D3X or D800/E

Started Aug 23, 2013 | Discussions
camerashy
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D3X or D800/E
Aug 23, 2013

I'm undecided whether to go for a D3X or D800/E as an upgrade from my D700.

I'm into landscapes, architecture and some studio work so would appreciate your input especially from anyone who has the D3X and maybe a D800 as well.

Thanks

Dave

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Kali108
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 23, 2013

camerashy wrote:

I'm undecided whether to go for a D3X or D800/E as an upgrade from my D700.

I'm into landscapes, architecture and some studio work so would appreciate your input especially from anyone who has the D3X and maybe a D800 as well.

Thanks

Dave

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As a former owner of a D3X and current owner of a D800, I would, without hesitation, buy the D800 over the D3X.  Only advantage of D3X is the "pro body".  For landscapes, the D800e is slightly preferable imo, but for everything else, D800.

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Wanchese
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 23, 2013

Good question. I used to rent the D3X for long Holiday weekends. I had hoped the D3X prices were going to head to the sub $3k region, at which point I was going to pounce. I got impatient however and succumbed to the allure of the D800.

After a few months with the D800, I am not disappointed. The crop-ability never ceases to amaze. However, I find myself zooming to 200% or higher on D800 files in LR with much less frequency than I did with the D3X.

Is it because 36mpx magnifies every flaw in my technique and I'm skurred to look closely? Am I becoming complacent with the glories of 7360 x 4912 files? Or does the D3X produce more pleasing detail at my norm iso of 640?

For me, whatever the answer, it is a moot point. I'm all in with the D800. But if the prices of both bodies were the same.........

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Wanchese
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to Wanchese, Aug 23, 2013

Duh..........why haven't I done a side by side comparison? So I did, and the D800 was at least the equal of the D3X in terms of image detail at 200%. I still prefer the D3X form factor, batteries and dual CF cards, but IQ is just as good if not better with lots more pixels to play with.

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Park Kultry
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 23, 2013

Medium format film cameras are the only way to go. Digital will not work.

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The Andy G
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 23, 2013

I don't do landscapes and architecture but needed to do a cityscape shot recently. For what I do normally, I never see false colours and moiré but did run into it for the cityscape. If you like, contact me via private message and I'll send you a raw of the urban landscape from my D800e and you can experiment with it as you please.

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camerashy
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to The Andy G, Aug 23, 2013

Many Thanks everyone for your kind help....which camera is still under consideration.

Andy PM sent thanks.

davea

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JHWJR
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

Wish I could tell you more about the D3X and could compare them better, but...

I have a D700 and could not have imagined needing or wanting more, unless I could get the same camera with 3 or 4 times more pixels without giving anything up.

Then I picked up a D800 and I LOVE IT MORE. I love that when I'm at my very best (tripod, cable release, mirror up, good lens), it pays off in stunning detail. But I also like that I have the extra exposure latitude. That's MUCH more significant that I was expecting. It's great.

And I got a really decent movie mode to boot. I actually use it now and again.

And it takes both CF and SD cards.

And I got all this for about the same price as I paid for the D700.

Everyone should be as happy with their camera as I am with mine.

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camerashy
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to JHWJR, Aug 24, 2013

I'm hapy with the D700 but could do with more Mp for bigger file sizes.

Now you see I dont use a tripod very often as I like to handhold and wonder whether the D800/E would work not so well with my way of working.

Thanks

Dave P

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kaffina
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

I used to own the Nikon D3x, now I have the Nikon D800e.  I mostly shoot landscape and still objects.

What I like about the D800 compared to the D3x is

Its smaller and lighter ( but possible to add the grip if needed )

Little bit better resolution if used with good lenses , tripod, mirror lookup.

Better dynamic range.

Cleaner on high iso.

Used to be cheaper ( probably about same price now )

more cropping capabilities.

On the plus side the D3x body is probably a lot stronger and the battery life was better to.

But it don't matter so much for me ,  I still get about 900 shoots on fully charged battery on my D800.

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jean bernier
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to kaffina, Aug 24, 2013

I owned the D3X. It's got replaced by 2 D800, because of new features I could really use. As a high resolution back-up, the D3X got unused for months, as you go readily to the highest pixel count body first. So reluctantly, I chose to sell it and acquire another D800 (identical bodies, and it does not hurt to have a spare D800 while the other is in the shop for weeks, waiting for parts...!)

D3X plusses:

obviously, better built body,

long life shutter

battery/charger compatible  with other D3 series cameras, not compatible with D4/D800

AC power supply not compatible with D4/D800

2 X CF cards

resolution quite close but definitely not equal to D800

superior DR, not equal to D800

It's a gorgeous camera. Was flawlessly designed and produced (not the case with the D800), with the resulting high ticket.

Minusses:

Large and heavy, if that matters. You're not better off with a D800 with grip.

Lacks many recent developments, such as sensor cleaning (this feature may help but is definitely not a solution), video, time lapse, writing to both card and computer (instant back-up in the studio), two-way "bubble" level, other small conveniences.

Looses value by the day, as it instantly lost appeal once a $3000 36 mpix became available.

