Upgrade from D7000 to D750?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by jon_reisegg, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. I'm considering an upgrade from D7000 to D750 for primarily two reasons; autofocus in low light and noiseless high ISO performance. I'm mostly working with wildlife, birds, insects and flowers. The body upgrade is a significant cost for me, but also the lenses give me a concern. My Micro Nikkor 85mm 3.5G will for sure need an upgrade, but my Nikon 300mm 4D w/TC14II and Nikon 70-300 4.5-5.6G can be kept. However, keeping the two telephotos, will I loose the extra reach I gained by the 1.5 crop D7000? Of course I will, but as the D750 has more pixels, can I crop D750 pictures during post processing to the "D7000 reach" and get equal or better resolution/sharpness?
    In other words, will I gain anything in the telephoto area from the higher pixel number in FX without investing in bigger lenses?
     
  2. Your concerns, about losing the extra reach provided by DX, needing an upgrade for your 85mm, the cost of the D750 body, together with your desire for more pixels (again for reach) make a strong case for upgrading to . . . a D7100. As a 24MP DX camera, with excellent autofocus in low light which costs half as much as the D750, it might make more sense for your needs.
    Be aware that the D7100 is due for an update, so that, if you decide to stay with DX, it might be worthwhile to wait a little.
     
  3. What do you have in the wider lens department?

    What kinds of things do you shoot?
     
  4. lwg

    lwg

    I know the D800 has about the same number of pixels in crop mode as the D7000, so you loose some with the D750
    (about 1/3). You could look at the 1.7 teleconverter to get some of that back.
     
  5. For wildlife, the D7100 is a no-brainer. Nikon will be upgrading that one probably sooner rather than later. No way I'd be happy with FX for wildlife, especially smaller sized critters. With D7100 you gain the 24mp AND you don't have to crop nearly as much. The pixels are packed more densely on the D7100, translating into more feather detail etc. When you start routinely adding teleconverters you will lose some sharpness. Again, D7100 = no-brainer.
    Kent in SD
     
  6. noiseless high ISO performance​
    No. Better, yes, noiseless - no. The D7000 isn't a poor performer by any standard at high ISOs, so do not expect miracles there, because it won't be a night and day difference. Plus, especially for macro: to get the same depth of field you often need to stop aperture down an additional stop, which removes the ~1 stop advantage you had in high ISO performance.
    You could look at the 1.7 teleconverter to get some of that back.​
    True, but I happen to have the AF-S 300 f/4 with the TC17EII, and that's not a very impressive combination, in my experience. On the D750, it should AF (though at f/6.7 it'll be slower), but the optical performance at longer distances takes a pretty significant hit. The lens works a lot better with the TC14.
    DX mode on the D750 is abour 10 MP. Which can be enough for a lot of uses, but obviously does not match your D7000. If you really need the AF improvement, I'd do as Hector suggested - look at the D7100.
     
  7. You could look at the 1.7 teleconverter to get some of that back
    Or, in addition to the D750, add a Tamron ( or thenew sigma verion...) zoom 150-600mm to retain reach without messing around with a TC ... ?
    Best of both options, the higher resolution sensor, the better AF at low light, and the reach .
    On older generation AF and Sensor i would not think of a combination like this, but the 150-600mm zooms seem quite good, and the sensores nowadays pergorm quite well at higher ISO so it feels to me that the D&50 combined with a zoom like that could perform reasonably impressive...
     
  8. You can get some improvement in high ISO image quality, more pixels on your subject as well as better autofocus if you get the D7100. The drawback is that it has a small buffer. Given your subject matter I don't think you will benefit from an FX camera without either getting (a) longer lens(es) or get closer to your subject to fill the frame.
    High quality lenses longer than your 300/4 tend to be very expensive. There is the Nikon AF-S 80-400/4.5-5.6 and Tamron 150-600/5-6.3 but those have smaller maximum apertures than your 300mm which reduce (or may even cancel) the high ISO and AF advantages that an FX camera would have. In general you get substantial benefits from FX only if you can fill the frame with your subject with close to the intended composition in the camera (there are some exceptions such as a D4s will let you shoot at 11fps). If you end up having to crop a lot, or use a TC, a DX camera would have likely resulted in a better outcome, especially if you shoot wide open. There can be benefits from using a TC if you stop down 1-3 stops and if the lens + TC combination is very good (e.g. the fast supertele primes $5k+), but I would not make lens or camera purchases that lead you to use a TC most of the time to get your intended composition.
     
