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Why I wont purchase a NEW Nikon D4s

I would really like to own the Nikon D4s. My main reason is for when I shoot fast action, and I am not always able to see through the view finder.

Nikon D4s

Here is an example of when I could have used it. I shot this BMX shot, I was holding the camera so low, and pointing it up at the rider.


This would have been so much easier with the Nikon D4s shooting 11fps. But I used my Nikon D810 in 1.2x crop mode mode with 6fps, took a few tries but I got a useable shot.

Ok so far looks like a good fit right? Well your right! So why do I not want to buy it? Is 16mp too little? Not at all, in fact, it could be more than enough. Confusing huh?

Two.5 main Reasons:

Number 1: It is 16mp, and when I Point - Click - Pray, I like to use a wider lens, and then crop to what I need. If I crop a 16mp in half, I am 8mp (just a rough reference) This just does not work well for large prints, that is, no one wants to buy a low res photo from me so they can print it on a wall or in their sports store. I know some say even 8mp is enough, well do me a favor, tell my clients that, because they want high mp, and thats what they pay me for.

Number 2: Also because its 16mp, but my reason is noise. Sometimes I have to really push it, and shoot so high ISO that noise is obvious, but I can usually get away with it by down sampling from 36mp to 24mp. Who knows, maybe I should rent a D4s, and check noise for myself.

Number 3: I am just scared. $7,000 ($6,499 + tax + insurance) is a lot to put down on a camera body, regardless of how valuable it is. So I am scared to put $7,000 into a D4s, only to have the Nikon D5 or what ever the D4s replacement is, be released with a 24mp or greater sensor, and that be the camera that is a better fit for what I am trying to do. Then I have a $7,000 brick because no one wants to buy a used 16mp camera for over $5k. Sure a brick is useful, you can build a house, a fireplace, etc.. But I am a photographer, not a stone mason.

So this is why I will not be purchasing a Nikon D4s. This does not mean its not a great camera, in fact, its an amazing camera. The Nikon D4s will continue to be one for a long time.

It is just not a good fit for my workflow. In fact, many say a pro doesn't need high mp. Could be true, could be false. The fact is, it does not matter if true or false. I cant sell lower res photos, and it doesn't fit my normal workflow

What matters if it fits your workflow. I don't care if some super pro comes up to me and says pro's don't need high mp, the bottom line is, I can get paid more for a higher mp photo, bottom line.

There was a shot I did, and it turns out, we actually wanted a cropped center piece for a magazine cover, guess what, since I had a 36mp source image, the center turned out to be 8mp. Still plenty for 300dpi printing.

Some times, I just don't know how the photo is going to be used, and I am forced to shoot wide, and crop later.

Well, those are just my reasons, but like I said, I really want one. But it doesn't fit my workflow or revenue stream. But, I do want one.

Mike Bradley

Author: Mike Bradley

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