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Konica Minolta Dynax Maxxum 7D

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Maxxum 7D Sample Images

Review First Posted: 11/27/2004, Updated: 02/01/2005

Digital Cameras - Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D Test Images

 

I've begun including links in our reviews to a Thumbnail index page for the test shots. The data on this page includes a host of information on the images, including shutter speed, ISO setting, compression setting, etc. Rather than clutter the page below with all that detail, we're posting the thumbnail index so only those interested in the information need wade through it!

 

"Sunlit" Portrait:
(This is my new "Outdoor" Portrait test - read more about it here.)

High resolution and strong detail, but slightly high contrast. Accurate but slightly dark-looking color. Good midtone and shadow detail, with low noise.

The extreme tonal range of this image makes it a tough shot for many digital cameras, which is precisely why I set it up this way, and why I shoot it with no fill flash or reflector to open the shadows. The object is to hold both highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat" picture with muddy colors, and the Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D handled the challenge fairly well.

The shot at right was taken with a +1.0 EV exposure compensation adjustment (a fairly typical amount of adjustment), as the default exposure was quite dark. The highlights are quite bright on the white shirt, and lose some detail, but midtones look pretty good and the shadows show a lot of detail as well. I chose the Maxxum 7D's 4,900 Kelvin white balance setting , as it produced the most neutral overall color and white value. (No surprise really, the lights in this shot are right at 4900K.) The Auto, Daylight, and Manual settings each produced warmer color balances.

Marti's skin tones look pretty good, but the blue flowers in the bouquet are a little darker than in real life, but the hue is pretty accurate. (Many digital cameras have trouble with the blue flowers, which are really a light navy blue with hints of purple.) The yellow flower is a bit more green in it than the actual subject does, but the strong greens and reds look about right, if slightly muted. Resolution is very high, and detail is strong throughout the frame, with good definition in the fabric details of the flowers as well as in the creases on the backdrop. Shadow detail is very good, and image noise is low. All in all, a very nice job.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files D7OUT49KP0.HTM through D7OUT49KP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.


Contrast Series:
The Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D has a good contrast adjustment, but I'd really like to see its effect extend further in the low contrast direction. To its credit though, there's relatively little interaction between the contrast adjustment and color saturation.

Contrast Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest


Saturation Series:
A good saturation control, with a useful range of adjustment, in nice-sized steps.

Saturation Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest



 

Closer Portrait:

Outstanding resolution and detail.

Overall exposure looks pretty good here, though contrast is just slightly high. Still, midtone detail is strong and shadow detail is quite good as well. The shot at right was taken with a +0.7 EV exposure compensation adjustment, a bit more than the average required for this shot. Resolution and detail are even stronger in this close-up shot, with excellent definition in Marti's face and hair, as well as in the fabric leaves and the gold necklace.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files D7OUTFACP0.HTM through D7OUTFACP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

Indoor Portrait, Flash:
Normal Flash
+0.3 EV
Slow-Sync Flash
No EV Adjust

Great performance with both flash modes, though the warmer color of the Slow-Sync flash mode and more even coverage is slightly more appealing.

The Maxxum 7D's built-in flash illuminated the subject very well with a +0.3 EV exposure compensation adjustment, though the default exposure was also bright. Color looks very good, just slightly warm from the room lighting, with good skin tones on Marti's face. The flower bouquet also looks pretty good, though the blue flowers are dark and a bit purplish. The camera's Slow-Sync flash setting produced similar results, though with more even coverage from the longer shutter speed. A slight orange cast is present on Marti's hair and in a few other places from the background incandescent lighting, but the warmer color actually appears more natural than that of the standard flash shot. I found the best results in this mode with a +0.3 EV exposure compensation adjustment. Very good results overall.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV in the normal flash mode, see files D7INFP0.HTM through D7INFP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.

To view the same exposure series in the Slow-Sync flash mode, see files D7INFSP0.HTM through D7INFSP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

Indoor Portrait, No Flash:
Auto White Balance
Incandescent White Balance
Manual White Balance
2,500 Kelvin White Balance
2,700 Kelvin White Balance

Excellent color with the 2,700 Kelvin and Incandescent white balance settings, and a good exposure as well.

