Four videos about the Nikon D800

A month with the Nikon D800: Interview with Jim Brandenburg (he made the statement "I think the plan was to have it released sooner" - if you remember, the D800 was supposed to be announced earlier). See the full version here.

Nikon D4 and D800 video features:

The Nikon D800 and Photographer John Wright:

Nikon D800 HD Video Test:

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  • Jason

    If D800 is late to market, is there be a high ISO, high fps D800S around the corner?

    • PHB

      I can’t see it being called the D800s. But a D700s or a D710 or whatever would make a lot of sense.

      I think we will eventually see the D4 sensor in the compact body and the D800 sensor in the full size body with the sensors that test best being selected for the D4s/x and the others going in the D700/D800.

      • Michael

        Looking at Nikon’s naming strategy, if there is such product coming, it will be a D710. I think it will come a year later with the D4x.

        • Jane

          Nikon entered the even cycle with the release of the D4, there cannot be another new camera model starting with an odd number before the release of the D5.

          • Worminator

            So it’s the D8000 and not the D7100? Mmm, place your bets!

            • ffaabb

              next body to be released should be DX, right?

          • Good point Jane, over to you Nikon

      • timon

        I more noticed the Tonal Range in ISO 100/400, it is really related to the imaging quality. The more important things are in the Tonal Range are not less than 9bits/8bits, when ran on the ISO 100/400.

        In the ISO 6400, d700 merely gets 6.5bits, 5d2 merely gets 6.3bits, could you get good imaging quality?

        Moreover, a nominally high ISO might also include some false face, for example 5d2 marked a nominally ISO 25600 is merely an actual ISO 15110, it is already over out the 1/3 unit error-range limit. Nikon d700 marked an ISO 12800 is an actual ISO 8436.

        Japanese CIPA DC-004 Standard listed the Sensitivity of digital cameras, but in the DC-004 Standard did not include ISO 12800 or higher ISO unit, the Standard about the highest ISO unit is in ISO 8000.

        The ISO 25600 is a thoroughly advertising campaign, does not provide practical value, but many people got confused.

    • that sounded like a fanboys dream, especially now that there are lots of so called evidences that the 5DM3 surpassess the ISO/Low-light capabilities of both the D800 & D4. Come on!

      • Jabs

        From what I have seen so far, the Canon 5D MK3 does bad above 800 ISO (grainy then too) while the Nikon’s do not. The D4 and D800 both shoot to – EV2 versus the D3 Series and D700 going to -EV 1 plus the new Nikon’s AF with F8 lenses, so Canon’s is way behind from those factors.

        The Canon 5D MK3 is so far – not in the class of a D800 much less a D4. I looked at the images and they are like a good older Canon body but Nikon has set a new Standard again in color purity and noise free images in both stills and Video.

        Nikon already had a vast lead in their older cameras and I have not seen one that surpasses that, so let us see some more tests, as the current stuff by Canon is behind the new Nikon cameras.

        I am waiting for DXO Labs myself!

        Anyhow, no time to start a camera war or continue one – I want a Nikon and wish Canon shooters well with the new bodies or for them to buy a new Nikon – LOL.

        • Craft

          Jabs, you don’t own a camera ? Is that correct

          • Jabs


            Hey Vern – wot’s a camerah?


        • mok

          hmm, i actually could not believe in what i read. Canon 5dMK3 performing worse than nikon d800? When i first noticed price difference in price between D800 and 5dmk3 then i though: what canon is doing? Nikon same class D800 is so much cheaper. But when i looked at samples and compared to D800 then i understood why. In my opinion D800 is performing worse. With mk3 you can shoot til iso 1600 with hardly seing noise, while for D800 you are done at ISo 800.
          To be clear – i am not any fan of canon either nikon. Currently i dont have camera and am about to chose something and i think D800 will not be the case because of too high resolution – i just dont need it, i rather have camera performing better in low light that camera with huge files.

          • Not challenging your restrained opinions, but… what???

            1. I’ve seen the many, many image samples and they look supremely excellent not only up to but THROUGH 6,400.

            2. Done ay 800 iso? The whole point of the now aged D3 was that life BEGINS after 3,200. Sandro’s motorcycle sparks at 6,400 iso was the whole point of Nikon’s game changing D3 and it’s ad campaign.

            3. Whether for Nikon OR Canon, perspective on the endless micro-analysis of iso performance and other such measurements… most of Steve McCurry’s classics were shot at 800 iso or less; how many people shoot pristine files and then spend over $200 on a program such as Alien Skin’s Exposure series to add grit and grain. Such a tiring battle.

            4. Soon, many professionals will fully articulate the intrigue of file sizes after 18 or 21 MP… and it’s certainly more than for printing big pix.I’m intrigued and open to seeing how they legitimately legitimize the compelling benefit of medium format resolution.

            Now, having said all this, I admire your level-headed restraint in sharing your thoughts. Keep it up 🙂

            • mok

              Hej Sean
              Thanks for your opinion.
              I was waiting for someone to answer to what i said because i think it also helps in chosing camera.
              Maybe the as you said ‘micro analysis’ of the grain for iso is not the best way to choose camera. Other things also matters. I saw in many typical news pages that actually pictures which are placed there are hardly big, they always make them smaller just for pages to load quicker. There are rather little amount of those who very much look on the grain when they read article about some event. They more are into the ‘what happened’ and not ‘how much grain’ is in the pictures.
              So this micro ISO analysis maybe is not the best.