  9. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I'm mostly working with wildlife, birds, insects and flowers.​
    For those subjects, I would stick with DX. In particular, your long telephoto lenses are 300mm + TC. FX will only make them appear shorter. If you had a 600mm or 800mm lens, FX may make more sense.
     
  10. "In general you get substantial benefits from FX only if you can fill the frame with your subject with close to the intended composition in the camera"
    This statement by Ilkka is very important to understand regarding high ISO noise "superiority" of full frame. For example, I have a D7000 and a D800. The pixel size and performance between the two cameras are essentially identical. The noise advantage comes from being able to have the subject fill a larger area on the sensor thereby "collecting more light" given the same aperture. The gain in apparent noise comes when I then down-sample the larger file to make my final image.
    If the image size is limited by your lens, then there is no advantage. As an example, a couple weeks ago I was taking pictures of the "blood moon" and my max focal length is 400mm so the image of the moon would be the same size on either camera's sensor. So in this case I would get the identical final image out of either camera. There was no advantage in using the D800. You are probably faced with the same situation often in your bird photography.
     
  11. "I'm mostly working with wildlife, birds, insects and flowers." - In that case you need to stick with the DX format (or smaller!). Moving to FX will gain you nothing in those areas where a high magnification is required.
    If you were doing portraits, group shots, landscape, product shots or needing shallow DoF for some reason, then maybe full-frame would be an advantage. For wildlife - No, you definitely don't need full frame.
    The recommendation to go for a D7100 or its successor is sound advice.
     
  12. I'm surprised no one mentioned that the D7100 has a 1.3 crop mode which will bring everything even closer. Ends up being almost doubled. And it makes the focusing points fill the frame that way as well. And it increases the burst rate.
     
  13. This is a marvelous forum, always lots a good advices from highly skilled colleges. Thanks a lot, seems like I can save my money for something better than FX.
     
  14. interesting responses, and ones that essentially dovetail with Thom Hogan's latest rants about FX not being the be-all and end-all, despite nikon solidifying the line with the 750 and 810 and emphasizing the format in its marketing. now, if you were talking the 810, the DX crop mode would be closer to the d7000's base resolution, but crop mode on the 750 only gives you 9mp. there are specific reasons to get either of those cameras, but if you need the reach essentially DX is better when you factor in the lens cost. in the OP's case, the 7100 would offer better AF and more resolution than the 7000, but obviously not the same ISO performance as the 750. it may be worth it to wait and see if the 7200 has the same low-light focusing abilities as the 750/810, my understanding is this becomes possible with the Expeed 4 chips, so it may trickle down to the next-gen DX flagship.
     
  15. "Thom Hogan's latest rants about FX not being the be-all and end-all..." - Well Thom Hogan isn't the be-all and end-all either.
    I'm still finding it amazing that photographers in general haven't yet got beyond the idea of the medium being the limiting factor to image quality; as it clearly was (and is) with film.
    Technology seems to be reaching the point where digital sensors are essentially 'grainless', and we can simply choose a format size for reasons other than pure resolution. For example: The practicality of compatibility with older lenses or better control over depth-of-field, rather than the old "bigger is better" mentality.
    However, I can't help feeling that there's a best compromise in format size as far as the trade off in focal length/depth-of-field/diffraction/ease of optical manufacture goes. And I can't help coming back to the idea that something around the old 35mm frame size is about ideal. Personally I'd do away with Barnack's overlong 3:2 ratio and go for 4:3, but that's just my opinion. I doubt that anyone's going to make my own ideal format of 27 x 36mm with around 40 Mpix, but one can hope. The diagonal is only 45mm, leaving plenty of existing lenses able to easily cover it.
     
