Thoughts on potential FX camera purchase D6xx or D800/800E?

Joined
Dec 27, 2010
Messages
899
Location
Vermont
Hello,

I'm starting to get the itch to get my photography going again and even before my lull started I had always lusted to get a full frame camera, but was not in a position to get one new let alone drop $1-2K on a used FX body. With used prices now coming down on camera's such as the D600/610 and even the D800/800E I feel it's a good time to jump in the FX waters.

I consider myself an advanced amateur and currently own a D7000 and D7100 which have (and still continue) to serve me very well. I have a variety of lenses (mostly FX), both prime and zoom including some old AI-S manual focus lenses as well as a Nikon (modern two ring) AF 80-200 f/2.8 and a recently acquired Nikon 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5 (original kit lens for the D6xx).

Specs wise I feel the D600/610 will be plenty adequate for my needs, but as my lovely wife reminded me this morning, I often times will choose something that meets my needs and then question whether I should have gotten the next step up in case I decide later to expand my horizons. In the case of the D6xx vs the 800/800E it's a matter of a couple hundred dollars or so, but I wanted to read peoples experiences and opinions about these models vs what I've researched online. I've read where the D800/810 needs to use the newer top tier lenses from Nikon as using anything else will result in poor image quality due to the extremely high resolution sensor showing flaws in older lenses that were never designed for a camera of this type. However I've also read where this is nothing more than a marketing scheme to push the newer (more expensive lenses). Then there is the D600/610 sensor oil issue and with the recent business related issues revolving around Nikon, I have concerns about getting a D6xx shutter replacement in the future should that need arise.

Again, as I mentioned the D6xx series is appealing as it's essentially a full frame version of my D7100 and operation will be practically identical between the two. However the "lust" and allure of a Pro level body is really hard to resist and if I'm able to get something at that level for a reasonable cost over the D6xx is there any reason that I shouldn't consider it?
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2009
Messages
6,800
Location
Alaska
Real Name
Dan
...I've read where the D800/810 needs to use the newer top tier lenses from Nikon as using anything else will result in poor image quality due to the extremely high resolution sensor showing flaws in older lenses...
This is utter nonsense typically written by bloggers who don't understand what the heck they read and then regurgitate. It is true that higher resolution cameras may "out resolve" some lenses. That does not mean that the IQ will be worse than any other camera using the same lens. It simple means that the lens is not good enough to take full advantage of the high resolution sensor. On a given lens more pixels will always capture more detail than less pixels, period. Maybe not as much as possible but it will be better. Besides, if you're already shooting a D7100 that's a higher resolution sensor than the D8xx series. So if this was an issue you'd already be seeing it with your existing lenses.

That said, I would not go the 800/800E route. I'd spend a couple hundred more for a D810. I've owned both and the 810 is far superior. Better AF, higher frame rate, better buffer, quieter shutter, etc. You can also shoot in 1.2x crop mode and get 24MP images or in DX mode you get 16MP images at 6fps.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Mar 25, 2011
Messages
3,242
Location
London
I thought that pure glass lenses designed for film had to be of high quality as there was no software adjustments available.
Current modern lenses can be imperfect and corrected in camera or in editing.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2009
Messages
6,800
Location
Alaska
Real Name
Dan
I thought that pure glass lenses designed for film had to be of high quality as there was no software adjustments available.
Current modern lenses can be imperfect and corrected in camera or in editing.
That has nothing to do with a specific body. Same would apply to any of them.
 
Joined
Mar 1, 2015
Messages
4,483
Location
Westmorland UK
I hadn't heard that lenses were an issue with the 800/800E/810 but I've read that the higher resolution cameras can catch photographers out if they aren't on top of their games i.e. handling skills.

Depending on your budget, you may also want to take a look at the D750. It's a better camera than the 600/610, albeit with the same sensor, same viewfinder I think, and pretty much the same controls. In fact if you were to swap your 7000 and 7100 for a D7200, that and the D750 would give you FX and DX cameras with identical control layouts. And two really good cameras.
 

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,473
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
I had the D800, 810 and 850. The D850 is starting to come down in used pricing, and it is a superior, do-all camera. I'd look for a D850. Only if I couldn't find one would I get a D810. D800/E? No.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2009
Messages
6,800
Location
Alaska
Real Name
Dan
I had the D800, 810 and 850. The D850 is starting to come down in used pricing, and it is a superior, do-all camera. I'd look for a D850. Only if I couldn't find one would I get a D810. D800/E? No.
Most definitely if you can swing for a D850 it's best of all.
 
Joined
Aug 18, 2011
Messages
863
Location
USA
When I bought in the summer of 2018, I chose the 810 over the 850 for two reasons: a) economy and b) I will not live long enough to outgrow, let alone master, the 810.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Dec 27, 2010
Messages
899
Location
Vermont
I would like to thank all of you so far for your feedback. Unfortunately as much as I would like to opt for something slightly newer than the D800/800E I'm likely going to be purchasing this camera through KEH and pricing for the D810 and D750 are still above $1000 in excellent condition. My wife has been trying to persuade me to go the eBay route, but I prefer the 6 month warranty from KEH and the ability to return if there's anything I'm unhappy with upon receiving the item. Not to mention many of the camera's I've seen that are slightly lower priced than KEH are VERY heavily used and worn looking and the nicer ones were at or higher than KEH pricing.
 

