The first is the 24mm wide view from where I was standing (not very sharp ), the second is with my 70-200mm f2.8 at 200mm of the top of The Shard (310m tall) - cropped down to show the visitor's gallery.
When the D800 was announced, several images by Steve Simon were in display at the Nikon Corp site. I remember one from a beach in Cuba at sunset. I could crop 7 different images from a single frame with outstanding detail, as if shot individually. Absolutely remarkable. Congratulations.
Hi Geoff, I just got a D800, upgrade from D700. I shoot moving objects most of the time, birds, planes, cars, etc. (RAW 14 uncompressed) I took this shot of a Great Egret as a test. I shoot this all the time with the D700 at the same settings and get "keepers" I don't consider this a "keeper" Is it noise or the lens in your opinion? I have been told that I need better glass, i.e. f/2.8, with this camera if I want acceptable results. Cheers, David Visit My Nikonians Gallery. D800, Sigma 150-500DG@500mm, f/8, 1/1600, ISO5000, EV-.3, CWA, handheld, no crop.
I suspect that it's a combination of both (though I have no knowledge of the Sigma lens).
You don't say whether you had sharpened or cleaned up the image at all: I gave it a few tweaks in Lightroom and it certainly looks cleaner now...a better result should be obtainable from the original image.
Given that you were at ISO 5000 and 500mm I think it's a pretty good result, and I'd expect to see some noise, but largely removeable in post-processing.
If you spend a serious amount of money on a better lens - 500mm at f2.8? (wow!) - I'd want to see an improvement in quality, but primarily by using the wider aperture with a lower ISO.
This egret image is a bit underexposed and the flat light / low contrast make it seem less sharp. You also have noticeable motion blur in the image. We assume that 1/1600s should be fast enough to freeze any motion but those wings can move pretty fast.
You will also see a difference if you give the lens some support at 500mm. Just leaning against a solid object when you shoot can help.
Some of you may remember my story a year or so ago. I was photographing an anvil cloud and later in postprocessing saw a white dot in the photo. I enlarged the dot and this is what I found. Two donkeys in the woods!
I agree with you about the AMAZING resolution.
============================================== Darrell Young (DigitalDarrell) www.pictureandpen.com "Better too many words than not enough understanding." ==============================================