Even when I’m on a well deserved vacation this God forsaken industry refuses to allow me to get some rest. Here I was trying to relax on the beach on a beautiful sunny day in the Bahamas, quietly sipping some exotic looking drink I can’t remember the name of, when my phone starts going crazy. Facebook, SMS, Email, Whatsapp – fucking everything started giving me notifications while at the same time calls were being diverted from the office as well. Similar to a crazy war veteran, I started getting flashbacks from 2008 when the 1D Mark III debacle was still upon us and started reciting prayers in my mind hoping to God this was not related to issues with the 1DX or 5D Mark III.
Turns out all the fuss was about the piece of shit Nikon D800 and D4 winning the EISA 2012-2013 camera of the year awards. If you ever had any doubt about all these awards and reviews in this industry being nothing more than a big fucking joke, then I’m hoping that this will remove all doubt. Just check this out:
The EISA judges said: “The best professional camera of the year is Nikon’s full frame 16-million-pixel D4, for its ability to deliver the highest image quality even in extremely difficult conditions. Tests performed by EISA magazines found the camera has an exceptional combination of high resolution, wide dynamic range, very low noise levels even at ISO 12800, super-fast autofocus, short response time and high frame rates that can be maintained for very long sequences. The body is rugged and well protected against dust and moisture. The viewfinder delivers a sharp, comfortable and very precise view of what will be recorded. Almost perfect handling makes the D4 very easy and pleasant to use and we especially like the new joystick control that’s available whether the camera is in the horizontal or vertical position. The D4 also delivers very high video quality thanks to its uncompressed output.”
This is just pure hogwash. High video quality? BAHAHAHAHA right, with all the softness, moire and aliasing? Looks like the EISA judges aren’t aware of Philip Bloom’s review:
And highest image quality? With the shitty JPEG engine in both the D4 and D800?? Please, don’t make me laugh. Even the 5D Mark III JPEG images look better than the D4 images:
So, what can be taken away from this test? Well, the 5DIII kicks the daylights out of the D4, no doubt about it. The kickers that make the 5DIII even more superior: it has 6Mp more resolution than the D4 and only costs half as much. Talk about getting bang for your buck!
After comparing the sets of images in Lightroom and comparing the two cameras, there wasn’t exactly a clear winner. The Nikon D4 seemed to have cleaner highlights, while the Canon 1Dx appeared to have better contrast and possibly cleaner shadows. In the end, if we have to award a point here and pick a winner, it’s the Nikon D4 – by a hair. Still, the Canon 1Dx still has slightly more pleasing colour and overall image tone.
Not to mention the awful as fuck green screen on both the D4 and D800 that makes everyone, including Ken Rockwell, want to shoot with Canon instead:
Matt is not alone in noticing this issue with the Nikon D4, as a simple internet search will instantly reveal many others complaining of the same green screen issue. Matt has actually called Nikon about the issue and feels that Nikon may have been a bit coy in their response when they claimed that this was the first they have heard of it, and boldly claimed that the D4 has a more actuate screen than its predecessors. Maybe Nikon doesn’t have the internet?
Needless to say, the greenish cast that the Nikon D4 exhibits is enough of an issue to put Matt into a big decision scenario; stay with Nikon or switch to Canon? Though there have been reports and claims of fixes and work-arounds to counter the green screen issue, we found that none have been effective in resolving it. Canon has an incredibly enticing system in the 1DX…is it enough to sway Matt away from his beloved Nikon system after over a decade of professional loyalty?
And super-fast autofocus on the D4? Well, certainly these guys seem to disagree with those fucking EISA idiots:
The previous tests were close to call. This wasn’t. The Canon 1Dx ABSOLUTELY DESTROYED the Nikon D4 in the AF speed test. It was almost three times faster than the Nikon. Where the D4 was yielding an average of just under one image per second, the 1Dx was handily snapping three. Even more telling was the hesitation that the Nikon D4 seemed to display, at times not knowing if it should continue to focus forward, or head back. In contrast, the Canon 1Dx just ripped it to shreds, launching it’s AF like a shotgun, sure and confident, every time.
