When the Dynax 7D was launched, there was no denying the effectiveness of Konica
Minolta's unique Anti-Shake technology. Unfortunately this capability came at
a price, with the 7D initially costing the same as Canon's higher resolution and
Of course the 20D didn't come with built-in anti-shake, but for the price of the
7D body alone you could alternatively buy a budget digital SLR sporting the same
resolution and still have enough remaining to buy an image stabilised lens. The
fact there weren't any budget wide zooms to go with the 7D further increased its
cost of entry for anyone without existing Dynax lenses.
Today though the situation's changed: Konica Minolta's reduced the price of the
7D, launched three new affordable lenses designed for the smaller sensor size,
and most importantly of all, released the Dynax 5D.
Judged on resolution, basic features and price alone, the Dynax 5D is already
comparable to its immediate rivals. At this point you'd normally weigh-up looks,
handling and specific features where one may be preferred over another to make
a decision, but the 5D of course has one very important advantage: built-in Anti-Shake.
The 5D's built-in Anti-Shake is a truly valuable feature which genuinely works.
Like similar technologies it won't perform miracles, but you really are looking
at a two to three stop advantage when handholding. This allows you to handhold
shots at exposures two to three times slower than normal, thereby allowing you
to shoot under dimmer conditions without worrying about camera shake or being
forced to increase the ISO and compromise quality. The fact you get this built-in
for roughly the same price as rival budget digital SLRs is remarkable. The bundled
18-70mm lens also has a longer and more useful range than the usual 18-55mm lenses
bundled with its rivals.
It's not all good news though: the screen may be a generous size at 2.5in, but
its resolution is way too low for these dimensions. So while it may match the
actual detail of some smaller screens, the images on it look quite coarse in comparison.
The body is also heavier and, to our eyes, the design less slick than its rivals,
which may or may not be an issue depending on personal taste. The bundled lens
we tested was additionally softer than its rivals in the corners with the aperture
Ultimately you have to weigh up the pros and cons for yourself. Compared to its
rivals, the Pentax *istDL has a far superior high resolution 2.5in screen, the
Nikon D50's handling and build quality is exemplary for the price, and of course
the Canon 350D still boasts the highest resolution of the pack. None of them have
built-in Anti-Shake nor come optionally bundled with an 18-70mm lens though, which
at the Dynax 5D's price makes it one of the most compelling budget digital SLRs
on the market. It's Highly Recommended.
Please visit our Budget DSLR Buyer's Guide
for an update of the best buys around right now.
Unique and effective built-in Anti Shake
18-70mm kit lens longer than the usual 55mm
Large 2.5in display
Screen information stays upright as body rotated
Screen looks coarse (resolution too low for 2.5in)
Kit lens soft in corners when open at wide angle
Relatively heavy compared to rivals
Can't see Anti Shake working while composing
(relative to budget DSLRs)
14 / 20
14 / 20
16 / 20
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