Buttons and Dials:
Buttons and Dials:
Well, honestly, it's a beast of a camera in all its glory, but it's a tad small for my liking. I don't have very large hands by any stretch of the imagination, but it really feels like I'm continually searching for a bit more grip. The front part where your fingers wrap around doesn't come out far enough for my liking. A similar problem is found in the back. The thumb grip usually found directly under the rear command dial seems to be...well..insignificant, to say the least. It's not a major problem, but I can see it becoming a problem in colder conditions where you cant always judge the best via the sense of touch. Make sure the strap is wrapped around your wrist a couple times just in case. It seems pretty easy to slip off.
Speaking of the command dials, they seem to have gotten an improvement as well. They're nice and rubbery; almost robust feeling. There's nothing loose about them, either. They seem to be dampened in the way they move and click into place, which I personally really like. The clicks while turning don't seem to be so much like clicks, but moreso like dampened stern stops, with very little noise or play, if that makes any sense. There's absolutely nothing plasticky or playable about them. They really do feel great.
The Fn and Aperture Preview buttons are greatly improved. I'm not sure how they are on the D7000 or any newer DSLRs (aside from the D300s), but both buttons are no longer rounded! They've got a nice plateau-like flat top on them now, which makes them very easy to discern from one another, and very easy to press, should you choose to. This is a big plus for me, as I really hated the round feel to the ones on the D300s (they're still circular, but no longer globular).
The movie record button being on the top by the MODE button is nice. I'd much prefer it being there instead of on the back. Also, like some are saying, the button's small. It's about 1/2 the diameter as the MODE buttn. Although, contrary to the other gripes, I really don't see how it's hard to reach at all. The MODE button is further away than the record button, and it's not in an awkward place at all. I don't see any problem with the placement, size, or functionality of the button.
The buttons on the back have all gotten a change as well. They're no longer globular in style either. They now have a nice, less rounded top to them as well. Whereas they felt a bit like they sank into a pocket, or into the camera a bit, the buttons on the back of this bad boy are more like click-style buttons. They move very little when you press them, and come to a hard stop shortly after pressing down. I'm not sure if I care too much for this just yet, but I can't see it becoming too much of a problem. The buttons on the left side of the newly large 3.2" screen seem to have gotten smaller as well. This isn't something I've measured, but they definitely feel smaller to the touch. A good thing, though, is that they're much more distinguished now. The space in which they sit now gradually falls down below the level of the button from the outside in. That is, the body of the camera dips down around the edges of the buttons. This leaves a VERY little bit of space around each button that emphasizes them just enough to really notice a difference as to how pronounced they are. I think this is a great improvement.
The mode wheel (S, CL, CH, etc) has been greatly improved as well. It's not raised so you can see the letters for each mode from the back of the camera. You no longer have to look downward to see them. It's much more rubberized now instead of metally/plasticky and has the same damped, almost insulated-like stop-click motion between modes as the command dials do between clicks. Huge improvement. Very welcomed improvement indeed.
The screen is now 3.2" instead of 3" and really is big, bright, and beautiful. 'Nuff said.
The viewfinder is big, bright, and beautiful as well. The addition of the leveler is nice. Other than that, I don't see much of a difference.
All I can really say so far is that the AF is incredibly fast and responsive. I haven't tested the continuous focus in video mode, but it's great in the photos. Dead on each and every time, and has no problem tracking fast objects. But, that's to be expected in a camera with a flagship AF system.
More to come including test photos and videos tomorrow! Stay tuned!