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04-05-2010, 03:23 AM   #1
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DPReview new score system overview

I've seen several threads in this forum about reranking of K-7 and K-x. Maybe, it is a good idea to list available rankings to avoid much of the confusion.

1. About the new rating system: Scores and Ratings: Guides: Learn: Digital Photography Review

E.g., the JPG image quality plays an important role besides RAW image quality. DPReview plans to allow for different weighting matrices or even a personal one.

Most specifically, there are 4 SLR categories and %-ratings do NOT apply to another category. So please, do NOT compare the %-ratings between cameras in different categories!

The %-scale shall be interpreted as follows:
51- 60% At best average, treat with caution
61-70% Average to Good
71-80% Very Good to Excellent
Over 80%: Outstanding

Plus a camera can receive a "Silver" or "Gold" award not directly linked to a %-rating.


2. Cameras tested in 2009 have been reranked. Note that the weighting matrix contain video and value, i.e., the market price, although with a low weight only.



3. Here comes my list of cameras (re-)ranked using the new system. The %-ranking is in front of every line.


3.1 Entry-level SLRs:

57% Ricoh GRX/S10 24-72mm VC
59% (Recommended (with reservations)) Sony Alpha 380
65% (Recommended (Just)) Pentax K-m
72% Nikon D3000


3.2 Mid Range SLRs:

66% (Highly Recommended) Olympus E-P1
69% (Highly Recommended) Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1
69% Samsung NX10
69% (Silver) Olympus E-P2
70% (Recommended) Sony Alpha 550
70% (Highly Recommended) Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1
71% (Highly Recommended) Olympus E-30
72% (Highly Recommended) Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1
72% (Highly Recommended) Olympus E-620
73% (Highly Recommended) Pentax K-x
74% (Highly Recommended) Canon EOS 500D
75% (Highly Recommended) Nikon D5000
77% (Gold) Canon EOS 550D

3.3 Semi-Pro SLRs:

74% (Highly Recommended) Pentax K-7
75% Sony Alpha 850
79% (Highly Recommended) Canon EOS 5D Mark II
82% (Highly Recommended) Nikon D300S
84% (Highly Recommended) Canon EOS 7D

3.4 Professional SLRs:

86% (Highly Recommended) Nikon D3x
89% (Gold) Nikon D3S


4. Example comparison D300S vs. K-7:

As an example, I have compared the D300S and K-7, both in the Semi-Pro category (cf. attachment). In the attached graphic, advantages for D300S are green, advantages for K-7 are red (only in the 'Value' slider). D300S scores 82% vs. 74% for the K-7.

One big aspect is low light performance. But looking at Nikon D300S Review: 15. Photographic tests (Noise): Digital Photography Review we would learn that gray and chroma noise are about equal in RAW and black noise is better for D300S. Overall, not a factor 2. I.e., the low light performance slider is hidden extra weight for JPG image perfomance (with Pentax).


Last edited by falconeye; 06-15-2011 at 05:29 AM.
04-05-2010, 04:48 AM   #2
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The new system is a convenient way for DPR to be able to give those compulsory extra points of differentation to Canon and Nikon, i.e. where the money comes from. In the old system it wasn't easy to make C and N stand out as other makes were also increasingly often gaining the highly recommended mark.
04-05-2010, 04:59 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Boucicaut Quote
The new system is a convenient way for DPR to be able to give those compulsory extra points of differentation to Canon and Nikon
To compile my post was hard work.
So please, can you refrain from spamming my thread with dumb conspiracy theory remarks? Thank You.
04-05-2010, 05:22 AM   #4
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Nice work on the list.

Good to see that DP Review hasn't succumbed to score inflation.

04-05-2010, 05:25 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
So please, can you refrain from spamming my thread with dumb conspiracy theory remarks? Thank You.
Nice attitude, Falk.
04-05-2010, 05:29 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
To compile my post was hard work.
So please, can you refrain from spamming my thread with dumb conspiracy theory remarks? Thank You.
If you are going to start a thread about dpreview, wouldn't you expect the worst from people? (not a knock at Bou, just a general statement that dpreview inspires strong, negative opinions) At the same time, I am surprised at your own vitriolic retort to Bou's comments as they are pretty commonly held opinions around dpreview (and not entirely without merit).
04-05-2010, 05:46 AM   #7
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Not that important

The real value of the reviews at DPReview are the breath and depth of the coverage. All photographers have different wants and needs for their equipment. The % figures would indicate very little difference between an Olympus E-620, Pentax K-x, and Nikon D5000. Actually, depending on what you want from your camera and how you use it, there are huge differences. DPReview helped me select the K-x because the camera matched my needs and the compromises are in areas that weren't that important to me. I would hope that the new ratings will encourage people to read the entire reviews of cameras they might consider and not put a lot of importance on the one number.
04-05-2010, 06:02 AM   #8
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Marv,

I agree they are a great resource for in-depth reviews - that is the most frustrating thing about them bothering with final verdicts - despite their honest discussion within the review pages, the final conclusions always favor the big 2. For all the enthusiasts (like us) that doesn't matter.

