Troubling times for PPs

Confirmation bias rules.

For the man in the street the idea of blowing $3,000 on a camera, without a lens mind you, is silly. For the Pixel Peeper (PP for short) it’s downright scary.

You see, the PP, who prides himself on the definition of his output when he zooms in on the screen has ‘invested’ ten to thirty times that sum in his medium format digital gear. So his expenditure naturally generates confirmation bias. It’s the most expensive gear out there so it has to be the best, right?

Then what happens is the same as happened when Canon’s 5D obsoleted medium format film gear almost overnight. Something better comes along, courtesy of Moore’s Law. The PP has a bunch of boat anchors and is looking at an upstart which equals his quality at one tenth the cost.

No great secret that I’m writing about the killer duo, here, the new Nikon D800 and D800E DSLR bodies. What makes matters even worse for the PP is that the inexpensive Nikon takes just about any Nikon lens made since 1959, finally doing many of these amazing optics justice. The sensor is at last likely better than the lens projecting the image on it.

And while no one could argue that the ‘pro’ DSLR is a lightweight, just ask a PP with his handcart and bad back how the bulk and weight of the gear compares to MF DSLRs. Not to mention speed of operation.

I’m not much of a follower of the debate raging about the latest and greatest in sensors, but I know a seismic shift when I see one and the Nikon D800 is such a shift. Were I an MF DSLR aficionado I would be following the same advice I gave myself when the Canon 5D came along. Run, don’t walk, to your favorite advertising medium and dump the MF gear just as fast as you can. Paperweights have little value.

Clap for PPs. The Nikon’s 36mp Sony-made sensor.

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