Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?

Started Jan 3, 2013 | Discussions
Joe Porto
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Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
Jan 3, 2013

I keep reading these threads regarding such and such lens won't cut it on the D800 due to it's massive 36MP resolution, yet we've had Nikon cameras with the same pixel density for several years now...the D5100 and D7000 for example....yet no one ever made those comments about these cameras, and people have been happily shooting the 18-105mm on them.

I was reading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

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andrvas
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

That's because you only use the center of the glass, where the lens is sharpest. For ultimate sharpness across the frame, primes are the best choice on the D800.

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Joe Porto
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to andrvas, Jan 3, 2013

andrvas wrote:

That's because you only use the center of the glass, where the lens is sharpest. For ultimate sharpness across the frame, primes are the best choice on the D800.

Which may be a requirement for landscape or architecture, but certainly not portraiture.

I guess I just feel bad for some of these folks who have already spent way more money than they need to on the D800 and ask for lens advice, and are told that they need to spend 3 times as much on a 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII over a 70-300mm VR, or told they need a 28, 50, 85mm 1.8 prime over a 24-85mm VR.

I've had everything from Nikon 14-24mm to Sigma 15-30mm to a Nikon 28-105mm to a 70-200mm 2.8 VRII to 400mm f/2.8 VR on my D800, and have taken beautiful shots. Sure, some lenses are better than others, but I'm not zooming in at 100% just to check lens performance. I am looking at the whole picture, and any of those lenses can give me results that I would be proud to print at 24x36" or more.

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JeffHallPhoto
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Seems to work okay with zooms as well...
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

D800/70-200VRII:

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Epic Light
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to andrvas, Jan 3, 2013

That is pretty much it. Furthermore the d800/e records details that other cameras cannot, right? These additional details are visible at 100% and also visible at scaled-down percentages as well, because other cameras simply cannot record them. I hate to say it, but the same is true for lens aberrations and imperfections. Some say they can accept the trade-offs of zooms on the d800/e, but to my eyes the always persistent difference between zooms and primes is made far far more evident and as a consequence is unacceptable on the d800/e.

andrvas wrote:

That's because you only use the center of the glass, where the lens is sharpest. For ultimate sharpness across the frame, primes are the best choice on the D800.

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Alejandro Daz del Ro Fery
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Does it need primes? ... I don't think so ... Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes ...
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

IMO, the biggest difference on sharpness is the Nano coating ... my 24-70/2.8G is at least as sharp (if no more) as my 50/1.4G.

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Regards.

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ofior
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

I think you will find just as many people in this forum,  that will tell you, and show you examples, that most modern FX lenses are capable of excellent results with the D800/E. Of course, some are better than others, and the very best will extract more juice out of the 36MP sensor, ( and many debate which lenses those are, and which "smokes", "blows out of the water", "destroys", which) but that does not mean other lenses won't cut it, or that only with the best can you produce great photos with the D800. I also believe you will find that many feel that the 18-105 kit lens is a bit outmatched by the D7000 sensor, and better lenses will do that sensor better justice, but it is still capable of great images and that proves the same point. In both cases, it is simply a matter that good is always outdone by better, but that does not make good any less good.

Regards,

Ozzie

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

As a matter of fact, this is all the exact same concern trolling we were treated to for months on end when the D7000 first came out.  Pro glass necessary, massive tripod, Teutonic "shot discipline," etc., etc.  Nonsense.  The D800e does not need pro glass whatsoever to produce Google Earth results with humble lenses stopped down a bit.

Pro glass is wonderful, don't get me wrong, but every lens Nikon makes is also terrific on this camera.

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Epic Light
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Jan 3, 2013

This is not true.  Just because you accept images from your collection of older and cheaper lenses does not make them optimum,  Without question, A+ glass on this camera to do the sensor justice, otherwise what is the point of the camera?  Again, without question the d800 records far far more aberrations and imperfections from lenses than say a d700.

