on 24 March 2015
First of all, let me be clear that I have not purchased this camera from amazon. I have used another website.
I have been using D3100 for a couple of years made abut 10,000 shots and was feelign that my demands were higher that what the camera was offering. I was thinking about getting D610 or D7100. I have settled for D7100 mainly because, I had 35mm DX lens for D7100 and D610 would require great investment in lenses in order to fully exploit the sensor's capability. Also it is heavier. D7100 functionality is praised in every review, so I thought I will give it a shot.
I will get straight to business. What upgrades I really liked compared to D3100:
-More buttons. It means more confusion for the first few uses but if you are at least little bit intuitive you should be fine after a few days of usage. They will allow you to reach the desired setting much much quicker than you ever could with D3100. E.g. you need to press one button to change focus mode from AF-S to AF-C. Also, you need one button to change exposure metering and so on.
-Quicker AutoFocus. Yes, this has improved greatly from D3100 and I heard it has the same system as D610. It is bright, clear and you can feel quality performance. It has reduced incorrectly focused photographs compared to D3100.
-Auto White Balance. It has improved dramatically since D3100. I have never corrected AWB in my 1,000 shots made with D7100. Only shadows/highlights and added sharpness.
-U1 and U2 modes. These can be set individually independent from each other. I usually set one for moving objects and next for landscapes.
-Better dynamic range. I can get usable photos from completely underexposed photographs and get a nice sky from washed out highlights. Really noticeable difference and extremely useful. Of course, it is best if you know how to use fill flash or how to position your subject in order to avoid harsh shadows, but if your object cannot be moved or you cannot change an angle from which you are photographing, the wider dynamic range helps.
-Less noise in higher ISOs. Useful for indoor low-light shots like friends parties. Flash is too aggressive and invasive, so using fast prime lens 35mm f1.8 is a better option in some cases. However, if the light is really poor it will require high ISOs to be used with higher shutter speeds. Hence, this really helps as I had seen a lot of noise when shooting with D3100 at 1600 and higher ISOs. With D7100 3200 ISO looks OK.
-Better viewfinder. It is brighter but I did not find it much more useful in that sense. What I found useful was the gridlines and focusing speed has improved A LOT.
-Better LCD screen. LCD screen quality helps you in deciding if the image is in good or poor focus and also it shows lost highlights and focus point. However, if you focus then re-frame it will shot focus point where you have focused before re-framing.
-Dual SD card slot. Useful when shooting RAW+JPEG, or just having larger volume for photographs or having one backup card.
-Installed focus motor. I don't have any old lenses. One that I have borrowed is 28-80 old Nikon AF. It auto focuses really well with this lens. I will consider purchasing more older lenses without built in AF motor. It can save you some money if you have old lenses.
-Better ergonomics. It just feels better in the hand. All buttons are positioned conveniently and can be accessed without the need to stretch your fingers. Great.
-1.3x crop mode. Basically, it gives you a 1.3x crop from DX sensor. It is useful if you have to photograph a small object in a busy background and you cannot get close enough to isolate it. Useful for close up nature photography. Nice feature.
-AF fine tuning. Useful if the lens and the camera are not calibrated with each other. Mine was perfect so there was no need to use it.
What I was not impressed (not expected to be impressed) by:
-Image quality is not a big improvement. Basically, I was not expecting it to be better because the sensor size is the same and lens will have a much greater impact on image quality, not the camera body. Also, you make the photos. Better gear will only help you make them faster and give advantage of better post processing due to ability to retain large amounts of information.
-Exposure metering is a bit underexposing for me for most of the time indoors. I don't blame the camera, I blame my lack of skills to set-up it correctly. But it has exposure fine tuning so that is useful.
-24mgpx. For me it means larger files, harder to work with, longer processing in Photoshop. Not really useful as I do not make large prints. If there was my choice I would keep it at 10mgpx.
That is it basically. If you ask, is it worth paying Â£600? I will say YES just because my finances allowed me to and I knew what functions my D3100 was lacking. For people who are not that into the photography, I suggest spending money on something else.
I notice or remember something I will update the review.
on 1 October 2013
I have owned many Nikon cameras and this is a very good one. I currently use a D700 and a D300 and this addition was to upgrade from a very capable D90 which was mainly used by my wife. We take pictures all over the world and have found Nikon well able to provide consistent product quality, but in the end the picture is highly dependant on your skill to compose, and the quality of the lens used.
I have read many of the reviews (not all positive) and wanted to add just a few points. The camera is more robust than the D90, albeit slightly larger and heavier. The features include several useful additions, one of which is the dual card feature which allows overflow, or separate recording of video and still shots. The screen is larger and the menus are easier to navigate; fundamental changes to your shooting modes are much easier to make on the move. For those having difficulty I can only suggest a decent instruction manual/video.
The big selling feature is the 24.1 MP ability of this camera which is fine for some situations but inevitably results in some drawbacks such as the speed of file transfers etc. In my view this camera is not about this MP feature rather it is about a model which is a semi professional product, yet with features enabling the amateur to take great photos without particular reference to complicated menus. Personally I like the U1 and U2 easily switchable custom menus which mean you can easily change your shooting modes on the run.
In conclusion a great camera which still depends on you to take a good picture, A good upgrade from a D90, but I wouldn't upgrade from a D7000, and if you are looking to upgrade from your D300s again I wouldn't upgrade as I don't think the 24.1 MP adds much, unless you intend to put a poster up on a 'Bill Board'.
on 21 March 2013
I've only had a mere couple of hours or so with the camera since it arrived this morning - But I wanted to post my first impressions with the hope it will be beneficial to others, especially those with a D7000, who may be on the fence about upgrading.
Of course, you may still have to think long and hard about if the upgrade is worthwhile, and for the most part, it may not be recommended. It isn't a big jump between the D7000 and D7100, but there are some improvements that are immediately visible that have, already, made me confident about making the upgrade.
So, although I hope to write a more in-depth review in time, I wanted to give an 'out of the box' reaction.
The camera body is familiar to the D7000 for the most part, albeit with some improvements to the button layout and more of them. To me, it feels sturdier in the hand, more easy and comfortable to use and generally a nice refined improvement upon the D7000 design.
The menu has seen a slight improvement, and coupled with the larger and more detailed screen it provides a slightly more fuss-free and more beneficial experience, especially in Picture Review.
Design aside, here are my initial findings after putting it through my own tests:
- Autofocus speed and accuracy is snappy, accurate and more robust thanks to the 51 AF Point system. I couldn't be happier with the sharpness I'm getting from my DX lenses - And I seemingly won't need to use the dreaded AF Fine Tune. Again, and as with the rest of the camera, it feels like a more refined and tuned D7000. And one small point is that even moving the focus point between all 51 is quick and snappy.
- ISO performance is, I find, much improved from the D7000. I wouldn't like to go over 1600 with my D7000 really, but I'm finding images that are up 6400 with the D7100 are much more useable. It's a DX sensor, so there's no comparing with a full-frame, but it's the best performance I've seen on any of my previous Nikon DX DSLRs (D60, D90, D7000)
- Image Quality: Well, I'm sorry but I'm going to have to mention megapixels here. We all know that higher megapixels don't mean better images as a rule, but the 24.1MP CMOS does deserve a mention. It helps the ISO performance, yes, but I do have to say I'm mighty impressed with the detail I am attaining, even with 100% crop. For people who want to print big - You won't be disappointed.
Basically put, overall image quality and detail is superior to the D7000 - Even with the standard 18-105 kit lens.
Coupled with the lack of an Optical Low Pass Filter, images are coming out sharper, of that there is no doubt.
The D7100 is, in essence, a more refined and tuned version of the D7000 with a nice sensor upgrade which may be the deciding factor, for some.
So is it worth the upgrade if you already own a D7000 or D5200?
Maybe, verging on the probably not, unless you have the cash to do so with ease. If you can do it without it hurting too much, I would say go for it. There are some real noticeable improvements.
Otherwise I'd say put your money towards getting some good glass, first and foremost.
That said, after previously owning a D7000 I am currently ecstatic with my purchase of the D7100.
Owners of entry level DSLR's looking to upgrade will be blown away, and if you are able I would recommend whole-heartedly.
Those with 5200's or D7000's won't be chomping at the bit to get hold of one, but if you do choose to buy or part exchange, you wouldn't be disappointed either.
These are only initial observations, granted. But I tend to find with any new camera that initial observations tend to be the most powerful.
The D7100 is set to take pride of place in the Nikon DX line-up, and I'm over the moon to own one.
I have been using the Nikon D3200 and D3100 for the last few years, gradually learning more about what you can do with the new generation of DSLRs, but was convinced to buy this model, by what I had read at a very helpful website called photographylife.