Get 2 X D800 for the price of a brand new D3X while they last...

Loses image quality quite readily above say, 1200 ISO. In terms of overall color, shadow color and overall noise.

Noisy shutter

That's all I can think of at this moment. In short, get the old king of resolution used, for very cheap, and enjoy this pinnacle of DSLR's for years to come. Or for the same price, get the feature-laden, flimsy built and hastily produced D800, but enjoy more features, better image quality, better re-sale value, smaller, lighter body and so on. The D3X performs beautifully in good light. D800 can still be used in poor light.

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ebuddha
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

I had the d3x and have the d800

the best part of the d800 is its dynamic range.

yes, more pixels is good.

get a battery grip and you're all set.

people talk about build quality, but the d800 is not a plastic toy.  It's a very well built and designed Nikon.  I think all that talk is to somehow justify 3 or 4 thousand dollars.

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AlephNull
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to Park Kultry, Aug 24, 2013

Park Kultry wrote:

Medium format film cameras are the only way to go. Digital will not work.

Odd. My digital SLRs seem to work. Perhaps I better go check that they are still working.

Aren't you the person who claimed to be using a D4x? I would have thought that would be digital.

You seem to be inconsistent in your outrageous claims.

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maroubas
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to AlephNull, Aug 24, 2013

I had D800 and now i have a used D3x and i am VERY happy for my decision...
D800 is excellent camera but i prefer the d3x because it is focus 'correctly'
With d3x i dont need the faster PC, i have dual cf card support, and the battery life is greater.
I have perhaps the cleanest base iso file (iso100) but i dont have good iso performans upper iso800.
Its heavy, its built like a tank.
It has a very good resolution (d800 is better but i dont need it any more) and the DR is excellent(d800 is very-very little better here but the different is minimum).

Ι prefer the D3x, FOR ME and my needs its better camera..

(the only camera that maybe i consider is d800E.)

Leonidas

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Joseph S Wisniewski
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D800 for me
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

camerashy wrote:

I'm undecided whether to go for a D3X or D800/E as an upgrade from my D700.

I'm into landscapes, architecture and some studio work so would appreciate your input especially from anyone who has the D3X and maybe a D800 as well.

I have a D800E and a D3, and have spent enough time with a D3X to have a pretty strong opinion.

D800 wins on every aspect of iimage quality: detail, dynamic range, and color accuracy.

D800 wins in transportability, it's almost a pound lighter than a D3X. That's either a lighter bag or an extra lens.

D800 wins in usability, the display is better, the liveview has more capabilities, and you can remote control more functions using DSLR Dashboard than you could on a D3 family camera.

D800 is less tiring for portrait work. D3X is easier to shoot vertical, but that's not worth an extra pound.

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tomoo1000
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

Well for me it's the D3x I did have the d800 (well 3 of them) but all had the AF problems and the poor QC that has took hold at Nikon, if I was you I may try a D800 as it is newer, but make sure you check it out well, for me none of my D3x's needed to be checked out they just work day in and day out.

Phil.

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sjstremb
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to camerashy, Aug 24, 2013

I also had a D3x, then got a D800 (not the E model). I do not miss the D3x one bit. Its smaller, lighter and easier to use, yes, there were some early AF issues, but most of us got over them. All this talk about power usage and battery life, I purchased my D800 with two extra batteries and honestly, even shooting non stop at Mardi Gras in New Orleans all day, one battery did the job. The D3x batteries might be technically better, but if can re-charge that nite, its not an issue, the D3x would however go for days.

Its also like half the price, so unless you really needed the duel CF cards and extra weight, not sure what the issue. Even if the price were the same, not sure I would get a D3x, not now with the D4x on the horizon.

However resolution wise, do you need 36 mp? This is what I did the first week I had my D800. I made a 17x24 (my standard size-17x24" paper image 15x22.5" @ 300 dpi), I looked at that and thought, man hard to see any improvement, I then made a print on 30x40 paper, I could see a little improvement, I then made a 40x60" image with the D800 file WOW, you REALLY see the difference !!

Ask yourself, how much resolution you need, I don't want to start anything here, but you might be happy with a D7100 (which is my current second camera I use as a backup or when I need the focal length multiplier with my 70-200).

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camerashy
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to sjstremb, Aug 24, 2013

Thanks for some great information and personal comments really appreciate your time in posting

Dave

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CFynn
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to AlephNull, Aug 25, 2013

AlephNull wrote:

Park Kultry wrote:

Medium format film cameras are the only way to go. Digital will not work.

Odd. My digital SLRs seem to work. Perhaps I better go check that they are still working.

Aren't you the person who claimed to be using a D4x? I would have thought that would be digital.

You seem to be inconsistent in your outrageous claims.

Perhaps his "Korean made D4X" is a medium format film camera. Maybe the North Koreans have revived the Pentax 6x7 and put a Nikon label on it to try and fool the enemy. 

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Waterengineer
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Re: D3X or D800/E
In reply to Park Kultry, Aug 25, 2013

Park Kultry wrote:

Medium format film cameras are the only way to go. Digital will not work.

Park, I know your comment is with much sardonic humor, but there is much truth to what you say. 

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