Understanding the Nikon D600
PART I - WHAT SORT OF A CAMERA IS THE D600?
The Nikon D600 is a game-changer.
Together with the D800, the Nikon D600 is the new state-of-the-art.
The evolution of digital has had a long uphill climb, and reached a new plateau.
In the following, I will try to show you how, and perhaps why.
The D600 & D800 make the cleanest, most detailed images ever
This is not another review
A DSLR IS LIKE NO OTHER TYPE OF CAMERA
The most recent electronic view finders, or EVF, - like in an Olympus OM-D or Fujifilm X100 work well and are fine alternatives to a reflex viewfinder, with some pros and cons.
A peephole viewfinder, like in the Leica, only gives a remote idea of how your picture is going to be framed, due to parallax errors and other reasons. You cannot use the viewfinder for example close-ups, and there is no way of judging depth-of-field. And while having no viewfinder at all may be ok for pocket cameras and phones, the screen is a hopeless in sunlight, or for those who have reached the old age of 40 years because they will not see clearly without reading glasses.
For critical use, there is nothing like a DSLR, with a big-sized viewfinder.
BUT WHY FULL-FORMAT?
Upper picture: Nikon D7000 with 24 mm f/2,0 AiS shot at f/2.
Lower picture: Nikon D600 with 35 mm f/2,0 AiS shot at f/2.
(Now, if you wanted these two pictures to have a similar depth-of-field, you would have to use an even brighter 24mm on the DX body; a 24mm f/1,4. Which, of course, exists, only it costs two or three times as much and, with its lens hood attached, has almost the weight and bulk of a D7000 body – not a very good solution if you consider that the main object of DX is smaller, lighter and cheaper than FX)
SENSOR SIZES, courtesy of Wikipedia:
WHY NIKON, SPECIFICALLY?
LENSES NEW AND OLD
Manual focus is still excellent, especially with full-frame bodies like the D600, because of their big viewfinders. Matrix metering works fine, viewfinder information is there, A and M modes work, as does auto ISO, automatic correction for chromatic aberration, flash works wonderfully even in auto, the Exif reads correctly…
* DX lenses in DX crop mode
THE PROBLEM WITH A BIG CAMERA
Enter Nikon D600
The D600 is Nikon’s smallest DSLR, ever
Pretend you want to go for a walk in the old town of Havana with a 24mm lens on your camera.
The smallest Nikon DSLR outfit if you want to use a 24mm lens. The D600 on the window sill of room 815 in Hotel Sevilla, Havana, overlooking the Prado and (in the distance) the Capitoleo.
Ok, but what is so special about the D600?
Sorry, I haven’t come to that yet. I keep interrupting myself.