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Craig Ruaux

Hooo-eeee! The D3X price has been announced

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Browsing through some of the sites now starting to pop up with photographs taken the D3x. Pretty impressive when you view the crops.

As for pixels vs high ISO. Clearly for most of us, most of the time, all of these awesome new cameras, are significantly more than we need with regard to pixel count. For all the images we post on the web, and most of our prints, all the DX and FX cameras out there have more than enough pixels. Obviously those who either like to crop, or who require large prints more pixels is better, and this new camera appears to be king of the hill in this respect.

As for high ISO, topside it has made a huge difference to what I can shoot, and really expanded the photographic options, much more than any increase in pixel count. Underwater, being able to shoot higher than ISO 400 without penalty would be routinely useful if only to get an extra stop or two out of the lens. As for 1600 and above maybe not useful all that often, but I can imagine scenarios where it would be. So for most of us having high ISO ability, if we are creative or have the need like Warren, should create more possibilities than high pixel count. I have yet to get my D700 underwater, but topside it has changed the way I shoot. Probably Canon 5D shooters discovered this a while back.

With the 5D MkII one has high pixel count and apparently similar ISO performance to the D700 so if I were buying a new system, this camera would appear to be a no brainer at the moment.... unless of course you needed 24.5 MP

 

http://www.studioimpressionsphotography.co...-sample-images/

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More and more I'm hearing that the sensor in the D3x is similar to the Sony A900's sensor but with a different filter pack and microlenes perhaps. What I don't understand is how Nikon can charge $5,000 more than Sony - who can sell the whole camera for $3,000. Nikon apparently wants an additional $3,000 (over the D3) just for the improved sensor.

 

Cheers

James

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What I don't understand is how Nikon can charge $5,000 more than Sony

 

Thinking they can get $5K more and actually getting it maybe two different things, is anyone taking money, and if they are is it more than a deposit?

 

If they manage to gouge a load of punters and then drop the sticker price by $5k then the fur is going to fly!

 

Paul C

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I agree, the price seems excessive. I have started looking into updating my D2x, but I think I will keep it at least until Nikon comes up with a D700x or something along the lines of the 5DII, compact, high resolution FX sensor below $5k.

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More and more I'm hearing that the sensor in the D3x is similar to the Sony A900's sensor but with a different filter pack and microlenes perhaps. What I don't understand is how Nikon can charge $5,000 more than Sony - who can sell the whole camera for $3,000. Nikon apparently wants an additional $3,000 (over the D3) just for the improved sensor.

 

Cheers

James

 

Sony a900 is a lower class camera but the 5000 prize difference is not justified IMHO and also the 3000 prize premium over the D3 is strange.

For UW purpose I think a900 is a better camera (smaller, has in-body shake reduction, also for 50mm macro and wide-angle) but there is not a single UW-housing available (or planned).

From the prize difference you can easily buy the premium glass you need.

It's different when you already have a D3 housing. But I would never take a $8000 camera underwater. (I have to admit, even a900 is out of my range)

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....and I saw a side-by-side comparison of pictures from the two sensors (a900 and D3X). No doubt, they are based on the same sony sensor.

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More and more I'm hearing that the sensor in the D3x is similar to the Sony A900's sensor but with a different filter pack and microlenes perhaps. What I don't understand is how Nikon can charge $5,000 more than Sony - who can sell the whole camera for $3,000. Nikon apparently wants an additional $3,000 (over the D3) just for the improved sensor.

 

Cheers

James

James, you can use the same argument for Canon 1DSMKIII vs it's own 5DMkII, clearly both companies are targeting these top end cameras to professionals who are prepared to spend the money for the 'very best' that money can buy. Clearly the D3x is placed to compete with the 1DSMkIII

Edited by loftus

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Being the one that started the thread, I suppose me coming along and making this observation smacks of irony ;)

 

Say you are working photographer and take 4 weeks vacation a year, never working weekends. You'll have about 240 potential work days a year, assuming you don't have sick time.

