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Nikon D300 vs D3

Joseph Ramos

Workshop Member
I was wondering if anyone that has both cameras felt that there was an image quality difference between the two? Thanks


New member
I don't own both, but from what I've read, the consistent answer is the images are indistinguishable up to ISO 800, but up to there the D3 files are more flexible and have more "meat" to them. After 800, the D3 starts to walk away.


Workshop Member
I will agree and disagree with that somewhat.

After 800 the D3 really does start to leave the D300 in the dust.

However even at the lower ISO ranges, the D3 has something different in the files. I would attempt to describe it as more tonal range, and a better rendition of fine detail/textures. I'm not sure that I can really prove it has more dynamic range since I no longer have the D300 for comparison, but the files I'm getting out of the D3 seem to protect the highlights more (without use of D-Lighting).



kit laughlin

Subscriber Member
I second Ray here. I have made ~10,000 images with the D3, and about 3,000 with the D300, all under commercial conditions (rushed, in other words). On the last big shoot I did for John Deere, mostly using the 70–200 VR, and ~800 ISO on the D300, there was a small amount of noise visible at 100%—nothing objectionable, but there. Difficult conditions, lighting-wise (shooting into a forest, sun setting in the BG). But the images from the D3 (same lens but with the 1,4 extender) at between 1600 and 2200 were completely clean. That camera is amazing, for me.

As well, the fact that I always pick up the D3 in preference for some reason is also significant to me, and I feel the ~one stop less DOF that it exhibits compared to the D300 is probably the main reason. The images pop, and I mostly shoot at ƒ2.8–4.