Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?

Started Apr 22, 2012 | Discussions
jfriend00
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Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
Apr 22, 2012

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?

1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

  • 16-18MP

  • 8-10fps

  • better high ISO/DR than the D7000

2) High MP (a DX version of the D800)

  • 24MP

  • 4-5fps

  • comparable high ISO/DR to the D7000

Nikon D3 Nikon D300 Nikon D300S Nikon D4 Nikon D40 Nikon D7000 Nikon D800
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tsitalon1
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

Option 1 every day, and twice on Sunday's

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Arree
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

I hope it will be something in between:

20 mpx. 6-8 fps(exp with batterypack).
a little higher and lower ISO then the D7000(50-28600 is good enough for me). wifi connection.
a good 16-85VRIII f4 ??

That will do it for me....

jfriend00 wrote:

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?

1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

  • 16-18MP

  • 8-10fps

  • better high ISO/DR than the D7000

2) High MP (a DX version of the D800)

  • 24MP

  • 4-5fps

  • comparable high ISO/DR to the D7000

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marcus300
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

Option 1 for me.

I'd like a more high ISO than my D300 and the D7000 and U1, U2 setting etc for 3 settings would be nice. A little more frames/second would also be good.

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n057
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

jfriend00 wrote:

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?
1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

Option 1

JC
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bobn2
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Give people the real choices?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

jfriend00 wrote:

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?

1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

  • 16-18MP

  • 8-10fps

  • better high ISO/DR than the D7000

2) High MP (a DX version of the D800)

  • 24MP

  • 4-5fps

  • comparable high ISO/DR to the D7000

These comparisons are silly, because they compare two unreal cameras, uninformed by any real understanding of what is involved. Your choice involves two different pixel counts. So why not leave it at that? Just ask whether people would want 16MP or 24MP. Instead you betray your prejudices by adding in what you think (mostly wrongly) would be the consequences of the extra MP. Sp lets look at the options.

  • FPS. Nikons current EXPEED has a throughput of 176 MP/sec, so the frame rate for 24MP would be 7.3 FPS. So people could have 24MP and 7.3 FPS, they wouldn't need to be limited to just 4-5FPS. On the other hand, the limits of Nikon's D300 mech seems to be 8FPS, so the 16MP version would be 8FPS. So, if you ask people whether they'd rather have 16MP and 8FPS or 24MP and 7.33FPS, you'll probably get a different answer, won't you?

  • DR. DR ultimately depends on how the sensor is designed, but there is a clear tendency for it to increase as pixel count increases, so it is more likely that the 24Mp version would have better DR than the 16MP version, yet you put them the other way round. If you'd asked people whether they preferred 24MP with better DR or 16MP with worse DR you would have got different answers, don't you think?

  • 'ISO'. Low light performance depends on quantum efficiency and read noise, and there appears to be no clear linkage between pixel size and QE. On the other hand, read noise seems to have reduced as a trend as pixel size has decreased, yet you suggested that the smaller pixel version would have worse 'ISO'.

I think a more realistic choice is this:

1)

  • 16-MP

  • 8 FPS

  • Same DR as D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

2)

  • 24MP

  • 7.3 FPS

  • Slightly better DR than D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

Provided of course that Nikon uses slightly improved version of the D7000 (Sony) sensor tech. If it used D3200 (Nikon) sensor tech, all bets are off, because we don't know how that performs yet.

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Bob

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Cultured Vulture
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to bobn2, Apr 22, 2012

bobn2 wrote:

jfriend00 wrote:

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?

1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

  • 16-18MP

  • 8-10fps

  • better high ISO/DR than the D7000

2) High MP (a DX version of the D800)

  • 24MP

  • 4-5fps

  • comparable high ISO/DR to the D7000

These comparisons are silly, because they compare two unreal cameras, uninformed by any real understanding of what is involved. Your choice involves two different pixel counts. So why not leave it at that? Just ask whether people would want 16MP or 24MP. Instead you betray your prejudices by adding in what you think (mostly wrongly) would be the consequences of the extra MP. Sp lets look at the options.

  • FPS. Nikons current EXPEED has a throughput of 176 MP/sec, so the frame rate for 24MP would be 7.3 FPS. So people could have 24MP and 7.3 FPS, they wouldn't need to be limited to just 4-5FPS. On the other hand, the limits of Nikon's D300 mech seems to be 8FPS, so the 16MP version would be 8FPS. So, if you ask people whether they'd rather have 16MP and 8FPS or 24MP and 7.33FPS, you'll probably get a different answer, won't you?

