I love my 800E, but am a bit unsure of best way to handle the large files, especially when on an extended photo shoot.
I'm planning to go down to the Bosque del Apache for 10 days in November. I usually shoot ALOT down there, previously with a combination of the D300 and the D7000. I typically load these on to 2 portable drives when down there, deleting the obvious deletables as I go ... and do final cull/edit/processing once I return home. I rarely have the time to go through with a finer tooth comb when I am there, as my typical schedule is up by 4:30 or 5, to bed by 8:30 or 9 (and not even back from shooting til after dark).
This has worked in previous years, but I am anxious to use my D800E while down there, in effect tripling my file size with each shot.
I am curious how others manage this situation.
An associated question is if I crop into the frame (to effectively get "closer" to a bird) is it best to do the crop in PS and delete the extra pixels? I use LR4 and PS at home; Photo Mechanic and PS while away. At home it is easier to archive the original Nef file on an external hard drive in case I ever want to redo the crop, but can't really do that while away for a 10 day shoot ...
I try to carry enough memory cards to avoid having to delete files and reuse the cards. I copy all of my images to a netbook and then back those up to a 500GB portable HD. I have my images in 3 places with that routine. I have found since getting the D800 that I shoot fewer images than I did in the past; probably 50% less. My workflow has slowed down to get the most out of this camera. The wide dynamic range of the raw files is such that I don't need as many exposures when shooting for HDR. Dave Jolley
David Jolley Pickerington, Ohio Please visit my Website
I agree with Dave that the cards are the key to a good workflow with the D800. I have 32GB SD and 32GB CF cards (6 of each). I number them so that I keep the #1 SD and the #1 CF in sync as I save the JPG to the SD and the NEF to the CF. (the NEF if way bigger than the JPG so the CF tends to fill first). I use the SD cards to review my work and cull etc as it is quick to work with JPG files. I also back up to a netbook and an external drive each night and have batch programs that do that transfer for me.
Thanks ... So I will have to order a lot more cards than I already use. If I remember correctly I sometimes have gone through more than 1 32 GB card while down there in a day of heavy shooting, depending on what the birds are doing, etc. I do agree with Dave though. So far I have been shooting a lot fewer images with the D800E ...
Does writing simultaneously to both the CF & the SD slow down the buffer substantially? Shooting birds in flight, etc. the faster the buffer/writing time the better (or at least in my old way of shooting), and I would hate to compromise the already fewer frames per second shooting rate .....
I'm curious -- do you use the Lexar cards? I have always used San Disk ... the one time I used a Lexar high speed card I got a "write error" message (I think I was shooting with my D300 when that happened) in the middle of a shoot. Freaked out, took the card out and luckily could retrieve the photos on my computer.
Beverly I use sandisk extreme pro (both CF and SD) as a tradeoff between cost and performance. I have used lexar in the past and never had a problem with them.
I really find the SD card for JPG and the CF for RAW really speeds up my workflow a lot now (and needing to take less photos with the D800 as everyone has said before).
The cards can get really costly and as I like to have a lot of them I am happy with the Sandisk extreme pro cards. since getting my D800 I have had 2 trips to Europe and 2 to Australia plus all over Canada and they have never let me down with the D800. (As noted in my previous post I number them so I can keep a pair of cards in Sync as the CF card fills quicker than the SD card due to the size of the NEF files. Ray
I like the idea of JPG & RAW to simplify things. When you load the cards what numbering system do you use to simplify matching the 2 file formats after culling? Once you delete the JPGs do you then find the associated RAW file through file numbering, or some other way?
I have the same number on each of the two cards (SD and CF). so when I cull the jpg on the #X card I cull them off the #X CF card by file name. that way they dont get on to my hard disk or backup device as I cull from the cards (while out in the field) I find I will often cull 70% of what I shot that day. I can then use the cards for the following day. If they are near full after culling I put a red sticky on them until I get back or to my computer. When I travel I rarely get near a computer on a daily basis (usually due to time limitations). Hope this helps.
My solution is to carry my laptop in the car. More and more I find using a laptop is beneficial in that the large screen on the back of the D800/e is good but it is always better to see the images on a laptop screen. I carry a small hard drive and save my pictures to that so I do not clog up the laptop hard drive of my laptop. Just to empty two cards generally means I can fill them up again and have the benefit of being able to go back and re-take any images if not quite what I wanted. Sometimes I carry the laptop into the 'field' and that can also be beneficial, but not if I am on a long extended trek. All my shooting is done in RAW, but if speed and storage is a real problem I switch to jpg for such as Motor racing.
