Nikon D7200 Image Quality Comparison

Below are crops from our laboratory Still Life target comparing the Nikon D7200 vs. the Nikon D7100, Canon 7D Mark II, Pentax K-3, Samsung NX1 and Sony A77 II. These models represent the top current enthusiast APS-C offerings from their manufacturer.

NOTE: These images are best quality JPEGs straight out of the camera, at default settings including noise reduction and using the camera's actual base ISO (not extended ISO settings). All cameras in this comparison were shot with our very sharp reference lenses. Clicking any crop will take you to a carrier page where you can click once again to access the full resolution image as delivered straight from the camera. For those interested in working with the RAW files involved: click these links to visit each camera's respective sample image thumbnail page:Nikon D7200, Nikon D7100, Canon 7D Mark II, Pentax K-3, Samsung NX1 and Sony A77 II -- links to the RAW files appear beneath those for the JPEG images, wherever we have them. And remember, you can always go to our world-renowned Comparometer to compare the Nikon D7200 to any camera we've ever tested.

Nikon D7200 vs Nikon D7100 at Base ISO

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 100
Nikon D7200 at ISO 100
Nikon D7100 at ISO 100

With a similar chip but a new Expeed 4 processor, we do see some obvious differences here at base ISO, at least with the in-camera JPEGs. The bottle lettering and mosaic tiles on the D7200 appear crisper and sharper, as does the pink fabric swatch. Curiously, the red fabric swatch shows far less fine detail than on the D7100.

Nikon D7200 vs Canon 7D Mark II at Base ISO

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 100
Nikon D7200 at ISO 100
Canon 7D Mark II at ISO 100

With roughly 4 more megapixels resolution, there's an apparent size difference between these two competitors. The D7200 is capable of more fine detail in most areas, and notably in the pink fabric swatch which the 7D II somewhat misses here.

Nikon D7200 vs Pentax K-3 at Base ISO

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 100
Nikon D7200 at ISO 100
Pentax K-3 at ISO 100

Similar resolutions and similar results between these two models, at least in the first two crops. The K3 appears to extract just a wee bit more fine detail in the mosaic tiles area, and certainly more in the red fabric (a very accurate rendition, actually!) but then loses some ground in the pink fabric for both fine detail loss and inaccurate hue rendering (too much towards the magenta side).

Nikon D7200 vs Samsung NX1 at Base ISO

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 100
Nikon D7200 at ISO 100
Samsung NX1 at ISO 100

With about 4 more megapixels resolution as well as more aggressive default sharpening, the NX1 displays quite a bit more fine detail here at base ISO than does the D7200. This will be an interesting contest as ISO rises down below!

Nikon D7200 vs Sony A77 II at Base ISO

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 100
Nikon D7200 at ISO 100
Sony A77 II at ISO 100

The cameras have roughly the same resolution but the crops were made in slightly different areas, and thus the initial difference in appearance. It's really a very close call between these two here at base ISO. The D7200 has perhaps just a touch more fine detail in the first two crops, while the A77 II reverses that in the red fabric swatch with more detail present.


Nikon D7200 vs Nikon D7100 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 1600
Nikon D7200 at ISO 1600
Nikon D7100 at ISO 1600

Wow... the first two crops from the D7200 are far cleaner than the predecessor, and yet it loses all contrast detail in the red swatch! This is a somewhat startling trend, because Nikons have traditionally handled the red swatch better than most anyone else across the board. The D7200 does do better in the pink swatch though.

Nikon D7200 vs Canon 7D Mark II at ISO 1600

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 1600
Nikon D7200 at ISO 1600
Canon 7D Mark II at ISO 1600

Similar to the above comparison, The D7200 does a better job at controlling noise while preserving some detail in most all areas except for the red fabric.

Nikon D7200 vs Pentax K-3 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 1600
Nikon D7200 at ISO 1600
Pentax K-3 at ISO 1600

The D7200 slightly bests the K3 in all areas of this comparison, especially in the top bottle crop.

