D200 Guy seeks input from D800 Owners...

Started Nov 10, 2012 | Discussions thread
Robin Casady Forum Pro • Posts: 12,898
Re: Mid-Course Correction...

Old Ed wrote:

Old Ed wrote:


I want to go FX soon. The question is: D600 or D800.

That's a question for me. I wasn't asking for suggestions.

Very confusing when you post a question and it isn't meant to be answered by forum members. I suppose you meant something like, "I'm still debating D600 vs. D800, but I'll sort that part out. What I really want to know is..."

The D600 price advantage matters to me. So does the D600 weight advantage. And I am scared spitless of those 36mp file sizes. So the D600 would seem a no-brainer.

But wait, not so fast. DX lenses look ugly through the D600 finder. I heard somewhere that the D800 finder masks down to DX when using those lenses. True or False?

The answer here is that the D800 turns on viewfinder lines to indicate the FOV in use, but does not mask out-of-frame areas.

Also, I know that the D800 can shoot lower mp images. But I don't know whether the D800 is just throwing away pixels in those modes, or making good use of all pixels through some kind of averaging or binning. Could someone please tell me? I wouldn't feel at all bad shooting lower-mp-but-lower-noise images while saving up for my 100 TB supercomputer.

I am surprised that no one (so far) seems to understand this question. I am not referring to pixels cropped out in the 5:4, "1.2," or DX modes. I think everyone understands they get dumped. Neither was I referring to the amount of JPEG compression.

I was asking what happens to the "extra" pixels in the "M" and "S" modes. For example, the FX "M" mode is 5520 X 3680 pixels, or about 20 mp. The FOV is the same as the full resolution ("L") FX mode, so it is not a "crop" in the ordinary sense.

My question is, are those "extra" 16 mp used for something, or just dumped? They could be binned or averaged, for example. That would reduce per-pixel noise.

I believe the smaller JPEG sizes S&M are created by downsizing the image similar to the way Photoshop downsizes.

To add an editorial comment, it seems to me that buying either an D600 or a D800 for small or medium JPEGs is like buying a 10 ton truck for picking up two bags of groceries at the local market. If you aren't planning to shoot RAW, I think you don't really need FX.

I also see the 4:5 aspect ratio choices as a huge advantage. (3:2 is nasty to my eye, and losing the 3:2 "shoulders" would be a perfect way to lose some unwanted mp.) Can anyone comment on whether 4:5 works well? And does it mask the finder in some way?

Finder question is answered above.

Also a good way to deal with lenses that are not sharp in the corners.

Lastly, I wasn't too happy with the recently published D600 "teardown." It's construction seems more unserviceable/disposable than I'd like. I'd like to believe that the D800 is more serviceable, not just heavier. Does anyone know? Has anyone seen a D800 "teardown?"

Nothing yet...

Not sure what you want here. Pretty much nothing is user-serviceable when replacing parts. NikonUSA wont sell you parts. They wont even sell them to independent repair shopts. New policy; probably aimed at cutting down grey market sales.

Perhaps you are asking if the D600 has a lower threshold to where it becomes irreparable. I don't know, but doubt there is much difference.

Or, perhaps you are asking if the D600 is built of larger modules and therefore is more expensive to repair. I don't know, but doubt there is much difference. On the D800, scratching the AA filter on the sensor (not easy to do, it is made of very hard material) requires complete replacement of the sensor.

Build differences in the consumer, prosumer, and pro level bodies generally come down to durability and possibly precision. The D800 has a magnesium mirror box. The D600 has a plastic (composite?) mirror box. I would guess that magnesium provides a more rigid and more rugged box. Otherwise, their wouldn't be any point in going to the extra expense for magnesium.

Other D800 pluses include more/better controls, USB3, and maybe a few more. So the D800 is definitely in the hunt.

Yes, I'm aware of the whole left-AF issue, and Nikon's poor response. But I don't know whether there is any hard evidence that this problem is resolved in current production. Do any of you know? (Guessing won't help me.)

Nothing yet... (Having read a lot of credible sources on this, I'm convinced this problem is real. That's not the same thing as saying every camera produced exhibits the problem.)

The only thing you will be able to find is anecdotal and hearsay evidence. A few people have reported that Nikon Service centers have returned cameras with the problem fixed. Others are still complaining. There have been some statements that current production cameras do not have this problem. However, who could say if the pipline has been cleared yet?

I bought my D800E in May and it did not have the left AF problem.

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