Friday, January 11, 2008

Bjørn Rørslett on the D3

Norwegian Nikon expert Bjørn Rørslett on the Nikon D3.
(You can tell how repected this guy is as a reviewer by the fact that he apparently has had the D3 "for months". How do you get that gig?)
This guy is a big Nikon fan. It seems he owns practically every lens Nikon ever made.

"The ability to shoot under adverse light situations without resorting to the use of a mood-killing flash is perhaps one of the most important characteristics of the D3 concept. As such, it is bound to influence the approaches we follow in our day-to-day handling of photography challenges."

"For me the arrival of the D3 is the final nail in the coffin for "35mm" silver-halide reflex cameras. Of that I'm certain. [...] Film is no longer a viable option in this respect, unless you step up to a large-format view camera. But such a system is not suited for my approach to photography."

Update:
"Many users
[That's me], not familiar with pro-calibre DSLRS, might wish for a lighter camera and overlook the benefit of having a substantial mass behind your lens. The balance with the typical professional f/2.8 zoom lenses or a 300/2.8 telephoto is just about perfect."

I'm familiar with them, and as a street photographer, I really don't like the weight and the size. I got rid of my D2x for that reason, after I got the D200.

I never understood this talk about "balance". I have never in my life held a camera and thought "this has wrong balance" or "this has a good balance". I just don't get it. You hold the camera and you shoot, what's there to balance? You hold it in two hands, you don't balance it on a finger.

This is also the reason (apart from price of course) that I won't be getting the D3, despite the very lovable low-light performance. Instead I'm waiting for the replacement for Canon's 5D, which should have a similar sensor and a similar performance, but in a dramatically smaller form and price range. (The main reasons the big pro cameras are so expensive are high speed shooting and professional endurance, two features that don't apply to a street shootin' amateur like myself.)

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Friday, January 11, 2008   8 comments links to this post

8 Comments:

At 11 Jan 2008, 16:53:00, Anonymous ttl said...

Is it available for purchase? Have you ordered yours already?

 
At 11 Jan 2008, 19:06:00, Anonymous Paulie said...

Eolake,

First of all, I am glad that you are back in the saddle with your ladies. Great site. Have been a member for some time. Do more spreads on Nata. She looks like the girl who should be living next door to me!

Cameras are interesting to me. I have taught college photography for years and still my favorite camera is an old Nikon EL with an old 105 mm Nikor glass lens. Sharp and a great portrait lens. I also have a Fujifilm S1 pro which is my digital camera. Since it is made by Nikon, I also have one of their better zooms along with all of my older glass Nikor lenses. They fit but are not auto. So What?

Again you have a great site and I enjoy a range of your selected photographers.

Paul Campbell
Ohio, US
camploch@gmail.com

 
At 11 Jan 2008, 20:10:00, Blogger eolake said...

TTL,
They started delivery in December.

The D3's size and weight is way too big for me. I had the D2x and I ended up getting rid of it.

Instead I'm waiting for the Canon 5D's replacement, which should have similar high-ISO performance, I hope.

Paul,
Thank you very much.

 
At 11 Jan 2008, 22:52:00, Anonymous Paulie said...

Eolake,

You mentioned weight of the new D3. One of the reasons that I like my old EL is the weight and balance of holding it. Super results from this old fellow. Have never been disappointed. I still like film. Do my own processing and then send out for prints. Always black and white.

Best, Paul Campbell
Ohio, US

 
At 12 Jan 2008, 01:27:00, Blogger Alex said...

Stick a longer lens, 500mm or such on there and then see if you notice balance. I notice, even with a 28-300 zoom that the balance is different in the varying focal lengths. I always seem to have right hand on body, left supporting the lens, or body and lens depending on the weight balance or physical size.

I guess with the 500 mm the focus adjusted half way down the lens, and it had fairly simple lens elements at the front, leaving that mix unbalanced. That was even on the body without a motor-wind attached, so I am dating my comments here a bit.

Whatever the combination, you just feel the balance, and get on with it.

I think balance also is important in pens, kitchen knives, back packs, laptops for lap usage, car - for pitching around corners as much as for towing, indeed in every facet of our lives.

 
At 12 Jan 2008, 06:20:00, Anonymous bert said...

In my (limited) experience, balance is an issue only in dynamic situations, like when you move around (or along with) a subject. While shooting a static scene, the concept doesn't make much sense, it is you who adapts to the environment.

I for one don't like light, "plastic feeling" cameras. I loved using the Nikon F3 and predecessors, which weighed ~750g for the bodies, no motor attached.

The D3 does seem heavy, though, with its 1,240g (bare naked).

 
At 12 Jan 2008, 19:24:00, Anonymous ttl said...

"I'm familiar with them, and as a street photographer, I really don't like the weight and the size."

You don't understand. The camera needs to be so huge, ugly and intimidating that people you come across on the streets are scared shitless when you pull it out. For this makes them freeze on the spot long enough for you to select your lens and adjust the settings on the camera to get a good intruding shot.

If the shaking of the subject is too much for your camera's auto-focus matrix to keep track of, you can lighten the tension a little by saying something like: "Hey, it's only a camera, I'm not going to taser you."

Yes, your subjects will call the police but an agile professional shootist will already be at the next shooting location by the time they get there. This is what professionalism in street photography is all about.

 
At 13 Jan 2008, 06:04:00, Blogger Pascal [P-04referent] said...

Shooting a bare naked camera, not that's an idea to revolutionize "sexy photography".

"Is my naked Nikkie a beauty, or what?", the technology geek asked. ;-)

"The camera needs to be so huge, ugly and intimidating that people you come across on the streets are scared shitless when you pull it out."

And I thought *I* was gifted for double-entendres! :-D
I'll bow my head in shame and go fasten my raincoat now.

"Yes, your subjects will call the police but an agile professional shootist will already be at the next shooting location by the time they get there."

While you're into being a public menace, why not just wait there and shoot the cops when they arrive? (Don't forget to always shoot yourself in the end.)
You need to think like a ruthless predator, or the other paparazzi will eat you whole between snacks.

Your friendly neighborhood Pascarazzi.

 

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