              But anyway D800 is for me too big files, if it was same mpix as Mark3 then probably would be easier choice – one of the arguments would be gone.
              I am little scared of this very high resolution. Also noticed that pictures from so high resolution has more so called ‘bokeh’ which i dont like.

              On the other hand i noticed that Nikon is bit step ahead of Canon in many areas.
              I would for example rather chose D4 and not 1DX because D4 seems to me going bit ahead of the 1Dx in ways of the body design and features.
              Canon now introduced this 61 focus points after seeing that more is better, and that people like it in when its more. Canon seem to look on what the competitors are doing and if people like it then they implement to own cameras. Thats why i think Canon is in many areas step back.
              I look on those stuff for some time already. Started from looking at the compact cameras with like 28/600mm zoom lens. But quality of pictures there was not satisfying. Then went up to lower model of mirror, where quality was very good but i started no liking that it is crop, not full frame as i used to do pictures in past on Practica which was obviously full frame (it was not digital, but film). So now ended up in the D800/Mark3 level. For sure will not go any higher because of price and actually camera size…

            • Sahaja

              @mok “I am little scared of this very high resolution”

              If it is the file size that scares you, large hard disks and memory is cheap.

              Otherwise get a D700 – it is still a great camera. Use the money you save to buy a lens.

      • TnT


      • Marcus

        Raw files from both the d800 aswell as the 5dmk3 are up on imaging resource. The raw noise in both cameras are very similar, there is no great advantage to canon as so many seem to suspect.

        As for the touted 2 stop advantage in jpeg noise, both cameras are equally bad detail smearing pieces of s-t. If you want quality noice reduction in post processing, the PC is still the way to go. Using topaz labs denoise 5 and then some light image size reduction and sharpening, I obtained some great results from iso 6400 aswell as 12800 from both cameras.

        Bottom line is that I am very pleased with having a D800 on preorder. In my mind there is absolutely no reason to go with a 5dmk3 if you are a nikon shooter based on noise. To me the only real difference is in shooting speed at 4 vs 6 fps, but on the other hand the flexibility of the larger frame might very well make up for that.

      • R!

        BLAH BLAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • R!

          …and Nikon’s killing Canons video mode for sure!!!!

      • photdog

        IMHO a “camera war” at this point of technology is really backwards. On rock bottom it isn’t the single camera body, which determines the better or worse alone. It is the system altogether and there are the personal preferences and needs which call to be fulfilled.
        There is a reason why Nikon and Canon are both outstanding camera and equipment makers. Both systems come with particular strengths and weaknesses over the other.
        I’m neither paid nor pushed to make my decision on DSLR systems. But at some point in time I made my decision for Nikon. And I don’t regret it since Nikon apparently fits my personal needs and preferences better. Nevertheless I do observe what other makers are doing and concerning some items I wish, that these would be offered by Nikon too as e.g. a 17mm tilt-shift or radio control on flashes.
        I’m very thankful that first there is a choice in the offer and second that there are makers competing shoulder at shoulder and by doing so push each other to advance and give us new opportunities. If you are Canon or Nikon shooter isn’t the most important thing, both makers deliver equipment, to enable us to do great stuff and exceed previous limits. That is, what counts at the end of the day.

        • mok

          That is very good opinion. There is no product on Earth which has only prons or only cons.
          At the moment i am wondering which camer to buy. Actually i dont have any DSLR now and never had. In past i had mirror Practica – Made in DDR 🙂 – and now wondering to buy some prof or mid prof DSLR.
          Ideea is that i want full frame, as old Practica was. Main reason is the angle of view which in not-full-frame is smaller.
          So then choice is limited to few models of Nikon and Canon. I was waiting for D800 but when it appeared on market i am bit confused. 36MP is to much in my opinion. Files will be huge and i see that it is giving kind of more bokeh (or how it is called). Then appeared new 5D and its specs are very good. So for now i changed side to Canon (however still did not decide finally).
          I dont have pressure to buy now. Earliest would be in 4th quarter of 2012. I heard some rumors that since there is too big difference between D800 and 5Dmk3 (sensor size) that they can decide to produce cameras that will fill in the hole. I mean some hi-res of Canon and low-res of Nikon. Then decision would be easier. Canon seem to be more expensive regarding both bodies and lens so it also counts.
          Future will show 🙂

        • Sahaja

          a 17mm tilt-shift

          +1 – that is a nice lens

      • RRRoger

        Canon can list any specs they want.
        ie. My Porsche can go “up to” 300 mph
        I hope they are more accurate this time.

    • ActionJunky

      I can confirm with 100% confidence it will be coming.

      It will be called the D4.

    • Jabs

      I believe that the product that you are referring to will be called the D4X, as in same sensor as D800 but outrageous electronics like a D3X compared to a D3 Series and a price to match – all aimed at Canon’s new camera that costs $16,000.00 US dollars (I think it is a C300, but always hard for me to keep up with Canon’s names).

      D4X would then have multiple Expeed 3 units, be faster than D800 and have more features than the D4 plus maybe higher Video Resolution (4K) or even RAW Video output, 10bit Video output versus 8bit D4 – for example!

