Overcoming some of the limitations of a D600

Started Nov 16, 2012 | Discussions thread
AllOtherNamesTaken
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Re: Overcoming some of the limitations of a D600
In reply to anirbana, Nov 16, 2012

anirbana wrote:

First, this is not a D600 dust or oild thread. I just need some advice and thoughts in making an informed decision over some of the limitations of D600 (as it seems that way).

I am considering the D600 next DSLR. I am hobbyist and not a pro and I do landscapes, family people portraits, candids and off camera flash photography. I am coming from a D3100 (sold now)

I tried the D600 at the JEssops store in London and got some raw images on my card and I was impressed by the handling, feel and of course the terrific latitude in post processing due to remarkable dynamic range. I have read several threads on certain limitations of the D600 and want to understand your thoughts on these and how some of these can be overcome with simple techniques.

1. Max shutter speed of 1/4000. I know that with most photographers very few shots are taken above that speed. I know the limitation. My question is can it be overcome using ISO 50 and not ISO 100 in very bright sunlight? Does ISO 50 come with its own issues as it is not a real base ISO? I tend to think this as a simple solution, but the net is full of rant on the lack of a faster shutter speed on D600 when most cameras that are compared with have either 100 or 200 as base ISO . What are the other ways to overcome this limitation?

The same "issue" existed on the D3/D700/D300 and nobody complained about it.  Base ISO of 200 and 1/8000 is the same exposure as ISO 100 and 1/4000.  ND filters are cheap, or you could drop to ISO 50 and lose minimal DR, or stop down once.  I have never taken a single photo at 1/8000.  I understand for some extremely specific scenarios (maybe F1.2 in extremely bright sunlight?) 1/8000 is useful but it hasn't been a problem with any previous camera where the base ISO was 200 and the exposure was the same.  I think the number of users absolutely requiring 1/8000 to stop motion for their work are few and far between, but yes, those may be better served by a D700 or D800.  From an exposure-only standpoint, there are numerous workarounds and it is the same as the previous generation of cameras.

2. Flash sync speed of 1/200th of a second. I have read most Canons have it at 1/160 th or 1/180th of a second, but since the DX D7000/D300S and all other Nikon FX offers 1/250th sync speed people are not happy with the D600. Nikon might have thought about differentiating consumer and pro in their FX lineup, but this seems like a silly point on their side too.

However, with the D600 nikon has decoupled Flash Exp comp with the Camera exp compensation just like Canon does and the only other Nikon camera that has this feature is the D4. My question is can this feature be used to overcome the max sync speed limitation on the D600 to a certain extent, by underexposing the ambient? If yes, how effective would that be?

The flash sync isn't much of an issue.  I'm not sure of a photo that would be "make or break" with 1/200 vs 1/250.  I've personally never been in that situation.  The Canon 5DM3 only has 1/200 sync, and the 5DM2 was more like 160-180/sec.  Obviously the option of 1/250 or faster would be ideal, but I hardly consider it a limitation, especially compared to the far more expensive competition.

3. Aperture control in movie mode- I know there is no way to overcome this other than a firmware update (that too subjected to hardware design). Is there any hope on Firmware side?

The current rumor is that a firmware update is coming down the pipes very soon to fix this exact complaint.

4. AF-ON - I see the AF-On button is missing and most D600 users has programmed the AF-AE lock button to AF-ON. My question is is it possible to programme any other button with AE-AF lock?

Thoughts and ideas appreciated. No dust or oil comments please. Please feel free to add additional limitations with hints on how it can be overcome partly or fully.

You can use the AE-L button as AF-on and program one of the Fn buttons to be AE-L if you need it regularly.  Very easy workaround.

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