Nikon D800 DSLR Camera, Body Only

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82% Gold Award
The D800 offers a level of fine detail that ranks it among the best performers we've subjected to our studio testing. It also excels in its impressive high ISO performance, fast and accurate AF system, and the wide dynamic range of its image files.”

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Key Features

  • 36.3MP full-frame CMOS sensor
  • 51-point AF system (15 cross-type)
  • ISO 100-6400 expandable to 25,600
  • 3.2 inch LCD with 921,000 dots
  • 1080p HD video recording
  • 4 frames per second continuous shooting
  • 100% viewfinder
  • 91,000 pixel metering system
  • Built-in flash with wireless control
  • Dual-axis level (viewfinder and live view)
  • Uncompressed video output via HDMI
  • Weather-sealed and shock-proof
  • 15.3MP DX-format crop mode

Product Description

Tripling the pixel count of the previous-generation Nikon D700, the 36MP D800 also offers a slightly larger 3.2 inch fixed LCD with an identical 921,000 dot resolution. Features typical to Nikon's pro DSLRs are included, such as a 51-point AF system with 15 cross-type points, full 1080p HD video recording and an ISO range of 100-6400 expandable up to a 25,600 equivalent. The D800 offers dual CF and SD card slots, giving photographers the option to back up images in camera. There are lots of opportunities to fine-tune camera settings to your liking, including an option to adjust automatic shutter speed selection. The D800 also offers several crop modes, including a 1.5x DX mode that will automatically provide frame-lines when a DX lens is detected. Despite the drastic shift in resolution from the previous model, those familiar with the D700 will feel right at home with the D800's controls and handling. The D800 also shares its predecessor's weather and shock-proof environmental sealing.


Body type
Body type Mid-size SLR
Max resolution 7360 x 4912
Other resolutions 6144 x 4912, 6144 x 4080, 5520 x 3680, 4800 x 3200, 4608 x 3680, 4608 x 3056, 3680 x 2456, 3600 x 2400, 3072 x 2456, 3072 x 2040, 2400 x 1600
Image ratio w:h 5:4, 3:2
Effective pixels 36 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 37 megapixels
Sensor size Full frame (35.9 x 24 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Processor Expeed 3
ISO 100 - 6400 in 1, 1/2 or 1/3 EV steps (50 - 25600 with boost)
White balance presets 12
Custom white balance Yes (5)
Image stabilization No
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Fine, Normal, Basic
Optics & Focus
  • Phase Detect
  • Multi-area
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Digital zoom No
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 51
Lens mount Nikon F
Focal length multiplier 1×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fixed
Screen size 3.2
Screen dots 921,000
Touch screen No
Screen type TFT Color LCD with 170 degrees wide-viewing angle
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage 100%
Viewfinder magnification 0.7×
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 30 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/8000 sec
Aperture priority Yes
Shutter priority Yes
Manual exposure mode Yes
Subject / scene modes No
Built-in flash Yes (pop-up)
Flash range 12.00 m (at ISO 100)
External flash Yes (Hot-shoe, Wireless plus sync connector)
Flash modes Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Slow sync, Rear curtain, High-speed sync
Continuous drive 4.0 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 to 20 sec, 1 to 9 exposures at intervals of 0.5, 1, 2 or 3 sec)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Average
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 1 EV steps)
AE Bracketing (2, 3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)
WB Bracketing Yes (2 to 9 frames in steps of 1, 2 or 3)
Videography features
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30, 25, 24 fps), 1280 x 720 (60, 50, 30, 25 fps), 640 x 424 (24 fps)
Format MPEG-4, H.264
Microphone Mono
Speaker Mono
Storage types Compact Flash (Type I), SD/SDHC/SDXC UHS-I compliant
Storage included None
USB USB 3.0 (5 GBit/sec)
HDMI Yes (Mini Type C)
Remote control Yes (Optional, wired or wireless )
Environmentally sealed Yes (Water and dust resistant)
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description Lithium-Ion EN-EL15 rechargeable battery & charger
Weight (inc. batteries) 1000 g (2.20 lb / 35.27 oz)
Dimensions 146 x 123 x 82 mm (5.75 x 4.84 x 3.23)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes
GPS Optional
GPS notes GP-1


DPReview Conclusion

Scoring is relative only to the other cameras in the same category at the time of review.

Score Breakdown
Poor Excellent
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality (raw)
Image quality (jpeg)
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Movie / video mode
Gold Award
Gold Award
82 %
Overall Score

The D800 combines swift operation and well-designed controls with outstanding image quality that is particularly impressive at high ISO settings. Expanded video capabilities hold appeal for those who need to produce both stills and video while on assignment. The camera's 36 MP sensor allows for class-leading resolution in a 35mm format camera... if you're prepared to hold your technique and equipment to the highest standards.

