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  • Writer's pictureGilbert Carosin

An ode to a legendary camera, the Nikon d700 in 2023

Updated: Jul 5, 2023

girl posing eye close for a photo session with a white flower in her head
shooting the d700 in the studio

The year is 2023, digital photography as either entered a new era with AI or is simply about to die as a business model, everybody is now a professional photographer with a mirrorless camera and the latest plastic made ultra fast aperture and ultra sharp lenses. The sales speak for themselves Nikon is selling a huge amount of z8 and z9.

The marketing is so good that everybody claims mirrorless is the future ( so much for the Nikon f5 ) everywhere you look you find someone shooting with one these camera, and dslr are suddenly obsolete tech that nobody wants.

In this era of Ai, eyelash autofocus, 50 mpx camera lets have a look at my 5 years experience with a special camera that will NEVER be made again. The Nikon d700 is a 12 mpx camera with a unique sensor, its big heavy, built like a tank extremely solid ( unlike most mirrorless that we have now ) you could basically go to war with that thing, fight with it and take picture at the same time.

girl with black dress and curly hair smiling and posing
photo session with nikon d700 and 135mm f3.5 Ai

Where the d700 shines is actually its sensor and the amazing skin tone you can get with, the sensor has huge amount of micro-contrast, paired with the 135mm f3.5 Ai ( one of the best lenses created by Nikon ) it produced amazing pictures with unique colour that NO OTHER CAMERA CAN MATCH. All the picture you see on my website are also straight from camera with no or very little retouch ( contrast, expoure or slight cropping ) everything else including the amazing skin tone is the combination of this incredible sensor and the 135mm lens i use.

girl with purple hat posing in front of textured backdrop
studio session with the Nikon d700 and rotaux 53

In 5 years of use i have been published 8 time in magazine with this camera, and 12 mpx are way way more than enough for all my client ( 6 mpx are enough for the print my client do ), why would you want anything else, the camera is also very cheap, at 500 usd it allowed me to build my photo studio and invest in all necessary gear i needed, i am now the owner of a full running studio with high end equipment.

So you might ask what next, well in a time were i could easily invest in one of the newer mirrorless camera, i have decided to take a step back and move away from digital photography, in the coming months, i am converting to analogue photography and by 2024 i will only offer 35mm and 120 photography service. What will happen of my d700 i am not sure i might keep as a souvenir as it is responsible for the reputation of my studio.

Enter a new legend

As the photography world is changing drastically i find myself in a position where i absolutely don't want to move forward digitally , i feel a deep need to return to the origin of photography, to connect to the art of being a real photographer and for this reason i have acquired another legendary camera. The Nikon f5 is a 20 years old camera, i have been testing this camera for the past month and will start using professionally in the studio very soon in September. I will post picture from this camera shortly after September.

black and white picture of a ``nikon f5 film camera
nikon f5 a legendary camera

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