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Friday, 28 November 2008


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with all the comments and articles regarding the sony - nikon connection, I find it funny for the author to totally throw away the influence of nikon engineering and processing power on the quality of images that are coming from the nikons with sony sensors.

I wonder, who is the real attention parasite(pardon me)here. maybe the sonyphiles whos cameras are not even close in terms of color rendition, iso capabilities and etc to nikon cameras?. Im not a fanboy, but having been using D2x as well as the D3, the difference is completely obvious and not in favor of Sony.

Because, If sony cameras were so good, there would be completely no quality difference between the cameras and the images. This reminds me of comments that I saw with the D300/A700 comparison. Just because the Nikon uses a Sony sensor, doesn't mean that Sony's camera delivers the same image quality. And that will probably be the case with the new D3x. It's probably a sensor from sony, why not, but adjusted by Nikon. There was even an inside gossip that revealed Nikon being unhappy with Sony offerings, judging them not good enough to be in the Nikon cameras. I'm sure of course it will boost the ego of sonyphiles for a long long time. It's easy to predict that there will be a wave of happiness expressed by the Nikon user group,but it won't directly translate into saying that A900 is an equally good camera here. Oh boy, I can hear them screaming and fainting already.

It's easier to look at it if we see the obvious quality difference that is between the old D2x/D200 with sony sensors to the new D3 electronics, and again backwards with the D300/D3x, which of course, being better then the D2x/d200 generation, still not there with the D3 and sony not being close to D300 and D3x (probably, haven't seen any images yet.)


So, will that recently released D700 now drop to a reasonable price? Still feel $3000.00
in anybody's book is way too much to spend upon any piece of photographic gear,
especially for somebody such as myself who
can go from one week to the next and never pick up a camera.

I have never understood the small sensors in
the pre FX designated digital cameras.

Much prefer to look through the viewfinder and know from past experience the resulting
image. With film you knew, with old (preFX)
digital I never knew. With FX being as
film, I'd know the result.

However that price has to come down, maybe to
$1500.00 here in Canada. I don't care for the D90 and the new to me D80 has not been
used a great deal, maybe two hundred

Maybe some body on list has a better idea.

I'd be willing to listen.

Whoa, fanboy. I don't go with "probablys." I have no idea if the Sony or the Nikon is a little better or a little worse, and I frankly don't really care either way--all I meant was that people who would never try the A900 are now going to find out for the first time what a full-frame 24-MP sensor is really all about, and what it does for image quality.

We're going to be reading an awful lot of superlatives when the D3X makes it into peoples' hands.

Mike J.

One thing we'll know for sure about this camera is it's going to be different than the D3 when it comes to high ISO performance. So it's a camera for different shooters, or at least different situations. I'm going to be more than happy with a D3. More megapixels at the cost of high ISO performance is not a good trade-off for me. Shooting available light 1900 meters underground in a mine in Colombia is my bag, not motionless objects in a studio. Which I do too, but even there the D3 is more than adequate.

Hi Eric,
Agreed--not with your conclusion necessarily, but with the idea that these are going to be complementary solutions best suited for different kinds of photographers. Just one word to the wise, however--don't dismiss the D3X entirely until you use it. The Sony is the only high-MP camera I've used, but I found it enormously impressive in ways I wasn't expecting to. The image quality is really something. No doubt you're correct when you say you need the D3 more, but the D3X might impress you too, in different ways.

Mike J.

Any idea what is meant by "unique OLPF (optical low pass filter)" from the scanned article? Is this just the anti-alaising filter or something different, and what makes it unique???

"We're going to be reading an awful lot of superlatives when the D3X makes it into peoples' hands."

There are plenty of people with more dollars than sense already lining up to be the first person on their block with this camera. Their reasons having less to do with "needing" 24.5 megapixel than thinking that they need 24.5 megapixel to magically transform their photography from mediocre to something greater or so they can make bedspread-sized images at 300ppi because they read someplace how the human visual acuity is that.

Personally, I get a bit tired of the constantly sliding scale of "acceptability". I have been around long enough to recall a certain reviewer on another website proudly proclaim that a 3MP DSLR trumped 35mm Provia. In looking back, we now realize how wrong we were then, and again when 6MP became king. And then when 8MP became available. 10MP, 12MP? Another stepping stone through digital obsolecense. I also remember when the D2X arrived with such fanfair. Anybody still using it? Doesn't sound like it because if it isn't "full-frame" it's garbage. No "serious" photographer would be caught dead with a cropped-format sensor.

It is also very apparant that we all have gotten sucked into the numbers game: Size, ISO, MP. But who among us is asking the questions of color latitude, color response curves and whether or not the camera will even render skintones acceptably. Oh, wait, I forgot, that doesn't matter because we can just create a Photoshop Action to "fix" the pictures later. No camera manufacturer has been able to get two models to render colors the same. I suppose this matters not, because noiseless ISO 6400 images at 24.5 megapixels is all that matters.

