A 'Fixed' D600 but a Failed Nikon Brand
I purchased the Nikon D600 when it first came out and THANKFULLY returned it when the dust/oil began to pop up on the sensor. I feel horrible for anyone that kept the D600 and now has a faulty camera out of warranty that has (essentially) been decommissioned from Nikon as a faulty product they don't want to fix. Thus the D610: a Nikon D600 with no dust and oil issues.
Great, responsive and versatile tool
That the D610 is lighter than any other Nikon FX digital SLR camera is a real boon to anyone planning to use it for extended periods of time, though be prepared that it's still quite a handful and noticeably heavier than the cheapest auto focus SLRs of the film era (then again, it's a much higher specified model than any of those). The Nikon D610's mirror is surprisingly quiet for a full-frame SLR camera and in normal use it produces only minimal viewfinder blackout.
High build quality, Excellent quality images
While the Nikon D610 is an excellent camera that's capable of recording plenty of detail in images with rich tones, good exposure and pleasant colours it is considerably more expensive the Canon 6D which can be bought for around $1899/£1475.
Those photographers who aren't tied to Nikon by a stash of lenses may feel tempted to invest in the Canon camera instead.
Excellent image quality, Excellent noise performance
The Nikon D610, like the D600 before, is a full-frame 24.3 megapixel camera with excellent image quality and performance. It offers excellent noise performance, excellent image quality with good detail even as the ISO setting increases, and puts it all into a rugged weather sealed body with a great 3.2inch screen. The camera offers advanced Full HD video recording with both microphone and headphone sockets, and video benefits from the full frame sensor in low-light situations.
Spectacular image quality
The Nikon D600 was one of the worst-kept secrets in the industry this year, and the enthusiast and prosumer crowd has been foaming at the mouth to see what an affordable full-frame camera from Nikon would look like. The Nikon D600 does not disappoint, offering nearly every bit of control that the impressive D800 offers, with comparable features.
Excellent image quality, Full feature set, Dual SD card slots
The Nikon D600's release (along with that of the Canon 6D) has made full-frame shooting available to a broader market than ever before. This is particularly important for Nikon users since photographers with DX cameras don't have to buy new lenses when stepping up to the D600.
Additionally, the D600 offers a 24 megapixel sensor, a full complement of features that almost rival those of the more expensive D800 and performance that will meet the needs of most photographers.
Great, responsive and versatile tool
If you think you can live with that and a few other limitations / omissions versus the D800; the smaller, lighter and cheaper Nikon D600 will serve you just as well as the more expensive model - and even give you faster frame rates and more manageable raw file sizes as an added bonus.
Built-in AF motor for non AF-S lenses
From Nikon's point of view, the D600 has a tough role to fulfill. Primarily, it's an 'entry level' full frame DSLR designed to appeal to enthusiast photographers looking for the kind of build, image quality and features provided by pro DSLRs at a more affordable price. It's also got to function as a pro model backup, able to tick the same boxes as high end models like the D800 and D4, without being so good it begins to look like an attractively priced replacement rather than a supplement.
Outstanding low and high ISO performance in both JPEG and Raw files
There's a lot to like in the Nikon D600. In fact, really, there are very few areas in which it can be legitimately criticized given its market position and price point. Being a mid-range DSLR (albeit towards the top end) it lacks the customization options of the D800 (and D300S) and borrows its operational ergonomics primarily from the D7000.
Compact and light, Outstanding sensor performance
The superb sensor, extensive yet accessible features and compactness make the Nikon D600 an exceptionally user-friendly full-frame.
It's a pity the Nikon D600's larger sensor commands such a price premium over the Nikon D7000, but assuming it sees the kind of price reductions that the D800 has undergone, we're in for a treat.
But Nikon won't have this sector to itself for long. Canon's new full-frame EOS 6D will undercut the Nikon D600 on size, weight and price. Let battle commence.
Compact design may well appeal to many
On paper the D600 looks to be an attractive proposition and Nikon's attempt to once again bring an affordable full-frame DSLR to the enthusiast market is certainly to be applauded. There are, however, two things that may hold it back. The first of these is its closeness in price to the higher-spec and more robust D800, although given time we wouldn't be surprised to see the gap in price widen between the two models.
Excellent image quality, Excellent noise performance
The Nikon D600 is a full-frame 24.3 megapixel camera with excellent image quality and performance. It offers excellent noise performance, excellent image quality with good detail even as the ISO setting increases, and puts it all into a rugged weather sealed body with a great 3.2inch screen. The camera offers advanced Full HD video recording with both microphone and headphone sockets, and videos benefit from the full frame sensor in low-light situations.
