Nikon D800 Video Performance Review

Better than 86% of Reviewed Camcorders

It's fair to say the Nikon D800 is one of the best DSLRs for video Nikon has ever produced.


It's fair to say Nikon has improved the video performance on its DSLRs quite a bit since the launch of the D90—the first DSLR that could shoot video—four years ago. It's also fair to say the Nikon D800 is one of the best DSLRs for video Nikon has ever produced. The camera surprised us with excellent motion and sharpness scores in bright light, as well as good results in our low light sensitivity test.

Motion & Sharpness

See our full "motion performance review":, including video clips.

Read our full "sharpness performance review":



Rolling shutter was present on the Nikon D800, but we thought the camera kept it under control better than the competition (we saw more significant rolling shutter on the 5D Mark III). We did see excessive moire when we tilted the D800 at an angle, however, and this issue was present on both handheld and tripod-mounted recording. The manual controls on the D800 are fine—you get full control over aperture, shutter speed, and ISO when you shoot video in manual mode—and you can adjust these controls during recording if you wish. The camera has no continual autofocus mechanism, like most DSLRs, so if you want to use AF during recording you have to deal with the abrupt changes in exposure that occur when you press the AF button.

The D800 may be the first Nikon camera that really competes with the top DSLRs from Canon and Sony when it comes to video. We liked the Nikon D4's video performance as well, but that camera's $6000 price tag places it out of reach for most consumers. The D800, mostly thanks to its full frame image sensor, isn't cheap either, but its price is very competitive compared to the Sony A99 and Canon 5D Mark III.

To read our full conclusions for the Nikon D800 including analysis of the camera's video handling and audio options, plus see sample videos and photos, visit the full review at "":


Get the
Nikon D800

Buy now at Amazon