x4000 pixels, as the D7100 did. But, instead of EXPEED 3, it has a new imaging processor EXPEED 4, which improved image quality including white balance and high sensitivity performance. The regular ISO sensitivity has been expanded to ISO25600 which is a 2-step increase. I tried ISO3200 to shoot a diver swimming with a zebra shark in an aquarium. I could use 1/1000 seconds to freeze them and I'm fine with the noise unless I enlarge it to a big size. With this high sensitivity performance, I can raise sensitivity without worrying about noise. Actually, I could even stop down. In other words, I set the shutter speed and aperture before ISO sensitivity. This approach was impossible without the improved high sensitivity performance.
At the stairs with blinking LED illuminations. It was dark, but the AF was brisk. The D7200's AF has improved low light performance, and actually it's the same highly rated one used for the D750 just released last fall. And, this means the central AF point among the 51 AF points can measure distance even in a situation as dark as -3EV. And, the same AF point can work with F8 even with a tele-converter attached. In other words, it supports AF even when it's hard to focus with an OVF. And, I had no problem taking this shot.
Nigh scene at ISO6400. I see some noise in the gradation of the sky, but it's practically good enough. The point lights don't look jaggy but natural. See how dependable the EXPEED 4 is?
How about moving subjects in the daytime? I shot the storm boat wide open with 6fps continuous shooting speed. At first, it focused on the splash behind the boat. Maybe my AF setting wasn't right. So, I kept changing it until I got some shots in focus. It has several modes for the number of AF points and for the way it follows subjects, and they seem to be a bit complicated. So, I recommend practicing it before real shooting.
It perfectly followed the speed of the running child. Because you can switch the AF mode in the viewfinder, you can change it whenever you need.
This is a highly contrast scene. The texture drawing of the waves and the ladles is wonderful. And, the arm looks so realistic because of the smooth tonal gradation.
The old man is gathering information for horse racing. I like the texture drawing of his cap and jacket. Except for the little dullness wide open at the tele-end, the overall performance of the kit lens is great.
Don't worry. It doesn't mean she doesn't want to go to school. She appeared to be looking around her feet earnestly. Despite the backlight, the colors and texture of her clothes and handbag look natural.
Even though it has a large number of pixels, it has a wide dynamic range. I shot the early blooming cherry blossoms with the sky. The color reproduction is neither too colorful nor too quiet, which is just as we see and quite well-tuned. The memory colors tend to be different from the reality, so I played it at the site and found no difference from what I saw. By the way, the picture control was set to "standard."
This is the other view of the last image. The APS-C sensor is stuffed with 24 megapixels, but there's no unnaturalness in the crossing lines. Even the remote buildings are resolved perfectly with a great 3D quality. The omission of lowpass filter makes a difference.
Who's the rival of this little flagship? It's the full frame cameras.
To feel how the AF improved, it's best to try it. But, hopefully, I could demonstrate how it evloved from the D7100 by showing its high performance in dark situations and the excellent image quality. The D7200 inherits the D7100's no-LPF high-density sensor, which was designed after the D800E's full frame sensor with LPF cancellation. This process was long enough to improve the handling to the complete level because of the wonderful resolution, 3D quality, tonal gradation, and color reproduction in the JPEG format. In other words, the D7200 has overcome issues in high-density sensor.
There're other changes in addition the AF and the high sensitivity performance. Connectivity has improved thanks to the built-in Wireless LAN and NFC. The movie function now supports slow motion recording and it controls exposure so the slow motion movie looks evenly exposed throughout the playtime. And, it supports time lapse, too. In addition, unexpectedly, the viewfinder provides better view! I had no problem with the D7100's viewfinder, but I found the D7200's one is clearer, less yellowish, and easier to feel the 3D quality. This may be due to the multilayer coating on the main mirror. And, even though there's no major difference in the appearance, the new "press line" on the built-in flash cover makes it look sharper.
The image quality of this APS-C body can rival with the full frame cameras, and the compact body provides better handling. If you want a small system without sacrificing image quality and shooting capability, don't hesitate. The D7200 is the high-end camera for all level of users.
( 18.03.2015 )