Matt, who has over a decade of experience with Nikon cameras & lenses was absolutely blown away by the Canon performance here. He echoed himself over and over again for hours afterward, saying “I can’t believe how fast that Canon can drive those lenses…” A clear winner in the Canon 1Dx
No wonder these guys are considering getting the 1DX instead of the D4:
And high resolution? The 1DX wins here with 18MP – 2 MP more than the D4. High frame rates? Again 1DX wins with 14fps compared to 10fps on the D4.
So you tell me: Apart from some obviously huge Nikon cocks, what the bloody fuck are those EISA judges smoking? The 1DX should have been the winner here.
And then there’s the D800. Oh God, the D800. I’ve spent a number of posts discussing this stinking heap of crap in the past already. First we had those fucking idiots at DxOLabs blatantly misleading everyone with their claims. Now it looks like these morons from EISA also want to join in and continue to mislead the entire fucking industry with the D800, strangely while the press stands by and watches it happen. This is what the fuckwads at EISA would have you believe:
The EISA judges said: “This year’s best camera is the Nikon D800. Its 36-million-pixel full frame sensor offers exceptionally high resolution capture and, according to EISA magazine tests, no compromises have been made to the extent of the camera’s dynamic range or noise levels at high ISO settings. In a compact and reasonably priced, strong and sturdy body, it offers first-rate metering and a 51-point autofocus system developed from the professional D4. The camera has a clear and bright 100% viewfinder that is very precise and comfortable to use even for glasses wearers. The tiny flash can command additional Nikon flash units and delivers just the right amount of fill-in illumination even in complex lighting conditions. The D800E version delivers even higher resolution images without needing any post processing sharpening: the image quality comes close to that of a medium format camera, but with the benefits and versatility of a lightweight 35mm reflex camera.”
No compromises have been made with noise levels at high ISO settings? I beg to differ.
How can it be that the D800 gets a better score for low light high ISO shooting (2853 ISO), while clearly the 5D Mark III has less noise at the high ISO values????? Clearly there’s something seriously wrong here, and DxOMark is misleading everyone with their overall scores. In the noise graph above the 5D Mark III is in the middle, and when it comes to the scores, suddenly the D800 performs better. But even from the sample pictures above, it’s clear that the D800 performs worse at the high ISO values. So how can it get a higher score for low light shooting on DxOMark??
Don’t forget what Ken Rockwell said:
The Canon EOS 5D Mark III is the world’s best digital SLR. It easily lets us create smooth, clean, beautiful and colorful images in any sort of light. It handles much better my cheaper Nikon D800 and D800E; my 5D Mark III handles and sounds smoother, quieter, feels better and makes better-looking images than my Nikon D800E. The 5D Mark III also has the best LCD ever put in a DSLR, while the LCD on my Nikon D800E is smaller in actual use, and most importantly, the Nikon’s LCD isn’t color-accurate. My 5D Mark III LCD is big, bold, bright, sharp, clear, colorful and accurate, and automatically varies its brightness brilliantly for use in any light. (My D800E also has auto LCD brightness control, but doesn’t work well enough to want to use it.)
To shooters upgrading from the Nikon D800 and D800E, the Mark III is greatly improved over the Mark II, while the Nikon D800 and D800E are a step backwards in ergonomics and LCD quality from the D700. Therefore the status quo has reversed; I used to prefer Nikon, while today with the 5D Mark III, I greatly prefer it to my D800E. Pixels impress amateurs, while guys like me who shoot every day for a living are more impressed at how my 5D Mark III lets me get more of the right pixels faster, not just more of the wrong ones.
The 5D Mark III is the world’s best DSLR. It’s a huge improvement over the 5D Mark II due to the improvements from automatic color fringe correction, and the greatly improved power, depth-of-field and playback controls. If you shoot Canon, you deserve one of these.
Obviously those fuckwads at the EISA don’t know what the hell they’re talking about. Because the movie mode of the D800 is crap as well, with all the noise, aliasing and moire. This can be seen in Philip Bloom’s review above, but here’s another:
But the shitty green screen LCD, the noisy-ass images and the horribly aliased and moired video are the least of your concerns if the universe hates you so much that today you somehow find yourself owning a D800. A bigger concern for you should be the malfunctioning autofocus system on the D800, that as of right now, is shaping up to become the equivalent of the 1D Mark III debacle for Nikon.
