Does the D3x hold any advantage in performance or usability in comp to D800?

Started Oct 26, 2012 | Discussions
RodluvanII
OP RodluvanII Senior Member • Posts: 2,094
THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
1

Thank you for your thoughtful replies. As almost always, it will end up being a decision based on subjective values.

This is my situation now:

I have a D700 which is close to final call, I've had it repaired (shutter mech) and changed rubber grips twice, controls are worn out and over all it's worn. Sure it can work just fine for another few years, but it just as well can blow up tomorrow.

So I'm buying a new camera not only to upgrade, but to keep me running. The logical decision is to get the next D700 (the D800) or take advantage of all the used second best bodies out there (d3s - which hasn't dropped much in price or the d3x or even a better used D700).

People ask (almost provoked) why I feel 24Mpx is enough, but 36 too many. Well, first, I don't crop, or crop very moderately (call me dogmatic). Second, I don't print huge, so larger files is simply another way of saying slower files. There's always the argument that computers nowdays are so fast and memory so cheap. Well, it adds up! A new computer isn't cheap (for me), new memory cards aren't cheap (for me) etc. Also, with the D800 I'll need to buy a new type of card to use the dual slot!

The D3x is larger, however I will need a vertical grip making the D800 both more expensive, larger and heavier!

Hm, whichever way I go, I'll be uneasy.

And all this because they couldn't make a moderately resolution D800 instead if that monster

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primeshooter
primeshooter Veteran Member • Posts: 4,315
Re: All I know is
3

backayonder wrote:

That unless I make money from my photography, I just can't justify upgrading to a D800.

I think that 36mega pixels is an overkill when I feel that my D200 and D300s still take great pictures.

I prefer. How can I explain this honest pictures with a raw edge to them. All I am seeing from owners of the D800 are HDR type images which I am not a fan of. Each to their own I don't want to start a war, if that is what you like then so be it.

You aren't looking hard enough. There are many producing brilliant work. Check out Spencer Brown, stunning work with the D800 and a bunch of Zeiss primes. Then have a look at Moving comfort on here who is using alot of AF-D primes on the D800 and producing great results (dispelling the myth that old lenses cannot cope on the D800), then have a search on google for D800 landscape photography - some very talented folk out there. To generalize and think everyone is mainly producing HDR images is odd. Look further than this forum for a start. I wouldn't dispute the D300's ability to take great photos. No one is saying that. But the D800 is state of the art presently. Saying that, I won't upgrade next time as I have what I want now. Even with the D700 I felt limited by the dynamic range, I used grad nds constantly, now I just shadow pull and get everything I need, even into the sun and the colour produced by the sensor is incredible, AF better, resolution higher and it has video.

There is a thread elsewhere on this forum featuring mono images from Iceland taken with a D800, some taken at night they are excellent, no noise. That is where I can see why a D800 comes into it's own, low noise, low light. I just don't get this expensive camera being used to take plastic HDR images with no soul to them.

I'm sure your D3X will just do fine.

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primeshooter
primeshooter Veteran Member • Posts: 4,315
Re: Does the D3x hold any advantage in performance or usability in comp to D800?
3

anotherMike wrote:

The way I see your situation is actually quite simple: Get the D800 (or better yet, the 800E)

Why? You've spent quite a bit of money on all that Zeiss glass. Get the body that will actually let you see why you spent that money. As it stands now, you might put that fancy glass on a D3X and do really well, but someone with a D800E will do better. The extra resolution matters to those who look at the finer details and subtle aspects of things, and while getting everything "out" of a D800E takes a bit of effort, IMO it's worth it - and I just don't see why someone like yourself who probably does see the subtle things (or you wouldn't have spent all that money on your lens collection) would want to take third best (given I think both the D800 and D600 have better files than the D3X) right now. Just doesn't make sense to me. The extra processing time and disk requirements will long be forgotten once you start working magic with a D800/D800E file. Just one mans opinion. Good luck with your choice.

-m

Mike, what would you say to the comment made in this thread of someone trying to claim the colour on the D3x is "better" than the D800, AND the IQ! Seen this mentioned a few times. Talk about nonsense!

primeshooter
primeshooter Veteran Member • Posts: 4,315
Re: THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
2

RodluvanII wrote:

Thank you for your thoughtful replies. As almost always, it will end up being a decision based on subjective values.

This is my situation now:

I have a D700 which is close to final call, I've had it repaired (shutter mech) and changed rubber grips twice, controls are worn out and over all it's worn. Sure it can work just fine for another few years, but it just as well can blow up tomorrow.

So I'm buying a new camera not only to upgrade, but to keep me running. The logical decision is to get the next D700 (the D800) or take advantage of all the used second best bodies out there (d3s - which hasn't dropped much in price or the d3x or even a better used D700).