 

If you can generate ~$35.00 a day extra income due to the 24.5 MPix vs everyone else, you've paid for the body in one year.

 

As a hobbyist, I look at the price tag of the D3x and gag a little.

 

Then I go to work and look at our $11,000 freezers, $100,000 endoscope tower, $200,000 diagnostic ultrasound machine, my wife's ~$250,000 rehabilitation facility (not to mention the $55,000 pressure mat system and all the fricking computers) and our $1MILL CT with an operator who costs $66K/yr before benefits, and I think pro photographers actually have it pretty easy, from a necessary capital perspective.

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All those underwater shooters like you, Warren, who require > ISO 1600 should be happy that Nikon served you first. The D3 still exists.

 

Had it not been for the revolutionary improvement in high ISO performance of the D3, I'd still be shooting my D200. Although, I don't shoot the D3 much higher than ISO 1000 underwater, still the cleaner images I am getting from ISO range up to ISO 1000 is a vast improvement over the D200, which I rarely felt comfortable shooting over ISO 400. The problem with exceeding ISO 1000 is that the minimum strobe setting starts to become too strong. But for the ISO range from 400 to 1000, I utilize this range routinely without giving it a second thought.

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James, you can use the same argument for Canon 1DSMKIII vs it's own 5DMkII, clearly both companies are targeting these top end cameras to professionals who are prepared to spend the money for the 'very best' that money can buy. Clearly the D3x is placed to compete with the 1DSMkIII

Remember that the 5D Mark II is releasing over a year after the 1Ds Mark III was introduced - a time when thoughts of the 5D II were internet conjecture, smoke and mirror rumors. And at $2699 (with an improved sensor no less!), it's causing a downturn in the prices of the 1Ds, as more people are moving to buy the 5D II than the 1Ds III. The 5D II is an excellent bargain, with the downfalls of slow AF speed, longer mirror blackout, and similar.

 

If the D3x were released within a few months of the 1Ds III, would we be having this discussion? Unlikely. But introduction at the same price point over a year later is alarming...

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Remember that the 5D Mark II is releasing over a year after the 1Ds Mark III was introduced - a time when thoughts of the 5D II were internet conjecture, smoke and mirror rumors. And at $2699 (with an improved sensor no less!), it's causing a downturn in the prices of the 1Ds, as more people are moving to buy the 5D II than the 1Ds III. The 5D II is an excellent bargain, with the downfalls of slow AF speed, longer mirror blackout, and similar.

 

If the D3x were released within a few months of the 1Ds III, would we be having this discussion? Unlikely. But introduction at the same price point over a year later is alarming...

I think it all depends on whether in the final analysis, the D3x turns out to produce better images (even marginally) than the Sony, 1DSMkIII and/or the 5DmKII or not. If it does, then this camera will appeal to those high end pros who already own Nikon or for whom every last pixel, short of full medium frame, counts. If it turns out that image quality is not demonstrably better than the Sony or Canon, then I think this will be the beginning of the end of Nikon, because they've obviously invested heavily in catching up to Canon, which they have now effectively done.

I can't expect Nikon expected to sell a high volume of these cameras, but if one looks at the D3 and D3x, Nikon can still argue that they have the best top of the line professional sports / street camera in the D3, and now the best studio 35mm size sensor camera in the D3x. All of Canon's present cameras are great, but probably none can claim to be the single best camera at any one thing, now that the D3 is on the market for low noise and speed, and the D3x for resolution. Remember Nikon is also trying to position this camera as a potential replacement for medium format cameras, by which standards this camera is cheap.

Whether they can pull this all off remains to be seen, and I give them 50/50 at best.

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US$ 8000,00 for a top of the line camera and they could't even put a sensor cleaning device???