So here you have a camera with a 36MP sensor, that’s so fucking overhyped with regards to the resolution that it supposedly produces (which in reality isn’t that much more compared tot he 5D Mark III), but apparently you can’t actually focus accurately to take advantage of the resolution on the sensor. I have to say, this reminds me of the 5D Mark II which had a similar problem. Fortunately Canon Inc. got their act together with the 5D Mark III, but all of you Nikon morons are now fucked with the D800. Similar to the green screen LCD, Nikon apparently refuses to really acknowledge the autofocus problem on the D800. Nikon whore Thom Hogan already had the following to say about it:
The one thing I think Nikon is getting wrong here is this: Nikon knows they messed up and shipped some number of defective cameras. Yet they are defacto forcing the customer not only to detect the problem, but to pay for shipping of the unit back to Nikon for repair. I think the least Nikon could (and should) do is this: for every camera they receive that actually gets fixed by this new recalibration test, Nikon should refund the shipping cost to the customer. If I were in charge, I’d go further than that and try to find some small reward I could include above and beyond that, along with a note of apology.
Yes, that’s costly. But so is a US$3000 camera that doesn’t focus right. Why is the customer the one that gets punished here?
Here’s more from Thom Hogan:
August 7 updated (commentary)–Consider this email: “I got the estimate today for my D800 AF repair; it’s listed as a B2 repair and they want to charge me $245 for the repair as I did not include the bill of sale. I called and asked them if there were any D800’s out of warranty and they insisted that it was procedure. I was bucked up to a supervisor who also insisted that I needed to send them a bill of sale.”
Let’s see, the camera has a NikonUSA sticker on it, the serial number starts with 30, the camera has only been out for a couple of months, the camera was registered immediately on purchase on the Nikon site, need I say more? In short, Nikon’s customer support has always been on the poor side, but making customers jump through hoops to service a known problem is just pathetic. Oh, did I mention that the person in question was an NPS member and someone who has taught photography for 30 years? Just how many students do you think he might influence as to camera decisions?
Nikon morons are literally filling up the Internet with their complaints regarding the autofocus issues on the piece of shit D800. Here’s a screenshot taken on Nikon Rumors:
“Many loyal customers are now switching to 5d mark III or 1DX due to superior AF system and better low light capabilities.”
Those Nikon morons really need stupid fucks like DxOLabs and EISA to make them feel better about spending their money on the worthless crap that is the D800.
That’s just fucking hilarious. Here’s what Lloyd Chambers has to say:
But after testing today with my D800 and D800E both just back from Nikon, my conclusion remains the same as what I initially showed in my review of the Nikon D800: the D800 /D800E has poor autofocus precision, and that’s with the center focusing sensor, which is the best one (one example). In short, the asymmetry issue is a footnote issue compared to the fundamental problem of poor precision in general.
In my testing today under the same conditions, the Canon 5D Mark III + 85mm f/1.2L II achieved both high precision and high accuracy, similar to what I found with the Canon 1D X autofocus. If anything, an ƒ/1.2 lens is more of a challenge than an ƒ/1.4. lens.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Lloyd, man, just get a 5D Mark III or a 1DX and throw that piece of shit D800 in the river.
And similarly, you may want to check out this website with a discussion of the D800 issues. Here’s the end result after some failed attempts at getting it fixed:
My choice(s)? Getting rid of a defective product, not bothering to check the My Nikon website each day for reasonable answers that never come, skipping the robotic conversations full of empathy but no meaningful information, not risking an additional failed attempt by Nikon’s Service Center to fix my D800, not wasting my time taking photos of test charts, and using the camera I already have. The good news? My doctor also tells me that, with time, the phenomenon of seeing Siemens Stars everywhere will eventually subside. 😉 And if Nikon will reimburse me $73 for the scenic, but fruitless trip my D800 took to Melville, I suspect I will feel even better.
So once again, my D7000 is glad the D800 has left our home. And this time… so am I.
Here are some quotes from the comments:
Nikon’s stupidity and arrogance are beyond belief!…or are they? As much as I and many respect this site, Thom Hogan, the more sane posters at dpreview, etc., many D800 owners,such as those Thom met in Alaska, have no idea they have a defective camera and a manufacturer whom doesn’t give a damn.
Galbraith is offline, Nikon Reviews is apparently a shill, Kelby is all self-promotion now—who is going to speak up for poorly treated Nikon customers?
