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| p.1 #1 · New to Nikon: My "Field Test" of the D7100/Canon Comparison |
In the FWIW department, I had the chance to "field test" my Nikon D7100. This is my first Nikon product after thirty years of using first Minolta and then Canon gear, and I came to the D7100 from the Canon 40D,1D3 and 7D. My observations are as follows:
1. On this outing, I found the D7100's autofocus system is a bit better than the 1D3, much better than the 7D and far superior to the 40D. Once I learn the various D7100 autofocus settings, I expect the keeper rate to increase substantially. It is very, very good.
2. The D7100's sensor is simply excellent. Even with the extra resolution, noise performance is much better than the 7D at pretty much every ISO. Interestingly though, the 40D's files held up very well in comparison through 800 or even 1000 ISO. The D7100's high ISO performance is much better (as you would expect). However, the sensor demands really good glass. I loved the Tokina 12-24 on Canon - on the Nikon, not so much.
3. The D7100's metering, flesh tones and colors are all far superior (to my eye) than the 7D. The D7100's files are very sharp and clean. Again, the 40D/1D3 files hold up pretty well by comparison.
4. The D7100's buffer is indeed limited, but I did not find it to be crippling at all.
5. I was extremely surprised by and very impressed with the performance of the Nikon 70-300 VR zoom. It may be an inexpensive consumer lens, but on the D7100 it performed well above my expectations - sharp, precise focusing, nice contrast etc. I had been using a Canon 70-200 f4IS, which is a tremendous optic, but the Nikon more than held its own. That said, there does not appear to be a Nikon equivalent at the same quality/price point as either Canon's 17-55 2.8IS or 24-105 f4IS. I did not find the pricey Nikon 85 1.8g to be any better than the Canon 1.8, which sells for much less. Same with the Nikon 50 1.4g vs. the Canon 50 1.4. I can't speak to the 70-200 2.8s, or the bigger glass, but in general, it seems Canon's lenses give more performance for fewer dollars.
6. Canon's DPP is much better than Nikon's bundled software.
Bottom line: The D7100 is a great value and a very capable and solid performer. The 70-300VR is better than advertized and an insane bargain. And, the 40D really was an outstanding camera.