Compared to...

Studio scene comparison (JPEG)

This is our standard studio scene comparison shot taken from exactly the same tripod position. Lighting: daylight simulation, >98% CRI. Crops are 100%. Ambient temperature was approximately 22°C (~72°F).

Nikon D3X vs Sony DSLR-A900

Camera settings:

  • Nikon D3X: Nikkor 85 mm F1.8D lens, Aperture Priority, ISO 100 (default base)
    JPEG Large/Fine, Manual WB, Default Parameters (Standard), Self-Timer
  • Sony DSLR-A900: Sony 85 mm F1.4 lens, Aperture Priority, ISO 200 (base)
    JPEG Large/Fine, Manual WB, Default Parameters (Standard), Self-Timer (auto MLU)
Nikon D3X
Sony DSLR-A900
7.3 MB JPEG (6048 x 4032)
6.1 MB JPEG (6048 x 4032)

This comparison is particularly interesting because both cameras use a sensor that is, according to Nikon, not identical but very similar. Nevertheless, looking at the images there are some visible differences. While the Sony A900 is certainly no slouch when it comes to pixel-level detail, the D3X output is visibly sharper without showing any obvious sharpening artifacts. This leads us to suspect that the two cameras use different anti-aliasing filters, the Sony's being slightly stronger. The Nikon's blacks are slightly more accentuated but otherwise the color and tonal characteristics are not too dissimilar. It's also worth noting that the Nikon's base ISO is 100, as opposed to 200 on the A900. Given the price difference the Sony is putting in a very strong performance, but it can't compete with the D3X's class-leading JPEG output.