People ask (almost provoked) why I feel 24Mpx is enough, but 36 too many. Well, first, I don't crop, or crop very moderately (call me dogmatic). Second, I don't print huge, so larger files is simply another way of saying slower files. There's always the argument that computers nowdays are so fast and memory so cheap. Well, it adds up! A new computer isn't cheap (for me), new memory cards aren't cheap (for me) etc. Also, with the D800 I'll need to buy a new type of card to use the dual slot!

The D3x is larger, however I will need a vertical grip making the D800 both more expensive, larger and heavier!

Hm, whichever way I go, I'll be uneasy.

And all this because they couldn't make a moderately resolution D800 instead if that monster

All those expensive primes you bought and you want to stick it on the 24MP body and not the 36? I don't understand it but it's your money dude!

RodluvanII
OP RodluvanII Senior Member • Posts: 2,094
Re: THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
2

primeshooter wrote:

All those expensive primes you bought and you want to stick it on the 24MP body and not the 36? I don't understand it but it's your money dude!

And to think they developed and loved Leica lenses used on grainy 35mm film and still today use them on a 24Mpx cameras.

Resolution is but one aspect of lenses and medium. Perhaps you'll come to understand that one day

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primeshooter
primeshooter Veteran Member • Posts: 4,315
Re: THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
1

RodluvanII wrote:

primeshooter wrote:

All those expensive primes you bought and you want to stick it on the 24MP body and not the 36? I don't understand it but it's your money dude!

And to think they developed and loved Leica lenses used on grainy 35mm film and still today use them on a 24Mpx cameras.

Resolution is but one aspect of lenses and medium. Perhaps you'll come to understand that one day

Oh I do, I just don't get why you'd buy old tech that's used for probably only a little less than the D800, but fair game - it's your cash.

astralux Regular Member • Posts: 187
Re: THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
3

Go get the D3x, it will pleasantly surprise you. The are a lot of comments here about the D800 being superior based mostly on DXO numbers (which is based on questionable testing techniques), but that is mostly from folks who have never used a D3x extensively. It takes a while to get the best out of the D3x, but when you do, you will see why many pro's have stuck with the D3x after trying out the D800. Be aware though that the D3x is mostly aimed at the pro studio photographer and heavy usage and is not a carry around happy snappy camera as was the intention with the D800 (as proved by the inferior body and many production problems).

anotherMike Veteran Member • Posts: 8,687
Re: Does the D3x hold any advantage in performance or usability in comp to D800?
1

Regarding the color/IQ comments, it's subjective. I think personally what some folks are seeing is that the native color channel balances in the D800 (and also D600) are *different* than earlier cameras like the D3, D700, D3S, D3X, and that might be perceived as better.  Everyone has the right to their own opinion. Ironically color response was my biggest worry about the D800/E - I didn't want a D7000 sensor "super sized" with the same somewhat insipid color response. Thankfully the 800E turned out not to have any problems with color differentiation at least for the things I'm critical about (skin tones primarily).

-m

larrywilson
larrywilson Veteran Member • Posts: 5,888
Re: THANK YOU ALL! (and some clarifications)
3

Rodluvan statement to Primeshooter

And to think they developed and loved Leica lenses used on grainy 35mm film and still today use them on a 24Mpx cameras.

Resolution is but one aspect of lenses and medium. Perhaps you'll come to understand that one day

My answer

I totally agree with Rodluvan in the above statement.  Heck of a lot more to a camera then mega pixels.  Until a person has owned a certain professional camera such as the d3x, there is no way of knowing and comparing it with the d800.

Larry´╗┐

´╗┐

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RodluvanII
OP RodluvanII Senior Member • Posts: 2,094
RESULT!

Nothing I couldn't have done with the D700, I know, but never the less, here are two I took today with D3x + Zeiss 1.4/35

What was most apparent from the short time I could use it today, was the sound of the shutter which was much softer and pleasant. Firing the D700 off in the church made me feel the need for some immediate apologies.

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inasir1971
inasir1971 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,611
Re: RESULT!
1

I love the Zeiss 35/1.4 - probably my favorite out of all the Zeiss lenses.

Glad you're enjoying your new acquisition.

We all going to have different opinions about which products we like and we don't necessarily need to agree which is better - otherwise we would all be driving the same car and wearing the same shoes. As long as we are satisfied that what we have chosen fulfills our requirements, I don't think we need to go further.

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larrywilson
larrywilson Veteran Member • Posts: 5,888
Re: RESULT!
2

Did you get the d3x??????  If so, wonderful!!!!!  Nothing like holding a professional battery gripped camera.  I looked at buying a used d3x which many professionals still use with great success.  I instead bought the d4 because I shoot a lot of fast moving subjects.  Yes, I know folks, 16 mega pixels is no good for anything, oh well!!!!!