Apart from extensive guides to which cameras and lenses to start with, they provide very detailed reviews, which test particular cameras against similar rivals. The D7100 was reviewed and tested by Nasim Mansurov, who said in his summary: "Without a doubt, the Nikon D7100 is the best DX camera produced by Nikon to date. It packs a rich set of features with its 51-point autofocus system found only on professional Nikon DSLRs, weather sealing, great ergonomics, beautiful LCD and a rich menu system - all in a lightweight magnesium alloy camera body that weighs less than its predecessor. Its high-resolution 24.1 MP sensor delivers superb performance at both low and high ISO levels"
This convinced me to buy and I am very glad that I did. The camera feels like a solid, professional tool and has a wealth of buttons/knobs to help you access all the features that you could need. It has a very thick and comprehensive manual that is much more detailed than those that came with the previous Nikon DSLRs I have owned - where I have needed to buy additional guides. With this model it feels like you have a real investment that will allow you to do anything you want and the information panels help you see instantly which options you have selected.
The rear display is bigger and brighter than on other Nikon models I have seen and the selecter for modes and release, is more solid and has failsafe buttons to stop your selection moving unless you choose it to. With other cameras I have lost time and potential pictures through the mode slipping into another one at the crucial moment, without me noticing. No chance of being in 'scene' mode when you meant to be using aperture priority, with this model.
Looking through the lens, the autofocus is again a step up for Nikon DX DSLRs and you get a much clearer picture of where and how you are focusing. The 1.3 crop feature looks interesting and can be switched in easily using the function button which defaults to this. I also liked the position of the button to preview depth of field. Overall, everything feels right about this camera and it has to be as good as it gets for a DX format DSLR and a top recommendation.
on 11 October 2013
Ok, so I'm writing this review to hopefully help anyone out there who was in a similar position to me. I'm not going to go into too much depth with the specs
You can see them all over the internet; this is more of my story....
Nikon D5100 with 18-55 kit lens
Tamron 70-200 F2.8
Nikon AFS 35 F1.8
Tamron 90 Macro F2.8
I've owned the D5100 for about 18 months, but recently upgraded to the D7100 and here's my reasons for doing so...
Firstly, I'd like to start off with what you may typically read on the internet (I did months and months of research before I finally made the plunge and the camera's I was looking at were D7000, D7100 and D600)
Every camera will have its pro's and con's - whilst one might be better in one area, it may lack in the other
D600 is an FX camera, meaning high ISO shots will appear less noisy but the D7100 has a much improved focus system.
D600 fastest shutter speed is 1/4000 - D7100 is 1/8000
That's just two example's; you can search the internet for more.
So, to start, you really need to be realistic about what you want/need. Yes, there is a difference, especially when there's quite a substantial amount of money that can be saved. (I'll come back to this later)
Golden rule to remember is good glass (lens) is far more important than the body.
Bodies depreciate in value very quickly but ggood glass doesn't tend to drop much in price.
For the most part I'm happy with the glass I have, the only thing missing is an Ultra-Wide, I rarely use the kit lens and most of the time you would find the 70-200 attached to the camera (it's a superb lens) - all be it, seriously miss-matched on the D5100 :O
So firstly I looked at the D600, quite possibly the best FX sensor camera for the money going. My lenses (for the most part, i.e. excluding the kit lens) would be fine on this camera. I'd have to adjust for the focal length I was used to, but that wouldn't be a problem. However, as previously mentioned I'd still have to a get an Ultra Wide lens and therefore the upgrade cost has just increased. Not to mention the 24-70 (replacing the kit lens focal length - not like for like, i know as i'm talking about the f2.8 version) which is supposed to be an absolute dream lens to use.
I began to look at it from a logical point of view, if I bought the body now, saved for the lenses I wanted, maybe 24 months + (currently saving for a wedding)I would have what I wanted... But then, 24 months down the line, the price of a 2nd hand D600 would have significantly dropped, not to mention what else Nikon bought out.
Plus, I realised I was saving for a wedding and I don't think the misses would be too happy - despite how understanding she is of my obsession :)
.. Back to the drawing board... but this time I took a different approach (actually I took the approach I mentioned earlier "to start, you really need to be realistic about what you want/need".
I'm a hobbyist, I don't get paid for what I do, but someday I'd like to.
So, do I need FX? - No (I shoot family/friends/zoo's/macro's/days out, etc.) - so actually the further reach works for me. Yes the HIGH ISO would be nice, but nice for an extra £500 (or so) - NO
So, that left me with the D7000 and the D7100
You can read all over the internet how there isn't much of a difference between these 2 models but the thing is... there is!
