Nikon D600: Think Twice Before You Jump

UPDATE 9/25/12: Upon testing, the D600 appears to have a pretty sweet sensor -- if the issues noted below are not a concern for you.

Nikon has just officially announced their long-awaited entry-level full-frame body. Full spec reports are everywhere, as Nikon seeds lots of sites with advance info and embargoes them until the hour of release. So I won't duplicate that content here.

But for lighting photographers, the camera has two issues that are of concern. One is minor and (sadly at this point) expected.

But the other is major and quite unexpected.

I'll be honest with you, I had been looking toward this camera as my next "second body." I love full frame, but the D4 is just too much money and the D800 was too many megapixels for my needs.

So the D600 was gonna be the sweet spot. It did not need to be super rugged. My D3 would do that. At $2100 (UPDATE: now shipping) this was to be a second body, and/or a backup.

So, What's Not to Like?

The first thing, and given recent history something not unexpected, is the lack of a sync jack. I was pissed off surprised when the D7000 didn't include it. But a full-frame body without a sync jack? That's just a little weird.

It's almost like Nikon is not really considering their lighting photographers unless you are willing to fork out over $3,000 anymore. Which leads me to the absolute deal-breaker for me for this camera...

Out of Sync

The Nikon D600 has a 1/200th sync speed. Which for me means game over.

And as soon as I mentioned it on Twitter, I got a flurry of "Why does that matter?" tweets back. Here's why it matters.

When you are balancing flash in bright ambient, you start at your max sync for your shutter speed. That will give you the most flash-friendly corresponding aperture, whether you are normally exposing or underexposing the ambient.

Some cameras, including some Nikons (remember when you really cared, Nikon?) had standard syncs of 1/500th of a second. Which instantly made every flash you owned twice as effective.

Think about it: 1/250th at f/16 equals 1/500th at f/11. Since the flash only cares about the aperture, you could balance in the same light with half of the flash power.

Put differently: an Einstein 640ws monobloc, when used with a 1/500th syncing body, effectively becomes a 1280ws flash because that power is going up against an easier aperture in a daylight balancing situation.

Even better, due to the magic of some Nikons' electronic shutters, they could sync at any speed so long as the speed was longer than the flash's pulse length. Higher sync speeds equal much more flexibility with your flashes. Which means you can nuke the sun at distance with just a speedlight. Which is awesome.

The D600 takes a step backwards, with a max sync speed of 1/200th. This is the same math, but working in reverse.

True, it is only a third of a stop as compared to 1/250th. But with speedlights and daylight, that is a critical third of a stop. To be clear, this camera makes every single flash you own less effective.

Also, the difference between 1/250th and 1/200th sync is deadly when it comes to stopping action when balancing flash and ambient. 1/250th is dicey enough. 1/200th just doesn't work.

Granted, the feature set and price is going to be very tempting for many. And not to say it is a bad choice—they will sell a lot of these cameras.

Just take a moment to fully understand what that 1/200th will mean every time you flash outdoors in full ambient, so you can go into the purchase with both eyes open.

UPDATE: Not to be outdone, Canon has lowered the bar even further. Looks like the upcoming 6D will have a sync speed of 1/180th. Who's got my next bid? 1/160th? 1/125th? #Yeesh


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Blogger DX said...

Thanks for the info. I am wondering about the shelf life on my D700 and starting to look at it's successor. Daniel

September 13, 2012 1:36 AM  
Blogger Mic Ty said...

David, I was also bothered by the 1/200 sync speed but FYI the D600 allows non-HSS 1/250 sync with a slight reduction in flash range (analogous to the 1/320 mode of the D7000). I haven't tested the difference between 1/250 or 1/320 with a flash meter but it didn't seem like much. I'm taking the leap on the D600!

September 13, 2012 1:38 AM  
Blogger Tim said...

I notice that you don't mention the D700. I'm currently shooting Canon and are about to jump into a full frame Nikon boat but would like to get more into strobes. How does the D700 stack up against the D600 and D7000?

September 13, 2012 1:43 AM  
OpenID fauxtauxgrafix said...

If Nikon was able to make a dSLR that had a sync speed of 1/500th, then why does Canon and Nikon seem to only manufacture newer cameras that sync around 1/200th to 1/250th? I understand sync speed, but what is truly stopping manufactures from exceeding that 1/200th to 1/250th range???

September 13, 2012 1:45 AM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


I am betting the "slight reduction in range" corresponds to about a third of a stop...


Definitely go full-frame, IMO. Given that, if you don't need 36MP, a D700 would be a good choice. After waiting forever for Nikon to update it—and then Nikon updating it twice now—I will probably get a D700 for my next second body.


September 13, 2012 1:46 AM  
Blogger Matt said...

I agree that 1/200 isn't marvellous for stopping action, but unless I've missed something this camera will actually make flashes MORE powerful than the old D40/D50/D70/D70s. They went to 1/500 at ISO 200, the D600 does 1/200 at ISO 50. By my back of envelope calculations that's an INCREASE in power of 2/3 stop.


September 13, 2012 1:52 AM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


The something that you are in fact missing is that the ISO adjustment is global. It affects flash exposure, too. The sync speed exists in the sweet spot in that it uniquely buys you more flash reach.

September 13, 2012 1:54 AM  
Blogger Alvaro said...


I understand fully the concern. But would you care about this low syncspeed if the D600 still has the electronic shutter option?

My D90 has it burn under a lot of menus. I imagine all the rest of the newer nikons have it as well.

I was waiting for this camera a lot. I want to upgrade to full frame, but I consider it a huge investment at a retail of 2400eur (Wait in USA is a lot cheaper). As many I am startinga photography business and so far I am rocking a D90. But now I am in a point were I need to invest in faster glass and it depends on whether I am going to make the jump to FX or not, in which glass I must invest. I would love to hear your opinion from that point of view.

September 13, 2012 2:02 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

@fauxtauxgrafix, the reason they don't do faster sync speeds anymore is because they now use a real shutter again. The bodies with the high xsync (d50, d70, some of the d1 IIRC) used a snap shutter on the sensor. On the d70 the cheap mechanical shutter could only do about 1/90th, everything above it was done with the electronic shutter.

The problem with the electronic shutter is that it takes up half of the photosite, so your noise levels go up about a stop. It also does not handle very bright areas very well. I have numerous d50 shots where the sun is misshaped or miscolored because the overloaded photosites spilled over to their neighbors.

It's a tradeoff, and the snap shutter's only benefits are price (cheaper mechanical shutter) and fast xsync. Its drawbacks stretch too far into every other aspect of photography and so nobody uses them anymore.

September 13, 2012 2:03 AM  
Blogger Matt said...


I see it now. It's a reduction of 1.3 stops flash power. Phooey :(

And it isn't $1,500. Ho hum.

September 13, 2012 2:13 AM  
Blogger Mike McClelland said...

so, ummmm, why don't they use 1/500 sync speeds, anyway? lord knows my old canon would make me a happy camper if i didn't need to use hss to go over 1/250.