      I expect it to be a game changer and sticker shock inducing too as in above $10,000.00 US dollars.

      Who knows though as merely guessing or surmising!

      • Daryl

        Nikon will be producing D4 and D800 bodies as fast as they can for the next year or more, why should they bring out new product when they have two winners in the pro, prosumer line? Leica can not keep up with demand for lenses, this might also happen to Nikon although to a lesser extent.

      • Michael

        It might still be the 36MP. But looking at the D3x and the Sony camera with the same sensor, you’ll be able to see how Nikon is able to make the sensor better.

    • cpm5280

      Not if they want to sell any D4’s…

    • timon

      I more noticed the Tonal Range in ISO 100/400, it is really related to the imaging quality. The more important things are the Tonal Range are not less than 9bits/8bits, when ran on the ISO 100/400.

      In the ISO 6400, d700 merely gets 6.5bits, Eos5d2 merely gets 6.3bits, could you get good imaging quality?

      Moreover, a nominally high ISO might also include some false face, for example 5d2 marked a nominally ISO 25600 is merely an actual ISO 15110, it is already over out the 1/3 unit error-range limit. Nikon d700 marked an ISO 12800 is an actual ISO 8436.

      Japanese CIPA DC-004 Standard listed the Sensitivity of digital cameras, but in the DC-004 Standard did not include ISO 12800 or higher ISO unit, the Standard about the highest ISO unit is in ISO 8000.

      “The ISO 25600” is a thoroughly advertising campaign, does not provide practical value, but many people got confused.

  • Jetfire

    I very much doubt it. D4(D*) will be high iso, high fps. D*00 will be high MP.

  • Joaquim Prado

    Is it Japan made?

    • T.I.M

      @Joaquim Prado,
      Yes I think the D800/e are made in Japan (better be for that price….)

      • Joaquim Prado

        Yeah! better be! I just ordered mine with a sweet prime bright set!

      • Dan

        Sure says a lot about people’s confidence in American manufacturing!

        • Bryan

          I think people would be just fine with an American made camera too. Find me one and I’ll buy it.

          Given the countries Nikon manufactures in, Japan is preferred.

          • 0o

            i would not be !
            look @ the american cars or cars build in america !
            japan is just like germany known for their quality… america not !

    • AXV

      What do you care, you all probably use a crap apple product made in china, and don’t complain.

      • Andreu

        Give me a ‘crappy’ apple product made in china and japan….I’d take a Japan-made product that costs more too, no second thoughts.
        More so for such a high-end product. I’m sure many other readers will feel the same.

      • it’s all about my FX

        hell yeah.

        Love my Made in China stuff.

        The best infrastructure in the world for high quality, mass production. If they move the production lines to the US, your ipads will instantly triple in cost with no increase in quality. And that’s only if you can find enough qualified engineers in the US to run the factories. Just ask Steve Jobs.

        Wake up and welcome to the 21st century.

        • Michael

          Sad thing is that you have to kill yourself to ask him that.

          • it’s all about my FX

            The extra money that most of you are willing more for a non-china made product goes to…..

            CEO pay and bonus
            Employees’ paid vacations (German style)
            Medical Insurance
            Corporate tax
            Banksters in NYC
            and last but not least, Corporate WASTE!

            Hey, all that and not even a cent in spent on quality and R&D.

            Now, who is willing to buy my 16Gb ipad 3 for $2500? No takers? What if it was made in germany? Still no takers? No one’s willing to put their money where their mouth is?

            Look Ma, no hands!

        • Markus

          Triple in cost…? An ipad 2 “made in the US of A” would cost more than 10.000 dollars, if it is completely made by US of A labour and US of A parts.

          • Joaquim Prado

            Well I prefer a Japonese car instead of a chinese one, but I would loved to have the budget and buy a German. I prefer a American made Guitar instead of a chinese one. I prefer a Japonese lens instead of chinese. and lots of other stuff that I know most people would prefer. Not saying that china made stuff is crappy but I have more confidence in such an expensive product been made in Japan for obvious assembled reasons.

            • RondoX

              Honesty, nothing is ever made in one place nowadays.

              Pro Nikon bodies are “made in Japan,” but the basic parts that are used in all of their cameras come from Thailand.

              Same thing with Pro glass. The parts that are needed for every lens, regardless of price, comes from China.

              They are just assembled in Japan.

      • Dweeb

        You miss the point. In China a worker turning out bad product is shot. Here, the union pays for their medication while they rack up seniority.

        • Henrik

          I’m assuming ‘here’ is in the US? Interesting, with that logic anything made in European countries would be utter crap. Germany for example has far stronger unions than the US, and I believe it’s safe to say that German made technology tends to be pretty awesome…

          • it’s all about my FX

            German technology like my BMW which has been in and out of the shop for the past month causing to me to bum rides from my Toyota driving colleague? I still think the US has a leg up on most technology based products. Sorry Japan and Germany.

            The assumption which equates higher price (or the origin of production) to higher quality is so 1980s.

  • broxibear

    One day Leica S2 and the next day Nikon D800
    Don’t worry John, we won’t tell anyone over in Germany…take the money and run, lol.

    • Mock Kenwell

      Hilarious! What a dog!

  • btdown

    blah blah blah….wake me up when D700+ rumors drop….

