Is Nikon D850 Good For Martial Art Photography

By | 17/11/2022

Information technology’southward finally here! My Nikon D850 review is finally finished! It took me eleven states, ii countries, eight weeks, and xvi,000 images to become information technology done, but here it is! This is a true field test loaded with real-globe examples, communication, and tons of tips for getting the virtually from all the new features.

Yes, it’s a flake of a long review, just I didn’t want to simply tell you almost the new features — I wanted to show you lot how to employ them also. Nothing more frustrating than a review that tells you about some amazing new feature but leaves you clueless when it comes to using information technology, correct? Well, residual assured this will give you all that and more. So, sit back, kicking your feet up and enjoy!

I besides wanted to include some extras to go along with the video. These are either items that people accept frequently asked about or that I referred to in the video.

D850 Bird In Flying (BIF) Settings

One of the questions I am getting a LOT is virtually bird-in-flight (BIF) settings. Every bit with my other cameras, this sensor sees a lot of flight feathers, and then you’re in luck!

Every bit always, keep in mind that what works for me may not work for you and that’due south cool – nosotros tin can even so be friends.

Focus Fashion: AF-C of course. Since I use BBAF, I’m ever in AF-C. However, if you’re more of a shutter release shooter, yous’ll want to make sure you lot remember to switch to AF-C for action or face cards full of 46MP disappointments. AF-C is the simply mode that tin can runway/follow your subject, so, if you’ll pardon the pun, it’s the merely way to fly!

AF Activation: For me, information technology’s always Back Button AF. It gives you the best of both AF-S and AF-C without all the switching back and forth. Rather than constitutional on, I’ll refer you lot to this good-looking guy who did a video on the field of study:

AF Area Modes: On the D850, I found myself once over again gravitating towards Group AF for BIF shots, even so, I besides used the super-modest D9 Dynamic Surface area besides – especially when the subjects were a bit slower or I needed more than precise focus. Group AF likes to grab whatever is closest to the camera, so sometimes that can lead to precipitous wingtips and cottony soft eyeballs. D9 gives you lot a picayune more precision in that department, Just it is more hard to keep on target.

Speaking of which, if you detect D9 / Grouping is too tough, try a larger expanse like D25 or F72. As a general rule, ever use the smallest AF area yous can manage for whatever bailiwick you’re after. Only go bigger if you tin’t seem to stay on target.

For more on how Nikon’south AF modes work, meet this video. Note that this was done prior to the D850 (and D500 / D5), but the mode the modes (Group, 3D etc) piece of work is the same.

Focus Tracking With Lock On (custom office A3): I mention this in the video, only I’d like to go into more detail here since Nikon has made some changes from the D810 to the D850. The offset part of this setting is, “Blocked Shot AF Response” and the thought hither is that if something comes between yous and your subject for an instant, the camera won’t bound to the obstacle but instead hesitate but a bit and stay with your target until the obstruction has passed. Very handy if you’re tracking a bird flying by and a tree jumps between you and your subject equally you pan.

The setting allows you to choose a value from one to five. The higher the number, the “stickier” the AF organization is. Of course, when people read that, the showtime thought is oftentimes to creepo it up to 5 and call it a solar day. Still, if the system is likewise viscous it will make information technology tough when you need to switch between subjects. Additionally, it can cause hesitation when you have an AF point on the wrong expanse of the discipline and are trying to lock dorsum onto the eye. I commonly have this set to two or 3, but it’south non a gear up-it-and-forget-it selection either. You may want to dive in and switch things up if the AF is letting go as well easily or when it’s stickier than a three-year-old who but discovered the maple syrup jar.

The other part of this setting is “Discipline Motion.” This new setting is a manner for yous to let the camera know how erratic or steady your subject is – especially when information technology’south coming at the camera. If y’all have a subject that likes to start and stop of a sudden, you lot want “Erratic.” On the other mitt, for a subject coming steadily at the camera, switch to “Steady.” For wildlife and BIF shots, I usually take good success just leaving information technology in the middle.

Custom Controls (Custom Setting F1): The D850 also has some heady new options for the preview button, sub-selector, function button, and AF-On button. Here’s how I have a couple of mine set upwardly.

For the
PV (preview) button
I have selected the “AF area style” option, “Single Indicate AF.” This setting allows you to press the PV button on the forepart of the photographic camera and regardless of what AF area fashion yous’re currently in, information technology will switch you back to single point as long as the push button is held in (demo in the video). This is really handy when you’re in Group AF and your subject gets into a tight area (since Group AF loves to focus on the vegetation around the critter instead of on the critter itself).

For the
Fn1 button, I take it set to bicycle through Image Area Mode (1.2X, 1.5DX, etc.). The reason for this is that the buffer capacity of this camera is somewhat express and switching to a crop fashion will increase buffer depth. And, if I’m going to crop back home anyway, I figure I might as well just do it in the field and savor the gains.

To set up, head to custom setting
F1, and cull
Fn1 push + dial plough
(the right hand column). Select “Choose image surface area” from the resulting menu. You’ll also observe an arrow on the right of this carte. Give it a press and y’all can even select which prototype areas y’all want to gyre through. Way faster than setting this stuff via the card!

Oh, and some other cool option for ingather modes is called “Masking” and is plant nether the
Photo Shooting Carte > Prototype
department. Wait for an item called
Viewfinder mask display. Plow that on and kiss those useless crop outlines farewell. Instead, yous’ll have a handy, semi-transparent mask to show you your image area. Try it, you’ll like information technology!

Frame Charge per unit: This is gear up to maximum frame rate (seven or nine, depending on if you have a grip). Keep it at maximum for the best multifariousness of wingbeats/expressions and shoot in short, controlled bursts whenever in that location’s something cool under your AF point.

Shutter Speed: I’ve been keeping my shutter speed at 1/3200 or college for most of my birds in flight shots and that seems to keep my success rate pretty high. I have gone with lower speeds, but my keeper rate gets progressively more disappointing every bit my shutter speed drops (exactly similar the D500 in fact). For faster birds, don’t be agape to go to i/5000th or higher if yous have enough light.

F/Stop: This really depends on how much calorie-free I accept at my disposal. Most of the time, I shoot wide open to proceed noise to a minimum (unremarkably F4) and capture those creamy, subject-isolating backgrounds. However, if it’s bright enough, I’ve been known to drop down to F5.6 for a little added depth-of-field fudge factor — especially with fast, tricky subjects.

ISO: This varies depending on the light of course, but I tend to cap out around ISO 6400 (preferring to keep it under ISO3200). Beyond that, I feel like I’m losing too much detail in the fur and feathers of my favorite subjects. About the merely exception to that would be if something extraordinary was happening, but if I can become basically the same shot the next day in ameliorate calorie-free, I’ll wait (or take hold of the D5).

Likewise, I generally use Transmission Mode with Auto ISO if I’g in an autoexposure kind of mood. With this method, I simply set in the ISO range I desire and cull the shutter speed and F/Stop I desire to use. From there, the camera will float the ISO to give me a proper exposure. Information technology’s either this or full manual style, depending on the subject/scene.

See this video for more:

Nikon Approved Lenses For The D850

At present, for the “Nikon approved” lens list. As noted in the video, this listing is chock-full of electric current lenses that Nikon wants to sell you. Many older discontinued lenses are Not listed but would work just fine (like any big prime number for example). Ditto for fantabulous third political party glass. And so, for what it’south worth:


AF-S NIKKOR 20 mm f / 1.8 G ED
AF-S NIKKOR 24 mm f / 1.4 G ED
AF-S NIKKOR 24 mm f / i.8 G ED
AF-S NIKKOR 28 mm f / one.4 E ED
AF-S NIKKOR 28 mm f / 1.eight Thousand
AF-S NIKKOR 35 mm f / 1.iv G
AF-S NIKKOR 35 mm f / i.viii G ED
AF-Southward NIKKOR 58 mm f / 1.4 One thousand
AF-Due south NIKKOR 85 mm f / 1.4 G
AF-South NIKKOR 85 mm f / 1.viii Chiliad
AF-S NIKKOR 105 mm f / 1.4 Due east ED
AI AF DC-Nikkor 105 mm f / 2 D
AI AF DC-Nikkor 135 mm f / 2 D
AF-S NIKKOR 200 mm f / 2 G ED VR II
AF-S NIKKOR 300 mm f / 2.8 One thousand ED VR II
AF-S NIKKOR 300 mm f / iv East PF ED VR
AF-S NIKKOR 400 mm f / 2.8 Due east FL ED VR
AF-Southward NIKKOR 500 mm f / 4 Yard ED VR
AF-Due south NIKKOR 500 mm f / 4 E FL ED VR
AF-Due south NIKKOR 600 mm f / 4 E FL ED VR
AF-Southward NIKKOR 800 mm f / v.6 E FL ED VR
AF – S Fisheye NIKKOR 8 – 15 mm f / 3.5 – iv.five E ED


