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Nikon D800E vs Canon 5D Mark III vs Leica M9

Added to my review of the Nikon D800/D800E is a new comparison between the Nikon D800E, the Canon 5D Mark III, and the Leica M9.

I’m getting antsy for some outdoor shooting soon.

Part of the test scene for D800E vs Canon 5D Mark III vs Leica M9

Reader comments

Dan M writes:

The doll image comparisons with the D800E vs the Canon 5D Mark III vs the Leica 9 may be the single most impressive and valuable work I've seen you do, and you've done some great stuff. The face and blue robe comparisons are stunning. I wouldn't want to be a Leica M9 owner viewing that part of DAP.

That D800E doll comparison in DAP brings me into the diglloyd camp for dreaming of the 48-60mp D4x. I suspect your reviews alone will jack up the sales of the D800E by several percentage points in the U.S. The big take away from your D800/800E work so far is that it's not just resolution, it's all about tones and transitions. When you first said as much, I thought, well, Lloyd is going dreamy on us again, talking like a wine connoisseur, "a fine transition, with a touch of berry and just a hint of the oak."

No, man, you meant it. It requires audio, the sound of your fist hitting the table.

It's so stunning I would almost take out the option of stringing out all three versions below the mouse over window; the viewer's eye needs to see the beautiful transition of the "blue robe" fabric get very weak when the mouse hits the 5D MarkIII button and completely fall apart when it hits the Leica M9 button. The Miss Binoculars shot is so revealing as to be disturbing: the smooth transition of the doll's rosy cheeks just falls apart when you leave the D800E version and move to the other cameras. The structure of the surface of the cheeks completely changes to a choppy "guess" at what's there. We've entered a whole new digital world here.

I was worried about doing my archival photos of anything with fabrics with the D800E. My worries are greatly diminished now.

Anyone who sees those doll shot comparisons in DAP has an enormous advantage over the rest of the crowd. Just two shots, the Miss Binoculars and the Blue Robe, take me farther than all other reviews I've seen on the D800E. Damned fine work there, White Mountain Guru.

DIGLLOYD: High megapixel counts are about total image quality, making all sorts of “digitalness” go away, and when that is coupled to increased resolution (even if not the theoretical potential gains due to lens limitations and focus), the benefits are legion. This is why I wrote about a 58-megapixel Nikon D4x; it is my firm belief that the higher the resolution, the better the image, assuming mediocre sensor technology is not rushed to market. I fully expect to see 100+ megapixel full-frame DSLRs within a few years. And I don’t expect Canon to sit around playing 2nd fiddle on resolution in a full-frame DSLR.

Herb S writes:

Making real images like you do is the only way to go to make things clear in the complex world of digital imaging.

And to do this as clear and constructive as you do is a rare occurrence on the net.
So keep going Lloyd.

DIGLLOYD: Thank you.

Miguel B writes:

This comparison is amazing. In some of the images I see more moire and color aliasing in the mk3 than in the D800E!

DIGLLOYD: Yup.


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