Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?

Started 7 months ago | Discussions
Rob Tomlin
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Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
7 months ago

Been a long time since I've posted here.  I've had my D700 since the camera was first released, so I've had it for over 5 years.

Overall I am still happy with the IQ that I get from my D700, but I was thinking that after 5 years that Nikon would have come out with a replacement that would provide improvements in most areas over the D700.

I'm not interested in the D800 because of the huge file sizes for those 36.3 megapixel images.

The D610 seems like the file sizes would be at least a bit more manageable.  However, I rarely print larger than 11x14.

In what way would the D610 be an upgrade over the D700 beside the increased resolution?  I know it has HD Video, but I have a dedicated HD Camcorder, so not sure how important that would be to me.

Any improvements in areas like AF?  Is the sensor improved over the D700?

Seems like I could sell my D700 and upgrade to a D610 without having to shell out a lot of cash, but I'm still not sure if it's worth doing?

Thanks for any opinions on this.

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AustinTed
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Rob Tomlin wrote:

Been a long time since I've posted here. I've had my D700 since the camera was first released, so I've had it for over 5 years.

Overall I am still happy with the IQ that I get from my D700, but I was thinking that after 5 years that Nikon would have come out with a replacement that would provide improvements in most areas over the D700.

I'm not interested in the D800 because of the huge file sizes for those 36.3 megapixel images.

The D610 seems like the file sizes would be at least a bit more manageable. However, I rarely print larger than 11x14.

In what way would the D610 be an upgrade over the D700 beside the increased resolution? I know it has HD Video, but I have a dedicated HD Camcorder, so not sure how important that would be to me.

Any improvements in areas like AF? Is the sensor improved over the D700?

Seems like I could sell my D700 and upgrade to a D610 without having to shell out a lot of cash, but I'm still not sure if it's worth doing?

Thanks for any opinions on this.

The D700 is still a great camera. The D610 is will give you significantly improved dynamic range in addition to the increased resolution. Autofocus is a mixed bag. D610 is good down to f8, but has the AF points more tightly clustered. Best bet is to see a D610 in person to see if you like it's handling. It will be different than the D700 and this might end up being the more significant deciding factor. The D800 is more of a natural successor to the D700 in terms of control layout/handling.

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Alan Brown
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I have had a D700 and now have D600
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Rob Tomlin wrote:

Been a long time since I've posted here. I've had my D700 since the camera was first released, so I've had it for over 5 years.

Overall I am still happy with the IQ that I get from my D700, but I was thinking that after 5 years that Nikon would have come out with a replacement that would provide improvements in most areas over the D700.

I'm not interested in the D800 because of the huge file sizes for those 36.3 megapixel images.

The D610 seems like the file sizes would be at least a bit more manageable. However, I rarely print larger than 11x14.

In what way would the D610 be an upgrade over the D700 beside the increased resolution? I know it has HD Video, but I have a dedicated HD Camcorder, so not sure how important that would be to me.

Any improvements in areas like AF? Is the sensor improved over the D700?

Seems like I could sell my D700 and upgrade to a D610 without having to shell out a lot of cash, but I'm still not sure if it's worth doing?

Thanks for any opinions on this.

To my mind the AF  differences are incremental in different modes..

The D600 (D610 is in essence the same camera IQ, AF and operation wise) is lighter (good or bad depending on your personal taste

Res is doubled and worthwhile only if you crop or 'want to' crop more from your existing D700 files

IQ is a personal taste too.. I like it a little more than D700 but a lot more than either the D700 or D300 i came from

Personally I could live with the D700 again quite happily ( was very fond of the high ISO ability).. but, barring the weight and lack of video.

If you like what you have already and not struggling for more DR perhaps, I'd spend some money on better glass if you are in that position.

my 2 cents

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PenPix
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

I have a friend with a D600 and the extra resolution and improved ISO performance is noticeable when I pull the images up on my monitor.  But I do like the build and layout of the D700 better.