Rent a 85/1.4g and tell me it does not simply destroy your 85/1.8d in an eye popping fashion on the d800. But of course that lens is not perfect either, and CA that was 2.5 pixels wide on the d700 are now 8 pixels wide on the d800.  When sensitivity goes up, all performance factors are recorded accordingly. The d800 represents the breaking point for most lenses.

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

As a matter of fact, this is all the exact same concern trolling we were treated to for months on end when the D7000 first came out. Pro glass necessary, massive tripod, Teutonic "shot discipline," etc., etc. Nonsense. The D800e does not need pro glass whatsoever to produce Google Earth results with humble lenses stopped down a bit.

Pro glass is wonderful, don't get me wrong, but every lens Nikon makes is also terrific on this camera.

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Reilly Diefenbach
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Epic Light, Jan 3, 2013

Epic Light wrote:

This is not true. Just because you accept images from your collection of older and cheaper lenses does not make them optimum, Without question, A+ glass on this camera to do the sensor justice, otherwise what is the point of the camera?

The point being to make a world class hi resolution photograph with the D800e.  Like this one, taken with the 70-300VR:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/51747496@N08/8339091543/sizes/o/in/set-72157630696943482/

Don't keep reading, tempting as that may be. Go back up and click on the link, download it and put up to 100% in your favorite viewer.  Amazing that such a cheap optic mounted on a D800e could so thoroughly outresolve any camera that came before, isn't it?  You could make a huge print from it, no question at all about that.

Now go to 400%.  See those little clearly defined stairsteps? Those are pixels.  The lens has done what it needed to do and is absolved from further participation in the detail gathering process. Need more resolution than you can get through a 70-300VR? Get a 50MP camera. A better lens may have slightly more contrast or fractionally sharper corners or more delightful bokeh, but the detail resolution is there in quantity.

Again, without question the d800 records far far more aberrations and imperfections from lenses than say a d700.

I'm not sure why you think I have an 85mm lens or any "older and cheaper" ones. It appears that you have mistaken me for a new guy.

Rent a 85/1.4g and tell me it does not simply destroy your 85/1.8d in an eye popping fashion on the d800.

You have made a number of such wild statements, and you are wrong no matter how times you repeat them. "Destroy," "eyepopping," come off the hyperbole.

I hereby challenge you or anyone else to put up  7360 x 4912 100% jpgs on the website of your choice of the same scene taken with two similar FL lenses to prove your point. I'm really not going to hold my breath on that one.

But of course that lens is not perfect either, and CA that was 2.5 pixels wide on the d700 are now 8 pixels wide on the d800. When sensitivity goes up, all performance factors are recorded accordingly. The d800 represents the breaking point for most lenses.

No, that would be at maybe 50 MP on FX.

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gl2k
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

Joe Porto wrote:

ading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

What is "wonderful" to you might be inadequate for a pro. It all depends on how much quality you are asking for.

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Alejandro Daz del Ro Fery
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Jan 3, 2013

I own & like the VR70-300 too, but have to say that @ f/8 (no exif data) any F-mount lens is a jewel

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canyoube
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Reilly Diefenbach, Jan 3, 2013

I think that this is a very good image from this lens at the D800 resolution.  Even pixel peeking shows pretty good corner to corner overall quality.  You could ask for more contrast etc but it is still impressively sharp.

Tongue in cheek, I have cropped a small section of one of the buildings.

Is this an example of Moire;-)

Cheers!

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inasir1971
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

Joe Porto wrote:

I keep reading these threads regarding such and such lens won't cut it on the D800 due to it's massive 36MP resolution, yet we've had Nikon cameras with the same pixel density for several years now...the D5100 and D7000 for example....yet no one ever made those comments about these cameras, and people have been happily shooting the 18-105mm on them.

I was reading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

There's a little bit of a misunderstanding in some quarters. The D800/E will give you images of the same quality as an older camera with the same lens, same focus accuracy (or lack of), and technique - actually better certainly no worse.

Attention to glass, staying within optimal apertures, accurate focus, and technique are required to get much larger, better images which push the sensor to what it's capable of.