September 13, 2012 2:18 AM  
Blogger Seth Hancock Photography said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

September 13, 2012 2:32 AM  
Blogger Seth Hancock Photography said...

Where's the 10-pin connector? As a flash photographer this port is one of the indispensable connectors on my D3s. Are they disguising it in the GPS section on the left side of the camera? Hopefully I am just missing it.

I am looking at the photos and reading the specs on Nikon's site and don't see a mention of it anywhere. Hopefully I am just missing it.

September 13, 2012 2:39 AM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


Nope, no 10-pin. Maybe it comes with a signed picture of Ashton Kutcher instead. :/

September 13, 2012 2:44 AM  
Blogger J. Gerald Gonzales said...

With my 5D Mark II - it is SUPPOSED to sync at 1/200. In reality, it's more like 1/160.

In the words of the great prophet, Joe Strummer:
Don't they know it is wrong, to cheat the trying man?

September 13, 2012 2:59 AM  
Blogger oferinga said...

Former Dxxx models are considered 'pro' camera's but Nikon lists the D600 as a 'consumer' model on the Dutch Nikon website.

September 13, 2012 3:58 AM  
Blogger MacLo said...

i've a Pentax.. and.. it sync at 180 at max!! :s

September 13, 2012 4:27 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

Wouldn't PW III's let you sync way, way higher? I thought they had some kind of black magic trickery that sorted it all out (with some reduction in power of course).

September 13, 2012 5:44 AM  
Blogger Marcin Bencer said...

THe sync speed is not so big issue, look at all photographers hwo use Canon 5D ? 1/160 is working for them.

September 13, 2012 6:34 AM  
Blogger Copen-Z said...

September 13, 2012 6:37 AM  
Blogger Grant Martin said...

That's why I use an X100 with an SB900. Sync to 1/1000

September 13, 2012 6:46 AM  
Blogger Grant Martin said...

For those moments I use my X100 that can sync to 1/1000

September 13, 2012 6:48 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

Clever move to only put the 39point af system in it otherwise it would cannibalise D800 sales for people that don't want 36MP.

Very lucky I finally got my hands on my D800 and could sell my 700 before this was released and the price plummeted.

September 13, 2012 7:03 AM  
Blogger JoaoF said...

hi! my first comment here.
thanks for the update, i'm a nikon shooter but didn't know there was a new body on the block. has to flash syncc "problems", i think Nikon was only thinking in keeping theyr market active, with their CLS and flash sync up to 1/8000th and newwer flashes. it's a choice for marketing i guess. i never quite understood nikon markting choices.

thank you
João Figueiredo

September 13, 2012 7:23 AM  
Blogger Jonh Hernández said...

Hi David,

i made some numbers and i wonder if they right..

lets say im in full day time, and using my sb900 on top of camera to simplify things.

So if im with 1/250 F11 with a d700 and i go full power on the sb900 it says 2.7meters ( iso200 Zoom 17mm )

And if i do the same at 1/200 F13 ( Same exposure as before) it goes down to 2.4meters (same parameters)

Now 30cm may not seem much but its a 12% of power lost because of that in the situations where you using your flash full power outdoors, in not full power outdoors we can say that its reducing your recicle time wich is not much better.

The 12% extrapolates to all zoom positions on the flash at 200mm it goes from 6.9m to 6.1m wich is a 12% aswell.

am i right on this numbers?

pretty sad to me i though selling the d3s and d300 to get two of this if the price was right but the european price is nuts,, 1995 pounds in uk, expect not less than 2.4k euros in rest of europe...

September 13, 2012 7:29 AM  
Blogger JoaoF said...

hi! my first comment here.
thanks for the update, i'm a nikon shooter but didn't know there was a new body on the block. has to flash syncc "problems", i think Nikon was only thinking in keeping theyr market active, with their CLS and flash sync up to 1/8000th and newwer flashes. it's a choice for marketing i guess. i never quite understood nikon markting choices.

thank you
João Figueiredo

September 13, 2012 7:43 AM  
Blogger spiritualspatula said...

It has a KINDA 10 pin. It's a mini variety, apparently.
Photo can be found here-

September 13, 2012 8:00 AM  
Blogger JKorn said...

1/200th? What are you complaining about? My 5DMKII will only give me 1/160th. Lol (but crying on the inside)

September 13, 2012 8:28 AM  
Blogger Rob Peterson said...

D700 isn't so bad! I've been shooting with it since it came out and it's a great workhorse of a camera. You'll be pleased!

September 13, 2012 8:29 AM  
Blogger Barnacle said...

i won't be giving up my D300s anytime soon!

September 13, 2012 9:33 AM  
Blogger JS said...

I was reeeally hoping for a reason to not buy this. Now I have two. (I'm very much with you on the D800, btw.)

My 3-year old D700, which I bought for $2000 is — bar none — my best body investment ever.

September 13, 2012 9:49 AM  
Blogger Pat Morrissey said...

UK buyers also have a $=£ premium so in the UK it will be £3,541.73 - too much for me to even consider Add the cost of replacing DX lenses and it's way out of my range.

September 13, 2012 10:01 AM  
Blogger enigmeow said...

Amusingly, this exact same complaint about flash sync speed also tweaked me about the D4. My D4 only goes to 1/250 while my D700 did a great job at 1/320. The result was me literally having to buy another SB910 in order to deal with the issue

I find myself using my D700 in some action shots just because it can sync at 1/320 and eliminate the ambient light better

September 13, 2012 10:46 AM  
Blogger Michael Kormos said...

1/200 flash sync vs. 1/250 is only a third of a stop. Not really the end of the world. And a PC sync (that mounts in the hotshoe) can be had for $20. Nikon's goal was a full-frame entry level body at a $2k price point. You can't have it all. Frankly, I think the few places they cut corners will easily be offset by its attractive price. I think the D600 is going to sell like pancakes.

September 13, 2012 11:12 AM  
Blogger markblock said...

David.. So many times I wonder about the motivation of Internet photo gurus when it comes to hawking manufacturers' goods. You've just renewed my faith. Thanks for the honest reporting, as well as all of the other incredibly great (FREE) information. ~A fan.

September 13, 2012 11:34 AM  
Blogger Kurt Jürgen Lindner said...

1/3 of a loss in the sync is a non-issue for me personally when compared to everything it can do.

The ISO handeling with the uncompressed HDMI out is enough to leverage it against the MKII and MKIII, then there's the audio improvements. . .

September 13, 2012 11:50 AM  
OpenID said...

From the D600 Specs in the .PDF from the Nikon Website: X=1/200 s; synchronizes with shutter at 1/250 s or slower (flash range drops at speeds between 1/200 and 1/250 s)

What does this mean??

September 13, 2012 12:06 PM  
Blogger Mark M. Fredrickson said...

What is the best sync speed currently available on an interchangeable lens camera?

I hold out high hopes for global electronic shutters in the future. I doubt manufacturers will make sync speed a priority, but we might get it through the back door as video is increasingly important.

