Nikon claims that the greenish D4/D800 LCD screen is more accurate than the D3s/D700

Nikon's response on the green cast present in the D4/D800 LCD screen is that this is not a defect. According to emails from tech support, the D800/D4 LCD displays are more accurate and set to have a better colors reproduction. The display color temperatures in the older D3s/D700 models were slightly higher which made the images to appear somewhat bluish. In other words, the problem is not with the D4/D800 but rather with the D3s/D700 - the new Nikon cameras have a more precise reproduction of white and colors (as defined by the sRGB color space) visible to the naked eye when compared to earlier models.

There is a separate thread on the NR Forum for D4/D800 issues reported by readers.

Images credit: Benjamin Brolet

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  • Legion

    LOL. “The problem is you, not the camera.”

    • i have no problem with that cast.
      it takes to get used to it, but it is not far from reality as presented by capture one later on computer.
      When looking at both screens and having calibrated monitor next to it with same image, D800 is closer to what D700 shows, but i always thought it was because LCD on camera is not color managed, so showing adobe space wrong.

      i am with nikon this time

      • i meant to say

        D800 is closer to calibrated monitor on computer then D700 is

        • Wouldn’t be surprised if it were true. The D700 screen is darker and more contrasty than the pictures on our calibrated monitor.

        • ShaoLynx

          Aha! Now that is a good comparison.
          Same result here.

      • Can you see the D800 RAW/NEF file in Capture One?
        I am using 6.3.4 and can NOT see the D800 files at this time.

    • vertigo

      I have to say I think I agree with them a little. When I take pictures of people viewing their camera at night, or viewing their laptop, the blue is very strong, and the yellow from the sodium-vapor lighting makes for some problems with white balance. You can see the D3s is producing a cooler blue image. Does this mean the other is correctly color balanced? I’m not sure, but I half believe them.

  • R R

    mmm I doubt that

    • Jason

      Ah, that explains why D800 is not getting shipped. Its taking more time to build this better LCD.

  • It’s not a bug, it’s a feature!

    • That’s what she says.

  • Art

    I call it: “Hooey”

    If true, Nikon deserves an apology & perhaps firmware update for all the D3s/D700 owners.

    • John

      Shades of Fuji Film…

      • Zim

        I miss Fuji film

    • Firmware can’t fix a hardware “flaw”.

      Even then, I’d hardly call it a flaw because it is what it is. The tiny screen on the D70 was terrible compared to the screen on the D300, which is terrible compared to the newer cameras. Stuff changes and improves all the time. Be glad that the screen is MORE accurate now rather than less accurate.

      Personally, I found the screens on almost all previous digital camears to frequently be deceptive in both color and exposure compared to loading the files on a color calibrated monitor (with a delta error of less than 0.5 dE), so I welcome a more accurate display on the camera. Sure, the monitor will always be better (especially with calibration), but I would expect the camera to display the image at least remotely accurate.

  • Rubbish, someone should take a picture of an image on a calibrated monitor, with the D800 LCD close to it to see if the colours are similar, if they both look green then Nikon ‘might’ be talking sense, but I doubt it…

    • Jesus_sti


    • bp

      You are rubbish. Let people, or you, prove it before saying it rubbish.

      • sade


    • Nick

      I have done that and the image looks like it should. Wish I had my d3s to compare, but I always knew it was a little cold.

    • Michael

      I would totally do that but my D800 still hasn’t arrived…

    • Send me a D800 or D4 and I will gladly do that for you. 😉

    • nikonmacro150

      @ Rhys Wheatley
      So what your saying is that you can’t do it yourself. Man the phuc up and stop beaching about something as minimal and trivial as an LCD. I would consider an incorrect size washer size on a flange back because it would mess up focus and mirror function or how about defective CMOS or worse a defective AF like the issue Canon had with there MarkIII. But come on, an LCD.
      If you think you can do better then then make your own camera of equal quality.

  • Tiens, des “nouvelles” de Benjamin Brolet, quoi de neuf ?

  • Kit

    I’d like to agree with Nikon. The D3s definitely looks WAY too blue.

  • Peter Pan


    the D800 doesn’t have AF issues either. Users are just to dumb to focus properly with the left fields =P

    • I have not experienced any AF issues, and I use the periphery quite a lot.

    • I’m starting to think the focus issues people are reporting are a non-issue. Once properly fine-tuned and used within the AF’s limitations, I’ve seen no issues.

      Because the D800’s PD-AF is so accurate, it shows fine tuning issues easier. My D800’s AF is FAST to lock-on and does very little searching. Its focus consistency is very high, which is the main reason for it quickly showing tuning issues. The D700 did t have the same consistency from shot to shot, which made it harder to see fine-tuning issues.

