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Nikon D300/D300s high iso noise advice

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    sjportlock
    27 Feb 2011 - 9:51 PM

    Hi everyone,

    I'm a wildlife photographer looking to upgrade my camera body.

    I currently use a Nikon D200, great camera and a total workhorse but the time has come to upgrade.

    I find myself in quite a few low conditions and the beloved D200's high iso noise levels are to noisy for my liking.

    I've read reviews all over the place, i know the D300 is a great camera and very well built for what i need.

    I know how it alls works but i'd like to know what you guys think of the noise levels of ISO 640, 800, 1000 +?


    Your help would be great.

    Cheers

    Steve

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    27 Feb 2011 - 9:51 PM

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    Stuart463
    Stuart463 e2 Member 6551 forum postsStuart463 vcard United Kingdom
    27 Feb 2011 - 10:28 PM

    Hi Steve,

    Like you had a D200 for years but eventually bit the bullet and upgraded to the D300s. Sports photography is my main interest - Cricket in summer and Mens Lacrosse in winter. Throughout the winter months Lacrosse matches face of at 2pm and none of our venues are floodlit so low light is a definite problem. I regularly use a Sigma 120-400 f4.5-5.6 APO to photograph games and therefore upping the ISO is essential. For most of the season I am using ISO between 800 - 1600 on the D300s and I am very satisfied with the results. This shot taken at ISO1600 in order to maintain a reasonable shutter speed although this time I was using a Nikon 70-300 f4.5-5.6 VR lens.

    I don't think you would be disappointed if you do choose to upgrade.

    HTH

    Stuart

    P.S. Welcome to the site.

    User_Removed
    28 Feb 2011 - 12:21 AM

    I use both a Nikon D300 and a Nikon D3s.

    For wildlife photography I tend to use the D300 as the crop factor gives me extra reach with my long focus lenses.

    With the D300 (and the D300s is identical in this respect), I find that ISO 1600 is about as high as I want to go if I am aiming for A3+ prints or competition entries. Above 1600 the noise tends to become noticeable. (But remember that only a few years ago, any ISO abve 200 would have been "noisy" ) .

    In the D3s, ISO 6400 is acceptable but, as I said above, the crop factor of the D300 is a huge bonus when using long focus lenses.

    Hope that helps.

    PS - just won a competition a few weeks ago with a photo of a peregrine falcon "hitting" a pigeon - it was taken with the D300, a Sigma 150-500mm lens, 1/2000th sec at f/8 on ISO 1600. Can't really give you a better recommendation than that.

    Last Modified By User_Removed at 28 Feb 2011 - 12:23 AM
    GazW
    GazW e2 Member 6GazW vcard Wales5 Constructive Critique Points
    28 Feb 2011 - 7:41 AM

    Steve,
    I've just had to look at my camera's tolerance for noise as an exercise in my OCA course and coincidentally it's a D300. The brief results with some examples are in the online log which I have to keep for my tutor and assessors. Note that the examples are in just about the worst possible scenario that I could have chosen.

    I don't think that it's against the T&Cs so it can be found here. My apologies if it is against the T&Cs but if is is deleted then just go to the website in my portfolio and follow the link to the blog

    Having said that I can just agree with the guys above and say that I've had no problems with noise at high ISOs

    Gaz

    sjportlock
    28 Feb 2011 - 8:20 PM


    Quote: I use both a Nikon D300 and a Nikon D3s.

    For wildlife photography I tend to use the D300 as the crop factor gives me extra reach with my long focus lenses.

    With the D300 (and the D300s is identical in this respect), I find that ISO 1600 is about as high as I want to go if I am aiming for A3+ prints or competition entries. Above 1600 the noise tends to become noticeable. (But remember that only a few years ago, any ISO abve 200 would have been "noisy" ) .

    In the D3s, ISO 6400 is acceptable but, as I said above, the crop factor of the D300 is a huge bonus when using long focus lenses.

    Hope that helps.

    PS - just won a competition a few weeks ago with a photo of a peregrine falcon "hitting" a pigeon - it was taken with the D300, a Sigma 150-500mm lens, 1/2000th sec at f/8 on ISO 1600. Can't really give you a better recommendation than that.


    Quote:

    Thats good to hear, and what i want to read! I'd be using it for wildlife 95% of the time.

    Is it possible to see the Peregrine shot?



    Steve,
    I've just had to look at my camera's tolerance for noise as an exercise in my OCA course and coincidentally it's a D300. The brief results with some examples are in the online log which I have to keep for my tutor and assessors. Note that the examples are in just about the worst possible scenario that I could have chosen.

    I don't think that it's against the T&Cs so it can be found here. My apologies if it is against the T&Cs but if is is deleted then just go to the website in my portfolio and follow the link to the blog

    Having said that I can just agree with the guys above and say that I've had no problems with noise at high ISOs

    Gaz

    These photos are great to look at, thanks Gaz.

    Really suprised how good the NR is on the D300.

    Cheers guys

    LenShepherd
    LenShepherd e2 Member 62359 forum postsLenShepherd vcard United Kingdom
    16 Mar 2011 - 10:38 AM

    The D300s is about 1.5 ISO settings better for noise than the D200, and to 1600 similar to D3/700.
    One thing to consider is for the same viewfinder crop FX has 1 stop less depth of field than DX so for the the dof you are used to you may often need to shoot 1 ISO higher using FX.
    Another option is the D7000 which has more resolution when needed than 12 MP and better noise than the D300s.
    The D7000 is well built but is still not a pro body and some controls handle very different to D300s.
    The third option is to wait perhaps 6 months for probable D400/800 launches. Both are likely to have at least the extra resolution of the D7000, better noise than the D300s/700 and pro build quality.

    NEWMANP
    NEWMANP e2 Member 61581 forum postsNEWMANP vcard United Kingdom572 Constructive Critique Points
    16 Mar 2011 - 12:02 PM

    Im using a d300s with 150-500 sigma and im happy with settings up to 1600 asa but the d200 i have is useless beyond 400 asa.

    at 1000 the noise is hardy visible. there is a massive difference.
    Phil

    Bucephalas69
    16 Mar 2011 - 7:26 PM

    Look for yourself.
    Select D200 and D300 and see the difference.
    http://www.imaging-resource.com/IMCOMP/COMPS01.HTM

    Why the D300 though? Time to get the D7000

    dlegros
    dlegros  11217 forum posts England
    17 Mar 2011 - 12:07 PM


    Quote: Look for yourself.
    Select D200 and D300 and see the difference.
    http://www.imaging-resource.com/IMCOMP/COMPS01.HTM

    Why the D300 though? Time to get the D7000

    Shame I can't mark as useful post - the comparometer is really useful, thanks.

    User_Removed
    17 Mar 2011 - 8:29 PM

    In terms of technology the above advice seems perfectly sound. I can't comment on the D7000 because I don't have one - but it may indeed be a better buy if you don't need the build quality of the D300(s) - and it may not be terribly significant in reality. Certainly the spec look VG, although maybe a bit pricey for a "consumer" camera. (But those definitions are changing all the time anyway.)

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