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Thread: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

  1. #1

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    D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Having worked with a D3 for quite some years and really happy with this "power tools". I now have the chance to consider a replecement.

    Given the option of choosing between a D4 and a D800E with a batterigrib. Putting aside the price, what would you consider.

    My Interests
    - Long lens, birds and wildlife (fast framerate)
    - PC lens, landscape
    - low light, people (robust to digital noise)
    - night photography
    - large prints 30x40cm - 3x1m (fair amount of pixels)

    My Non-interests
    - Video (absolutely no interest)
    - built-in hdr


    Central points
    D4: 16,2 mb.pix
    D800E: 36,3 mb.pix

    D4: ISO 100-12800
    D800E: ISO 100-6400

    D4: 11 pic/sec
    D800E: 4 pic/sec


    The D800E seems somewhat apealing, but if I'm already is doing 3x1m prints based on the D3 12,1mb.pix. What do I gain from the D800E and its 36,3 mb.pix?

    I'm not worried about moire effect. Can be troublesome to remove in port-processing, but you have many options avoiding it during the take. So that's not a worry.

    But how would systematically consider the choice between the D4 and the D800E?

    -- Søren

  2. #2

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    How about renting each for two days and comparing them for yourself in the situations you personally use them? Create an aggressive evaluation itinerary ahead of time and put them through the paces. I think there is just too much to compare and too much money at stake to rely on others opinions. Unless you already have a critic or mentor you fully trust for a recommendation then you have to do it yourself.

  3. #3

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Andrew, you're right about basing a decision like this on random opinions. It's a pretty god idea to prepare a test, rent the two bodies (when they're available) and then conclude from this.

    But perhaps someone has points on eg this amount og mb pixels. It sort of puzzles me. Would be an easy guideline -- the more pixels the better. But having worked with a 12,1 mb pixels and noise robust D3 for some years I'm not that sure on the more-is-better rule.

    But a good pragmatic solution to rent the two bodies for a day and run them through a test and then work through the results afterwards.

  4. #4

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Removing a double answer :-)

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Your list of interests doesn't include studio shooting so I'm wondering why you are going for the "E" version.

    Also, if you do have to rely on others opinions try to stick to ones that aren't reviews by people being paid to do so.

    http://nikonrumors.com/2012/02/08/ni...mparison.aspx/

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew1 View Post
    Your list of interests doesn't include studio shooting so I'm wondering why you are going for the "E" version.
    I have done a bit portrait work in studio, but it's not a big part of my work. Yes, perhaps this should be taken into consideration when thinking about D800 vs D800E.

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew1 View Post
    Also, if you do have to rely on others opinions try to stick to ones that aren't reviews by people being paid to do so.
    A bit sad, but actually a very good point. Some are paid and some write very polemic in order to get audience :-)

    I'm in a good position having decided to take my time evaluating this question.

  7. #7
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Hi Søren,

    Welcome to the CiC forums from me, I love spending other people's money

    OK; let's just list the differences (from the Nikon Rumors link), starting with the obvious;

    D800 bolded only for consistency.

    Resolution (given a good enough lens); D800 = 36MP, D4 = 16MP
    Memory cards (both have a slot for CF); D800 = SD/SDHC/ SDXC, D4 = XQD
    Frame Rate (if fast enough shutter speed); D800 = 4 fps, D4 = 10 fps
    Normal ISO ranges; D800 = 100 - 6400, D4 = 100 - 12800
    Max Extended ISO; D800 = 25600, D4 = 204800
    Built in Flash; D800 = Yes, D4 = No
    Flash modes; D800 = usual, D4 = adds "Auto FP High-Speed Sync" and "Slow rear-curtain sync"
    Batteries; D800 = EN-EL15, D4 = EN-EL18
    Price (in USD); D800 = 3000, D4 = 6000

    I won't compare weights and sizes, since I don't have them for a D800 with grip.

    Any help?

    FWIW;
    When the D4 was announced with 16MP, I was a bit surprised it was that low.
    When the D800 was announced with 36MP, I was a very surprised it was that high.
    Somewhere in the 20 - 25MP range is way more than adequate (and keeps them level with the competition)

    If money were no object, I'd go D4 for everything except the XQD and lack of flash, but they're probably sooo not relevant to many!
    Being a wildlife shooter, I'd love the iso range and fps of the D4, but not the effect of FF on my lenses (with either).

    Good luck,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 9th March 2012 at 06:36 PM.

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Thanks for your replies.

    It will be interesting to see some samples from the D4 and D800. To me especially some low light samples.

    This high pixel volume of the D800 have made me think of what you gain from this large amount of pixels.

    The good thing is that we/I have some time to think. None of the cameras is available yet.

    Once more, thanks for your input and answers.

    -- Søren

  9. #9

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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Was visiting my local dealer to day. Looked at an D3x.

    I started out considering a D800(E) versus a D4. If video is of absolute no interest to me, could a D3x be a choice to consider.

    My needs are still a bit spread between fast shooting speed, noise robustness and high resolution.
    I know that at some point there will probably be an D4x, but that just a part of the ongoing proces.

    Have any of you experience with D3x as goes for noise robustnes at high iso/low light?
    I know that it have some resolution power and a bit slow shooting rate. But what about the noise robustness?

  10. #10
    Momo's Avatar
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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Here's a wild thought... how about neither camera? Seriously. I read this blog post a while back about DSLRs and the new translucent mirror systems. IMHO, I think Trey has a good point in that the DSLR is going the way of the dinosaur. You mention you want a fast framerate. Well, some of the TSLRs that are out now have a framerate so fast it may as well be shooting a movie. I'm talking 15-20+ FPS. The "flippy" mirror is so archaic.

    As for me, I am just sitting back waiting to see what Nikon introduces in the way of a TSLR. Just food for thought... if you don't need to upgrade right now.

  11. #11
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    Re: D4 versus D800E - What to consider

    Quote Originally Posted by Momo View Post
    Here's a wild thought... how about neither camera? Seriously. I read this blog post a while back about DSLRs and the new translucent mirror systems. IMHO, I think Trey has a good point in that the DSLR is going the way of the dinosaur. You mention you want a fast framerate. Well, some of the TSLRs that are out now have a framerate so fast it may as well be shooting a movie. I'm talking 15-20+ FPS. The "flippy" mirror is so archaic.

    As for me, I am just sitting back waiting to see what Nikon introduces in the way of a TSLR. Just food for thought... if you don't need to upgrade right now.
    Hi Darren,
    My only thoughts there are that it's another 2 glass surfaces for the light to travel through and worse, the plane of these is going to be at 45 degrees to the focal plane.
    Why not abandon the mirror altogether and project the image on a small LCD (as you do with Live View) in the viewfinder?

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