This shot is always a very tough test of a camera's white balance capability, given the strong, yellowish color cast of the household incandescent bulbs used for the lighting. I found the best results with the Maxxum 7D's 2,700 Kelvin and Incandescent white balance settings, and eventually settled on the 2,700 Kelvin option as the most pleasing to my eye. The 2,500 Kelvin and Manual settings produced nearly accurate results, but with slightly cool color casts, while the camera's Auto white balance resulted in a yellow image. (Very nice that the 7D's Kelvin scale reaches this low - Most d-SLRs stop at considerably higher levels, and are therefore unable to handle household incandescent lighting.) Marti's skin tone looks natural, and the flower bouquet looks good as well, but the blue flowers are dark and purplish (a common problem under this difficult light source). The main shot was taken with a +1.0 EV exposure compensation adjustment, which is about average.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files D7INK27P0.HTM through D7INK27P4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.

ISO Series:
Noise is generally quite low on the Maxxum 7D, even at ISO 400, where I usually notice a large jump in the level. Even at ISO 800, the noise level is reasonable. At ISO 1,600, noise is definitely higher, but not to the extent that I'd expect, and its "grain pattern" is quite tight, which makes it less noticeable than it would be otherwise.

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400
ISO 800 ISO 1,600



 

House Shot:
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Good color with excellent resolution and detail.

The Maxxum 7D's Manual white balance setting proved the most accurate here, based on the white value of the house trim and the overall color balance. The Daylight and Auto settings resulted in slightly warmer casts (with the Daylight setting producing the strongest of the two). Resolution is very high, and a lot of fine detail is present in the tree limbs above the roof, as well as in the front shrubbery and house front. Details are well-defined throughout the frame, with particularly good definition in the shadows and highlights of the brick pattern.



 

Far-Field Test

Excellent detail and resolution, though color balance is slightly warm with the Auto setting. Midtones look a little dark as well, and contrast a bit high.

This image is shot at infinity to test far-field lens performance. NOTE that this image cannot be directly compared to the other "house" shot, which is a poster, shot in the studio. The rendering of detail in the poster will be very different than in this shot, and color values (and even the presence or absence of leaves on the trees!) will vary in this subject as the seasons progress. In general though, you can evaluate detail in the bricks, shingles and window detail, and in the tree branches against the sky. Compression artifacts are most likely to show in the trim along the edge of the roof, in the bricks, or in the relatively "flat" areas in the windows.

This is my ultimate "resolution shot," given the infinite range of detail in a natural scene like this, and the Maxxum 7D captures good detail for its 6-megapixel resolution. The leaf patterns in the front shrubbery and in the tree limbs above the roof show a lot of fine detail, with great definition even in the tree bark. The bright sunlight causes the camera to lose detail in the bright white paint surrounding the bay window, though some is still visible. Detail is also good in the shadow area above the front door. The overall exposure is a little dark, and color balance is warm from the Auto white balance setting. Still, good results overall. The table below shows a standard resolution and quality series, followed by ISO, sharpness, saturation, contrast, and hue series.

Resolution Series:

Wide Angle "Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
"Economy"
JPEG
3,008 x 2,000
D7FAR3008F
D7FAR3008N
D7FAR3008E
2,256 x 1,496
D7FAR2256
-
1,504 x 1,000
D7FAR1504
-


ISO Series:
As before, the 7D's noise levels are surprisingly low at ISO 800 and 1600, but the camera does trade away quite a bit of subject detail to achieve the low noise numbers. Still, noise in the 7D's images is generally low, and its grain pattern is very tight.

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400
ISO 800 ISO 1,600


Sharpness Series:
A good range of sharpening adjustment. Lowest level takes unsharp masking on the computer very well, highest would work well for smallish inkjet prints. The default is a good balance between sharpness and artifacts.

Sharpness Series
Very Soft
Soft
Normal
Hard Very Hard


Saturation Series:
As before, a good range of saturation adjustment, with nice small steps.

