Nikon D850 Review

Nikon D850 Review

Nikon D850 Review

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A Great Action Camera

/ Categories: My Reviews

Is the D850 still a contender in the emerging world of mirrorless cameras? Yes, The D850 is a Nikon flagship camera and has a solid reputation for performance and durability. Match the D850 with the abundance of Nikon's finest f mount lenses available and still being produced what you have is one serious DSLR camera, especially for sports, Weddings, and fast-moving action.

You may have happened across this review summary about the Nikon D850 due to your quest to make a sound decision about buying a D850 or even the Nikon Z7 or possibly a Sony mirrorless camera. 

The Nikon D850 compared to a Nikon Z7 Mirrorless is like comparing apples to oranges. Both the Z7 and D850 have their Pros and also their Cons. The biggest advantage of the Nikon D850 over the Nikon Z7 is action photography and a very wide assortment of lenses from Nikon and 3rd party. The D850 uses the traditional Optical Viewfinder that allows the photographer to look through the lens in real-time without lag, what you see when you press the shutter is what you get. while the Nikon Z7 uses an Electronic Viewfinder which requires the sensor to translate the image the lens is seeing and send it to a small electronic display in the EVF. If it is not obvious the EVF depends on the camera processor and this induces lag - what you see is in the past a few milliseconds. Milliseconds don't sound like much but when shooting high-speed shutters for fast action the subject is slowly gaining on the sensor/processor to keep up.

Over the years the Nikon D850 has been my go-to camera for fast action photography when you absolutely need the very best in class for accurate dependable focus I reach for the D850. I do a lot of bird photography - small things moving fast and with the D850 attached to my super-telephoto - I bring home more useable shots than any full-frame camera I own or have ever used to include the Z7.  The only DSLR camera that competes with the D850 is the D5 or the D5005 when a crop camera makes more sense for even further reach using my long Nikon lenses, and if so, I reach for the highly dependable D500.

When my photography outings are for macro, landscape photography I reach for the Nikon Z7.  The Nikon Z7 is far superior to the D850 in many ways, offering a light compact size, better image resolution, highly customizable menus to adapt to your photography style, and like the D850 has a top-notch weatherproof design. The Nikon Z7 is a pleasure to use with all the advanced technology built into the LCD, EVF, and instant access to your customizable i menu. You almost literally never need to remove your eye from the viewfinder to access and change settings.  After using a mirrorless for the first time - you most likely will not want to go back to old DSLR days.

As Nikon slowly shifts away from DSLRs with advancements in Nikon's Mirrorless camera line, the Nikon D850 is still highly sought after, and for good reason especially if you have an inventory of F lenses that support action photography I still highly recommend the Nikon D850. I would even go as far as recommending buying a Nikon Z if budget allows especially if you plan on staying with Nikon. If you need a sports/action/fast-moving photography camera pick up a D850. 

My Review for the Nikon D850:

The Nikon D850 will most likely be Nikon's Last Nikon 8 series the now legendary D850 and what an excellent way to end this line with an excellent example of engineering and workmanship found in the D850. Nikon did a fantastic job making the many enhancements pulled from the D5 and D500, and like many of you, I am glad to see this finally come to fruition.  

Bottom line - In my opinion, the D850 with it's larger resolution FX sensor is a much improved D8 series DSLR camera.

  • Rear lighted buttons and Top buttons are identical, and the front buttons are almost in the same spot.
  • The Nikon D850 has a tilting rear LCD and is touch-sensitive
  • Highly weather and dust resistance for those long days in the rain
  • Ergonomically speaking the D850 is a pleasure to hold and use with its deep textured grip
  • Improved ISO performance (64-25,600) and the autofocus in low light situations
  • High-resolution Full Frame sensor @ 45mp
  • 7 frames per second of continuous shooting (higher buffer)
  • 4K Video @ 3840 x 2160 @ 30/25/24p
  • Dual High-speed card slots, SD and XQD 
  • Larger viewfinder near 1:1
  • New Silent Mode shooting for weddings or other quiet moments
  • Timelapse
  • WiFi and Bluetooth
  • Focus Stacking

My Summary for this camera: 

  • Overall better image quality than previous Nikon FX DSLR Cameras
  • Better low light shooting, the D850 camera will finally motivate you to get me out at night
  • Improved for absolute confidence when shooting sports or other fast action subjects
  • Awesome Macro images due to higher resolution and image stacking

The Nikon D850 is a highly regarded full-frame flagship and is well worth its tag and still holds the crown as king of DSLR.


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