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8fps shooting reality vs. p.423 of the manual

head4heights

Woking, UK
21 posts

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head4heights Silver Member Nikonian since 13th May 2012
Sun 05-Aug-12 06:38 PM

With the MB-10 bolted on the ol' D700 will shoot at a half decent frame rate. 8fps allegedly. I would have imagined that shooting RAW would be "easier", as in require less processing, than any other format that requires compression, such as JPEG. The reason JPEGs are smaller is because they are compressed. It must take a few more CPU cycles to compress it, but it doesn't appear to be significant. I digress.

Looking at the manual, p.423, there is a table that is most interesting - there is a buffer limit for the number of frames I can shoot before it stops, as in click,click,click...... click...... click. It gets busy writing stuff to the CF card I assume and the fps drops to less than I could do manually.

My assumption is that the bottleneck that precludes me from shooting more than 17 uncompressed FX 14bit NEFs at 8 frames a second is the buffer size being too small for the CF card's low speed. The buffer is of finite size and the CF card can only be written to at a finite speed. I know the CF cards speed at c.90MB/s, but I can't find a figure in the manual for the buffer size.

Quite how the D700 goes about moving the frame to the CF card and when is a moot point. If it did it immediately the frame was taken, then the only limit for the number of frames for the JPEG formats would be the CF card capacity. But it doesn't.

How big is the buffer then?? Simple sum probably, multiply the buffer capacity by the file size for the various picture formats? Nope! The results are all over the shop. The largest requirement being 610MB (for large format TIFFs, 17 frames @35.9MB each).

The Olympian road race cyclists came within an easy dog walk of my house and so armed with the D700 I set off. According to the manual, I should be able to shoot 100 frames in JPEG at 8fps. 100 frames would last just over 12 seconds of shooting.

But it didn't.
I got 15 frames rattled off before it... started... to.... pause.... which was most annoying. Should have tested it first!

On getting back I felt a little better because nothing I did would persuade the camera to take anything more than 22 frames before it hesitated. Even uncompressed NEF FX 14bit NEFs bottomed out at 14.

I'm not doing something right and I'm beggered if I can see what. Is the table on p.423 a work of theoretical fiction? Has anyone every managed to take 100 shots at CH without... the... hes..it..tat..ion??
If so how???????

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