The only minor gripe is that Nikon did not push the resolution to a full HD, especially as Canon already has two top-end models that can shoot in 1080. Nikon’s justification for this is that most videos are for Internet use only, where the lowest resolution is not only sufficient but also more efficient, allowing for smaller files and greater download speeds. Even so, I feel the higher video resolution was expected and many users will feel let down.
Expensive, but undoubtedly a quality piece of kit
What certainly won’t disappoint is the truly amazing battery life of the D3s. From such a fast and powerful DSLR I did not anticipated the efficiency feast of the EN-EL4 battery provided with the camera. Nikon claims you can take 4300 shots per charge. I did not shoot as much as that but I never had to recharge the camera in my two weeks of testing, despite using Live View and Movie mode.
So is the D3s the best full-frame DSLR currently on the market? Well, some photographers may hesitate here. It’s not only the price tag, but its size and weight and – unless you make full use of the increased low-light sensitivity and speed – these factors combined with a complex menu are a lot to reckon with for everyday use. I’ve yet to compare it with its main rival, the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, but I struggle to find anything that I would have wanted improved on the D3s other than the upgrading of the D-Movie to full HD. Indeed, the D3s is as accomplished a pro digital reflex as it comes, and precisely because it’s a professional model, operationally, it won’t suit everybody. ®
Catherine Monfils is a professional photographer specialising in portraiture, lifestyle and fashion.
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I don't understand the wingeing about the video resolution. Who the hell uses a pro DSLR for video anyway? It's like moaning about boot space in a sports car. If you're serious about results, you will of course use the right tool for the job. Nikon should have resisted adding these consumer level features to their pro line - who cares what Canon do.
Agreed on the video...
...but i'd like to add some praise for the quality of the photos, no doubt expected from a pro but they were excellent. It's nice to have someone who clearly knows what they're on about reviewing things on here also!
The Morris Minor shot was stunning!
"Pushing the shutter button and taking the pics" is not the important thing. If it were, the mass upload of out of focus pub shots, depicting the pores in some tedious drunk's nose would be thrilling.
Taking good or interesting pictures is more important, and often requires slightly more than just "pushing the shutter button and taking the pics". Either that, or maybe Henri C-B, Robert Mapplethorpe, William Egglestone, Jane Bown and co are just making a lot of fuss about nothing.
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