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on Aug 14, 2008 in Camera Gear Posts

A week of D700 shooting

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I’ve been shooting with the D700 exclusively now for a week (never picking up the D3) and the frame counter has just hit 10,000 so I thought I would pass along a couple of D700 thoughts. It is without doubt  the funniest little camera I’ve shot with in a long time, even replacing the D200 as a favorite. Since I’m basically in “tour” mode, as in getting off the boat and walking the streets of Kona, I wanted a “small” camera over my shoulder. The D700 without the MB-D10 is just that, it’s a small camera and quite a delight to be carrying around while capturing BIG image quality (I honestly don’t see why you’d buy a small camera and then make it big by adding a battery pack when you bought a small camera but that’s just me). Having a pop up flash is really sweet especially with the larger size of the SB-900. Having the pop up flash working as a commander makes the amount of gear to carry less which is a plus.

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The image quality is exactly what you’d expect from the D3 sensor which now has a new home. The buffer size being the same, the shooting experience is exactly the same as the D3. That’s a good thing because I’ve become quite use to that. The battery life I have to admit is a lot better then I thought it would be. I’ve only charged the battery once since first starting to shoot with the D700. I have to admit not having a vertical firing button has messed me up mentally a couple of times though. So has the slightly slower fps. The D3 and D700 are so darn similar it’s spooky!

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One thing I’m not liking at all is the door for the CF card. It’s this new fangeled thing that you slide sidewise and then it pops open. It’s not built like a rock to say the least. A couple of times walking, my arm as slid it open by accident and one time when that happen, it caught on an object and instant panic as I thought I was going to break it off. I’m not liking that at all. But on the flip side, the image preview PIP is VERY cool and I like that a ton and find it to be something I’m wanting in the D3. Same with the active AF sensors selected when shooting in AAA. I love it in the D700 and hope Nikon incorporates it in the next D3 firmware upgrade.

Would I personally make the D700 my prime shooting camera? NO, I’ll stick with the D3. Would I go out on a project with a D3 as my prime camera and the D700 as a backup? In a heartbeat and without hesitation! Other than missing a couple features as I previously listed in my 1st D700 blog, you couldn’t find a better 1 for 1 backup then what you find in the D700. More then a week ago, I highly recommend it and while I’ve not has an opportunity to add it to Moose’s Camera Bag in writing, you can now count it as in.

Photos captured by D700, 14-24AFS/24-70AFS on Lexar UDMA digital film