    • jodjac

      Enjoy your nap!

  • Who can tell me exactly how many pixels reads camera from the sensor to make the image when shooting video?
    I don’t believe that D800 resizes all 36Mp to 1920X1080 30 times per second…

    • I don’t believe the D800 does still capture while taking video.


      • dimalozz

        My question is only about video: DSLR resizes all 36Mpixels to 1920X1080 or simply gets signal fom selected 2073600 pixels?

        • GrumpyDiver

          So far as I understand the technology, it also does the same thing (throws away lines of data) to achieve 1080 x 720 mode. It has to do this in order to have enough processor power to resolve the frame rate, The camera is limited by it’s image processor, not by its sensor.

          While Nikon has a 7k sensor, the end product is going to be 2k output. just like it’s competition. When I look at the render speed, I get on my current HD camera on a reasonably fast computer, this is not such a bad thing,

          • GrumpyDiver

            Sorry, I meant 1280 x 720, not 1080 x 720.

          • AXV

            But are they randomply chosen? Nikon should tell exactly how does it work so the user can overcome some issues in certain types of shooting if he knows this in advance.. Or at least to know the side effects of this to try and avoid them.

            • GrumpyDiver

              One could of course get a real video camera and be done with. By the time you add the accessories you need to shoot decent video, the price will be about the same.

      • Brock Kentwell

        “To take a photograph while recording is in progress, press the
        shutter-release button all the way down. Movie recording will end
        (the footage recorded to that point will be saved) and the camera
        will return to live view. The photograph will be recorded at the
        current image area setting using a crop with an aspect ratio of
        16 : 9.” Also allows frame grabs

        • RRRoger

          The D4 does not stop recording a movie when a still is taken.
          Why should a D800?

          • RRRogers Ghost

            Yeah, that’s odd. Maybe to keep the image at full 36mpix resolution. After all, the D4 can take a still without stopping, but it does it at 1080p (low res for a photo). They don’t have it set this way because they prefer it, it’s because if it does not stop the video recording, its got to be at the current video recording setting.

    • pegdrgr

      In one of the videos they state that a frame grab while shooting video is 1080, at least for the D4, and in this case I think the D800 is the same.

  • Postman

    However a perfect tweener could be a D700s with 20-24mp and a mid-range combination of ISO, frame-rate, and dynamic range.

    • Nick

      That would be the ultimate! That’s what I want, a D700 body with the spec sheet similar to a 5dII

      • I assume you mean the 5d3, the spec sheet on the d800 IS already better than the 5d2 AND exceeds it by far!

        • Nick

          Nope, I want a d700 with the d4 AF, @18-20mp and video. I’d be perfectly happy, even the d4 sensor would be great. With the WT-5 compatibility. I just want the D4 for $3000, with a little more rez!

  • Does anyone know what file type the D800 will output via uncompressed HDMI video? I’m looking to pick up an external recorder and I’m getting conflicting stories, whether it will be DNxHD, etc. It’s driving me a bit bonkers.

    Also, any idea how huge the file sizes will be uncompressed via HDMI out? I need to know what size said drive should be.


    • Mike

      What ever you set your recorder to. The hdmi output is just that an output. Think of an old VCR your just providing an input then setting the record settings on the recorder itself. You can pick any hdmi external record that fits your need and budget your output from the cam is video not a file.

      • Great. Thanks alot. So, it’s more like the ingesting of the footage that puts the wrapper on the footage. Gotcha. I never quite had this choice with my D300s. lol.

        Super stoked to get mine Wednesday!


        • Stil wondering if anyone has any ideas about file size?


          • soap

            File size?

            Do the math.

            Bits per pixel * pixels * frames per second

          • The filesize will depend on the type of recorder you use. For example, if you use the Atomos Ninja, at ProRes HQ, even a few minutes worth of video recording can take up a couple GB worth of HDD/SSD space.

            Because you are using an external recorder, the filesize stored in the storage device (HDD/SSD, memory card, etc) of that recorder will depend on the CODEC, compression quality setting of the recorder.

            However if you were to record video in the camera’s memory card, the file size will be up to the quality of the video being recorded (e.g. 1080p @ 25p) with H.264 codec, ~12mins worth of video could take up 4GB of space, similar to what previous DSLR’s with video recording ability have done before.

          • ActionJunky

            All this information is in the users manual, already posted.

      • GrumpyDiver

        I seem to remember that the camera uses 4:2:0 when recording to memory card and 4:2:2 when outputing HDMI. I would expect that HDMI will take up a lot more space on an external recorder than the memory card approach will.

        If my Panasonic AF100P can be used as a rough guide, I get about 6 hours of video on a 64GB SD card, but closer to 10 minutes on a 64GB external SSD at highest quality setting.

  • Markus

    What is a naikon rap??? mentioned in the second video at the start

    • Naikon Rap = nikon rep. (abbreviation for “Representative” of Nikon)

  • Michael


    Uncompressed HDMI has no file format until it is recorded. The recorded file format is going to be the function of the particular external recorder you use. Also you need to be aware that file format and compression are two sperate but interrelated topics. One does not necessarily inform the other.

    Think of the file format as the wrapper to the video data. That data is encoded by the codec.