AF-S NIKKOR 14-24 mm f / 2.8 G ED
AF – S NIKKOR 16 – 35 mm f / 4 Grand ED VR
AF-Due south NIKKOR 24-70 mm f / ii.8 G ED
AF – Due south NIKKOR 24 – 70 mm f / ii.eight East ED VR
AF-S NIKKOR 24 – 120 mm f / 4 Chiliad ED VR
AF-Due south VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200 mm f / ii.viii Thou IF-ED
AF-S NIKKOR lxx-200 mm f / ii.8 K ED VR 2
AF – S NIKKOR 70 – 200 mm f / 2.8 Due east FL ED VR
AF-S NIKKOR 70-200 mm f / 4 Thousand ED VR
AF-S NIKKOR fourscore-400 f / 4.5 – 5.6 M ED VR
AF-S NIKKOR 200-400 mm f / 4 Chiliad ED VR Two
AF-Due south NIKKOR 200-500 mm f / 5.6 E ED VR

Macro / PC

AF-S Micro NIKKOR 60 mm f / 2.8 Yard ED
AF-Due south VR Micro-Nikkor 105 mm f / two.viii M IF-ED
PC-East NIKKOR 24 mm f / 3.5 D ED
PC-E Micro NIKKOR 45 mm f / 2.8 D ED
PC-E Micro NIKKOR 85 mm f / ii.8 D
PC NIKKOR 19 mm f / 4 Eastward ED

D850 ISO Comparisons

Next, nosotros take the actual images from the video for ISO comparisons (100% crops, the D850 downsized to D5 and D810 size. The D500 was downsized to D850 DX size). Just click to enlarge and it will open on a new tab.

D850 vs D810

D850 vs D5

D850 in DX manner vs D500

D850 full frame downsampled vs D500 at ISO 6400

D850 Buffer Findings

Next, we take my buffer test findings. I may add more than down the route, just for now this should get you started.

First, results from my normal, outside test scene (again, these tin and volition vary depending on the scene, don’t have the number as gospel).

14 bit 7 fps

FX: 35
one.2: 80
DX: 200

fourteen bit – 9 FPS

FX: 23
i.2: 36
DX: 46

12 bit – 7fps

FX: 84
1.2: 200
DX: 200

12 bit – 9fps

FX: 44
1.ii: 70
DX: 86

Now, some figures I got with the lens cap on and viewfinder shutter closed. (The results are higher because information technology’southward like shooting fish in a barrel for the camera to compress and create a file when it’southward but black.)

12 scrap FX nine fps = 48
12 chip 7 FPS = 193
fourteen bit FX 9 FPS = 26
14 bit FX 7 FPS = 51

I as well tried a few rounds with higher ISOs. As you lot can see, the higher the ISO, the shallower the buffer:

12 bit vii FPS ISO 6400 = 67
14 bit FX 6400 = 25
xiv scrap FX 5000 = 36
14 bit FX 3200 = 43
xiv bit FX 1600 = 46
fourteen bit ISO 800 = 47
xiv bit ISO 400 = l

D850 Focus Shift Shooting Settings (Focus Stacking)

I also wanted to share the settings I typically set with I use Focus Shift Shooting (I wish they would take called it focus stacking, but what do I know…). Exist sure to come across the video for a quick intro.


Number Of Shots: 50+ (since the system stops at infinity)
Focus Width: four
Interval Until Adjacent Shot: 0 or 1
Exposure Smoothing: On (Off if y’all’re in manual mode)
Electronic Shutter: On

(I usually shoot landscapes betwixt F/half dozen.iii and F/8)


Number Of Shots: 20 (y’all can add more if needed)
Focus Width: four
Interval Until Adjacent Shot: 0 or i (set to 3 or 4 if electronic shutter is off)
Exposure Smoothing: On (Off if y’all’re in manual mode)
Electronic Shutter: On
(I ordinarily shoot macros betwixt F/8 and F/11)

D850 Sample Photos

Finally, a few sample photos.

About the author: Steve Perry is a nature photographer and the owner of Backcountry Gallery. You can find more of his work, words, photos, and videos on his website, Facebook, and YouTube channel. This commodity was likewise published here.


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Originally posted 2022-02-12 23:06:41.