September 13, 2012 12:09 PM  
Blogger Dan Donovan said...

You can buy an adapter for the hotshot that gives you a pc sync plug.

September 13, 2012 12:15 PM  
Blogger Matt Carr said...

I would say the lack of a sync port is the biggest issue. I've made do with Canon's 1/200 (yes, I get that) on my 5d's for some time. Really, most of the time I'm not lighting the entire frame, mostly something around the middle third, I can get away with 1/320 and even 1/400 sometimes. Of course, I'm not shooting white walls in dark rooms either. Seriously, 1/250 to 1/200 is 1/3rd a stop. Just go buy the HO reflector for your Einstein and boost it's output by 1 stop.

September 13, 2012 12:42 PM  
Blogger Cliff Etzel said...

As someone who has been a shooter for over 20 years, listening to the complaints about 2/3 stop in shutter speed has me walking away shaking my head.

Back in the days of analog chrome and such, that would make a difference, but todays cameras and RAW images and post production software removes those constraints.

I'd rather shoot a more powerful battery driven strobe, put ND filters on my lens and do the mental gymnastics of lighting ratios with a handheld meter.

September 13, 2012 1:21 PM  
Blogger Yugo said...

Thanks for the informative Strobist perspective! (Not to mention the soothing reassurance that buying a refurb D700 from Nikon earlier this year wasn't a mistake.)

The target market for the D600 won't know or care about flash other than the pop-up that will automatically fire whenever the full Auto system says to, or for the slightly more sophisticated, when the Scene mode dictates.

Silver lining? D700's should get cheaper now! (I saw a "mint" one advertised at a local Hunt's for $1500 even before the D600 was announced.)

September 13, 2012 1:34 PM  
Blogger Francis & Wendy Icasiano said...


Wikipedia's article on the focal-plane shutter does a good job of explaining the physical limitations of exceeding sync speeds of 1/200th to 1/250th of a second.

The gist is that your shutter is composed of two curtains, one that slides out of the way to expose the sensor (or film), and another that closes behind it. Above your max sync speed, the rear curtain is already closing before the front curtain has fully opened. Therefore, you have what appears to be more of a rolling slit that exposes the sensor rather than an fully opened and fully closed shutter.

Above the max sync speed, your flash fires when the rear curtain has begun closing, and thus part of sensor is blocked and doesn't get any of the light from the flash.

September 13, 2012 2:03 PM  
Blogger dudley206098 said...

I hear it does not have rear button focusing? is this possible?

September 13, 2012 2:34 PM  
Blogger dudley206098 said...

I hear it does not have rear button focus? Is that possible?

September 13, 2012 2:34 PM  
Blogger Jürgen Kaspar said...

even the top Nikon Body D4 has no Sync of 1/500s - and why? I think it is a problem of the physic - let's make some calculation: the distance of 24mm must be traveled in 1/500s,
24mm * 500 (for a Sec.) * 60 (for Minute) * 60 (for a hour) /100 (for Meter) /1000 (for Kilometer) = 432 km/h -> that's need a very strong mechanic for the shutter and you have the time for acceleration up and down, so you need more speed at the peak

September 13, 2012 2:51 PM  
Blogger Jürgen Kaspar said...

even the top Nikon Body D4 has no Sync of 1/500s - and why? I think it is a problem of the physic - let's make some calculation: the distance of 24mm must be traveled in 1/500s,
24mm * 500 (for a Sec.) * 60 (for Minute) * 60 (for a hour) /100 (for Meter) /1000 (for Kilometer) = 432 km/h -> that's need a very strong mechanic for the shutter and you have the time for acceleration up and down, so you need more speed at the peak

September 13, 2012 2:52 PM  
Blogger Sam Feinstein said...

Doesn't the D600 have high speed sync? My D300 will sync an external flash up to 1/8000.

September 13, 2012 3:11 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

Oh rubbish, I didn't even notice that at first.

Well, Sony just came up with the RX1, which uses a leaf-shutter. Only issue is that you'd be bound to the fixed 35mm optics.

September 13, 2012 3:13 PM  
Blogger Nigel said...

If I'm not mistaken, the electronic shutter capabilities used to be something CCD had over CMOS. Not sure about current technologies though.

As for the D600's sync speed, do you think its because it probably uses the D7000's internals (to save cost) and therefore the shutter has a longer distance to traverse with an FF sensor. All in all, hardly as surprising and shocking as you make it out to be.

September 13, 2012 3:17 PM  
Blogger Sam Feinstein said...

Yes, it DOES have high speed sync up to 1/4000,

September 13, 2012 3:29 PM  
Blogger Janet Ramsay and Keith Winsor said...

It would be nice to have the option to buy a camera that does exactly what you want that falls just in to your budget, but the reality is that Nikon like every other manufacturer in the world is trying to push its customers in to their sweet spot.
If the 600 had everything that we wanted they would have a tough time selling 700's 800's etc.


September 13, 2012 4:05 PM  
Blogger Wolfgang Kratky said...

For those complaining about higher prices in Europe please note, that prices are announced without VAT/sales tax in the US and including VAT in the EU which makes aprox. 20% of noticed difference. The rest -the real difference of about 12% on this camera has its reason in thankfully much higher social standards that have to be financed by taxes and duties

September 13, 2012 4:27 PM  
OpenID Joe said...

This is a Bummer! This is a real disappointment. I maybe could have lived without a PC port but a sync speed of 200 is unacceptable to me also. It looks like the D700 for me, considering I'm really not interested in video.

September 13, 2012 4:44 PM  
Blogger Sam Feinstein said...

Although that may require using the Nikon brand speedlights.

September 13, 2012 4:49 PM  
Blogger Jürgen Kaspar said...

@Sam Feinstein High Speed Sync does not work with stupid strobist flashes - you need iTTL - try high speed sync with an old metz or a youngnuo ...

September 13, 2012 4:50 PM  
Blogger Phi Tran said...


I think for many average folks who just started out and don't use much flashes, they probably wont' know the limitation of max sync 1/200th.

Being said that, I'm Canon 5dII shooter who has to live and work around that limitation. My solution has been using TTL on my flash so I can virtually shoot at all speed with my single speed light and overpower the sun :).

Hope you don't mind me sharing some photos:

Inline images:


September 13, 2012 4:51 PM  
Blogger DArt said...

Did someone really tell you that lower sync speed doesn't matter that much?
It matters A LOT to me as it does for you and everyone else who knows its usefulness well enough.

As long as I am shooting with Pentax, it has always pissed me off the 1/180" sync speed, and they keep producing new models with that same speed. Which might be one of the reasons (paired with the lack of a full frame DSLR) why I'd leave the brand one day.

Being a portrait photographer and a strobist myself, I guess the lack of a sync jack and the sync speed almost similar to Pentax bodies won't make the D600 the chance I've been waiting for to make my switch.

September 13, 2012 4:54 PM  
Blogger Michael Bock said...