    When selecting a storage medium you need to consider the requirements of the recording device. Some use spinning disk, some SSD and others Compact Flash. I believe only SSD would be fase enough for truly uncompressed HD.

    My advice is pick the best recording device that suits your budget and buy the storage that is recommended by the manufacturer of the recorder.

    One other note is that there is little point in recording uncompressed video these days. The high bit rate codecs like DNxHD and ProRes are good enough for all but the most demanding applications.

    Good Luck,

    • GrumpyDiver

      Mike – I tend to agree with your assessment. When I compare the video image on my Panasonic AF100P that is internally recorded at 4:2:0 and 4:2:2 on my external Atmos Ninja recorder, I am hard pressed to see any significant difference in real life.

      • axv

        So it is not a huge difference like say jpeg vs raw?

        • GrumpyDiver

          It can be far worse than RAW vs jpg. My Panasonic AF100P gets about 6 hours of video on a single 64 GB card, but my external capture 64GB drive gets about 10 minutes of video out of the HDRI port.

  • broxibear

    *Anyone in the UK looking for a D4* ?
    It could just be a website error, but this UK retailer is no longer showing the D4 as Pre-order but as available to add to basket, ie in stock. No harm in contacting them to find out, and who knows you might get your D4 earlier than you thought ?

    • doug

      Site looks legit to me.

      • broxibear

        Hey doug,
        The site is perfectly legit and it’s a real retailer, I just wasn’t sure if they mistakenly took off the Pre-order tag that’s all.
        It’s these type of smaller retailers who are likely to have one or two actually in stock and not already reserved…worth a phone call.

        • Hi there, we actually took the pre-order tag off because we started listing the full product. We’ve had pre-orders but are expecting more than enough stock. If you get let down on launch day then give us a call. I’ll post on twitter/facebook the second we get the cameras in, an easy way to get up-to-date stock info.

          James @ Castle Cameras.

          • broxibear

            Hi James,
            We don’t see that many comments from retailers here so thanks for the information.

  • HS

    Here is a test of the D800 HDMI clean output
    now it said that is 10 bit! but 1080i? 🙁

    • The video stated 1920×1080/60i, I don’t think the D800 even does 60i, only 30p, 25p and 24p at 1920×1080.

  • NoFunBen

    In the first one he says high ISO is better then the d700.
    and to think he was running around with a d800 9 months ago.

    • burgerman
      • Huh

        Sorry. But running a denoise program on an image and then opening the image in a photo editing program and sharpening it is not my idea of having better performance? That in no way is a scientific or accurate way to compare noise from one camera and no noise reduction, to a camera with a resized image (which decreases noise) and then running the photo in two separate programs to fix the problem. If I’m buying a $3000 camera, I should have to do this. And what really gets to me, is that we can do this all day long on our computers, and have been able to for 10 years now, yet Nikon and Canon can’t put this in their cameras when these cameras already have enough computing capability in them. We have netbook computers that can do this, but we can’t do this with big fatty camera? Give me a break Nikon!!! Hire some new firmware programmers!!!

    • fred

      Your denoised/resized image is full of weird artifacts and looks horrible.

  • InfraRed

    FWIW, my D800 is confirmed for delivery on Wednesday, 3/21.
    Has anyone received similar information?

    • from where did you order yours, please do tell!

      • InfraRed

        Amazon, ordered on Feb 6th, as soon as pre-orders went live on their site and requested express delivery.

    • Chris

      Yes – my Dealer here in Germany called me that he will get my d800 on Wednesday. As I am on a business trip then I have to wait till Thursday to get it – s..t timing…


    • cpm5280

      Where (even what country) did you order from?

      Please say you ordered from a US retailer… 🙂 I would love to have this camera early.

  • Jabs


    Thanks for these Videos about the D800 – maybe overdue for us rabid fans but thanks for all the efforts to keep us up to date.

    Appreciated too.

    • very welcome, thanks for being a long time reader

  • BryanL

    My local BestBuy says they show they are getting 2 by Thurs of this week…only downside… you cannot put on hold,,, and I will have to pay tax,,,but If I preorder now,,, will I wait a year???


    As opposed to way crappier virus-ridden PCs made in China? You bet!

  • Here’s one more, which I shot yesterday, a low light field test. Let me know what you think!

    • thpjm

      thanks Jordan, nice video clip…I posted a comment, will you be kind enough to check it and answer ?

  • That link goes to a D4 video.

  • Jon

    I can’t deal with WDC friggin cutting in the middle of this guy’s sentences.

  • Zeb

    Nikon, you’ve made a pap’s ‘up the skirt shot’ camera. A prep in the morning, take all afternoon to shoot one single picture, all night to process it, what about a camera that most of us can use?

    18MP FX at a reasonable price. (Don’t bother with video – that’s what video cameras are for).

    • You are upset just because the files are big? Get an SSD and some memory for your computer and all will be fine.

    • Jorge

      Most of us CAN in fact use it. Stop whining. Get yourself a POS D5100 and shut the F*ck up. Jeez.

      • Zeb

        Not true, most will not be able to use it and will be a waste of time for storage and ink. Thank you for your input, eat shit and die.

  • burgerman

    D800 and shoot at last centuries low resolution 9 to 20 mp… Dont use the movie mode.

    Or get a oudated low res D700. Whats the point of cheap FX when say 3 decent lenses are about the price of a small car? And built / function properly.

