I don't mind at all. I will say that this is my first foray in to a "Pro" level body as well as my first full frame DSLR so take that for what it's worth. Oh, and my apologies if I'm a bit long winded in my reply. ;-)Gary: do you care to post your feelings on the D800--I would love to learn from them. Best, jt
I was initially a bit concerned going to a "Pro" sized body and wondered if it was going to be too cumbersome to carry around for casual photos. I have average sized hands, and find the feel of the D800 quite comfortable to hold even though it's slightly larger than my D7000 and D7100.
Shooting in full uncompressed 14 bit RAW the files are HUGE!! Typical file size is around 75MB per image. On the advise of someone from this forum I tried shooting 12 bit Lossless Compressed and it drops the file size down to slightly above what my 24 megapixel D7100 puts out (between 30-40MB vs 25-28MB on the D7100 in 14 bit Lossless Compressed). I actually discovered the D7100 does not offer the option to select full uncompressed RAW and only does "Lossless Compressed" or "Compressed" in either 12 or 14 bit. I haven't done a comparison of all the bit rate/compression combinations, but have only compared the14 bit Uncompressed to the 12 bit Lossless Compressed and haven't been able to discern any noticeable difference between the two. Based on some limited research I've done, it seems that one would be unlikely to notice a significant difference in color between 12 or 14 bit unless you were printing large prints then directly comparing them side by side and even then it seems the differences would be minimal. Considering my D7100 only allows Lossless Compressed as an option I decided to stay with that on the D800, as well as shooting in 12 bit which (as mentioned above) cuts the file size down significantly and seems to be good for my needs.
Auto focus speed with screw drive lenses is quick as expected and Auto focus tracking for action seems to be quite good as well. Despite being considered more of a portrait and landscape camera, I've been able to do fast action sequences of a dog at full run with my Nikon AF 80-200 2.8 (two ring) which itself is not the ideal lens for capturing action, but with good technique and practice, it seems more than up to the task for my needs. Obviously with my Tamron 70-300 VC mounted the AF is lightning fast when compared to the 80-200.
Due to its 36MP sensor, using DX lenses in "DX crop mode" results in a very usable 15MP image which still allows some room for cropping in post. In some cases a couple of my DX lenses actually perform quite well even in "full frame" mode. I have a cheap Promaster (Tamron) 11-18mm 4.5-5.6 DX lens that works fine with no vignetting from 13-18mm, and my 35mm 1.8G DX has a large enough rear element that at f/1.8 has extremely little to no vignetting and gets progressively worse (however still recoverable) up to around f/4. At f/5.6 and higher it becomes to dark and is not recoverable. However the D800 also has a 1.2x crop mode (25MP) that crops just enough of the sensor area that allows me to use the 35mm DX lens unrestricted throughout the aperture range with no issue.
So far I'm extremely happy with the D800 and it seems to be meeting and/or exceeding my expectations in every way. It is kind of a "Jack of all trades" camera.