It is a given that the 800e is sharper that the 800 and with a lil bit of sharpening the 800 is right there with the D800e. The new body will be primarily 90% for use in the studio shooting senior portraits and for outdoor portrait sessions also. I will use it at times for some personal landscape projects. I may use the video fearure from time to time for little projects but nothing I would charge a client for. I currently use a D3s. ...D800 or D800e?
Sun 17-Feb-13 01:59 AM | edited Sun 17-Feb-13 04:15 AM by Hawk Eyes
The D800E will always be sharper then the D800 even if they both are sharpened in post. Some say you can only tell the difference at 100% or blown up over 20x30+....That is "BS".... For Video the D800 is a better choice because of moire. Either way they both will shoot pro photos with the right hand eye and Technical know how. I shoot with the D800E. There is tons of info on the internet about the two just use google.... or use the search option in the top right corner in this forum where There has been many a conversation on this topic. It all comes down to personal preference and if you are a pixel peeper. Good luck
Sun 17-Feb-13 11:45 AM | edited Sun 17-Feb-13 11:46 AM by NatureDon
Hi Don. Your situation, shooting 90% portraits as a pro with multiple D3S bodies, I don't understand the move to the high pixel sensor (and large files) of the D800 models for your business, although I am not a pro portrait photographer and I certainly don't know your business details. My first thought would be a D4 if you are looking to change, including consideration of occasional personal landscape projects.
If you really want the D800(or E), I would go with the D800. I have owned both, currently the E model. Not enough difference IMO to put up with the increased occurrence of moiré. I do see increased fine feather detail when photographing song birds with the E model; however when everything aligns such that I achieve that extra detail, moiré is frequently there with it...sometimes 50% of photos from a given session with a bird depending on light, the bird, and how close I am (how much detail I am picking out of those feathers)
I am willing to stick with the E model for that extra detail in bird feathers (at least for now), but I would not take that risk if it was my businesss...in that case I would be photographing with the D4.
I have the D800e and I shoot a mixture of portrait and commercial work as well as landscapes. I got the 'E' for the commercial and landscape work mostly and really haven't had a problem with moire. However, if I was doing mostly/only portraits, I would probably go with he straight 800.
With studio lighting you probably give up sharpness intentionally in post more than adding sharpening. If the primary goal was landscape the D800e would be the optimum choice but with 90% studio portraiture, I would stick with the D3s unless printing very large. Either the D800 e or non e would be well suited to printing large portraits. I shoot a mix of subjects with a D800 but for about 1/2 of the subjects, there is no advantage to the D800 over other cameras if the light is decent. But when the light isn't, the added DR, and the D4 and D800 low light focusing are real stand outs. For a business, the answer is simple: does changing increase the net income more than the cost of changing? What you have is beyond suitable for the task of senior portraits. You have the lenses and lighting that could make any camera look great. Stan St Petersburg Russia
Stan raised an interesting question: "does changing increase the net income more than the cost of changing"? If the answer is yes, I would say go for the D800. I have used it in the studio quite a bit and I can say it is a phenomenal camera. However, there a couple of cons to consider. First, the large files came be a pain in the the rear if you don't have the PC/MAC to run it. Secondly, Those 36mps will reveal every imperfection on a individual's face and will require a lot of time to correct. Many can and would argue that the D800/e is too much camera for portraiture work but if that is the case, why does Peter Hurley use medium format regularly for his portraiture work? If you believe the D800 is the tool that can give you an edge, go for it.