Project 365: Oh my, but I do love this new camera!

by DaniGirl on March 20, 2011 · 3 comments

in Photo of the Day

So I am head-over-heels in *love* with my new camera!

For those of you who missed it last week, I finally upgraded my trusty and well-loved Nikon D40 last week. Way back when we bought it in 2007, we waffled over the upgrade to a D80, but it seemed like more camera than I would ever need. And quite frankly, it was the right choice at that time.

Over the years, though, I started to run into a few limitations on the D40. It wouldn’t auto-focus my favourite lens, for one thing. It has a very limited ISO range for another. And not that I use flash a lot, but I was intrigued by the idea of using my pop-up flash to trigger my hot-shoe flash remotely — something the D40 could not do but the 90 could.

It was about half way through my first 365 project in 2009 that I started to actively covet the D90. I couldn’t justify the expense, though, when the D40 was doing 80% of the job I needed from it. Over the last six months, though, it has become increasingly apparent that the D40 is getting a little, um, tired. North of 30,000 shutter clicks, and I’m not sure it’s registering saturated reds and yellows anymore, and the autofocus is getting noticeably soft.

I proposed that I reinvest some of my blog and photography money into a new camera, and Beloved agreed it was time. And then I started looking around and discovered this awesome new camera that I’d been hearing about since it was released by Nikon last autumn, the D7000.

And I wanted one. Badly! In what I thought was a brilliant plan, I used Beloved’s own tactic of mentioning the idea of investing in a D7000 over a D90 every time there was a lull in the conversation for three days.

“Hi sweetie, how was your day? So, did you think about the D7000 yet?”

“Can you pass me the ketchup, please? And did you read that DP Reviews l link I sent you about the D7000?

“Wake up, you’re late for work! And hey, did you know Ken Rockwell calls the D7000 the best digital camera EVER?”

Yeah, it’s totally annoying. And it totally works. That’s how he got his laptop, and BluRay player, and flat-screen TV. He’d been annoying the snot out of me about the iPad, and so we made an unholy deal where I could get the D7000 if he could get an iPad 3 when they come out in September. Oy, what a family!

Do you speak camera? The D7000 has a 16MP sensor, while the D40 has a 6MP sensor. The D7000 has 39 focus points where the D40 has 3. And where the D40 has an ISO range of 200 to 800 (it actually goes to 3200 but I have yet to get a decent picture above 800 even using Lightroom’s noise reduction features) the D7000 has a dizzying 100 to 25,600 range. Be still my low-light-loving heart!!

It is, in short, the most! amazing! camera! ever!

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, though, so all the technical specs in the world don’t matter until you take that camera for a test drive. And here’s what that beauty can do.

This is Tristan enjoying a hot chocolate on our annual pilgrimage to the Log Farm sugar shack.

81:365 Log farm (1 of 6)

And Simon, also at the Log Farm.

Log farm (2 of 6)

Here’s my tree-climbing, rope-swinging adventure boy in crisp and lovely detail.

80:365 Adventure boy

Even the best camera can’t compensate when you choose a depth of field too shallow to keep your ensemble in focus, but a good camera only goes so far! šŸ˜‰ Still, I’m happy with this capture of the boys and their cousins, who spent most of March Break with us.

83:365 Lunchtime

At the other end of the generational spectrum, we also had a visit from Beloved’s family this weekend. Ron is a fisherman par excellence, and Dee cooked us up what seemed like about 10 lbs of fresh whitefish. Don’t you just love houseguests who arrive with arms laden with delicious food and take over your kitchen to cook it?

85:365 Grandparents

I love love love this next picture. I love the luminosity of it, the warmth in the pose and the background, and the sheer joy of it. All the kids love “Uncle Beloved” because they know he’s just a bigger version of them, totally a kid at heart.

82:365 Ticklefest

The weather has been mild and melty, and the Rideau River is cresting this weekend. Last weekend, the water was rushing at Watson’s Mill even with the sluice gates fully opened.

79:365 Watson's Mill and the spring melt

And to my delight, the geese have returned from their winter sojourn. It must really be spring now! Funny, I have always noticed the geese on their fall migration, but only in living so close to the river have I noticed them on their spring return.

84:365 Signs of spring

(This is a crazy-deep crop of an image I took with my camera braced on my car, standing in the road about 50m from the river. The segment you see here is probably less than 1/5 of the original capture — and I’m thrilled with the amount of detail!)

As you can see, it was a ridiculously busy week, but a perfect one to take the new camera for a test drive!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Paula March 20, 2011 at 2:18 pm

Great, great photos. I’d love that camera too!

2 Annika March 21, 2011 at 7:57 am

Incredible photo of the mill, one of my favourite places in the region.

3 Lee March 22, 2011 at 2:54 pm

I’m so glad that you now have that which you coveted!

And you take far better photographs with that camera than I could. I love them all!

Whenever I look at the photo of the geese above, I can’t help but see musical notes on a staff! They’re strangely all facing the same direction and vaguely even in the their spacing. I wonder what the melody sounds like.

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