Nikon's response to D800 focus issue

Started Aug 8, 2012 | Discussions
dave steinberg
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Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
Aug 8, 2012

I am on my second D800 due to the left focus issue. Today I asked service what Nikon's status was on fixing the left focus issue.

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

Sound like the kid's stories of an ostrich sticking its head in the sand to hide from danger.

Nikon D800
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Lance B
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Not Nikon's official response
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 8, 2012

dave steinberg wrote:

I am on my second D800 due to the left focus issue. Today I asked service what Nikon's status was on fixing the left focus issue.

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

Sound like the kid's stories of an ostrich sticking its head in the sand to hide from danger.

Really, this is not Nikon's response, but some dunderhead behind the service counter.

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tashley
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Re: Not Nikon's official response
In reply to Lance B, Aug 8, 2012

If Nikon HAD a response, and was properly managed, the 'dunderhead' would know it and at least be able to parrot it.
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user_name
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Re: Not Nikon's official response
In reply to tashley, Aug 8, 2012

Unless the response to the service center was "don't say anything." To which the person answering the phone may have decided to add "intelligent" on their own.

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ne beginner
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That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

The people that answer the phone are trained on what ... and what not ... to say. On any issue.

I have spoken to several of them, including a state-side person in a US service center. While none will acknowledge the D800's left back AF defect, none will deny it. It's basically no comment. "Send it in and we'll take a look at it", "Can't say what the issue is until we test it". There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

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CaryTheLabelGuy
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to ne beginner, Aug 9, 2012

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

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Josh152
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to CaryTheLabelGuy, Aug 9, 2012

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

Simple logic dictates that info that inflammatory an potentially damaging to Nikon's reputation would be kept under tight controls and only authorized people way higher up in the food chain would be allowed to talk about the issue to the public.

You don't actually think Nikon would let some barely above minimum wage, read from a script, low level customer service rep who probably doesn't even have accurate information make statements about a potentially defective product do you?

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dave steinberg
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to Josh152, Aug 9, 2012

This was not a customer service rep, but someone in the repair dept. who was supposed to help diagnose problems.

The reason for my original call was a repaired 80-400 that was returned to me and now takes very soft images.

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GodSpeaks
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Re: Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

dave steinberg wrote:

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

While this does not sound like an official Nikon response, there may indeed be some truth in it. NO camera, prior to the D800, has had this kind of resolution, so small focus errors may very well have gone unnoticed due to the lack of resolution.

The D800 has simply brought these issues to the forefront.

Nikon is probably struggling to deal with the issue and until a workable solution is found has decided to stay silent on the matter. Perhaps, not the best course of action.

Then again, these forums do not represent the world at large. These forums represent only a very very small segment of people who use cameras, and seem to mostly represent a very vocal segment.

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Alejandro Daz del Ro Fery
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Re: Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

The bigest sin the D800's best ever AF has: the D800 also uses the best IQ FX sensor.

Don't you think so? ... Still looking for wide lenses ext left defocus @ f/1.4? ... Sorry.
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Greg Gebhardt
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Your thread is very misleading
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

This is not an official response from Nikon.
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beshannon
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Re: Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

dave steinberg wrote:

I am on my second D800 due to the left focus issue. Today I asked service what Nikon's status was on fixing the left focus issue.

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

Sound like the kid's stories of an ostrich sticking its head in the sand to hide from danger.

It is a shame there is zero moderation on this forum as the thread title is very misleading.
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ne beginner
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to CaryTheLabelGuy, Aug 9, 2012

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

Yes I have the memo .... are you serious? Do you still believe in Santa? Perhaps you think the name they use when they answer is really theirs? Or that the supervisor they transferred you too is not really just another CS rep sitting in the next cube?

For any company even a fraction of the size of Nikon, the people that answer the phone in any customer service capacity are scripted in their responses. They are trained on what to say, what not to say, and how to handle irate customers. They receive regular instructions on how to answer questions, particularly on new topics that are popping up.

Their responses are crafted to sooth the caller while at the same time avoiding any liability. "I'm sorry you are having that problem" is not an acceptance that your problem is caused by the product.

CR reps immediately pass along to management questions that new or different, and management comes up with approved responses very quickly.

While you are talking to them, they are listening for cue words so they can classify your call into established buckets. Once they do that, they follow the procedure for that topic. If your call does not fit a bucket, ie a new question, there is a bucket for that, like "new questions", and a procedure to follow.

Based on how the ones I have talked to have responded, it seems clear to me that there is a "left AF" bucket, with "send in pictures" as the first course of action, and "send it in so we can look at it" as a "plan B" response.

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ne beginner
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You may have got to someone that is not supposed to be ...
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

... Talking to the public.

