Nikon D7000 review roundup

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The Nikon D7000 was the star of the show at the PhotoKina tradeshow back in September, and in fact only Nikon’s second DSLR to be released this year. Is this high end shooter worth your moolah? The first reviews have been trickling in, so we’ve grouped them all up and broken them down for you. Read on and find out in our Nikon D7000 review roundup.

The Nikon D7000 certainly looks promising on paper. For £1100 (body only), you get a brand new 16.2 megapixel CMOS with ISO100-6400, plus expansion up to ISO 25600, SDXC memory card support and an impressive 39 point autofocus system. Plus full 1080p HD video at 24 frames per second, with autofocus. How does it translate in real world use? Let’s find out.

Check out the list to the right

Build

The Nikon D7000 sits somewhere between the older Nikon D90 and the tres high end Nikon D300s in price, so it’s no surprise to find it’s a blend of the two. Much was made of its durability, with PhotoRadar saying the Nikon D7000’s “construction is closer to the Nikon D300s’s as both cameras have a magnesium alloy body shell rather than the polycarbonate version of the D90.”

Over on ePhotozine meanwhile, the reviewer thought it was a great compromise. “In terms of build quality and design, Nikon’s D7000 is kind of a halfway house compromise between the ruggedness of their professional models and the lightweight compact designs of their high-end consumer SLRs such as the D90…Overall, I feel this design strikes a good compromise between durability and lighter weight.”

Check out our Best Nikon camera Top 5 now

PhotographyBlog made a neat point meanwhile about the bundled 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens, saying the built in vibration reduction “is a good starting point if you don’t already have any Nikon lenses”, especially since Nikon cameras lack boy image stabilisation.

All in all, reviewers found the Nikon D7000 to be a durable, manageable shooter for the price – the only issue was raised by PhotographyBlog, which bemoaned the “lack of an articulating screen”.

Image quality

Once again, for where the Nikon D7000 sits in the market, few came away disappointed with the stills they shot. ePhotozine said that the “new 16.2 megapixel CMOS sensor is certainly more than capable of producing sharp and detailed images, with excellent clarity straight from the camera”, and also praised the sensitivity. “Even though Nikon have managed to squeeze another 4 million pixels into their DX format CMOS sensor, the performance at high ISOs doesn’t appear to have suffered at all. Images taken between ISO100 and ISO800 show no significant signs of noise and fine details are still rendered clearly.” You can see how little blowout there is on the bright colours in the sample photo below – click through for the full gallery.

PhotographyBlog meanwhile was taken with the Nikon D7000′s lowlight performance. “There’s virtually no noise from the base sensitivity of ISO 100 all the way up to 3200, with the higher settings of 6400, 12,800 and even to a lesser extent 25,600 all perfectly usable for smaller prints – very impressive for a 1.5x sensor.” Check out the impressive contrast in one of the site’s sample pics, and click for the full gallery.

Video

The Nikon D7000 shoots full 1080p HD video, a first for a Nikon DSLR, but the autofocusing turned out to be more of a bane than a blessing – reviewers found that the motor for autofocusing while filming made a distracting noise on the soundtrack without an external mic. There’s an audible whine as the camera refocuses and it’s still too slow to focus on any fast-moving subject, so much so that we suspect most serious users will use manual focusing instead,” said PhotographyBlog.

Still, there was no faulting the Nikon D7000′s recoding quality. ePhotozine said that “Footage recorded by the camera looks clean, crisp and free from artefacts and jerkiness.” See for yourself in a 1080p sample clip taken below.

Verdict

Reviewers were in no doubt that the Nikon D7000 is aimed at pretty serious snappers. “It is aimed squarely at those who may look towards the company’s professional offerings, and maybe don’t need the extra ruggedness, but do require a camera they can grow with whatever their level of photography,” said ePhotozine.

And PhotographyBlog thought that its imaging skills combined with sturdy design proved a winner next to the comparable Canon Eos 60D, giving it a Highly Recommended award. “It does offer slightly cleaner images at higher ISO speeds, more refined AF mode, slightly quicker burst shooting and a more durable magnesium body.”

But, PhotoRadar was less impressed in the end, giving it just 3/5, and criticising the bundled kit lens, complaining that “it hampers the camera’s AF system in less than ideal lighting conditions. With a professional-level lens mounted the D7000 proves itself to have an excellent AF system capable of accurate results in very difficult situations.”

So there you have it – if you’ve got good glass to hand already, the Nikon D7000 produces cracking results. Whether it’s worth the cost when a Nikon D300s can be had for the same price depends on how badly you want HD video and durability.

Oh, and one more thing…

While checking out all the in depth Nikon D7000 reviews on the web, we stumbled across this gem of a comparison with the Canon Eos 7D. It’s impressively thorough, but it all gets very….strange…from about 00:50, and is well worth a watch if your boss isn’t looking. It’s camera soft porn meets Top Gear.

  • http://www.facebook.com/nickthomas125 Nick Thomas

    I've got this camera and it's just amazing! The ISO at 6400 is brilliant and AF is so fast

  • Charles R

    Is that a joke 11,000 pounds?! It is almost twice the retail price as in USA, Australia, etc.
    Besides feature to feature the D7000 is way ahead of the D300S while being cheaper, why would you bother to buy technology that is 2 years older? Only the number of autofocus point and fps are slightly higher with the D300S (although with the D300S you need the battery pack to get more fps). The D300S scores lower in every compartment and it does not even allow you to use the Nikon wireless remote control unlike the D7000. This review seems biased to me. And the Canon 60D is way more expensive with mediocre autofocus and recognition.

    • bensillis

      ? £1,100! Much less!

  • Charles R

    I meant metering system, not autofocus. The metering system on the Canon is rubbish. (like any Canon)

    • Xtassy2

      I agree with Charles R 1 more thing if you buy D300S wait for few months and it will be an old camera because there might be D300X coming out in the market, and check the review carefully D300S only have 2 advantages from D7000 that is 51 Focus points and 8pfs continues burst thats not much! over all D7000 has more advantages compare to the D300s see the full specs of both camera.

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