D3s vs D600 for dance and gymnastics
/forum/topic/1151495/2

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SoundHound
Registered: Jan 14, 2006
Total Posts: 5325
Country: United States

I shoot the D3s/D4 for very low light Flamenco dance. I also own the D800e. The D800e is virtually useless because the frame rate is so slow. The D4 is better than the D3s because of better controls and 10 instead of 9 fps (yes even just one additional frame per second is important).

The AF, the way I use it, is just about the same. The D3s has a big double size RAW buffer so I can keep shooting while the D4 has a stupendous RAW buffer so I can't imagine the camera slowing down. The IQ and hi ISO noise is very similiar.

Sure it's fine to say if you know what you are doing that you can anticipate the crucial moment. That's a wonderful concept. Often I can anticipate a spin and nail down the shutter button. But, at 10 fps you only get about 1/3 or so of a quick 360 spin. Ditto for a jump off the floor-gravity waits for no one.

The D3s is a superb low light action camera and only gives up a tiny bit to the D4. No one else makes a camera to equal either (the 1Dx doesn't have that last bit of extreme low light focus while it's , advertized, 12 fps is only achieved under certain conditions not necessairly possible for low light dance). Some measurements still give the D3s the hi ISO edge over the D4 by about 1/3 of a stop.



blutch
Registered: Jul 29, 2012
Total Posts: 924
Country: United States

Ok.. I'm no expert here, but I would like someone to respond to my logic on this topc.

DxOMark rates camera sensors. They have overall ratings and specific ratings.

The D600 overall rating is 94. The only cameras in the world rated higher are the D800 and the D800e. The D600 iso rating (low light) is 2980.

The D3s overall is 82 and its iso rating is 3253. A little higher than the D600.

The D700 - a camera noted for great low light performance has an iso rating of 2303 which is significantly below the both the D600 and the D3s.

I am following this thread because I shoot low light live classical concerts and musical theater. I do not need a large buffer or fast FPS. The most I ever do is shoot 3 click bursts.

So, it seems to me that the D600 is the camera for me over the D700 - Can't afford a D3s.

What are the flaws in my logic? The D600 is better or almost equal to the D3s and should be considerably better than the D700. Yes, I love the controls and layout of the D700/D3s, but I can learn to function with the different layout.

Thanks

B





molson
Registered: Oct 30, 2002
Total Posts: 10885
Country: Canada

Gregstx wrote:
molson wrote:
I haven't used the D3S, but the AF on the D600 is very s...l...o...w...


I am curious why you would say that. Very slow as compared to what? From what I read in your other posts, it seems like you haven't bought a D600. FWIW, I took about 2800 pics of a bicycle race last weekend with a lowly D7000 and a slow 3.5 - 5.6 lens. Focus speed was never an issue. I did manage to run out of buffer, shooting in the CH mode. But AF was awesome. I think I had probably less than 6 pics OOF out of the whole lot. With the tweaked AF of the D600, I would expect it to be at least as good as the D7K.



I'm comparing it to my D800E, my 5D Mark III, my 7D, and (from memory) the D700 I sold earlier this year - all of them focused significantly faster than my D600.

The D600 AF is probably more accurate than the D700 was, but it just takes a long time to make up its mind where it wants to focus, particularly in low light. I don't remember my D7000 (also sold earlier this year) being quite that slow either, but I never really tested it in low light, so it's probably close.

I'm assuming much of the OP's dance and gymnastics shooting will be in venues with less than ideal lighting situations, so I would highly recommend a D3s (or D3) over the D600 if his budget allows. The D600 seems to be great value for the money (I say "seems" since there are still no good RAW converters compatible with D600 NEF files yet) but don't expect it to perform miracles on a budget.



molson
Registered: Oct 30, 2002
Total Posts: 10885
Country: Canada

brianjb wrote:

IMO, he was trolling and trying to get a reaction out of someone.


Great - another noobie troll has joined FM...