      The D800’s outer AF points are actually much more accurate than the D700’s and are able to lock faster in extremely low-light, with much better accuracy. I turned off the AF focus assist light on my D800, because it doesn’t need it!!

      Some people may truly be experiencing problems, but I’m thinking they’re not widespread, as some suggest.

      • D800 like a boss

        As a d800 owner who’s used his d800 for studio, event and sports (mostly on the outer points) I can say you’re right. It’s a non-issue.

        Sure some people may have a defect in their camera/lens, but it’s not because of the design and it’s just a freak thing that MIGHT occur occasionally.

        More likely it’s just people who need to tighten up their techniques because 36MP is showing them their mistakes in all its horrible glory.

  • No Name

    …hahahahaha… Nikon became even more arrogant company then Apple! 🙂
    Soon we will get instruction about ‘right’ angle we have to look at display! 🙂

    • YeraTool

      Nikon users have become even more of tools than Canon users! 🙂
      No offense but Nikon is right here. If it was the other way around and they made the display less accurate, we would have the right to complain. But in this case, you’re the arrogant tool.

    • jdsl

      Learn when to use “than” and “then”!

  • Andre

    Has anyone noticed that in the above two images, the D800 image is a JPEG and the D3s image is NEF, have they taken the picture controls into consideration? doesn’t really seem like a fair, objective comparison?

    • It doesn’t matter. When shooting RAW the camera produces a JPEG for the screen preview.

      • True, but the image on the LCD would be the image as processed by the Picture control.

      • Andre

        Agreed, if you want the green cast away, just adjust the picture control, or shoot raw and adjust on a screen that you’re familiar with, I’ve never heard of anyone who assumes that the images as displayed in their camera screen is exactly the way it should be. It’s just that, a preview.

        • You’re assuming way too much. You would be surprised how many people “assume” the camera display is what they should get.

          Histogram works well, but even that is based on the “camera processed” JPEG and doesn’t necessarily represent the RAW file data.

  • mandrake

    The LCD screen is just a quick preview of what the processed jpeg would look like. If you don’t like it change your jpeg settings.


  • Just look at that comparison sample above. The D800 image looks “ready to go”. It’s warm and accurate.

    Why is this coming off as a conspiracy?

    • nah

      every pro photographer i know who has commented on this agrees that the colors are inaccurate as best, garish at worst. definitely not printable and therefore not ‘ready to go.’

      • White balance settings to the rescue. After all, the on-camera preview is based on the in-camera processed JPEG (and settings) but has very little to do with any RAW data captured at all.

        This is also why I am a firm advocate of making custom in-camera white balance for all lighting situations. And in very difficult conditions, a camera profile specific to that body, lens and lighting is the best way to handle things.

        To be honest, I would never use the on-camera screen as a critical judge of color or exposure unless the display itself could be externally calibrated, and even then it would still never meet the same standards as a high-end PROPERLY calibrated monitor. Even if I ONLY shot in JPEG, I would still export those to Lightroom or something else and make final comparisons and adjustments as necessary on a proper calibrated display that I know matches my output method.

  • Bjorn

    Honeslty i found both the LCD and the File had a high green calibration to the colors i saw with my eyes. Some are stating that the output file is different from the file presented on the Camera LCD screen this was not the case for me being that both had the green issue on my end. This was a very easy fix as i manually changed every WB setting including the AWB I went 2 notches into the pink and it seemed to be perfect now. Now i found that you have to adjust this with every WB setting. I was one of several who put in a complaint to Nikon about this rather then stating its an LCD issue i do beleive its a WB calibration issue the Green/Pink tint is slightly off.

    • nicolas bryant

      Thanks, I do to have this slightly too greenish colors. And I didn’t think one could change the auto white balance! I’ll go for one notch to start with 🙂

  • Beso

    Everybody wants to go “green” these days … even Nikon!

    • T.I.M


  • Nikonsniper

    I just whis that I had my D800 so I could se what everyone is talking about.

    • burgerman

      Trust me, unless you have both d800 and d700 on your knee at the same time you wouldnt know they were different.

      • I noticed the green tint within the first half-dozen shots I took with it!

        And not by comparing it to any other camera. I spotted it immediately because I was taking test shots of a scene VERY well known to me…

        • Lugger

          Your wife won’t be happy that you out her like that…

  • Denis

    I tend to agree with Nikon techs, D800 screen does look more natural (at least man’s skin colour)

  • Joseph

    Interesting. I always noticed that my D700 images were different on my screen. Thought it was just my perception altering from when I took the shot.

