Full review posted for Nikon D70S|
(Friday, July 1, 2005 - 18:05 EDT)
In the bit over a year since the introduction of the original Nikon D70, rival Canon has answered that camera's challenge strongly with their Digital Rebel XT model, catching up quite a bit in the areas of startup time and responsiveness, as well as in resolution and detail rendition.
That said though, the Nikon D70S retains the advantage of a superior lens with a wider zoom range and slightly wider maximum aperture. It also retains the superb in-hand feel and ergonomics of the original D70, while the Rebel XT has gone quite a bit in the other direction with a tiny handgrip that's simply too small to be comfortable for many users. (Although for that very reason, the Rebel XT is likely to be very appealing to many women.)
For shooters interested in flash photography, the D70S easily leads the field, with its combination of matrix metering for fill flash operation, and its direct support (no accessories needed) for true wireless TTL-metered flash operation with Nikon's SB-600 and SB-800 flash units. With its dead-simple "green zone" operation and host of helpful scene modes, the D70S is also a very approachable camera for novice users. This is an important consideration, given how well a d-SLR matches the needs of typical family shooting, an application where less-sophisticated users really need the things that d-SLRs do so well. (Fast shutter response, good high-ISO performance.) In fact, if you're at all wrestling with the issue of whether to go with a high-end "all in one" digicam or a digital SLR, you should really check out our article "SLR vs All-in-one: Which way to go?".)
Whatever your interests, the bottom line is that the Nikon D70S is an exceptionally capable, well-performing digital SLR, every bit worthy of the storied Nikon name. (In case it wasn't already obvious, it's highly recommended, and an easy Dave's Pick.) Read our Nikon D70S review for all the details!