Here is a quick comparison of ISO performance (low ISO and high ISO) between the Nikon D600, Nikon D700, Nikon D800E and Nikon D3s. Please note that all of the images below were shot in JPEG, since Nikon D600 RAW support is not available yet. All images were also down-sampled to the Nikon D700/D3s resolution (cameras with the lowest resolution). Everything was shot in ambient light (lab results are posted in the Nikon D600 review here) with all camera corrections turned off and camera profile set to standard (default, no changes). Cropping and export was performed in Lightroom 4 and I used Photoshop to add the text on the bottom of each image.
Received the Nikon D600 today. The battery is charging now, but I could not wait and started using my D800E battery. I am pretty excited about the D600, especially after DxOMark ranked its sensor the second best in the world. Now I need to verify that claim with real image sample comparisons, especially at high ISOs. Cameras to be tested today: Nikon D700, Nikon D800E, Nikon D3s. I have access to the D4 and D7000, but most likely won’t be able to do those today, before my trip to San Juan Mountains (the Landscape Photography Workshop will take place this weekend).
A couple of quick notes before the upcoming Nikon D600 review:
- The viewfinder is huge! It is as big as the one on the Nikon D800. If you are upgrading from a Nikon D7000 or any other DX camera, this alone is worth the upgrade in my opinion.
- The 39 focus points are not as concentrated in the center as I thought they would be. Yes, the D800 has a bigger spread, but it is not a big difference between the two. Just like I have pointed out in my Nikon D600 limitations article, the Multi-CAM 4800FX is indeed designed differently than the DX version.
- Although the analysis is preliminary, autofocus seems to be fast and accurate – I would say on par with the Nikon D800 (yes, that extra light in FX does make a difference).
- The – and + indicators are still reversed. I think we will see this behavior as default on all future Nikon DSLRs.
- The multi-function button is smaller on the D600 compared to the one on the D800 (not a big deal, but I like it bigger).
- Image quality is phenomenal (samples to follow in the upcoming review).
When Nikon announced the Nikon D600, I knew the new sensor would not disappoint. Since the D3, Nikon has put a lot of focus on sensor technology and A/D conversion. As a result, almost every single sensor that has been released during the last few years has been ranked very highly by many reviewers and image labs. As you may already know, DxOMark has been testing most new digital cameras on the market today (including medium format) and they crowned the Nikon D800E sensor as the best in the world earlier this year. Today, DxOMark released its rating for the Nikon D600:
In the new article that DxOMark published today, it says “the D600 is an affordable camera that places a high premium on image quality, as it ranks just behind the top performing Nikon D800 and Nikon D800E. It is also a significant improvement over the high-end professional flagship DSLRs, the Nikon D3X and the Nikon D4″. And here is an excerpt from their conclusion: “As an added bonus, the camera provides users extreme value, as noted through its DxOMark sensor score of 94, which puts it in an elite category currently occupied by two additional Nikon cameras”.
Looks like the sensor on the Nikon D600 is almost as remarkable as the one on the Nikon D800. The overall score of the sensor was just one point below the Nikon D800 and two points below the Nikon D800E (which has the same sensor as the D800, but a different anti-aliasing filter).
Here is a comparison of the D600 with the D800 and D4:
Very impressive! Take a look at the Low-Light ISO figures – the D600 has the highest score there. Detailed image analysis and comparisons will be provided this week.
With Canon having recently announced its take on budget DSLRs, the Canon 6D, the most obvious rival just happens to be the brand new Nikon D600. We’ve already seen how the latter stacks up, at least on-paper, with such great cameras as D700 and D800, but neither of those cameras were direct rivals. Priced at the same relatively low price for a full-frame sensor camera, $2099 body only, Canon 6D is as direct a rival as it can get. Lets see how it measures up against its Nikon counterpart spec-wise. Please keep in mind that this Nikon D600 vs Canon 6D comparison is purely based on specifications. A detailed comparison with image samples and ISO comparisons will be provided in the upcoming Canon 6D Review.
UPDATE: there has been a misleading set of specifications spread throughout the internet, indicating that the top shutter speed of Canon 6D is 1/8000th of a second. It’s incorrect – according to official Canon specifications, the top shutter speed of their newly announced “budget” full-frame camera is 1/4000th of a second.
Usually, it takes Canon a while to start delivering some of their cameras. Hopefully, 6D will not take long to reach owners. Our most trusted reseller, B&H, is already taking pre-orders.
Canon EOS 6D Pre-Order Information
Canon has just announced its latest DSLR and a direct competitor to the already highly popular D600. The Canon EOS 6D offers a new 20.2 megapixel full-frame sensor, 11-point autofocus system with one cross-type sensor, 3.2″ 1.04 million dot screen and 4.5 frames per second. According to Canon, 6D is similarly sized as it’s sister, APS-C sensor EOS 60D, and it sure look similar – add a taller prism and take pop-up flash compartment. Use of old autofocus system might not sound too good, but Canon promises it’s their most sensitive AF system to date (which should probably include 1DX and 5DIII), offering reliable AF in -3EV (moonlight). The 6D also boasts in-build GPS and WiFi capability.