Saturation Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest


Contrast Series:
The Maxxum 7D's contrast adjustment does an excellent job, affecting both ends of the tonal scale more or less equally. (That is, you can adjust contrast without affecting midtone exposures, a desirable characteristic.)

Contrast Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest


Hue Series:
Pretty subtle, which I guess is good, but I'd like to see a bit wider range of adjustment on this control.

Hue Series
-2
-1
Normal
+1
+2



 

Lens Zoom Range

Because the Maxxum 7D hosts a range of Konica Minolta lenses, performance here will vary with the lens.




 

Musicians Poster
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Good color with all three white balances, though the best results at Auto. Excellent detail and resolution.

This shot is often a tough test for digital cameras, as the abundance of blue in the composition frequently tricks white balance systems into producing a warm color balance. The Maxxum 7D's Auto setting actually handled this challenge very well, and I chose it for the main shot. The Daylight setting also produced good results, though a bit warm for my taste, and the Manual setting resulted in a slight magenta cast (but still nearly accurate results). The blue background and robe do have purplish tints that aren't in the original image, but overall color still looks good. Resolution is excellent, with a lot of visible fine detail in the embroidery on the blue robe and vest, as well as in the instruments and accessories. (The original data file for this poster was only 20MB though, so cameras like the Maxxum 7D are capable of showing more detail than the poster has in it.)



 

Macro Shot

This is another area where the lens in use will determine results, since the Maxxum 7D accommodates a wide range of Konica Minolta lenses.



 

"Davebox" Test Target
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance
Manual White Balance

Good overall exposure and color.

The Maxxum 7D's Manual white balance setting produced the best results here, as both the Auto and Daylight settings resulted in warm casts. Exposure is just a little bright, but the Maxxum 7D distinguishes the subtle tonal variations of the Q60 target well. The large color blocks are all pretty accurate, with most of them dead-on the correct hue and saturation. Blues are very slightly oversaturated, with the cyan block shifted slightly toward blue. As is usually the case among the cameras I test, reds are somewhat oversaturated, the bright red block particularly so. Overall color accuracy is a good bit better than average though, although that means that the 7D's colors across much of the spectrum will look a bit undersaturated compared to the output from some competing models which tend to oversaturate slightly.

Detail is strong in the shadow area of the charcoal briquettes, with moderately low noise, and highlights show good detail as well. Quite a good job overall.



Now, for the REAL technoids, Imatest!

I've recently begun using Norman Koren's excellent "Imatest" analysis program for quantitative, thoroughly objective analysis of digicam test images. For those interested, I've prepared a page summarizing what Imatest showed me about the Maxxum 7D's images.

The images series below duplicate examples of various camera controls we've already covered above. I include them here though, for our more analytically-minded readers, who'd like to see the effect of various camera controls with a well-known target like the MacBeth Color Checker (tm).


ISO Series:

ISO Series
ISO 100
ISO 200
ISO 400
ISO 800 ISO 1,600


Contrast Series:

Contrast Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest


Saturation Series:

Saturation Series
Lowest
Low
Normal
High
Highest



 

Low-Light Tests

Excellent low-light performance. Good color and exposure, with low image noise, even at the darkest light levels of this test. Good lowlight autofocus. (1/8 foot-candle without AF-assist, total darkness with AF illuminator.)

The Maxxum 7D produced clear, bright, usable images down to the 1/16 foot-candle (0.67 lux) limit of my test, with good color at the 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1,600 ISO settings. Color was generally quite good, though the dimmer exposures often resulted in a light pink cast. Noise was quite low at all ISO levels, although it did increase to a noticeable extent at ISO 800 and 1600. As was the case at higher light levels though, the 7D trades away subject detail to achieve its low noise levels at high ISO. There was relatively little difference between the shots taken with and without Noise Reduction enabled, although the noise reduction did remove a few "hot pixels" that crept into the images at the longest exposure times. The 7D's autofocus worked well at low light levels, focusing to a bit below 1/8 foot-candle with the AF-assist light disabled, and on nearby objects in complete darkness with the AF illuminator turned on. The table below shows the best exposure I was able to obtain for each of a range of illumination levels. Images in this table (like all sample photos) are untouched, exactly as they came from the camera.

