Even though we ARE Nikon lovers,we are NOT affiliated with Nikon Corp. in any way.

English German French

Sign up Login
Home Forums Articles Galleries Recent Photos Contest Help Search News Workshops Shop Upgrade Membership Recommended
members
All members Wiki Contests Vouchers Apps Newsletter THE NIKONIAN™ Magazines Podcasts Fundraising

Does D700 Overexpose?

SoCalMan

Bonsall, US
342 posts

Click to send email to this author Click to send private message to this author
SoCalMan Registered since 27th Jun 2006
Tue 16-Jun-09 05:42 PM

First of all, I am aware of the various threads commenting on the D700’s propensity to “over-expose”. On my first exposures with my new D700, I immediately noticed that most appeared noticeably more exposed than similar scenes with my D70, D200s and D300s. Therefore, I embarked on a carefully controlled test. I made several hundred bracketed exposures with a D300 side-by-side with the D700, shooting RAW + JPG fine and Matrix metering, under various conditions. All other variables were made the same. Here are my results:

The D700 exposes consistently about 0.5EV to the right of the D300. In effect, the D700 uses much of the headroom available in typical pictures. Adobe CS3 and NX2 can usually cope with the D700 exposure, but there is little leeway left. With default settings, any overexposure, or any excessive contrast, can lead to at least one blown channel.

Please note. There are clear differences in the RAW interpretation of various converters (NX2 is generally better), but the D700 is clearly exposing more fully than the D300. The basic issue is camera, not software.

I believe Nikon chose this policy to maximize the noise figures for the camera by imposing a rather strict ETTR regimen. The D300 may have been conservatively programmed, but the D700 is definitely aggressive in Matrix mode. Thus, the D700 exposures are “correct”, but aggressive.

Also, it is hard to know exactly, but the D700 Matrix program seems to weight the focus point even more fully than on the D300. Thus, if your focus point is relatively dark, you are more likely to get blown highlights.

To cope with this, I have set the D700 to -0.5EV constant exposure compensation. The shadow noise performance of this camera is nothing short of spectacular; ISO 1600 pictures are essentially noise free. Thus, I can largely avoid blown highlights (which cannot be recovered), at the expense of slightly more shadow noise (which is low to start with, and can be ameliorated with noise processing). This gives an effective dynamic range I have not seen in other cameras.

Overall, my initial impressions of the D700 are of a remarkable camera. It is ruggedly built, extremely ergonomic, very low noise, fast, and sure in focus.

Subject
ID
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
1
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
2
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
3
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
10
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
11
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
17
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
4
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
7
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
5
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
6
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
8
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
9
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
22
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
23
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
12
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
13
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
14
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
15
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
16
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
21
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
18
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
19
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
20
Reply message RE: Apples and oranges
24
Reply message RE: Apples and oranges
25
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
26
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
27
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
28
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
29
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
30
               Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
31
                    Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
32
                    Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
33
                         Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
34
                              Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
35
                    Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
37
                         Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
38
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
36
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
39
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
41
Reply message RE: What about the "obvious" reason?
40
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
42
Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
44
     Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
45
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
46
          Reply message RE: Does D700 Overexpose?
47

G