Nikon D7500: a D500 in disguise

The new DSLR from Nikon, D7500, offers the same sensor, processor and wide ISO range as the D500 in a more affordable APS-C camera that also does 4K UHD.

Nikon D7500: a D500 in disguise

Nearing its 100th year anniversary, Nikon continues to expand its DSLR line, with the addition of the D7500, a camera with some of the best features of the DX-Format D500.

It’s another DSLR! Yes, Nikon promised a new model for the next Summer, and here it is announced, with a suggested retail price of $1,249.95 for the body only configuration, or  $1,749.95 with a AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens. Designed for enthusiasts, “a distinct type of photographer, who go to great lengths in the relentless pursuit of the perfect capture”, the D7500 aims to be the perfect answer, an advanced-level DX-format DSLR that provides a robust yet lightweight camera with powerful performance and premium features.

The affinity with the Nikon D500 DSLR, which is already a “baby” D5, is evident. The D7500 uses the same 20.9-megapixel image sensor, processor and wide ISO range as the D500, Nikon’s flagship DX-format DSLR. This means that it introduces, at the entry-level segment, features like impressive speed, precision and astounding low-light ability that, claims the company have “never been as attainable” as now… at this level. Considering the very positive reviews of the D500, Nikon may well be right when presenting the D7500 the way it does.

“The Nikon D7500 was engineered to be as versatile as the photographer using it, and excels whether shooting fast-action sports, stunning low-light landscapes, distant wildlife, glamorous portraits or multimedia content,” said Kosuke Kawaura, Director of Marketing and Planning, Nikon Inc. “This is a camera for the photographers who are serious about their passion, infatuated with the next frame and above all else, want speed, small size and an excellent value.”

Video is an important element for many readers at ProVideo Coalition, so let me go through the video specifications for the Nikon D7500. In general terms, and thinking of the need of multimedia content creators, the Nikon D7500 adds in a diverse array of advanced features, including 4K UHD (3840 × 2160/30p) video capture and the ability to produce 4K UHD time-lapse movies in-camera. Video files can be stored as either MOV files or as MP4 files, for greater flexibility and easier playback on a wide range of devices. Like the D500, the D7500 offers 3-axis built-in e-VR image stabilization when shooting 1080p Full HD video, and can be easily focused using the rear touchscreen function.

That’s not all, though. For the advanced videographer, the D7500 offers simultaneous 4K UHD output to card and uncompressed via HDMI, as well as a headphone and microphone jack for pro-level audio recording and monitoring. To allow for smooth exposure adjustments, the camera also supports power aperture for smooth and step-less depth-of-field transitions while users can also keep highlights in-check using visible zebra stripes in live-view mode.

Although the video specifications suggest Nikon wants this model to be competitive within the DSLR segment that continues to attract many users, the Nikon D7500 is first and foremost a tool for photography., and for those photographers that also want to be able to use video, and still maintain their connection to a very specific type of camera, and a brand that is known for its line up of DSLR models.

The D7500 features Nikon’s latest 20.9-megapixel DX-format imaging sensor and EXPEED 5 processing engine, the same high-performance heart of the Nikon D500. Designed to excel in a wide array of shooting conditions, the D7500 eliminates the optical low-pass filter (OLPF) for maximum sharpness and clarity, with the class-leading dynamic range flexibility that is a hallmark of Nikon DSLRs. The compact DX-format form factor also gives photographers extended focal length reach that is an advantage for sports and wildlife photography, especially when coupled with the vast selection of available NIKKOR lenses.

Whether shooting a landscape at dawn or sports under indoor lights, the D7500 affords the latitude of low-light capability to consistently nail the shot, time and time again. Even in the most challenging light, users can capture images with minimal noise, thanks to a native ISO range that spans from 100-51,200, and an expanded ISO range up to an astonishing 1.64 million equivalent. Those same stellar image quality and low noise virtues also apply to those shooting video, whether it’s a 4K UHD production or a astro time-lapse of the night sky.

The D500 is pointed as excellent for sports and action, and the the D7500 is, claims, Nikon, fast enough to keep pace with the quickest athletes or animals; capable of shooting at up to 8 frames-per-second (fps) with full AF/AE, with an expanded buffer of up to 50 RAW/NEF (14-bit lossless compressed) or 100 JPEG images.

While Nikon’s proven 51-point AF system covers a large portion of the frame, a A Group-Area AF function has been added, which is a preferred focus mode for those shooting fast action. Navigation through the menus can be controlled using the touchscreen function. The slim, tilting 3.2” 922K-dot touchscreen LCD can be used to easily control, compose and play back, even while mounted to a tripod.

Like the Nikon D5 and D500, the 180K RGB Metering system is used with the Advanced Scene Recognition System to help ensure balanced exposures and color rendition in nearly any shooting situation. Also like the D500 and D5, the Auto AF Fine Tune feature when in Live View allows users to automatically calibrate autofocus with specific lenses if needed.

The lightweight DX form factor of the D7500 allows for an agile, comfortable body with deep grip and comprehensive weather sealing. The monocoque body is durable and approximately 5% lighter than the D7200 and 16% lighter than the D500.

Nikon D7500: a D500 in disguise

The camera’s pop-up flash can act as a Commander for remote Speedlights, while the camera is also optimized to function with line-of-sight using SB-500, SB-700 and SB-5000. It can even support the radio frequency control system of the SB-5000 when using the optional WR-R10 accessory.

New Auto Picture Control function analyzes the picture scene and automatically generates a tone curve within the camera. Through the Retouch menu, users can access an in-camera Batch Process RAW Converter that can handle multiple images to optimize workflow.

Images can automatically be downloaded to a compatible smartphone, and the camera can also be triggered remotely using Built-in Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.

In terms of battery, which is an essential aspect photographers consider, the Nikon D7500 is able to shoot all day and well into the night with up to approximately 950 shots per charge (CIPA standard).

Visit Nikon page dedicated to the new camera, for more information on the D7500 model.


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Jose Antunes

I am a writer and photographer living on the West Coast of Portugal, a place I tend to call the Atlantic Realm. An area of rugged cliffs and sandy beaches overlooking the sea, a coastal area sitting between the Atlantic Ocean waves and hills and forests with some of the most magical palaces, castles and prehistorical sites for you to visit and photograph. Little hamlets, vast fields, inviting you to a contemplative state of mind. That’s where I live, and the landscape surely makes you what you are.

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