  • DR. DR ultimately depends on how the sensor is designed, but there is a clear tendency for it to increase as pixel count increases, so it is more likely that the 24Mp version would have better DR than the 16MP version, yet you put them the other way round. If you'd asked people whether they preferred 24MP with better DR or 16MP with worse DR you would have got different answers, don't you think?

  • 'ISO'. Low light performance depends on quantum efficiency and read noise, and there appears to be no clear linkage between pixel size and QE. On the other hand, read noise seems to have reduced as a trend as pixel size has decreased, yet you suggested that the smaller pixel version would have worse 'ISO'.

I think a more realistic choice is this:

1)

  • 16-MP

  • 8 FPS

  • Same DR as D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

2)

  • 24MP

  • 7.3 FPS

  • Slightly better DR than D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

Provided of course that Nikon uses slightly improved version of the D7000 (Sony) sensor tech. If it used D3200 (Nikon) sensor tech, all bets are off, because we don't know how that performs yet.

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Bob

You left out one important spec. Buffer depth. The buffer depth of the 16MP camera would be considerably more. Even when the buffer is full, it will take a lot less time to write to the card.
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davidmamartin
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to bobn2, Apr 22, 2012

If you want to be pedantic, the EXPEED will process that at a constant flow. You will not be able to acheive anything like 7.3 FPS with 24MP, probably closer to 6.5 reliably as a maximum.

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jfriend00
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to bobn2, Apr 22, 2012

bobn2 wrote:

These comparisons are silly, because they compare two unreal cameras, uninformed by any real understanding of what is involved. Your choice involves two different pixel counts. So why not leave it at that? Just ask whether people would want 16MP or 24MP. Instead you betray your prejudices by adding in what you think (mostly wrongly) would be the consequences of the extra MP. Sp lets look at the options.
I think a more realistic choice is this:

1)

  • 16-MP

  • 8 FPS

  • Same DR as D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

2)

  • 24MP

  • 7.3 FPS

  • Slightly better DR than D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

Provided of course that Nikon uses slightly improved version of the D7000 (Sony) sensor tech. If it used D3200 (Nikon) sensor tech, all bets are off, because we don't know how that performs yet.

Bob, the point of this exercise is that there IS some tradeoff between MP and speed and going faster also costs more money and the harder you make it to go faster, the more it costs to try to get that speed. It is not just about the EXPEED chip speed as there are many other things that go into make a camera go sustainably fast (mirror, power, AF speed, buffer, storage card interface, etc...).

I was guessing at what the fps would be for a 24MP sensor. You have a different guess as to what that would be - that's fine. The real question is would you rather have it faster or more MP? I had to throw out some straw scenarios to get people to judge that there is an actual tradeoff here.

This post was an offshoot of all the people calling for a 24MP D400 without understanding that there could be some speed tradeoffs in doing so. I personally wouldn't give up a single fps to add MP because 12MP is already enough for me. I recognize that Nikon is unlikely to ever offer another dSLR at 12MP so I assumed the bottom end for a new body would be 16-18MP.

From Nikon's past models, we have data points at > 12MP mostly from much more expensive cameras than the D400 price point would be. The $7000 D3x (not the absolute latest technology) was 24MP at 5fps. The brand new D800 is 4fps at 36MP. If you scaled that one directly down to 24MP (and if this stuff is linear), then you would think that the D800 electronics could perhaps do 24MP at 6fps. The less expensive D7000 at 16MP does 6fps. Scale that up to 24MP and you're in the 4-5fps range.

At the other end of the spectrum, we have the D4 doing 10fps at 16MP and moving a full-frame mirror to boot. Now that's a $6000 camera (~3x what the D400 will probably be) so it's hard to know how much of that tech could go in a $2000 camera. Based on your EXPEED numbers, I wonder if it's got twin EXPEEDs that can work on alternating images.

So ... if I read your post again, you are proposing that the ONLY tradeoff between a 16MP and a 24mp D400 would be 0.7fps? Do you really believe that?

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herbymel
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

I hope it will be announced...
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Funduro
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

Option #1 for me. Can't wait to send Nikon some of my money for the new D400x Mark IV V2, or whatever it will be called. Thought a used D700 won't be out of the question either. Can't wait for the rumors or specs to come out.
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bobn2
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

jfriend00 wrote:

bobn2 wrote:

These comparisons are silly, because they compare two unreal cameras, uninformed by any real understanding of what is involved. Your choice involves two different pixel counts. So why not leave it at that? Just ask whether people would want 16MP or 24MP. Instead you betray your prejudices by adding in what you think (mostly wrongly) would be the consequences of the extra MP. Sp lets look at the options.
I think a more realistic choice is this:

1)

  • 16-MP

  • 8 FPS

  • Same DR as D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

2)

  • 24MP

  • 7.3 FPS

  • Slightly better DR than D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

Provided of course that Nikon uses slightly improved version of the D7000 (Sony) sensor tech. If it used D3200 (Nikon) sensor tech, all bets are off, because we don't know how that performs yet.

