Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.

Started Dec 25, 2013 | Discussions
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Len_Gee
Len_Gee Veteran Member • Posts: 9,322
Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S.   Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+.   Poor value for money spent.

Poor ergonomics.    Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

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(unknown member) Senior Member • Posts: 1,041
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
6

A Dud is in the eye of the beholder.

If she's looking for 'D4 sensor quality', then the camera is a bargain.

If she's looking for a deal, then look to the 610.

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lickity split
lickity split Senior Member • Posts: 2,777
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
3

Not going to say it's a dud,but if she wants a camera with video,pop-up flash,dual card slots maybe she should look elsewhere. Maybe the 610..  

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newlens Contributing Member • Posts: 617
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
1

Bruce Granofsky wrote:

If she's looking for a deal, then look to the 610.

Actually, if she is looking for a great deal, get a refurb (or mint) D600.  They are a bargain, IMHO.

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Fujifilm X100S Nikon D610
Mr Gadget Senior Member • Posts: 1,973
Well...
2

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

Given her lack of background in photography, her intended use, and cost, I would say that if she were my friend I would advise her to buy an X100s. Super image quality, retro style and fairly simple operation at half the price of a Df.

If she insists on a DSLR, and doesn't mind modern looks then she might be better served at looking at a D3200 kit. Just my two cents, but why would someone with no experience want to drop $2000-$3000+ on a FX DSLR? but then maybe she is considering it to be a Fashion statement.

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Conrad
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InTheMist
InTheMist Senior Member • Posts: 3,078
Not a dud.
3

I like the design, and the technology behind it is top almost.

I carried an x100s every day for six months, it made great images, but in the end, it was too slow for my style.

I've replaced it with a Dƒ as I have lots of Nikon lenses, and I wanted something smaller and classic. I really love it, having written reviews both here and on my blog, but it is NOT a good deal at nearly $3000, except the sensor, which is the same as the D4 (top level pro camera that costs twice as much). It's not at all as small as the x100s, but it's just much faster in all aspects of photography: starting, focusing, processing, shooting.

Image quality of the Dƒ is better, especially in low light. The focusing system is a step down from the professional cameras, but more than adequate (again, lots better than the x100s).

Size and price: x100s wins
Features, speed and image quality: Dƒ
Design: Salt and pepper to taste

They both look good, but the x100s feels cheaper in some ways. The Dƒ is not too heavy, and I think some people take that to feel cheap, but I consider it a benefit. The finish of the metal parts of the x100s and Dƒ are very similar, but once one looks at details, the Dƒ comes out on top. The x100s top knobs are a bit more polished from the usability standpoint, i.e. how to set shutter speed and aperture. From the back, controls and menu, the Dƒ wins hands down for quality feel and logic.

And don't forget, the x100s will never have another lens, with the Dƒ, you can use the whole stable of Nikon glass.

Neither of these are beginner cameras, and will take some learning.  The x100s may be a tiny bit simpler in overall operation for beginners, if that's important to you.

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Poweruser Contributing Member • Posts: 506
What do you want to hear?

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

Quite a jump from the S95. If she wants a DSLR, an entry level Canon would still do far more than the S95 at a fraction of the price of a full frame DSLR.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

True. So what?

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

Entry level EOS. Big jump in IQ while still not as intimidating as a "big gun".

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aka Pedro Valente

ultimitsu
ultimitsu Veteran Member • Posts: 6,623
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
1

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

X100s is a great camera for hobbyist, but would be a poor camera for a newcomer, if for no other reason than 35mm is a hard FOV to use correctly. In the hands of novice it could lead to all sorts of undesirable composition for portraits.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

I wouldn't call Df a dud, but these two reasons are fairly commonly accepted, albeit not universally.

People buy Df for its styling, extra 1/3 for stylez isnt really too much if you make a living in the fashion industry.

ravduc
ravduc Senior Member • Posts: 1,976
Re: What do you want to hear?
1

I have both of these cameras, the x100 and the DF. I think that from the information that you have provided, that she doesn't seem to have much experience with cameras. Both of these cameras are for more advanced amateurs or professionals. They are not cameras for beginners, and to appreciate them you need to have some understanding of the basics of photography as well as a need for high quality files.

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Tord S Eriksson
Tord S Eriksson Veteran Member • Posts: 6,176
Re: Well...
2

Mr Gadget wrote: (snip)

If she insists on a DSLR, and doesn't mind modern looks then she might be better served at looking at a D3200 kit. Just my two cents, but why would someone with no experience want to drop $2000-$3000+ on a FX DSLR? but then maybe she is considering it to be a Fashion statement.

The D5300 is much better camera than the D3200 — I used to own one — but I think the Df would have been my first choice for an upgrade (I got myself a D600, as the Df wasn't around yet).

Steve Huff writes than the image quality of the DF is the best he have seen, ever, not least in low light situations. So while it isn't the fastest camera in town, it is pretty impressive!

Your friend could do much worse than buy a DF, and I bet it will fetch a good price on the used market!

The lenses I recommend is the Sigma 35/1.4, and the Nikkor 85/1.8G, and then the lens that comes with the Df, that would be just fine!

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Mostly Nikon V1, & D600, user

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Nikonparrothead Veteran Member • Posts: 4,695
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.

So what doesn't the S95 do for her? It strikes me that neither the Df nor the X100S would be adequate replacements. She currently owns a stealth snap shooter with a modest zoom and manual control (but does she use it that way or on P?) She needs to put her camera choices in her hand. is she going for ooh shiny or improved photo quality? Another Canon or a one-inch sensor point and shoot like the Sony with a modest zoom may suit her better.

