Nikon D600 vs D800 vs D7000 Comparison with Pictures

Nikon D600 vs D800 vs D7000 size comparison
From left to right: Nikon D800, D600 and D7000; shown at equal scale.

The Nikon D600 sits within the Nikon DSLR lineup between the high-end DX D7000 and the professional D800 full-frame. It is literally in the middle, in size, weight in addition to its price. For years, The idea of putting a full frame sensor into a DX-size DSLR body has been imagined, but until now it was only a dream. In building the D600, Nikon has taken one of the most popular enthusiast cameras in the D7000 and shoehorned a state-of-the-art 24.3 megapixel full frame image sensor into its body.

The D600 is nearly as wide and equally as deep as its FX counterpart the D800, but it has shaved off nearly half an inch in height. It still retains a 100% viewfinder and pop-up flash. And all three cameras use the same battery.

D800 D600 D7000
Price, MSRP in US Dollars
As of September 13, 2012
$2995 $2095 $1195
Weight, body only
(with battery and memory card):
Height 123mm
4.8 inches
4.4 inches
4.1 inches
Width 146mm
5.7 inches
5.6 inches
5.2 inches
Depth 81.25mm
3.2 inches
3.2 inches
3 inches
Construction Magnesium-alloy body Magnesium-alloy top and back, polycarbonate front Magnesium-alloy top and back, polycarbonate front
Battery EN-EL15 EN-EL15 EN-EL15
Max Resolution 36.3 MP (FX)
15.4 MP (DX)
24.3 MP (FX)
10.3 MP (DX)

16.2 MP (DX)
ISO Range
(50 to 25,600)
(50 to 25,600)
(100 to 25,600)
Sensor Dimensions 35.9mm x 24mm 35.9mm x 24mm 23.6mm x 15.6mm
Sensor Format FX FX DX
Maximum image size
7,360 x 4,912 (FX)
4,800 x 3,200 (DX)
6,016 x 4,016 (FX)
3,936 x 2,624 (DX)

4,928 x 3,264 (DX)
Card Slots 1 SD, 1 CF 2 SD 2 SD
Continuous shooting
(at max resolution)
4 fps FX
(6 fps DX)
5.5 fps FX
(5.5 fps DX)
6 fps DX
Shutter rating 200,000 actuations 150,000 actuations 150,000 actuations
Intervalometer Built-in Built-in Built-in
Electronic virtual horizon Yes Yes Yes
Viewfinder 100% coverage
0.7X magnification
100% coverage
0.7X magnification
100% coverage
0.95X magnification
Shutter speed 1/8,000 – 30 seconds 1/4,000 – 30 seconds 1/8,000 – 30 seconds
Battery Life
(per charge)
850 shots 900 shots 1,050 shots
Connectivity USB 3.0 interface USB 2.0 interface USB 2.0 interface
Video Output Uncompressed clean HDMI 1080p 8 bit (4:2.2) Uncompressed clean HDMI 1080p 8 bit (4:2.2) HDMI output at 1280×720 with controls overlaid
Autofocus system 51 focus points
(15 cross-type)
AF fine tuning
39 focus points
(9 cross-type)
AF fine tuning
39 focus points
(9 cross-type)
AF fine tuning

19 thoughts on “Nikon D600 vs D800 vs D7000 Comparison with Pictures

  1. My D600 arrives today, 9/20, and I can hardly wait!
    I was a Nikon guy for many years and they lost me to the Canon 5D and 5 D Mk II and now, won me back.
    This is a properly designed fully featured body to hang top glass on, to me, perhaps the best technical/financial combination for a working pro. Time will tell, as will I.

  2. I think Nikon has done an excellent job on the D600 however at over $2000 it is hardly an entry level camera unless this is being said because it is a low priced full framed. I have been using DX Nikon Cameras since the D70 was first introduced and most (but not all) of my lenses are DX which for me means that I will stay with my D7000 for the foreseeable future. ( I keep a camera for numerous generation changes so that when I do buy up it represents a real advance….I moved from my D70 to a D7000 ) My D7000 does everything I need and much more. I can see certain advantages for a FX for some shooters but I do photography as a hobby and just cannot justify the cost of a move up for what I view as a slight improvement over my D7000. Both the D600 & D7000 share so many characteristics that it would not be enough bang for my buck. The D7000 is an amazing camera which allows me to customize everything important to my shooting style and produces amazing pictures for me. I wonder if Nikon has finished with their pro DX cameras and if the D300s was the end of that line. It seems like there isn’t much room left for a D400 which would have been nice for those with older DX cameras wanting to move up to a Pro DX body however in reality the D7000 is so close to a Pro DX that it might make more sense for those interested in a D400 to wait for a replacement D7000 as a D400 may never exsist.

    • IT will be interesting to see where Nikon takes the D7100/D400. “Entry-level camera,” “entry-level DSLR” and “entry-level full-frame” are different things. The D600 is entry level FX. It’s a new segment because all previous Nikon full-frame digital cameras were professional level cameras. The D600 is aimed at amateurs and enthusiasts and is seen as an upgrade path for DX users. Upgrading from a D7000 is certainly expensive when you add new lenses to use its potential. The D600 DX crop is only 10MP and in that sense would be a downgrade unless you make an investment in lenses as well.

