Spring is in full swing in northern California. So I took the 24-megapixel Nikon D7100 out for a spin.
Nikon D7100 comments
Terrific sensor color and resolution (best yet in DX sensor), but the D7100 body has usability flaws that make it a hassle for the way I work: totally unnecessary booby-traps for making mistakes. How Nikon manages to screw up something with every new DSLR is baffling.
I took the Nikon D7100 out for a spin, expecting to benefit from a Live View feature that does not suffer from the mangled subsampled Live View seen with the D800E. But the D7100 proved more troublesome to focus than the D800E: that weird half-second blur delay along with a contrast issue made focusing more difficult than I had anticipated (based on studio conditions). In spite of the D800E limitations, I quickly concluded that I preferred the D800E over the D7100 Live View. And that D7100 screen sure is shiny.
Next I noted a frustrating bug with the D7100: set the camera to (for example) f/1.4 or f/2, enter Live View mode with a bright scene, and the camera simply ignores the aperture and closes down to f/4 or so. Completely defeating the focusing accuracy of using the wider aperture. If you happen to notice—which at first I did not. No warning is given. Adding to this, the camera won’t change apertures once in Live View mode. So one has to exit Live View, put a hand over the lens to fool the brightness algorithm, then enter Live View mode at f/1.4 or f/2, then remove the hand. Uggg.
Since one can’t always predict when the D7100 will engage in this behavior, it requires checking for it every time Live View is used. Oh, and then there is the lack of an AF-ON button, which drove me crazy. More specifically, one can use custom setting f4 Assign AE-L/AF-L button to assign AF-ON, but when one does that it disables autofocus via the shutter release. I can find no AF Activation= Shutter/AF-ON option in the D7100 as is found in the D800. Yet one more case of capricious changes to make using a mid-range body different from a semi-pro body.
I use Live View all the time, so this camera behavior turns me off to the D7100. But I suppose if one shoots the D7100 with autofocus and so on and doesn’t use Live View, then who cares as it won’t come into play.