  • Opinion…

    Got my D800 today. All reviews were right- mode button’s a bit too far, thumb could do with better support and some greenish tint is definitely there. If uglier is more accurate then I’d rather have less accurate.

    • They could have swapped mode and record… since I will never freaking touch that red record button.

      And they could have also NOT swapped the zoom in and out buttons.

      • Opinion…

        I must admit I was impressed with video quality more than I was impressed with photo (probably because I shoot 4×5), so don’t swap your buttons until you’ve tried the video on full HD:). But still, when you shoot a white piece of paper and the screen tells you that it’s yellowish-greenish it’s not cool at all.

  • jovan

    There was a similar scuffle over the warmth of the iPhone 4S versus the iPhone 4. As users got used to it and really took a look, they soon realized that the iPhone 4 was garishly cool blue/purple. The 4S screen is a major leap in color accuracy. I predict we’ll soon feel the same way about the D4/D800 screen.

    • It might be instructive to try calibrating your monitor with something like a Spyder and then looking at the difference. The calibrated result, at last on the last several machines I’ve calibrated including my current two, is much warmer than the “factory” apple settings. And, after a while, looks just fine, and matches the printed result on my Epson 4800 or 9880 much more accurately.

  • Is this “yellow-screen-gate” already? 😉

    Every new iPhone/iPad has this problem (and Apple is replacing “bad” units) even tho it is said to be “better at presenting colors” by Apple. And now Nikon…

  • dmcdougall

    I went to check to color on my D800 LCD screen and remembered that I was one of the chumps who pre-ordered from B&H. Maybe I’ll get it for christmas.

  • T.I.M

    This is TRUE
    And when I called Nikon Friday about my D800e locking-up many times, here is Nikon’s answer:

    “It’s no a defect, the D800e is programmed to lock-up in order to give a break to the photographer.
    Scientist sudies have shown that too much use of a DSLR can lead to serious headaches.
    So, in order to protect our ass from beeing sue, we incorporated that extra safety feature ”


    • Wow, i’m worried now. MY D800 isn’t locking up. Guess i’ll sue them later. I wondered why I had such a headache!

  • Scott M

    I agree with what Nikon is saying. Comparing D700, actual scene matches LCD of D800 much closer. They simply have a better LCD screen now. However, if you compare the gray in a monotint/black and white on both screens, the D800 is slightly cooler than the D700.
    In other words the D700 looks neutral and the D800 cool gray.

  • baked bananas

    Nothing to see here. This just further proves the d800 is the best slr on the planet right now. I wish i could afford that athena gizmo up in the upper right hand corner.

  • John

    Nikon is correct. It’s greenish since Nikon output is greenish in nature.

  • Funduro

    I have a D300s, isn’t that screen the same as on the D700?

  • TnT

    the green cast probably due to the fallout from the meltdown last year!

  • T.I.M

    There is RIGHT NOW 24 D800/D800e for sale on Ebay, where do they come from ?

    1: NPS members, pro business men, not pro photographers.
    2: Onlines retailers who prefer make $1500 quick profit on a camera rather serving customers they already have.
    3: T.I.M imagination.

    Make your choice !

    • linghu

      maybe some retailer want big $$$ dont give to pre-order customer and put om ebay for $$$, still waitting for my one

    • EnPassant

      Only 20 left now!
      And the next to go in about 7 minutes is already at $ 4.450.00!
      People are crazy!
      Why not wait a month or two and save $ 1.500.00?

  • julian

    Maybe someone can post a comparison between a d800 and a d7000 that should prove this one way or the other.

  • Fishnose

    There is actually only ONE way to decide which screen shows more correct colours. No, not comparing them to each other, not even comparing them to a monitor – but comparing them to the actual subject.
    Put both cameras on tripods, take pictures simultaneously with exact same settings, look at screens and compare to actual subject in front of you.
    I guess that’s what Nikon did.

    • No that would be pointless. The question is output not input a calibrated monitor will tell you witch is more accurate. You’d compare each to a picture they took on a calibrated screen. Witch ever is closer to there own picture is accurate

  • biho

    then we need to calibrate our eyes! anyone has a firmware for that ?!

  • Julio

    When I made the switch from film to digital, that was my biggest challenge to adapt my eyes to the balance of colors. I understand Nikon, they are right. Only the photographers with experience in film cameras can accept the answer easily.