Excellent image quality, small and light for a full-frame camera
The D600 opens the full-frame door to many that would never otherwise be able to afford such a DSLR. It's not exactly cheap, but it's great value for money when considering both the build and image quality. The feature set is much like a D800 mashed up with a D7000 - an excellent blend of pro and consumer features therefore kit out this full-framer and it definitely gets our seal of approval.
Generally impressive image quality
For those with prior lens family affiliation, your decision is already made. Almost all the praise we have for the Nikon D600 also applies to the 6D. We think the autofocus system does lag behind - only by a little - but enough to make this camera a slightly inferior choice for action photography. Otherwise, the Canon EOS 6D is tied for the best entry point for new full-frame photographers, and yes, represents a fantastic value, even at $2100.
Outstanding pictures in both good and bad light
Compared to the 5D Mark III's official price of £2999 / $3499, the 6D is something of a bargain at £1799 / $2099, especially as it delivers very similar image quality to its big brother. The only fly in the ointment in terms of price is the Nikon D600, which due to being released earlier now typically undercuts the 6D by a couple of hundred pounds / dollars. Still, the EOS 6D should also drop in price once the novelty has worn off.
Tough, moisture and dust resistant body, Built-in Wi-Fi and GPS
The Canon EOS 6D is an extremely capable and well-designed full-frame digital SLR that provides a clear upgrade choice for anyone looking to graduate from an APS-C model to a full-frame DSLR. It combines excellent image quality with superb high ISO noise performance, has an AF system that works in very low light levels and adds built-in GPS and Wi-Fi features in a tough, moisture and dust resistant body that's lighter and more compact than other full-frame bodies.
Excellent detail in raw file output across ISO range
The EOS 6D ticks off many of the things an APS-C DSLR owner could want in a full frame upgrade: great image quality, excellent handling, light weight and a sub-$2100 price tag. The challenge for Canon, of course is that the 6D does not exist in a vacuum.
Enthusiast-centric controls, Remote control via Wi-Fi
All things considered, the Canon EOS 6D is an excellent choice for the enthusiast and club photographer looking for a full-frame DSLR. These users will find that they have just about everything they need, and a bit more besides.
It may take them a while to get to grips with the subtleties of the camera's AF system, and they will have to remember some of the basics of metering when using the iFCL evaluative system in high contrast conditions, but they will appreciate the end results.
Excellent image quality, Excellent high ISO performance
The Canon EOS 6D feels like it's an improvement over the Canon EOS 5D Mark II, and gives most of what you get with the 5D Mark III, but with the addition of GPS and Wi-Fi, as well as the excellent 20.2 megapixel sensor for improved noise performance, but with a fraction of the price of the 5D Mark III, making this an excellent camera for those wanting a full-frame Digital SLR.
Full-frame image quality, EOS Utility wireless shooting via computer has potential
The EOS 6D delivers the image quality, but is paired with a focus system that's a game of two halves: it's great in low-light, but lacks the extended number of AF points that we'd like to see. A partially restricted viewfinder is also a downside, while the likes of Wi-Fi and GPS, "nice" though they are, would have been better off replaced by a more detailed core spec. Some good points and some lessons to be taken from Canon's budget full-framer.
Image quality, Full frame sensor, Built in wifi
It isn't pocket money, but the EOS 6D nonetheless puts full-frame features within reach of the more ambitious enthusiast photographer. I'd have happily swapped the GPS and Wifi for more autofocus points, but it's nonetheless a great body that captures great colours and very detailed shots.
Compact for a full-frame SLR
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III looks a lot like its predecessor on the outside, but offers plenty of improvements under the hood. It's a solid option for advanced shooters with an investment in Canon glass, but doesn't match the rapid-fire shooting capabilities of the EOS-1D X or Nikon D4.
Has many of the 1D X's best video features
All in all, the 5D Mark III may not turn the photography world on its ear the way the Mark II did, but it's a worthy update that adds many of the features Mark II users have been asking for. What's more, it represents a real and valid alternative to the Canon 1D X at a little more than half the cost. With performance upgrades also in tow, we're excited to see just how far Canon has pushed the 5D series in its third iteration.
Excellent build quality
On paper, the Canon 5D Mark III may not seem like a huge step up from the 5D Mark II especially given all the rumors (and long-time anticipation) surrounding its release. In some ways, the Mark III on the surface doesn't dazzle with additional bells and whistles or even any huge leap forward in technology.