Butlerkid

Cafe Ambassador
Administrator
Joined
Apr 8, 2008
Messages
24,473
Location
Rutledge, Tennessee
Real Name
Karen
I would like to thank all of you so far for your feedback. Unfortunately as much as I would like to opt for something slightly newer than the D800/800E I'm likely going to be purchasing this camera through KEH and pricing for the D810 and D750 are still above $1000 in excellent condition. My wife has been trying to persuade me to go the eBay route, but I prefer the 6 month warranty from KEH and the ability to return if there's anything I'm unhappy with upon receiving the item. Not to mention many of the camera's I've seen that are slightly lower priced than KEH are VERY heavily used and worn looking and the nicer ones were at or higher than KEH pricing.
I agree about avoiding eBay at all costs. However, also check Adorama and B&H Used departments....and FM.
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2018
Messages
998
Location
Puget Sound
Real Name
Ken
Do you have any dealers near you that sell and warrant used equipment? I see D750's on MPB going for around $825, so I am sure you might be able to get something nice under $1k if you keep looking. Also, I see used Z5's for just over $1k, so there are options. I had a D610 and still had oil issues on the shutter. I was quite happy to trade it for something else.

Good luck,

--Ken
 
Joined
Dec 7, 2005
Messages
1,085
Location
MN, USA
I would like to thank all of you so far for your feedback. Unfortunately as much as I would like to opt for something slightly newer than the D800/800E I'm likely going to be purchasing this camera through KEH and pricing for the D810 and D750 are still above $1000 in excellent condition. My wife has been trying to persuade me to go the eBay route, but I prefer the 6 month warranty from KEH and the ability to return if there's anything I'm unhappy with upon receiving the item. Not to mention many of the camera's I've seen that are slightly lower priced than KEH are VERY heavily used and worn looking and the nicer ones were at or higher than KEH pricing.

Any number of us can give you positive feedback on KEH. Avoid Ebay for all the reasons you mention.
I had a D600 and yes it did have the oil splattering issues. The issues abated significantly after about 5k shutter actuations but I eventually sold it before Nikon offered the free shutter replacement. The D610 AFAIK replaced the D600 and did not have the oil issues. I replaced it with a D750 which I believe has a very similar sensor in terms of performance and I doubt that I could tell the difference in IQ between the two cameras. I can say that the D750's focus system was much better (faster and better in lowlight).

I never had any of the D8xx series though my brother-in-law (who is a professional photographer) loved the D800 and I believe the general consensus is the at the D850 is one of the best all-around cameras.
 
Joined
Mar 20, 2017
Messages
1,970
Location
Central Ohio
Real Name
Andrew
If you want a DSLR, get a used D700. I find it superior in many ways to the D600 series. Auto focus being the first thing.

if high MP are the desire, then used D810 would be my next choice. While the D850 is awesome, getting that much camera for the price is still an expensive proposition.

the D700 served me well for years. It is basically a non gripped slower FPS version of the Nikon D3.
 
Joined
Apr 30, 2005
Messages
3,898
Location
Massachusetts
Real Name
David
I'd go D800. If you can go a little higher you might look at a D750 only because it would be more familiar to you given your current bodies.

Avoid the D600, I also had one with oil spots. It was bad enough that Nikon replaced it with a D610. I would also avoid the D610, I sold the D610 new in the box for a D800. Why? The AF. @banditvt you own both a D7000 and D7100, image the smaller AF pattern of your D7000 (compared to your D7100) on an even larger frame. The 39 point AF pattern doesn't even cover the rule of 3rds framing on FX, so focus and recompose if you want that framing. It was a pain for bride & father or groom & mother on the 3rd for dances.

KEH versus other places? I would also look at least at FM, Hunts Photo, B&H, Adorama, and select eBay/Amazon. The select on eBay/Amazon is several reputable dealers have eBay/Amazon stores. I mention Hunts specifically because it's a bigger local (ish) store with 8 locations in New England; there's a store in Manchester NH, depending where you are in VT it might be an option to buy and for service/returns if needed.
 
Joined
Dec 27, 2010
Messages
899
Location
Vermont
KEH versus other places? I would also look at least at FM, Hunts Photo, B&H, Adorama, and select eBay/Amazon. The select on eBay/Amazon is several reputable dealers have eBay/Amazon stores. I mention Hunts specifically because it's a bigger local (ish) store with 8 locations in New England; there's a store in Manchester NH, depending where you are in VT it might be an option to buy and for service/returns if needed.

At this point I'm pretty convinced that within the budget my wife is allowing me of no more than $800ish (preferably less if possible) that I'm going to go with the D800. I'm also leaning heavily towards KEH as I've purchased a number of items from them in the past and everything so far (bargain grade or otherwise) as well as customer service has been stellar. Additionally looking at many of the other places you mentioned did not have much of anything in stock with the exception of eBay, and myself as well as friends/family have experienced issues recently with inaccurate/false descriptions and problems with returns and I just do not want to risk it.

KEH has the D800 listed in "bargain grade" for $662 and "excellent grade" for $834. I'm considering checking out the bargain grade unit to try and keep the wife a bit happier, however she has agreed that if the budget option doesn't meet my needs or expectations that I would return it and move up to the excellent grade option.
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2018
Messages
998
Location
Puget Sound
Real Name
Ken
Were there some issues that impacted a small number of D800's that were eventually corrected in the release of the D810? I remember Thom Hogan talking about them years ago, but as I shoot with different bodies, I did not pay much attention. You may want to acquaint yourself with the issue to see if it is present in any body that you consider purchasing.

--Ken
 

Latest threads

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Nikon Cafe is a fan site and not associated with Nikon Corporation.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Forum GIFs powered by GIPHY: https://giphy.com/
Copyright © Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom