Well today, I brought home a new member of my family. I'm now the owner of a Nikon D600 FX DSLR. I've been shooting Nikon since I was a wee lad, but other than 35mm film, this is my first full frame, "FX" DSLR.
I really like shooting with a cropped, "DX", sensor and is part of my muscle memory. I've used a Nikon D100, D200 and now my trusty Nikon D300s. Love 'em. I've gotten used to the 1.5x (approximate) cropped factor from my Nikkor lenses. However, at the same time I've started to find that it's a drawback in the studio. Also, for street photography I like the shorter focal length and my 50mm is a bit too long for this use, so I have to use a 35mm.
|The Real Thing|
It was only a matter of time before I bought a full frame sensor. It wasn't a question of if, but what type of DSLR. Obviously, I wanted to stick to Nikon primarily because I have a full range of Nikkor and Tokina lenses. I researched the Nikon D4, D3s, D3x, & D800. I even looked at an older Nikon D700. Finally, the D600 soon after it was introduced.
Look, I don't make my living as a photographer, so I couldn't justify spending the $$$ for any of the big 3: D4, D3s & D3x. I liked everything about the D800 ergonomically, but I really didn't need the 36.3 megapixels nor did I want to spend the $2,999 (more or less). Finally, the D700 was tempting. The price was perfect, but it doesn't have video. The D600 fit the bill for me.
The D600 came in at $2,099 without a lens (didn't need one), has a solid 24.3 megapixel (twice what I get from my D300s), excellent ISO range, a compact ergonomic design, AND it's an FX body. The big challenge for me is the feature layout. The layout is more like a Nikon D7000 versus the D700 / D800. I'm really comfortable with the button and control layout of my D300s. It's going to take me awhile to figure out how to change ISO, speed, AF zones, etc. Minor inconvenience. I will hang onto my D300s as a backup and for the cropped factor (although it's getting well past it's "used by" date in terms of the number of shutter activations I've put through it). I'll have to become bi-lingual in camera layout.
One thing I'm interested in testing is how my lenses respond on the full frame. I know they will work perfecto, but more along the lines of how my lens selection will change using a full frame. It will be fun using my 50mm as a real 50mm. Same goes for my AF-S 24-70mm f/2.8, AF-S 70-200mm f/2.8, etc.
I will give the D600 a go this week and upcoming weekend. I probably won't post a review because there are so many already out there. However, if you are so inclined her are the D600 specs. OK, so where did I leave that manual, I've got some reading to do!! In closing I want to give props to Roberts Camera's north store. They are always easy to work with, don't try to up-sell when it's not wanted or needed, and they have competitive prices.