Nikon D7200 vs Samsung NX1 at ISO 1600

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 1600
Nikon D7200 at ISO 1600
Samsung NX1 at ISO 1600

This is where matters get even more interesting. Where the NX1 shows more fine detail rendering on a first glance, so too does it begin to introduce unwanted artifacts, such as small mottling areas in the bottle, and some smearing in the mosaic tiles. Neither camera performs well with the fabric swatches here.

Nikon D7200 vs Sony A77 II at ISO 1600

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 1600
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 1600100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 1600
Nikon D7200 at ISO 1600
Sony A77 II at ISO 1600

The A77 II also suffers from artifacts due to aggressive attempts at sharpening, displaying some mottling in the bottle crop and smearing in the mosaic tiles. It does however out-perform in the tricky red swatch here.

Nikon D7200 vs Nikon D7100 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 3200
Nikon D7200 at ISO 3200
Nikon D7100 at ISO 3200

At ISO 3200 the D7100 has quite a bit more noise in the first crop, though renders the mosaic tile area a bit more accurately and brings some detail to the red fabric, though again not the pink fabric. Each cameras have good and bad areas here.

Nikon D7200 vs Canon 7D Mark II at ISO 3200

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 3200
Nikon D7200 at ISO 3200
Canon 7D Mark II at ISO 3200

As with ISO 1600, the D7200 wins this competition handily in virtually all areas except the red fabric.

Nikon D7200 vs Pentax K-3 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 3200
Nikon D7200 at ISO 3200
Pentax K-3 at ISO 3200

Similarly, the K3 can't hold stride with the D7200 as ISO rises, displaying quite a bit of noise in some areas and smearing in others.

Nikon D7200 vs Samsung NX1 at ISO 3200

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 3200
Nikon D7200 at ISO 3200
Samsung NX1 at ISO 3200

The NX1 images are tough to look at here, and become quite a mess. Best to remain at ISO 1600 and below with that camera, at least if you're shooting default JPEGs. Processing from RAW files will likely yield better results than the camera can do on its own.

Nikon D7200 vs Sony A77 II at ISO 3200

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 3200
Nikon D7200 at ISO 3200
Sony A77 II at ISO 3200

The A77 II is no match here, losing ground in all areas except the red fabric.

Nikon D7200 vs. Nikon D7100, Canon 7D Mark II, Pentax K-3, Samsung NX1 and Sony A77 II

100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 100100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 100
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 3200100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 3200
100% crop from Nikon D7200 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Nikon D7100 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Canon 7D Mark II test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Pentax K-3 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Samsung NX1 test image taken at ISO 6400100% crop from Sony A77 II test image taken at ISO 6400
Nikon
D7200
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Nikon
D7100
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Canon
7D Mark II
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Pentax
K-3
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Samsung
NX1
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Sony
A77 II
ISO 100
ISO 3200
ISO 6400
Detail comparison. This is always an interesting table, and often yields somewhat different results than we see in the above tables, as fine detail is often rendered differently than other areas of our test target. The D7200 does a good job at balancing the detail without going overboard on the processing, most evident in the small red lettering. The NX1 brings a good amount of detail out of the Pur bottle letters, but we do start to see a trace of the smearing as ISO rises much as we saw in the above higher ISO tables. The 7D II and A77 II both do fairly well here, while the D7100 and K3 lose a bit of ground to the rest.

 

 

Nikon D7200 Print Quality

Canon PRO-1000 Printer ImageISO 100/200 deliver excellent prints at 30 x 40 inches and higher, as large as you can go until resolution begins to show up, with rich, vibrant colors and nice overall tonal depth.

ISO 400 prints are almost as good as at the top two ISOs, with only the faintest hint of noise in a few flatter areas of our target, and useful for all but the most critical of applications. For our official rating, we'll call 24 x 36 inch prints "good" here.

ISO 800 yields 20 x 30 inch prints that are quite good, with only subtle traces of noise in a few of the flatter areas of our target, and just a hint of softness in a few fine detail areas. It's also beginning to lose all evidence of fine detail on our tricky target red swatch, which is normal for most cameras except Nikons, which tend to do it better. They must have changed their default noise processing engine somewhat radically, though it works quite well in all other areas except for that one.

