Nikon released an amazing short movie to demonstrate the D800’s video chops. Most Nikon D800 buyers will be ponying up $3,000 primarily for its photo capabilities, but more and more photographers are creating videos for themselves and clients. As you can see in the sample movie, the Nikon D800 doesn’t disappoint and is fully capable of shooting cinema-quality movies.
Photographer Sandro Miller teamed up with Nikon and a full production crew to produce “Joy Ride,” a five-minute film that follows a mysterious motorcyclist through a seedy nighttime cityscape. Dozens of shots of vehicles, people and landscapes are woven together, most of which were taken in low-light conditions. If you were worried about shooting with the Nikon D800 once the sun goes down…don’t. With the proper lenses and techniques, the D800 appears to be more than capable of handling almost any lighting situation.
One early criticism is that the D800’s sensor and relatively narrow ISO range (compared to the D4) would limit night shooting. This video shows that the Nikon D800 will serve you just fine unless you’re shooting in near complete darkness. The Nikon D800 has an ISO range of 100-6400, which is expandable to 25,600. Of course some photographers will lust after the Nikon D4, but that camera is double the price and overkill for most enthusiasts and some professionals.
Nikon’s new D800 is making quite a splash in the camera and tech communities with good reason. The Nikon D800 is similar in size and price to the D700, a camera that’s over three years old. Until now, Nikon users that wanted to shoot video either had to upgrade to one of Nikon’s top-of -the-line D3 or D4 series cameras or pick up consumer-grade Nikon with a DX sensor, such as the D5100 or D7000. The Nikon D800 slides in between the consumer Nikons and the D4, offering a full FX sensor and many of the pro features found on the D4. It’s loaded with a 36.4 megapixel sensor for snapping pictures and 1080p video.
While this Nikon D800 sample video is certainly inspirational, don’t expect to get similar results unless you have the budget to go out and hire professional actors and production crew. You don’t have to go any further than the above video or the credits to get a sense of what it takes to make a film that’s as high quality as this, not to mention the range of lenses to capture the varied shots. If you’re starting fresh with DSLRs you’ll need to budget a few thousand dollars to properly outfit the Nikon D800 with lenses, strobes and other accessories. If you want to replicate all the gear used in the D800 sample video, you’re going to need to crack open a very large piggy bank.
The Nikon D800 is available for pre-order at Amazon.com for $2,999, with early orders scheduled to ship mid-March. Nikon is also offering up the Nikon D800E for $3,299. The Nikon D800E is virtually identical to the D800, except that it doesn’t employ an anti-aliasing filter, which means fine details will be sharper. Most users will be better suited with the Nikon D800 since the lack of a anti-aliasing filter means photographers will have to deal with undesirable moire´ effects in post production.
The Nikon D800 might sound expensive compared to point-and-shoot cameras or simply shooting with an iPhone, but this is a camera that’s worth every penny, especially for those that get paid to shoot. Those who are just getting started with DSLRs or are not sure if they need everything the Nikon D800 has to offer would likely be better-suited by starting off with a more affordable option, such as the Nikon D5100 and upgrading to the D800 once they outgrow it.
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