Here's why 1/3 of a stop matters. Keep in mind, a stop is a value that is twice the stop below it and half the stop above it. Therefore, 1/3 or 1/2 of a stop is not a fixed value, rather its value is dependent on where that stop is on the scale.

For instance, if you start with a value of 1, one stop above it would be 2 and one stop below would be .5. Therefore, 1/2 stop above one would equal 1.5 (halfway between 1 and 2) and 1/2 stop below would be .75 (halfway between .5 and 1). Not a big deal as far as absolute numeric values are concerned. But lets say we start with a value of 32. One stop above would be 64 and one step below would only be 16. Therefore, 1/2 step below would be 24 and a half step above would be 48! That means a 1/2 step below has a value of 8 but that 1/2 step above is twice that!

So 1/2 or a 1/3 step isn't a big deal at the lower ends of the scale, but as you keep increasing, those fractions of steps become a much bigger deal! So when you're talking the top end of the scale in terms of needed flash power, a 1/3 of a stop is a huge deal.

If you're a mathmetician, please feel free to correct me.

September 13, 2012 4:59 PM  
Blogger Deano said...

@David - Can you elaborate a bit on your comment that the D800 has too many megaixels for you? I find the ability to crop and still get a very detailed shot to be a real asset, but I am just curious from your perspective what you see is the issue. Thanks!

September 13, 2012 6:03 PM  
Blogger Dan Donovan said...

The PC Sync adapter for Nikon is the AS-15. This slides on the hotshot and gives you a receptacle for your PC cord.

September 13, 2012 6:04 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I was annoyed when I first saw that, but then realized that ever since I started using TTL triggers, I'm usually up over 1/1000th anyway because I like to kill depth of field. I know this puts extra demands on the need for light (I double up speedlights) and TTL triggers aren't cheap, but for me it makes no difference.

September 13, 2012 6:34 PM  
Blogger zobeleye said...

wondering what the fuzz is about.My D3 and D3s start to go dark at the bottom at 1/200, so are only safe to use at 1/160. so actual, clean 1/200 sync is fine with me. and honest...
but then I just bought the D800E.

September 13, 2012 6:35 PM  
Blogger Scott Gant said...

Not sure if they've fixed the 5DMkII sync or not, because I just now did a test. Shooting at a blank wall at 1/200 at f11 at ISO 100, no banding. I got banding at 1/250, but not at 1/200 at all.

The Lumopro 160 was at full power too, though I was shooting straight on my camera's shoe. I have a Pocket Wizard III, but my other one is out. Would it have made a difference shooting via the PW? Is this where the 1/160 "true sync" coming into play?

But honestly David, getting back to the D600, I fail to see a problem between 1/200 and 1/250. I know you're speaking from your experience, but perhaps if you get the time (lol, I know, probably never have free time), perhaps you can show us the problem between only having 1/200 (or 1/160) VS. 1/250.

September 13, 2012 7:13 PM  
Blogger Allen McInnis said...


Years ago I had a camera that sync'ed at 1/200, it was a train wreck.

I fully agree that it is a deal breaker. I am shocked Nikon would even go there in 2012.

September 13, 2012 9:45 PM  
Blogger DrTom said...

Hi David, thank you for sharing your knowledge and opinions with us.

Like you I have a D3. When using a SB-700 Nikon Speedlight, if I set the sync speed at 1/250, or shorter, it will revert to 1/200, when I turn the SB-700 on.

I cannot set the sync speed to less than 1/200 with the SB-700. Maybe that's a shortcoming of the SB-700 that I did now know about, until just now.

Thanks again,

September 14, 2012 12:49 AM  
Blogger Clement said...

I was hoping that Canon would be pushed by Nikon to raise the sync speed. I was also hoping that with the OCF trend that you've contributed to promote, manufacturers would hear us. It turns out the exact opposite happened; Nikon is mimicking Canon and the 5D mkIII has more sync issues than the 5D mkII...It's time to create a union David!

September 14, 2012 1:13 AM  
Blogger m. m. k. kim said...

It hurts me too see so many comments made by people whom they have no idea what the author was initially talking about. To simply put, it is not just about the "reach" or "Power." 1/200 just doesn't cut it when you need to "stop" and action. Get it?

September 14, 2012 1:16 AM  
Blogger Clement said...

I was hoping that Canon would be pushed by Nikon to raise the sync speed. I was also hoping that with the OCF trend that you've contributed to promote, manufacturers would hear us. It turns out the exact opposite happened; Nikon is mimicking Canon and the 5D mkIII has more sync issues than the 5D mkII...It's time to create a union David!

September 14, 2012 1:16 AM  
Blogger Wolfgang Kratky said...

An argument that hasn't been brought forward yet is the sync speed as maximum shutter speed in relation to focal length regarding the much higher resolution.

With 24MP you can't deal with 1/focal length as minimum shutter speed, you nearly have to double that to get an appropriate result without (photographers) motion blur.

So every 1/3 step you win/loose will definitely influence the quality of your image.

September 14, 2012 2:54 AM  
Blogger Kuz9 said...

its very tiny DSL Full frame in the world

September 14, 2012 4:47 AM  
Blogger Blonde Woman Stamping said...

Surprising, and sad, that both Nikon and Canon are not getting it. If they made full-frame DSLRs with a (true) sync speed 1/500 they'd sell a gazillion of them.

September 14, 2012 8:34 AM  
Blogger Levy Carneiro Jr. said...


regarding the electronic shutter on the Nikon D90,
could you please clarify where is this setting in D90's menus?


September 14, 2012 9:24 AM  
Blogger Jake said...

The reason for the slower sync is a good one, and Jürgen seems to be the only one who appreciates the challenge.

To achieve a 1/250th sync the curtains must be able to traverse the height of the sensor in < 1/250th of a second, so that the first curtain is fully "open" before the second one has to begin closing.

One metric used to evaluate sports cars is the 0-60-0 test. Start from a dead stop, accelerate to 60mph, then hit the brakes and stop again. The faster a car can do this the better. Well, every time you take a picture with a DSLR each of your curtains do a more extreme version of the same thing, starting from a stand still, accelerating at extremely high rates to a top speed, and then going through the whole process in reverse to slow down to a stop before it crashes.

Now, I think Jürgen Kaspar is off by a decimal point, in that the average speed of a shutter is 43.2 km/h not 432. (That's 27 mph), but the mechanical challenge is still severe. Your shutter curtains each have to go from 0 to something like 50mph and back to 0 over the space of 24mm. They have to do that hundreds of thousands of times without failure and without slowing down appreciably. And, they have to do it without introducing vibrations into your camera body large enough to blur your picture. This is, almost certainly, (though I've never designed an SLR) the greatest mechanical challenge in your camera and not something that can be improved without spending huge amounts of money on researching the materials and mechanics used, and a lot of time and $$ testing what you come up with to verify that it will in fact last hundreds of thousands of cycles.