    You want cheap, consumer grade stuff? Stick with DX.

  • neversink

    A bunch of whiners around here….

    “I want a D700x wah wah wah… Mommy, Mommy.. Nikon made a D800 but didn’t improve the D700,,,WAH.. I hate D800… WAH….D800 Bad, D700 Good… WAH… Nikon bad.. Nikon discontinue D700… WAH WAH WAH…..”

    Grow up children.. The D700 is dead… Long live the D800 (at least for a few years)

    Get over it… Time to move out of Mommy’s….

    • WengerIsGood

      Feel better now?

    • Markus

      ***Grow up children.. The D700 is dead… ***
      Nah it isn’t as is the nagging for a follow up.
      The D700 will be as long on sale as there is a market for it…seeing the D90, it will be quite some time (still on sale)

      • burgerman

        I agree. Its the cheap entry level FX camera. It has been superceded to a large extent by the D800 including its control of noise, judjing by this that I did earlier

        But its still a good solid dependable camera for those that dont need to ever print big.

        And its price will likely fall further since the 4 year newer D800 does everything better apart from outright speed. And even then it does 5 frames per sec in slight crop mode which is still masses more pixels.

        • neversink

          Actually — I’m not getting rid of my D700 when I receive my D4 and D800. It is a great camera, but has been superceeded by the D800 and D800E. That’s life.

          By the way, I can print big from the D700. Printing big is more a matter of shooting technique….. Of course it depends how BIG you are thinking of printing….

  • john

    I realy hope that what Jim Brandenburg is saying about the d800(e) and the comparison with
    middle format film is true. Untill now I am still shooting with my 6×7 film camera because of the quality and even so important: the mindset one has when shooting middle format.
    On average I shoot about 30 foto’s per day with medium format for a project. Of those 30 I use maybe 5-10 foto’s in the end, depending on the scale of a project. (It’s film, every shot counts!)
    I sincerely hope that the d800(e) can provide me with a real alternative for medium format film. Both in image quality and in the way I am used to photograph.

    • neversink

      What do you think this will do to companies like Phase One, who have incredible medium format cameras and backs, at even more incredible prices!!!!?????

      • sd

        medium format and full frame still arn’t the same thing just because they have the same mp. its like comparing a coolpix with dSLR’s just because they have the same mp.

        • Fishyindenmark

          Yeah. Something seems fishy here. All of the Pro Photographers that used the D800 act as if it gives medium format quality, yet it clearly does not. You cannot compare a 36mpix full frame sensor, with an 80mpix medium format sensor. The full frame doesnt even come close to the performance.

      • neversink

        sd – No, they aren’t the same but Brandenburg is saying that the D800 has the quality of medium format, and the comfort of SLR… Not sure I agree with him, but then again I haven’t had a chance to test out the new bodies….

        if true, then we have a real game changer….. However, 80 mb on a Phase One camera is pretty incredible….

        • Fishyindenmark

          Good point.

      • Daryl

        I would think that Phase One has to be very anxious right now, medium format has such a small portion of the market as it is. re: sd writing that full frame digital is not equivalent to medium format….agreed if this is 2007, don’t be surprised if in 2012 that new technology full frame gets real close if not surpasses in some (many) ways mf backs of equivalent mp. re: fishyindenmark….the D800 won’t compare to a 80mp digital back but it might just compare to a 30-40mp digital back such as the lower end of Phase, Leaf and Hasselblad. If you want to see how good full frame digital is look at the D3x and Leica M9, both compare very very well to mf digital and that is old technology.

  • Nick

    Nope, I want a d700 with the d4 AF, @18-20mp and video. I’d be perfectly happy, even the d4 sensor would be great. With the WT-5 compatibility. I just want the D4 for $3000, with a little more rez!

    • mikils

      If you and everybody else with this mindset start whining a little louder you might ask for a D4 @ $1500. Go on. Start the wailing! How could Nikon resist?

  • drc

    Wait another three months. At this time the D800 will be recognized as replacing the D700. We will see a 200 megabyte working file in a 8000 megabyte physical memory space as normal. We will find storing 40 megabyte files on a 32000 megabyte capture device normal.

    Nikon provided medium film capability in digital when industrial capabilities allowed it and now follows this with a fine grain film like digital camera. I enjoyed the video clips. Some visionaries just see farther and Nikon management certainly rank among these with this offering.

  • David

    What is the lens that John Wright is using in the second video (model shoot)?

    • David

      … oops I meant the third video. The one entitled “The Nikon D800 and Photographer John Wright”

      • broxibear

        It’s either the 50mm f1.4 G AF-S or f1.8 G AF-S David…they’re difficult to tell apart.

        • David


          I think you’re incorrect – it clearly looks like a 77mm-threaded pro lens, and both the 50mm lenses you mention are 58mm in thread (filter) circumference. Check around the 2:55 – 3:00 mark in the video. It’s also a gold ring lens.

          I was thinking it was the 85mm f/1.4 G, or perhaps the 24-120mm f/4 G, although the former would make much more sense for the shoot being performed.

          • broxibear

            You’re probably right about the 85mm…they all look really alike.

