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4 years, 4 months ago 10


Well, I’m ready to eat a big slice of humble pie, maybe a whole pie!  After one morning out shooting the D800 my reservations are washed away!  The camera simply makes files that are superior to anything I’ve ever seen in 43 years of photography, period.  Is it perfect?  We will see, because much more testing needs to be done, but I can tell you from one mornings shoot, I am going to own this camera, actually I already do, Nikon will never see this one again, I expect to be writing a check!  So let’s get down to business on this bad boy, and I do mean “bad” boy…..


So far I have determined that 36 mega-pixels “does” make a huge difference.  The biggest gain is, of course, resolution, but even more important the gradation (smoothness of tones across the scale)!  The images below show the full image, (all are jpeg fine, at ISO 100 shot from a tripod with a cable release ), followed by tight crops of the original image, prepare to be impressed!




So is there any penalty?  Not really.  The files are big (duh!) and they move through the computer slower than you’re used to, but not as slow as I had feared, I feel like it took about 2.5 times longer to crunch a 5 stop HDR, but when the image is finished, it’s worth the wait.  I will do some testing on how the noise looks at high ISO, but my partner in crime from Nikon, Scott Diussa, shot some stuff at 2,500 this morning and they were surprisingly clean, very little noise!  Last night I shot a hand held image in the room at ISO 1600 and was shocked, I had feared that with all that resolution hand holding would be iffy, not so, the image shot at 1/8oth of second was sharp!



So, tomorrow it’s more testing, or maybe just having a lot more fun, again!!!!!!  Tomorrow more low light, High ISO tests, and more.  Needless to say, I’m more than very impressed!


the pilgrim


Update:  After a full day of editing and processing D800 images, I have a few suggestions;


1.  If you buy a D800 go ahead and get some larger cards, 64 and 128 might work great, at least 32 & 64 gigs.


2.  Upping the Ram in your computer will also speed things along, I’m guessing 8 gigs will be enough, but then you never have “enough”  RAM!


3.  If you have not gotten a solid tripod, head, and cable release, it’s time!


For now that about covers it, more info to come!

4 years, 4 months ago 8


This last week and early this week, Nikon D4 and D800 cameras have started to be delivered, and the reviews are rolling in!  I got my production model of the D800 today, and tomorrow, the test begins.  I have really been looking forward to this camera that has raised so many questions!  How much of the 36 mega-pixel resolution will you really see?  How good will images look at High ISO?  How big will the files be?  Well we will know all that and a lot more very soon!  I intend to shoot the camera this week hard and really put it through it’s paces. Already DXO has rated the sensor the highest of any it has ever tested, a score of 95, even better than medium format sensors that are in cameras costing upwards of tens of thousands of dollars!!!!


What can I tell you right now?  The camera is solid, and feels very tough, the weight is not too heavy, but it is really well built, and is very much, every bit the tough feeling camera of the D700!  It feels a little thicker and feels great in the hands.  The viewfinder is big and very bright.  How big are the files?  First with a 32 gig card, you can shoot 957 jpeg Fine images, or 403 in RAW.  A RAW file opened in Capture NX2 came out to 43 megabytes, a jpeg Fine in the same software was 17.9, not as big and bad as I had feared!  I tried to shoot a few hand held, available light images with the camera in my hotel room at ISO 1600 and though this is far from a scientific test, they were razor sharp and no matter how much I enlarged them it only showed more detail, and noise was just, almost, non existent!!!!!  Of course the real test will be shots of highly detailed airplanes in great light, locked to solid tripod, and fired with a cable release!!  Can’t wait, and you will see the results later tomorrow!


One slight disappointment, I thought the camera could be fired by the little ML-L3 infrared remote, sadly I misread some literature before receiving the camera, it will work with the ML-3 Modulite, which I have, but not the little remote for the D90/D7000!  Only a small let down, but I do love those little remotes……


Tomorrow months of questions will start to be answered, I have to say, I’m very excited, I can see why so many have been ordered a D800, tomorrow and the rest of this week, I will find out, if I will join them!  Tune in!


Tonight’s Prayer:  Father, thank you for letting me do what I do for living.  I know that few people get to do what they love to do for their job,  don’t ever think that it is lost on my, what a blessing You have given me!  Amen.


the pilgrim

4 years, 4 months ago 0



Things well at the Florida Camera Council meeting.  Thanks so much for your prayers!  Both talks were well received and we had a lot of excited customers who wanted to talk about and ask questions about the D4 and D800. I met s lot of nice folks and got to visit with some great old friends.  Early this morning Wayne Bennett, Ken Blye, Robert Wicker, and I drive over to Marco Island before sunrise to photograph Burrowing Owls.  If you don’t know about these little fellows, they burrow into the ground to build a nest, thus their name, and they are really fun to watch.  They are very small a little bigger than soft drink can!  I’ve long insisted that the Nikon 70-300 AFS-VR f 4.5-5.6 zoom is a great lens, and again this morning it proved it’s value.  On my D7000 it is an equivilant 105-450 and was plenty long enough to shoot these little guys!


After morning address I headed for Lakeland and meeting up with the team for Sun n’ Fun!  I will post a lot of images this week from Sun n’ Fun.  On the drive up the road I saw and photographed some neat stuff, the largest strawberry man in America!, some killer color on an old building and cool fence that says “Keep Closed”.  I will work hard all week to bring you some more images.


This morning I shared images synchs set to music and one show I shared was the original “America From 500 Feet” show, it was a great reminder for me of just how much God has blessed my life, to get to do that project with Welsey and survive cancer to see all my kids grow up, and now give Sherelene and I,  6 grandchildren!


Be blessed,


the pilgrim






* Photo Notes:   Burrowing Owl – D7000 – 70-300 AFS-VR,   Mr. Strawberry, Colorful building, and Keep Closed Fence, all with the iPhone 4s, the two HDR with the App Simply HDR!


IMPORTANT NOTE:  I expect to get the D800 on Monday, I will wring it out this week and be posting and commenting all week!


4 years, 4 months ago 3


I am sure, I’m in Naples!  The Florida Camera Council is going well, and the people of Naples are too.  Hey I’m not against success, but when you’re in Naples it’s on display!  I couldn’t resist snapping this image of a beautiful Bentley convertable parked in front of my FJ when I went out to get my car tonight! &


I went off to have dinner with a couple of photographers friends, Wayne Bennett, and Ken Blye,  from the conference.  It was more than a pleasant conversation, it was an affirmation of all we have to be thankful for, and none of it involved a Bentley!   We talked about photography, of course, but soon the conversation went into much deeper things, like the most important things we valued in our lives.  When we got to that subject it soon was apparent that all of us held friends and family right up at the top.  For me faith takes first place, but family, and these kind of great friends are right at the zenith of things of real value.


Often when I work these kinds of shows I talk to people all day long about what camera or what lens, and of course I understand the enthusiasm, but the older I get the more my thoughts turn to other things, like friends.  Each night before I fall asleep I take a moment to talk to God and thank Him for all the blessings of the day.  Tonight, as every night, I will thank Him for Sherelene and my family, right after that I will thank Him for a great time with Wayne and Ken, and the wonderful group that came to Old Car City, whom I still think of often.  Jim Begley and Chuck Summers have been dear brothers and the list is way to countless to continue now.  One thing is for sure, it’s great to feel so blessed!!!!


the pilgrim