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05-14-2012, 07:57 PM - 2 Likes   #1
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D800E vs Pentax 645D Video with Nick Devlin

Hey everyone,

I just finished cutting this video with Nick Devlin of The Luminous Landscape and Chris Niccolls of The Camera Store TV comparing the D800E to the Pentax 645D. I'd love to hear some feedback from the Pentaxians on this forum.



05-15-2012, 12:01 AM   #2
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Nice video. Did you notice the forward leaning tripod with the D645 aimed downward toward the stream? Perhaps not off-balance enough to cause a fall, but definitely not the most stable set up for maximizing resolution.
05-15-2012, 02:13 AM   #3
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It sounds more informative than it actually is. The comparison consisted mostly of talk. The strengths of the Pentax are not demonstrated, although they sometimes say it's a nice camera to hold. You do not see tonality comparisons. The photos from the 645D did not look well done anyway and that lack of sharpness is a bit odd. That said, the 800E looks like a really great camera. Its comparison with the Hasselblad was more informative, although in both these videos I get the feeling that I'm looking at an ad. It is funny to see studio photographers in control of everything overexposing on purpose to demonstrate the Nikon's capabilities which they would not need.

EDIT: "ad" is the wrong choice of word here. I do not mean it was an add for Nikon. What I mean is that it is not looking for the right camera for the right job, but contrasting features, whether or not you actually need them,and which makes it sound all a bit ad-like. That was particularly clear in the Hasselblad comparison.

Last edited by Smolk; 05-21-2012 at 09:46 AM.
05-15-2012, 10:18 AM   #4
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I agree with you Smolk.
It is a nice initiative, but i find the results presented in a kind of skewed manner, and as far as image quality is concerned i am affraid the conclusions can be a bit misleading.
The D800E shots are almost all the time getting more artistic value in framing/composition, better colour rendering and better dynamics, wich i think as a lot more to do with photograph's hability/practise than with camera's compared capabilities in terms of pure IQ.
Nothing such as bokeh and depht of field is compared, the 645D lenses dont wear their hoods, which can be a problem as far as flare is concerned (even with grey weather)... aso.
IQ set appart, the informative conclusion stays largely in favour of the D800E as far as price of the body is lonely considered, as well as lens potential/diversity, which are facts ; but everyone's ad hoc choice would better take into account the global package, which i find not complete enough in this clip.


Last edited by Zygonyx; 05-15-2012 at 10:24 AM.
05-15-2012, 10:22 AM   #5
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Good. I would say you tested them both closer to where their home is than trying to make the D800 work as a studio camera. But as is said it is a lot of talk. You can't tell anything from image quality when looking at pictures in a video it is purely your word on it there.

From what I have heard on build quality the D800 is lower than the D3x. I rented a D3x prior to buying the 645D and can say that they were very close. The slight bit of extra heft for the 645D might have made it seem a bit better build. The ergonomics and user interface on the 645D was much better than the D3x and I bet it is the same on the D800. Not much talk on this only a slight mention from Nick that he never touched the user manual on the 645D.

All in all though you would have to be an idiot to argue that the D800E is not a fantastic bargain in comparison. I think it comes down to if you use the camera full time which one works for you, which one inspires you, which one does what you want. That is why I choose the 645D because I did not need all 40MP it gave but I found medium format to inspire my landscapes more than the 35mm (do it all) D3x.

I can't imagine it as an add to sell D800's instead of 645D's but it did kind of sound like that. I am sure you would make much more profit selling the same number of 645D's as D800's...
Edit: Yeah, watched it again. It came across this way the first time but the second time it didn't...

So for a hobbiest looking to choose a camera I think you hit it by explaining that it can be on par with medium format and they don't need another house mortgage if they want 36MP. For somebody where the camera has to work for them I think you missed it (the usability, format, style, etc.). But I wouldn't choose a camera from a video review. Thats why I rented the two options available when I was making the decision. The cost wasn't the deciding factor because between the two if my images take a drop from using the 35mm format then well that is something I couldn't live with.

Last edited by atlnq9; 05-16-2012 at 09:43 AM.
05-16-2012, 02:05 AM   #6
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I just watched the video and I should humbly submit to the court that I did not find anything remotely advertising or promoting for Nikon. In fact, it is a great video and I would recommend it to anyone. At the end certain good words were said out loud for Pentax and similar amount for Nikon. Obviously Nikon costs a fraction of Pentax and the lens availability cannot be possibly compared. That's fact of life, so indeed, people may switch from Pentax 645D to Nikon D800(e) but evidently not because of this video.