  16. One final question, which I cannot find a clear answer to in all the good responses above. What will give me the best result if some sort of cropping is required, run the FX camera in crop mode, or do the corresponding cropping in post processing?
     
  17. If you use an FX camera in one of the crop modes (1.2x, 1.5x, 4:5) it will produce a similar result as if you made that exact crop in post-processing. Using the crop mode in camera will in some cameras have the advantage of a bit higher fps and smaller files. E.g. D810 in FX mode does 5fps at 36MP, in 1.2X crop mode 6fps at 25MP, and in DX mode 7fps with 15MP, however the 7fps requires the right batteries to be installed in the battery grip (if I recall correctly); the 5 and 6fps are achieved with the standard battery. I have used the 1.2X crop a bit for figure skating but have mixed feelings about it. The smaller file size, more shots in the buffer and faster speed can be useful. However, there is only a thin black line that marks the cropped area of the image in the viewfinder and in fast paced situations it is not always easy to see where the line goes relative to the subject, so sometimes parts of the subject can be cropped off accidentally. I am sure being aware of the cropped frame lines gets easier with some practice, however. It is safer to shoot full frame however, as you then have more safety margin around the subject in action situations.
     
  18. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    What will give me the best result if some sort of cropping is required, run the FX camera in crop mode, or do the corresponding cropping in post processing?​
    My rule of thumb is that always capture and retain as much information as your camera allows. You will never be able to recover the information your throw away at the time you press the shutter release (and the fraction of a second immediately after that).
    That is why I strongly advocate shooting RAW. If you have the option to shoot 14-bit RAW instead of 12 bit, shoot 14 bit. I would be reluctant to shoot JPEG only and throw away lots of information at the time of capture. Perhaps JPEG is totally good enough for, say, 95% of your images; in that case I would shoot RAW + JPEG so that you have the JPEG to save time, but in a few cases when you need to recover more information, you have the RAW images around. In these days memory cards and disk space are cheap. You can always delete whatever you don't need later on.
    By the same token, always capture the entire FX frame your FX camera allows and crop afterwards so that you have more options to crop differently. When you crop at the time of capture, you eliminate some (and perhaps a lot of) your options later on. In particular, if you use the crop mode, depending on your set up, the viewfinder frequently still shows the entire frame with a rectangle inside the viewfinder showing the actual capture area. I find that very confusing and I have a tendency to compose with the entire frame shown in the viewfinder, especially when I am in a hurry. I have had the head of a bird cut off because I mistakenly thought it was inside the frame while it was actually outside of the cropped area.
    But there are always exceptions to any rule. If a crop capture gives you a higher frame rate, as Ilkka mentioned, that can be an advantage in some occasions. If you are about to run out of memory card space and don't have a spare round (you should never get yourself into such a situation), using the crop mode may help conserve memory card space ....
    Keep as much info as you can and give yourself more options later on. I think you are mostly better off that way.
     
  19. For me it also depends on how I'm going to use an image.
    If the image is going to be printed, even only maybe, I'm way more careful about things than I am if the image is only going to be viewed on-screen or on the web.
     
  20. I have to agree with the other recommendations of the D7100. It has similar low light autofocus to the D750. If you plan on using crop mode on the D750, you're better off to just buy a D7100 because it's higher quality than the D750 when cropped down to give the same "reach". I'm a sports photographer and the folks here on photo.net talked me out of going full frame not to long ago and I'm SO glad I didn't make the switch. For wildlife photography, I would say a DX D7100 is the way to go. It's a lot cheaper, will yield better image quality than a D750 in crop mode, and it's lighter which is a huge plus for hiking and long walks.
     
  21. ....that is what is so wonderful with this forum. They talk us away from the upgrade sickness and bring us down to the earth again after our dreams, which will follow almost every new announcement coming.
     

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