I think what gets under the Pentax forum's skin over on that site, is that Pentax always does well in the body of the review, then gets slighted in the conclusions and scoring. Since dpreview is the defacto largest review site, new visitors might not take the time to read full reviews, and jump to the conclusions page, and not get the full picture in the process.

04-05-2010, 06:18 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marv Toler Quote
I would hope that the new ratings will encourage people to read the entire reviews of cameras they might consider and not put a lot of importance on the one number.
I relied on DPR when doing my analysis leading to buying my K20D two years ago. But I didn't rely on just the tech ratings -- I looked closely at USER ratings, at which makes and models had the most gripes. For the money, Pentax got the fewest complaints, and the fewest comments about desiring to upgrade. And more important, Pentax had the lenses that did what I wanted, that I could afford. I had to look at the entire price-performance package.

Many of the What-Lens-Should-I-Get questions here and on other-brand forums obviously come from people who ONLY read the camera ratings, who don't think about what they want to photograph and how and with what, etc. Ratings and recommendations are scanned, a camera (their first dSLR) with kit lens is bought, and then it's OMFG WHAT NOW?? Maybe they've shot a P&S and they're used to extreme DOF and easy shooting, and their new expensive toy just doesn't deliver. OMFG GOTTA BUY MORE GLASS!!! They didn't look far enough. The camera is important, but it's really just a box upon which to hang lenses. If they don't research what lens(es) will produce the images they want, they're stuck. They've got a highly-rated paperweight.

That's where I fault DPR's camera ratings. The viewpoint is too narrow. Maybe that's inevitable. But it leads to much angst.
04-05-2010, 06:24 AM   #10
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The proof will be in the pudding. If the new rating system encourages people to read the in-depth reviews, it will be a positive step. For instance, if I see that a Pentax K-x is only 1 point behind the Nikon D5000 and I'm price sensitive, I would be very interested in reading the entire Pentax review. However, if I already had a Nikon or Canon bias, the points would just reinforce my views. The new rating system could cut both ways.
04-05-2010, 06:30 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marv Toler Quote
The proof will be in the pudding. If the new rating system encourages people to read the in-depth reviews, it will be a positive step. For instance, if I see that a Pentax K-x is only 1 point behind the Nikon D5000 and I'm price sensitive, I would be very interested in reading the entire Pentax review. However, if I already had a Nikon or Canon bias, the points would just reinforce my views. The new rating system could cut both ways.
That is definitely true. I found it extremely amusing to read through the T2i review - going through comparisons to the 500d, the d5000 and the K-x. Then the side-by-side feature comparison page comes around and the K-x was strangely absent (as some people on dpreview have rightfully pointed out, you can buy a K-x and nice prime for the cost of the T2i). It is stuff like that which sets off the forum over there, with good reason I believe.
04-05-2010, 06:51 AM   #12
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I definitely don't think you can summarize a fifteen page review into a single number. Things that are improtant to the reviewer often are of minimal importance to me, whereas things that are glossed over (weather sealing?) are much more important to me.

As others have said, modern dSLRs are all good and you can take good photos with any of them. the question is more which set of features/ strengths matches up with the photographer, rather than does one camera get a 77 percent and another a 74 percent.

PS. Thanks Falconeye for putting this together.
04-05-2010, 06:54 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
To compile my post was hard work.
So please, can you refrain from spamming my thread with dumb conspiracy theory remarks? Thank You.
Nice first post, but the forum remains a free place of communication
04-05-2010, 07:05 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by soalle Quote
Nice first post, but the forum remains a free place of communication
First post? Yes it is a free place of communication and he communicated his desire that a post that he obviously put a great deal of work into be kept on track.

EDIT: This isn't Pentax news or rumor so I'm moving it to General Talk.

Last edited by Parallax; 04-05-2010 at 08:36 AM.
04-05-2010, 07:17 AM   #15
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Wow. That is a seriously admirable job. Great work.

I hadn't done much comparison before I made my posts about this in the K-x and K-7 thread; I only saw that the D300 was 84% and figured the low 70s of the Pentax's was DPR favoritism again. I see from your work some other cameras that had gotten a 'Highly Recommended' fared much worse w/this new system, scoring in the 60's.

I guess it comes down to us needing to re-calibrate our thinking. It's worth noting, the 'old' system DPR used had all the ratings clumped near the top 90% of the scale. It makes sense to spread the scale out more. That requires however that we all throw-away our pre-conceived notions that wants to relate the number grades DPR is now using to the A,B,C,D,F grading system. If I force myself to not think in those terms, it's much easier to accept.
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