I too rarely print larger than 11x14, and for my uses, the D600 does not add anything that would improve my photography.  The day when I get a job whereby the D700 cannot fulfil my needs... is when I will upgrade to a D800e.  (I'd get a D4 it it was not beyond what I'm willing to pay!)

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Maji
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

IQ and DR wise, I believe the D6xx are an upgrade over D700. However, build wise and FPS wise, it is not. But I think it is a wash, given the D6xx have redundancy in terms of two card slots. It is more important to me to have that backup than just a great build and  high fps. Also, the D700 focus points are more spread out while D6xx are scrunched up in the middle, but it can AFS down to f8 glass. So it is a wash in my mind.

If you are more about getting better DR and IQ, and want to have a better ability to crop, then I think the D6xx is better fit than the D700.

Said that, in the right hands, both camera  will take  great  photos.

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wisep01
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

You'd think the duffers at Nikon would have anticipated that the large RAW file size would serve as a deterrent to prospective buyers and come out with a micro-RAW capability that Canon has. But, nooo. That would be expecting too much of them.

If you enjoy staring at AF points clustered like a Tampax sanitary pad, go for the D610. With the exception of its sensor, it's a watered-down camera with a watered-down price that befits watered-down expectations.

My advice if you anticipate trying out one:  prepare yourself to be disappointed in advance and prepare well; then when you actually handle the D6xx series, you just might manage to handle it long enough to keep your food down. No guarantees, though.

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Alan Brown
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In reply to wisep01, 7 months ago

wisep01 wrote:

You'd think the duffers at Nikon would have anticipated that the large RAW file size would serve as a deterrent to prospective buyers and come out with a micro-RAW capability that Canon has. But, nooo. That would be expecting too much of them.

If you enjoy staring at AF points clustered like a Tampax sanitary pad, go for the D610. With the exception of its sensor, it's a watered-down camera with a watered-down price that befits watered-down expectations.

My advice if you anticipate trying out one: prepare yourself to be disappointed in advance and prepare well; then when you actually handle the D6xx series, you just might manage to handle it long enough to keep your food down. No guarantees, though.

something has made you very cynical this morning....

never seen so much hyperbole in so few paragraphs! (keep your food down is a little extreme don't you think?~)

hope your day improves.

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DesertLefty
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to wisep01, 7 months ago

wisep01 wrote:

...prepare yourself to be disappointed...

Disappointed? Nope, not me!

I absolutely loved my D700. During the time that I had it, it gave me more satisfaction and more great images than any digital camera that I've ever owned. But I'm starting to think that the D600 is gonna fill its shoes...

The D600's sensor definitely has better low-light performance, better dynamic range, and higher resolution. The D600's smaller size and lighter weight are big pluses for me, as is the faster processor. Autofocus spread is clearly inferior, but AF speed and accuracy are mostly "good enough", and don't seem all that different from what I remember of the D700.

There were a couple of controls on the D700 that I missed initially, but I'm now at home with the "new" way of switching focusing modes. I also like the ability to use the rear dial for "Easy ISO" and the front control dial to toggle Auto ISO. And I love the stupid little ML-L3 infrared remote!

I also appreciate that the control system on the D600 is almost identical that of my D7100 - they make an almost seamlessly interchangeable FX-DX pair - even if they don't use "pro" style controls.

So, I say "Go for it!". The market for D700's is still strong, and rightfully so. So, if you're hankering for a change, now could be a good time to do it.

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wisep01
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Re: no presents this morning then?
In reply to Alan Brown, 7 months ago

Alan Brown wrote:

wisep01 wrote:

You'd think the duffers at Nikon would have anticipated that the large RAW file size would serve as a deterrent to prospective buyers and come out with a micro-RAW capability that Canon has. But, nooo. That would be expecting too much of them.

If you enjoy staring at AF points clustered like a Tampax sanitary pad, go for the D610. With the exception of its sensor, it's a watered-down camera with a watered-down price that befits watered-down expectations.