And here's why I ended up going with the D7100 - because these things are important to me, these are things missing from my D5100 (and more to the point, the D7000)
24mp - it's not all about the MP, unless you print BIG... that's what they say right? ... Correct, but I crop and heavily post process, so to me it's very useful.
51 AF points - compared to the D5100's 11.. Yes please, also consider this is the same AF algorithms system borrowed from the D4
The 1.3x crop mode - not really bothered, may use it at the ZOO/Safari Park/etc. but if it wasn't there I wouldn't cry about it.
The "zoom to 100%" OK button - something that surprisingly comes in really handy for checking sharpness, after using it, it's hard to imagine a camera without it.
The better LCD screen - yeah, it's a nice feature, pics look great on it... but it's no substitute for the histogram.
The EXPEED 3 Processor - more advanced technology, got to be a good thing right!?
Better White Balance - yup, brilliant little thing
These are just a few of the differences, but for the sake of £200-£300 more I think it's worth the upgrade
- Had I not had my lens collection, it would be different, in fact - I wouldn't be considering an upgrade at all.
Ultimately if you're considering an upgrade then consider what it is you're camera isn't giving you.
Wow, we're this far on in this "review" and I've barely actually reviewed the product.... If at all!
And I haven't even mentioned image quality... which surely is a key aspect!
I'll tell you why, there are many sites out there that can tell you all the technical specs, the dxo score, etc., etc... Seriously you'll get lost If you're not careful.
But, the thing is, all modern cameras are capable of taking fantastic images, so long as they are in the right hands.
They're just tools with different functions to get you that image.
You're not going to catch any images if you don't like your camera, because you won't use it.
But, just to please those who are curious....
The D7100 seriously is an amazing camera, the auto focus is unbelievably fast and seriously accurate (something which lacked hugely on my d5100)
The 'keeper' rate has increased significantly - sadly my hard drive space has filled up significantly to ;)
The whole interface of the camera is a huge step up from the D5100:
The weight and build feels more solid
The dual dials are a god send
Dual SD card slots, yup another blessing.
51 AF points which cover pretty much the whole frame... just WOW
The OLED display through the view finder - so much clearer
The viewfinder - although not a full frame size - it's much brighter and bigger than the D5100
Dedicated buttons for ISO, etc. - finally no more menu digging
Fast shutter and flash sync speed - a great bonus
More accurate white balance - no more fiddling in post processing
but more importantly... It just feels so much better in the hands, meaning you rarely want to put it down.
The not so good (allegedly)
Banding - oh no, if I under expose my shot by -9EV then bump shadows in post I get serious banding.
- There are 2 fixes to this:
1) You can get software to correct for this, it is out there.
2) Put the camera back in the box and send it back because you're too stupid to use one!!
- sorry to be blunt but seriously under exposing by that much in the vein hope you can get detail recovered... why?!?
The real world: I haven't noticed anything that got me worried, I read about it and got worried, I used the camera properly and it's no concern.
No live view aperture control in video mode: Oh no! What am I going to do... perhaps I should have invested in a real video camera!
And I think that's about it for 'problems' you will see flying around the internet.
Finally and thanks for sticking with me thus far....
Is the image quality miles and miles better than the D5100? No
Will it help me capture better images? Absolutely!
And that Ladies and Gentlemen, is why I bought the D7100
on 24 November 2013
I bought this 2 weeks ago and know it was the right decision. I have already got some of my best ever photos with it. It needs good glass and good technique to get the best out of it. It is very unforgiving on camera shake if you use a non-VR prime lens, for instance. I can't see DX cameras getting much better than this, to be honest.
on 29 March 2013
I'm not new to photography and have had several Nikon DX bodies over the years including my much beloved D300. My initial findings are that Nikon has hit the ball out of the park with this one. I was torn between getting a D7100 or biting the bullet and going full frame with a D600. With the widely reported issues of oil/dust on the D600 sensor I finally chose the D7100 and I have absolutely no regrets. Partnered with good glass the picture quality is awesome with extremely low noise up to relatively high ISO's. This is a fully featured well made camera which simply does what it's meant to and that is take excellent pictures with the minimum of fuss. As a bonus the camera reduced in price by £87 before it was delivered and Amazon very happy to refund me the difference so overall I'm well pleased. Highly recommended.
on 3 July 2013
Well I have it now for 2 days, and man what a wealth of functions it has "mind blowing". I came from a Nikon D3100 and what a change it was. The images are so sharp. I was gonna go for a Nikon D600 but from what I read and seen on Youtube just put me clean off, Even to this date that problem still exists. "Way too much dough for that kinda chance"
It will take me months to get the swing of all the features but for now its a winner in my eyes, I will update in a few months..
on 19 January 2014
I'm a leica M9 user and lent this to my son and borrowed his D3200. I used to own a D100 and then a D300 and changed to a Leica M to save weight as I had a host of good, but heavy lenses. I used the D3200 and although a great camera did not offer me enough flexibility that I could quickly access. I am also a photographer who prints what he takes with very little adjustments. Anything more to me is Art not photography. My son does 'Art' and can produce an incredible picture. I will never match his skills, but my pictures are what I saw, not what I wanted to see.