So, I quite liked the video. Both cameras are state of the art, amazing, marvelous photographic tools. This is my personal conclusion from watching this video. Your mileage may not be congruent to mine...
05-16-2012, 04:37 AM   #7
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Entertaining video, but little information for someone considering the 645 25mm vs a D800E and Zeiss 21mm. The video comparing the Hasselblad was more informative. Comparison of actual prints might have been useful. Chris seems like a nice guy, Nick a little less so.
05-16-2012, 09:37 AM   #8
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Not a lot of information. You seem to make claims, but you don't bother trying to support them. I am not sure what this video actually says but both cameras are nice.

A few odd choices:

The Pentax 25mm is equivalent to a 19mm on a 35mm, so the comparison to the Zeiss 18mm would have been closer than a 21mm.

Why criticize a format--you either like it or you don't. Especially since the "damning" fact is apparently it is 1930s technology--the 4:3 format is older (you have heard of the European 9x12 format cameras).

05-16-2012, 10:12 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Yamanobori Quote
Why criticize a format--you either like it or you don't. Especially since the "damning" fact is apparently it is 1930s technology--the 4:3 format is older (you have heard of the European 9x12 format cameras).
The golden rectangle is thousands of years old, but not obsolete.

05-16-2012, 10:16 AM   #10
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The format was an unexpected but pleasant surprise when I moved to the 645 film camera.
So much so that I later tried 6x7, and now moved to 6x6.
It may not be the renaissance ideal, square, but it has something going for it.
05-16-2012, 10:24 AM   #11
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Format is one of the most underestimate qualities when choosing a camera.
05-16-2012, 02:25 PM   #12
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Yes, but on another hand, the more megapixels, the more crop freedom especially when having 40K resolution sensors ...
05-19-2012, 02:54 AM   #13
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User Manual

ATLNQ said ' Not much talk on this only a slight mention from Nick that he never touched the user manual on the 645D'.

I'm just checking but there isn't an on camera user manual on the 645D is there? I've not missed having one, but not seen one either. Nikon cameras usually have a Help button I think, so presumably the 800E effectively has this feature.

Having said the above I've not needed the manual with the 645D. The UK cameras don't come with the pocket manual, so I packed the full manual in my backpack in the first few weeks then thought what's the point, I never use it! I do have an emergency PDF one on my iPhone though.

What I like about the 645D is the ergonomics, and in particular it's the first camera I've found that I can control entirely with gloves on in the cold! The viewfinder is also superb.

Having said that, If I hadn't bought the 645D last year and the 800E was available, I would personally have opted for the 800E on economic grounds alone. Now I have the 645D there's no point thinking along those lines. Changing is pointless as the end financial result would probably be a straight swap at best (taking lenses into account), and the 645D does all I need and more, and for my photography (landscape) probably does it a little better.

Funnily enough my main concern when I bought the 645 was that the cost would make me too precious to use it a lot, but that's not been the case - it's jolted me into getting my money's worth and use it probably twice as much as the 5DII.

Initially I missed the Canon 24mm TSE lens (truly superb) but now I have a 35mm A lens I don't even miss that!






05-19-2012, 06:08 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Newmoon Quote
ATLNQ said ' Not much talk on this only a slight mention from Nick that he never touched the user manual on the 645D'. I'm just checking but there isn't an on camera user manual on the 645D is there? I've not missed having one, but not seen one either. Nikon cameras usually have a Help button I think, so presumably the 800E effectively has this feature. Having said the above I've not needed the manual with the 645D. The UK cameras don't come with the pocket manual, so I packed the full manual in my backpack in the first few weeks then thought what's the point, I never use it! I do have an emergency PDF one on my iPhone though.
Sorry you interpreted my comment to mean the 645D had a built in users manual. I meant real user manual. The user interface being so great you don't need the manual really once you get your settings programmed like you want them. That is what is great; a programed help section would likely never be needed because the user interface is amazing.

I must say though I am surprised that there was no mention about the better DOF control with the D800 in the video. With the smaller sensor combined with the selection of tilt shift lenses it is one area where for landscape the D800 has an advantage... Except I would rather have the Canon tilt shift lenses on the Nikon.
05-19-2012, 12:04 PM   #15
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There were some 100% crop comparisons...overall conclusion is still that the D800e is a bargain, but the cost of older Pentax lenses vs. the latest Nikon lenses has to be mentioned. The 645D can be used w/ relatively inexpensive manual focus lenses but for the D800e to work well, it needs the latest most expensive lenses so system cost is a worthwhile comparison. The 645D is also using a relatively ancient sensor...the next version should use at least a 60MP sensor I'd hope.
Still, different tools for different folks...
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