  • TheInconvenientRuth

    Oh my god, my D4 just arrived today. Ordered 2 but it seems I’ll have to wait for no.2.
    Amazed, as my UK dealer (Luv u Mike!) air-freighted it to the middle of but-f*ck=nowhere in China for me! (There is no NPS here…)
    Kisses and hugs and cakes and Beers for you when I get back to civilization!!

    It just feels so amzingly good in my hands!!!
    Can’t wait to give it a run for its money at the London Olympics!!!

    Till then, stuck in the UnDemocratic People’s Republic of China

    Golden tip: If you’re out here and confronted by PSB/Police/Army/Dodgy blokes with dodgy credentials: Pretend not to speak English. They willl get an interpeter. Speak gobbledygook. Made-up Finnish. Whatever. Eventually they’ll decide you are more trouble than they get paid for and leave you alone. Just don’t speak English 😀

    • Rock mock well

      Can’t speak or write English well and it is my native language. Thanks for the heads-up!

  • All the videos in the world don’t make any difference. Only the images count.

  • Chris

    I find it funny how Jim says it’s like a 4 by 5 and has a look of a Hasselblad. I shoot with a Hasselblad H4D 40 and a Phase One 645 DF 140IQ digital back. I will definitely check out how this D800 compares to medium format since it seems like Nikon is trying to break into that market.

    • Daryl

      Nikon is trying to break into that market big time. I also shoot medium format digital and if the D800 comes close we might see the first real signs of medium format digital’s demise, similar to it’s film counterpart. Nobody expects the D800 to compete with the IQ180 or Hasselblad equivalent, but $3000 for a body will be hard to compete against for the lower resolution medium format digital.

      • Chris

        That is true Daryl I totally agree. I like nikon but I dont think there’s anyway that nikon can compete with Hasselblad or Phase One for that matter without physical increasing their sensor size. Even with that said if Nikon has plans making Medium format, I dont think there will be a demise in Hasselblad or Phase one because every camera is a tool and still has use for many photographers. I use the Phase One because of it’s ability to sync at 1600 outdoors…I like the Hasselblad because of its true focus applications. The lower resolution H4D-31 from hasselblad would be a good comparison. What system do you use?

        • Daryl

          Hi Chris,
          Good point on the high shutter sync, many love and need that feature on both Hasselblad and Phase One, and no doubt there are other features such as those gorgeous big viewfinders on mf. Let’s hope that mf is around for many many years, but given the economics of a Nikon body at $3000 and the least expensive new Hasselblad at $13,000 it will be tough for many photographers to justify the price differential for everyday shooting and there is always rental for the times when mf is necessary. The system I use are a Nikon D200 (although not much), a Leica M9 and Contax 645 with Phase One p30+.

          • Chris

            WOOOOO LEICA!!!!! I have yet to try the S2 MF. Yeah Hasselblad is pricey but I’m also sure the people who do use it can justify why they have to. The P30+ DB is awesome! I’ve used it before. I too am curious about the D800E.

            • Daryl

              I haven’t really shot the S2 but have held it and checked out the handling and menu system. It is something special, Leica knows how to build beautiful cameras. At one time I had the Hasseblad H2 and a Phase One P45+, this was a really nice setup but I never could get the focus spot on. The Contax/p30+ is pure goodness and the reason I haven’t bothered with Nikon digital seriously until the d800e, it will be fun to test these cameras against each other. If focus is reliable I think the d800e will match up very well with a p30+ back.

      • “Nobody expects the D800 to compete with the IQ180 or Hasselblad equivalent”

        How so?

        If anything I’d say:

        The D800 has the resolution and then easily trumps it with high iso. As for a medium format’s supposed dynamic range advantage… I’m open to examples where someone actually notices the difference.

        Again, not criticizing your remark, but I’m not sure what supposed, compelling advantages you might not of which I am not aware.

        • Daryl

          Resolution!! 36mp Nikon will not compete with a IQ180. Let me give you an example. When released the Leaf back equivalent to the IQ180 was in the hands of the rep, he took a photo of a distant beach from up high, there was a lifeguard truck on the beach, several miles away, we could read the license plate. I don’t believe Nikon will do this with 36mp. I don’t believe Nikon will surpass 11 stops of dynamic range either, if you have seen the shadow detail of a medium format back it is quite astounding…the shadows have very minimal noise despite 4-5 stops underexposure. Lastly, I really hope you are totally right since I have a D800e on order:-)

          • 1. License plate… that’s at a higher MP count. But pixel for pixel I still wonder what real world advantage Leaf and the others will believably claim.

            2. Dynamic range… I’m open to convincing, but I’ve seen little to inspire me thus far. For example, the IQ180 showcase images on the splash pages are… let’s say, I didn’t bother even zooming in.

            3. Noise in shadows. Again, I’m open to convincing, but I wonder what a few clicks to the right on the shadow slider in Lightroom 4 would do.

            I believe F-Stoppers is creating a fun experiment to see whether people can even tell the difference between images shot with DSLR and Medium Format.

            In summary, like many others have said… I DO think the medium format companies should be quite nervous.

    • Sahaja

      I think maybe he was comparing it to medium format film because at the same time he mentioned 4×5″.

  • Sock Hop Well

    Does anyone read this far? Give me a +1 if so.

    • GeoffK

      +1 on the read this far

      I am concerned about the file sizes when he said 200Meg.