  • K I don’t buy it, but I also don’t care about white balance in camera. I ballpark it and white balance in post. This would have zero effect on me

  • steve

    LOL! how silly can Nikon get? I am sure they will fix this in a future update to the camera. D4s maybe? The wood in that photo is both green and orange at the same time. The D3 image is a bit blue, but its closer to the truth

  • Ralph

    My D700 is very blue, my D800 (if it ever arrives) will be a bit green and I’m expecting that the D900 will be a little red (be nice if they bring it out in red to match). I’m not really sure it matters, I only use it to focus and check exposure and Ive never found a spot to plug my Spyder calibration in.

  • Both files look wrong to me they both look like they need further white balancing one is cool one is warm and green

  • A. Smith

    Well if it isn’t the camera, or the user that only leaves the Matrix…

  • I was just at Nikon’s booth at NAB and the tech guy their said they had not heard back from Japan on this one yet.

    When I compare it to the actual scene and the 5D3 I can tell you that it adds a green cast to the image.

    • Canon default color is very magenta. Comparing against a Canon is undoubtedly going to prove unfruitful.

  • R!

    The comparaison should be between the image of the camera and a calibrated lcd or led monitor preferly,and with a neutral software like NX2 without modification preferly in raw to keep the exif info,then we should know ,wich camera is right !!!!
    Waiting my D800E,but that’s what I’ll do first, after fonctions checking !

  • Banksie

    Both are off. But if you take the image into PS and check with the eyedropper in the info palette on a neutral spot (that gray conduit on the ceiling) you’ll see that the D800 screen is loaded with green. The D3s has closer to neutral numbers on the same spot. Although it’s not 100% neutral and has a bit more blue (obviously there can be a variation in that particular gray but it’s a good spot to use.) Same with the white wall behind the guy; a few points more blue in the D3s sample and a lot more green in the D800 sample. fwiw, I’m using an Eizo ColorEdge calibrated monitor.

  • Always the same story with Nikon. That’s why I’m Canon now.

    • Nick

      Do you mean they have one issue with one camera, and canon sends crap from the factory and updates firmware by the day? At least Nikon knows how to seal a camera from a light leak.

  • Alex

    Side-by -side, the pic on the right makes the pic on the left look too green. The reality is people may be drawn to the reds on the right, but the skin tone on the left pic is more accurate to real life.

  • One thing that I think many people may be overlooking here is the fact that the D800 shows the file as BEN_0035.JPG and the D3s shows it as BEN_0035.NEF

    While you can argue that the camera displays the embedded “JPEG” data from the NEF, does that necessarily match the JPG file exactly, or is the camera settings being applied to the “rendering” of the NEF’s JPG? I can’t say for sure and I’m not sure anyone else could give a definite answer either. The image should be shot as a JPEG only on one camera and then display compared from that processed JPG file on both.

    Another consideration is that the display settings can be “tweaked”, which may be partly why these do not display the same.

  • It is a problem with Nikon. The Auto balance is always OFF. The same goes for the screen preview.

    • Michael

      For me, no. I always have a problem with Canon, their white balance is always off.

  • Bruce

    Some of the newbie/ignoramus comments here are hilarious. So, ummm, ya think that little LCD on the back of your camera is for production quality/color matched output..????? RAOTFLMAO. GET OVER IT. It’s there for composition, basic exposure, and basic focus check. If you are actually relying upon it for correct exposure, absolute focus, and color balance then you are a M@R@N. Hahahahahahahaha…!

  • Jeff

    Who give a f_ck about the preview screen. I preview it on my Dell 27″ Ultrasharp. I can barely see the preview without my glasses on anyway. Shoot RAW and quit worrying about it.

  • Glenn

    The only green I see is when I look in the mirror and see me green with envy of those of you who have your D800/800E already.
    I have both on preorder and still waiting .

    One thing I have noticed about the D800’S is that it has converted photographers, amateurs and pros, into physicists/engineers who now pixl dive and discuss the properties and attributes of light waves. That seem to be most of the discussions I see all over the internet.
    I’m behind in my schooling. I thought the purpose of the D800 was to take pictures. (grin)
    (I’d like to see more of them and less of the subjects I took in University.)
    (Above said with humor, no insults intended)

  • Sean

    Best comparison to do is compare your rear screen to he actual scene, look at hem side by side….definitely on the green side but only in certin lighting situations, indoor non natural lighting, fluros etc.

  • I don’t know about green, but my D4 screen seems right on compared to my MacBook Pro. And when I show clients photos from the back of my D4, well, lets just say it helps me look good.
    . . . the photographer does have something to do with it. 😉

    don’t have a D3s anymore to compare it to.

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