Nikon D600 is here!

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).

Nikon D600 Box

A couple of quick notes before the upcoming Nikon D600 review:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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).
  4. The – and + indicators are still reversed. I think we will see this behavior as default on all future Nikon DSLRs.
  5. 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).
  6. Image quality is phenomenal (samples to follow in the upcoming review).

My next task is to evaluate its AF accuracy and make sure that the camera does not have the same issues as the original Nikon D800/D800E shipments. This one will take me a while, but I should have an update by tomorrow. I also have two other units coming in for a detailed analysis. I want to check what Nikon has done since the bumpy D800 launch in terms of AF issues. I hope to see all 3 units without any problems.

Any other requests from our fellow readers?

P.S. Looks like Nikon did a great job with providing enough stock this time. B&H Photo Video has the Nikon D600 in stock right now and almost every other retailer I have checked has enough stock as well. This camera will sell like crazy! I am keeping this one and will most likely keep the second unit as another backup.

NOTE: A detailed, in-depth review of Nikon D600 has been posted.


  1. 1) Sahajpal Rai
    September 19, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    Can you also validate the green cast on shots and screen?

    • September 19, 2012 at 4:36 pm

      To be honest, the green cast was never noticeable for me on the D800/D800E. I believe it was a screen issue, but the LCD is not something I really care about when taking pictures (aside from checking image sharpness). I always shoot RAW, so I do not worry about setting correct white balance either…

      • 1.1.1) Sahajpal Rai
        September 19, 2012 at 5:06 pm

        Well Naim — I am getting the green casting in both screen and raw file too. I called Nikon today and they are looking into it. I may drop my camera at shop which is 30 miles away from my work.

        • flap
          September 19, 2012 at 8:10 pm

          If you’re shooting raw you can’t just fix it in post when you run it through a raw converter? Wasn’t Nikon’s official position that they recalibrated the screen in the D800 to make it more accurate?

        • Albert
          September 19, 2012 at 8:19 pm

          Green casting in comparison to what? If both LCD and the RAW produce the same result, doesn’t it mean the LCD shows an accurate colour of the RAW?
          Probably the problem is wrong WB or your PC monitor calibration?

          • Sahajpal Rai
            September 21, 2012 at 10:26 am

            Don’t worry, Nikon wants my camera to see the issue and according to them they have fix , only for those who bring to them not for public ally publish.

          • Gabor
            September 25, 2012 at 10:57 am

            The thing is that if you take picture and look it on the LCD on the D800 it is greenish. If you process it in the camera to a jpeg – already in the process menu- it comes back very nice…like it should be. So definitively there is some trouble with it. I really hope that Nikon will solve this issue.

      • 1.1.2) Jorge Balarin
        September 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

        Hi Nasim,

        About the green cast I must say that some weeks ago I rented a D800, and I shoot with it, along with my D700. Still I didn’t processed the D800 photos (left autofocus accuracy in the sample I used is still a mistery), but I noticed the green cast in the screen of the sample (I didn’t know anything about it, so it was not a “placebo” effect. It was quiet noticeable and I thought: “I hope I’m not going to see the photos this way in my computer”).

    • 1.2) David C.
      September 20, 2012 at 10:31 am

      Hi! I have a question: I had to stop using my D3X because the camera shutter sound is so high it would disturb my subjects(priests in morning prayers, churches) and so started using Pentax K5’s for that(even less noisy than my Leica M4). Is the D600 shutter significantly quieter than the D800’s like I have been hearing, more like the D7000’s? I am not talking about the Q mode, but just single shots unless there is an even quieter single shot mode for it. Thanks loads for answering this!


  2. September 19, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    Awesome Nasim!

    I can’t wait to see your review on D600. I recently settled for a D800 but am not completely happy with the left focus issue. I tested using the method you had provided and also followed Tom Hogan’s method and found Left AF issues with 2 copies of D800 and have similar issues on the third one.

    I am ready to sacrifice the pro-qualities in D800 and go for D600 if the focus accuracy is better on this. My only nit – timer remote works only on GPS port..not a big fan of that ..

    • September 19, 2012 at 4:38 pm

      Raja, the D800 is a superior camera compared to the D600. Have you sent your D800 to Nikon for repair? Personally, I love my D800E, although it has some really bad AF problems (will be sending it to Nikon after my trip to San Juan Mountains).

      • 2.1.1) St.
        September 19, 2012 at 6:22 pm

        I send my D800 twice to Nikon. First time it was almost there, but there was difference between phase and contrast detection (with and without live view) – quite visible. They also scratched my memory card door (Nasim knows about that). I sent the camera second time – they replaced the door and fine tuned it. It’s a killer now!!!
        I’m thinking of replacing it with D800E though and get D600. Would that be a smart choice (besides being more expensive)?

      • September 19, 2012 at 6:39 pm


        I have a few options:

        1. Return the camera to the retailer (as I am within the 30 day return window)
        2. Send it back to Nikon and have it fixed.
        3. Purchase a D800E as my friends D800E doesn’t have any Left AF issues (not sure if it is because they are produced in smaller numbers and the QC is different)
        4. Purchase a D600 with a few compromises and buy a D800 or D800s when Nikon acknowledges the issue and fixes this (assuming D600 doesn’t have any left AF issues)

        Honestly I am tired of testing with test charts instead of shooting happily with the camera.

        Any thoughts about settling for the D600 besides the 1/4000 shutter speed limitation and less sophisticated focus system?


  3. 3) Pavan
    September 19, 2012 at 4:30 pm

    Nasim, this is all I needed to make a decision. I placed the order on the D600, thank you so much for doing this!!!!!

    • September 19, 2012 at 4:39 pm

      Pavan, more info will be posted soon, so stay tuned.

      • 3.1.1) St.
        September 19, 2012 at 10:05 pm

        Hey Nasim, I would really like to see high ISO comparison b/w D600, D800 and D800E. Right next to each other. You can add D4 if you can take it as well.

  4. 4) Max
    September 19, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    Good news

    1. I am interested to know about live-view focusing performance.
    My D3200 has very slow live-view focusing comparing to non liveview. all canons has fast live quick
    focus(and fast) in liveview.

    2. Also a few words for low light noise in video mode will be appreciated.

    From Nikon website:
    “Noise reduction optimized for movie recording effectively reduces noise, while maintaining definition. Smooth gradation with minimum block noise which tends to occur in compression, and movie recording with reduced random noise at high ISO setting are realized”

    Only for that i want to upgrade since i shoot night videos. Just Frustrated from my camera video noise :(
    My latest lowlight d3200 video from Thailand

    Thanks Nasim

    • 4.1) Rohan
      September 19, 2012 at 7:45 pm

      Max, Fantastic video. Extremely well done. This goes to prove it’s the photographer / artist and not the tool. kudos!

  5. 5) Mike Paredes
    September 19, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Looking forward to see if my recent purchase of a gently-used D700 for $1700 wins poor-timing-of-the-year award, Nasim!

    • 5.1) Jorge Balarin
      September 20, 2012 at 9:38 am

      The D700 is a great camera. You can trust on it.

  6. 6) Sahajpal Rai
    September 19, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    Well Naim — I am getting the green casting in both screen and raw file too. I called Nikon today and they are looking into it. I may drop my camera at shop which is 30 miles away from my work.

  7. 7) Rafael Machado
    September 19, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    Nice Nasim, Are you gonna do the review of Canon 6D too?

  8. 8) EagleS
    September 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    ok great i have seen an on-field review with D600 on the presenter said that AF is almost if not the same as D800

  9. 9) Erwin
    September 19, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Looking forward on the d700 and d600 high ISO image comparison.

  10. 10) Malcolm
    September 19, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    Good to hear that the image quality is looking great as I am one looking at upgrading to this camera. How does the video look? Do you think they have caught up to Canon on that front yet? (Ps. more interested in the still capabilities but am still quite interested!)

  11. 11) S Sune
    September 19, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I’d be interested in Your opinion on how the D600 would do as a backup camera for a D700,

    • 11.1) Jorge Balarin
      September 20, 2012 at 9:41 am

      Ideally the D600 would be the backup.

  12. 12) William Jones
    September 19, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    Picked up a D600 at Best Buy today (cancelled order from Adorama). Too dark for proper testing, however will do so tomorrow. Questions:

    Does ViewNX2 work on these NEF files yet? If not, besides in-camera processing, how to process NEF files from this camera? I use DxO, and the update from them will most likely be one to two months away.

    I plan on testing tomorrow with the 24 f/1.4 (same scene, tripod, ISO 100 thru 25,600). Will shoot in JPG if can’t process NEF. Would you like me to post to a gallery for review? I might also test with the 85 f/1.4 in the same manner.

    I am scheduled to shoot some polo tomorrow afternoon (late, using the 80-400 lens), plus high school football on Friday night (will use the 80-200 lens), plus more polo on Saturday, late morning thru noon time (again with the 80-400 lens). If you would like to know when pics are posted, I can add a follow-up posting with links. Just let me know via E-mail.

    Nasim, good luck on your photo trip.


    • 12.1) William Jones
      September 19, 2012 at 7:52 pm

      Have tested with ViewNX2, and it will read, edit and process NEF files from the D600. DxO does not yet.

    • 12.2) Jorge Balarin
      September 20, 2012 at 9:53 am

      It would be nice to to see many reviews.

  13. 13) TimR
    September 19, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    I just seen a video review of the D600 by the Camera Store’s Chris Niccolls on youtube, He discovered that the Aperture mode is locked up while in live view.. Will you be looking into that issue and perhaps finding a solution around it… ie: adjusting aperture in manual mode while in live view


  14. 14) Jay
    September 19, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I am interested to know 3 things:

    1. Difference in regards to low light capabilities compared to Nikon D700.

    2. Would like to know how the skin tones are rendered. Are they similar to the D800?

    3. Auto focus – how fast and is it reliable compared to the auto – focus of the Nikon D7000?



    • 14.1) Sebastiano
      September 20, 2012 at 4:03 am

      Hi Nasim,
      thank yoi very, very much for the review you’re going to post here!
      I’m really looking forward to know if some of the issues I felt about the D600 body and capabilities are issues or minor details.

