14 Feb Opening The Box – Number Two – The D7500 In Action
The OOTB ( Out of The Box ) rating for the Nikon D7500 is very favourable. The battery charged easily, the camera turned on in one go (!) and the obligatory time, date, and language sections were easy to pass through.
It was easy to find the ” format ” setting in the menu. Don’t laugh…some cameras make this the hardest thing to access. You search through every page of the menu and pass by the settings to change the hot or cold water in the taps and every other blessed option, but you struggle to clean a card. Nearly all makers have a two-part format setting that gives you the opportunity to change your mind, and this is a good safety measure, but it should not be a LOTR quest to actually get there.
The defaults were sensible; sRGB, Auto WB, auto exposure, AF enabled, etc. This is as it should be for the fast-access that a first-timer may need. The picture control was set to a standard that would probably work well with Adobe software. Of course there were multiple options to change this and to get it to the point where it wouldn’t – and I fully expect every dedicated Camera Electronic photographer to go there at least once with every new camera they buy. The trick is not to make it your sole raison d’etre when you switch the camera on.
I wanted studio tabletop work, and knew the Tokina lens would deliver it. The Nikon hot shoe integrated seamlessly with the Elinchrom Skyport transmitter and that meant easy studio flash. ISO could be kept to the 200 to 400 range and that meant no electronic noise in the files.
The D7500 has the self-timer selection on an external ring, which means that you can access it readily to make up for not having a cable release – but of course there is s socket on the LHS for just such a convenience. The shutter button has a firmly comfortable feedback – you need to press it deliberately. There’s a flashing light to tell you to stand clear while the timer works.
I mention this because standard tabletop practice for short subjects is to take several exposures and meld them in Photoshop. You daren’t move the camera between them and refocusing can be a delicate matter. In the case of the RCAF Wet Dog set it is impossible to get into the centre of the hardstand with a tripod, so you need to balance a camera on its bottom. More work on this is needed – I have seen architectural models photographed where an overhead gantry is used to support the camera down in the center of the set. I’ve also seen wargamers use an old tank periscope to see their battlefields from toy-solier level and this is intriguing.
I’m more than satisfied with the short trial of the D7500 – I admit to using the Live View facility for most of the shots and found that the picture it presented of a different white balance than was recorded with the shot was a little disconcerting…I am used to the screen reportage that one gets from a mirror-less sensor – but the end result was delightful. And it must be said that live-action shots that used the reflex mirror system would be a lot easier to time than the EVF system. It would be an easier camera to time at a dance show than a mirror-less one.
The first-time user who exited the Jetstar with this camera and a suitable 18-55 kit lens could certainly expect to get holiday, family, landscape, and sport shots to a very high standard. Really all that would be required for most of this would be opportunity – be there and raise the camera to your eye.
Note for Nikon users: If you cannot find an old Tokina 35mm macro, get a new Nikon 40mm f:2.8 DX macro lens to match this camera body. Does every bit as good albeit with 5 mm more focal length.