Nikon D800 review

For the opportunity Nikon D800 body camera review Many thanks to Vitaliy.

Nikon D800 review

Nikon D800 review

Nikon D800 is professional full-frame digital SLR camera. On the Internet you can find many records that the Nikon D800 is an amateur or semi-professional camera from Nikon. This is due to the fact that Nikon's professional cameras can conditionally be divided into flagship professional ones (Nikon D3x, D3s, D4 etc.) and just professional (Nikon D300, D700, D800). Personally, I am of the opinion that the Nikon D800 is a professional camera.

Photo on Nikon D800

Photo on Nikon D800

The Nikon D800 camera is made in good tone, the entire body of the camera is made of magnesium alloy, the handles and control dials are rubberized. The camera has weather and dust protection. True, protection against weather conditions will be complete if appropriate lenses are used.

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Full frame

Nikon D800 is a full-frame camera, of its kind, Nikon for 2012 has only 2 cameras of this level - this is Nikon D700 и Nikon D800E. Nikon D600 - this is already an amateur full frame. Nikon D800 has on board a whopping 36.8 MP (CMOS sensor). Responsible for image formation 36.3MP, which allow you to take photos 7360 by 4912 pixels... As of Fall 2012, the D800 is the narrowest format camera with the highest pixel count. Have Nikon D800 14 times more MP than the first Nikon D1, Nikon D1h. Of course, it is not the quantity of MP that matters, but the quality. And the quality of these almost 40MP is determined by the dynamic range and the level of noise, color reproduction, etc.

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Dynamic range

In addition to being the most 'megapixel' camera, the D800 also has biggest DD (dynamic range) among all digital SLR cameras... The camera attracts most of all with its huge DD. Nikon D800 is a good contender for the victory of numbers over film, which also has a very large photo latitude.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Shooting speed

It's funny, but the shooting speed of the Nikon D800 is maximum 4 frames per second... In fact, 4k / s is the declared speed, the camera itself shoots a little faster, some argue that the speed is 4.6k \ s. Even simpler cropped cameras like Nikon D7000, D90 can click faster for the brand new Nikon D800. High speed shooting is very rare. For my tasks, for example, low shooting speed does not play any role. What, after a long time shooting at Nikon D700, with its 5 fps, I felt very weak the difference between 4 fps on the Nikon D800. By the way, in DX mode, the camera can operate at a speed of 5 k / s, and a little subtlety, if you use MB-D12, then the speed in DX mode will increase to 6 k / s.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Buffer

The buffer is the second very important metric for camera performance. Nikon D800 can accommodate

  • 16 RAW (NEF) images when all additional functions are disabled, such as noise reduction at high ISO, noise reduction at slow shutter speeds, ADL, automatic ISO and vignetting control. When it changes compression level and color depth settings, the number of pictures that are placed in the buffer does not change. Symbolic, but in the line Nikon D100 - Nikon D800E the old woman has the largest buffer Nikon D200 with her 21 RAWs.
  • 22 JPEG L Fine, 37 JPEG L Norm, 56 images with JPEG L Basic and with all additional functions turned off, and in JPEG image quality priority mode.
  • 15 TIFF images
  • if you enable all additional features, then frame buffer becomes equal to 12 pictures in RAW, 14 TIFF, 21 JPEG.

If you use the maximum that the camera is capable of and shoot in RAW, then continuous shooting with a slow memory card should be enough for at least 4 seconds at 4 frames per second. This is a good indicator, however, this is not enough for serious shooting of dynamic scenes.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Nikon D800 has very heavy files, so if you shoot in RAW with 14-bit color depth and without compression, then only 32 pictures can fit on a 400GB memory card. Files weigh:

  • 75MB in RAW format no compression, 14bit. On the Internet there are a lot of rumors about the size of the pictures, the numbers may differ, since with different compression and color depth The source file may weigh differently.
  • 8-30MB in JPEG L photomat, quality priority.