      Like Jay and many friends here in the forum I’m really curious to know if the 4800Fx is comparable to 3500Fx accuracy and precision, for general photography like macros, low key and low light portraits, landscape photography, street, and so on with the many styles an enthusiast plays with his gear.

      Also, like Jay, issue 1 & 2 are very important for me, as I’m very unsure if buying a D700 for about 2300$ as new (the price here in Italy) or a comparable priced D600.

      The Dx crop on D600 would be a benefit for me that would allow me to use cropped shots made with the 80-200 f/2.8 without any TX extender.

      But one of my main issues about the D600 is its body and its ergonomics (where is the AF-ON in D600 :/, is its body too poor to resist to accidental “soft crashes”, the one you can have if the camera falled on the floor when changing the lens – that happened to me with my “rocky” D70s ;) ).

      Some people in Nikon Italy forum talks also about the poor performances the polycarbonate front body has when attached an heavy lens on (such as. 80-200 f/2.8); some of them talk about the lens focal plane disallignment respect to the camera focal plane, expecially when you use to shoot in direct sunlinght during summer, ad the polycarbonate bends a little bit. They say nothing is so strong like D700 or D800 body on this aspect.
      Well, I’m not used to frequently shoot in deserts, so … :)

      Thanks in advance, Sebastiano

      • 14.1.1) JR
        September 20, 2012 at 9:56 am

        Hi Sebastiano,

        I’ve used the 80-200 f2.8 extensively with a D7000 and haven’t experienced any of these “bending” issues that you speak of. The heat would have to be *EXTREMELY* high, and I’ve shot in the southwestern desert of the USA where the temperatures go higher than 115degF on a regular basis and I’ve never experienced anything remotely close to what you’re describing.

        Perhaps if you hold the body, while letting the lens hang without assistance, and do so over a prolonged period of time, the lens mount could bend away from the body. I’ve never heard of such a thing, but it’s possible, I suppose. When I shoot with the D7000 and the 80-200 f2.8, or any other body with such a heavy lens, I always hold the lens with my left hand and put my right hand on the body. Most of the weight is held by my left hand. In fact, it’s much more comfortable to hold that combination with only ONE hand…the left(in my case). It balances perfectly. But to allow the lens to hang while holding the camera with one hand is not comfortable and painful!

        As for people talking about dropping their bodies and lenses as if though it’s a daily occurrence: If you drop, or severely bump, your gear, then you’re not being careful enough. I can’t imagine any circumstance, other than rapid-fire news reporting or standing on the sidelines of a rugby game, where a photographer would be exposed to harming their gear on a regular basis. This is coming from someone who lives in Colorado and shoots around rocks and jagged edges, all of the time. In over 25 years of shooting, I’ve not hurt a single piece of camera gear. Slight scratches, yes, but drops or hard knocks? NEVER! Camera gear costs too much $$$ to be careless with it.

        That said, I wouldn’t hesitate shooting with a D600 and an 80-200 f.2.8. I’ll be testing that very combo next weekend and there shouldn’t be any problems. Although I wish I had the D600 grip, but it looks like it won’t be available for a while longer.

        • Sebastiano
          September 21, 2012 at 5:58 am

          Thanks very much, JR.

          I supposed the problems some people on the Nikon Italy official forum were talking about could be caused by not being careful enough.
          It reassures me so much your experience in the desert with the “smaller” D7000 and 80-200f/2.8, I think that even of polycarbonate the body of all Nikon DSLR is not so weak as a poor plastic dustbin. How strong they will feel my D70s? I think not so much, as it is not enough “professionale”, they say.
          Even though it had a nasty experience as I told you before, and it has perfeclty worked since that day as it never had happened.

          One of my issues, perhaps the most important, has now been overcome thanks to your post.

          Now the only 2 issues that worry me a little bit are if the AF-ON button assigned to the Fn is confortable to use when rapidly shooting and, most of all, if the AF is accurate as the D700’s because of its smaller coverage area.

          I’ll look forward to your photos shot with 80-200 f/2.8 and your new D600.

          Thanks so much again, Sebastiano

    • 14.2) javier
      September 20, 2012 at 8:23 am

      Here you can see a low-light comparison between the D600 and the D700, showing that the D600 performs WAY better than the D700. It’s been 4 years of tech improvements, after all…

  15. 15) Kyle W
    September 19, 2012 at 7:55 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I’m sure B&H likes you better, they shipped mine today, so hopefully will arrive soon! Interested in how light AF performance with various lenses. I’m trying to decide b/t 24-70 nikon or stabilized tamron.

    • 15.1) Kyle W
      September 19, 2012 at 7:56 pm

      how = low

  16. 16) pb
    September 19, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    this is to Thankyu for especially a dressing the issue of the viewfinder

    the rectangular shape vs the circular one really did have me puzzled

    ccan’t wait for the rest of the test review

    a sharp accurate and reliable auto focus shud nail it for me

  17. 17) Jeff M
    September 19, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    I’m really looking forward to your review – the comparisons you’ll be making (D700/D800E/D3s) are exactly the models I’m considering now vs. the D600.

    I’m already guessing that the D600 will fare better than the D3s in terms of landscape work, and what I’m curious to know is how the D600 will handle low-light scenarios compared to the D3s. My main concern with the D800/E is that it’s not really ideal for event/street photography.

    So I’m definitely looking forward to reading your conclusions/comparisons Nasim!

  18. 18) Savvy
    September 19, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    a quick user update regarding the D600 I would like to share with all others out there.
    I picked up my D600 day before yesterday here is Australia and so far I give it a big thumbs up :)) … the image quality is truly amazing and so far no focusing issues like I experienced with the D7000 (and I was almost convinced by others that it was User error!)
    I had my doubts initially regarding the use of the 39 AF 4800FX module in the D600 (as I had owned and subsequently returned two D7000’s in the past that due to ridiculous inconsistent focusing errors ….) but after some quick testing in AF-S (selecting points from all over the screen) and my 50 f/1.8 G @1.8 the focus is spot on and with almost 100% accuracy … no AF Fine tune required for the lens! … It seems, as you said the AF module in the D600 is in fact a variant of the original 4800…. I am so glad I waited this long to jump to Full Frame, and at last I get to ressurect some of my older film lenses such as my Nikon 18-35 f/3.5-4.5D and the older style Nikon 24-85 AF-S lens … the latest DxO numbers support its image capabilities

    • 18.1) Simon
      September 20, 2012 at 1:31 am

      Thanks for your positive feedback. I am glad your D600 autofocuses great!

      As regards Nikon’s quality control: for me the jury is still OUT… Just remember this is a sample size of ONE.

      Nasim, you mentioned on another thread that new D800 units currently shipping do not have AF issues. Can you confirm this and what is your source for this (if you don’t mind). Thanks.


      • 18.1.1) Savvy
        September 21, 2012 at 3:25 am

        Yep, totally agree with you Simon. Its only one camera and I have been quite disappointed with Nikon’s QC after my D7000 experiences. So far for me at least the D600 has restored some of my faith in them. But it is with a cautious stance I say that I have nothing but high praise for the D600 so far. The image quality is superb and a bit of an eye opener from me. I think Nikon has a potential winner on their hands with this cam.

    • 18.2) Jorge Balarin
      September 20, 2012 at 9:59 am

      Thanks Savy, you give us some hope.

  19. 19) kim
    September 19, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Would be interested to know how certain lenses perform on this sensor. It has been surprising to see in reviewing DXO Mark how well a lens may perform on one camera than another. After reading your reviews of the 24-120 mm f/4 and 24-70 f/2.8, I was planning to purchase the 24-120 mm but then looked at the performance on the D700, D3X and D4 and was surprised, and did not know if this lens will fare as well as the 24-70 mm f/2.8 on the D600. I also am interested in 80-200 mm f/2.8 vs. 70-200 mm f2.8 as weight is an issue with carrying a lens for me, and would like to go with the lighter one if it performs well. And finally, the 70-300 mm f4.5-5.6G ED IF AF-S VR to get some distance. Thank you.

  20. 20) John C
    September 19, 2012 at 10:06 pm

    I think the most interesting comparison may be the D600 vs the D4. I suspect that the images from the D600 will be clearly superior. Obviously the D4 can shoot more fps and has a pro feature set, but an extra $4000 is a lot of extra cash for those features unless you really need them! Even then it is still a lot of cash!

    I would guess that Nikon ‘handicapped’ the D600 in these areas as not to repeat the D7000 D3/D3S mistake. It seems like it should be able to shoot faster (D800 does 4.5 fps in RAW), and they could have put the upgraded AF system in for not that much more. They have made some smart decisions this time around to keep overlap at a minimum.

    The D600 seems like a great camera, and the improved low light performance would be nice, but for me it will not replace the D700 without being able to get to 8fps for sports. I use the D800E for landscape work, but the D600 should be quite strong here too.

  21. 21) noushervan
    September 19, 2012 at 10:08 pm

    Happy shooting Nasim.. Eagerly waiting for your unbiased review.

  22. 22) Debadatta Maharana (Rana)
    September 19, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    Dear Nasim,
    Pl include the actual buffer size in your upcoming review. That would help in deciding for an upgrade.
    Thanks .
    Regd Rana

  23. 23) Adnan Khan
    September 20, 2012 at 12:14 am

    At least this time it’s on time :) …and no Greta to grab it :))
    can’t wait to see your pics after the “spin” :)


  24. 24) Dr.S Mandal
    September 20, 2012 at 12:43 am




  25. 25) Mike
    September 20, 2012 at 1:22 am


    All the reports I am reading seem to back up the fact that the D600 is a great camera for people like me who want to step up to an FX camera, your early observations seem to be agreeing with this and I am really looking forward to your report, go forth and enjoy. Special request, HDR, how many images can be used, compared to the two image overlay on the D300S.