It is virtually impossible in the US service centers to talk to anyone outside customer service, or someone who is not trained to talk to the public. True "technicians" are out of bounds. The "technician" you may be transferred to is also usually part of CS, just a different area within that department. Not saying people who answer technical problems are not trained technicians, but rather that these folks are not the same people working on equipment, and they have been trained on how to talk to customers.

What Nikon is doing in this regard is SOP, nothing unusual.

Companies are careful on problems like the left AF defect on the D800, and will instruct anyone that might come in contact with the public on how to handle questions. That would include their sales and marketing staff.

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Josh152
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Re: Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
In reply to GodSpeaks, Aug 9, 2012

GodSpeaks wrote:

dave steinberg wrote:

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

While this does not sound like an official Nikon response, there may indeed be some truth in it. NO camera, prior to the D800, has had this kind of resolution, so small focus errors may very well have gone unnoticed due to the lack of resolution.

The D800 has simply brought these issues to the forefront.

Nikon is probably struggling to deal with the issue and until a workable solution is found has decided to stay silent on the matter. Perhaps, not the best course of action.

Then again, these forums do not represent the world at large. These forums represent only a very very small segment of people who use cameras, and seem to mostly represent a very vocal segment.

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But all the examples of cameras that probably really do have the problem I have seen posted, it isn't' just a small focus error. The differnce between the left bank and the center/right bank is dramatic. It would be obvious no matter what res the camera has.

If you think the D800 has the highest resolution of any camera you need to look into the subject more. I suggest you start by googling Phase One and Hasselblad.

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CaryTheLabelGuy
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to Josh152, Aug 9, 2012

Josh152 wrote:

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

Simple logic dictates that info that inflammatory an potentially damaging to Nikon's reputation would be kept under tight controls and only authorized people way higher up in the food chain would be allowed to talk about the issue to the public.

You don't actually think Nikon would let some barely above minimum wage, read from a script, low level customer service rep who probably doesn't even have accurate information make statements about a potentially defective product do you?

Simple logic dictates that until Nikon states the D800 is defective or there is verfiable info that states Nikon is trying to cover up a D800 AF scandle, there is no official "gag order" on the subject. The D800 is not "defective" as you state. There are people out there with legitimate AF issues, but most are user error and unrealistic expectations of the outer non-cross-type PDAF sensors. We have always known the outer non-cross-type AF sensors are not as accurate as the center cross-type bank. This holds true for all modern DSLR cameras! Again, some are way out of spec, but the percentage of out-of-calibration D800s is probably no different than the D700, D3s/D3/D3x or D300s. This AF hysteria has gotten way out of hand.

You can't go around calling a product defective as a whole and then make-up lies about the manufacturer having a gag-order on the subject. Simple logic calls this deceitful and TOTALLY un-verified information. Stop contributing to the hysteria.

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CaryTheLabelGuy
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to ne beginner, Aug 9, 2012

ne beginner wrote:

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

Yes I have the memo .... are you serious? Do you still believe in Santa? Perhaps you think the name they use when they answer is really theirs? Or that the supervisor they transferred you too is not really just another CS rep sitting in the next cube?

For any company even a fraction of the size of Nikon, the people that answer the phone in any customer service capacity are scripted in their responses. They are trained on what to say, what not to say, and how to handle irate customers. They receive regular instructions on how to answer questions, particularly on new topics that are popping up.

Their responses are crafted to sooth the caller while at the same time avoiding any liability. "I'm sorry you are having that problem" is not an acceptance that your problem is caused by the product.

CR reps immediately pass along to management questions that new or different, and management comes up with approved responses very quickly.

While you are talking to them, they are listening for cue words so they can classify your call into established buckets. Once they do that, they follow the procedure for that topic. If your call does not fit a bucket, ie a new question, there is a bucket for that, like "new questions", and a procedure to follow.

Based on how the ones I have talked to have responded, it seems clear to me that there is a "left AF" bucket, with "send in pictures" as the first course of action, and "send it in so we can look at it" as a "plan B" response.

Like I stated in my reply to Josh, until Nikon has stated there is a widespread AF issue or you can list verifiable and accurate sources stating that there is a D800 AF cover-up (which in itself sounds totally rediculas), what you're saying is TOTAL speculation and mis-information and should be presented as such. Stop fueling the hysteria. If there is a wide-spread AF issue, Nikon would eventually acknowledge the issue once they feel they have a good handle on the situation. That MIGHT come in the form of a public recall or maybe they'll just issue an internal repair directive.

