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gstafleu
01-24-2005, 03:53 PM
The following compares the Maxxum 7D and the Nikon D70 regarding the amount of settings you can change via controls on the camera as opposed via the menu. I suppose I could have posted this in the Nikon DSLR forum or the KM DSLR forum (but not both :)), but I hope this forum is OK because of the dual nature (brand-wise) of the posting.

When I first read the previews for the Maxxum 7D, I got the impression that one of its strong points (in addition to anti-shake) was the large amount of settings that you could change via dials, levers, buttons and so on, that is without having to go to through the menu.

Now that the reviews are out, I decided to compare the 7D with the Nikon D70 on that score. As I own neither camera (I'm still making up my mind about DSLR's) I went by the reviews om dpreview. I concentrated on the shooting settings only, not the playback.

I summarized my findings in a table: click here to see the table. (http://publish.uwo.ca/~gerard/Controls.htm)

What I found, a bit to my surprise, is that the 7D and the D70 are just about equal in this respect. True, there are some cases where a certain setting has a dedicated control on the 7D while on the D70 you press a button and rotate a command dial, but I can't see how that is a big difference.

What do you think, did I get it right that the 7D and the D70 are about equal in this respect? Did you, like I did at first, expect that the D7 would have much more outside controls than any of it competition? After all, they did sacrifice the top LCD display for this.

Gerard Stafleu

D70FAN
01-24-2005, 04:01 PM
The following compares the Maxxum 7D and the Nikon D70 regarding the amount of settings you can change via controls on the camera as opposed via the menu. I suppose I could have posted this in the Nikon DSLR forum or the KM DSLR forum (but not both :)), but I hope this forum is OK because of the dual nature (brand-wise) of the posting.

When I first read the previews for the Maxxum 7D, I got the impression that one of its strong points (in addition to anti-shake) was the large amount of settings that you could change via dials, levers, buttons and so on, that is without having to go to through the menu.

Now that the reviews are out, I decided to compare the 7D with the Nikon D70 on that score. As I own neither camera (I'm still making up my mind about DSLR's) I went by the reviews om dpreview. I concentrated on the shooting settings only, not the playback.

I summarized my findings in a table: click here to see the table. (http://publish.uwo.ca/~gerard/Controls.htm)

What I found, a bit to my surprise, is that the 7D and the D70 are just about equal in this respect. True, there are some cases where a certain setting has a dedicated control on the 7D while on the D70 you press a button and rotate a command dial, but I can't see how that is a big difference.

What do you think, did I get it right that the 7D and the D70 are about equal in this respect? Did you, like I did at first, expect that the D7 would have much more outside controls than any of it competition? After all, they did sacrifice the top LCD display for this.

Gerard Stafleu

Very good analysis. But you left out that the monochrome info LCD was left off of the 7D to accomodate those somewhat garish nobs. At the expense of ease of use and increased power consumption.

gstafleu
01-24-2005, 06:39 PM
So I wonder what justifies the $600 price difference in the body? It can't be just the AS. Maybe the D7 is much more ruggedly built? Although I don't remember reading anything about that. The sensor seems to be about the same as well, with similar ISO/Noise performance. The camera doesn't seem to be much faster in shots/second. Puzzling.

D70FAN
01-24-2005, 08:49 PM
So I wonder what justifies the $600 price difference in the body? It can't be just the AS. Maybe the D7 is much more ruggedly built? Although I don't remember reading anything about that. The sensor seems to be about the same as well, with similar ISO/Noise performance. The camera doesn't seem to be much faster in shots/second. Puzzling.

I think I will reserve my own opinion until I actually "play" with one. But it is looking like an exercise in mediocrity with built-in image stabilization.

Jeff says "built like a tank" in his conclusion.

Sorry Jeff, but for $1600 USB2.0 Full Speed (1.1 new version) and a slow processor, and buffer to flash interface, are pretty unacceptable. Add to that semi-crappy software (worse than Nikon?) and I can't believe you weren't disapplointed. I know I was.

erichlund
01-25-2005, 09:47 AM
So I wonder what justifies the $600 price difference in the body? It can't be just the AS. Maybe the D7 is much more ruggedly built? Although I don't remember reading anything about that. The sensor seems to be about the same as well, with similar ISO/Noise performance. The camera doesn't seem to be much faster in shots/second. Puzzling.

How much would the Nikkor 70-200 VR be without the VR. Probably about the same as the 80-200s, since they are optically similar. That's hundreds of dollars. The 7D makes nearly every lens a "VR", so that, in itself probably does justify the price difference. Of course, I'm not comparing any other features here, though I'd also say the metal frame and mostly metal body also contribute to the price difference.

Still, I'll stick with D70. I'm satisfied with the performance.

Cheers, Eric

elder
01-26-2005, 01:06 PM
Hi! What will you buy for the same price: KM D7d + Tokina 24-200/3,5-5,6 (new) or Nikon D70 kit (18-70/3,5-4,5) + 80-200/2,8 AF-D (used).
I`m at the edge...of brain damage :o

Jredtugboat
01-27-2005, 07:12 PM
I think I will reserve my own opinion until I actually "play" with one. But it is looking like an exercise in mediocrity with built-in image stabilization.

Jeff says "built like a tank" in his conclusion.