  26. 26) Anirban
    September 20, 2012 at 3:36 am


    Really look forward to your detailed review. I have a question which you may wish to answer in your review. The D7000 (I read) and my basic D3100 (I tested) tend to overexpose in high contrast scenes even in some of the non manual modes. I’d like to know if this is the case with D600 as well. Does high dynamic range has to do something with this?

    While Nasim is getting his in-depth review sorted, you guys can have a look at a review posted by a user in dp review with ISO range compared with the D600, D7000 and the D700.

    I have a technical question for Nasim and others who knows this subject more in and out.
    I can see in the link on ISO comparisons, the dynamic range (the punchy look) is high with D7000 and D600 compared to the D700. Did you user use a flash for the D600 and D700 and not on the D700? Or is that what high Dynamic range is on D600 and D7000 compared to the D700?

    But, I also noticed one issue on the D600 and D7000 shots. The highlights on certain portions are more blown out than the D700. Look at the white areas like the beak, eyes, cuff on right hand, the belly of the lizard/croc. In the D700 shots they look pleasing, but the ones on D600 and D7000 looks blown out.

    Is that something a user need to be careful about while shooting with a high DR camera? I use a D3100 and it ocassionaly clips the white similar to the way I see on the D600 and D7000 shots. Not sure if this makes any sense, but I just want to understand if there is a trade off in having a high DR and what to do to ensure highlights are not blown.

    I am not a pro, so please don’t shoot me if my question is crap.

    • 26.1) Mike
      September 20, 2012 at 4:05 am

      Thanks for the link Anirban, will make good lunch time reading


  27. 27) Tripp
    September 20, 2012 at 3:51 am

    I’m interested to hear how it feels in your hand, especially the grip. I have a D7000, and coming from a D200, I don’t like how it feels in my hand compared to the pro line of cameras. The D7000 is too small in my hand and shooting with it for extended periods is uncomfortable. Picking up a D800 felt GREAT with the rubber and big grip. By the looks of the pictures the D600 looks kind of in between, so I’m curious to hear.

  28. 28) Mark
    September 20, 2012 at 4:30 am

    Hi Nasim

    About the limitation of 1/4000 sec. of which you said its not so important:
    When fotographing moving water like the sea, a river, fountains (like in Las Vegas) or waterfalls… will 1/4000 be enough or would 1/8000 be better?

    • 28.1) Pedro
      September 25, 2012 at 7:44 pm

      Thanks for a great website.Im thinking of buying the D600 in the near future but am worried about one aspect of the camera.Looking through some of the shots i,ve taken over the past year,i have noticed a fair few going above the maximum 1/4000 sec of the nikons capabilities.These were standard urban scenes taken on a sunny day using aperture priority,my most used mode.Is this something to worry about ? I really dont want to compromise by having to shift to a smaller setting.Also these were taken at 100 iso,the lowest i could go to.Would it be wise just to go for the D800 in this respect ?

    • October 6, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      Mark, you never photograph waterfalls with fast shutter speed – it is the opposite, you go slower, which creates that “smooth” waterfall effect :)

  29. 29) Mohamed
    September 20, 2012 at 4:55 am

    What a great job you are doing for us Nasim and rest of the team , much appreciated, we are WAITING IMPATIENTLY for the full review :)
    I’m very glad to know from your introductory notes it sounds like it is a very promising camera.
    My three limiting factors to buy D600 are:
    1- the AF system ,i do not mean those issues in original Nikon D800/D800E shipments, i love to your real life analysis on how efficient it is ( speed and accuracy) , especially in low light compared to d7000 and d800 and wither it worth upgrading from d7000 in this particular feature ?
    2- ISO performance compared to D700 and D800
    3- how unforgiving is it to shaking when using it handheld compared to d800 ( that was intimidating me from getting D800, i can not shoot using tripod all the time and a lens like 300mm f4 even does not have VR , what i understood using d800 with such a lens for example without tripod for bird in fly is challenging with disappointing result most of time )
    if not as my expectation i will go for d800.

    thanks in advance Nasim

  30. 30) UA
    September 20, 2012 at 5:07 am

    – and + inverted? If this means the exposure meter, then why??

    What I always loved about Nikon is that you see the meter showing too dark, roll exposure or f-stop dial to direction of the exposure meter’s center and you will correct the situation. Same of course for too bright. I have always hated Canon due to this, since there is no relation between the meter and the dials (and the back dial is even vertical, so there cannot be any relation).

    You may change this from setup, but why do they come in the canon way as standard now?!? Of course for those auto/program/aperture/shutter mode shooters this is not that big deal, but I use manul pretty much all the time and have loved that relation between meter and dials/rolls for ages.

    • 30.1) UA
      September 20, 2012 at 8:49 am

      I checked the manual and this is true! What a stupid thing to change that has been so in Nikons for ages. And the logic I presented made it even better way than the now adopted Canon way.

      Blargh.. well, at least you can flip them from the setup

    • 30.2) Bill Stadelman
      September 20, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      What has always bothered me about the way Nikon did it is that it goes against what we all learned in school. If you go to any math class that deals with numbers, and they draw a number line, the negative numbers go off to the left, and the positive numbers go off to the right. This is pretty standard, and it always bothered me hat Nikon went against it. I was ecstatic when I found that my new 7000 allowed me to change it where it made sense again.

    • 30.3) Bill Stadelman
      September 20, 2012 at 1:27 pm

      What has always bothered me about the way Nikon did it is that it goes against what we all learned in school. If you go to any math class that deals with numbers, and they draw a number line, the negative numbers go off to the left, and the positive numbers go off to the right. This is pretty standard, and it always bothered me that Nikon went against it. I was ecstatic when I found that my new 7000 allowed me to change it where it made sense again.

      • 30.3.1) UA
        September 21, 2012 at 1:13 am

        That’s true, but i have tought this in a manner that we have a reference scale, which is in school format and the meter shows the delta (difference) to that reference scale. I’ll try to illustrate this with ASCII here (not a big deal, but I’m bored at my day job atm. (I’m EU resident, if you wonder the time :))), hopefully it will show corectly after posting :).

        Reference scale:
        -1 EV 0 +1EV
        – – – – | – – – – | – – – – | – – – –

        1 EV too dark (according to meter):
        – – – – | : : : : – – – –

        1 EV too bright:
        – – – – – : : : : | – – – – – – – – – –

        So the meter shows that you are this far from the reference exposure: fix the difference / match the scales and you got perfect exposure. And the dials work great with this idea too. I’m pretty sure Nikon thought this earlier in this fashion, but maybe there are too many Canon people changing to Nikon now, since the sensors are far superior, and they had to make Canon way as standard ;).

        • UA
          September 21, 2012 at 1:18 am

          Well, the ASCII did not work as it ought to, but you can get the idea, if you set the -1EV, 0, +1EV just above the | markers and move bright scale one | marker to the right (sorry for spamming)).

          However, as an enigneer this old Nikon way makes perfect sense ;D

  31. 31) avishai
    September 20, 2012 at 6:03 am

    Hay Nasim, as you are a Nikon guy a would really like you to read this post i wrote on my blog yesterday…

    what do you think about the ideas and suggestions i give there? thanks!

    And i am really waiting for the D600 review!

    • 31.1) Stefan
      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 am

      “15-55mm f3.5-5.6G AF-S VR Kit Lens”

      There is no such lens!

      • 31.1.1) avishai
        September 20, 2012 at 8:39 am

        You are right, i messed that one up i meant the 18-55mm… thanks!

  32. 32) Anirban
    September 20, 2012 at 6:33 am


    Not sure how many of you noticed in the above user review I posted earlier there is one feature that makes the D600 score over the D800 and it shares this feature only with the D4 in the whole Nikon family.

    It is the ability to choose if Exposure compensation works as global for both camera or flash or only for camera. This is a great feature the Canon cameras has where cam exp comp and flash exp com are separate…but not any more since the D600 has this and you can toggle it to make it directly associated as with any Nikon or make it work independently like Canon.

    Nasim, I’d like to know if this can be used to address the 1/4000 limit of shutter speed on the D600. Does it mean that in bright sunlight, the camera can be underexposed by 1 stop to darken the ambient and the flash can light up with its normal exp compensation?

    Not a techie, but just wondering if it can be achieved this way.

    • 32.1) UA
      September 20, 2012 at 7:13 am

      Erm.. I did not quite get what you mean by that “global exposure compensation”, since I do not use exp comp, but D40, D90 and D700 at least let you compensate flash only. This happens by using iTTL flash and holding the built in flash button and rolling a dial. AFAIK, the exposure compensation does affect on the flash as well, IF you are using it in iTTL mode. But you have always been able to compensate this with the flash compensation. So if I got this correctly, Nikon now lets you separate the flash compensation out of the exp compensation if you want to (so you do not need to compensate flash separately as earlier, if you want to do some tricks)? Eh, quite complicated it is :D

      • 32.1.1) Terje H.
        September 20, 2012 at 7:24 am

        You’re able to use flash exposure compensation separate from the camera’s exposure compensation on most Nikon bodys separately (sown to D3100 at least).
        However, it is indeed so that if you dial (for instance) -1 camera exposure compensation (in PAS modes), the flash exposure compensation will automatically be set to -1.

        Personally, I tend to use full manual whenever I use flash, precisely to avoid thinking about this (setting any flash exposure compensation manually, if needed), so for me this is a welcome addition (with the caveat that it is actually added as an option).

      • 32.1.2) Anirban
        September 20, 2012 at 7:26 am

        I meant to say that in Nikon iTTL exposure compensation on Camera affects flash compensation as well irrespective of what the flash exp com is set to. So, a negative/positive compensation on camera would affect the flash power.

        In Canon system, the flash will output light as per the flash comp(0, – or +) and cam exp com will affect only ambient and not the flash power.