      • Jim Brndenburg did say 200mb file but he also said 16-bit file. The actual colour depth of the file format in the production version is 14-bit. This suggests the prototype had 16-bit files. Perhaps a strategy for obtaining the highest quality samples during testing and prior to manufacturing. The 16MP 14-bit D7000 file size is about 20Mb. At 14-bit I would expect D800 36MP file sizes in the 50Mb range.

    • Daryl

      A cold day in SoCal makes this a great day to catch up with all the nice folks here. Hey admin, these comments get shut down, it would be nice to move all this to the forums.

  • broxibear

    What the f**k is going on this D4 unboxing ?!

    • jeff

      Not really sure but even to someone who has no idea what is being said I was laughing pretty hard.

    • doug

      lmao the best video ever

    • Jeff

      Well that was different, I couldn’t tell if it was a porno or a Godzilla movie

    • ffaabb

      I’m still laughing… I’ve to ask my jap friend to translate. Beautiful.

  • To shake up the current, endless hi-iso epic quest… I just stumbled onto this “old” quote from Canon Ambassador Jeff Ascough when he reviewed the 5D MKII (most considered it just a wee bit behind the D700 noise-wise):

    Jeff admits: “I’ve not used it beyond 6400 as I can’t really envisage any situation where I would need anything higher.”

    Take a look:

  • HS

    Here is another shot of the D800 in a studio environment to me looks awesome
    is JPG at full rez

    • James

      Wow! Maybe this creates more works in post to hide the natural flaws of the model that were not as obvious before. Still, it’s a good problem to have.

      Seems similar to the change to HDTV… makeup artists have there work cut out for them.

  • preist

    I think that the most interesting bit of new information I gleaned from these videos (the nice lady video interview specifically) was the reps statement that for video the 800 and 800e would be equivalent. There has been a lot of speculation that because of the change to the OLPF, video moire would be a problem, but it would seem this has been addressed. If I were to guess (assuming the rep is correct in his assertion), perhaps the downsampling process incorporates similar moire reduction techniques for movies in both cameras. After all, the OLPF is not likely strong enough on even the standard 800 to adequately address moire in movie capture. What do you all think?

    Though I shoot a significant amount of architecture (interior and exterior) for a living, I am very tempted by the “e.” I’ve used Phase One backs before and not found moire to be a significant problem. On the rare occasion it pops up, recomposing and refocusing or just fixing it in post has not been problematic. I do think that video is likely going to become a much bigger part of every working photog’s required purview though, so knowing the “e” will not sacrifice anything to the standard 800 on this front is pretty cool!

    P.S. to the pixel peepers, who should be shooting raw if they’re spending the time to look this closely, I too did a couple of tests on the image resource files and you should know that properly processed raws from the 800 give up nothing in terms of noise and associated loss of detail to the mkIII at the same iso. One doesn’t even need to downsample to see this. I honestly was shocked (and very happy). The texture detail and DR really make for amazing images that respond incredibly well to NR all the way up to the 25600 limit. I spend most paid days living at 100 the whole time, but if you were shooting events and your images were likely web bound, it seems as though you should be pretty set shooting DX @ ~15mp, 6fps all the way up to max ISO (if you really need it). Not my thing anymore, but way to go Nikon.

    Admin, I’ve been a reader and fan for some time, though this is my first post. Thanks for all the work you do on this site!

    • Daryl

      Hi Priest,
      Your comment on moire is similar to what I have found with Phase One. Nikon is to commended for their decision to let the photographer choose anti-aliasing or not. Once you see and shoot cameras or backs without the anti-aliasing filter it is very difficult to go back.

  • jake

    And here I thought art and imaging was about artistic design and not the medium used to create it……….

    • preist

      You might want to say tools rather than medium, since the medium has always been pretty critical to the nature of expression. Think oil versus acrylic, stone versus bronze, daguerreotype vs modern color print. Art is about expression through a medium. If I paint a portrait and do a bust the same subject, they might both be considered art, but they’re certainly not the same. The medium is quite literally the the way the artist is able to manifest artistic expression.

      I understand what you were driving at though, and I’m not necessarily correcting. The line between tools and medium can blur sometimes. If we treat 35mm as one medium and say 4×5 as another, then I think you can start to see ways the the differences come down to much more than quality. At the beginning of my career I shot 4×5 film on a Toyo and then a Sinar. Shooting 4×5, mf film, their respective digital evolutions, and 35mm are all different beasts. Of course your photographer’s eye is a common thread, but learning the craft of each is essential to getting the most out of every opportunity you have to capture the world around you.

  • Gab

    The D800 will the perfect camera for me!

    I currently use a D300 and a few lenses (DX and not DX). I mainly shoot portraits but I also do real estate photography and video where I won’t be needing the 36MP since it’s for the web.

    So I can buy the D800 and use my prime lens (50mm & 85mm) and the FX mode for the portraits and keep the DX lens like the Tokina 11-16mm to get wide-angles shots when doing real estate photos and videos (The DX crop mode will give you about 15-16MP and covers the 1080p with no quality loss).

  • ffaabb

    The ‘nice lady’ video @ 3.55

    Waou !! she says

    and then the guy say ‘but you can’t do it while recording’

    D’oh !!

    Nikon…. So close… Why don’t you go all the way??

  • Peter
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