My OPINION is that there are a few D800s that have legitimate issues but the percentage is likely no more than any other modern DSLR model. Most of the AF issues we're hearing about are user-error and totally un-realistic expectations of the system's outer non-cross-type PDAF sensors, which have always been know to be much less accurate than their cross-type counterparts. The further towards the outside you go, the less accurate the non-cross-type sensors get and other factors contribute to this fact (I.e. field curvature etc.).

I've tested 2 D4s, 4 D800s and 1 D800E and they've all been well within the acceptable specs and all of them acted no different than our D3s, D3, D700 and D7000, other than having better overall performance than the older cameras. Simply put, the new Multi-cam 3500 PDAF system in the D800/D4 is the best overall focus system ever put into a Nikon camera, with the exceptions being the few that are out-of-spec.

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DAVID MANZE
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to CaryTheLabelGuy, Aug 9, 2012

Hi,

Just a quick observation on what seems to be a serous outbreak of "frustrated D800 owners" Firstly,I believe completely that there is a problem! People who have already used Nikon or otherwise cameras, and have already gone through the learning curve of AF , don't start complaining all of a sudden, for nothing! Secondly, there's always annoyingly, those,without any problems, who then say,that these same people,don't know how to use their cameras, and then get mega defensive or even worse insulting, to the point where they are actually claiming that the competition are paying people to write false threads to defame Nikon.
Sad!

After what I've been reading here,there's more than a fair share of that,just when folk are looking for a little understanding or gentle advice.

Anyway,just a thought?maybe,those with no problems had a different batch of,for want of a better word are " AF point splitters" which divide the focal points before the module,and the recent batch have some optical error in their manufacture. This would explain why the engineers at Nikon are unable to do anything about it! At least for the moment. Maybe!

Seems that the D800 is a really great camera specially at it's price point,but some,or even quite a few, have an AF problem and Nikon must sort it out ASAP, before customers go to Canon. I am with Pentax and have gone down the same route.

Good luck and I hope there's a speedy solution for you guys caught in the middle of it!
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Josh152
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Re: That does not sound like an approved response ...
In reply to CaryTheLabelGuy, Aug 9, 2012

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

Josh152 wrote:

CaryTheLabelGuy wrote:

ne beginner wrote:

There's a gag order on this topic, and engaging in any kind of discussion on it could get the Nikon person in trouble.

Do you know for a FACT that this is the case?

Simple logic dictates that info that inflammatory an potentially damaging to Nikon's reputation would be kept under tight controls and only authorized people way higher up in the food chain would be allowed to talk about the issue to the public.

You don't actually think Nikon would let some barely above minimum wage, read from a script, low level customer service rep who probably doesn't even have accurate information make statements about a potentially defective product do you?

Simple logic dictates that until Nikon states the D800 is defective or there is verfiable info that states Nikon is trying to cover up a D800 AF scandle, there is no official "gag order" on the subject. The D800 is not "defective" as you state. There are people out there with legitimate AF issues, but most are user error and unrealistic expectations of the outer non-cross-type PDAF sensors. We have always known the outer non-cross-type AF sensors are not as accurate as the center cross-type bank. This holds true for all modern DSLR cameras! Again, some are way out of spec, but the percentage of out-of-calibration D800s is probably no different than the D700, D3s/D3/D3x or D300s. This AF hysteria has gotten way out of hand.

You can't go around calling a product defective as a whole and then make-up lies about the manufacturer having a gag-order on the subject. Simple logic calls this deceitful and TOTALLY un-verified information. Stop contributing to the hysteria.

I agree that the cameras aren't defective and it is probably less than 1% of all D800 produced that have an issue with left AF. That doesn't change that Nikon knows the buzz on the internet and has most certainly given explicit instructions to their CSRs as to what they can and can't say about it.

The scale of the problem is not relevant to Nikon as far as what they let their CSR's say which will be very little and probably fallow a strict script. Regardless of the situation Nikon can't have their CSRs just giving out what ever info they feel like about it or their own opinions aobut it. That is just not how a big corporation handles public relations issues.

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AZBlue
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Re: Nikon's response to D800 focus issue
In reply to dave steinberg, Aug 9, 2012

Someone answering the phone at a Nikon service center who tells you something is not an official Nikon statement about anything. Jeez, can't people tell the difference? Do you always rely on the person being paid $10/hr to answer phones to tell you what Nikon is really feeling?

dave steinberg wrote:

I am on my second D800 due to the left focus issue. Today I asked service what Nikon's status was on fixing the left focus issue.

Their response: There are no know unusual problems with the D800 focus. She also said "ALL CAMERAS, ALL BRANDS, HAS LEFT FOCUS POINT ISSUES". The only reason the D800 is in the discussions is because it is new.

Sound like the kid's stories of an ostrich sticking its head in the sand to hide from danger.

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