        It appears that in D600 and D4, the camera can bet set to either settings – flash exp comp linked to cam exp com or independent…..- if true, this will be handy depending on what it is used for.

        Someone please correct me if I am talking rubbish. I just want to learn and understand if this is something useful.

      • 32.1.3) UA
        September 20, 2012 at 8:26 am

        Ah, now this makes sense, thx! I should propably try that on my D700.. dunno, do not use PAS modes anyway :D.

    • 32.2) Terje H.
      September 20, 2012 at 7:14 am

      I fail to see how that would matter.
      At 1/4000 shutter speed, your flash/speedlight is rendered useless by shutter sync speed limitations anyway.

      The info is nonetheless interesting (to me at least), as the Nikon way of equaling the camera’s exposure compensation in the flash exposure compensation has always annoyed me.

      • 32.2.1) Anirban
        September 20, 2012 at 7:19 am

        Sorry, I messed up the second part of my post and on reading it again it does look like confusing. What I meant is does it help with HSS and not really normal flash beyond 1/200 sync speed.

        • Terje H.
          September 20, 2012 at 7:53 am

          The D600 does support auto FP high-speed sync (Nikon lingo for what many call HSS), but it comes with the cost of a substantial drop in flash output and range (it is essentially no longer flash, but continuous light), reducing its usefulness somewhat.

          This link may shed some light on auto FP, it’s uses and limitations

          Of course, if you’re interested in flash photography with Nikon bodies in general, I find this website extremely useful.

  33. 33) Andy House
    September 20, 2012 at 7:58 am

    I’m having a tough time deciding between the D600 and the D800. I kind of want to know whether the 600 is a better buy versus the 800. I know that’s an incredibly broad question, sorry. I’m getting into wedding photography and I currently shoot with my D7000 and a few f/2.8 lenses. I feel like i’ve hit a “image quality wall” with my D7000 and I need a full frame camera. Some of my friends and people I work weddings with shoot with full frames and I can definitely see the difference. If i were to get the 600, would I be able to produce images on par with the 800? One of the big things about the 800 that I don’t like is the 36mp image size. Those RAW files are going to be HUGE. I just think it’s unnecessary. I may be wrong here, since I sure as heck don’t know everything about photography. Anyway, I guess my question is would I be ok buying the 600 instead of the 800 for my wedding photography? By the way, your site/blog is one of my favorites. I check it just about every day. Thanks!

    • 33.1) Jorge Balarin
      September 20, 2012 at 11:42 am

      You are going to jump from 16 megapixels up to 24 megapixels in a big sensor, with better low light ability. The quality of your photos will be very much better than in the past. For weddings a D600 must be more than enough.

  34. 34) PG
    September 20, 2012 at 8:10 am

    Is it possible to see how the Nikon D600 perfoms with the nikon 24-120mm at several ISO’s and diferent apertures?

    Best regards

  35. 35) JR
    September 20, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Hi Nasim,

    I too will be heading to the San Juan range next weekend; hopefully the fall colors will be near, or at their peak. I hope to have my D600 by then(per B&H, the body shipped yesterday morning and I’m leaving next Thursday…..I may be cutting it close :-/ ).

    I will be testing the D600 with a 24mm F2.8D, a 50mm F1.4D and an 80-200mm F2.8. No messing around with any distortion-heavy lenses, or any other factors; that’s all I’m taking and should cover my most used range. Those lenses should serve as a good benchmark for this new sensor.

    BTW, I ordered the MB-D14 from Adorama but so far nothing’s moving on that unit. Any news when the grip will start shipping? I can’t go very long without a grip; specially on the D7000-like body of D600.

    Enjoy your trip to the SJ range. I can’t wait to see your images! I’ll post mine as soon as they’re available.


  36. 36) Eduardo B.
    September 20, 2012 at 9:04 am

    Hello Nasim,

    I would like to know how is the AF accuracy in low light compare to he D700 and the D800.


  37. 37) Art
    September 20, 2012 at 9:28 am

    Thank you for taking the time to share your initial impressions about the D600. So far it looks like this camera is going to be the perfect companion for my primes when I want to travel light. Just as the D800 has now put my D3X into semi-retirement; I think that this camera is going to do the same for my D700. Looking forward to your full review to see how it performs in the field.

  38. 38) Jayw
    September 20, 2012 at 9:46 am

    D600 lens: does 50mm 1.8G and 24-120mm f/4 seem to be good starting point?

    • 38.1) T
      September 20, 2012 at 9:53 am

      I guess so if you want to stick with a single zoom and somewhat fast price. I also have around the same lens budget $1500 and going with this combo instead:

      Tamron 28-75 2.8 (non-motor version) $225 used
      Nikon 50 1.8G $220
      Nikon 85 1.8G $400 used
      Nikon 180 2.8 $500 used

      • 38.1.1) Jayw
        September 20, 2012 at 10:02 am

        I have zero lens now. I want to start with a couple of lenses that I can get very good photo quality but not too heavy or too expensive. In the future, I can add 85 1.8G and 16-35 f/4 for wide angle.

  39. 39) arbee
    September 20, 2012 at 9:53 am
  40. 40) mohamed
    September 20, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Dear Nasim
    What a great job you are doing for us Nasim and rest of the team , much appreciated, we are WAITING IMPATIENTLY for the full review :)
    I’m very glad to know from your introductory notes it sounds like a very promising camera.
    My three limiting factors to buy D600 are:
    1- the AF system ,i do not mean those issues in original Nikon D800/D800E shipments, i love to see your real life analysis on how efficient is it ( speed and accuracy) , especially in low light compared to d7000 and d800 and wither it worth upgrading from d7000 in this particular feature ? d600 Autofocus sensitivity is down to -1EV (compared to -2EV for d800 ) what does this mean exactly and how far this difference affect AF performance , i read that Canon 6D has auto sensitivity down to -3EV
    2- ISO performance compared to D700 and D800
    3- how unforgiving is it for shaking when using it handheld compared to d800 ( that was intimidating me from getting D800, i can not shoot using tripod all the time and a lens like 300mm f4 even does not have VR, what i understood using d800 with such a lens for example without tripod for bird in fly is challenging and with disappointing result most of time )
    those are things determine which way i go… D600 or D800.

    thank a again Nasim for your kindness patience :)

  41. 41) Jay
    September 20, 2012 at 9:58 am

    Let me know how the San Juan trip goes. I’ve scheduled a flight into Durango on Sept. 28th. I may cancel if I am too late for the Aspen trees! Looks like they are peaking about a week early? Let us know.

  42. 42) Maegan
    September 20, 2012 at 10:53 am

    I, too am curious about the low light capabilities. It’s not too late for me to return my D4 order. I only bought the D4 because of the low light abilities indoors & high ISO looks good. Thoughts??? I could honestly save $4,000.

  43. 43) Alejandro
    September 20, 2012 at 11:13 am

    Waiting you come back from your jouney and ready ro buy either d600 or d800, i think that if the quality and iso capabilities are the same or even better than the d800 will buy d600 next week, always wanted more pixels , but 36 mb are way too much for me..

    Your website have been one of the most serius places around… Please keep doing this

  44. September 20, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    Could you make a test shooting the D600 with a lens like DX 18-200 on it? I´d really like to know in what zoom ranges we start to notice the vigneting. I own only DX lenses and that would be the only reason stoping me from buyind the D600…

    • September 20, 2012 at 2:00 pm

      Robson, don’t use DX lenses on FX cameras – the resolution by default will be less than half. If you choose to shoot the entire frame, the area outside of DX will all be black. I did use the 18-200mm on it and it is not pretty…

  45. 45) TJ_V
    September 20, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    And thank you for this website and the upcoming review of the D600.

    I am deciding between the D600 and D800 and while I am more interested in the D800, I am somewhat worried about its apparent long exposure noise performance. I have read from several sources that it is prone to serious hot pixels when the LE NR is disabled. I have not had a chance to test this myself, so I am referring to information that I have read online on the subject.

    I am wondering whether perhaps the D600 could be a better performer in this particular regard. If yes, that could be a reason for me to choose it over the D800.

    If you could in your upcoming D600 review please look into its LE noise / hot pixels performance – particularly with the LE NR disabled – I would be very grateful.

    Many thanks!

  46. 46) Graham
    September 20, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    The 70-200 VR2 is a remarkable lens (Kim) with fantastic sharpness and colour depth that makes every shot a joy. A huge step up from the fixed f4 lens at least, and doubtless from the 80-200 versions, by all accounts. I checked mine at length though with Nikon, having read that “it renders the same color as my other Nikon lenses”. Well, it doesn’t, and is not supposed to. Nikon confirms that it is designed for accurate colour, not ‘consumer’ warmth (as with the 70-300); mine also exposes quite accurately on a D700, whereas the 50mm f1.4, 70-300 etc. (but not the 60 Micro) require a setting of maybe 2/3 stop Minus-exposure. You’ll not regret buying this lens, though it Is heavy and tires the wrist. And quite the match, one must think, for the D800 or 600.

  47. 47) D600 User
    September 20, 2012 at 4:20 pm


    My D600 came in from Amazon about 2 hrs ago. I ran it through the battery of auto-focus tests you recommended using an FX 50mm f/1.8 Nikkor lens. I’m not really seeing any autofocus problems between live-view and manual. I get sharp images no matter which method I use, and for both left, center and right of frame. I have shots if anyone’s interested, but there’s no way to load them here. I was worried I’d see another D800 debacle, but this D600 unit looks to be fine to me. One kink is that I had to use jpeg files because lightroom doesn’t recognize D600 NEF files yet.

