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Nikon announces the D800


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#21 PeteAtkinson

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 04:25 PM

I think Thom Hogan was talking about downsampling rather than useful ISO in DX crop mode. To quote Thom:

"Assuming my assumption that downsampling to 12mp gives me a reasonable ISO 3200,"

In DX crop mode I am guessing ISO performance might be not much better than the D7000.

#22 Undertow

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 06:01 PM

I am more excited about the 1.2x 25mp crop mode; sounds very interesting for lenses that have soft corner problems.


indeed, but none of the "crop modes" really matter cause that's all they are, digital crops. something we can all easily do in post.

i.e. for those that would ponder 15mp with the tokina 10-17mm, why not just leave it in FX mode and crop as needed. its the same thing the camera's doing except you get all the extra data.

A DX lens' image circle is still larger than a DX sensor and DX zooms often will have a partial range that will fully cover an FX sensor. granted it could be crap in the corners but i have seen it work. my tokina 11-16mm was quite decent at 16mm on my D700, before I got a full frame superwide.
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#23 davephdv

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 07:07 PM

Nikon claims that it is smaller ... shape wise I think it is looking similar to a D300s anyone else sharing the same thought?


The preview states "It is clearly beefier than the D300s in all dimensions."
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#24 ATJ

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 07:08 PM

i.e. for those that would ponder 15mp with the tokina 10-17mm, why not just leave it in FX mode and crop as needed. its the same thing the camera's doing except you get all the extra data.

I guess the difference is that with the camera doing the crop, I assume you will see the crop in the viewfinder. Doing it in post means you have to allow the right amount of border in the viewfinder. This could be important when trying to reduce soft corners.

#25 johnspierce

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 07:17 PM

indeed, but none of the "crop modes" really matter cause that's all they are, digital crops. something we can all easily do in post.

i.e. for those that would ponder 15mp with the tokina 10-17mm, why not just leave it in FX mode and crop as needed. its the same thing the camera's doing except you get all the extra data.

A DX lens' image circle is still larger than a DX sensor and DX zooms often will have a partial range that will fully cover an FX sensor. granted it could be crap in the corners but i have seen it work. my tokina 11-16mm was quite decent at 16mm on my D700, before I got a full frame superwide.


You make some good points, but I see two reasons why using the in-camera crop mode might be advantageous with the Tokina 10-17mm DX lens:

1) If it works like the D700, the area outside of the copped rectangle would be darkened in the viewfinder making photo composition easier
2) The image recorded on the card will be 15mp, not 36mp and yes you can crop in post, but it will waste a lot of disk space. There would be next to no useful data in the vignetted part of the image anyway.

But my real question is whether this would be as good as owning a DX for U/W and FX for above water. For me, I prefer DX for extra reach in U/W macro photography and DX with the 10-17 is pretty awesome as is. I suspect it will still be better to own both. The D800 does look pretty darn incredible.

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Edited by johnspierce, 07 February 2012 - 07:18 PM.

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#26 wthurman

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 10:14 PM

D3X owners must hate the D800 - more resolution, video, latest AF and smaller, much cheaper body
Alex


As a D3x owner, it's a blow. I knew it would happen sooner or later, but not this soon! I'm married to the big Nikon since I have an Aquatica housing for it but I'd entertain a future affair with the D800 or its successor...

#27 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 12:58 AM

Thom Hogan's preliminary take on it:
http://bythom.com/d800intro.htm


In general I would say that I tend to agree with Thom's conclusion. Although from his review I am not sure he has handled the camera - it is merely a reaction to the specs.

I started out with the attitude, 36MP who needs that. And then as the week went on and we talked about it more - we realised you don't need to use it all the time. Our poor analogy is it is like an overpowered car, you don't need to use all the power all the time. I'll stop the car analogy there - we didn't and enjoyed jokes about DX hybrid around town mode...

So as Thom Hogan says. Buy bigger cards, faster card reader and more storage and live with it.

The DX crop is very useable - and will out resolve the camera that most Nikon shooters are upgrading to the D800 from. I don't remember is you can shoot RAW at other resolutions to full res FX and full res DX, but I think you can. Alternatively you can down-res a bit in the RAW converter, should you not be happy with how 36MP looks at 1:1. I shot RAW and JPG with the camera (boy it fills cards quickly - takes CF and SD) and charged the battery on my D7000 charger.

