?: Refurbished Nikon D810 or new Nikon D850

Hello,

New to the forum and looking forward to interacting with you folks.

I have a couple of Nikon bodies that are going on 10 years old now (D3/D300) and Im looking to upgrade to either a D810 or a D850. I mostly shoot portraiture, wildlife and macro with a bit of sports mixed in at times.

Im not in a position to purchase a D850 right now. I would probably have to wait about 6 months. However, I could purchase a refurbished D810 for around $2000. My quandary is that Im struggling with the decision of getting a D810 now or waiting a while to get the D850.

If you were faced with this decision what would you do?

Thanks for your input. Always nice to hear from people who know their photography!

best to you,

Rick
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Comments

  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 2,313Member
    Wait six months and buy new. You have something to shoot in the meantime. If your refresh cycle is ten years, you will want to start with a brand new D850.
  • retreadretread Posts: 403Member
    You are shooting with a D3 & D300. I think you may like a D850 and a D500. The controls are the same or nearly so. I have a D500 and love it. I plan to add a D850 but it will be a year of more before I can do that. I think the wait will be worth it.
  • BVSBVS Posts: 265Member
    edited September 2
    Personally, I'd wait and go with D850.

    D850 has faster fps, deeper buffer, better AF system, better metering sensor (for subject tracking), a bit better high ISO, and higher pixel density (more pixels on target) which will be better for wildlife and sports.

    D850 has auto focus stacking which would be useful for macro.

    Both should be excellent for portraiture.
    Post edited by BVS on
    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 926Member
    Like every body else The D850 would be a sensible choice and prices should have settled by then. However consider that to get the best from the D850 you will need good lenses and a high end computer. Welcome to the never-ending conveyer belt.
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,513Member
    When you keep your cameras long term, always buy new.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    WestEndFoto, retread, BVS, paulr, PB_PM,

    Thank you all so much for the input. Very helpful and you have convinced me to save up and be patient and purchase a D850 in about 6 months.

    After reading your comments it really does make sense. Im a Mac person and Im using a late 2013 MacBook Pro 15" Retina with 16 GB RAM, an i7 and 500 GB SSD. It has been a great machine, but Im wondering how it will hold up with the very large RAW files of the D850 (?)

    The new iMac Pro should be great, but not cheap. Im thinking maybe the new iMac might be a good choice, but thats at least a year or so away for me.

    Best to everyone and thanks again! :)

    Rick

  • vtc2002vtc2002 Posts: 313Member
    @greyhoundrick What lenses do you have? Do you have more FX or DX lenses? I agree with the others about getting the 850 over the 810. You will need some good lenses.
    Your 500 gb hard drive will not be large enough without some type of external storage or using cloud storage such as Flickr. You can use Flickr to share your photos here. External storage solutions can range from $100 to several thousand depending on how much you shoot. Photography Life has a pretty good article on external storage that I would recommend checking out.
  • retreadretread Posts: 403Member
    I am a PC guy. Mine was custom built with a 500gb ssd to do the work. Storage is both in the PC on a 2tb hard drive and external drives. No problem with D500 files an I don't expect any with D850 Files. Slowest thing on this PC is the 8 core processor.

    If the rest of your machine is up to par with the ssd you should have no problems.
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    vtc2002 said:

    @greyhoundrick What lenses do you have? Do you have more FX or DX lenses? I agree with the others about getting the 850 over the 810. You will need some good lenses.

    Your 500 gb hard drive will not be large enough without some type of external storage or using cloud storage such as Flickr. You can use Flickr to share your photos here. External storage solutions can range from $100 to several thousand depending on how much you shoot. Photography Life has a pretty good article on external storage that I would recommend checking out.

    I apologize if this message is double posted.

    Thanks so much for the input! I really appreciate it!

    I have all Nikkor lenses, 50mm f/1.8, 85mm f/1.4, 24-70mm f/2.8, 70-200mm f/2.8 VR version I and a 105mm f/2.8 VR micro lens.

    Thanks again!

    Rick
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    retread said:

    I am a PC guy. Mine was custom built with a 500gb ssd to do the work. Storage is both in the PC on a 2tb hard drive and external drives. No problem with D500 files an I don't expect any with D850 Files. Slowest thing on this PC is the 8 core processor.

    If the rest of your machine is up to par with the ssd you should have no problems.


    Thank you retread! Yes, an external HD along with some cloud storage is a great idea!

    Appreciate your help!

    Rick
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 5,318Moderator
    Your choice of genres demand the D850 really. No doubt at all. The only one you will struggle with is macro in windy conditions (isn't it always windy to some extent when you are shooting macro?). Apart from that it's a no-brainer.
    Always learning.
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 926Member
    Greyhoundrick You will get great advice on this forum, however Do you need all the new technology the D850 offers. Up to a month ago the D810 was the best thing since sliced bread and still is a excellent camera. There are going to be a lot of D810 come on the market, owners are been offered poor prices in part exchange. In the uk they range from £1000 to £1500 from dealers. You could buy a low mileage D810 and a very high end lens and still pay less than D850, Only you can make that decision .
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    Thank you very much spraynpray and paulr.

    Excellent points and I will definitely take them both into consideration.

    Also, if you add the grip, D5 battery and charger to the D850 it adds another $1000 I think. Something to contemplate for sure! :-)

    Thanks again!

    Rick
  • kanuckkanuck Posts: 1,234Member
    edited September 19
    I agree with Westendphoto and others that you probably should wait 6 more months and buy a new D850. The bugs, shipping and prices will be sorted by then so its perfect for you actually. Paulr is right too though in that the jump in technology from the 2006/2007 technology to now will be a big change and one that you might possibly not need. You should try and shoot both the D810 and D850 in a shop and do a bit more digging around before making your final decision. Both bodies will most certainly make you happy. Perhaps a Christmas purchase? :)
    Post edited by kanuck on
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 704Member
    edited September 20
    I now have the entire D8x series; D800, D810, as well as the D850.