Anyway good choice for you I am sure, just get out there and shoot and enjoy.  I am sure as my now sold d3s and now the d4 which I have that the d3x will just get out of your way when capturing an image so that you can concentrate on the lighting and composition.

Larry

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RodluvanII
OP RodluvanII Senior Member • Posts: 2,094
Re: RESULT!
1

larrywilson wrote:

Did you get the d3x?????? If so, wonderful!!!!! Nothing like holding a professional battery gripped camera.

Yes, D3x, and yes, it feels roughed and ergonomic to boot.

Anyway good choice for you I am sure, just get out there and shoot and enjoy.

Thank you Larry, I will!

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RodluvanII
OP RodluvanII Senior Member • Posts: 2,094
Re: RESULT!
1

inasir1971 wrote:

I love the Zeiss 35/1.4 - probably my favorite out of all the Zeiss lenses.

Glad you're enjoying your new acquisition.

We all going to have different opinions about which products we like and we don't necessarily need to agree which is better - otherwise we would all be driving the same car and wearing the same shoes. As long as we are satisfied that what we have chosen fulfills our requirements, I don't think we need to go further.

All very true and valid points. Thanks Inasir.

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John M Roberts Senior Member • Posts: 2,476
Re: maljo

maljo@inreach.com wrote:

Since I got the D800/D800E twins I have not used the D3X once.

How long have you had the two and why both? Which do you use most and for what?

Thanks,

sjstremb
sjstremb Regular Member • Posts: 498
traded my D3x for a D800, my version
3

I'm late to this discussion but I'll weigh in anyway. I traded my D3x for a D800. I also have a D7000 that's been my second body (which I have kept).

When I first got the D800, I made some 17x24" prints (on my Epson 4900)and said, well, they are good, but really are they that much better? I'm not seeing it. I then made some 30x40" on my 9900, and saw, yes, there is some visible difference, but not like dramatic, I then made a 40x60 off the D800 files and WOW, you really see it, its amazing, the detail, just stunning, way beyond my P20 Phase back I used to use with a Hasselblad V system.

Now having said that, I do miss the bigger buffer of the D3x on some freelance jobs, I do NOT miss the heavy body at all. the D3x had really above and beyond battery life, the D800, its good enough, just pay attention and have a spare, but its not a deal breaker for me. The bigger files of the D800 over the D3x have created some issues, passing on files to clients, (I no longer deliver work on DVD's), but the bigger files are something to take into account with your workflow.

One last thing, one of the reasons I traded, and BTW I got a very good trade value for my D3x, was it was early in the game and I did not loose too much trading my 2 year old D3x, but I was concerned that the D3x would eventually really side in trade in value, especially with new models on the horizon like the D600, and yes, I have seen the value of used D3x's side here in the midwest, so for me it was looking down the road. I learned when I got out of the Hasselblad V system I had years ago and purchased a D2x that you have to know when to either hold the gear or dump it  & when you get the best market vaule for used gear as I do not hold bodies in particular a long time, lenses, and in particular, good glass, I think of more as a longer term investment.

I hope that helps.

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PatFahey Regular Member • Posts: 453
Re: Does the D3x hold any advantage in performance or usability in comp to D800?

primeshooter wrote:

Mike, what would you say to the comment made in this thread of someone trying to claim the colour on the D3x is "better" than the D800, AND the IQ! Seen this mentioned a few times. Talk about nonsense!

How long have you used the D800 and D3x side by side?

-Pat

RDMSguy Junior Member • Posts: 49
Re: Does the D3x hold any advantage in performance or usability in comp to D800?
1

The D3x has functional left AF point's as well.

Pradipta Dutta
Pradipta Dutta Veteran Member • Posts: 9,781
One major advantage of D3X over D800

In addition to sporting a much more robust body, the impact of mirror slap on D3X is handled much-much better compared to that on D800. This becomes very apparent when you shoot on a tripod at over 400mm for shutter speed between 1/50 to about 1/100 seconds.

It sounds like you got an excellent deal on a used D3X. Certainly a very good buy.

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aarif
aarif Veteran Member • Posts: 9,089
question for Larry

. I am sure as my now sold d3s and now the d4 which I have that the d3x will just get out of your way when capturing an image so that you can concentrate on the lighting and composition.

I still have the D3s and I'm scared to replace it with anything else specially for it's noise performance. So what do you think? I'm many interested to know the difference between the 2 from ISO 3200-12800.  from the tests it looks like the D3s has the edge to me but I can't be sure.

I have the D600 too but with all the hype about its noise performance I do prefer to use the D3s at 3200 and above, it has much more color noise and the colors also look poor in high ISO compared to the D3s that are much more pleasing

thanks

aarif

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