My advice if you anticipate trying out one: prepare yourself to be disappointed in advance and prepare well; then when you actually handle the D6xx series, you just might manage to handle it long enough to keep your food down. No guarantees, though.

something has made you very cynical this morning....

never seen so much hyperbole in so few paragraphs! (keep your food down is a little extreme don't you think?~)

hope your day improves.

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There is a very fine line between 'hobby' and 'mental illness.' :'!':

You're right, absolutely right: I was being facetious, caricaturing the D600 series.

The truth of the matter is that, generally speaking, the Nikon FX line-up is as fine as its ever been. There is more in the way of choice today than at any time in recent memory.

As many may well agree, that may be a more boring assessment than the one I originally supplied, but it is closer to the truth.

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DigitalPhilosopher
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Re: no presents this morning then?
In reply to wisep01, 7 months ago

Disclaimer: I don't own a D600/610 - nor have I used one beyond testing one for a few minutes.

But I use a D700 for assignments. Most of them are rock/metal musicians in dark clubs. Last week I shot a gig with my favorite D700+ 50mm f/1.8 combo. When it comes to rock musicians, you often need to get 15-20 shots in the row on high fps to get that one "wow" image. In the dark club, it's not unthinkable that the camera is bumped against the stage or is knocked by frenzied audience in the mosh pit behind you.

To put it this way: It'd be nice to have a newer sensor. But no way would I give up the ruggedness of the D700 compared to the D600/610, nor its buffer performance.

Your individual needs might be different. I can imagine the D600/610 would be a very tempting solution (and preferable) for someone taking landscape or wildlife pics in dawn/dusk

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romfordbluenose
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

I don't think you should worry about the file sizes of the D800 in a couple of years most cameras will have more mps than the D800.

In terms of quality for an upgrade the D610 will give you better DR than the D700 as well as more cropping capability, and arguably better high ISO performance. But you then lose out by moving from a Pro camera to a consumer camera in some aspects but gain in others.

If you are stalling on the D800 due to the high Mps then I'd wait until all SLRs have the same MP count and then buy the D800. The high MPs on the D800 is an over-hyped problem unless you are a pro photographer who does not invest in his computing power, and why would a pro photographer do that?

The D700 was Nikons first attempt to bring FX to the masses although in a pro body.

The D600/610 is the first attempt to lower the entry point into FX hance why it has consumer facilities.

So yes it is a significant upgrade as it applies to a lot more photographers than the D700 ever did.

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DigitalPhilosopher
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to romfordbluenose, 7 months ago

romfordbluenose wrote:

So yes it is a significant upgrade as it applies to a lot more photographers than the D700 ever did.

That's pretty much the only point I disagree with.

I think the D600 category (entry-level Full-Frame) is a marketing decision more than anything else. What Nikon hopes for, is that people will get the D600 (now D610) as a stepping stone to something bigger (dare I call it a bait & switch approach?). Of course, that means more $$$ for Nikon.

Sure, everyone has been wanting an "affordable FX body", but that is definitely not what the D600/610 is. People began lusting over an FX body when the D3/D700 came out - and let's face it, their sensor was revolutionary compared to the D2x/D200 to a much greater extent than what the D600 to D700 difference is.

But right now, DX sensors have become much, much better (not to mention the mirrorless market shuffling the deck even further).

Personally, I think FX is something casual photographers don't need (hopefully I don't sound arrogant - I simply mean those who wonder whether they need FX usually don't).

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Mr Gadget
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For what it maybe worth...
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Rob Tomlin wrote:

Been a long time since I've posted here. I've had my D700 since the camera was first released, so I've had it for over 5 years.

Overall I am still happy with the IQ that I get from my D700, but I was thinking that after 5 years that Nikon would have come out with a replacement that would provide improvements in most areas over the D700.

I'm not interested in the D800 because of the huge file sizes for those 36.3 megapixel images.

The D610 seems like the file sizes would be at least a bit more manageable. However, I rarely print larger than 11x14.