September 14, 2012 9:40 AM  
Blogger Matthew R said...

geesh. Hatin' on the 1/200. For what it's worth the new Sony RX1 has a leaf shutter so the maximum flast sync is 1/2000 of a second. With a fixed 35mm f2 think of all of the lit narrow DOF portraits you can do outside! And, it's a bargain at just under $3k. (Just kidding)

But seriously, I shoot outside all the time with my, ahem, Canon and with my strobes and dummied speedlites I can jump the sync a bit. That 1/3 of a stop has never been enough to make me want to jump ship.

September 14, 2012 9:57 AM  
Blogger Jake said...

Jürgen Kaspar is the only one so far to hint at the critical point... Making a shutter move fast enough for 1/250th sync (just for example) is very VERY hard.

While the math is off by a decimal point (it's 43.2 km/h not 432) Jürgen Kaspar is correct that the laws of physics are not your friend if you are trying to design a focal-plane shutter. Nikon Canon etc can no more easily "increase the sync speed" than Ferrari etc can easily "increase the 0-60 time" of their cars. It takes a lot of time and a lot of money to get small improvements.

Yes, you can get 1/250th with a crop sensor, but that curtain only has to move 63% as far as is only about 40% of the size of a full frame curtain. Lighter curtain moving a smaller distance = higher sync speed.

September 14, 2012 10:01 AM  
Blogger TanoyQuadro said...

i cant understand why this 1/3 stop can be an issue.if you are willing to buy a camera with this caliber, you should @ least know how to post process. this solves all the issues you are talking about here.

September 14, 2012 1:00 PM  
Blogger Jürgen Kaspar said...

Your are right from mm to m = /1000 and not 100 as in my original post

24mm * 500 (for a Sec.) * 60 (for Minute) * 60 (for a hour) /1000 (for Meter) /1000 (for Kilometer) = 43.2 km/h

And if someone needs quicker sync time, you can use for example Laica S2 with central shutter ;-) thats works with every shutter speed per design

September 14, 2012 1:56 PM  
OpenID 4bdb17de-fe97-11e1-8749-000bcdcb471e said...


If I typically am using PocketWizards for my flash photography, and use the High Speed Sync capabilities that come with those, is the 1/200th really going to be an issue?

Thanks so much for the work on your Blog. It's a great resource and excellent contribution to the photo community.


September 14, 2012 2:09 PM  
OpenID 4bdb17de-fe97-11e1-8749-000bcdcb471e said...


If I typically am using PocketWizards for my flash photography, and use the High Speed Sync capabilities that come with those, is the 1/200th really going to be an issue?

Thanks so much for the work on your Blog. It's a great resource and excellent contribution to the photo community.


September 14, 2012 2:13 PM  
Blogger caprae said...

The one thing that bothered me the most was just the three frame bracketing. Anxious to see low light abilities vs D700.

September 14, 2012 2:23 PM  
Blogger Veri and Rasho said...

David, so I guess you won't be happy with Canon 6D either and it's 1/180 sync max? ;)

September 15, 2012 2:57 AM  
Blogger Kristyanna Virgona said...

David, can Nikon change the sync speed with a firmware update ? My D7000 is 1/250 & 1/320 (auto FP) sync speed and goes up to 1/8000 the D600 only will go to 1/4000? and you have high speed Sync of the D7000 you can shoot at 1/8000 with flash I thought that it was cool when I tried it. I would have considered the D600 if it came out before I got the D7000 in March 2012

September 15, 2012 11:21 AM  
Blogger Ric Cederholm said...

So is this the max sync speed even if shooting in HSS mode? If not, I would not be too sure if it would be an issue for me (with the Canon) as I have TTL triggers that shoot in HSS. Then again, I am not an expert on the topic, so please help me understand if I am off base.

September 15, 2012 12:16 PM  
Blogger Mr. Dag said...

Would someone mind giving me a little background (and basic, admittedly) understanding of the high speed flash sync that Nikon and Canon's have, past 1/250? I don't know really get why anyone can't just use this functionality?

And what does choosing the 1/250 or 1/320 sync speed mean on the D800 (and I presume D700/600) mean in light of the above?

September 15, 2012 8:16 PM  
Blogger Mr. Dag said...

Ok, so I'm going to answer my own question after doing some research.

Regarding sync speeds past 1/250, 1/200 or whatever is possible for each camera, this is the fastest it is possible for a strobe to hit the sweet spot when the shutter is fully open. The first curtain opens and the flash fires before the second shutter curtain closes. High speed flash, above 1/250, generally means extending the flash--making the flash burst several times-- through the whole shutter cycle. This is why the flash range gets cut short: because more power is being used to make several burst, rather than just one big one.

I'm sure that this is bit obvious, but for those who needed to learn the basics, I hope that this helps.

September 16, 2012 2:02 PM  
Blogger Clement said...

@TanoyQuadro I've seen people doing all sorts of crazy stuffs with Photoshop, but I have yet to see someone mimicking light. That's absolutely impossible to change an ambient/flash ratio as you're suggesting.

September 16, 2012 2:37 PM  
Blogger Marc said...


I am totally with you on the slower sync. What a major disappointment! I was annoyed enough with the D7000 only syncing 1/250th after shooting for years with a D70s. It is slightly balanced by supporting Auto FP, but that just isn't the same thing. I need to put four speedlights together just to match what the D70s could do with a single flash. Many time I wish I could take the D7000 sensor and AF, and put it into the D70s body.

I think I'm going to look for a used D700 instead.

September 16, 2012 3:36 PM  
Blogger Davidson Meds said...

That's keeling stuff you put 1/128 of max sync ....and won't stop lowering the pain I will die before they come to do this, these manufacturers didn't stop shocking us for the sake of money.Do they know about us strobists? do they know about our grief?

September 16, 2012 4:41 PM  
Blogger Davidson Meds said...

That's keeling stuff you put 1/128 of max sync ....and won't stop lowering the pain I will die before they come to do this, these manufacturers didn't stop shocking us for the sake of money.Do they know about us strobists? do they know about our grief?

September 16, 2012 4:44 PM  
Blogger Lee Love said...

David I have to be honest and say you really disappoint me when you post articles like this. Instead of explaining the features and discussing the merits of cameras that sync 1/3 of a stop less you have made a mountain out of a mole hill.

Frankly you are better than this and with all of the contributions you have made to educating photographers about the value of speedlghts is this worthy of your followers?

We are photographer, our job is to make images given any situation. YOU of all people know this better than anyone. Yes the right tool for the right job but to comdem a product like this because of 1/3 of a stop and a crappy PC connection that no one uses. Really?

Your D3 syncs at 1/250 of a sec so what's the big deal. Your Phase One theoretically syncs at 1/8000 of a sec ( if you can find a radio trigger that will go that high) so sound like you have the right tool for any job.

You have been around long enough to know that product development is a series of battles between engineering, market forces and cost of manufacturing. There is and will never be a product that does every thing every one wants ant the price every one is able to pay.