If we talk about performance, then in my opinion performance label of all CZK NIKON, Nikon D800 in the fall of 2012 holds second place, which already says a lot. Most likely, due to the large file sizes, two memory card slots are provided.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Interesting:

  1. They say that in order to unleash the potential of the Nikon D800 you need lenses with huge resolution, that is, with great sharpness. This turned out to be not entirely true. The sharpness does not change so much when using the same lens, for example, on Nikon D700 with huge pixels and D800 with small pixels. Well, if the sharpness is low, then you can set the sharpness in Picture Control or in Nikon View NX.
  2. Having bought Nikon D800 you can immediately get a good result in the photo. This is also a myth. The camera only helps to take a picture, the photographer and other photo equipment are responsible for everything else. It is important how to take pictures. No need to think that a good DD and a huge number of megapixels will somehow seriously help improve your photos.
  3. Due to the large number of MPs, the effect of stirring affects more than on cameras with fewer MPs. Roughly speaking, take pictures with hand on the Nikon D800 is more difficult, for example, than on Nikon D700, since a large number of MPs are more sensitive to microshifts. I had to take test shots on a 90mm lens with shutter speed no more than 1 \ 200s to completely eliminate the effect of movement. In this case, the amount of MP played a cruel joke
  4. A large number of MPs require a powerful computer and a lot of free disk space. My Core Quad can barely handle heavy RAW files when working in Lightroom.
  5. Nikon D800 has a very large clean viewfinder that covers 100% of the frame, this is not enough in Nikon D700.
  6. Nikon D800E - this is a complete copy of Nikon D800, which was simply removed anti-aliasing filter (in fact, everything is a little more complicated there), thereby increasing the sharpness of the resulting image and at the same time, a greater risk of getting a moire effect on photos and videos.
Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Video on Nikon D800

The camera can take Full HD video, 1920 * 1080 30k \ s. In P, A, S, M modes, manual and automatic ISO control and correction are possible. exposure. You can select different video quality options. You can also choose which memory card the video will be recorded on. The sound is only mono. The camera has an HDMI output and the ability to connect an external microphone. The main feature of the Nikon D800 is aperture control while shooting a video. That is, finally, Nikon has implemented the ability to fully control the main parameters when shooting video. For example, Nikon D7000, D600, D3s, Nikon D7100 They don’t know how to control the iris while shooting video.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on the Nikon D800. No processing.

Display

The camera's display is huge, with a diagonal of 3.2 inches. But the Nikon D800 uses the same 921,000 points as in older displays. Nikon D700, D300, D300s, D7000, D90, D3 etc. The display is excellent, it is very pleasant to work with it.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800

ISO

50 ('Lo1') - 25,600 ('Hi2'). Range without extension is 100-6400. Almost the same as the Nikon D700. The noise level of the Nikon D800 is slightly better for the Nikon D700. ISO 50 very useful when using high-aperture optics in good lighting conditions. You can read about the noise level of all full-frame Nikon cameras in my article 'Image quality of all Nikon FX cameras'.

Example photo on Nikon D800

Example photo on Nikon D800.

Focus system

Camera Nikon D800 uses 51 point focusing system with 15 cross-shaped points Multi-CAM3500FX. The 15 center focus points can be operated from F / 5.6 to F / 8.0 and 11 points can be operated from F / 8.0. Operation at high F-numbers is very important when using lenses with teleconverters. It’s a pity that in addition to refining the focus on small apertures, the camera uses a rather old Multi-CAM3500FX, which has not been replaced with anything new. All Nikon full-frame cameras use the Multi-CAM3500FX except the camera Nikon D600... All Nikon D800 focus points are located in the DX area of ​​the image. You can read more about focusing systems in my article 'Focus systems on Nikon cameras'. Nikon D800 It has different focus modes and methods: 3D-tracking, automatic, single-point, etc. The same updated focus module uses Nikon D4.

Example photo on the Nikon D 800

Example photo on Nikon D800

Two memory cards

Nikon D800 can use two types of memory cards CF (UDMA) and SD (SDHC, SDXC, UHS-I) cards. It would be nice if both slots were under CF cards. You can set the shooting in different ways using two memory cards. Video is always recorded on only one card, which can be selected in the camera menu.