The 1Ds MK3 is selling for US$ 6700 (BH photo). So a D3x, almost a year later, costing US$ 8000,00? Yes i think it is overpriced, specially when compared to the D3 (same camera) ou 5DmkII ou A900 (similar resolution).

Unless it has a huge image quality advantadge over the competition, it will be hard to justify the price tag. At least for me...

 

Best Regards,

 

Marcelo Krause

www.marcelokrause.com

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US$ 8000,00 for a top of the line camera and they could't even put a sensor cleaning device???

The 1Ds MK3 is selling for US$ 6700 (BH photo). So a D3x, almost a year later, costing US$ 8000,00? Yes i think it is overpriced, specially when compared to the D3 (same camera) ou 5DmkII ou A900 (similar resolution).

Unless it has a huge image quality advantadge over the competition, it will be hard to justify the price tag. At least for me...

 

Best Regards,

 

Marcelo Krause

www.marcelokrause.com

 

I tend to agree the $8000 price tag is overdoing it, and based on the reactions of people on the photography based forums I belong to, many others feel the same. However, there will be quite a few who will buy the camera regardless as it is something they need for the work they are doing. But I suspect once the initial flurry of early adopters wanes, the market will cause the price to adjust accordingly. So unless you really need it, it may pay to wait on this one if you really want to pick one up.

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Had it not been for the revolutionary improvement in high ISO performance of the D3, I'd still be shooting my D200. Although, I don't shoot the D3 much higher than ISO 1000 underwater, still the cleaner images I am getting from ISO range up to ISO 1000 is a vast improvement over the D200, which I rarely felt comfortable shooting over ISO 400. The problem with exceeding ISO 1000 is that the minimum strobe setting starts to become too strong. But for the ISO range from 400 to 1000, I utilize this range routinely without giving it a second thought.

The D3x is likely to produce acceptable results in that ISO range. As a bonus, it's base ISO of 100 is better for sunball shooting. I prefer the D3x ISO range for underwater.

 

Recent RAW testing has shown that the 5D2 is not substantially better at high ISO than the 1Ds3 and neither matches the D3/D700. Other than Canon propaganda, I don't know why people expected otherwise. Canon made the ISO controls of the 5D2 and 50D go to 11.

 

The D3x sensor is apparently based on the Sony sensor but it has 14 bit ADCs in addition to different stuff stacked on top. I'm not sure why anyone cares other than curiosity. It's a sensor unique to Nikon.

 

People may not have liked the 1Ds3 price but there was never so much complaining about it. The biggest difference is that Canon priced their product in a market without competition. Canon's 1Ds3 price is still $8K, not 6700, so it's the same as the new D3x. After the early adopters spend their money, dealer discounting will kick in.

 

I don't know why people want to compare the D3x to the A900 regarding price. There's a lot more to a camera than just a sensor and the D3x is a different class of body.

 

I agree that the price is disappointing but what we really want underwater is the small body version anyway. Hopefully Nikon will bring that out soon. Let's hope for really good sensor yields.

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Sounds like price skimming to me. Watch as those pro Nikon shooters that have to have the best of the best start purchasing the new model, then the price will drop to bring it in line with the competition, giving Nikon the chance to compete more realistically. Makes sense to me though, Nikon ensures premium prices at the moment, ensuring maximum profit.

 

Just my 2c worth, but it's what I'd be doing too (and have done in the past in other industries).

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Sounds like price skimming to me.

 

Not necessarily.

 

Let's hope for really good sensor yields

 

And there is the kicker - if the fab yields can be made good then this sensor will propagate right through the pack - eventually.

 

If it can't (and its not a job I would relish) then this will remain an expensive option.

