Most helpful positive review
478 of 494 people found the following review helpful
A clear improvement over the already excellent D700
on April 10, 2012
I know that the D800 is not really the replacement model over the D700. Nevertheless, it did replace my old D700 and the D800 is, I believe, better suited for my photographic needs than the D700, i.e., studio, portraits, and landscape.
The D700 was and still is an outstanding DSLR. The D800 is of course better, but in a very perceptible way, which was quite a surprise to me.
I have done over 5000 shots since my purchase on 24 March. So far, no issues to report: no green cast from the LCD and no problems with the CLS system.
Nikon has really outperformed with this new DSLR and the clear improvements are:
- Much improved Dynamic Range, which was my main problem since my first DSLR
- Better colors straight off the camera: deeper and richer
- Better AF in low light ***UPDATE*** After comparing with older Nikon DSLRs, this improvement is minor and only perceptible on cross-type AF points.
- Highly detailed photographs at full res, 100% magnification and also when down-scaling the photos.
Let's not forget a proper and useable HD video feature at broadcasting quality. ***UPDATE*** Perhaps not broadcasting quality, but close enough.
On the negative side (there has to be some):
- The zoom in and zoom out buttons are reversed from the old models, which is now more logical, but I am used to the old wrong way! it's a minor problem of course.
- D4 has backlit buttons, why not on the D800? This can't be that expensive to include.
- Very expensive Battery pack, this is a major drawback for me. But yes, the D800 is well priced at $3000. I just hate ridiculously priced accessories.
- still wonder the point of having 1 CF slot and 1 SD slot. 2 CF slots would have been superb. But I guess if you come from a SD card DSLR, that would be practical for you.
- Left AF points can suffer from front/back focusing issues on wide angle lenses, but this can be fixed at a Nikon repair center under warranty ***UPDATE***
One crucial point that has to be considered when acquiring a 36MP DSLR: storage will be an issue. I just purchased a 4TB ext hard drive. A 14-bit RAW file (uncompressed) coming from the D800 will average 75MB.
I just shot a wedding, and I consider the D800 to be an excellent choice for the job. All the complains about shots being more blurry at 100% magnification are irrelevant. One has to be precise with his/her settings, at the right exposure and optimal shutter speed, results can be absolutely mind-blowing. And since most won't need 36MP for wedding photographs, down-scaling images will certainly eliminate slight camera-shake or noise.
One particular aspect that I appreciate is that my Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G is now tack-sharp at f/1.4. I had a front focusing issue with my old D700 even with the fine-tune option set to max. Since I'm no techie geek, I still don't understand why the D700 gave me problems with the 85mm.
Anyway, I used to be one of those people saying that digital photography will never replace film photography. The D800 has changed all that.