Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

Started Feb 13, 2015 | Discussions
Peter K Burian
Peter K Burian Regular Member • Posts: 162
Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

If you shoot in RAW capture mode, it should be easy to correct color balance, in a non-destructive environment. Surely this would make the D810A suitable for all purpose photography. (For shooters who cannot afford a camera strictly for astrophotography.)

I have posed this to Nikon and am awaiting their reply.

Nikon D810A
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jefenniejr Regular Member • Posts: 313
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

Seems to me that the 810a is a real niche product and that someone who shoots say, 80-90% regular daylight or studio lit subjects would be better off with a d810. Conversely the astrophotographer who occasionally wants a snapshot would shoot in RAW on a d810a and adjust in PP accordingly.

But I am guessing, as I haven't shot with either camera.

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just Tony
just Tony Senior Member • Posts: 2,952
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)
4

It's not going to be as simple as a color balance effect which by definition affects the entire spectrum. The change isn't even as simple as a reduced attenuation effect across the red section of the spectrum. It's an extension of the red sensitivity range to wavelengths that are recorded in a weak way or not at all in the standard D810. The main result is that some red subjects could be recorded very differently, and there might be no change at all to greens or blues. Merely suppressing red in a D810A image would also have the effect of darkening oranges and yellows.

A lot of the difference could be mitigated via a custom color profile. That would make standardized color patches (as in a ColorChecker) match better, but there are many possible hues in subjects that aren't found on the patches. I would expect that it could be challenging to get an exact color match in some reds. "Close enough" for some purposes may be possible.

inasir1971
inasir1971 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,708
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

This is about the differences between the Canon 60D and 60Da which is their astro version:

http://www.astropix.com/HTML/I_ASTROP/EQ_TESTS/60Da_60D_550Da.HTM

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chillils New Member • Posts: 13
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

Head over to nikon rumors dot com.    There is a post saying it is not suitable for general photography straight from nikon.

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MOD TOF guy Forum Pro • Posts: 15,854
Exactly

just Tony wrote:

It's not going to be as simple as a color balance effect which by definition affects the entire spectrum. The change isn't even as simple as a reduced attenuation effect across the red section of the spectrum. It's an extension of the red sensitivity range to wavelengths that are recorded in a weak way or not at all in the standard D810.

Exactly ! In a regular camera there is an attempt through the Bayer filter to match the camera sensitivity to different wavelengths with that of the human eye.

This is not the case with the D810A.

The main result is that some red subjects could be recorded very differently,

Or subjects which reflect red light, among other wavelengths.

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karl k Contributing Member • Posts: 817
From Nikon: D810A is NOT recommended for ALL purpose photography!!

from Nikon D810A press release:

  • *The D810A is a digital SLR camera designed exclusively for astrophotography. When shooting under light sources with a significant amount of near-infrared wavelengths, or capturing common subjects exhibiting high reflectance at near-infrared wavelengths, resulting images may exhibit an unusually red cast. Because an appropriate color reproduction cannot be obtained, this model is not recommended for general photography.
Marianne Oelund Veteran Member • Posts: 7,788
It will be hit or miss
2

Peter K Burian wrote:

If you shoot in RAW capture mode, it should be easy to correct color balance, in a non-destructive environment. Surely this would make the D810A suitable for all purpose photography. (For shooters who cannot afford a camera strictly for astrophotography.)

You are cautioned not to leap to such a conclusion.  There are very good reasons why the cameras have IR-block filters, rather than relying on post-process adjustments.

In general, correcting color balance isn't that simple.  More often than not, you can obtain an acceptable result, but there are certainly exceptions where not all of the hues can be recovered.

In daylight, you might be fairly safe, but under warm lighting such as incandescent, expect some difficult problems.  I own the 60Da and have experimented with it for general photography, but found the red color shift to be very obvious; I would not use it even for casual photography.  The D810A may have even higher sensitivity to far red than the 60Da.