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ScottRH
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to ofior, Jan 3, 2013

ofior wrote:

I think you will find just as many people in this forum, that will tell you, and show you examples, that most modern FX lenses are capable of excellent results with the D800/E. Of course, some are better than others, and the very best will extract more juice out of the 36MP sensor, ( and many debate which lenses those are, and which "smokes", "blows out of the water", "destroys", which) but that does not mean other lenses won't cut it, or that only with the best can you produce great photos with the D800. I also believe you will find that many feel that the 18-105 kit lens is a bit outmatched by the D7000 sensor, and better lenses will do that sensor better justice, but it is still capable of great images and that proves the same point. In both cases, it is simply a matter that good is always outdone by better, but that does not make good any less good.

Regards,

Ozzie

+1

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Epic Light
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to inasir1971, Jan 3, 2013

That is simply not true.  You are only thinking in terms of resolution or sharpness.  in that case what you describe is correct, each lens maxes out at a certain point and the d800 just sucks down all that is available.

However, for lens aberrations and imperfections without question the d800e exposed more flaws even in the best glass,  this should be obvious cause and effect thinking for you.  This is also why the zeiss 1.4/55 is coming.  36 mega pixels is extremely sensitive.

inasir1971 wrote:

Joe Porto wrote:

I keep reading these threads regarding such and such lens won't cut it on the D800 due to it's massive 36MP resolution, yet we've had Nikon cameras with the same pixel density for several years now...the D5100 and D7000 for example....yet no one ever made those comments about these cameras, and people have been happily shooting the 18-105mm on them.

I was reading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

There's a little bit of a misunderstanding in some quarters. The D800/E will give you images of the same quality as an older camera with the same lens, same focus accuracy (or lack of), and technique - actually better certainly no worse.

Attention to glass, staying within optimal apertures, accurate focus, and technique are required to get much larger, better images which push the sensor to what it's capable of.

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primeshooter
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These discussions do my head in
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

Joe Porto wrote:

I keep reading these threads regarding such and such lens won't cut it on the D800 due to it's massive 36MP resolution, yet we've had Nikon cameras with the same pixel density for several years now...the D5100 and D7000 for example....yet no one ever made those comments about these cameras, and people have been happily shooting the 18-105mm on them.

I was reading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

The simple fact is that if you were happy with it on the D7000 you will be happy with it on the D800 (look up the pixel density of both). And for good reason. The lens costs £350 here and it's very good stopped down. People need to quit their crying!

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primeshooter
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Let me tell you a little story...
In reply to Epic Light, Jan 3, 2013

Epic Light wrote:

This is not true. Just because you accept images from your collection of older and cheaper lenses does not make them optimum, Without question, A+ glass on this camera to do the sensor justice, otherwise what is the point of the camera? Again, without question the d800 records far far more aberrations and imperfections from lenses than say a d700.

Rent a 85/1.4g and tell me it does not simply destroy your 85/1.8d in an eye popping fashion on the d800. But of course that lens is not perfect either, and CA that was 2.5 pixels wide on the d700 are now 8 pixels wide on the d800. When sensitivity goes up, all performance factors are recorded accordingly. The d800 represents the breaking point for most lenses.

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

As a matter of fact, this is all the exact same concern trolling we were treated to for months on end when the D7000 first came out. Pro glass necessary, massive tripod, Teutonic "shot discipline," etc., etc. Nonsense. The D800e does not need pro glass whatsoever to produce Google Earth results with humble lenses stopped down a bit.

Pro glass is wonderful, don't get me wrong, but every lens Nikon makes is also terrific on this camera.

I had to laugh when I seen your comment about a 2.5 pixel thing becoming an 8 (slight inaccuracy but I'll let that pass) pixel thing. Oh heaven's above how will we survive! Seriously, on Chromatic Abberation and spectrochromatism...I have been enjoying these bad boys for years. We are friends, all 3 of us. I make the shots, and they show up when I am at 135mm and F/2...it's the strangest thing!

