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Is the D200 the optimal DX camera for color readout at low ISO?

Started Oct 22, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Is the D200 the optimal DX camera for color readout at low ISO?
Oct 22, 2013

Hi all,

Recently I suggested on the FX forum that IMHO the 12MP sensor in the D700 produced inherently better color than any of the higher resolution cameras that followed it. Moreover, using Dpreview's camera comparator I showed that the higher the resolution was pushed, the greater the color inaccuracy became. At 16MP the D4 was slightly worse, the 24MP D600 was even worse, and the 36MP D800 was clearly the worst. My original post can be found here:


This got me to question if any lower resolution Nikon sensors preceding the D700 might be able produce even better color. And, thanks to all the praise heaped upon Nikon's last CCD sensor in the D200, that ultimately brought me here.

So here is the question... is the D200 the optimal camera to add to a D700 for low ISO portrait work where color quality (not resolution) is the primary objective? Used D200's can now be picked up for a paltry $250... at that price point they could be perfect portrait sensors when mated to the fast FX primes I have for the D700. The benefits I can imagine would be:

  • The DX format would image from sharpest central portion of the lens, reducing the softness in the corners and edges of the FX lens even when opened up wide for bokeh effects.
  • The CCD sensor would produce the optimal skin color and tonality for portrait work, hopefully even better than the D700. The 10 MP resolution is more than enough. The D300 has better a better AF system and is better at high ISO, but these aren't things aren't as important to me as the CCD sensor for my intended use.

I do have a concern which I hope someone can comment on though, that being the D200 doesn't have micro focus adjust feature that the D300 and my D700 have. Since all of my primes require at least some moderate micro focus adjustment on my D700 (+4 to -13) I'm concerned that they'll be less than perfectly sharp on a D200. How do those of you with similar FX setups deal with your fast lenses on a D200?  Remember that we're talking about shooting at f/1.4 at razor thin DOF.  Is it a noticeable issue even?


 fPrime's gear list:fPrime's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Nikon D1X Nikon D200 Nikon D700
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