Nikon Rumors just published a new blog post stating that they “Still [have] no reliable info/rumors on a new Nikon DX flagship DSLR camera (D400/D500)”.
My first thought was, I’m amazed people are still talking about an up-date to the now practically ancient Nikon D300s, mostly I guess because I feel we already got one some time ago.
I mean, really, what do you not get in a Nikon D7200 that you got from a Nikon D300? Frankly, even the Nikon D7100 and the Nikon D7000 before that gave you a much better camera than the Nikon D300, so why is it people still think they’re missing a Nikon DX flagship?
Take the image sensor for starters. The Nikon D300s had a decent 12 megapixel sensor which was pretty good in its day, but the Nikon D7200 (and the Nikon D7100 before it) has a State of the Art, Top of the APS-C charts, 24 megapixel sensor. It holds the crown in the APS-C sensor kingdom. No reason to be pining for the Nikon D300s here.
And the Nikon D7200 not only has TWICE the resolution of the Nikon D300s, it also has better low light, high ISO abilities with an ISO range of ISO 100-25,600. The D300s had an ISO range of 200-3200 (with a Low-1 of 100 and a High -1 of 6400). I’d ALWAYS choose the D7200 over the D300s for low light work.
So what about the auto focus system? The Nikon D300s had Nikon’s Multi-cam 3500 DX autofocus module with 51 focus points, 15 of which were cross-type, and a -1 EV for low light abilities as well as the ability to fine tune lenses or “dial them in” as some of us like to say. The Nikon D7200 has Nikon’s Advanced Multi-CAM 3500FX II autofocus sensor module with TTL phase detection with 51 focus points including 15 cross-type sensors and f/8 supported by 1 sensor, and retains the ability to fine tune focus. In essence, a newer, updated version of the very good AF module on the Nikon D300s. AND OH YEAH, the D7200 is rated at -3EV for low light AF.
How about video? Well, the D300s came out some years ago, so it only has the ability to shoot AVI files at a 640×424 @24fps. The D7200 on the other hand, can shoot MP4 files at full HD resolution of 1920×1080 @ 60fps. Nobody in there right mind would take the D300s over the D7200 for video.
Maybe it’s the monitor (rear LCD)? Nope. The D300s had a 3 inch monitor with 921,000 dots of resolution. The Nikon D7200 has a 3.2 inch monitor with 1,228,800 dots of resolution, plus an ambient brightness sensor to auto adjust brightness.
Maybe it’s the viewfinder? Nope. Both the Nikon D300s and the Nikon D7200 have 100% coverage with 0.94x magnification.
Perhaps the battery life? No again. The D300s had a 950 shot rated battery while the D7200 sports an 1,110 shot rated battery.
How about speed? Well, I guess you could argue that point as the Nikon D300s could shoot at a top speed of 7fps while the Nikon D7200 tops out at 6fps. Yes, the D300s wins here, but not by much. Let’s face it, 1 fps is not going to amount to a hill of beans for most people.
The only thing left is build quality, and that’s something that folks will argue was better about the D300s, which I’ll concede (with a caveat). Yes, the D300s on paper looks to be better built, with more magnesium alloy in it’s body than the D7200, but in real world use, unless you’re trying to pound nails with your DSLR (and even then, I think they’re both gonna break), this just isn’t an issue. The D7200 is a rugged and robust body that will hold up under any conditions I’d be shooting in, or to put it another way, if the conditions are too severe for the D7200, they were too severe for me long before that, making it a moot point.
Then there’s all the little advances that are so nice on the Nikon D7200 like the built-in Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity. I love being able to use my cell phone as a remote control for the D7200!
And personally I prefer the dual SD card slots on the Nikon D7200 as opposed to the one SD and one Compact Flash on the D300s. I like my cameras to have dual card slots, but I like ’em to use one type of card, plus, I prefer SD cards to Compact Flash anyway.
So that’s why I don’t get the “where’s the Nikon D300s replacement” posts and threads that pop up regularly online. We already have a D300s replacement in the Nikon D7200, and a damn good one at that! Factor in that it costs less than the D300s did, and that it doesn’t cost much more to step into the excellent full frame Nikon D610, and I’m just not seeing where Nikon’s leaving a gap in their line-up.
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