Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Digital Photography Equipment Review

Digital Photography Equipment Review—Nikon D7000 DSLR Camera

Just about everyone in the digital photography universe agrees that the Nikon D7000 is the best DSLR that Nikon has ever made. Many consider it Nikon’s most advanced camera at any price, and are convinced it produces higher quality images than any other Nikon priced less than $7,500. At $1,200, that comparison makes buying the D7000 an easy choice. For many “Nikon heads,” the new D7000 simply feels better in their hands and can be operated much faster than any other Nikon DSLR. Then, they experience the amazing reproduction of colors, especially under tough light conditions, and are in love with Nikon again.

Full-time professional photographers certainly agree that the D7000 has outstanding picture quality and ergonomics, but they are wary about its viewfinder. It may equal any viewfinder Nikon has ever made for DX, but it’s much smaller than FX cameras’ viewfinders. Pros also want to use the same set of lenses for their 35mm and FX cameras, so most of them will choose to stay with the FX. That still means the D7000 is an excellent choice for the majority of photographers, hobbyists as well as many pros.

Choosing Lenses

A DSLR camera with the quality of a Nikon D7000 deserves careful consideration of the lenses to use with it. For a “standard” lens, the 35mm f/1.8 is a much better choice than the 18–105mm zoom lens, which is an extra $300. (Read the PhotographyTalk.com article, Digital Photography—Tips to Help You Decide What Equipment to Pack for a Trip or Photo Session, Part 1 and Digital Photography—Why You’ll Take Better Pictures with a Fixed Lens than a Zoom Lens, Part 1.) The 35mm f/1.8 will allow you to shoot the vast majority of your digital photos and help you capture action in low light. An alternative is the 18–200mm VR II zoom lens, but it won’t perform like the 35mm f/1.8 when the light levels are low.

If you have a need for a wide-angle lens, then the 10–24mm will s

erve you well; however, 18–200mm VR II covers most of the focal length of the 10–24mm. If you decide to buy the 10–24mm, then it’s a better idea to choose the 28–300mm VR zoom lens. Reading the PhotographyTalk.com articles recommended above would help you understand why you don’t want to duplicate focal lengths when choosing lenses. The weight of the 28–300mm VR zoom lens may cause you to think twice about this alternate combination. The 35mm f/1.8 weighs next to nothing and if you choose the equally lightweight 18–55mm VR zoom, you’ve covered your “standard” and wide-angle needs, without carrying any heavy lenses.

If you must have a telephoto lens too, then consider the 55–200mm VR, 55–300mm VR or 70–300 VR with its much faster auto-focus for when you are shooting action. Combine any of these zoom lenses with the 10–24mm wide angle and the 35mm f/1.8 standard, and you have all the focal length you need.

Another important consideration when choosing lenses for your new Nikon D7000 DSLR camera is compatibility. The camera includes a focus motor, so the D7000 will operate with every AF lens manufactured since 1986. Nikon has cleverly added an aperture-ring feeler, which means metering is possible with all AI and newer manual-focus lenses. Share the data of a manual-focus lens in a menu and the D7000 will meter in full-color Matrix and provide EXIF information. Be aware that some non-Nikon lenses are incompatible with the D7000.

The Nikon D7000 DSLR is rich with many features that make it a superior camera.

Two SD memory slots to record to two cards simultaneously for backup.

The world’s first 2,016-segment RGB meter.

Two types of auto white balance.

An excellent auto-focus system.

Superb grip design.

Near-perfect metering and exposure.

Extremely quiet operation.

After careful examination, the Nikon D7000 DSLR camera will be near or at the top of the list for many serious amateurs and seasoned professionals.

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