The D600 is another home run for Nikon especially for wedding photographers and they will sell every one they can build. So I am at a loss to understand why you have missed this point and decided to blow a feature such as 1/200 vs 1/250 out of proportion.

You are better than this.

September 16, 2012 8:24 PM  
Blogger Lee Love said...

David, sorry I meant 1/1600 sync speed in my comments about the Phase One.

September 17, 2012 1:33 AM  
Blogger cream of beats said...

The 1/200 sync does suck, but doesn't the increased ISO and lower noise kinda make up for it? I'm going for a D700. The price is going down, and by time the D600 drops, the price will be even lower! I like paying cheap prices for a camera that I know will work! :)

September 17, 2012 7:59 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

It's a CCD vs. CMOS thing. Don't dump your D70/D40 etc. cameras. Read on:
From Dave -

From me -

September 17, 2012 10:18 AM  
Blogger Mark W said...

Wow, is there a trend starting, I noticed that the Canon budget FF just announced, the D6, has a synch speed of 1/180!

September 17, 2012 1:55 PM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


Really not sure what you'd have me say instead. It was a straight-shooting post, as opposed to one of the gajillion press release regurgitations that were up on the web ten mins after Nikon announced.

FWIW, Nikon manages this very well and very actively, which is why you see so many of those posts in the large-circ blogs. I opted out of that club with them a ways back.

Thing is, I wanted to love this camera—and was looking forward to it. But 1/200th degrades the usefulness of every flash I own.

To your point, wedding photogs, who mix flash and daylight routinely, will be especially hurt by this feature. So no, it's not not a home run, IMO. It's a miss. I now have zero interest in this camera, and was writing about why.

I am sure the camera will sell well, but it is obviously not an optimal choice for lighting photogs. Your disappointment and indignation notwithstanding, that's a straight call.

September 17, 2012 2:47 PM  
Blogger Clement said...

Heck Yeah David! We all know the engineering challenges yada yada... The point is, Nikon and Canon are adding a lot of shiny fluff to their cameras and they are neglecting the basics. I know it's more sexy to add GPS and wifi to your spec sheet, but I don't care about the icing if the cake is not good!

September 17, 2012 4:57 PM  
Blogger Sando said...

Hey David, just want to thank you!
I had pre pre-ordered the D600 (pre-ordered before it was officially announced and all the specs were out). The day the D600 got announced I got pissed 'cause it wasn't the camera I had hoped for. Not by a long shot! Maybe with the sync of 1/250th and a shutter speed of 1/8000th and a price that was slightly less it would have been. I would have payed around 1800-2000 (max!!). After writing my own post and reading yours I phoned around for about 3 hours and found myself an Nikon D700 which I bought the same day :)
I'm quite happy with it!
So thanks again for "reassuring" me (not that I needed much, after reading the specs of the D600 and seeing the price tag)!

Ciao Björn

September 17, 2012 7:49 PM  
Blogger belfox said...

Well, looks like the Canon users just got "Ni-conned" : the shiny new 6D sports ..... 1/180th sync speed.

Looks like Canon just out-dumbed Nikon on this one, giving it also a smashing 11-point autofocus system, clustered around the center of the VF, with only 1 cross-type sensor.

But Hail integrated WiFi and GPS (ask if I care a h...)

September 18, 2012 5:53 AM  
Blogger Lanskymob said...

The comments on this post range from semi-thoughtful to ridiculous. I bet my life that the vast majority of the pixel-peeping pinheads who are "just gutted" by this "loser" of a camera shoot nothing more interesting than color charts and nothing faster than their 1-year-old crawling after the cat. Every kvetcher on this blog who shot the Olympics in London for a major magazine, or who's on the sidelines of NFL games for a newspaper with a circulation over 2,000, take one step forward. Yeah, thought so.

September 19, 2012 10:00 PM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


FWIW, I was a working metro daily PJ for many years. And many of the people who read this site are pro photographers of one genre or another.

So please, we'd all very much appreciate it if you could give it your best effort and try and restrain yourself from being such an ass.


September 20, 2012 12:06 AM  
Blogger Lanskymob said...

David: I'm fully aware of your background. I respect your opinions, your work, and the countless posts that have made me a better photographer. I'm also aware that there are many folks that come to this site with years, if not decades of pro and semi-pro work behind them. But as the author of one of the most read photo blogs on the interwebs, you can't deny that the last 3-5 years has brought an explosion of enthusiasts who read and comment on sites like yours who are clearly more interested in telling everyone why camera X is better or worse than camera Y, or why camera X is an "utter disappointment" when, in many cases, they've never even shot a single frame with the camera! If wanting more intelligent comments from people like you and less comments from people who shoot color charts (and them blow them up to billboard-like proportions and tell me they can see the Virgin Mary in the noise) makes me an ass, well, then so be it.

September 20, 2012 10:25 AM  
Blogger Studio 64 Photography said...

Hi David,

just wondering if the 1/200 Sync Speed on the d600 is only affected with ON camera flash, as opposed to OFF Camera Flash???

I predominantly shoot weddings and about 99% of the time don't use on camera flash. Most of my flashes are off camera on monopods throughout the day.. and are on lightstands in the corners of the room pointed to the dance floor during receptions.

thank you for any help you can give me!

September 20, 2012 1:33 PM  
Blogger David Hobby said...


Actually, the second time you expressed your opinion without being an ass. It was tough at the end there for a moment. But you got out with your dignity intact. Bravo.

Internet comment sections can be tempting...

September 20, 2012 3:51 PM  
Blogger Paul Hance said...

@Lansky You are on point bro. It seems most of the folks are interested on the technical aspect of shutter speed, ISO, Fstop and the list goes on. It is annoying when I go on every blog or website and that is all folks are talking about. They are not focus on the creative aspect which is important to make an image. Anyway @ David thanks for the last comment after he clarify himself. When I read his first post I knew directly what he was talking about. for the folks that keep pixel counting focus on the creative aspect not pixel count.

Keep shooting folks not pixel counting.

September 20, 2012 8:33 PM  
Blogger Linda Matlow, PIX INTERNATIONAL (pixintl) said...

I received my Nikon D600 today and must say,I am impressed with the DR and low light handling of this camera.Not to mention,it's lighter than my D700.

I just wish there were lighter weight fast lenses to use with full frame.


September 21, 2012 3:48 AM  
Blogger David Rossberg said...

I seldom take the effort to post comments but I´ll definitely make an effort here to support good old Dave on this one.

Any tool that any pro or passionate amateur uses distinguishes itself in the details. There is a plethora of different cameras that basically does the same thing. What made you a Canon or Nikon user if not in small personal preferences?

One of the biggest draws for me to choose the 1D-X was double CF card slots. I hate SD cards with a vengeance, and one of the things that really put me of about the 1D-X was it's degradation of the x-sync speed (from 1/320 in MKIV to 1/250 on 1D-X).

Why I would never consider a Sony DSLR however great the other features might be? Electronic viewfinder.

September 21, 2012 7:05 AM  
Blogger Pieter van Leeuwen said...