 

Paul C

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From what I gather the 5DMkII is arousing a GREAT deal of interest. Its spec. & price are very acceptable. Some people will/can pay prices like the D3X's predicted one, but that given the differences are not earth shattering, I'd say that Canon has a potential winner in the 5D MkII. To be absolutely honest, I see little absolute gain in a D3X over a 5DII for the VAST majority of users. Certainly underwater the D3X has the main advantage of an existing Nikon orientated user base. If you think about it anything over 10MPixel is as good as if not better than 35mm (IMHO based on numerous comparable images that I've taken) then any application or usage which 35mm would have fulfilled can now be dealt with by a 10MPixel camera - so for many usages 24MPixel is irrelevant and for underwater images, quality will still be limited by the optics in any case!

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From what I gather the 5DMkII is arousing a GREAT deal of interest. Its spec. & price are very acceptable. Some people will/can pay prices like the D3X's predicted one, but that given the differences are not earth shattering, I'd say that Canon has a potential winner in the 5D MkII. To be absolutely honest, I see little absolute gain in a D3X over a 5DII for the VAST majority of users. Certainly underwater the D3X has the main advantage of an existing Nikon orientated user base. If you think about it anything over 10MPixel is as good as if not better than 35mm (IMHO based on numerous comparable images that I've taken) then any application or usage which 35mm would have fulfilled can now be dealt with by a 10MPixel camera - so for many usages 24MPixel is irrelevant and for underwater images, quality will still be limited by the optics in any case!

 

This is true for people like myself looking into the possibility of going full frame from DX. 3/4 of my lenses are now DX only. I would have to (or want to) sell them all anyway. The 5DMkII has the edge over the D700 IMHO (with much more research still pending). However, after the last few recent releases, I have decided to sit back a while longer and wait till the dust settles. I have also dug myself deeper into the Nikon trench though as I am about to acquire their 70-200VR F2.8 (an FX/DX usable lens) and a SB900 flash.....

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This is true for people like myself looking into the possibility of going full frame from DX. 3/4 of my lenses are now DX only. I would have to (or want to) sell them all anyway. The 5DMkII has the edge over the D700 IMHO (with much more research still pending). However, after the last few recent releases, I have decided to sit back a while longer and wait till the dust settles. I have also dug myself deeper into the Nikon trench though as I am about to acquire their 70-200VR F2.8 (an FX/DX usable lens) and a SB900 flash.....

I do think the 5DMkII is a great camera, but if one reads some of the more balanced reviews, which Craig mentions, all is not roses with this camera, and in a number of respects falls short against the D700. These include speed, built in flash, quite likely not as good high ISO noise performance, weather sealing, ability to use DX lenses (minor), autofocus, EV bracketing spread (important for someone like me playing with HDR), some differences in Auto WB abilities etc. There are even some reviews that complain of sub 1000 noise issues in the 5D MkII. What it comes down to is, if you need MP and video, get the MkII, otherwise the D700 is probably still a better all round camera.

BTW, came across a neat technique to run the D700 at 8fps without the drive.

Now that my D700 housing is about to arrive, the vaporware disease raises it's ugly head. A D700x that fits in the same housing, shooting DX at 10MP. Nice; no housing conversions needed to hold onto my beloved Tokina 10-17. Same res as my present D200. So why did I need anything more than my D200?

 

http://www.dpnotes.com/nikon/nikond700/tips.php

Edited by loftus

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loftus

 

Without wanting to worry you, I'd hazard a guess and suggest that the D700 might be short lived in production run terms. Nikon are being outclassed in the (admittedly pointless) specification stakes by Canon. To compete effectively in a specification driven market Nikon will need to release an update of the D700 before too long. We seem to have arrived at an odd time in digital SLR evolution with specifications, especially MPixel) still increasing despite lenses being the probable limiting factor on image quality. Whilst no camera is, nor ever will be, perfect, the latest generation are getting rather esoteric in as much as their specifications may well exceed needs for the majority of users/uses. I'm still using both 1DS and 5D cameras and in all honesty they still work well and deliver images of sufficient quality to fulfill the very vast majority of my image requirements - I'm also using a Leica M8 which at 10MPixel is hardly a heavily specified camera today, but it does deliver perfectly usable results too and in a very small package. Personally I'm now more interested in lenses and their abilities that camera bodies, although the 5DMkII is interesting due to its HD video possibilities underwater.

