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Nikon D600 vs. D800
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Nikon D600
Nikon D800

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September 2012   More Nikon Reviews   Nikon Lenses   All Reviews

2012 Full-Frame DSLR Comparison Table

Nikon D600 Review

Nikon D800 Review

Nikon D800E Review


The biggest things I see comparing the Nikon D600 to the Nikon D800 are smaller size, optimum resolution (D800 has too much!), a smaller sea of AF sensors, faster frame rate, less weight, and a much lower price.

The biggest annoyance is that the size of the region seen by the sea of AF sensors is smaller in the D600. Personally, I always seem to need to focus on something just outside the area covered by AF sensors with my existing cameras, so the D600 will bug me more. So what? Half the time all I use is the center sensor anyway; I'll take the U1 and U2 modes in exchange for a smaller AF region any day.

As time goes on, I can offer more, but as a shooter as opposed to a tweaker, the biggest reason I prefer the D600 over my D800E is that it's easy to reconfigure the D600 to what I'm trying to do with its U1 and U2 modes, while my D800 takes too long to reconfigure between shots.

I've owned the D800 and D800E for over five months, and the D300 and D3 with the same foolish "Menu Banks" system since 2007, and they make the cameras a mess to set and reconfigure for each kind of subject.

I greatly prefer the U1 and U2 modes of the D600 and D7000. With them, everything I need for one kind of shot or another I can preprogram, and I'm always ready to shoot.

36 MP is worse than 24 MP. No pro I know shoots above 10 MP; above 10 MP, all it does is slow your workflow so you can't get anything done. For most of my own work, I shoot at 6 MP.

24 MP is the optimum resolution for FX, considering noise, ISO, resolution and real-world lens sharpness. Above 24 MP in FX (or above 12 MP in DX), the noise reduction has to work so hard even at ISO 100 that it leaves visible artifacts to the very careful eye. In other words, anything above about 24 MP in FX or 12 MP in DX is starting to become a cross between a hoax and just a sales feature for the innocent, and regardless, the files start occupying a lot of memory, so unless you're a computer engineer for a living as opposed to a photographer, I prefer the 24 MP resolution of the D600.

Flash sync is a tiny bit slower in the D600, but it's only a third of a stop slower than any other current DSLR and the same as the Canon 5D Mark III, so no complaints from me. Give me 1/500 sync and I'd want it, but 1/250 is the same thing as 1/200 in actual use.

24 MP
36 MP
Frame Rate
5.5 FPS
U1 & U2 Modes?
AF settings easy save and recall?
External AF Controls
921k dots
921k dots
ISO normal
100 ~ 6,400
100 ~ 6,400
ISO with L- and H+ values
50 ~ 25,600
50 ~ 25,600
Sync Speed
AF Points
Portion of frame served by AF points
very small
Body toughness
Weight w/ card and battery

30.0 oz.

850 g.

35.1 oz.

994 g.

Price, 9/2012

See more also at Nikon D600 Compared.

I'll be adding more as I learn more.




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Mr. & Mrs. Ken Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.


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