An IR-block filter such as the X-Nite CC1 will work much better than color adjustment in post.

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Ernie Misner
Ernie Misner Veteran Member • Posts: 6,752
Re: It will be hit or miss

The base ISO for the "a" is 200, compared to 64 with the standard model, right?   Shooting mainly landscapes and some long exposures that would be a deal breaker for me.

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jtra Contributing Member • Posts: 960
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

Peter K Burian wrote:

If you shoot in RAW capture mode, it should be easy to correct color balance, in a non-destructive environment. Surely this would make the D810A suitable for all purpose photography. (For shooters who cannot afford a camera strictly for astrophotography.)

D810a is 2EV (4x) more sensitive to red, it will overexpose it more so to compensate for normal photography, it will meter 2EV less compared to D810.
That will leave you with 2EV less DR in blue and green channels for low ISO operation. For high ISO you can rely on ISO-less nature of sensor.

Bernard Delley Senior Member • Posts: 1,501
Re: 810A leans toward false color rendition

Marianne Oelund wrote:

An IR-block filter such as the X-Nite CC1 will work much better than color adjustment in post.

excellent specific proposition !

This is a camera with greatly enhanced near infra red sensitivity, it has similar charms end effect like using infrared films. The 810A might be considered with artistic intent.

In normal photography, a dramatic increase in color metamerism. Tha is perceptually different color map to the same raw RBG values. (it already well known that deep red LED's  and stop lights are not well differentiated from orange, they look the same in the image). This cannot be fixed in color management. For exacting color differentiation say in art reproduction, the color patches need to be fixed using masking in PS.

Here is an example of failed color rendition, done with Nikon D90 long ago in daylight through the window. These begonias were deep dark red (carmine), the pot was glazed orange much brighter than the flowers, the ribbon Christmas red.These three colors appear very close in the image. --The cushions are rendered reasonably accurately. The white candle wax show that the WB is OK.

Bernard Delley Senior Member • Posts: 1,501
Re:IR block filter withourt and with

Marianne Oelund wrote:

Peter K Burian wrote:

If you shoot in RAW capture mode, it should be easy to correct color balance, in a non-destructive environment. Surely this would make the D810A suitable for all purpose photography. (For shooters who cannot afford a camera strictly for astrophotography.)

You are cautioned not to leap to such a conclusion. There are very good reasons why the cameras have IR-block filters, rather than relying on post-process adjustments.

In general, correcting color balance isn't that simple. More often than not, you can obtain an acceptable result, but there are certainly exceptions where not all of the hues can be recovered.

In daylight, you might be fairly safe, but under warm lighting such as incandescent, expect some difficult problems. I own the 60Da and have experimented with it for general photography, but found the red color shift to be very obvious; I would not use it even for casual photography. The D810A may have even higher sensitivity to far red than the 60Da.

An IR-block filter such as the X-Nite CC1 will work much better than color adjustment in post.

googling after this filter got this example of what to expect with the 810A

IR unfiltered and filtered example

Jonathan Siegel Contributing Member • Posts: 519
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

Sorry, going to be a little cynical here. I think there's a common misconception with buying anything expensive, anything at all, that the more expensive it is, the better it is. Thus if the D810A costs more than the D810, there are certainly going to be people out there who will buy it thinking it's on an even higher level than the D810 and find themselves back here on the forums complaining about getting strange results from the camera. It's inevitable. This is a *very* niche product. Nice of Nikon to build this, then again it would be nice of them to build a camera for left handed people too.

primeshooter
primeshooter Veteran Member • Posts: 5,898
Re: Nikon D810A for ALL purpose photography? (RAW capture mode)

If you shoot in RAW capture mode, it should be easy to correct color balance, in a non-destructive environment. Surely this would make the D810A suitable for all purpose photography. (For shooters who cannot afford a camera strictly for astrophotography.)

I have posed this to Nikon and am awaiting their reply.

Nikon state it's only for astrophotography not general photography.
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