>I read an awful lot on this forum about how hard it is to take >sharp photos with my new camera, and am wondering what I am >missing.
It's about expectations. People go from 12mp to 36mp and expect some dramatic change in their image. There are dramatic changes, but if you get your expectations set incorrectly you get disappointed.
So someone with shutter speed and technique suitable to get good sharp shots viewed at 100% on a D300 takes a D800, uses the same setup, zooms in to 100% and -- soft. How did that happen (he asks?), must be a defective camera, since I KNOW I take sharp pictures on my D300 (he says).
But you've got 3x the pixels, so effectively you just zoomed about 2-3x as far in, and now any motion blur is amplified that much.
Zoomed to the same field of view, with the same technique and lens, the D800 delivers the same or better image. It just lets you zoom in further and dissect your technique and look for flaws at a whole new level. If you do that, you can either then conclude "it's hard to get good shots" or conclude "here is a tool I can use to get better". Or just don't zoom in to the pixel level and be happy the way you intend others to view your images.
It's all about reasonable expectations. Expect more resolving power. Don't expect the camera to manufacture steadiness, or improve your lens, or make moving subjects be more still, and you will love it.