    • 47.1) D600 User
      September 20, 2012 at 4:21 pm

      Sorry – I meant to say manual (live view) and auto-focus methods :-)

  48. 48) Focus
    September 21, 2012 at 3:33 am

    Thank you Nasim!
    My loyal D40x served me extremely well in the past years and i think
    i’ve been able to learn quite a lot with and from her.
    I’m gonna get a d600 shortly, will be quite an upgrade for me but
    i’m planning to have a very long and happy relation with her…
    I only have one question abt the d600.
    It seems that all the 39 focusing point result being particularly “concentrated” in the
    very central part of the frame leaving a lot of uncovered space all around.
    I’m used to the 3(…) focusing points of my d40x so focus and recompose is not
    an issue for me but i’m wondering how annoying this could be when shooting
    moving subjects that are not gonna be in the center of the frame all the time..
    Apologize for my poor english, hope i managed to made myself clear enough.

  49. 49) William Jones
    September 21, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Have some test shots with my D600 posted, and I believe I have a bad case of back-focus. Here is a link to the gallery where I have posted these shots:


    This gallery is hidden, and can only be accessed via the above link.

    These were all shot today, with an 80-200 f/2.8 lens. Settings: 1/2000th; f/3.2; Auto ISO; AF fine tune of negative seven (which appear to me NOT to be enough). Shot in 14-bit NEF, and converted to JPG with ViewNX2 (all default settings). Focus settings were AF-C 3D. The dog was stationary at the time (not to mention the tree, also).

    I have created a second set of these JPGS (not yet posted), to which I added a box with the approx location of the focus point. Let me know if you need these to confirm my guess that the camera is back-focusing. I also shot (but have not posted) some with the 24mm f/1.4, and the focus on those also seems to be bad.

    Thanks, WEJ

    • 49.1) William Jones
      September 21, 2012 at 11:51 am

      I added a second set of shots (they are named 600, then AF followed by a “-” or “+” sign and two digits). The value after the 600 part of the name is the amount of AF Fine Tune used for that shot. It appears to me that the best two of these shots have a value of -15 and -20. All other settings were the same as before, except I used AF-S with single point focus.

      Since the back-focus seems to be so bad, would anyone advise returning for another unit, or just adjust AF Fine tune for all my lenses?

      Thanks, WEJ

      • 49.1.1) William Jones
        September 22, 2012 at 9:46 pm

        Have decided to return the D600 to Best Buy (due to focus issues). For those who might ask, the serial # was: 3005415. Tried additional lenses, and the AF Fine Tune value required was all over the board. Since none of those lenses required any adjustments on my D3X or D3S, it has to be the D600, and not the lenses.

        I will get another unit and try again. The above pictures I will leave posted until the end of Sept, 2012.

        • JR
          September 25, 2012 at 10:15 am

          Wow, William, sorry to hear that. I’m expecting my D600 to arrive at my doorstep any moment. The first lens I will try will be my 50mm f1.4D and and the next will be my 80-200mm F2.8ED. You and I should be making comparable tests. I will post what I find, although I don’t know how much time I will have to do so today. Keep tuned…

          • William Jones
            September 25, 2012 at 12:05 pm

            Have exchanged 1st D600 for 2nd one. The 2nd one has a little back focus, about negative 10 setting for all lenses, so am keeping for the moment. Will try it on polo this afternoon, with my 80-400 lens. Due to other issues with focus speed in AF-C focus mode, while in CH release mode (Focus Priority set to focus NOT release), am not certain that I will keep the D600. The battery for the D600 has only 7 volts, while for my D3X (and D3S) the battery has 11.1 volts; a drop of 37% in power. May not be enough Wheaties to move big/heavy glass fast enough for action shots. AF-S lenses may be faster in focus speed (especially large zooms, life the 70-200, 28-300, 200-400, etc). I would like some other people to test their large zoom lenses on the D600, AF-C, singe point focus, CH release mode, Focus Priority on Focus, continuous bursts till buffer fills (with high speed cards, so can get 15 or more shots), with subjects moving towards or away from the camera, and advise of their results. Keep shutter speed at either 1/1,600 or 1/2,000 and f/5.6 (or lower). Remember, one push of the button till buffer fills. Let me know your hit ratio. If any questions on settings, contact me at:

            I shot one highschool football game (Sept 21st) with my 1st D600 and a 80-200 lens (pictures posted to my website). Had the AF Fine Tune set to negative 16 for that shoot. Pictures processed 1st thru ViewNX2 (14-bit NEF to JPG), then final processing of JPGs thru DxO. Would be better quality if did all in DxO, however they can not yet process D600 NEF files. Some decent shots, however hit ratio was low. I am sure the rain did not help, either.

  50. 50) Sahajpal Rai
    September 21, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Wow! only one word I can say about D600. I have D800E but I think just my thought that AF system on D600 is way better then D800E and sharpness for me is same as D800 except D800 have more Mega Pixel. I love this camera for things like Portrait, Wedding, Street walk and Action sports ( I know it has 1/4000) but still good for sports. This camera is not for Landscape reason behind is few of them. Fist Live view doesn’t have HISTOGRAM, second — Playback you can’t dedicate any button for zoom in 100%. Third — Bracketing is not possible more then 3 shots and you only can do +- Norm meter > Under > over and if you like to do bracketing for +2 +1 and normal it’s not possible only you can do +1 and Normal. For me this is great camera because I was thinking to buy D800 for Portrait and wedding but don’t like to have large file share. This perfect for long day shooting light and easy to handle. Skin tones are way batter. Hope this will help you to decide what do you want to do with this camera.

    • 50.1) JR
      September 25, 2012 at 10:42 am

      Sorry, Sahajpal, with all due respect, but I can’t believe that the D600 Is “not for Landscape”.

      What do you mean that “Playback you can’t dedicate any button for zoom in 100%”? Mean to tell me that you cannot use the “+” button to drill down to 100% of the image in your screen?! That’s difficult, if not impossible, to believe(I will verify this in a couple hours when my D600 arrives).

      Then, you say that “Bracketing is not possible more then 3 shots and you only can do +-“. How about doing the bracketing yourself? If you need 12 images for your HDR concoction, then bracket them yourself using manual exposure. Meter once on the scene, then bracket up and down as many times as you want; using your manual exposure dial. I think that the D600 has a manual exposure dial, right? ;-)

      In my experience, three bracketed exposures for landscape work is sufficient. If I need more than three exposures, I’m probably trying to shoot in the middle of the day, when the sun casts impossible shadows that create a huge dynamic range spread. In such cases, you should probably be using a solid neutral density filter, in order to stop down the aperture. Then, after applying a solid ND filter, three bracketed exposures would be sufficient.

      For someone to say that this camera is not good for landscape work, when guys like David Meunch have been making iconic landscape images for decades using large format film cameras without the ability to bracket multiple shots, is difficult on the ears. Hurts to hear.

      • 50.1.1) Sahajpal Rai
        September 25, 2012 at 11:18 am

        JR — let me explain that I don’t shoot bracketed images like you do example ‘- normal and then +’ I expose for shadows then I use the 99% -1 -2 shots so for me it’s not possible to do that using this camera. If you can do that please let me know because I have tried I can’t . One more thing that you mentioned about David Meunch using large format camera, just as my experience large format cameras have dynamic range +- 11 to 13 stops because the sensor is large and for light to fill the sensor is easy. I am not saying this camera is bad at all what I am saying is this is mostly good for Portraits, parties, wedding ect where you don’t have to bracket. One more thing I know you can use remote to trigger the camera but just let you know it doesn’t have 10 pin connector either and remote thing I never use so I can’t speak about it. Hope I mentioned everything but JUST FOR ME it’s not for landscape camera.

        • JR
          September 25, 2012 at 2:33 pm


          As for your bracketing “for shadows then I use the 99% -1 -2 shots”, I don’t think you will need to worry too much with the D600. The days of “exposing for shadows” may be coming to an end.

          The D600 has a higher “Landscape Dynamic Range”, 14.2 EVs, than the 60 megapixel Phase One P65+, 13 EVs. And we know that the P65+ Phase One has been used by top professional landscape phtographers to create amazing images :

          The extremely high dynamic range of the D600, second only to the D800, will make a FANTASTIC landscape tool, perhaps negating the need for so much “bracketing” to nail the exposure, and instead allowing the photographer to concentrate on composition. What a concept!

          See for yourself

      • 50.1.2) Sahajpal Rai
        September 25, 2012 at 11:23 am

        JR — One more thing as you said manual exposure — When you are shooting landscape shot with clouds then you don’t want to adjust manually because this way your clouds will move a lot and you will not have correct HDR. Manually adjusting instead of bracketing doesn’t work for me. By the way I only know manually using my camera. I only used A or S once in past 5 yrs.

        • JR
          September 25, 2012 at 12:50 pm


          Bracketing manually has its drawbacks, as you’ve noted, with moving clouds, foliage, etc. But, so does auto bracketing! A LOT of the images that I’ve auto-bracketed have shown movements in the clouds, leaves, grass, flowers, etc. And this happened when only bracketing THREE images! Imagine having to auto-bracket FIVE or NINE! I wouldn’t even try it.

          There’s always a lag, even with auto-bracketing. If you’re an HDR shooter, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. The more images you’re bracketing, the LONGER the time span between your first frame and your last. Sometimes in the order of SECONDS! And within a few seconds, a LOT of stuff can move in the landscape, as you well know.

          Now, for architecture, without objects that can move, then yes, you can bracket an infinite number of frames. But, for landscape, IMO, anyone shooting more than three frames is asking for trouble(unless they only shoot rocks, that don’t move). Why I feel comfortable with three frames being more than sufficient for *MY* landscape work and why I find it difficult to read your initial assertion about the D600 not being useful for landscape work.

          As for David Meunch, I have been following his work since the mid 1980s and I don’t recall him ever using digital large format backs. It was always film backs with Linhof Tech field cameras. I could be wrong; if so, please correct me, but here’s what he has to say on his own website:

          “I’ve put away—temporarily—my Linhof Technika (4×5), Leicaflex (35mm) and Canon (35 mm) film cameras and, since 2007, have made the leap to a slow learning curve with digital photography.” -David Muench

          Hence, we can assume that the vast majority of his classic images were shot with film.