I have printed huge shots with these sorts of phenomenon in them from many different high and low resolution sensors and people have asked me how I got the cool purple / green glow, and how could they do that in their pictures? It seems photographers think a little too much about this stuff. Whilst I would not put a 24-120 3.5-5.6 lens on the D800, I would be more than happy with a decent old AF-D lens like the 85mm 1.8D, what you have said between the differences is complete hyperbole. I do not own this lens though, I own the 85mm 1.4D. I suppose you are gonna tell me that it's a steaming pile of cow dung now the G version is out? I'm sorry, I won't be selling it!

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u007
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Re: Why does D800 need sharp primes but D7000 works great with kit lens?
In reply to Joe Porto, Jan 3, 2013

Joe Porto wrote:

I keep reading these threads regarding such and such lens won't cut it on the D800 due to it's massive 36MP resolution, yet we've had Nikon cameras with the same pixel density for several years now...the D5100 and D7000 for example....yet no one ever made those comments about these cameras, and people have been happily shooting the 18-105mm on them.

I was reading a thread about the 70-300mm VR w/ D800, and there were comments that the lens was not worthy of the D800 resolution. That is silly. I've used it on my D7000 for a couple years, and it takes wonderful pictures. I use it on the D800, and it takes wonderful pictures. It may not win any resolution chart contests, but it is a fine, inexpensive zoom.

Because people are silly and don't think these myths through before parroting them endlessly on the internet.

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Epic Light
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Re: Let me tell you a little story...
In reply to primeshooter, Jan 3, 2013

I don't really care about CA either, I remove it with one click of a button, but that doesn't change the fact that the d800 recorded much more of it than a d700. It's really rather simple. While you may have an attractment to your 85/1.4d, and I can understand why (I also owned/loved the lens) dxomark rates it 30% less fit for the d800 than the  85/1.4g.  I've owned both and there is a huge huge difference from f1.4-f4.

primeshooter wrote:

Epic Light wrote:

This is not true. Just because you accept images from your collection of older and cheaper lenses does not make them optimum, Without question, A+ glass on this camera to do the sensor justice, otherwise what is the point of the camera? Again, without question the d800 records far far more aberrations and imperfections from lenses than say a d700.

Rent a 85/1.4g and tell me it does not simply destroy your 85/1.8d in an eye popping fashion on the d800. But of course that lens is not perfect either, and CA that was 2.5 pixels wide on the d700 are now 8 pixels wide on the d800. When sensitivity goes up, all performance factors are recorded accordingly. The d800 represents the breaking point for most lenses.

Reilly Diefenbach wrote:

As a matter of fact, this is all the exact same concern trolling we were treated to for months on end when the D7000 first came out. Pro glass necessary, massive tripod, Teutonic "shot discipline," etc., etc. Nonsense. The D800e does not need pro glass whatsoever to produce Google Earth results with humble lenses stopped down a bit.

Pro glass is wonderful, don't get me wrong, but every lens Nikon makes is also terrific on this camera.

I had to laugh when I seen your comment about a 2.5 pixel thing becoming an 8 (slight inaccuracy but I'll let that pass) pixel thing. Oh heaven's above how will we survive! Seriously, on Chromatic Abberation and spectrochromatism...I have been enjoying these bad boys for years. We are friends, all 3 of us. I make the shots, and they show up when I am at 135mm and F/2...it's the strangest thing!

I have printed huge shots with these sorts of phenomenon in them from many different high and low resolution sensors and people have asked me how I got the cool purple / green glow, and how could they do that in their pictures? It seems photographers think a little too much about this stuff. Whilst I would not put a 24-120 3.5-5.6 lens on the D800, I would be more than happy with a decent old AF-D lens like the 85mm 1.8D, what you have said between the differences is complete hyperbole. I do not own this lens though, I own the 85mm 1.4D. I suppose you are gonna tell me that it's a steaming pile of cow dung now the G version is out? I'm sorry, I won't be selling it!

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