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Archive 2012 · D4 vs D800
  
 
DaveOls
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p.2 #1 · D4 vs D800


JTS1

What, they've already come out with the D809 and skipped the D400 again. NUTZ!



Nov 06, 2012 at 12:51 PM
colincarter46
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p.2 #2 · D4 vs D800


JTS1 wrote:
Obviously you only have a D800 and not a D4. The D4 is the flagship for a reason, not just for sports. Shoot one for some time and you will see that the D4 is the daily camera and the D809 is for those special, mega-print shots.


thats your opinion, and dont make assumptions about me owning only one of them.

i tried both and kept the D800, the D4 was too much like my D3, whereas the D800 jumps into another league IQ wise.

there is nothing, apart from sports, that the D4 does better than the D800 unless you are a "spray and pray" shooter relying on the camera rather than any skill to capture the moment?

I have friends who have kept both and, apart from field sports, the D4 stays on the shelf.




Nov 06, 2012 at 12:57 PM
colincarter46
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p.2 #3 · D4 vs D800


xaradaisy wrote:
They are both wonderful but the reasons I am leaning towards the D4 are:

1) Its bigger but it feels great in hands. Ergonomics of D4 is fantastic. D800 does not feel as comfortable in my hands.

2) While the D800 has better dynamic range at base ISO, D4 has better dynamic range otherwise.

3) I find D4's 1 button 100% view very helpful

4) Better ISO performance of the D4.

5) I find that I get more in-focus shots with my D4 than the D800. It is a more forgiving camera.

6) 17MP just feels right. 36MP is great for cropping but you have to
...Show more

the D800, being harder to shoot, is a myth. Its no harder to shoot than any other full frame camera.



Nov 06, 2012 at 12:59 PM
LivLif
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p.2 #4 · D4 vs D800


This is the bottom line.

The only benefits of the D4 are ergonomics, frames per second and just slightly better hi-iso. Otherwise the D800 is the better camera. The only downside to the D800 is ergonomics. With the cost of hard drives and memory cards these days, file size really isn't an issue.

I use both daily.



Nov 06, 2012 at 03:14 PM
xaradaisy
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p.2 #5 · D4 vs D800


colincarter46 wrote

the D800, being harder to shoot, is a myth. Its no harder to shoot than any other full frame camera.


That might very well apply to you and your technique, however, it might not apply to everyone. Some people might not have the best of techniques or they might be more prone to shaky hands than others.



Nov 06, 2012 at 04:00 PM
RRRoger
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p.2 #6 · D4 vs D800


xaradaisy wrote:
That might very well apply to you and your technique, however, it might not apply to everyone. Some people might not have the best of techniques or they might be more prone to shaky hands than others.quote<<<

I agree, it took me a month to dial in my D800.
Both my hand holding technique and settings had to be changed.
When I picked up the D4 (they came in the same day) I started shooting keepers immediately.
Nearly all my D800 images were blurry.
Three months later my D800 images are very much improved and for the price and weight differences I feel I made
...Show more



Nov 06, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Frank_Maiello
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p.2 #7 · D4 vs D800


colincarter46 wrote:
the D800, being harder to shoot, is a myth. Its no harder to shoot than any other full frame camera.


Well sure, it isnít technically harder to use, but it is obviously more challenging to maximize the performance of a higher-resolution camera. Based on my present habits with a D700, I would have to be more conservative and/or cautious in my choice of shutter speed and aperture. Thatís essentially ďharder," assuming the reason I'd want a D800 is for its high performance characteristics.



Nov 06, 2012 at 04:36 PM
colincarter46
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p.2 #8 · D4 vs D800


Frank_Maiello wrote:
Well sure, it isnít technically harder to use, but it is obviously more challenging to maximize the performance of a higher-resolution camera. Based on my present habits with a D700, I would have to be more conservative and/or cautious in my choice of shutter speed and aperture. Thatís essentially ďharder," assuming the reason I'd want a D800 is for its high performance characteristics.


sorry but i dont agree.

you dont need different shutter speeds or apertures to shoot the same scene, over what you would have used with say a D3.



Nov 06, 2012 at 04:54 PM
Frank_Maiello
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p.2 #9 · D4 vs D800


colincarter46 wrote:
sorry but i dont agree.

you dont need different shutter speeds or apertures to shoot the same scene, over what you would have used with say a D3.