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Len_Gee
Len_Gee OP Veteran Member • Posts: 9,322
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
1

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

Thanks to all who have replied so far.

Just wanted to mention she is more of a fashionista, and concerned about how she would look with a cool retro-like camera when she is attending social events.

She's in her 20's and never shot film but thinks the Df looks like an old film Nikon F (?), and Fuji X100 look like Leica M3 (?). To her, both look "cool".

Maybe Fuji X100 is more suitable since it is cheaper than Df? I sirmise she doesn't know the difference would be since Df has better IQ than X100.

But she also expressed going further in the future with photography.

And yes, she is in the Fashion industry.  

Regards.

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Alpha Tech Regular Member • Posts: 406
Mannequins Approve Of The Df
2

Downtown mannequins everywhere are discussing the new Df. No serious fashionista should be without one.

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CeleryBeats
CeleryBeats Contributing Member • Posts: 780
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
2

I'll answer very honestly! The DF is not a dud.

It is good looking, not as big as people might think, feels really good in the hand and has nice controls.

AF is GOOD. Some people might clame otherwise. My honest view is that AF is capable and fast even in low light. Image quality is great as everyone knows.

Controls feel a bit plasticky and on the cheaper side, imo. Price is very high.

That brings me to my honest conclusion. I would from my deepest honest heart recommend the Fuji X100S to your friend for the type of shooting she'll be doing.

Why? Because it is almost 1/3 of the price, is more/very compact, has a great EVF that can be very usefull in many situations, amazing lens and has amazing image quality even compared to the DF/D4. Shooting social means people means needing great skintones and i believe fuji has an edge on any brand here. They are absolutely marvelous at that. AF is adequate, ergonomics great and the same external control flexibility like a DF.

Overall the fuji really is the more flexible and logical camera for what she is looking for imo.

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gotompoes Regular Member • Posts: 467
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.

If your friend is a designer he needs an inspiring camera. From the design point of view his choices are the Nikon DF, the Olympus E P5 or a Leica M.

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Len_Gee
Len_Gee OP Veteran Member • Posts: 9,322
Re: Mannequins Approve Of The Df

Alpha Tech wrote:

Downtown mannequins everywhere are discussing the new Df. No serious fashionista should be without one.

Yes.

Rachel has blue streaks in her hair.

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HSway
HSway Veteran Member • Posts: 3,091
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.
1

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

I think the camera could be a little better for what it costs or could cost a little less.

But it’s a unique design, and so the costs is hard to reason for everyone in that respect especially.

There are no duds among the new cameras. Duds are among us who use them.

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

It may well be the best camera she will ever have. It may well be the best camera line ever for her. It may well be one of her best friends in life. It may open doors for her she never knew about.

Go back then to her and ask about 'poor value' you read on the web; she may give you a long strange look.

and she may as well make a bad experience with it.

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

I'd say let her see them in flesh or at least some comparisons

http://j.mp/1cpehgq

One is smaller, less expensive, with 35mm equiv. lens, a fantastic tool; the other is a whole Nikon system, fantastic tool.

Ask her what she likes more.

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olyflyer
olyflyer Forum Pro • Posts: 23,953
Re: Mannequins Approve Of The Df

Alpha Tech wrote:

Downtown mannequins everywhere are discussing the new Df. No serious fashionista should be without one.

...that may very well be the case, but...

...what does this image proof other than you have some WB problems? Probably because you have used AWB that there is a yellow cast in the image, same as every other Nikon I know of is taking. No camera is perfect in AWB and the Df is no exception in this light.

Alpha Tech Regular Member • Posts: 406
Re: Mannequins Approve Of The Df

olyflyer wrote:

Alpha Tech wrote:

Downtown mannequins everywhere are discussing the new Df. No serious fashionista should be without one.

...that may very well be the case, but...

...what does this image proof other than you have some WB problems? Probably because you have used AWB that there is a yellow cast in the image, same as every other Nikon I know of is taking. No camera is perfect in AWB and the Df is no exception in this light.

WRONG.

This image captured the soft light in the way it was intended for the downtown display. I am NOT going to alter it for you or anyone else.

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olyflyer
olyflyer Forum Pro • Posts: 23,953
Re: Is the Df a dud? Friend wants to buy.

Len_Gee wrote:

Is Nikon grasping for straws with the Df?

No, but Nikon made a camera many wanted. A retro style niche camera for people who are interested in the design more than in the camera.

A non-geek friend who is a fashion designer is enamored with the retro styling , and Nikon imaging reputation.

She wants to upgrade from a Canon S95 P&S. Her choices are Nikon Df or possibly looking at Fuji X100s.

From the S95 I believe everything is an upgrade. I think a DSLR might be a huge step for her, but I might be wrong.

She will use for travel vacations , and social type photos.

Why not a mirrorless? Lighter, cheaper and many ways better for those purposes and they are also MILES ahead of the S95.

The reason I ask is because she researched a couple of online photo review sites that said the Df is a dud:

Reason:

Too expensive@ $2800+. Poor value for money spent.

Yes, the Df is far too expensive for what it does. She should wait until the summer, I think the prices will drop like a brick.

Poor ergonomics. Better to go with conventional Nikon DSLR (But she does not like the styling too much.)

Yes, in my opinion a proper DSLR has better ergonomics but if she wants o buy the best looking DSLR then the Df is the right camera. On the other hand, she sounds like she will need a pop-up flash now and then and the Df has none...

Thanks for any advice I can recommend to her.

Make her buy a mirrorless camera, I think that is the best for her. Good luck.

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