Bob, the point of this exercise is that there IS some tradeoff between MP and speed and going faster also costs more money and the harder you make it to go faster, the more it costs to try to get that speed.

But the relationship is probably not the one that you suggest.

It is not just about the EXPEED chip speed as there are many other things that go into make a camera go sustainably fast (mirror, power, AF speed, buffer, storage card interface, etc...).

Indeed, but Nikon already has a chassis suitable for 8FPS.

I was guessing at what the fps would be for a 24MP sensor. You have a different guess as to what that would be - that's fine. The real question is would you rather have it faster or more MP? I had to throw out some straw scenarios to get people to judge that there is an actual tradeoff here.

It depends what the tradeoff is, as i suggested, your estimate is not sound.

This post was an offshoot of all the people calling for a 24MP D400 without understanding that there could be some speed tradeoffs in doing so.

And suggested the wrong speed tradeoff.

I personally wouldn't give up a single fps to add MP because 12MP is already enough for me. I recognize that Nikon is unlikely to ever offer another dSLR at 12MP so I assumed the bottom end for a new body would be 16-18MP.

And therein you admit your agenda.

From Nikon's past models, we have data points at > 12MP mostly from much more expensive cameras than the D400 price point would be. The $7000 D3x (not the absolute latest technology) was 24MP at 5fps. The brand new D800 is 4fps at 36MP. If you scaled that one directly down to 24MP (and if this stuff is linear), then you would think that the D800 electronics could perhaps do 24MP at 6fps. The less expensive D7000 at 16MP does 6fps. Scale that up to 24MP and you're in the 4-5fps range.

Make a simple calculation of what the Expped 3 will do and you have the right figure, 7.3 FPS.

At the other end of the spectrum, we have the D4 doing 10fps at 16MP and moving a full-frame mirror to boot. Now that's a $6000 camera (~3x what the D400 will probably be) so it's hard to know how much of that tech could go in a $2000 camera. Based on your EXPEED numbers, I wonder if it's got twin EXPEEDs that can work on alternating images.

No, it's got the same Expeed as the D800, and the same as other DSLR's will have, just as happened last time.

So ... if I read your post again, you are proposing that the ONLY tradeoff between a 16MP and a 24mp D400 would be 0.7fps? Do you really believe that?

Yes and yes. That's why I said you were posing a false choice. Unless of course Nikon invested in a faster DX chassis that would do 10FPS.
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Peter v.d Werf
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 22, 2012

jfriend00 wrote:

From Nikon's past models, we have data points at > 12MP mostly from much more expensive cameras than the D400 price point would be. The $7000 D3x (not the absolute latest technology) was 24MP at 5fps. The brand new D800 is 4fps at 36MP. If you scaled that one directly down to 24MP (and if this stuff is linear), then you would think that the D800 electronics could perhaps do 24MP at 6fps. The less expensive D7000 at 16MP does 6fps. Scale that up to 24MP and you're in the 4-5fps range.

You are comparing and/or confusing the technical possibilities (mechnical shutter capability, data throughput/processing power of camera's cpu) and the marketing/design choices the manufacturer makes.

Most logical, the D400 will get 8-9fps (maybe with grip) to have a real advantage over the D7000 market.

Nikon will never market your option 2 camera as it's as it's top-of-the-line DX camera (even when overlooking the fact it's now cheapest camera allready has 24MP 4fps...)

Because while a possible 24MP is a nice gain, a better body quality, better AF, higher fps and larger buffer are the major items that are critical for a D400 buyers. Only a few MP's more (and a better body) will not be enough to get people to pay the expected 1900euro. Mind you, that's 900-1000euro more!!! then the current D7000 or D300s as it's main competitors from the same brand..

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Dpmartin
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to bobn2, Apr 22, 2012

I'd vote for a better low light performance, higher fps and improved build quality over the d7000. I shoot mostly indoor sports and am looking to upgrade my d90, but the d7000 doesn't really cut it for me. I really don't care if this camera is ff or dx, as long as it can capture action shots cleanly at iso above 1600, preferably 3200 and is close to 6-7 fps.