Good For

Photographers who regularly shoot low-light settings that demand high ISO performance. Those who need very high resolution to make large prints. Videographers who can make use of uncompressed video.

Not So Good For

User Reviews

4.61333 out of 5 stars
  • TheApprentice, Feb 1, 2013 GMT:
    Excellent Wedding and Portrait Camera

    I purchased this camera about a month ago and have taken several hundred photos. I have combiled this camera with the Tamron 24-70 F:2.8 VC because I need the VC. I absolutely love this camera and lens combo. the photos are crisp with excellent color and contrast. I can easily shoot at 1600 ISO without any noise. The noise becomes aparant at 3200ISO, but barely. Together with the Tamron 24-70 VC, I have not encountered a situation that required a higher ISO that 1600 (indoor wedding, ...

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  • Erdil yilmaz, Dec 23, 2012 GMT:
    Good for money

    Good for studio Problems: complicated menus no good for long exposures

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  • UnTone, Dec 20, 2012 GMT:
    Great quality, but too much power

    I purchased Nikon D800 emotionally. Instead of really weighten all pro and cons, I just took it. First of all, I should say that it is great camera. I would event say - it is absolutely best camera at the moment IMO. It has great image quality: resolution, colors, dynamic range, hi-iso capabilities. BUT in most cases, I put the pictures on the web or print A4 (20x30 cm) format as maximum. Do I really need these 36 MP? Answer is - In most cases "No". 36 Mp is sometimes problem: 70 Mb raw ...

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  • avbee, Oct 11, 2012 GMT:
    Excellent camera

    D800/E is a wonderful camera. It is fast (focus), and has 100% viewfinder. It has highest resolution currently in Nikon's family. The AWB is improved, and the color is more neutral than predecessor. The color tone is second generation from Nikon. Hence, if you compare with D700/D3 etc, last generation is more saturated / more contrast. Also, the DR of D800 is a lot better than D700. Regarding the ISO, I can say, it is a bit better than D700. But keep in mind, don't enlarge both ...

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Other Videos About this Product

Nikon D800 by DPReview

Questions & Answers


D810 with Nikkor fast (f/1.4) primes (24, 35 & 85mm)

Hello all. I and a number of other experienced photographers have been plagued with AF issues when pairing the three f/1.4 high end primes with our D800(E) cameras. The issue being a gross unrepeatability of the AF system where even with good AF targets, the camera will focus unreliably with these three lenses, scattering results in front of and (perhaps more commonly) behind the intended point with complete abandon. Not everyone seems to suffer from this, but those that do will know what I am talking about. It is interesting that I do not see any such issues with the f/1.8 primes and have the 28, 35 and 85 f/1.8 lenses, all of which focus much more reliably on both of our D800Es. Also interesting is the fact that all three f/1.4 primes focus very well indeed on our D700s. Our D800Es are both equally affected by this. They are both "early" units from the first shipments into the UK but I have been able to repeat the behaviour on two recent D800s. I am a member of NPS and Nikon have ...

MisterHairy asked
5 months ago


This is interesting. Now that the D810 is released, and potentially improves the AF, more people are starting to confess that their D800 AF wasn't a bag of chips. Prior to the D810 release any user with the courage to mention D800 AF issues would be attacked and promptly referred to pg. 100 of the user guide. �Now that's it's D810 pride week I guess it's safe to come out of the closet. Continue Reading

vincent__l answered
5 months ago

I had the same inconsistent focusing issues with my D800E.  I ended-up selling all my fast  glass since it was unusable wide-open - the very reason I purchased the glass in the first place (Nikon 85mm f1.4, Nikon 85mm f1.8, Nikon 50mm f1.4, Nikon 50mm f1.8 and Sigma ART 35mm f1.4)!  A trip to Nikon repair for the D800E did nothing to correct the problem.  I felt a little pain selling the Sigma 35mm ART and the Nikon 85mm f1.4 lenses, since, when they did focus properly, they had amazing IQ.  As a note, I tested a friend's D800E and it had the same problem, albeit a bit improved from my camera. My solution was to purchase the Sony A7R to use with fast glass and retain the 36MP.  The results with the Zeiss lenses shot wide-open have been stellar, but it meant I needed to carry two cameras, since the mirror-less is not good for action photography. I just sold my D800E and acquired the D810, which I am very pleased with.  I no longer have any fast glass to test, but I still had ... Continue Reading

Jeff2013 answered
5 months ago

You say that, but can you offer any proof that the 810 offers more reliable AF with these lenses? Your message reads more like someone with an axe to grind than someone with some useful information to share. Continue Reading

MisterHairy answered
5 months ago


D600 RAW noise beats 5D MKIII

The D600 beats the competition according the the graphs on: So why do the sample images look worse?