In what way would the D610 be an upgrade over the D700 beside the increased resolution? I know it has HD Video, but I have a dedicated HD Camcorder, so not sure how important that would be to me.

Any improvements in areas like AF? Is the sensor improved over the D700?

Seems like I could sell my D700 and upgrade to a D610 without having to shell out a lot of cash, but I'm still not sure if it's worth doing?

Thanks for any opinions on this.

A couple of observations from someone that doesn't have either a D700 or D600 or D800, so for what it is worth...

I am heavily invested in Nikon DX glass and really don't have the need to print much larger than 18x12 or 11x14, my weapon of choice since 2006 has been the D2x which is really getting long in the tooth, so I have been waiting and waiting for the mythical unicorn D400. I recently picked up a D7100 when Amazon had one of their flash sales for under $900.

I believe the D7100 body and D600 are basically the same, build wise. I had anticipated that the build quality and feel of the D7100 would be disappointing, totally wrong. The D7100 feels good in my hands, controls seem to be where I expected them. I haven't given it the drop it out of the back seat of my lifted 4x4 pick up, like I did my D2x, but then it didn't survive too well either. I doubt that you would be too disappointed in the build quality of the D610. I miss the dedicated AF-On button and the built in view finder shade and the lack of a 10 pin connector and PC socket to be somewhat of a PITA.

File size - going from 12mpx to 24mpx does create a processing slow down with my somewhat ancient overclocked Q6600 quad core processor. If you are concerned about the D800 file size, you may find the file size from the D610 an issue as well.

Autofocus with the D7100 CAM 3500 51pt AF system is a major upgrade over my D2x, so you may find the D610 39pt AF system to be a down grade.

I guess you summed it up pretty well with your comment that the price difference between selling your D700 and buying a D610 is very small gives a pretty strong signal that even though used, a D700 still offers a lot of quality for the money...

Good luck with this one... If I had a D700 and some quality FX glass I wouldn't be looking for anything better...

Merry Christmas!

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Rob Tomlin
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Re: For what it maybe worth...
In reply to Mr Gadget, 7 months ago

Thanks for some excellent responses.

The way that I'm reading this is that I would get some benefits from the D610 over my D700, but I'd actually be taking a step backwards in a few areas as well.

Better dynamic range is certainly a plus that I would enjoy.  More resolution would also be nice.  Sounds like higher ISO performance is only slightly better.  But to actually have a downgrade in AF ability (even if slight), and a consumer type of body instead of the pro feel of my D700, I'm thinking that upgrading to the D610 from my D700 doesn't make much sense.

I think this really goes to show what a breakthrough camera the D700 really was, given it's been on the market for more than 5 years.

If I'm going to upgrade, I'm probably going to need to look closer at the D800 despite the huge file sizes.

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krikman
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Re: For what it maybe worth...
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Rob Tomlin wrote:

Thanks for some excellent responses.

The way that I'm reading this is that I would get some benefits from the D610 over my D700, but I'd actually be taking a step backwards in a few areas as well.

Better dynamic range is certainly a plus that I would enjoy. More resolution would also be nice. Sounds like higher ISO performance is only slightly better. But to actually have a downgrade in AF ability (even if slight), and a consumer type of body instead of the pro feel of my D700, I'm thinking that upgrading to the D610 from my D700 doesn't make much sense.

I think this really goes to show what a breakthrough camera the D700 really was, given it's been on the market for more than 5 years.

If I'm going to upgrade, I'm probably going to need to look closer at the D800 despite the huge file sizes.

About "consumer type of body"

In support of my ageing D300s I had buy D7100. After 1 week of using D7100 body I completely fit in a new smaller body concept and never return to D300. So I dislike D800/D700/D300 style body and found D600/D7100 with grip much more alike to D4 body in handling.

In My opinion difference which body is actually better lies in your lens choices. if you avoid using of f/2.8 pro zooms then D600 body with grip had perfect handling.

But for "big three" f/2.8 zooms D700/D800 body more comfortable.