Sample photo on Nikon D 800

Sample photo on Nikon D 800

Measurement exposure

Metering system exposure based on 3D color matrix metering with 91.000 points. You need to get used to the work of the exposure meter of each camera. The exposure meter works quite accurately. exposure almost always what i expected. About measuring systems exposure you can read all Nikon cameras in my article 'Nikon Camera Metering Methods'.

Sample photo on Nikon D 800

Sample photo on Nikon D 800

Flash

Nikon D800 Flash supports Creative Lighting Nikon CLS and can remotely control other flashes in TTL auto mode. This is a very useful thing. Minimum excerpt Built-in flash sync is 1 \ 320s. When using external flash units, the Nikon D800 supports high speed sync and can work with flash with shutter speeds up to 1 \ 8000s.

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Battery

The camera uses a new lithium-ion battery EN-EL15. The battery lasts more than 1500 shots, the number of shots on a single charge is highly dependent on the shooting method, lens, etc. The battery is good enough, it's a pity you can’t use it with previous cameras. For example, batteries from my D700, D200, D80, D90 were completely the same.

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Sample photo on Nikon D800. High ISO Photo

The camera has a million additional useful settings.

  1. Function HDR. The function can be programmed to be activated via the button bracketingwhich is very convenient.
  2. Multiple exposure. The function can be programmed to be activated via the button bracketing.
  3. A virtual horizon that is available in live view and in the viewfinder. It is very convenient to program the virtual horizon function for display in the optical viewfinder, for example, using the AE-L / AF-L button.
  4. Programmable Depth of Field View Button
  5. Ability to work with manual optics. You can set the parameters of 10 manual lenses. The photographer who provided me with a camera for review, photographs without problems on the Helios-81N manual lens. More details in the section AI-S и Soviet optics. Of course, Nikon D800 has a built-in focus motor.
  6. Ability to customize everything you can when viewing images
  7. The camera has an interesting 25MP crop mode 1.2x, and the standard 15.3MP crop mode 1.5x
  8. The camera has a USB 3.0 interface
  9. Nikon D800 has a matrix cleaning system. Cleaning can be turned off, or you can turn it on to turn the camera on or off.
  10. Camera Nikon D800 has the ability to fine tune the focus (alignment) for different lenses. This is a very useful feature. In this review, all pictures were taken with the lens Tamron 90mm F2.8 SP, my copy requires a focus adjustment of '-15'. Also, you can see sample photos from Nikon D800 without processing in the review Lens Volna-3 and in review Tokina AT-X 235 PRO 20-35mm 1: 2.8.

Personal experience:

When shooting in HDR, the camera does not lower the mirror, but takes all the pictures at once with the mirror raised, while in the camera, besides the shutter curtains, something else is noisy, it seemed unusual to me. Personally, I have a camera Nikon D800 liked it. You should not be afraid or rely on a huge number of megapixels. 36MP are not as strong as they are written about. In general, Nikon D800 is a camera that you can write about endlessly. I practically did not feel the difference when working with Nikon D800 и Nikon D700, only the photos are slightly different. Difference between Nikon D800 и Nikon D700 described in D700 review. If I had a choice between the Nikon D700 and D800, I would not have decided what to purchase, but I would be inclined to the D800 because of the great processing capabilities.

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Sample photo on Nikon D800

Prices for modern Nikon cameras in popular stores can look at this link.

Comments here on the site do not require any registration. In the comments, you can ask a question on the topic, or leave your feedback, or describe your experience. For the selection of photographic equipment, I recommend E-Catalog. Many little things for the photo can be found on AliExpress.

Conclusions:

Nikon D800 - great professional full-frame camera with a very large dynamic range and, accordingly, with very good image quality. I recommend.

The material was prepared by Arkady Shapoval. My Youtube channeland Radozhiva's group on Facebook и VK.