Nasim will prepare a thorough review as soon as he has enough experience with the camera, so stay tuned!
- Sensor: 20.2 MP CMOS
- Sensor Size: 36 x 24mm
- Resolution: 5472 x 3648
- Native ISO Sensitivity: 100-25,600
- Boost Low ISO Sensitivity: 50
- Boost High ISO Sensitivity: 51200, 102400
- Processor: Digic 5+
- White Balance presets: 6
- Dust Reduction: Yes
- Weather Sealing/Protection: Yes
- Body Build: Magnesium Alloy with Plastic top plate
- Shutter: 30s-1/4000s
- Storage: 1 SD/SDHC/SDXC slot
- Viewfinder Coverage/Magnification: 97%/0.71x
- Speed: 4.5 fps
- Metering Modes: Multi, Center-weighted, Spot, Partial
- Metering Sensor: 63-Zone Dual Layer
- Built-in Flash: NO
- Flash sync speed: 1/180s
- Autofocus options: Contrast Detect (sensor), Phase Detect, Multi-area, Selective single-point, Single, Continuous, Face Detection, via Live View
- Autofocus System: 11-point with one cross-type (center point), sensitive down to -3EV
- LCD Screen: 3.2 inch diagonal with 1,040,000 dots
- Video capabilities: h.264 with mono mic and speakers, manual controls, 1920 x 1080 (29.97, 25, 23.976 fps), 1280 x 720 (59.94, 50 fps), 640 x 480 (25, 30 fps)
- In-Camera HDR Capability: Yes
- GPS/WiFi: built-in/built-in
- Connectivity: USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec), HDMI Mini, WiFi (built-in), remote control with N3 type contact, Wireless Controller LC-5, Remote Controller RC-6
- Battery Type: Lithium-Ion LP-E6 rechargeable battery & charger
- Weight: 770 g (1.70 lb / 27.16 oz) with battery
- Price: $2099 body only
With Sony’s big week coming to an end (they’ve announced more new products than other manufacturers, with all of them being quite exciting), we’ve missed a couple of announcements, which haven’t been directly relevant to this photography-centered website (at least for now). Both of these announcements were of their new NEX series camcorders, the NEX-VG30 and NEX-VG900. The former is a successor to the great NEX-VG20H camcorder and packs a 16 megapixel, APS-C sized sensor found in many of Sony cameras, such as NEX-6 and SLT-A57. Both new camcorders come with rather advanced video capabilities and will likely be very popular among videographers – I’ve had to trade ergonomics in favor of technical and aesthetical quality of DSLR video for a while now, and so have a couple of my close friends. With the great NEX camcorders Sony offers, both new and old models, you can get everything and for a relatively low price.
But, again, we are photography-centered at this time. Which, ironically, brings us to (the more expensive of the two) NEX-VG900 camcorder.
Why? Because it’s the first NEX mirrorless camera (which it is, only put in camcorder casing) to pack a full frame sensor, same one used in RX1 compact and A99 SLT cameras (and possibly the already immensely popular Nikon D600). And it does bring a thought. I’m not usually one to speculate, or spread rumors for that matter, but photography community has been waiting a long time for a logically priced Leica M9 (and Leica isn’t about being logical, which, strangely enough, makes sense in today’s viciously competitive market).
So.. How about a NEX-9 instead?
Since the Nikon D600 DSLR has been released this morning, I have been receiving a number of emails and comments about it from our readers. Looks like there is some confusion about the capabilities and limitations of the camera. A number of online resources are talking about the D600 and thanks to some famous bloggers, people now think that the D600 has serious problems. I am not here to defend the camera that I have not touched yet, but I would like to clarify these issues so that there is no misunderstanding or confusion.
1) Sharp Images
After I posted the Nikon D600 Sample Images, some of our readers started questioning the quality of the camera, blaming softer images (particularly from the owl shot) on the camera. First of all (and I am sure most photographers already know this), the softness of images has little to do with the camera. Even the cheapest entry-level DSLRs like the D3200 are capable of producing very sharp images. Take a look at my article on making sharp images and you will know exactly what I mean.
Looks like our friends at B&H are already accepting pre-orders for the Nikon D600. Here are the links for the body-only and body+kit options, along with links to the new UT-1 unit:
Nikon D600 Pre-Order Information
- Nikon D600 Body Only for $2099 at B&H
- Nikon D600 kit with Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G ED VR for $2699 at B&H
- Nikon UT-1 (pricing not yet available)
Here is another quick specifications comparison between the new Nikon D600 and the D800 that was announced earlier in 2012. I am sure many photographers will be interested in seeing feature differences between the resolution king, the D800, and the $900 cheaper D600. Looks like both cameras are quickly becoming popular among many amateur and professional photographers, so what feature advantages does the former offer over the latter? Let’s take a look in this Nikon D600 vs D800 comparison. Please keep in mind that this comparison is purely based on specifications. A detailed comparison with image samples and ISO comparisons is provided in the Nikon D600 Review right here.