Nikon D7000 Review
When it was announced in September the D7000 took a lot of people by surprise. Although a D90 successor had been on the horizon for some time, what wasn’t expected was how close in specification terms the new camera would turn out to be to the D300S. In some respects, in fact, the D7000 actually outguns its (supposedly) semi-pro cousin, and offers a compelling upgrade option to both D90 and D300S owners, whilst nominally sitting between the two in Nikon’s current lineup.
Although ergonomically, the D7000 is a very close match for the D90, its overall ‘feel’ is considerably more serious, thanks to a magnesium alloy body shell and slightly thicker rubber coating on the hand grip and rear of the camera. At 16.2Mp the D7000 offers the second highest resolution of any Nikon DSLR, behind only the 24Mp D3X. All of these pixels are packed onto a newly developed CMOS sensor, which is almost certainly the same or very similar to that in the Sony Alpha SLT-A55. As well as extra resolution, the new sensor also offers a higher ‘standard’ ISO span of 100-6400, expandable up to the equivalent of ISO 25,600.
The D7000’s AF and metering systems are also new, and represent a significant upgrade to those used in the D90. The new camera boasts a 39-point AF array with 9 cross-type AF points and works in collaboration with a new 2016-pixel RGB metering sensor to allow 3D AF tracking (essentially tracking by subject color, explained here). Other changes include the same combined live view/movie switch control as the 3100, and a significantly upgraded movie specification, up to ‘full HD’ – 1920×1080 resolution at 24fps. Unlike the D90, the D7000 can also maintain AF during live view and movie shooting, thanks to its AF-F (‘full time’) AF mode.
D90 owners have been waiting for a replacement camera for a while, and although the D90 isn’t set for retirement quite yet, the D7000 certainly represents a compelling upgrade. It took longer than we’d hoped for a production D7000 to be supplied to us, but now that we’ve had one for a a few weeks we’ve been able to produce an in-depth review. Read on to find out what we think of Nikon’s newest DSLR.
Nikon D7000 Key Features
- 16.2MP CMOS sensor
- 1080p HD video recording with mic jack for external microphone
- ISO 100-6400 (plus H1 and H2 equivalent to ISO 12,800/25,600)
- 39-point AF system with 3D tracking
- New 2016 pixel metering sensor
- Scene Recognition System (see 2016 pixel sensor, above) aids WB/metering + focus accuracy
- Twin SD card slots
- 3.0 inch 921k dot LCD screen
- New Live View/movie shooting switch
- Full-time AF in Live View/movie modes
- Up to 6fps continuous shooting
- Lockable drive mode dial
- Built-in intervalometer
- Electronic virtual horizon
- Shutter tested to 150K actuations