The ergonomics of the D800 are very nice. This was a camera that I don't intend to buy (on release, at least), but trying it quickly made me want one. The (even) bigger LCD screen is lovely.

36MP is so much more than I need anyway. Still waiting to see some high ISO still samples, though video shot at night looks pretty clean


I'd like to be able to open my RAW files before commenting definitely on noise. But as a general comment both the noise and frame rate significantly exceeded what I thought would be possible with 36MP. If anyone is desperate to see files I can send you over a couple of JPGS (basic quality - I shot RAW + Basic) straight from the camera.

I presume the one I tried had the AA. In fact I was unaware Nikon were going to offer the two versions.

1) If it works like the D700, the area outside of the copped rectangle would be darkened in the viewfinder making photo composition easier
2) The image recorded on the card will be 15mp, not 36mp and yes you can crop in post, but it will waste a lot of disk space. There would be next to no useful data in the vignetted part of the image anyway.
But my real question is whether this would be as good as owning a DX for U/W and FX for above water. For me, I prefer DX for extra reach in U/W macro photography and DX with the 10-17 is pretty awesome as is.


I agree. I can see many people doing DX dives (with 10-17mm, 60mm and 105mm) or doing all their diving DX. 15MP (is that what it is?) is still a lot of resolution. Although I think it will need a change in mindset to purposely not use the maximum resolution your camera is capable of. 7360 x 4912 is an addictive amount of pixels!

The prototype I tried did not shade the viewfinder in DX mode. Simple illuminated a red rectangle around the DX section of the frame. But this may well have been included in firmware changes for the release spec.

Alex

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#28 Rocha

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 07:46 AM

That is great info Alex, thanks! How is the AF compared to the D2x and D700?

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#29 johnspierce

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 08:21 AM

The prototype I tried did not shade the viewfinder in DX mode. Simple illuminated a red rectangle around the DX section of the frame. But this may well have been included in firmware changes for the release spec.

Alex



If it's like the D700 there is a custom menu option for either a rectangle or a shaded section in DX mode, rectangle being the default. I'd like to try one out and see how much of a problem losing part of your "view" is for composing a photo.

I keep reading rave reviews from Pros who have been using the D800 under NDA for a few months. Wish they would stop :(

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#30 Geopadi

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 10:14 AM

Hi,
I ordered the D800E yesterday as I don't think moire will be a problem with any striped fish I can think of at this resolution but I can think of plenty lenses that will be soft! The girl in the Kimono studio lite shot on Nikon site is of very fine regular weave material and the cobbled path shot had noticably better definition and depth, since nobody here seems to have first hand experience with the D800E it will be interesting to see the results underwater compared!
I just hope the housings come out quickly from Nauticam! maybe if its a problem Nikon can put an AA filter in for me!
Looking fwd to April anyway!

#31 Geopadi

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 10:41 AM

indeed, but none of the "crop modes" really matter cause that's all they are, digital crops. something we can all easily do in post.

i.e. for those that would ponder 15mp with the tokina 10-17mm, why not just leave it in FX mode and crop as needed. its the same thing the camera's doing except you get all the extra data.

A DX lens' image circle is still larger than a DX sensor and DX zooms often will have a partial range that will fully cover an FX sensor. granted it could be crap in the corners but i have seen it work. my tokina 11-16mm was quite decent at 16mm on my D700, before I got a full frame superwide.


I must say I agree with the crop in post argument - why waste data, its amazing how your composition decisions can change in post sometimes. I will be trying my Tokina 10-17 on the D800E in full FX maybe I'll like the vignetting composition!

#32 BHC

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 11:38 AM

Nikonrumors now has a link to a page with some full-res samples at high ISO (800-25400). Based on these limited data, I would say that the performance in DX crop mode will not be competitive with the D7000.

I wonder about the utility of FX for underwater shooting. For macro, I use the Tamron 90 or Nikon 105 on a DX body. So to get the same composition in FX, one would need to either use a 150 mm or longer lens, or get 33% closer to the fish. Either way, the whole business becomes more challenging.