I do bring my laptop with me, and have been using it to transfer the images from my cards to a small hard drive ... my concern is that with 10 long days of shooting, the large file size from the 800E will quickly clog my available resources for storing my files, especially as I like to back up on a 2nd small hard drive just in case.
I don't believe there are small portable TB drives yet available!
I have a 1 TB drive that I carry with me and at the end of each day I transfer my cards to both my portable drive and to my home server(synology diskstation). Then if I still have time and energy I log into the diskstation from my laptop and do any edits and refining to the files that are now at home.
When I'm at the Bosque all day for 10 days I do tend to shoot a lot ... There is something happening there all the time ... Blast-offs of snow geese, san hill cranes fighting, sometimes dancing, fly-ins, fly-outs, coyotes out on the prowl or having a snack, other creatures and assorted birds doing their thing.
That was the reason for my original question ... Concerned about having enough storage space while I'm away.
I use a 2 tb at home ... Served me well with the D300 & 7000. I probably need to cull more, but there never seems to be enough time to do more than the basics ...
>I use a 2 tb at home ... Served me well with the D300 & >7000. I probably need to cull more, but there never seems to >be enough time to do more than the basics ...
Since I got the D800 I am a lot more ruthless..uummmm honest about what's good and what isn't. The first time I go through I only check for sharpness if it's not sharp it goes, later when I have time I go back and check if the exposure or composition is good and if it's really worth working with it or not. If I decide not then it goes. Then of course I close bridge and procrastinate on keywording.
For any of you who think someday you might use your images in a digital painting program for fine art, remember this. A slightly soft but otherwise great image can be made sharp or workable when put through one of these digital programs. I'm in the process of going through some of the images I didn't feel were sharp enough for my stock business, and finding they work wonderfully for fine art when put through a process. I deleted a lot of images because of nasty backgrounds when the subject itself was great. Now I can put a texture layer on one of those images, brush out the subject, and have a wonderful fine art image. I wish now I hadn't so ruthlessly deleted some of my images. As it is now, I just delete similars and keep the best of those.
I do tend to agree Betty ... if the image has punch it can often be used as a fine art image ... in fact some of my favorite images were some that I almost deleted because they weren't quite sharp, but decided to work on anyway a bit more creatively. I think perhaps(for me)that's the difference between thinking of what I do as creating a photograph or an image; I do both depending on the circumstance and the type of shoot.
I've been on extended shoots like yours many times. I prefer to handle things this way: 1. I take alot of 16GB cards. I put them in a thinktankphoto card carrier (Pixel Pocket Rocket) facing up right. 2. At the end of the day, I take the card out of the camera and put a new card in. All cards get initialized everytime they go in the camera. If the card just used is full, I put it in the case facing away. If the card is not full, I put it in the case upside down facing me. 3. If I have a computer, I back my files into folders at the end of each day.
I hope this helps. I has helped me tremendously avoid confusion over the years.
I look forward to seeing your pictures (if you care to share). Have a safe trip. ------------- Please visit my galleries: Reza Gorji Photography
Just spent a few days in the Great Bear Rainforest - bears, eagles, whales, misty landscapes and on and on all day long. The most frames in one day was over 800. Sound familiar? I swap CF chips around noon regardless of the number of frames. I take a laptop and, at the end of the day, copy the images to it with software that renames the files (adds the date & time) and deletes them from the chip. I then copy them to 2-1TB portable HDs and remove them from the laptop’s minimal HD. I format the chip when I put it back into the camera. Typically, when I return in the evening I start with downloading one CF chip while I go for dinner and the second after dinner. I start copying the files to one portable and go to bed. If I don’t get up in the night and start the second back-up, I start it copying before I go out the next day. Paranoid? Yep. I don’t know when I’ll be back and, even if I do return, the opportunities will be different.
Re: file size – Compared to the cost of gear and travel, memory is cheap. Adorama has a Western Digital My Passport Essential SE 2TB 2.5" Portable Hard Drive, USB 3.0 for $155. The first thing (well almost the 1st) I did when I got my D800 was add USB3 ports to my work station. The D800 can use USB3 which is maybe 10x faster than USB2. I’m due for a new laptop and will make a point of it having USB3 ports.