The D7100 has blown me away, I have no knowledge of canon DSLR, but know that even if you are a novice this is one camera that you will be able to progress with. It is also very much like the D100 (I had this for 5yrs!) is that it will not be out dated too much in the future, unless photography takes another turn eg 3d or just pictures by light.
At my age you still remember full frame, different films for different lighting and ISO. The latter gave grain or now noise. A film of ISO 800 and 1600 was really grainy or noisy. Now even at 3200 you get a good picture so IOS is just another way of metering. I just wish digital could do an ISO of 25 as you could with film to get that really slow shutter speed.
Now back to this camera, it offers more that I will ever use and my wife and pick it up and take a picture. Job done. I now use a 35mm F1.8 and the standard 18-105 lens and these provide every thing for every day use. you could get a f2.8 zoom, but with then weight goes up. I do have a 70-300 for when I go for a long walk with the dog., but has only been use once! The 35mm is always with me. It gives the so called 'standard lens' for DX and good low light ability and close focus.
I suggest that if you want a camera that you can changes lenses with then the D3200 is for you. If you want more then the D5200 is it, but with this it can take forever to get to the settings and the picture opportunity may be missed. The D7100 is both these camera in one plus a lot more. I just love the Auto continuous and single focus system. You change enough buttons to call up the setting that you want quick access to. I have the preview button set to spot metering, the function button set to calling up 'my menu' (this is where I keep all the items I use regally even ISO sensitivity). You can combine this with the main dial as well and have four instant setting to hand.
I don't use the video!! Even after 40yrs I'm still trying to master still photography. My vids will be birthday parties and very much hit and miss. But all cameras now offer this even the new leica M
Although still expensive this camera could be a long term investment. The D7000 that is still on sale could be an alternative. The D7100 stole it for me because of the Wi fi ability and the Auto focus for single and continuous servo. Means you never miss a picture by being out of focus.
By the way, my son still has the leica M9, as he knows if he handed it back I would simply sell it.
on 30 August 2013
Very happy with this camera. Some issues with using my nikon f4 and kenko 1.4 TC hunts way more than on d7000.
Wildlife lovers this is a great camera as the extra 1.3 crop is brilliant, although you have to double check your composition, I have accidentally cuts birds feet of in the crop mode as they have moved a fraction or I have due to the weight of the sigma 150-500
Basically yes you can do the crop in lightroom etc yada ya. Thats all it does, however the point most people are missing is that I can crop in an extra 1.3 times on an equvalent 750mm making that an 975mm in film terms at the same resolution you start at with before you start cropping on the d7000. So my picture cropped in on the camera will be higher resoloution than the same on a d7000. Thats why its an ideal birding camera. Also whilst cropped in the burst rate is better.
Continuos firing is not amazing as the buffer should have been bigger. Not been an issue except for when I was trying to get Buzzards in flight as they never stay still unless they are sat on a post or something. For most things your fine if you use your head and do not want to just blindly fire and hope you get a good shot. I have heard the sony slt cameras at some of the reserves I have been to and we all take the mick out of the owner saying he's going to sew the birds to the tree with his sewing machine camera, as thats what they sound like.
Built in hdr is handy but its a bit of a faff to get to and you need to be in jpg mode and it's real easy to forget and not turn back to raw mode. Would have been better as a special mode on the dial .
Noise is better than d7000 which is useful
In short if you can get a good price for selling your d7000 and the price of this drops to say 700-800 body only then its a good investment but only if you need the extra features. If you are upgrading from a d3100 you may be a bit lost as its quite a jump and you may find d5200 better suited to your needs.
Also look at the d600 as the body only price is dropping all the time. I so so nearly bought the d600 but was put off at having to buy even more glass and as I spend most of my time at 500mm wishing I had an 800mm I didn't want to go further back in terms of zoom.
There isn't much that comes close to this camera at all. The high end pentax looks good and the new Cannon 7d MKii if it comes out may try and beat it.But for now thats it.