          Yes, large format film does have a higher dynamic range and a LOT of detail can be captured inside and outside of the shadow space. No doubt about that. HOWEVER, David was not doing much “bracketing and stacking”, if at all. The new-fangled way of shooting HDR with software tools was not yet developed when Muench was shooting with this field camera. He used filters, careful composition and burning and dodging in the dark room to get the image “just right”.

          Here’s an example of an image that was created by David, which, for my taste, surpasses the new HDR techniques:

          That shot is much more natural and doesn’t tell the eyes that it’s a manipulated image. It jumps out as a NATURAL scene. Now, I am not against dramatic HDR landscapes, but prefer the old-school way of using filters. The foreground in that image is darker than the background, which is very natural to the eyes. That’s probably what David saw when he shot that image. If both were at the same exposure level, then the image would look weird; unless there was even cloud cover to even out the exposure.

          I’m moving away from any HDR techniques/processing and using only filters(specially solid neutral density in combination with graduated neutral density filters). It gets me closer to that classic landscape look that I prefer.

          Here’s a nice article by Peter Hill on the use of neutral density filters, and although I don’t go as far as he does, I do use them in my work:

          What bothers me about the HDR craze is that many shooters are sacrificing sharpness and depth of field, in favor the HDR “look”. They don’t mind shooting 12 frames, at the expense of sharpness(due to moving subjects), as long as they get THE HDR LOOK.

          To each their own, I suppose. But, for me, give me the classic images of Muench and Rowell, any day!

          • Jorge Balarin
            September 25, 2012 at 2:15 pm

            Hi JR,

            I’m new to filters. I bought a Zeiss polarizer and I did some shots in the Namibian savanna. I couldn’t wait for friendly conditions because most of the time I was over a jeep with impatient hunters that were shooting for real. So I did a lot of midday pics, with a super strong sun over my head. Some of the pics that I did are very nice. They show a beautiful blue sky with highlighted clouds; but in some others, specially in the ones without many clouds, you could see some annoying curvy dark lines across the sky. I don’t know if I’m going to see those lines if I print the photos. Do you have a clue ? Happened that to you using a polarizer ? Greetings, Jorge.

            • JR
              September 25, 2012 at 2:47 pm

              “most of the time I was over a jeep with impatient hunters that were shooting for real”

              LOL!!!! Sounds like you had a blast!

              Jorge, I’ve had a number of bad experiences with filters. Don’t know what Zeiss filter you had, but it’s really important to have a high quality polarizer. If not, you will get EXACTLY what you described. Some images will be great and others, terrible. There’s no way around it, even with high quality glass you will get some strange artifacts at times.

              But, what other recourse is there, when you’re shooting at mid day, from a moving jeep!! A solid neutral density filter could help, but it won’t give you that nice sky effect that polarizers do. On the other hand, a solid ND filter will avoid the ugly, dark lines in the sky. It’s a compromise. You can always burn the sky later on in photoshop, to get that polarized look. At least with a solid ND you will have more even distribution of light on your sensor.

              Here’s one I’ve used and it works pretty well.

              btw, you will probably see those lines when you print the photos:-(

            • Jorge Balarin
              September 25, 2012 at 3:09 pm

              Thank you very much for your answer JR, the Zeiss I bought was brand new. I thing I will buy a Hoya, one super thin polarizer covered with an anti-print layer, that I saw in a store and cost 30 euros more than the Zeiss (I paid 100 euros for the later). Greetings, Jorge.

  51. 51) Eliot Nierman
    September 21, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    Would like to clarify some D600 features if someone who has one can help:

    1. Bracketing-is it indeed limited to 3 shots-1 below, 1 normal and 1 above. If so is the amount of the bracket only 1 F stop (-1. normal, +1) or can if be 2?
    2. Since there is no dedicated Autofocus button can the AE lock button be programmed for autofocus and focus removed from the shutter button in custom settings?
    3. Auto iso- is it the sophisticated version that adjusts speed based on the mm of the lens or the older version where there is no automatic adjustment?
    4. Are grid lines and a horizon (level) available in the view finder?



  52. 52) TimR
    September 21, 2012 at 10:03 pm

    1. I think it can be 2 dl the Nikon D600 manual ( and type in page 153

    2, The D600 lacks the separate AE-L/AF-L and AF-ON buttons that you’ll find on the back of the D800, but if you miss AF-ON that much, you can always re-assign AE-L/AF-L to fulfill the same function (remembering of course that it is possible to save two entirely distinct sets of shooting parameters, including custom settings, to the ‘U1’ and ‘U2’ custom modes).

    3. ?

    4, Yes there are grid lines and a Horizon level in the viewfinder

  53. 53) Eliot Nierman
    September 21, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    Thanks Tim. I checked the manual which gave the answers:

    1. Bracketing is 3 shots maximum but increments can range from 1/3 to 3 and are not limited to 1 stop as someone thought above

    2. The AE lock button can be re-assigned as an AF-on that works the same as AF-on for cameras that have that button.

    3. Auto ISO is smart. Minimum shutter speed is chosen based on focal length of lens

    4. Grid lines and horizon level are present.

  54. 54) Anson R
    September 22, 2012 at 2:02 am

    GREAT CAMERA! The D600 has a GREAT sensor. Better than the D700 and better than the 5Dmk3. I think the Nikon D600 and the Nikon D800 established a new QUALITY-IMAGES STANDARD-LEVEL. By D800 on, NOTHING WILL BE AS BEFORE.

  55. 55) Sahajpal Rai
    September 22, 2012 at 8:53 am

    All, Here are the pics I took yesterday using D600 as I said earlier it’s super camera for every thing shooting except Nature, landscape. Following is the link and you can judge how clean the pictures are from this camera.

    • 55.1) JR
      September 25, 2012 at 11:19 am

      Sahajpal, ONCE AGAIN you say that the D600 is a good camera for “every thing shooting except Nature, landscape”.

      That is preposterous. Completely and utterly wrong.

      I apologize if you think I’m coming after you, but that’s not my intention. I just can’t believe how someone would say such a thing. There are many people on this forum trying to learn about the D600 in order to make an informed decision as to whether they should buy it, or not. Some are relatively new to photography. To emphatically state that the camera is good for “everything but nature and landscape” is doing these folks a great disservice by making, and repeating, misleading statements.

      Not only is the D600 an adequate, if not great, camera for landscape work when looking at its specs on paper, it should prove to be an adequate, if not great, camera for landscape work when folks begin to use it in the real world. We should have an endless stream of magnificent landscape images coming in from all over the globe, that were taken with a Nikon D600.

      The Canon 5D Mark 2, a 21 MP camera, and arguably the most popular landscape DSLR of the past 3-4 yrs, and one that has been used by top landscape photographers, only allows THREE bracketed shots, just like the D600. And who would safely argue that the 5DMII is not an adequate landscape camera, when there are countless images hanging on gallery walls all over the world that were shot with this machine?

      Folks, don’t take everything you read about the D600, or any other camera, as gospel. Let the results, ie. images, speak for themselves. Nasim should be posting some landscape shots from his trip to Colorado’s San Juan range. Let those images be your guide.

      • 55.1.1) Sahajpal Rai
        September 25, 2012 at 11:33 am

        I don’t mind what you are saying but AS FOR ME , it is not for landscape because I doesn’t have the features that will take quick and fast landscape pictures. I feel like you work for Nikon well I think you know what am I talking about . 5dM2 had live view with histogram and you can Zoom in and meter the blown out parts but you don’t have same capability in D600 NO HISTOGRAM in live view. I think I have said earlier why but my nature I don’t argue so what ever you say is right. I do what I have to do, reason I posted the comment because rest of the world is also writing their opinion so did I so if you are agreed with me then forgive me , it is my opinion.

        • JR
          September 25, 2012 at 12:00 pm

          Ah, see, Sahajpal! This is EXACTLY what I thought…..”take quick and fast landscape pictures”! Which is VERY different than they way a lot of landscape photographers work. I may take up to 20 minutes to compose and shoot ONE picture, whereby others may shoot 20 “landscape” images in the same time span.

          That’s VERY DIFFERENT than saying that the camera is good for “everything BUT nature or landscapes”. A very clear and defined explanation needs to be given in order to not misguide others. This camera may not work for *YOU*, and *YOUR* workflow, but I can *GUARANTEE* that it will work for MANY, MANY landscape photographers. It’s just a matter of time before we see the amazing results.

          OK, the D600 doesn’t have a “live” histogram. Does it have a historam available AFTER the shot is taken? Of course! So one cannot say that it cannot be used for landscape, because it can. It just cannot be used the way that YOU want to use it.

          For DECADES master landscape photographers did not have live histograms, and many relied on spot metering to get their shot right. So it is completely possible to shoot AMAZING, AWARD-WINNING, images that could sell for thousands of dollars…..without a live histogram!

          Maybe I’m too old and remember the days when we had to WORK for our pictures and not let the camera do the thinking for us;-)

        • Jorge Balarin
          September 25, 2012 at 1:30 pm

          Hi Sahajpal,

          I would like to know if it is possible to use the “live view” in the D700, in the same way it can be used in the 5D Mark II. I don’t know how to use the histogram, could you explain me how to use it while shooting landscapes. Greetings, Jorge.

          • JR
            September 25, 2012 at 2:04 pm

            Hi Jorge,

            Here’s a popular review of the D700:

            “So what’s not to like? Well it’s a shame there’s still no Live Histogram in Live View”

            Hence, it should be surmised that the D700 has been useless for landscape work and useful only for shooting parties, weddings, sports and street scenes. Don’t let the hundreds of professional landscape images that abound on the net, produced by photographers shooting the D700, fool you into thinking that it’s a good camera for landscape work ;-)

            • Jorge Balarin
              September 25, 2012 at 2:40 pm

              Thank you for the link JR, I will check it, but don’t fight with Sahajpal : )

            • JR
              September 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm

              LOL!!! No, I don’t want to fight with Sahajpal. I want to encourage him to use the D600 for landscapes. I want to see him make some KILLER landscape pics with the D600, because I know he CAN!!!