      • Exactly, right now I have a mix of DX/FX lenses but mostly DX which will keep me shooting DX into the near future. As I replace lenses in the future (and I don’t expect this to happen quickly) I will most likely replace with FX glass which I can use on my DX D7000. That way at some distant point I will be able move to FX or DX depending on my needs. I expect a lot of people may adopt this practice which may hurt the DX lens market however as I said previouly I am extremely satisfied with my D7000. I do admit I have never used a FX so maybe I just don’t know what I am missing but likely what I would enjoy the most would be the larger & brighter viewfinder. I have viewed photographs taken by my D7000 compared to a D3 and don’t see a difference for the type and size of photos I take. The future is changing and should prove interesting though.

  3. Since this is comparison of top 3 Nikon prosumer cameras, let me ask as the obvious question – which camera has the highest resolving power? I don’t care abour mega pixel blah blah and or sensor size blah blah! I care about the fundamental thing that matters to landscape photographers… how much details the sensor can resolve (given top of the line prime lens, let’s say 50mm 1.4). No one wants to give a straight answer to this simple question. My understanding is that it has to do with number of pixels per square cm (pixel density) and D600 has less density than either D7000 or D800 (do the math if you have doubt). In fact D7000 will have about equal density as D800. Curious minds always want to know 🙂

    • D800E will resolve the most usable detail in a given sensor area even with a slight disadvantage in pixel density vs D7000, 4.6 vs 4.3 micron pixels, but it lacks the traditional anti-aliasing filter so you get more detail on the pixel level. I would argue that for a landscape photographer megapixels do matter provided you have the right lens to use the sensor area available. Unless you are limited by a lens (a nature photographer shooting their longest telephoto) and need to crop then pixel density makes more difference. If you only care about pixel density the D3200 beats them both. Is this a theoretical question, or does it apply to a real situation?

      • Thanks for the reply. This is not a theoretical question. I mostly do nature/landscape photography with wide angle lenses, currently use fuji S5 pro (dx sensor). Now that dynamic range of these new cameras is getting close to Fuji, I want to upgrade. Cost is always a factor, so if D7000 provides almost same resolving power as D800, then I see no reason to spend $2000 more. As you mentioned, D3200 is very interesting since it has the highest pixel density for least money. DR of D3200 is also camparable to these three. Looks like D600 is kind of stuck in the middle. Those who want to optimize price to performance ratio will stay with D3200/7000. Those who want top of the line performance will take D800. I am just thinking out loud, hope you don’t mind :).

        • It’s an interesting approach but resolving power alone probably isn’t the best measure for your use. If you shoot wide angle, FX format is a benefit. Wide angle DX lenses are not the greatest when it comes to IQ, and due to crop factor the good (FX) wide angles end up not so wide on DX. Lack of wide prime lenses remains a huge shortcoming with DX. But given cost as a consideration, the difference in IQ may not be worth 2-3X the price to go FX body plus lenses. If you are shooting macro or telephoto, then your pixel density approach is better suited.

  4. What you are saying about megapixel vs lens quality is what I have believed for a long time. High quality glass either DX or FX is equally or more imporatant than the megapixel count especially with the current level of DSLR cameras being produced. Lots of resolution on sensors however many people are finding that this in camera resolution is showing up lens shortcomings. I have forgone camera purchaes and tried to put my money into lens quality mostly DX as that is what I am using. This is why I am suggesting that it will be interesting to see where Nikon is going with DX moving forward. If FX is where they plan on spending R&D money on future lenses and cameras then we will all have to rethink our future purchases. With my mix of DX/FX lenses it makes sense to keep shooting DX and to make any future glass purchases quality FX so that when I do need a new camera I have more options and not to limit myself. I prefer landscape photography & wildlife so the crop factor has it’s drawback with wide angle but works great on my telephoto shots. For me I am most interested in seeing where the future is headed with DX/FX. I think times are a changing but I am uncertain how or by how much right. It just makes sense to make yourself somewhat flexable. I am a Nikon user and would be unlikely to change to another system so at least that simplifies that part

  5. My initial comments about resolution were spot on. One camera review site has posted resolution chart from d600, d800 and d3200. I saved full size charts on my computer and then enlarged them for pixel peeping. D800 has the best resolution followed by D3200. D600 does not look good in comparison, you can see jaggies and abrupt changes when curved figue is enlarged (for example number 3). Try it out if you are curious. However, this is pixel peeping stuff so take it for what it is worth. It just proves one thing, D3200 is the real surprise (for the money).

  6. i have the d800 and my wife, the d7000…….and although i get more detail and resolution, her pics are more beautiful, with great depth of color….more 3 dimensional effect….maybe i can change my settings to simulate hers, i don’t know yet….anyways, the d7000 is a great camera…maybe one of nikon’s best for the price….

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