Help her decide Df or D800?

Started Dec 31, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Len_Gee Veteran Member • Posts: 9,686
Help her decide Df or D800?


A friend wants to buy a new camera to replace Nikon 5200. She shoots mainly action sports like tennis, soccer, volleyball, track and field. She wants to eventually shoot live theater and music concerts. She's not a pro, just an aspiring enthusiasts. Not tech oriented. Mostly shoot on Aperture Priority. Needs simple to get at controls, not too much menu system to access.

She's narrowed down her choices to Df or D800 because of their reputed stellar high ISO performance in low light, excellent fast AF, and Nikon D4 sensor technology.

We went to a camera store and she tried both out for their AF, ergonomics, logical placement of controls, and ease of use.

Both cameras had the normal lenses. Cameras set on Aperture Priority mode. Tried both single shot and continuous focus modes.

She " thought " the D800 focused faster, but liked that the most used setting's were dials on the Df., though she said they felt "clunky" (?).

Pictures looked about the same though.

For those who own the Df:

  1. How do you find the Df AF focus in good daylight? Compared to D800/D800e?
  2. How do you find the Df AF focus in low light, for example, in a typical live theater or concert venue?
  3. How do you like the placement of most common controls, like the dials? Do they make sense to you?
  4. Is it easy to quickly make common adjustments like Auto ISO, Exposure Compensation, AWB, and switch shooting modes PASM? Without diving into the menus?
  5. Is the menu system easy, or has multiple layers to go through?
  6. How have you set the fn functions?
  7. Anything you don't like on the Df vs. D800/d800e? Can, or should be fixed in a firmware update? Anything that don't make sense?

What made you choose Df instead of D800/D800e?

Is the Df a better overall camera than the D800 for shooting sports and wedding work?

Which camera do you recommend for my friend? Df or D800? Both seem to have similar IQ.

Thanks for any advice you can give her.

 Len_Gee's gear list:Len_Gee's gear list
Sony RX100 Fujifilm X100T Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 Olympus PEN-F +8 more
Nikon D4 Nikon D800 Nikon Df
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