Yesterday was an odd day. I shot my D600 for the very first time. I had purchased it on Thursday, but had other shoots planned for the weekend that I needed a "sure thing" for. Sunday I was free to experiment a bit.
Frankly, I was shocked at what I got back. I was shooting college volleyball in our notoriously bad gym. Proper exposure is ISO 3200, F2.8, 1/500. I typically shoot 1/640 or 1/800, so I am down a little on exposure. I chose to run the D600 and the D3s and only use the 300/2.8 and the 70-200/2.8
As I looked at both images in post, I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Well, I could, but didn't want to. The D600 was cleaner than the D3s. Twice the megapixels, and cleaner. Oh my.
The grip is not you available for the D600. And even if it was, the camera comes up short in a lot of the same ways the D7000 does. At least for me. It's too small. The pro bodies still snap focus better. The FPS of the pro bodies IS an advantage for shooting some thing. I still prefer to time my shots, but 3 shot bursts are still very helpful at times.
And this leads me to my D400 dilemma. For so long, I have wanted another professional DX camera. I want it in a pro body. I know that probably won't happen. So I thought to myself that it's ok. I'd compromise on the D400 with a DX 24MP sensor. After shooting the D600 this weekend, I am no longer sure. Yes, the crop factor would be VERY helpful. Especially outdoors for field sports. But the trade off is the noise performance indoors. And I am at what I suspect is the same crossroads Nikon found themselves at with the D2x > D3. Whether to push ahead with DX technology, or capitulate and go to FX. And for the first time, I am saying out loud, that I'd be ok with the D400 having the FX sensor in the D600. I'd still buy it. BUT I would only buy it if it brought the rest of the package to the game. Faster focusing, better sized body, etc.