I'm starting with the consideration that the goal is to maximize the camera's performance. Only if that's not the case would I agree.

With my 12MP camera, I can often get away with marginal focal length/shutter speed combinations that do not cause blur on a level that can be recorded by the sensor. However, if the resolving power of the sensor is increased, and assuming the lens is up to the job, there is a greater chance for the sensor to record the blurring effect of camera movement. Likewise with a 12MP camera, I can stop the aperture down further before the effects of diffraction are recorded by the sensor. Both of these cases would represent a failure to maximize the camera's performance.

If you don't agree, what's the basis for your argument?



Nov 06, 2012 at 05:12 PM
chip_master
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p.2 #10 · D4 vs D800


I have to say I don't print very often, but finally broke down and printed some of my favorites 16x20, almost all shot with D700. I later upgraded to d3s, than D4 and I recently added the D600.

I have a 16x20 slightly cropped with my old 70-200VRI, every blade of grass in focus got pop. Now I'm sure with perfect technique and setup with D800 or D600 I wouldn't have come close. Why you might ask because the prints / shots that are my most treasured are all action where focus, FPS, etc. are critical. There was never a doubt for me that D4 was going to be it. D800 while spectacular for detail was too sluggish. I probably come home with as much total bytes 10-11FPs versus 1/3 of that if I shot D800, but when sort thru what the D4 will bring home it will be

I see a lot of nice pictures on D800, some argue that the extra pixels make up for $$$$ for the big 2.8s but I also notice how many don't capture "the moment" either. I agree if you don' have the budget go lots of pixels and crop.



Nov 06, 2012 at 07:59 PM
 

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Rodolfo Paiz
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p.2 #11 · D4 vs D800


How easily some of you get sidetracked into camera wars.

To answer the OP's question: IMHO, visible differences in image quality will begin to appear at around 16x20. That assumes an uncropped image (so you get the full 16MP the D4 can deliver), and low ISO (so the D800 is not noise-hampered), a reasonable viewing distance, and an image that is not so full of intricate detail as to challenge the resolution of either sensor. Assuming all of those things, a D4 can print 16x20 at 200 dpi without interpolation, and at normal/comfortable viewing distances it'll look beautiful.

But I would say that first and foremost you need to consider all those variables. If you're at very high ISO, the D800 will be more noisy and the D4 will be able to compete at larger sizes. If you're cropping heavily (say, down to 1/3 of the original pixels) then the D800 will be visibly better even for smaller prints, as 5MP is nowhere near as useful for large prints as 12MP. And if you're shooting intricate detail, where you absolutely want a 300dpi image, then the D800 is going to stomp all over the D4 very quickly indeed.

So, the answer to "which camera is better" for your needs is the same as always: it depends.



Nov 06, 2012 at 08:42 PM
JTS1
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p.2 #12 · D4 vs D800


colincarter46 wrote:
the D800, being harder to shoot, is a myth. Its no harder to shoot than any other full frame camera.




Nov 06, 2012 at 10:18 PM
JTS1
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p.2 #13 · D4 vs D800


Collin,

I think that your analysis is quite valid. Probably all the folks touting the D800 don't own the D4. The only negative that I would agree is the price. The D4 is the much better camera, but is it worth double the price? Nikon just seem to gorge the pros. Technically Nikon is great, but customer friendly they are not.



Nov 06, 2012 at 10:21 PM
colincarter46
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p.2 #14 · D4 vs D800


Frank_Maiello wrote:
I'm starting with the consideration that the goal is to maximize the camera's performance. Only if that's not the case would I agree.

With my 12MP camera, I can often get away with marginal focal length/shutter speed combinations that do not cause blur on a level that can be recorded by the sensor. However, if the resolving power of the sensor is increased, and assuming the lens is up to the job, there is a greater chance for the sensor to record the blurring effect of camera movement. Likewise with a 12MP camera, I can stop the aperture down further before
...Show more

the basis of my argument is about 18,000 shots taken with my D800 over the last 6 months or so. The detail is stunning, certainly at a level the d3 or d4 cant get near to.

ive shot landscapes, weddings, motorsport and birds at all apertures and shutter speeds (here in the uk, we are often at high iso and low shutter speeds) and ive not seen any adverse problems. Landscapes at f18, f20 are as detailed, as sharp and free of diffraction issues as ones at f8 - f11.

