My D800 experience
10 months ago
I bought a D800E in mid May two weeks before setting off on safari to Kruger NP in South Africa. First thing i did was to fine tune the AF (centre point), and then practiced around the neighbourhood. My background is D7000 and D300s and so my observations below
are based and influenced by these two cameras.
Handling - Really no big difference when compared to the D300s. I have always liked the D300s and still think its a great camera. FPS is not up to the D7k or D300 but really not a big issue for me 99% of the time. There are of course other differences, but others on this forum have given very detailed reviews so i wont bore you. I will say however, i really wish the D800E had the same U1, U2, functionality as the D7k.
IQ - As expected this is where the D800 clearly shines. The centre af is very sharp resulting in a high percentage of keepers. The D7k is no slouch, and when every thing is just right you would be hard pressed to pick the difference between the two. However the D800 has two clear advantages, better ISO, and much much better af. What i have noticed in post processing, I am using no sharpening and less clarity than before. Now this may be because my editing style has changed, but i am convinced less editing is required with the D800E than either the D7k or the D300s.
General impressions - i like the camera a lot. Its the first camera to be picked up when i am out shooting wild life. Unfortunately my wife (professional photog) has also taken a liking to it and so it looks like we are buying a second D800.
I have found the camera to be easy to handle, fast, accurate focus, and very pleasing image rendition. It may or may not be the best camera, but for me an amateur, it performs brilliantly.
On returning from Africa, and reading all the hype on DPreview, decided to check for L and R focus. To my surprise it appears my camera does have a bit of this problem. Obviously it does not affect my shooting style and so not too bothered about it. However i will organise one day to send it in for recalibration. Until then i shall continue taking pictures and enjoying the camera.
Hope you enjoy the photos below. Thanks