So, I can get a pretty good deal on either the D610 (for USD 1,370) and the D7100 (for USD 780). I’m so tempted to go full frame, but the cost difference is huge. The D610 body itself costs 75% more than the D7100 and I’ve not even taken into consideration the new lenses that I’ll need.
I understand the advantages of full frame but I also feel like they’re really minor:
Wide angle lenses
I just don’t shoot that wide very often. 99% of my shots are taken at 35mm or 50mm. If I do need to go wide, I find that the wide end of my 17-50mm f/2.8 to be sufficient (just needs to some distortion correction in post processing).
Shallower depth of field
Using my f/2.8 zoom and my f/1.8 prime lenses, I’ve never had an issue with DOF not being shallow enough. If anything, I often want wider depth of field.
About 1-stop better ISO performance
I’ve been very happy with the ISO performance of my D5100. ISO 6400 gives me noise-free 4x6 prints and I consciously try to never breach ISO 3200. Considering that not many years ago ISO only went as high as 800, I think better technique will more than make up for this point.
Better dynamic range and color depth
If I’m being honest, I can’t tell the difference.
On the other hand, it seems to me that the D7100 has some significant advantages over the D610:
Higher resolution screen
Better AF system with more AF points and better coverage
Smaller & lighter
Max shutter speed of 1/8000 compared to 1/4000 for the D610
Costs about 40% less
So I don’t know. I’ve always felt that I would eventually upgrade to full frame, but cameras like the D7100 are making me think that there’s not really a good reason to bear the cost of a full frame system unless I do photography for a living.
Anyone here who went from a APS-C body to a full frame have any thoughts on this? I feel like I’m missing something in my analysis. There HAS to be a reason for that huge price difference, right? Or is it really just the cost of manufacturing?