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Konica Minolta Dynax 7D Digital Camera Review

Digital Camera Review by: Michael Gazzola

 

Konica Minolta has finally entered the arena for high end DSLR's with the new Dynax 7D digital camera - producing some outstanding results. In many reviews on the web, you will find that each review has been conducted using a zoom lens which is good, but by no means as good a fixed focal length pro lens. This review was conducted using 3 professional fixed focal length lenses - 20mm, 50mm and 100mm AF lenses, to see what the camera is really capable of.

 

On first impressions, the body looks and feels great. It's built with a strong metal frame and has a combination of hard black plastic for a shell and rubber on the grip. It is well sized, a good working weight for balance and feels ergonomically good in the photographer's hands. There is a big LCD (2.5 inches) for quick reviewing which for a pro body should be standard by all manufactures design briefs, and a brightly lit viewfinder. It's worth noting that the Dynax 7D is one of only a few DSLR's on the market with a 2.5 inch LCD.

The camera has plenty of individual buttons for the main functions and an easy menu for navigation, which does not impend on shooting time when on the job. It looks and feels very sturdy and appears to be designed for photographers to have access to all the main 7D's functions without breaking stride while shooting.

 

Konica Minolta's new and exclusive 'Anti-Shake' feature introduced into the body of the camera is a world first, and has already ready received a number of awards for this new technology. Although Anti-Shake has been around for a while, Konica Minolta are the first to build the technology into the body of the camera - where in the past it has been in the lens. The real bonus of this design is that all your lenses which you can use on this camera instantly become Anti-Shake, effectively saving the photographer a lot of money.

 

For those unaware of what this technology, it basically means where a photographer once required a steady hand from a 30th second shutter speed and lower, they can now shoot still objects as low as a ¼ of a second with no blur. Or in other terms, it now allows the photographer about 2 stops extra out of their lenses.

However the price of this technology sees the Dynax 7D removing a few more dollars from your wallet… but with all your lenses now utelising the Anti-Shake technology it seems to all balance out.

 

The 6 mega-pixel capture produced very clean, crisp and clear images. While in testing the camera was put through a half-day studio fashion shoot and worked tirelessly. The camera shot 400+ images during the shoot and when further tested allowed over 600 shots before the battery required a recharge.

 

Whether shooting in portrait or landscape format, a unique feature was that the information on the LCD cleverly rotated accordingly. Furthermore, the developers of the Dynax 7D have also included a battery saving feature, where the LCD turns off when the photographer is using the viewfinder.

 

The camera's start up is less than a second and pretty much ready to go when you are. When shooting, there was no lag while clicking away making your digital photography experience smooth and frustration free.

When using either of the three AF lenses focussing was fast and precise, even in low light. This was a very important result as photographers working in a studio with time constraints simply do not have a moment to spare with waiting for slow focussing cameras - so the Dynax 7D excelled.

 

The camera was also taken out on location and given a good go in various lighting conditions from bright sunlight to dim shaded areas. While in the sunlight, I took the opportunity to test for purple fringing, and only when I had my model wear a white shirt in extremely bright light against a dark background did I manage to produce minimal fringing. So this was not really an issue to worry about for 99.9% of shots.

 

medal-gold-r.jpgThe ISO options test produced smooth noise free images up to 400 ISO. After this a small amount of noise was visible at 800 and a little more at 1600. Overall the capture was very good producing results many minolta lens owners would be satisfied with if considering to purchase this model.

 

For transferring images to the computer, Konica Minolta have created a neat little hole in the side door panel (where the CF is entered) for the USB plug. This makes life a little easier and reduces any chance of the photographer knocking the door back too far when open.

 

Overall, this camera was a joy to use and will satisfy many photographers with Minolta AF lenses looking to go digital without incurring a huge expense.

 

Appearance rating 4 stars
Functionality rating 4.5 stars
Image quality rating 4 stars
Value for money 4 stars
RRP (AUD)
$2,200
SPACER.GIF  
Effective Pixels 6 Million mega pixels
Image Sizes 3 Sizes / 3 quality modes
Lens - zoom wide [mm] -
Lens -zoom tele [mm] -
Resolution Settings From 1504 x 1000 to 3008 x 2000
Modes 4 Individual. Plus auto.
Manual Focus Yes
Auto Focus Yes
Focus Range [cm] -
Aperture Range -
Aperture Priority No
Macro Yes
Macro Range [cm] -
Shutter Speeds 30 seconds - 1/4000
Shutter Priority No
ISO 6 Options. 100 - 1600. 3200 in custom.
LCD Monitor Yes
LCD Size 2.5 inch TFT colour monitor
Viewfinder Yes. Optical.
Flash Yes. On camera and hot shoe
Hot Shoe Yes
White balance 8 options. Plus auto.
Self Timer Yes. 10 & 2 seconds.
Movie Options No
Audio Options No
Video Out Yes. NTSC / PAL
Storage Type CF Cards
Storage Included [Mb] 16Mb Removable Toshiba SD Card
Image / Audio Formats Raw / Jpeg
Connectivity USB.
Power Source Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
Dimensions 150mm x 106mm x 78mm
Weight 760 grams without battery or lens



















 
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