61-point auto-focus system
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III builds on the success of its popular predecessor with a series of improvements that add up to a much better all-round camera for stills and video alike. The 61-point auto-focus system in particular is very welcome, along with the excellent performance at higher ISOs, faster continuous shooting and a much more refined movie making interface. Only a sharp increase in price prevents us from recommending this new model quite as enthusiastically as we did the 5D Mark II.
Good ergonomics, build quality and twin card slots
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III is a very satisfying all-round DSLR. It feels tough, handles quickly and delivers great-looking photos and video. Canon has pretty much addressed all the complaints of the Mark II and also included all the nice extras commonly offered by Nikon, like 100% viewfinder coverage, twin card slots, deep bracketing and an AF system packed with points.
Good color and tonality across the ISO range
Since the launch of the original EOS 5D in 2005 Canon's 5D series has become extremely popular with enthusiast photographers and for many has been the gateway to the world of 'full-frame' photography. Unsurprisingly, more than 3 years after the launch of the EOS 5D Mark II, the latest model in the line, the Canon EOS 5D Mark III, was one of the most eagerly awaited cameras that we can remember.
Excellent HDR mode
While the key specification changes since the 5D Mark II largely just bring the Canon EOS 5D Mark III into line with Canon's existing DSLRs, we're impressed with the results from the new camera. Raw and JPEG images have plenty of detail, noise is well controlled at the higher native sensitivity settings and colour and exposure are generally very good.
Vastly improved AF module
The Canon 5D Mark III is a professional-grade full-frame DSLR that builds on the strengths of previous models in the range to deliver an impressive looking camera that is sure to appeal to video enthusiasts as much as stills shooters. With the recent arrival of the Nikon D800, Canon needed a bit of a showstopper model with the 5D Mark III, the company appears to have delivered one.
Excellent noise performance
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III is an excellent camera, capable of taking stunning photos in a wide variety of situations and has a wealth of lenses available to go with it. The 5D Mark III may not be as ground-breaking as the 5D Mark II, but this is simply because the Mark II was so good, and where the Mark III has been improved is noticeable.
Excellent image quality, Great high ISO performance
We've come to expect follow-on cameras to generally out-do the camera they're replacing features-wise, and the 60D follows suit in most cases compared to the 50D. Sensor resolution is up and an HD video capability exists where none did before. The 3.0-inch LCD monitor is movable and viewfinder coverage is improved, albeit only 1% and only to 96% overall.
Compositional advantage of a tilt and swivel LCD
Canon's robust enthusiast targeted EOS 60D is a more consumer-friendly version of the 50D it replaces. It slots into the current range between the Canon EOS 550D, of interest to those stepping up from a compact, and the semi-professional Canon EOS 7D.
Shoot both still pictures and HD video clips
A DSLR camera for photo enthusiasts who also want to be able to record Full HD video clips.Replacing the popular EOS 50D, Canon's new EOS 60D sits between the EOS 550D and EOS 7D and appears to have the same sensor as its 'siblings'. The company is clearly aiming this model at photo enthusiasts, adding some new features that will attract those upgrading from an entry-level DSLR or Advanced digicam, the most visible being a vari-angle LCD monitor.
Excellent balance, great choice of lenses
The EOS 60D costs a pretty penny, but you'll be rewarded with fine handling, Canon's superb selection of lenses, and excellent video capabilities. We wish the user interface was a little less awkward and some of the key features present in the older 50D had been retained, but you'll get great photos and videos with the EOS 60D.
It features good imaging specs, improved battery life and HD video
This camera performs well with its DIGIC 4 technology, and the Canon EOS 60D professional DSLR camera is a solid choice for anyone looking to take high-quality pictures. We are disappointed that the speed has dropped to 5.3 images per second, while the 50D shoots 6.3 images per second.
Excellent image quality - very sharp results
The Leica X1 was quite unique when first announced, as one of very few cameras available with a large APS-C sized sensor. This partly justified the high price of the Leica X1, however since then, there has been a number of new cameras, with large sensors, such as the Fujifilm X100 with optical/electronic hybrid viewfinder, the Sigma DP1/DP2 Merrill with 46mp Foveon sensor, as well as a number of mirrorless cameras (with practicallty all of them cheaper than the Leica X2).
Size sensor is large and this makes for sharp, detailed images
We love the Leica X2, but it's a far cry from a mainstream camera and, therefore, won't be suited to many of our readers. However, it's this distinctiveness that makes it a desirable camera.
Not only does the X2 look delectable - that understated "for those in the know" kind of good - but its images are equally great too.
Excellent color rendition
Overall, we think that the Leica X2 is a niche camera that not everyone can appreciate. While its 35mm fixed focal length and lack of a video function may be seen as limitations, the X2's target audience of serious enthusiasts will likely appreciate the camera's build and lens quality, dedicated controls and good low-light performance. Of course, all that comes at a premium, as well.