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Comments: 449, on the topic: Review of Nikon D800

  • Benjamin

    I heard that in this camera you can find out its mileage without resorting to special programs. Is it so?

    • Alexander

      There are sites capable of this. Just upload a picture to the site and they will show you what it is already in a row.
      To find such sites, use Google.

      • Maria

        So these sites are the same programs, just the code is hardwired online.
        Apparently, the person was interested in viewing options in the camera itself. Maybe atm somewhere exif is shown.
        In fact, it is now easier to use online than even running through the "bowels" of the memory of the device itself.

  • Kirill

    I have a question about 810 (if anyone has one): does the resolution of the image change only in jeeps, or can I change the resolution in RAVs (as in canon5D III)?
    are there any examples of the original video from it (if possible in 50P)?

    • Michael

      It is possible in RAV

  • Dima

    I saw in the article that it is possible in the D800, but in the D600 it is impossible to control the aperture during video. You are wrong, it is possible on the D600 (although I checked on the D610, but they seem to be the same), only you need a lens with an electronic aperture. I suspect that in the D800 as well.

    • Michael

      No, it is not needed here. Here the leash of the rope is untied with a mirror and can change its position during the shooting

  • Maria

    Good afternoon.
    Recently, in the process of studying, they simply began to fear noise. Therefore, I try, even in the dark, to preserve ISO 200-300. Shooting the night city.
    The shake is creepy, although rarely more than 1/10 I put it and take pictures right on the exhale and with emphasis. May shake hands)
    But seriously, to what standard is it considered normal to take pictures on the D800 and you can achieve good quality. 2000, 3000 (night landscape)
    It’s very inconvenient in my current realities to run with a tripod. but apparently have to.

    • Denis

      except ISO, exposure time also affects noise

    • Vitaly N

      There was a similar situation, but not on d800. I was afraid of noise, but over time I realized that a blurred shot is 100% defective, a noisy shot is a good shot because of the way it is. And the noise in the editors is well removed.

    • Laura

      Take a lesson from Konstantin Shamin on the fight against noise, you will find on the Internet. Roughly speaking, make 2 identical frames and superimpose the bomb effect

    • Trueash

      If you don't feel like lugging a tripod, make yourself a bag of something like peas. Beads or something else ... You can also peas, only they will get wet :). You put the bag on some parapet or bench, bridge the camera on it. Not as convenient as a tripod, but takes up almost no space.
      The second option: take a screw the size of the tripod socket, tie a strong non-stretchable cord in it, and some washer or ring to the other end. Before shooting, screw the screw into the socket, step on the washer with your foot and pull the camera up. With some skill you will win a couple of stops.

      • Alexey

        better bag made of dense fabric with sand. perfectly holds the camera on anything, even on a stump, even on a boulder or rock.

    • Stas

      Why be afraid of noise? There is a compromise: evening shooting with hands - we raise the ISO, and then we suppress the noise if necessary, or, we put it on a tripod, the mode of pre-raising the mirror is very desirable, ISO 100 and we get a crystal clear picture. It's simple. I love this camera. But the mirror shakes it strongly, micro-lubrication is possible. Good luck!

      • Pokemon

        ISO on d800 / d800e / d810 will not raise much the problems will be already on ISO 2000. For night photography handheld Nikon are better suited: z6, d3s, d4-d4s, d750-d610-d600.

      • Maria

        Well, I have now used the D90 for a month due to problems with the battery. Fear disappeared like a hand) I immediately remembered that I was even happy with such pictures before)

        Now, with the advent of heavy lenses, buying a tripod is inevitable.
        It's problematic for me anyway. I am small and my hands are thin, but here the carcass immediately remembers its weight)

  • Ramil

    Hello Arkady. There is a choice between used D600 / D700 / D800 cameras. I plan to shoot “birds and everything that moves and flies”, i.e. 90% of the photo is outdoors. Had experience with cameras such as D3000 D5100 D7000 D7200. Tell me what is better to take: D600 (mileage 45.000, price 31.000 rubles), D700 (mileage 91.000, price 30.000 + a set of lenses), D800 (mileage 107.000, price 37.000 rubles)? Thank you in advance!