Somehow, I sense that this camera won't be able to render purple flowers purple either. But they will be the most detailed blue flowers you'll have ever seen.


Sony does seem to be frightening Canikon fanboys into denial, just like those going to AA and getting up and saying I'm not an a.....

All I will say before actually trying a D3x, is that dealers should be advised to have a paramedic on duty when the fanboys look at the price sticker.

Unless you are downsizing from a Hassie or Rollei.

Bryce- I bought an "as new" 20-35mm Nikkor zoom three years ago for $400- it was the last equipment purchase (other than a bag) I've made to date. I knew that eventually Nikon would have to make that full frame body- but I also knew deep down that I too wouldn't be able to afford it. Maybe one day we'll both experience that $1,500 FF, till then I'm happy with my Luddite F100.


Somehow, I sense that this camera won't be able to render purple flowers purple either. But they will be the most detailed blue flowers you'll have ever seen.


Well Ken,

I'm not quite as concerned with finding "truth" in my photos but I understand how others can be. You are after that truth in color and others are after truth in say, dynamic range.

All my photos are fakes.

Finally, Nikon produces a camera that makes me slightly unhappy with my K10D. Is it the megapixels? The price? The 5:4 crop function? The size? The name? No! It's the ISO 50.

Everyone is clamouring for ISO 6,400, 12,800, 819,200! I often shoot in low light, and do appreciate good high-ISO performance, but I would also love a camera that does ISO 50 and 25. Is the D3X the first to go below ISO 100? Whatever the case, bravo to Nikon.

Soon all the A900 users are going to find out just how good the 5D MkII is. ;-)


I'm quaking in my boots....



In reply to Ken's post:

I have the sense that there is an underlying practical objective in the MP race, that has nothing to do with people imagining that their photography will get better (though that may be a factor for some.)

For people who collect art, there is a size minimum that seems to work best. I would suggest that minimum is somewhere around 16x20 inches, or even a little larger -- as a minimum. This has to do with the size of people's walls and houses, and the distances that art is usually viewed from, which is often determined by the placement of furniture, the width of hallways, etc. The objective here is to have photos that look sharp at those sizes of 16x20, 24x30, etc. In the past, this was mostly achievable with large format or perhaps medium format cameras. You couldn't really do it with 35mm-sized cameras, where a really sharp-appearing 11x14 was difficult to get, except with great equipment and probably a tripod. Digital is enough better than film that it's now possible to print good sharp street photography, for example, at prime viewing sizes. I know that some people enjoy smaller sizes (which are usually referred to as "exquisite" or "jewel-like,") but for most people, art (including photographs) function as decoration, and in modern houses are meant to be viewed usually at distances of 4 feet or slightly more. (Think of it this way: easily and critically viewable across a couch.) You can do that with 20+ mp sensors and a good printer; but you can't even with a good 12mp without uprezzing and inventing information. So that's why I think there was a race to a particular size/resolution combination. We're now there (although we could always use more) and so I think the race for more mp will slow, and now we'll see talk of DR and so on.

I think digital caught film at 6mp, for all practical purposes. A D3 is quite a bit better than any film that we had. As for purple flowers, try to adjust Velvia sometime, when you don't like the over-purple. At least digital photos *are* adjustable.


Mike, I agree with your comments on what an impact a high res sensor can have on image quality - albeit from the lowlands of only 21Mp:) The step from 12Mp to 21 is real and useful and I hope that some D3 people try it.


A little late, but ...

Michael Reichman, who's used more than his fair share of high end gear, cancelled his D3x order while mulling over the $8000 price tag after using the A900 and Zeiss lenses for a time and seeing how good they are. I saw some big prints (guessing 30"x40" and maybe bigger) from the A900 up close and in person at Photoplus Expo in November. They trounce big prints made from 35mm Velvia.

Just for the sake of argument, let's say the D3x is a little better; a touch more dynamic range or a little "better" color in some way. The results I've seen from the A900 are so good, it's hard to say in what way the D3x could be noticably better to all but the most dedicated pixel peeper.

The D3x is a pro camera with built in vertical grip and weather sealing. Versus the A900's $3000 price tag, it's easy to see it as a pretty good deal for $5000 and Nikon system owners feeling okay about buying it for a bit more than that. Instead, Nikon owners get to pay a $2-$3K premium to shoot 24MP without having to switch systems. Nikon may have picked up a few new users with the D3/D700 but I doubt the D3x is going to help their market share.


There's nothing in the IQ between the D300 and A700 cameras if you shoot in RAW. The latest firmware for the A700 gets rid of the (idiotic!) mandatory RAW noise reduction for the Sony, and now you can get indistinguishable results from both cameras.

I'm quite sure the same will be the case with Alpha 900 / D3x.

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