On Why the D850 is Revolutionary

Started Aug 12, 2017 | Discussions thread
Tord S Eriksson
Tord S Eriksson Forum Pro • Posts: 10,787
Re: Camera = evolutionary . . . Images = revolutionary?

Bill Ferris wrote:

TacticDesigns wrote:

michaeladawson wrote:

TacticDesigns wrote:

On the surface, it might seem the camera is an evolutionary development in the D8x0 series.

But . . . will the images out of it be revolutionary?

I look back at my Nikon D70s and compare it to my current Nikon D750.

They look pretty similar. And I can see how the D750 kinda evolved out of it.

But . . . I think of the silly things I do with the D750 and still get great pictures, like single hand holding the camera, shooting in low light with an f/2.8 zoom and simply and conveniently walking away with lots of keepers.

You skipped a lot of cameras between the D70 and the D750. If you compare those two cameras I'm sure the D750 may appear as "revolutionary" using your terms.


Fair enough.

But, even if I add in the D90 and D7000 I had in between, I still look at the cameras and still might get the feeling from the cameras themselves that it is "just" an evolutionary progression . . .

But the images that I have gotten out of each successive model is where the real proof of the advancement is IMHO.

So, not that whether the dSLR gets a hybrid viewfinder or not.

It's what can you get out of this new camera that was either not possible or harder to do compared to the previous model (or models before.)

Take care & Happy Shooting!

My Nikon DSLR progression has been D70 - D90 - D600/610. The move from the D90 to the D600 is what I would describe as revolutionary.

The revolutionary technology change was going from a APS-C sensor camera to full frame. Yes, both formats had been long-established when I made the change. However, the D600 was my first full frame body. From my perspective as a photographer who'd never shot anything more advanced than a 12MP DX sensor body, I may as well have been the first person to shoot with a 24MP full frame sensor having nearly 12 stops of dynamic range.

The revolutionary impact was on how I did photography. At that time, I was primarily a landscape photographer. I frequently used HDR techniques in the field in tandem with Photomatix in post. After getting the D600, I was able to capture so much data in a single exposure that I soon stopped using Photomatix. I would often get very satisfying results processing just a single exposure. Sometimes, I would blend two or three exposures as layers in Photoshop. I had always leaned toward a more natural look, even with my HDR work. The performance of the D600 sensor allowed me to achieve images I couldn't have imagined with the D90. It was a total game-changer for me.

The D600 also opened new doors to me. I started doing wildlife, bird and sports photography. Eventually, wildlife and bird photography shared equal status alongside landscape as my favorite genres. Shooting at fast shutter speeds with high ISO delivered perfectly usable images. These revolutionary changes (for me) in both my photographic technique and interests were made possible by a revolutionary change in technology: APS-C to full frame.

Looking at the D850 on paper, I see an evolutionary change in technology; not a revolutionary change. The sensor will capture just as much light as my D610 with every exposure. The dynamic range will probably be about the same; perhaps a skosh higher. The resolution will be significantly improved, as well the autofocus performance, the burst rate and video capabilities.

If I were to buy this camera, it would be with the hope of significantly enhancing my keeper rate for wildlife, birds and the bit of sports photography I do. I don't forsee it suddenly changing how I shoot or what I shoot. The D850 certainly may expand when I shoot - adding 15-30 minutes at twilight to the time the camera is able to acquire focus and (at ISOs of 6400+) deliver pleasing images - but opening the doors of new genres of photography...not so much.

Is that revolutionary or evolutionary? I hope to find out, first hand.


What a delightful summing of your walk through cameradom (if there is such a word).

While having some formal training in my youth, I got back into (digital) photography by a Pentax K-x, as I wanted to have a DSLR for my son's wedding, but as I went down with typhoid fever I missed most of it.

Burt anyway, I had some money and via the much liked K-7 I ended up with a K-5 (very similar to a D7000), but it had an awful AF sensor (like many Pentax cameras after it).

Anyway, I gave a Nikon 1 V1 (thanks to Steve Huff for the inspiration!) to my wife, who returned it and got an E-M5 instead.

Since that day I've been a Nikon 1 fan, although I do have a Ricoh GR, that pretty soon got complimented by a D600. I love that camera, even after the oil problem, which it had.

As my new J5 didn't work with any big lenses, I eventually got a D3300 for my Sigma 150-600 Sports, but that's another story!

Since then that simple D3300 has probably been used more than all my Nikon 1 cameras together, and my number of Sigma lenses is constantly increasing! Still, the D600 is the champ, and will continue to be so for a long time to come!

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Tord_2 (at) photographer (dot) net
Mostly Nikon V1, V2, J5, & D600, user

 Tord S Eriksson's gear list:Tord S Eriksson's gear list
Olympus C-8080 Wide Zoom Ricoh GR Nikon 1 V1 Nikon D600 Nikon 1 V2 +25 more
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