When you dive deep into the menus there is one thing hidden that is very much in favour of the D600. It is filed under custom menus, item e4. It does something that every Nikon should do, but the ones i know don’t. It is about exposure compensation.

We have two button’s.Here is the problem it solves. We have two compensation buttons The +- one close to the the shutter release, the other is your flash button, or on your flash. The +- one on top of the grip does ambient and strobe at the same time. Strange isn’t it? Because we already have the other for the strobe. It would be beter to have one for ambient alone and one for strobe alone. Finally this can be done. That is the choice E4 gives you for the D600 and the D4 (sadly not the D800,the rumour goes it was finished eerlier than the d4). It does with ambient and flash exposure compensation what the clutch does with the engine and gears in your car.

How does this help you? Lets say you shoot a dance, or a board meeting or in general, an event. You have your strobe on ttl and the mode dail on A. Before you start out you take some shots and with the help of your exposure compensation buttons you choose a mix of ambient and flashlight that works for you for the event. Background two stops under? Can be done now.

September 23, 2012 5:45 PM  
Blogger Billy said...

That is terrible about the sync speed. Lets build a Ferrari chassis and plunk in a radiator from a Yugo. You get what you pay for I suppose.

September 29, 2012 6:34 PM  
Blogger Cc Ting said...

SB900 + 3DS will able to sync the flash @ 1/3000s on camera, and 1/1000s off-camera. That's really great for outdoor photography, without using any ND filter / reflectors. ND filter creates unnecessary side effects..

October 01, 2012 1:06 AM  
Blogger Royce Bair said...

My use for this camera would be for high ISO night photography because of its low noise abilities, so the 1/200th second flash sync is not a big issue to me. I've written a blog post about several of the night photography advantages of this camera:

Are the others out there interest in using this camera for its low-light capabilities?

October 01, 2012 12:15 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

My Fuji S5 Pro syncs at 250th of a sec.

October 05, 2012 7:53 PM  
Blogger Bill said...

Wouldn't it be nice if, when conditions exist, that when a higher sync would help, that a lens could be purchased with a shutter in the lens. When it's mounted on a camera, the fp shutter would move completely open as the camera would detect the lens with the built in shutter. This would allow flash syncs at all shutter speeds. I suppose firmware could be available to download to cameras that would work & photographers would be interested in investing in such lenses.

Just a thought to help!

October 07, 2012 1:46 PM  
Blogger xcski48 said...

i just find this all very helpful. i was looking @ the D600 and now, i won't. and will continue w/D200 and 300 until they think of something better.

October 18, 2012 6:11 PM  
Blogger Marty Ratcliff said...

For the life of me, I do not understand the animosity over the sync speed specs and I think that too many people are unknowingly being led into believing the D600 is a piece of junk. I'm with Lee Love back on Sept 16th when he said, "David, you're better than this." There's simply too much venom and not enough fact in this discussion. This has evolved into something not much better than reading scribbling on the bathroom walls in hopes of finding wisdom.

I've had the D600 since 1st day shipment and the 1/250th on-camera flash synch speed limitation has not been a problem -- but neither was it a problem on the D80. Because I almost NEVER use on-camera flash nor sync-cable-connected flash and that's the only time that the 1/250th sync is a limitation. With off camera wireless flash, the D600 syncs all the way to 1/4000th without even thinking about it as long as I'm using Nikon speedlights. And those are the only speedlights I have. I'm running completely wireless and completely off-camera in all situations where it matters.

What is important to me is that the D600 images with new 24-70/F2.8 FX lens are absolutely stunning. Even though my comparison context is the D80, these are still damned impressive images coming out of the D600 and everything I'd hoped in moving from DX to FX. And although my PocketWizard Flex/Mini's are in limbo until new firmware is available for the D600, the PocketWizards will soon enough have me back in business with longer-distance/non-line-of-site wireless triggering also using High Speed Sync all the way up to max shutter speed.

Honestly, if there's a specific environment (equipment combo, off-camera/on-camera, studio/outdoor high-noon situation) where THERE IS NO OTHER SOLUTION for circumventing the 1/250th sync speed, I think the readers of this discussion deserve to know some specifics rather than mere inuendo about how bad "it" is. Because it simply is not a fact that 1/250th sync is a limitation for all circumstances -- and I don't even belive that it is relevant at all for off-camera/Nikon speedlight TTL photography. Not for me.

As for the missing 13-pin flash sync port, that port is a convenience easily offset by the cheap AS-15 hotshoe adapter that provides a way to use sync cords. And if anyone is concerned inability to use on-camera flash while the AS15 consumes the hot-shoe, there are 3rdParty adapters that give you both a hotshoe & te synch cord. But I don't use tethered flashes or strobes anyway so this is also a non-issue for me and I believe for anyone to whom higher shutter speeds to kill ambient light matters. I'm doing that just fine indoors & out with off-camera flash.

And there was a comment from one contributor that complained that 1/250th was not fast enough to "stop action". That might be true in a non-flash environment, but when using flash photography, it's the flash that stops action, not the shutter speed. The only effect that shutter speed has in flash photography is the effect on ambient light levels. The flash duration is merely a fraction of virtually any shutter speeds and it's therefore the flash that stops any action in flash photograpy. And has already been established, High Speed Sync with Nikon speedlights off-camera provides perfect sync all the way up to max shutter speed.

I feel sorry for all those folks who are wasting their time waiting for the perfect camera when there's a perfectly USABLE D600 camera with a sensor peformance that's second only to the D800. All they need to do is slap an MB-D14 on there to get a decent grip size & better weight balance with those beautiful FX lenses and get busy taking pictures. When/if the perfect camera finally comes along they can sell the D600 used and get some of their money back.

October 31, 2012 3:11 AM  
Blogger Marty Ratcliff said...

As follow-up to comments just submitted for posting, I will go further and say that it seems that the 1/200th sync limitation(rather than the "1/250th" sync limitation that I'd inadvertently referenced throughout my post) is not even a limitation for on-camera speedlight. I just tried to force sync banding with a hotshoe-mounted SB900 and I can't get it to exhibit any banding or sync limitations at all as long you select a menu "e1" setting of "1/200 s (Auto FP)" or "1/250 s (Auto FP)" -- whether using manual or TTL -- it simply is not an issue. As I said earlier, I have only Nikon speedlights and all of them support Auto FP & High Speed Sync.

In fact, it seems to me that the only time the 1/200th sync IS an issue is when you either impose it on yourself by selecting the e1 menu option "1/200 s" (without Auto FP) or when you might attempt to use the pop-up flash or a speedlight that doesn't have Auto FP/High Speed Sync capability while using e1 option "1/200 s (Auto FP)" or "1/250 s (Auto FP)".

With an SB-900 mounted in the hotsoe:
If I select "1/200 s" (without the Auto FP option), the D600 acts the same as the D80 did -- the camera main dial won't let you select a shutter speed higher than 1/200th sec. Again, the fix is to set the option to one of the two Auto FP values, mount a Nikon speedlight or a TTL-capable radio trigger like the PocketWizard in the hotshoe, and then just crank up the shutter speed to whatever you need. It works like a champ.