    The D810 was an improvement on the D800, but the D850 is a significant improvement on the D810. The handling is better, the buttons are more logically placed, the speed, the sensor, the ISO, the WiFi/BT, and I could go on. Even the sound is better:)

    So, if you can, don't walk, but run out to get the D850 - you'll be happy you did.
    Post edited by Killerbob on
  • AbhinavAbhinav Posts: 44Member
    Getting D850 makes more sense over D810 any day unless you're getting some real special deal on D810 .. I would suggest you a D850 .
  • decentristdecentrist Posts: 21Member
    You don't need a D850, and the D750 is a big leap forward from the D3 in image quality. Buy a D750 for a third the price of a D850, and you won't need to change your pc or storage capability. The D810 is not a good all round camera. Don't listen to these gearheads.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,513Member
    edited September 27
    My primary advice is to buy new, not refurbished, for long term ownership. But beyond that, what camera you pick will depend on how you want to use the camera. If you want high resolution, and a fast shooting speed in one camera, the D850 wins hands down. If all you want is a general purpose camera that will do a good job overall, the D750 or D810 would be good choices.

    That said, an owner of a D750 (for 2 1/2 years), I'll challenge the above advice. It's not about being a gear head, it's about considering at how the user uses the camera. For someone who uses the same camera for 10 years, like the OP, get the best you can afford; when you keep a tool that long, make sure you get something that will do all the things you want, or need, it to do.

    Why else? Computer processing speed and disk space are non issues. Computers need to be upgraded over time, for more than just photo editing reasons reasons. Older machines stuck on old OS's fall into traps, like not having modern security updates, which can be a big issue for the end user, even if they don't know it yet. That alone makes upgrading on a 5-8 year cycle worth while, because when it comes to computers, upgrades are just inevitable. Secondly, storage is honestly rather cheap per GB as long as you use mechanical drives for storage, and an SSD as a a boot/working disk.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    Thank you so much kanuck, Killerbob, Abhinav, decentrist and PB_PM. Your comments are all taken with utmost respect. I have to say that Im leaning now towards purchasing the D850.

    On a side note and please excuse my going a bit OT.....

    What do you think about the recent tests on the auto focusing capabilities of the D5 vs. the D850? Matt Granger's test on YouTube shows that in 3D Focus Tracking Mode that the D5's hit rate was near 100% while the D850's was about 60% even though they have the same auto focus system.

    It brings up more questions however:

    1. Since no grip was on the D850 w/a D5 type battery did that give a true representation of the D850?

    2. How would the D850 do in crop mode with respect to AF vs. the D5?

    3. On a personal note, how would the D850 match up vs. the D3 in AF abilities?

    Lots to think about. Let me know what you think!

    best to all,

    Rick
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,513Member
    edited September 29
    The D3 had a very good AF system for the time, I had a D700, with the same AF modal, but it was clear that the D3 was faster and more accurate with focusing. Now once you put the grip on the D700, it did get closer (shorter blackout times), but the D3 was still just that little better.

    The newer bodies are simply much faster, and more accurate than the D3 by virtue of improved AF algorithms, higher resolution AF sensors, and more focus points (which is important with 3D colour tracking).

    Haven't touched a D850, but if past experience holds true, the D5 will beat the D850 for AF in high speed shooting situations. Some of the D850 AF issues could easily be marked down to early software that still needs some debugging, while others might simply come down to the tuning of the cameras. Each Nikon camera I've own, even in the same generation at different price points, had slightly different characteristic.

    For all we know Matt's test results are due to a ever so slightly misaligned AF sensor. Without extensive scientific tests, and a larger sample of camera bodies, it would be impossible to say what the real issue is.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member
    Great info. PB_PM! Thank you for the post.

    Yesterday I saw a real world review of the D850 by Jared Polin (Fro Knows Photo) on YouTube where he tested the D850 at a moto cross event. He had subjects coming straight at him and also across the viewfinder.

    It looks like his results were excellent. I think in one sequence he "hit" 17 out of 19 shots with the motorcycle coming directly at him.

    He did not get those results while using 3D Focus Tracking as he also feels that it is not the most reliable of settings.

    On a side note...Is the D850 in crop mode exactly like the D500 in terms of pixels and applicable sensor area?

    Thanks again for the excellent information!

    best,

    Rick
  • jstevensphotojstevensphoto Posts: 2Member
    I have a D700 and D800 and just ordered a D850. I think you would regret buying a refurb D810. My experience in buying new gear is: Do I really need it? Probably not. Do I want it for my hobby? Yep.
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member

    I have a D700 and D800 and just ordered a D850. I think you would regret buying a refurb D810. My experience in buying new gear is: Do I really need it? Probably not. Do I want it for my hobby? Yep.

    So true jstevensphoto! Ive ordered a D850 and my credit card sighed lol.....

  • AbhinavAbhinav Posts: 44Member

    I have a D700 and D800 and just ordered a D850. I think you would regret buying a refurb D810. My experience in buying new gear is: Do I really need it? Probably not. Do I want it for my hobby? Yep.

    So true jstevensphoto! Ive ordered a D850 and my credit card sighed lol.....

    congrats
    :)
  • greyhoundrickgreyhoundrick Posts: 17Member

    congrats
    :)

    thank you so much Abhinav! I appreciate it! Looking forward to interacting with you again soon!

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