#33 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 05:41 AM

That is great info Alex, thanks! How is the AF compared to the D2x and D700?


It compares favourably, but I would like to wait to try it underwater (with subjects that I am familiar with and in the conditions we all use the camera in) before saying anything definitive. The low light performance suggests it will be a step on again underwater. But I'll only know by trying it.

The reality is that it will be the D4 that gets a workout first. Although I am sure the D800 will appeal much more widely to underwater photographers than the D4, the D4 will be out first and housings for that will be with us first.

Alex

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#34 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 05:46 AM

I ordered the D800E yesterday as I don't think moire will be a problem with any striped fish I can think of at this resolution but I can think of plenty lenses that will be soft!


I don't think that this is a camera to use with cheap lenses - apart from the Tokina - which is always pretty nasty - but we always tend to forgive it!
I used 70-200 and 16-35mm mainly - and both performed well. Although I doubt 36MP is going to look pixel perfect at 100% behind a dome. That said - it will probably look great down rezzed to a mere 24MP.

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#35 Geopadi

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 07:18 AM

I don't think that this is a camera to use with cheap lenses - apart from the Tokina - which is always pretty nasty - but we always tend to forgive it!
I used 70-200 and 16-35mm mainly - and both performed well. Although I doubt 36MP is going to look pixel perfect at 100% behind a dome. That said - it will probably look great down rezzed to a mere 24MP.

Alex


Alex
I agree absolutely and intend to use it with my Nikon 14 -24mm which until now has been stuck on my D90 above water and not exactly what it was designed for! I went for the D800E for precisely the dome reason you site as I feel there are plenty of AA properties in it already (so to speak) and therefore the prospect of a single ray of white light hitting only one of the RGB groups is even less likely.
It will still be fun to bolt the old Tokina 10-17 on to see what I get, like most everyone I love that lense and DXO takes the Chromatic Aberation out nicely.
This will be my first FX camera as it were, before we used to called them 35mm! back in my Pentax MX days.

Thanks for your insightful posts I always read them!

George

#36 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 07:33 AM

I think the 16-35mm is a better performer underwater for FX (which is why I have one), than the 14-24mm. 14-24mm better on land.

Alex

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#37 Don in Colorado

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 07:35 AM

Imaging-resource.com tries to explain the difference between the D800 and D800e...

http://www.imaging-r...nikon-d800A.HTM

#38 Geopadi

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 08:21 AM

I think the 16-35mm is a better performer underwater for FX (which is why I have one), than the 14-24mm. 14-24mm better on land.

Alex


Right - well its on the shopping list then! thanks again. Are Subal making (or have made) a dome specially for it as they did for the 14 24mm

George

#39 Geopadi

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 08:45 AM

Imaging-resource.com tries to explain the difference between the D800 and D800e...

http://www.imaging-r...nikon-d800A.HTM


Thanks for the link, I found it somewhat comforting, but having digested it, I think I may be off the mark a little with my dome theory :(

George

#40 Undertow

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 11:39 AM

I wonder about the utility of FX for underwater shooting. For macro, I use the Tamron 90 or Nikon 105 on a DX body. So to get the same composition in FX, one would need to either use a 150 mm or longer lens, or get 33% closer to the fish. Either way, the whole business becomes more challenging.


This simply won't be true anymore when a FX sensor has a DX crop with the same resolution as a DX body. The D800 has essentially the same pixel density of the D7000. So a 100mm lens on a D800 in DX crop mode will be more or less exactly the same as that lens on a D7000. The only difference is that you'll be throwing away more image captured around the outside. This is extra sensor using extra glass.

So shoot a 100mm macro on the D800 if FX mode and crop it down in post to the size of a DX sensor and you'll have the same image as shot with the 100mm on a D7000.

Of course, once nikon releases a DX camera with a higher resolution (i.e. say the D400 is 20-24mp) then perhaps we can start thinking about this again. But the game changer with the D800 is that is has plenty of resolution (at today's standards) when cropped to the size of DX sensor that it practically makes any DX camera less than 16mp obsolete. Except for perhaps the slow 4fps when shooting action.

The only other way this distinction could play out is in the "Traditional" category of the OWU photo contest where cropping is not allowed...
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