It unfortunately seems that there are many cameras Nikon cannot fix with recalibration. If recal was the solution, they would have done it a long time ago. It is a stopgap measure which can improve some cameras, but there must be a major manufacturing/structural error which is so expensive for Nikon to fix or replace, they have decided not to do it. That is why there has been no public statement.
So, if you have a camera they cannot “fix” with recal, Nikon has abandoned you. What can we do about it?
No class action suit unless someone is injured (your response when I suggested this previously)? I’m not an expert or a lawyer.
Nikon needs to pay for this, in more ways than one. What can we do?
Those readers who have suggested we need a kinder, gentler response to those nice Nikon people need not apply.
After hearing of the mess Nikon has made of this problem and comparing it to my experience with my first Nikon, the D5000, I am seriously considering selling all of my Nikon equipment and moving to Canon.
I finally got my D800 back from Melville, exactly a month after sending it in due to extremely inconsistent af. I of course had to cover the shipping and insurance costs. I tested it once again and found that it was in much worse condition than before sending it in. Before I sent it in the center point was slightly off and the edges were a complete mess. After receiving it back the edges are slightly better but the rest of it is absolutely horrendous, including the center! The af is so bad that I can even see through the viewfinder that it is not grabbing focus and it goes without saying that the resulting images are completely fuzzed. I am using charts and multiple lenses to test, i.e 24 1.4, 35 1.4, 24-70 2.8 and so forth. I am comparing all my results to lv which is perfect.
Being a full time photographer with multiple Nikon bodies and lenses including the D4, I am somewhat astonished and appalled by the conversations I have had with Nikon and with the treatment I am receiving.
I wish I had returned my body when I had the chance but wrongly trusted Nikon repair to do the right thing. It’s back in a box heading to Melville yet again and my fingers are crossed that I do not get stuck with a $3000 lemon.
My D800 is back from the second repair attempt. The left focus issue is not resolved. Maybe I can return it back to Amazon after 5 months of use … unbelievable …
After reading your story and several others in a number of forums I am convinced that I made the right decision when I returned my D800 to the vendor. As much as I like the D800 I cannot bring myself to spend $3k on something with a known defect that Nikon can’t seem to repair.
My D800 came back from Melville today UNREPAIRED. El Segundo had it for 19 days and couldn’t fix it. Melville received it Tuesday, overnighted it to me last night and it is still not focusing on the left. This issue was escalated to Nikon’s Sr. Management (I spoke to them on the phone yesterday) and they still could not get it right.
Those of you who ended up buying this piece of garbage can try to get sharp images by reading this post of mine.
What a nightmare for Nikon and all those Nikon morons who bought into the D800 hype. I warned all of you from the very beginning that the D800 was a piece of shit. I warned you, you poor pathetic fools, I warned you. But ya just wouldn’t listen. Some people have emailed me and called me a prophet or psychic, but with my 30 years of experience in this industry, “predicting” this stuff is a piece of cake. I’m not called the Canon Camera Guru for nothing – I fucking earned that title!
And honestly, when Nikon was caught using footage from the 5D Mark II to promote the D800, you had to realize the video quality from the D800 was probably nowhere near good enough to sell the camera. Certainly, as we’ve seen, it sucks compared to the 5D Mark III.
So what do those fuckwads from EISA have to say about this??? Does this camera really deserve a camera of the year award? Honestly? As far as I’m concerned, Nikon can go ahead an rebrand the D800 to become the Nikon 1D Mark III. It fucking deserves that title!
Everywhere you look right now, people are impressed with the 1DX and 5D Mark III, especially with regards to the autofocus system. Both of these cameras are using the new 61-point AF system with 41 cross-type points that just kicks incredible amounts of ass in terms of speed and accuracy.
But there’s something seriously wrong in Europe. Nikon appears to have some strong influence on key organizations and publications in Europe. DxOLabs is one, but EISA clearly is also biased towards Nikon. I’ve already sent an email to Mitarai to have this situation thoroughly investigated.
CLEARLY what you can get out of all of the above, is that the Canon 1DX and Canon 5D Mark III are really the best DSLR cameras available today. Everyone who is honest and isn’t biased or influenced by Nikon says this. You simply cannot come to a different conclusion GOD DAMMIT!!!!1
Now all of you stop bothering me and let me enjoy the rest of my vacation.