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on Mar 2, 2009 in Camera Gear Posts, Camera Tech

From Porsche to Rolls Royce

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The D3 or the D3x, is that the question? It really shouldn’t be. The D3x is a serious camera producing very serious files. How serious is your file needs, how seriously do you need all that detail? Can you photography (and computer) handle all the seriousness?

My first impressions of the D3x were wrong. I wasn’t wrong about image quality, oh no, it’s stunning. Rather, I was wrong about the tool. Shooting now for a couple of weeks with the D3x (Thanks Mike!) and pushing it hard, really hard, I have learned alot (and about my own photography) which is good. It started with our first day of shooting in FL with the  Snowy Egret and I saw the detail in and around the eye. Since then I’ve been trying to bring to life this mega detail (here and here) on this miniature stage. My goal is not to convince you that you need to buy a D3x or justify its price. I just want you to see the detail I see.

Here are a couple of side by side photos taken with the D3x and D3 using the 70-180macro. The orchard images were taken at f/38 and the stamps at f/11, manually focused, 14bit raw. The files are straight from the cameras other than the Zoomify which have to be switched to 8bit (all are now Jpegs, conversions by the programs).

You make the call, but you might not see the difference in the narrow band the web offers (not sure I can now that it’s posted). And the reality is the vast majority of you are not likely to be a future D3x owner. Am I? Yeap! Though the original client desiring the files of the D3x has had to pull back with current events, I love where the D3x has pushed me and my photography. It’s a good thing for me. Want to understand what that is, well, it just so happens to be in the upcoming BT Journal. Because I am now convinced a web based review of the D3x just doesn’t work, only print will show the detail.

Take what you have, camera, computer and passion and push it to their limits. Like Cheryl Crow says, “It’s not having what you want, it’s wanting what you have.”

Photo capture by D3x, 14-243AFS on Lexar UDMA digital film