            • Sahajpal Rai
              September 25, 2012 at 3:18 pm

              JR — My HDR is consist of max 3 shots following is the link I just got back from Grand Canyon and took those Pictures they are consist of 2 shots. Hope this helps what am I talking about. Those shots are from Nikon D800 not D600.


            • JR
              September 25, 2012 at 3:28 pm

              *FANTASTIC* image, Sahajpal!!! Congratulations.

              Couldn’t you have taken the same image with the D600? Of course you could have! Whether you WANT to use the D600 for landscape is another thing, of course, But having nearly indentical dynamic range, the D600 could EASILY produce images like that.

              It’s not the camera that matters, but the photographer! ;-)

            • Sahajpal Rai
              September 25, 2012 at 4:09 pm

              Nope I can’t with D600 the time I will be done sun would move and whole scene would change like the other picture. The difference between those two pictures are less then Minute and I would have to loose one to get the other with D600. My answer is Nope I can’t with D600. I really don’t know how can I convince you but my answer is firm if you have to take more then one shot for blending then this not for me. This camera is for hand held shots and I am loving it as long as I have to take People pictures or sports picture . I love the colors and fast AF system. Now I have two cameras one for Nature and other for People Photography.

            • JR
              September 25, 2012 at 5:56 pm


              In your own words:

              “My HDR is consist of max 3 shots following is the link I just got back from Grand Canyon and took those Pictures they are consist of 2 shots.”

              “My answer is Nope I can’t with D600. I really don’t know how can I convince you but my answer is firm if you have to take more then one shot for blending then this not for me. ”

              So, you admit that you typically use only “3 shots” for HDR and that the shot of the Grand Canyon is done with two shots; and, you say that you cannot use the D600 when taking “more then one shot for blending”.

              I’m refraining from saying what I REALLY want to say, out of respect for Nasim, Roman and every other person on this forum who’s honestly seeking answers about the D600.

              Breathing deeply……

              OK, here are the specifications for each camera. You own them BOTH. Congratulations to you!

              Exposure bracketing:

              D600: 2 to 3 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1, 2 or 3 EV
              D800: 2 to 9 frames in steps of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1 EV

              Neither camera can do any better than 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 steps, right? The cameras have, for all intents and purposes, IDENTICAL dynamic ranges, right? In your own words, you typically shoot 3 frames for HDR and in the case of the Grand Canyon image, it’s a result of *TWO* stacked frames.

              So, please tell us what advantage/s the D800 has over the D600 for shooting landscapes when stacking *TWO* frames? Please explain to everyone on this forum, with details, the magic that you used to extract more detail, dynamic range and contrast from *TWO* frames, and how you couldn’t do the SAME with the D600?

              Please, tell us how you went BEYOND the technological limits and specifications of the D800 to make your Grand Canyon image?

              Folks, please look at the specs again and ask yourself, if for your typical 2-3 frame HDR shooting, there’s a difference between the cameras.

              Absurd, isn’t it? Completely, ABSURD.

              If you told us that the D800 is better at producing larger PRINTS than the D600, then you’d get little argument from me. But, to come on here and say that the D600 can’t produce similar landscape images as the D800 when stacking *TWO* frames is not only wrong, but disrespectful to everyone trying to make an honest and informed decision about the D600.

              Please, if you need to justify your purchase of the D800, or have enough $$$ to burn that you can have a specialized “landscape camera” and another for “shooting people”, that’s your business. But respect the rest of the folks on here who know enough about photography to see through your absurdities.

            • Sahajpal Rai
              September 25, 2012 at 6:44 pm

              My last comment to you that you are 100% right and I don’t have time to spend to teach you what I do and how do I use camera.

  56. 56) kim
    September 22, 2012 at 4:23 pm


    I do have a request, and would greatly appreciate your guidance if you have the time. Could you comment about the AF tracking and its ability to stay in focus when shooting fast moving subjects i.e. animals at fast and erratic speeds. I have a D700 and it has performed flawlessly taking thousands of photos of dogs at play. I now have the D600 and the ISO capability, dynamic range and color rendition are beyond anything I could have imagined. My static shots are perfect without any focus issues. However, I cannot seem to consistently get sharp focus on tracking running and jumping dogs. I am using AF-C mode, dynamic 21 points, center point only. I have also tried 3d for high contrast head on shots. I have tried using all settings for the tracking lock-on ranging from 6 down to off and still am struggling. The lens I have been using so far is a Nikkor 80-200 mmf/2.8 which performed flawlessly with the D700. Tomorrow I will try the Nikkor 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6G ED IF AF-S VR. I am trying to determine if the problem is user error on my end, or if the AF module is the issue, or if the internal screw drive motor (which is used for the 80-200 mm lens) of the D600 is not as robust as the D700. I hope to figure this out to determine if I need to return the D600 and upgrade to the D800. After seeing what these new sensors can do, there is no question that it is time to sadly leave the reliable D700 behind.

    If it turns out that the D800 is what I should purchase, could you also comment on using the Nikkor 70-300 mm in terms of producing good quality shots? The lens is not on the list Nikon recommends with the D800E, but they are selling this lens at a discount with the D800 currently so I am confused. The D4 is out of the question for me.

    I really appreciate all of the information and teaching you provide. Thank you.

    • 56.1) Sahajpal Rai
      September 22, 2012 at 4:50 pm

      Kim — one comment above you is mine I used 70-200 lens to track shuttle yesterday and all my shots are sharp. also if you like I can also post the running dog shots but not developed yet but can post for you so you can see that too. I used 24-70 lens for that.

      • 56.1.1) kim
        September 24, 2012 at 8:00 pm

        I would appreciate hearing your experience using the lenses you have for action shots of your dogs and seeing your photos, preferably RAW if possible. So far, I am getting extremely inconsistent focus during a 5-8 shot bursts- one shot may sharp (or almost – tack sharp images have been rare) and then next not. I am seeing soft images, not motion blur. I am shooting at shutter speeds of 1/2000, at times stopped down to f/5.6 or 6 to add DOF, without pushing the ISO above 2000 in well lit conditions. I am shooting RAW. I find that sometimes the camera just will not lock on and fire. I will hold the shutter and just watch the shot go by. I never had this problem with the D700 and the same lenses mentioned above. I have tried AF-C: S, 9 and 21 points. I have tried AF-C focus vs release priority and have tried AF lock on ranging from long to off and am still having trouble with consistent focus. Looking at the images in NX-2, I am suspecting that this problem could be due to a combination of inadequate optics as well as the lack of robustness of the AF system. However, I do not have the expertise to know and as always, assume user error as the first problem. I wonder if I need to upgrade from the 80-200 mm f/2.8 to the 70-200mm f/2.8 or if this camera is just right for the demands I am placing on it. Thanks for your help and from anyone else who might have suggestions or recommendations.

  57. 57) Kim
    September 22, 2012 at 10:37 pm

    I saw your shots and they are terrific. I hope you are right and the problem I am experiencing is a result of my non-AFS lens. However, I have one observation; the lighting for your scenes was constant unlike the light I have been working in. One thing I have repeatedly noted is that when panning while tracking an action shot, the D600 does not respond quickly to sudden changes in lighting. For instance today, my dogs raced from a sunny field to a shaded area under a tree canopy and the metering went from being just where it needed to be until they crossed the line and entered the shade. The next 4 pictures of the 8 shot burst I was taking were grossly underexposed. As soon as I started shooting again taking photos in the shade, the meter was back on track. I repeated this several times and got reproducibely incorrect metering. This did not happen on my D700.

    The autofocus system, I believe integrates data from the light metering module to help achieve focus. If the problem I am experiencing is not user error which it certainly could be, or lens related given the screw drive dependence of my non AF-S, 80-200 mm f/2.8 lens, is it possible that the metering system is not able to adapt as quickly as it does in the D700 thus limiting rapid changes in autofocus? I do not have any where close to the technical expertise to know the answer, but hope that Nasim or others might be able to help me understand.

    Thanks for your input and sharing your photos. I plan to try a different lens tomorrow.

    • 57.1) William Jones
      September 22, 2012 at 11:49 pm

      I am returning my D600 to the store today, due to AF issues. Have to AF Fine Tune every lens, all with different values. The other issue with the D600 may be AF speed, due to the size of the battery. My D3X and D3S all have large batteries with a lot more power. Large non AF-S lenses (like the 80-200 and the 80-400) may require too much power for the D800, D7000 and D600 to move quickly enough. I sold my D800 because of focus issues (too slow, unreliable focus, 3-D not staying on target), and the issues you have mentioned in your various posts may also be related to focus speed.

      Shots I took of my running dogs with the D600 and a 80-200 lens were poor. The focus seemed to lag. I did not try my 28-300 AF-S lens on my D600. Will try with a replacement unit to see.

      Had hoped the D600 would replace my D3X (higher ISO range, faster FPS in FX mode [especially in 14-bit NEF], lower weight, and some other advantages). However, if the camera is too underpowered to handle large AF zoom lenses, then will not be able to use (unless Nikon releases an 80-400 AF-S lens). Can always replace my 80-200 with a 70-200 AF-S lens.

      Note: I did shoot part of one high school football game on Sep 21st with the D600 and the 80-200 lens. Would have shot more, but there was too much rain. Got some good shots, however the focus speed did seem too slow to me.

      Would advise you to shoot the fast running cats with the D700, until you can resolve any issues with the D600.


  58. 58) Sudip Kundu
    September 23, 2012 at 9:37 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    The day I have logged into your websites with a recommendation from my friend, I became a fan of yours. I do appreciate the level of your reviews for us. But one thing I have noticed that Nikon and Canon being the greatest competitors brands like Pentax are left aside. But the reviews with Pentax K5 in other websites reveals that it is not behind Nikon and Canon with many aspects sometimes better than them. Pentax has recently launched K 5 II and K 5 IIs as you may be well aware. I would wish to get some reviews on these camera’s as they provide good qualities with economy which Nikon and Canon cannot provide. Just to inform that I am recently using Canon 60 D. Waiting eagerly for your reviews on Pentax.

    Thanks and Regards

  59. 59) Shel
    September 24, 2012 at 7:28 am

    Hi Nasim,

    First off, love the website, so much great information. Looking forward to the D600 review. I picked mine up on Friday, and am loving it so far, the image quality is astounding. One issue I’m encountering right now though is that i notice a lot of magenta in the shadows, especially when i use shadow protection in ViewNx2 to boost them. Obviously LR does not support the D600 yet so not sure if same thing will occur there as well. Have you encountered this problem at all? My D5100 was able to boost shadows quite well without any magenta showing, so wondering what this is. Thanks!


    • 59.1) Chen
      October 26, 2012 at 8:43 pm

      I met this problem too. I mean the magenta cast in shadows when High ISo

  60. 60) Ismatullo
    September 24, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    Насим, переданяя часть Nikon D600 изготовлена из пластика. Рекомендуется ли ставить в этом случае на байонет камеры объективы как Sigma 70-200 и Nikon 80-200?
    Спасибо заранее.

    • September 25, 2012 at 8:13 pm

      Pochemu bi net? Nichego s kameroy ne proizoydet…

  61. 61) William Jones
    September 24, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    Fur purposes of action shots, I think that the D600 is going to have the same issue that I have with the D7000 and D800; namely the battery. I am spoiled by using a D3x (and D3S) for action. The batteries of the D3 series are rated at 11.1 Volts, while the battery used in the D600, D800 and D7000 models is only rated at 7.0 volts; a drop of 4.1 volts or an almost 37% decrease in power. Prime AF-S lenses of short focal lengths are not the problem, however the lenses I use for sports (80-200 and 80-400), are both AF and heavy. Simply put, the EN-EL15 battery doesn’t quite have enough Wheaties (to my thinking). I could switch to the 70-200 AF-S, however Nikon has yet to release an AF-S 80-400.

    I would like to see (if possible), a timing test for focus between any of the D3 series camera and at least one of these three: D600, D800, D7000. Would like to see this test with the 70-200, 80-200, 300 and 400 primes, and even the 80-400 (if possible).

    For what it is worth, the D4 battery is almost as powerful (in volts) as the D3 series battery, and the battery used by Canon for the 1D X has a rating of 11.1 volts.


    • 61.1) kim
      September 24, 2012 at 9:02 pm

      At first, I was questioning if the focus problem could be due to a weaker motor for the internal screw drive, but my D700 battery is only 7.4 volts, and I am having the same AF trouble with the D600 when using my Nikkor 70-300 mm AF-S lens as I am with the 80-200 mm f/2.8 (see post #111). I am really interested to hear the experience of those who have used the D600 with the 70-200 mm f/2.8 in fast paced environments. Given the harsh lighting I often work in, I can see a huge increase in the dynamic range in my photos from the D700 to the D600, and for that reason plus many others ie. ISO ability, ergonomics, weight, handling, etc, I am really hoping to figure out if I can effectively use the D600 for the type of photography I do.

      • 61.1.1) William Jones
        September 24, 2012 at 10:18 pm


        If you would like to talk with me directly, then E-mail me at: This will keep us from cluttering up this forum with too much back and forth.

        I have owned, and used for sports, the following cameras:
        D90, D700, D3X, D7000, D800, D4, D3S, D600. Of these, the most successful for sports have proven to be the D3X and D3S. I started with one D90, then added a second one (however I did not like shooting with two cameras), so sold one and got a D700, and shot with only it for a while. Then I sold the second D90 and got a D3X, which became my primary sports camera. Then got a D7000, was never satisfied (not after shooting FX), and sold it (also focus issues with it). Got a D800, and sold it after 17K+ shots (so it had a good trial as a sports camera). Got a D4, and returned it to the store three weeks later. Both the D800 and D4 had focus issues, especially with AF-C single point (how I shoot most of my action shots). I am working on my second D600 (returned the first one due to extreme back focus issues. The second one has some back focus, about negative 10 for all lenses, so is acceptable). However, the D600 has the same AF-C single point focus issue as the D800 and D4 (even though the focus system is not the same as those two cameras). I have tried it also in AF-C 3-D, but the focus point jumps all over the place (at least with dogs. Hope to try on polo by tomorrow, or at least by the end of this week). AF-C 3-D focus on the D800, even with horses, also jumped all over the place.

        I do not currently own a 70-200 AF-S lens, but am using the 80-200 (for football) and the 80-400 (for polo), so will report more detailed results within a week. Horses are a lot bigger target than small dogs, but they are also a lot further away at times. I may try some football with the 28-300 (not the best lens in the world, but at least is AF-S).

        It appears to me that the AF-C focus issue for these cameras is due, as I stated earlier, not to a weaker motor, but instead to a smaller power source (the battery). It could also be gearing within the camera, but that is pure speculation on my part.

        The D600 has a lot of promise over the D3X: better ISO range, lower weight, a lot lower price, better DR, etc. However, it just may not have the ability to focus fast enough. Surely we are not the only people shooting action that read this website, so I hope others will join this discussion.

        I have noticed that the most severe issues with the AF-C focus is when the target is moving either directly towards or away from the camera; when the required change in focus is happening quickly. If the target is moving more parallel to the camera, then there is less issue. Even so, the first case still makes this unacceptable. I have been able to get a 90%+ hit (in focus) ratio with my D3X and D3S, however with the D800, D4 and now D600, I seldom even get 50%. Same person shooting, so don’t blame my technique. Nikon, we have a problem, or should I say, you do.

        Otherwise, I have been pleased with the D600. I just hope the AF-C issue can be resolved, as I don’t have a sherpa to carry around my heavy gear (and I ain’t getting any younger).

        I plan to run some tests on focus speed on Tuesday, Sep 25th, with the 80-200 and 80-400. I don’t know if my plans will work, so will advise details later if they do, and will post results. I will test at least two cameras (D3X and D600), and may also test the D3S (should be the same as D3X, but you never know).


        • Jorge Balarin
          September 25, 2012 at 6:42 am

          Thank you William for sharing your feedback. I think that all those cameras with new technology were launched to fast, under difficult conditions (floodings, etc), and they need some autofocus refinement. The landscape shooters can go on, but the action and reportage shooters have problems…and after waiting so much for updates with new sensor technology : (

          Now, how much more are we going to wait ? It seems we must keep our old gear for some things, and buy the new cameras only for those situations where we can shoot in AF-D center point (recomposing). Greetings, Jorge.

      • 61.1.2) Jorge Balarin
        September 25, 2012 at 7:04 am

        I rented a D800 to shoot a music event, along with my D700. I use to shoot in AF-C and D, with focus priority. In some situations – not specially tough – the D800 refused to make focus and shoot, while in the same circumstances I didn’t have any problem with my D700 (the two cameras were hanging from my neck at the same time). My impression is that for whatever reason, the new autofocus systems of the cameras recently launched are not so good as the ones of older cameras like the D3s and D700; so the new “updates” must be improved to really be updates. Greetings, Jorge

  62. 62) Jayw
    September 27, 2012 at 7:17 am

    Just received my D600 from amazon. It is made in Tailand: is this the same for eveyone?

  63. 63) Christian
    September 27, 2012 at 9:43 am

    Dear Nasim,

    I am, in particular, interested in the performance of the autofocus system of the D600. Further, I would kindly like to know the file size of the images in 14 and 12 bit raw.

    I am looking forward to your review. Can you already anticipate when it will be ready to be posted?

    Many thanks,

  64. 64) William Jones
    September 27, 2012 at 10:31 am

    On average, 14-bit NEF files are about: 30,600,000 bytes in size (this is based on 1,600 such files averaged). Since I don’t shoot 12-bit NEF, I can’t provide answer for that size.

    • 64.1) Christian
      September 27, 2012 at 3:43 pm

      Many thanks for jumping in, William!

      My 32GB Sandisk SD card will be fine then. I will use the second one as a “backup card” in the second slot.

  65. 65) Christian D.
    September 30, 2012 at 10:45 pm

    Hi Nasim,
    As i am Planning to Busy a FX body, I basically want to decide between D600 and D800.
    A very skilled photography friend advised to buy the D600 as the D600, D800 and D4 all have the same processor and AF system. For me not only doing landscape and portrait/street photography but now also sports photography is important.
    Specifically I want to know if I can reduce the image size on the D800 down to the one of the D4 in raw and get higher frame/second rate with the D800 than?
    Which other differences are there between the D600 and the D800 apart from price and picture resolution? Ding a comparison on the Nikon website, they seem pretty similar on the paper….
    I know the D800 has a max shutter speed of 1/8000. But what else, that is important?

  66. 66) Steve McCall
    October 1, 2012 at 12:06 am

    Nasim .. D600 is Nice SLR Camera I like it more than my D800.

  67. October 1, 2012 at 10:31 am

    Please let me know what you think about this camera’s low light capabilities. My interest is in high ISO night photography. I’ve mentioned several advantages this camera has on my blog today:

    …but I’m not sure I totally agree with DxO Lab’s report that it is the 3rd best Nikon ever (as far as the image sensor is concerned) …falling just behind the D800. If it is, it will make a great back-up to the D800.

  68. 68) Gary S
    October 1, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    “14bit depth Problem”

    Following the instructions on page 94 in the D600 manual, I tried to set the “bit depth” to 14. I had the camera set to “Aperture-Priority” when I tried to enable this feature. No matter how I tried the 12bit remained.

    A fellow Nikonian walked me through the procedure as he followed the same on his D600. We both took 5 pictures and his image’s metadata showed the chosen “bit depth”, while all of mine “12 bit”.

    I received this camera on 9/19 from Amazon and I am returning for a replacement. Other than this , the D600 is a very good camera.

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