Sorry Jeff, but for $1600 USB2.0 Full Speed (1.1 new version) and a slow processor, and buffer to flash interface, are pretty unacceptable. Add to that semi-crappy software (worse than Nikon?) and I can't believe you weren't disapplointed. I know I was.

George,

I have to admit that the KM 7D has become a dark horse in the nationally televised "Who wants to be Julian's New Digital SLR?" competition. (Check your local listings. Dancing girls, sword juggling, etc.)

I really dig all those knobs--I don't like nested controls though I recognize that on certain small devices like PDAs and cell phones they're a necessary evil. But for such an expensive device I would like one-dial/one-function control.

What really concerns me about the KM 7D is the image sharpness issue that Jeff brought up. What's with having to dial up sharpness? Is that going to affect the image? Increase noise, generate artifacts, etc.?

A lot of my shooting is indoors--mostly candids of friends--and I like the AS for that reason, since I tend to be down in the f 2 range on my PShot G2 these days. But if the image is going to be blurry (ooops, I meant, "less sharp") then what's the point?

The ersatz USB 2.0 is a real bummer. But what's the buffer to flash interface? An additional time bottleneck between the flash and the buffer as it disgorges its contents onto your storage media?

Julian

D70FAN
01-27-2005, 08:43 PM
George,

I have to admit that the KM 7D has become a dark horse in the nationally televised "Who wants to be Julian's New Digital SLR?" competition. (Check your local listings. Dancing girls, sword juggling, etc.)

I really dig all those knobs--I don't like nested controls though I recognize that on certain small devices like PDAs and cell phones they're a necessary evil. But for such an expensive device I would like one-dial/one-function control.

What really concerns me about the KM 7D is the image sharpness issue that Jeff brought up. What's with having to dial up sharpness? Is that going to affect the image? Increase noise, generate artifacts, etc.?

A lot of my shooting is indoors--mostly candids of friends--and I like the AS for that reason, since I tend to be down in the f 2 range on my PShot G2 these days. But if the image is going to be blurry (ooops, I meant, "less sharp") then what's the point?

The ersatz USB 2.0 is a real bummer. But what's the buffer to flash interface? An additional time bottleneck between the flash and the buffer as it disgorges its contents onto your storage media?

Julian

Again, since I've never tried the 7D I can only go by past experience with other cameras. For the price the 7D just doesn't provide much beyond the AS feature. But maybe that's enough.

Free advice is just that, and can be tinged with bias as you may have already seen. Personally, the 7D is not my cup of tea, but it may be exactly what you want.

I think the problem is that I really wanted the 7D to offer AS and a decent dSLR, for $1500, and I only got half the request. But then it's pretty much been that way since Konica came into the picture, starting with the A and the Z series. :(

gstafleu
01-28-2005, 09:42 AM
George,

What really concerns me about the KM 7D is the image sharpness issue that Jeff brought up. What's with having to dial up sharpness? Is that going to affect the image? Increase noise, generate artifacts, etc.?
Julian

As I understand it, but my understanding is limited, digital cameras inherently take soft pictures. That means that if a camera has sharpnes settings like -2,-1,0,1,2, then -2 really means "as is", in other words the camera software does not apply a sharpening algorithm to the image.

I've also read in several places that the sharpening in software like PhotoShop (Elements or otherwise), Corel PhotoPaint etc is generally better than the in-camera sharpening.

If all this is correct, you can make a case for "the softer the better," because sharpening with your favorite image editor will give better results.

D70FAN
01-28-2005, 10:10 AM
As I understand it, but my understanding is limited, digital cameras inherently take soft pictures. That means that if a camera has sharpnes settings like -2,-1,0,1,2, then -2 really means "as is", in other words the camera software does not apply a sharpening algorithm to the image.

I've also read in several places that the sharpening in software like PhotoShop (Elements or otherwise), Corel PhotoPaint etc is generally better than the in-camera sharpening.

If all this is correct, you can make a case for "the softer the better," because sharpening with your favorite image editor will give better results.

Actually, this is a minor issue as far as I'm concerned. Although for a $1600 camera you would think that this (and several other) minor detail(s) would have been covered.

As Jeff pointed out in the review sharpening can be easily adjusted in-camera (as is true with most dSLR's).

External sharpening does work very well in my experience, but I really like to avoid post-processing every shot if I can make a satisfactory adjustment in the camera.

erichlund
01-28-2005, 01:19 PM
As I understand it, but my understanding is limited, digital cameras inherently take soft pictures.

<<snip>>

If all this is correct, you can make a case for "the softer the better," because sharpening with your favorite image editor will give better results.

Not really true. I've taken pictures with the Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 on my D70 where I wish the image were less sharp. I've heard people using this lens for portraits, which is OK if you are looking for character lines, but there's nothing "soft" about the image it produces. I've also seen similar sharpness from the Nikkor 70-200 VR. One cost $100, the other $1500. I'll leave it to you to guess which I have.

Cameras with less sharp lenses take less sharp pictures. The CCD can limit sharpness, but with quality cameras, that becomes less likely the more pixels you have. I don't see jaggies from my 6.1Mpixel D70 with any reasonable magnification.

You will never get the same quality of sharpness with software that you will with good glass. That's because software sharpening is always a guess, albeit, an educated one. Sharp glass is true sharp.

Bottom line: Buy the best glass you can afford.

Cheers,
Eric