    • Arkady Shapoval

      I would take the d600 for such tasks, it takes off a little faster

    • Alexey

      It is better not to take the D700, it has been removed from support and it will be difficult to buy a shutter.

  • Uncle Fedor

    Moreover, the autofocus of the d600 is "more tenacious". "Good" advice you give - just get off

  • Nicholas

    “Comrades experts”, help me once again to chew on the topic with the micro-shake caused by the high pixel density. Tell me is it so? Only how much it is expressed. For example, if you compare with d7000. Considering that the pixel density in d7000 and d800 is actually equal. Is it really a problem in d800 with lubrication? I have worked and sometimes work now at d7000 since 2011, I would not say that there are problems with the shake. True, I shoot at relatively short exposures handheld, usually 1 \ 100-1 \ 200, for example, at 50mm. Or it's not so much the pixel density as a somewhat unsuccessful shutter, because in the d810 it seems like a modified one. QUESTION - is it worth being afraid of this in d800, if you do not have the firmest hand, if you shoot at 28 or 50 mm with shutter speeds of 1 \ 100 and shorter, and if you wear 135mm, then as a rule you use a monopod and shutter speeds of 1 \ 160 and shorter?

    • Alexey

      short exposures are no problem. and on long ones everything will be sad if you do not have a Terminator arm or a tripod. By the way, the manual for an eight-hundredth one directly says that it is recommended to shoot from a tripod. but this is still garbage, when I shoot with 5Dsr, with 50MP, I catch grease there very often.

      • Pokemon

        "And on long ones it will be sad if you don't have a Terminator arm or a tripod."
        He helped me at night and in poor lighting conditions on the D750 and now on the D4:
        Q (Quiet shutter) shooting mode (p. 103 of D800 manual)
        and Self-timer 1 second delay.
        But hands must be tighter of course.
        But there is less lubrication.
        I think the questioner with his d800 can also help.

        • Alexey

          Yes, a lot of things can be done, and the mirror can be raised beforehand and the shutter release can be postponed so that there is no smear from pressing the button, but firm hands are still needed during the exposure.
          I have a tremor since birth. not fatal and almost imperceptible, but gives lubrication. for me the longest exposure is 1 \ 200, well, if you focus on the width and focus, then it can be a little longer. but for something with a long focus it is better not to go below 1 \ 400. that's why I often shoot from a tripod using the remote control.

    • Pokemon

      “Or it’s not so much a pixel density as a somewhat unsuccessful shutter, because in the d810 it seems like it’s changed. "
      It's about the shutter. In the d810, many testers praised the soft shutter.
      For d800 can help:
      Q (Quiet shutter) shooting mode (p. 103 of D800 manual)
      and Self-timer 1 second delay.
      But hands must be tighter of course.
      If you like to shoot in the dark, then working (no noise) is not much better there than on your d7000.

      • Alexey

        nevertheless, the main contribution to vibration is not made by the shutter, but by the mirror - on very many cameras it rises with great speed and hammers against the stop.
        I have D2Xs, in burst mode it rattles like a machine gun. there the loudest is the shutter cocking, then, less loud, the mirror is lifted and one can say the almost silent movement of the shutter curtains. during continuous shooting, the camera shakes, like recoil during shots - an indescribable sensation))

    • Stas

      Yes, this is an existing problem. It just needs to be taken into account when shooting, and then everything will be fine. Strong grip and possibly shorter shutter speed.

  • R'RёS,R ° F "RёR№

    Read a good review, thanks. Of course, I didn’t work with digital Nikons, only once I was able to use an entry-level apparatus for reporting.
    How does this camera work with old version "screwdriver" lenses. With Nikoravmi TAMRONS. Does she make a video with them?

    • B. R. P.

      The camera has a screwdriver. Older lenses may not be able to handle 36 megapixels.

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