rbirkby asked
2 years ago


rbirkby wrote: The D600 does indeed have lower noise than the 5D3 in raw.  The part I found funny was how someone rated your post with a thumbs down.  I had to laugh as some Canon fanboy probably got upset, and voted it down.  This is what these forums have come to....fanboys and trolls pummelling posts with thumbs down ratings. Continue Reading

The Davinator answered
2 years ago

Or... unless of course you want to see them. I'm not actually saying they're there or not there.  But I will say that people will see whatever they want to see.  You just have to look at the arguing between Canon and Nikon fanboys to realize this to be the case. Continue Reading

michaeladawson answered
2 years ago

The images are Jpegs and Canon use NR even if its off at higher ISO as far as i know, I think you will find the raw files will be cleaner Continue Reading

Dave Courtenay answered
2 years ago


Small Rant: all A7/r reviews are from Pro perspective, not casual NEX user

Explanation: All reviews I have come across are from photographers who are Pro, shoot Full Frame and typically use D800 or MkIII. Also some Leica shooters, but that crowd for now shy away from engaging in direct comparison a bit :) But overall, all questions for these people have been answered 10x by now with 1000 samples. My first APSC camera was NEX 5N. I own about 10 lenses, mix of AF e-mount, Alpha+LAEA2 and various adapted manual. I would describe myself as prosumer, very engaged but past-time shooter only. I think there are a lot of you out there with my perspective. Where are our reviews? Surely they will come, but here are a few questions i am waiting to be answered: > APS-C vs Full Frame Feel? NEX7+E2418 vs A7+FE3528. Havent found any direct comparison yet. > Phase Detect AF with standard E mounts? There are some youtube tests on A7 which seem slow. Do we know these lenses are actually supported on A7 as they are on NEX? > Sample RAWs of cropped shots yes, my favorite NEX ...

phynesse asked
1 year ago


For any non-Pro or anyone without deep pockets, the NEX 7 is a bargain.  Native lenses all cost less than $1000, while most A7 lenses are over $1000.  Do you really want to spend $3000 just to buy a few lenses?  Why not get the Zeiss 24mm lens and the Sony 50mm F/1.8 OSS instead? As mentioned the NEX 7 with the Zeiss 24mm lens will out perform the A7 with the 35mm F/2.8 lens.  It will also cost hundreds less for the camera/lens.  Also, with the NEX 7 you have speed boster options too. I am disappointed to see all these people giving up on the small NEX bodies with great IQ as a primary camera so quickly.  I still believe they are good enough for almost everyone. Continue Reading

DT200 answered
1 year ago

I have discovered that the amount of money I am willing to spend on photography is somewhat correlated with the skill level I've acquired in photography. When I first convinced myself to start getting serious, the $600 or $700 NEX 5N seemed outrageously expensive. 6 months later, I couldn't believe I was buying a Sony Zeiss 24 for $999. I had to buy the insurance to help justify it . . . just in case. I very much had buyer's remorse. I sent it back only to buy another a few months later after looking at the images I had produced. Wishy washy to the max. ;) Fast forward to earlier this year and I am buying a Canon 6D and kit lens for over $2,000 and a Canon 50/1.2L for well over $1,000 and adding a $900 Sigma 35 and another Canon 100L macro lens (I did sell the 6D kit lens before ever using it). This amount of spending was outrageous to me 2 years ago and now it seems appropriate to help ensure the image I see with my eyes is not inhibited by the equipment I use. I can still grab my ... Continue Reading

sean lancaster answered
1 year ago

Most of the so called Pro reviews are from individuals who have a close relationship with Sony....... Continue Reading

Keit ll answered
1 year ago


  • D800 Camera Body
  • AN-DC6 Strap
  • EN-EL15 Rechargeable Li-ion Battery
  • MH-25 Battery Charger
  • UC-E14 USB Cable
  • BM-12 LCD Monitor Cover
  • BF-1B Body Cap
  • BS-1 Accessory Shoe Cap
  • DK-17 Viewfinder Eyepiece
  • NikonView NX2 CD ROM

Warranty Information

"No registration or "warranty" card is included or needed with a Nikon D-SLR or Coolpix camera. Keep your original, dated proof of purchase from the Authorized Nikon Inc. dealer in case warranty service is ever needed. These products do include either a mail-in form or a paper with a web link to our registration page:
It's advised to register your product with Nikon so that we can send you information about future updates or service issues that may arise.

Nikkor lenses come with a standard one year warranty and Nikon Inc. lenses sold by authorized Nikon Inc. dealers will have a Nikon Inc. Five Year Extension. To register for the five year extension, one copy of the included form must be mailed in as indicated. Keep the Customer copy of the form as well as the original proof of purchase (sales receipt)."

Read the full warranty.

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