Photography News Issue 49

Camera test 38

Photography News | Issue 49 |

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Performance: Raw size options

Original image


Features  24/25 High pixel count, an AF system from the D5, 4k video and somuchmore Performance  24/25 Great image quality, capable at high ISOs considering its high resolution Handling 24/25 It feels so ‘right’ in the hands and a pleasure to use Value formoney 24/25 It’s serious amount of money but you get a seriously good DSLR Overall 96/100 It’s been a while but the D850 has been worth the wait Pros Highmegapixel count, image quality, electronic shutter, focus shift feature, tiltable touchmonitor Cons Needs XQD cards for fastest performance, touch AF canmiss Images I shot a wide range of images for this test of the D850 with a variety of lenses. Far left In good light with the camera tripod mounted you get awesome amounts of detail. In this case, a Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 which shows that the D850 works fine with less expensive optics. Near left This was a handheld night shot taken with a 24-70mm f/2.8 wide open at 1/50sec. ISO 12,800 was set and while noise is very evident the handling of the extreme dynamic range and depth of blacks was impressive. Has the D850 been worth waiting for? Should D800/D810 owners upgrade? Will it appeal to D5 users? Is the D850 the ultimate all-round Nikon DSLR? Is it worth the money? As with any significant new product, there are more questions than answers but the D850 is without doubt a deeply impressive and hugely capable DSLR; and so it should be at £3499 body only. For existing Nikon owners, the question is whether the upgrade cost is worthwhile. In all honesty, and it is just an opinion, but assuming you have the money, the D850 does offer benefits over the D800/D810, in respect of ultimate image quality, performance and features. I’ve been lucky enough to spend a few intensive days with the D850 and I found it an inspiring camera to use. I know that I do not need such a high resolution camera (nor do most photographers) and I already happily make A2 prints from cameras with significantly fewer pixels but the D850 is without doubt a class act and large prints made from its files do sing. Buy a D850 and you are in for a seriously exciting ride. Enjoy it.

Large Raw


Small Raw

Images Available light was used for this shot that was taken on a Nikon D850 fitted with a 50mm f/1.4 lens. The model was professional model Em Theresa, and the shot was taken at the Natural Light Spaces,

no noise reduction or any extra sharpening and then compared the shots on-screen. I started with the L Raw at 100%, the S Raw at 200% and the M Raw at 133% to give the same image size and the differences are clear, but this is no more than you would expect

The Nikon D850 joins a select few digital cameras to offer the option of smaller Raws when the flexibility of that format is needed but without the camera’s full resolution. The D850 offers small and medium Raws giving file sizes of 4128x2752pixels and

6192x4128pixels respectively which compares with the 8256x5504pixels of full-size Raws. Expressed simply, S Raws are half and M Raws are three-quarters the size of L Raws. I shot sets of ISO images using each Raw size, processed them through Adobe Camera Raw with

and of course this is not the point of having smaller Raws. View the S Raw at 100% with the MRawat 75%and LRawat 50%and the differences, while still present, are minor. So if you want the benefits of Raw you can without going all the way.

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