Kerry Pierce
Registered: Feb 01, 2004
Total Posts: 3646
Country: United States

I don't know that there are any flaws in your logic, except perhaps placing too much emphasis on dxomark sensor ratings. IMO, AF accuracy and speed trump the sensor. It doesn't matter how good the sensor is, if you miss the best shots due to poor AF performance. I would also place lenses ahead of the sensor. The best shots seem to always come from the great glass, regardless of the sensor. YMMV

Kerry



Gregstx
Registered: Dec 07, 2010
Total Posts: 605
Country: United States

Molson, I am surprised that you have a D600. One of your other posts has indicated that you would not consider buying a D600 until after all of the initial production run bugs were worked out. What focus mode are you using?



blutch
Registered: Jul 29, 2012
Total Posts: 924
Country: United States

I also forgot to mention I will be using the camera in live music situations, so the quieter shutter is a big factor. Also, I will mostly be using a 70-200mm VRII. B



molson
Registered: Oct 30, 2002
Total Posts: 10885
Country: Canada

Gregstx wrote:
Molson, I am surprised that you have a D600. One of your other posts has indicated that you would not consider buying a D600 until after all of the initial production run bugs were worked out. What focus mode are you using?


I gave in to temptation and bought one... in hindsight, I wish I had waited until LightRoom was upgraded to support it; I haven't used it for anything serious due to the lack of RAW support.

I've been playing around in both one-shot and continuous modes, but in either mode the AF seems really slow in any kind of low-light situation, but what it lacks in speed it seems to make up in accuracy, so it's not all bad. Outdoors in good light, virtually any current camera will do the job, and you're usually shooting stopped down a few stops anyway which helps hide AF error. However, if you're after the ultimate in AF performance, nothing I've shot with from Nikon even comes close to the Canon 5D Mark III, and the 1Dx is reportedly even better than that.

BTW, I also bought another D800E - the first one was an unmitigated clusterf*ck as far as AF was concerned, but the new one is really superb. Too bad Nikon screwed the pooch so badly on the QC for those early production batches...



molson
Registered: Oct 30, 2002
Total Posts: 10885
Country: Canada

blutch wrote:
I also forgot to mention I will be using the camera in live music situations, so the quieter shutter is a big factor. Also, I will mostly be using a 70-200mm VRII. B



The D600 shutter is louder than the D7000 (due to the larger mirror), but it's quieter than the D800E and D700.



brianjb
Registered: Mar 25, 2006
Total Posts: 28
Country: United States

molson wrote:
molson wrote:
I haven't used the D3S, but the AF on the D600 is very s...l...o...w...


I'm comparing it to my D800E, my 5D Mark III, my 7D, and (from memory) the D700 I sold earlier this year - all of them focused significantly faster than my D600.


I would send your D600 in or exchange it for a different one. Other reviews I read indicate it is not slow, and my own experience indicates it is not slow when comparing to D300, D3, and D800. In fact, I really don't think it is any slower than the D300 and it may be even a touch faster which many regard as having good AF performance. This is the reason I suggested you were trolling, because I don't see how anyone could think it is "very slow".

molson wrote: Great - another noobie troll has joined FM...

Nor am I a noob. My first DSLR was a D100, and I have been reading these forums on and off for a long time.



chip_master
Registered: Sep 19, 2010
Total Posts: 99
Country: United States

Beyond the silly debate about ISO/noise the reality to shoot low light fast action is a combo of both ISO, focus speed, tracking and frame rate.

If you have 4K to spend D3s
If you have 3K to spend Dif3
If you have 2K to spend D700+grip

Yes the D800 and D600 at pixel level look pretty neat, but try and squeez out 8FPS during a jump sequence or something, good luck.

Try and track a floor routine in a dark lit gym, or a dancer runnign across the stage.

Can the D800 or D600 produce stellar results, sure, images abound of D800 and d600 soon to be capturing great action, but the camera is a tool and I will still take a used D3s/D700/D3 over a D800/D600.

spineguy wrote:
Hello all...

Currently have the D7000 with 85 1.8d and the 70-200 vrII and I mostly take my kids sporting activities...

The D7000 fair pretty well outside as it has enough light to get speeds up and ISO below 3200 (most usable I feel for D7000)

my other kids are doing more gymnastics and dance which is quite frankly too much for the D7000 to handle. I just cant get speeds up and find myself missing many killer shots because of blur...

Have the means to invest in the D600 and could possibly stretch to get a used D3s with mid shutter count... thinking $3000-3250.

I would like to hear from others on can the D600 handle such a tough assignment? worried about focus speed, burst rate.

Is the D3s approx $1100 better?

any thoughts?



jojomon11
Registered: Sep 06, 2008
Total Posts: 7396
Country: United States

D3s for sure



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