October 31, 2012 3:48 AM  
Blogger Kevin Demsky said...

Hold on there don't know what you're talking about. The sync speed of this camera is 1/200.....and that is an indisputable fact. I am not a Nikon shooter, but I believe the Auto FP setting you reference in the second post is their version of high speed sync. All pro and prosumer cameras have this setting....which IS NOT what David is talking about. You might want to SLOW down and think about what DH wrote and then unbunch your panties.

October 31, 2012 11:13 AM  
Blogger Shawn R. said...

Um, where to begin.

Sure, using Nikon CLS you can sync using shutter speeds higher that 1/200th, but that is now a high speed sync and you are going to lose a TON of power on the flash. Plus, what if you are working with lights that are not CLS, say some monolights? There are lots of instances where the lack of higher sync speeds would be a huge benefit.

And, since you are apparently an expert on Nikon technology, I don't need to remind you that the 13pin connector(actually a 10pin) is actually for shutter release, GPS, and other functionality, not flash. So the AS-15 will not in any shape or form be a cheap solution.

I'm not saying the D600 is a bad camera. It looks great for the weekend warriors that don't push a camera that far.

October 31, 2012 12:46 PM  
Blogger Ray Rippel said...

Perhaps Mr. Ratcliff's mother's maiden name was Litella? (As in Emily?) :)

October 31, 2012 6:25 PM  
Blogger Marty Ratcliff said...

Well, I did correct the 1/200th sync speed reference in that follow up. And it must have been the 3am posting time that resulted in my mixing my thoughts on iPad connector changes with the camera sync connector -- if you ignore my reference to the "13-pin" I don't thinks it's a stretch to keep the comments in context: I meant just "sync connector".

I don't claim to be an expert on Nikon or anything else for that matter, just building the case that 1/200th sync speed does not have to be a show-stopper for anyone that doesn't want it to be. There are solutions to almost every problem --may not be the solution someone wants to hear, but that doesn't make it any less legitimate.

October 31, 2012 6:27 PM  
Blogger Kevin Demsky said...

Marty - you're still not getting it. High speed sync is not a full solution.....and it only works with a few select speedlites that can interact with CLS system. Most (many) photographers are utilizing strobes and the HSS capability will not extend to those units. The sync speed on this camera is 1/200s and that can present a problem to many advanced amateurs and professionals.

October 31, 2012 9:38 PM  
Blogger Raymond said...

Sounds like Nikon is trying to have people buy into their proprietary CLS lighting system. You can achieve syncs higher that way, but all in all I agree with you about the D600 in that the moment I read the specs, I read it as being a watered down D3X. Seems to me as well that the D700 is still a viable buy against the D600 even after being around for half a decade.

November 08, 2012 11:16 PM  
Blogger Scooby Miranda said...

so d600 does not have a flash snyc? i guess thats why they are selling hot shoe sync alternatives for nikon. and the 1/200th sync, with that said using the alternative flash hot shoe on manual mode gives you more sync speed. nikonrumors. check it out!

December 07, 2012 11:12 AM  
OpenID syncopated666 said...

My old Minolta Dynax 9 from 1998, synced flash(non hss) at 1/300 sec.

And it had hss(1998)

Yeah this was a great camera, still is, the best 35mm slr i have ever used(including the nikon f5/canon eos 1v)

I only commented, becuase it seems interesting how we were syncing flash at those speeds in 1998, yet we haven't really passed that speed even now, or have actually gone backwards.

December 22, 2012 6:59 PM  
Blogger oncire said...

just to let you know guys.. the nikon d600 can sync up to 1/4000 shutter speed.. when using external flash.. just enable "auto fp 320 or auto fp 250" also known as high speed sync in the settings.....heres how to set it

January 21, 2013 2:30 AM  
Blogger Terrence Flendersen said...

so d600 does not have a flash snyc? i guess thats why they are selling hot shoe sync alternatives for nikon. and the 1/200th sync, with that said using the alternative flash hot shoe on manual mode gives you more sync speed. nikonrumors. check it out! rental equipment chicago

January 22, 2013 11:49 AM  
OpenID blog-full-version said...

Where's the 10-pin connector? As a flash photographer this port is one of the indispensable connectors on my D3s. Are they disguising it in the GPS section on the left side of the camera? Hopefully I am just missing it.

I am looking at the photos and reading the specs on Nikon's site and don't see a mention of it anywhere. Hopefully I am just missing it.

February 05, 2013 10:54 PM  
Blogger Fokus Studios said...

Maybe I'm not understanding something but I believe that using the CLS you can sync at any shutter speed. So you can fire a flash in sync with the camera at anything up to the max shutter speed of e.g 1/8000th If you're using your pop up flash you're limited to 1/200 or 1/250th. So in other words I can fire my flashes in broad day light and crazy wide apertures with fast shutters to balance ambient and subject light

February 15, 2013 11:01 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Smith said...

The point is, Nikon and Canon are adding a lot of shiny fluff to their cameras and they are neglecting the basics.
Kitchen Worktops

April 13, 2013 2:56 AM  
Blogger cam kon said...

I have found that if I also set the ISO manually while I have Auto ISO selected on my D700, it sets the minimum ISO level. This is pretty neat since it means I can override the min shutter speed setting at will. I use the ISO setting button on the LH control group on the top of the camera.

June 22, 2013 4:35 AM  
Blogger Suzie said...
This article has the clearest response as to whether the D600 can cope with it's 1/200 limitation. I'm so glad I went ahead and bought one, I'm loving it!

June 27, 2013 9:20 AM  
Blogger Tony Mayo said...

In case you thought Nikon had started to care about Strobists, the D610 still syncs only to 1/200th. And reviewers still claim the 610 corrected the flaws of the 600...

October 09, 2013 10:05 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I still shoot my D70. As inferior a camera as it is now, I can get a 500 sync speed. It makes a huge difference over 200. I won't upgrade to a full frame from my 5100 until Nikon gives me my speed back!

This, and a few other reasons has me going backward and shooting film again. I find it liberating. Glad I kept my Nikon FE.

February 19, 2014 6:13 PM  
Blogger Joe Demanuele said...

My Nikon D600 has the option to use 1/250 instead of 1/200 as the maximum syn speed but to be honest I have not checked what they do and why there is this option. When I take portraits out doors I slap on the trusty SB800 flash gun and it gives me speeds up to 1/4000th of a second. The power decreases dramatically at higher shutter speed. This happens because of the way the system works. However it works for me as all I need is just a little light to add a catchlight in the eyes and lift some of the shadows. I use flash compensation to around minus 1.5 stops. However if I had a camera with a real sync speed that is very high I would try my hand at shooting portraits outdoors with powerful flash so as to be able to darken the background by bathing the subject with flash.

August 08, 2014 9:26 PM  

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