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jfriend00
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Re: Give people the real choices?
In reply to bobn2, Apr 22, 2012

bobn2 wrote:

So ... if I read your post again, you are proposing that the ONLY tradeoff between a 16MP and a 24mp D400 would be 0.7fps? Do you really believe that?

Yes and yes. That's why I said you were posing a false choice. Unless of course Nikon invested in a faster DX chassis that would do 10FPS.

If you do a linear extrapolation from the D4 (which is probably a little over optmistic since the D4 costs 3x what the D400 will likely sell for), you would get these predictions for what the electronics might be able to do:

16MP - 10fps (D4 baseline, D7000 is 6fps)
18MP - 8.9fps
24MP - 6.7fps (D3x is 5fps, D3200 is 4fps)
36MP - 4.4fps (D800 is 4fps)

You, it appears are also making assumptions that a 16MP D400 would top out at 8fps and are giving the 24MP credit for 7.3fps when that's not what a straight extrapolation from the D4 would suggest.

I'm arguing that there is a potentially meaningful tradeoff in speed between a 16MP and a 24MP camera.

At the same price point, I've got to believe a 16MP camera is also going to be able to do more continuous images too.
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JimPearce
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I'm on the fence John...
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 23, 2012

I can exploit more fps or more resolution. 6 or 7 fps and a 3 second buffer is what I absolutely need. I'm more concerned about the autofocus than anything else: it must be accurate both in acquisition and tracking and fast. Beyond that I need to be able to shoot excellent quality at ISO 1600 when necessary. I wish I could be confident that Nikon will deliver even this much.
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jfriend00
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Re: I'm on the fence John...
In reply to JimPearce, Apr 23, 2012

JimPearce wrote:

I can exploit more fps or more resolution. 6 or 7 fps and a 3 second buffer is what I absolutely need. I'm more concerned about the autofocus than anything else: it must be accurate both in acquisition and tracking and fast. Beyond that I need to be able to shoot excellent quality at ISO 1600 when necessary. I wish I could be confident that Nikon will deliver even this much.

Yes, top level AF is actually #1 on my list. I'd like to see a significant step up from the D300 (it has been 4-1/2 yrs after all since that camera debuted) and a step up in high ISO performance seems like a non-brainer since all recent cameras have improved meaningfully in that regard.

I don't want to take a step backwards in fps or workflow speed and I'm hoping that Nikon doesn't push the D400 that direction while chasing more MPs. Frankly, the only data point that gives me any comfort is that they didn't push the MPs on the D4 nearly as much as they could have so I'm hoping we see the same logic with the D400. But, who knows if there even will be a D400. It seems logical that there should be, but Nikon isn't always predictable in this way and isn't afraid to sometimes break some glass (pardon the pun) to go the direction they think they need to go (which usually works out for them in the long run).

At least I can still keep shooting with my D300 for a long time.
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RedFox88
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Re: Do you want your DX D400 to be high res or fast?
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 23, 2012

jfriend00 wrote:

Assuming that there's a D400 with a DX sensor in it that has the D4 AF module and a D300s-type build, which of these options would you rather have?

1) Fast (a DX version of the D4 like the D300 was a DX version of the D3)

  • 16-18MP

  • 8-10fps

  • better high ISO/DR than the D7000

Little chance of a d400 having fewer than 20 MP.

2) High MP (a DX version of the D800)

  • 24MP

  • 4-5fps

  • comparable high ISO/DR to the D7000

That honestly would just be a d3200 with more "robust" construction. Who wold pay over $1000 more than the d3200 for that?!

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AF Tracker
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Oh, SOOOOO easy
In reply to jfriend00, Apr 23, 2012

Fast.

I want three things:

  1. High frame rate, at least as fast as the D300 with the EN-EL4

  2. AF that can keep up, and that means faster than the D300, more like D2Hs fast.

  3. 3 seconds of buffer at the highest frame rate (24 frames)

I am assuming that the ISO will be excellent at 1600.

I don't print any larger than 11x14, anyway.

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AF Tracker
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Let's take this a step further
In reply to bobn2, Apr 23, 2012

bobn2 wrote:

I think a more realistic choice is this:

1)

  • 16-MP

  • 8 FPS

  • Same DR as D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

  • 18 frame buffer

2)

  • 24MP

  • 7.3 FPS

  • Slightly better DR than D7000

  • Better 'ISO' (slightly) than D7000

  • 12 frame buffer

Buffer depth matters.

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