ISO 1600 produces a nice 16 x 20 inch print, quite good for an APS-C camera body at this ISO(!) and is also the first setting at which the D7200 outperforms its predecessor by a print size. Virtually all contrast detail is now lost in our target red swatch, but that's the only issue as all other areas look very good for both accurate color and fine detail.

ISO 3200 delivers an 11 x 14 inch print that looks similar in quality to the 16 x 20 at ISO 1600, where only the red swatch detail is lost, and all other areas work well including full color reproduction.

ISO 6400 prints an 11 x 14 that shows a bit too much noise to warrant our "good" rating, but are more than adequate for less critical applications. We'll give the 8 x 10's our full seal of approval here.

ISO 12,800 yields a very good 5 x 7 inch print. Unless you super-scope the image with a loupe you'd never know you were looking at an ISO this high, except for the loss of all fine detail in the target red swatch.

ISO 25,600 shows the D7200 once again besting its predecessor, as it's able to deliver a good 4 x 6 inch print with minimal visible noise, where the D7100 was unable to do so at this ISO.

The Nikon D7200 is a clear step up compared to the already very good D7100, besting it at two settings by a size but appearing better in general at all ISOs. It shows less noise all around, and yet somehow loses the target red swatch by about ISO 1600, which is unlike most Nikon bodies. One can only assume that they've tweaked their processing in order to further minimize noise in flatter areas, with the downside of the tweak showing up in the loss of detail in the red swatch. Still, this APS-C body delivers a super-solid 16 x 20 inch print at ISO 1600, and that's a worthwhile achievement. Well done on this one for image quality, Nikon.

About our print-quality testing: Our "Reference Printer"

Canon PRO-1000 Printer ImageTesting hundreds of digital cameras, we've found that you can only tell so much about a camera's image quality by viewing its images on-screen. Ultimately, there's no substitute for printing a lot of images and examining them closely. For this reason, we routinely print sample images from the cameras we test on our Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-1000 printer, which we named our "Printer of the Year" in our 2015 COTY awards.

The Canon PRO-1000 has a lot of characteristics that make it a natural to use for our "reference printer." When it comes to judging how well a camera's photos print, resolution and precise rendering are paramount. The PRO-1000's more than 18,000 individual nozzles combine with an air feeding system that provides exceptional droplet-placement accuracy. Its 11-color LUCIA PRO ink system delivers a wide color gamut and dense blacks, giving us a true sense of the cameras' image quality. To best see fine details, we've always printed on glossy paper, so the PRO-1000's "Chroma Optimizer" overcoat that minimizes "bronzing" or gloss differential is important to us. (Prior to the PRO-1000, we've always used dye-based printers, in part to avoid the bronzing problems with pigment-based inks.) Finally, we just don't have time to deal with clogged inkjet heads, and the PRO-1000 does better in that respect than any printer we've ever used. If you don't run them every day or two, inkjet printers tend to clog. Canon's thermal-inkjet technology is inherently less clog-prone than other approaches, but the PRO-1000 takes this a step further, with sensors that monitor every inkjet nozzle. If one clogs, it will assign another to take over its duties. In exchange for a tiny amount of print speed, this lets you defer cleaning cycles, which translates into significant ink savings. In our normal workflow, we'll often crank out a hundred or more letter-size prints in a session, but then leave the printer to sit for anywhere from days to weeks before the next camera comes along. In over a year of use, we've never had to run a nozzle-cleaning cycle on our PRO-1000.

See our Canon PRO-1000 review for a full overview of the printer from the viewpoint of a fine-art photographer.

*Disclosure: Canon provided us with the PRO-1000 and a supply of ink to use in our testing, and we receive advertising consideration for including this mention when we talk about camera print quality. Our decision to use the PRO-1000 was driven by the printer itself, though, prior to any discussion with Canon on the topic. (We'd actually been using an old Pixma PRO 9500II dye-based printer for years previously, and paying for our own ink, until we decided that the PRO-1000 was the next-generation printer we'd been waiting for.)

 



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