D4 or D800E for birds?

Started May 7, 2014 | Discussions thread
Lance B Forum Pro • Posts: 30,699
Re: Might be a lot to expect for $1069

jamesg28 wrote:

Thanks Lance for your opinion.

Glad to help.

Your friend must have high standards to have been unhappy with a D4

He rented the D4 for a specific task. He went to far north Queensland (Australia) to shoot the kingfishers that inhabit the (very dark ) rainforests there and wanted something with better low light ability (specifically over ISO6400) than the D800. Yes, the low light ability was a stop better but the AF was not really any better under those circumstances. Even the fact that the D4 had higher FPS was not a benefit as the keeper rate was no better, ie the AF didn't snag any more focused shots in a burst than his D800 did even though the D800 was only 4fps compared to the D4's 10(?) or whatever. He tested and compared the D4 to his D800 under good lighting conditions as well and was a little underwhelmed.

However, after the release of the D4s and doing some testing with that camera, he found it to be what the D4 should have been. AF was unbelievably fast and accurate and after trying it myself, I have to agree, quite an amazing camera to say the least. Not only that, but the high ISO ability is far superior to the D4 and therefore the D800. What I would shoot at ISO6400 you can do with the D4s at ISO25600 and maybe more but the fall off in IQ over that ISO is a tad less than the fall off from the D800.

The whole functionality of the D4s is blindingly fast and as solid as a house brick, but then you'd expect it to be at twice the price!

However, even though the D4s is such a brilliant camera, I would still stay with my D800E for birds.

 Lance B's gear list:Lance B's gear list
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