Differense lies around 800 g mass lens. So f/4 zooms are good for D610 but f/2.8 not.

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Fred Mueller
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Re: For what it maybe worth...
In reply to krikman, 7 months ago

Rob - I've got both and the 700 is still the great camera it always was, but I never use it.

I was shooting real-estate commercially and decided I needed a second body after my 700 sensor failed during one shoot. So much for vaunted 700 quality from my POV.

I also had to replace all the rubber "skins" on mine at one point, and the front wheel on mine sticks as does the on/oof switch.

But basically the 600 sensor bests the 700 sensor and it's not subtle, especially at base ISO where the resolution and DR really stand out, but also at hi ISO where it is a full stop better at least (files viewed at same print/file size). Using in-camera NR I regularly shoot 600 JPGs to ISO Hi .7 (about 10,000) and it's quite amazing what the camera will produce. The 600 JPG engine is much better. I always considered the 700 to be a RAW only box.

A small detail never mentioned in this regard is that the "contrast" slider in the picture style menus is not disabled when you have ADL on, as it is with the 700. This means you can setup JPGs much more usefully in the 600.

For the tripod work I do the 600 Live View is also just much better.

The quieter shutter is a big plus.

U1/U2 are a big plus

I've not found the 600 build less durable in any actual way, the lighter body is nice, actually. I do miss the more direct 700 ergonomics, but am now used to the 600 button layout including assigning AF-on to the AF/AE-L button and moving exposure lock to one of the front buttons - works for me. The 600 with the Nikon grip works out to be nearly perfect for my hands handling my 14-24 - the gripped 700 always felt a little to large/heavy and the un-gripped 700 a little small for handling the 14-24.

I'd say about the only thing the 700 does better is obviously frame rate (if you have the grip) and the 51 pt system still has a bit of an edge tracking (but not hugely) - so the 700/grip is probably still a better high volume action camera, but that is not what I do, so there it sits - I should sell mine.

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ata3001
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Only image wise is it an upgrade.

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ranalli
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Re: For what it maybe worth...
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago

Rob Tomlin wrote:

Thanks for some excellent responses.

The way that I'm reading this is that I would get some benefits from the D610 over my D700, but I'd actually be taking a step backwards in a few areas as well.

Better dynamic range is certainly a plus that I would enjoy. More resolution would also be nice. Sounds like higher ISO performance is only slightly better. But to actually have a downgrade in AF ability (even if slight), and a consumer type of body instead of the pro feel of my D700, I'm thinking that upgrading to the D610 from my D700 doesn't make much sense.

I think this really goes to show what a breakthrough camera the D700 really was, given it's been on the market for more than 5 years.

If I'm going to upgrade, I'm probably going to need to look closer at the D800 despite the huge file sizes.

I think your assessment is really fair and makes it clear what an awesome camera the D700 was for it's time.  I own one and it is very easy to see why so many others LOVE this camera.  It is also clear to me why prices on the used market really haven't dropped a whole lot.  In short, used D700s are going for more than used D600s...and some of those D700s have been used heavily.

I bought mine used and the thing is a tank and always nails the shot.

That being said, I could not move to a D600; between the lack of AF point spread, AF speed, exposure bracketing frames to name a few things.  It does have pretty much the same fps as the D700 but to be honest if I had to choose between that and AF quality...I'd have to go with AF quality.

So that would leave me with the D800 that gives me everything the D700 has plus more...except for the fps speed.

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fotolopithecus
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to Rob Tomlin, 7 months ago
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Rob Tomlin
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Re: Is the D610 a Significant Upgrade Over a D700?
In reply to fotolopithecus, 7 months ago

fotolopithecus wrote:

http://blog.mingthein.com/2012/09/24/nikon-d600/

Wow.

That article pretty much answers every question that I could have regarding the D700 vs the D600 and D800.  It also confirms what I said earlier: the D700 was a true breakout camera when released, and it's rather amazing that it still holds up so well more than 5 years after release (an eternity for a digital device).

Thanks for the link!

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