Beautiful looks and build, Great photo quality
The Leica X2 is a bit of curio, to be honest. When compared to the likes of the Sony NEX-7, Fujifilm X10 or Panasonic GF5, it comes across as slow, light on features, inflexible and expensive. And yes, it's all those things. But it's also a Leica, with the cachet, build quality and truly superb lens that that entails.
If you're looking for something a little different, a little quirkier, a little classier than the average point-and-shoot, the X2 fits the bill snugly.
Great build quality and finish
The Leica X2 is a superb expert compact that'll please photo enthusiasts looking for a simple model that takes great-quality pictures and which isn't too slow to use. But the generally excellent quality makes it all the more difficult to overlook blips like the 230,000-dot screen and non-existent video mode.
Smoothness, sharpness and - frankly - noise free performance
If you're a studio photographer looking for mind bogglingly big files from a DSLR, you want a decent build, good colour performance, and you're not tied to a brand, then take a hard look at the Sigma SD1 Merrill. The pictures are very good after all and ultimately that's what's important, especially now that it won't (almost literally) break the bank.
Excellent IQ at low ISOs
In terms of specification, the Sigma SD1 Merrill might lack the finery of other cameras at this price point, but its stripped back set of controls is refreshing.
Its limitations do mean that this isn't a camera we can recommend as an all-rounder, though. If you're after a DSLR that offers high resolution, high speed and high-spec features, look at the Canon 5D Mark III or Sony Alpha A77 instead.
Strong colour available from the camera
The Sigma SD1 is capable of taking some gorgeous photos with excellent detail at the pixel level, however to get the best from the camera it is necessary to take everything as RAW and process the files. While you can shoot JPEG images, due to the camera's poor in-camera image processing the results are greatly disappointing in comparison and do not do the camera any justice.
Detail and sharpness
The SD1's poor high ISO results, unpredictable auto white balance, lack of live view and slow processing make it one to avoid for the casual user. But pros in the know will be impressed with the rich colour and staggering detail possible at ISO 100. Great for some studio and landscape photographers and pros in the know, but otherwise unsuitable for the masses.
Superior image quality it delivers at low ISO
So what's the final word? Is the Sigma SD1 worth the premium price tag it carries and the attention of professional and enthusiast photographers? There is actually no definitive answer to these questions. For landscape and studio photographers the SD1 will be an outstanding, unique camera worth every single penny.
Appealing to photographers ready to explore sophisticated new creative possibilities, the DSLR-A580 and DSLR-A560 from Sony offer unparalleled levels of imaging refinement.
Both cameras will launch in October, with the A560 costing $650 sans lens, or $750 with an 18-55mm zoom lens. No pricing has been announced for the A580. Approx. 599g (excluding battery, media and accessories).
Excellent still-image and HD-video quality.
The Canon EOS 7D is one of the best midrange D-SLRs money can buy. But if you don't need comprehensive video recording features or ultra-high-resolution images, there are a handful of competing D-SLRs that produce comparable image quality for half the price.
Canon's EOS 7D is a direct response to Nikon's D300s. The company has taken a good long look at the areas where Nikon always had the edge over models like the EOS 40D and 50D, and addressed almost all of them here. No longer can Nikon claim a bigger viewfinder, faster continuous shooting, colour-based metering, on-demand viewfinder graphics, wireless flash control or superior AF as reasons to go for its model over its closest rival.
Video quality is very good, outputting low noise vide as it does for stills.
The Canon EOS 7D is an incredibly versatile camera. Its rich feature set make it one of the most complete DSLRs available. Given its high-resolution sensor, wide range of ISO sensitivities, high-speed continuous drive, there is no subject too difficult for it. Its durable and weather-sealed body can be taken to more places than most DSLRs.
high quality images
Canon's flagship APS-C camera has definitely put Canon back in the game. The Canon EOS 7D certainly holds its own against all other cameras in its class. I'd even say that it holds its own against its big brother, the 5D Mark II, unless you want full frame. The AF focusing system is a joy to use, and its image quality is superb. Plus, its rugged build quality and ability to produce high quality images in both RAW and JPEG make it well worth the money.
Great 18MP photo quality
We have no reservations about giving the Canon EOS 7D an Editor's Choice designation it's a great DSLR that just so happens to record high-definition videos. The big question, though: Is the camera worth its steep asking price? Happily, the answer is yes, since it's an investment that will pay you back for years to come in terms of great photos. Moreover, for those who enjoy a challenge, it will take some time to learn all of the device's capabilities.
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