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loftus

 

Without wanting to worry you, I'd hazard a guess and suggest that the D700 might be short lived in production run terms. Nikon are being outclassed in the (admittedly pointless) specification stakes by Canon. To compete effectively in a specification driven market Nikon will need to release an update of the D700 before too long. We seem to have arrived at an odd time in digital SLR evolution with specifications, especially MPixel) still increasing despite lenses being the probable limiting factor on image quality. Whilst no camera is, nor ever will be, perfect, the latest generation are getting rather esoteric in as much as their specifications may well exceed needs for the majority of users/uses. I'm still using both 1DS and 5D cameras and in all honesty they still work well and deliver images of sufficient quality to fulfill the very vast majority of my image requirements - I'm also using a Leica M8 which at 10MPixel is hardly a heavily specified camera today, but it does deliver perfectly usable results too and in a very small package. Personally I'm now more interested in lenses and their abilities that camera bodies, although the 5DMkII is interesting due to its HD video possibilities underwater.

I agree with you. The reality is I'm extremely happy with my D700. (frankly even my D200 does fine for most things) If I do make the transition to FX only underwater, and I ever get to a 2 body situation like I presently have with my D200; the concept of a D700x and D700 bodies fitting in the same housing, especially if the D700x adds video and the ability to still effectively use the 10-17, is about as sweet a combination as I can imagine right now. It's really hard to imagine anything I have ever tried or thought of doing in the past with film or digital, that I could not do with this combination.

Lenses yes, a 15-25mm FX fisheye zoom is my request.

Edited by loftus

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I do think the 5DMkII is a great camera, but if one reads some of the more balanced reviews, which Craig mentions, all is not roses with this camera, and in a number of respects falls short against the D700. These include speed, built in flash, quite likely not as good high ISO noise performance, weather sealing, ability to use DX lenses (minor), autofocus, EV bracketing spread (important for someone like me playing with HDR), some differences in Auto WB abilities etc.

 

If I was invested heavily in Canon glass, the 5DMkII would be one I would definitely be considering. However, the autofocus issue would be a big stumbling block as it uses the same system as the 5DMkI, which has it's issues. As well, with HDR, high frame rate is important to me as it allows me some options to do handheld HDR. And for the rare underwater HDR that I've done, it would be virtually impossible without the high frame rate of 9 fps at full resolution.

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WETPIXEL MEMBERS COMPLAINING ABOUT PRICE?

 

I never thought I would see this day. When I joined, I thought you needed to be an heir(ess) or hedge fund manager. After all, many spend top dollar on cameras, housings, lenses, ports, strobes and such. Then there is the $2000 viewfinder. I'm not even talking about that $6,000 trip to some isolated part of Indonesia or Papua New Guinea.

 

So what's another couple thousand going to do? Just trying to put things into perspective. Nikon somehow feels the market will bear the $8000 price. Manufacturers have been doing this for years. Aside from profit taking, it assured their professional and wealthy customers that the average Joe couldn't compete. Now I'm reminiscing about the days when David Doubiliet would travel with huge cases filled with Aquatica housings and assistants who would load film. How could anyone compete with a guy who's equipment and resources outclassed everyone else's.

 

To sum it up, I agree that the price is artificially high. I just don't see why it's such a surprise.

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If I was invested heavily in Canon glass, the 5DMkII would be one I would definitely be considering...

 

I am invested in NIKON glass but for the DX3 price I would buy a 5DmkII, sigma 15mm, 17-40, 100mm and a 2x.

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I am invested in NIKON glass but for the DX3 price I would buy a 5DmkII, sigma 15mm, 17-40, 100mm and a 2x.

And then you can trade it all back in when the D700x comes out. ;)

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