(Note: If you'd like to use a light meter to check light levels for subjects you might be interested in shooting, a light level of one foot-candle corresponds to a normal exposure of two seconds at f/2.8 and ISO 100.)

  1 fc
11 lux
1/2 fc
5.5 lux
1/4 fc
2.7 lux
1/8 fc
1.3 lux
1/16 fc
0.67 lux
1/16fc
No NR
ISO
100
Click to see D7LL00103.JPG
1.6 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00104.JPG
3.2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00105.JPG
6 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00106.JPG
13 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00107.JPG
15 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00107XNR.JPG
15 sec
f2.8
ISO
200
Click to see D7LL00203.JPG
1/1 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00204.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00205.JPG
3.2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00206.JPG
6 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00207.JPG
10 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00207XNR.JPG
10 sec
f2.8
ISO
400
Click to see D7LL00403.JPG
1/2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00404.JPG
1/1 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00405.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00406.JPG
4 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00407.JPG
5 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00407XNR.JPG
5 sec
f2.8
ISO
800
Click to see D7LL00803.JPG
1/5 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00804.JPG
1/2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00805.JPG
1 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00806.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00807.JPG
2.5 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL00807XNR.JPG
2.5 sec
f2.8
ISO
1600
Click to see D7LL01603.JPG
1/10 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL01604.JPG
1/5 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL01605.JPG
1/2 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL01606.JPG
1 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL01607.JPG
1.3 sec
f2.8
Click to see D7LL01607XNR.JPG
1.3 sec
f2.8



 

Flash Range Test

A powerful flash, with plenty of light all the way to 14 feet.

In my testing, the Maxxum 7D's flash illuminated the test target all the way to 14 feet, without any significant decrease in intensity. (I'm not sure why the ISO came out to 125, I'm pretty sure we shot this with ISO 100.) Below is the flash range series, with distances from eight to 14 feet from the target.

8 ft 9 ft 10 ft 11 ft 12 ft 13 ft 14 ft
Click to see D7FL08.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL09.JPG
1/125 sec
f3.2
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL10.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL11.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL12.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL13.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125
Click to see D7FL14.JPG
1/125 sec
f2.8
ISO 125



 

ISO-12233 (WG-18) Resolution Test

Very high resolution, 1,400 lines of "strong detail."

The Maxxum 7D performed very well on the "laboratory" resolution test chart for its 6.1-megapixel class. I didn't see artifacts in the test patterns until resolutions as high as 1,200 lines per picture height in both directions. I found "strong detail" out to at least 1,450 lines on the horizontal axis, 1,400 vertically. "Extinction" of the target patterns didn't occur until about 1,650 lines.

Geometric distortion on the Maxxum 7D will depend on the lens in use. With a 17-35mm f/2.8-4.0 zoom, I found approximately 0.8 percent barrel distortion at wide angle. The telephoto end did quite a bit better, as I measured approximately 0.07 percent pincushion distortion (about two pixels' worth). Chromatic aberration was virtually nonexistent, as I couldn't really find any strong pixels of coloration. (This distortion is visible as a very slight colored fringe around the objects at the edges of the field of view on the resolution target.)


Resolution Series, 50mm f/1.4 lens,
Wide Angle "Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
"Economy"
JPEG
3,008 x 2,000
D7RES3008F
D7RES3008N
D7RES3008E
2,256 x 1,496
D7RES2256
-
-
1,504 x 1,000
D7RES1504
-
-


Sharpness Series:

Sharpness Series
Very Soft
Soft
Normal
Hard Very Hard



 

Viewfinder Accuracy/Flash Uniformity

A very accurate digital SLR.

The Maxxum 7D's Digital SLR viewfinder is very accurate, showing about 98 percent of the final image area at wide angle, and about 99+ percent at telephoto, much better than most SLRs in its price range. Flash distribution is rather uneven wide angle (a 17mm focal length here, a stretch for any camera's built-in flash, even allowing for the sensor's multiplier factor), with strong falloff at the corners and edges of the frame. At telephoto, however, coverage was much more uniform.




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<<Reference: Datasheet | Maxxum 7D Imatest Results>>

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