Using your hypothesis, a 90 megapixel medium format digital back would be almost useless at all apertures and shutter speeds and we all know this isnt true.

The D800 is the first DSLR that can actually get close, and even surpass some, medium format digital backs in quality and thats a fact that has been proven.

The D4 isnt much better than the D3s, the increased resolution is a non issue and iso might actually be a tad worse.

If you dont agree, then thats fine, i can only go on my own findings.





Nov 06, 2012 at 10:25 PM
Rodolfo Paiz
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p.2 #15 · D4 vs D800


JTS1 wrote:
I think that your analysis is quite valid. Probably all the folks touting the D800 don't own the D4. [...] The D4 is the much better camera [...]


Because, of course, anyone who disagrees with your thinking must not know what they're talking about, right?

Because, of course, you do own and shoot both so as to be qualified in making that statement? Or is it that you have no clue what anyone else here uses or owns, and are simply being dismissive so you'll mentally relieve yourself of the need to think about viewpoints that are different from yours?

Would you care to tell us just how much experience you have shooting or owning either camera?



Nov 06, 2012 at 10:32 PM
mshi
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p.2 #16 · D4 vs D800


Most improvements on D4 over D3s are made in video department since that's the area where Nikon has been investing more and more R&D time and money. It looks like Nikon's management has already bet the farm on video at the expense of still.


Nov 06, 2012 at 10:35 PM
colincarter46
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p.2 #17 · D4 vs D800


JTS1 wrote:
Collin,

I think that your analysis is quite valid. Probably all the folks touting the D800 don't own the D4. The only negative that I would agree is the price. The D4 is the much better camera, but is it worth double the price? Nikon just seem to gorge the pros. Technically Nikon is great, but customer friendly they are not.


i dont understand your basis for saying the D4 is the better camera.

better at what?

not af, not dr, not metering, not video, not viewfinder, arguably not iso?

the D4 might feel slightly nicer in the hand, but the D3 was even better.

it has a faster frame rate but that makes us sloppy photographers relying on the camera to get the shot.

it has illuminated buttons, but only some of them.

if i thought the d4 was a better camera, i would have one. I had one of the first D3's and it was a superb camera and so is the D4 but its not better than a D800 at taking photographs, which is all that really matters.

the D4 is a marginal update to the D3s at best.

if you need to knock a tent peg in while you are camping, the d4 will be the better tool, ill grant you that, but for that i would save myself $5950 and get a good hammer.

I think that a lot (not all) of the people who bought a D4 are trying to justify their purchase by making unfounded statements like "its the flagship camera so its the best". They realise that they made a mistake spending $6000 for a camera that is essentially no better then their D3s's which they sold at a massive loss to get a D4.




Nov 06, 2012 at 10:36 PM
ShutteredMe
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p.2 #18 · D4 vs D800


Brought my D4 and D800e to a beauty pageant this past Sunday. I should have just left the D800e at home. The lighting was terrible and the ISO performance on the D4 wins.


Nov 06, 2012 at 10:40 PM
mshi
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p.2 #19 · D4 vs D800


colincarter46 wrote:
i dont understand your basis for saying the D4 is the better camera.

better at what?

not af, not dr, not metering, not video, not viewfinder, arguably not iso?



There are some improvements in AF particularly in low light.



Nov 06, 2012 at 10:46 PM
Rodolfo Paiz
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p.2 #20 · D4 vs D800


"Better" is never a universal quantity for a camera.

A D4 would be the best camera for me if I were working fast action, or extremely low light, needed the burst rate, and needed the best video I could get in my DSLR.

A D3s might be a much better choice in the previous scenario if I didn't print large and needed to save well over $2000 in the process.

A D800 will beat the pants off both of those for landscapes detail, tiny macro, and large prints of any kind.

A D300 is still the best airshow camera I've ever used.

A V2 with the 30-110 lens would be the best airshow camera for my daughter.

----

In the end, I'll give you a variation of an old Chinese saying: When a photographer tells you that his current camera is great, he is almost certainly right. When a photographer tells you that some other camera is terrible, he is almost certainly wrong.



Nov 06, 2012 at 10:47 PM
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