ISO Performance at Low ISOs (ISO 100-800)
Let’s take a look at how the Nikon D7100 performs at low ISOs. Here are some crops at ISO 100, 200, 400 and 800 (100% crop):
ISO 100, 200 and 400 look very clean to me, with only a hint of noise in the shadows as ISO goes up. ISO 800 picks up more noise across the frame, especially in the shadows. Overall, the ISO performance of the Nikon D7100 at low ISOs yields very good results.
High ISO Performance (ISO 1600-6400)
High ISO performance is a very important measure of DSLR sensor quality. Here is how the Nikon D7100 performs at high ISO levels between ISO 1600 and 6400:
ISO 1600 adds a bit more grain when compared to ISO 800, but there is still plenty of detail to work with. I would not hesitate to use ISO 3200 on the D7100 as well and would probably use noise reduction software if I needed to get rid of the noise. ISO 6400 adds a lot more grain though, with some loss of detail across the frame. Judging from the above crops and my field tests, I personally would shoot between ISO 100-1600 and push ISO to 3200-6400 every once in a while when needed. With so much resolution, the amount of noise can be reduced and sharpness can be increased when downsampling.
High ISO Performance “Boost” (ISO 12800-25600)
Nikon D7100 has two extra ISO “boost” levels – ISO 12800 and ISO 25600 for extreme situations. Let’s take a look at these:
As expected, boost levels increase the amount of noise significantly. There is plenty of loss of detail across the frame at ISO 12800 and ISO 25600 just looks really bad. Personally, I would never use these ISO levels, since image quality is degraded by a huge margin.
ISO Performance Summary
It is hard to judge the performance of the Nikon D7100 without direct comparison against other cameras, which is why you should definitely check out the next pages of this review. One thing for sure – the Nikon D7100 performs very well for a DX camera. Let’s see what kind of a difference there is between the new sensor on the Nikon D7100 and the older generation Nikon D7000. Click the next page below to see the comparison.
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