Updated (January 2012): Compare the Nikon D4 vs Nikon D800

Nikon D3S vs Nikon D700

Winner
Nikon D3S

89

Nikon D700

83

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3S

Low noise at high ISO
Low light performance
3,253 ISO
Rapid fire
Continuous shooting
9 fps
Great battery life
Battery life
4200 shots
High ISO (boost)
Light sensitivity (boost)
102,400 ISO
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D700

Viewfinder size
Large viewfinder
0.72x
Thickness
Thin
3"
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
External flash not needed
Fastest shutter speed
Fast shutter speed
1/8000 of a second

galleries

Explore our gallery of 48 sample photos taken by the Nikon D3S.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Nikon D700.

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D3S

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Battery life
Much longer battery life
4200 shots vs 1000 shots
Help
More than 4x more shots per battery charge
Movie format
Shoots movies
720p @ 24fps vs None
Help
Shoots HD (720p) video as well as still pictures
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
3,253 ISO vs 2,303 ISO
Help
The D3S has a slight edge (0.5 f-stops) in low-noise, high-ISO performance
Continuous shooting
Shoots significantly faster
9 fps vs 5 fps
Help
80% faster continuous shooting
Viewfinder coverage
Much better viewfinder coverage
100% vs 95%
Help
Around 10% better viewfinder coverage
Startup delay
Less startup delay
120 ms vs 400 ms
Help
3.3x less delay when turning on
Overall image quality
Slightly better image quality
82.0 vs 80.0
Help
Almost the same
Storage slots
Has more storage slots
2 vs 1
Help
More slots allows storing more images without switching memory cards
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
12,800 ISO vs 6,400 ISO
Help
The D3S's maximum light sensitivity is 2 f-stops better
Light sensitivity (boost)
Better boost ISO
102,400 ISO vs 25,600 ISO
Help
The D3S's boost ISO is 4 f-stops better
Nikon D3S Learn more about
the Nikon D3S

Advantages of the Nikon D700

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Size
Much smaller
147×123×77 mm vs 160×157×88 mm
Help
Around 40% smaller
Viewfinder size
Larger viewfinder
0.72x vs 0.70x
Help
Around 10% larger viewfinder
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
12.2 EV vs 12 EV
Help
Almost the same
Thickness
Much thinner
3" vs 3.5"
Help
More than 10% thinner
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Lowest price
Cheaper
$3,780.11 vs $4,994.99
Help
The best price we've seen is $1,215 cheaper (more than 20% less)
Weight
Lighter
1,074 g vs 1,240 g
Help
More than 10% lighter
Nikon D700 Learn more about
the Nikon D700
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent pro DSLRs, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D3S Nikon D3S 89
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      Color
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        vs
        83 Nikon D700 Nikon D700
        Retailer
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              similarities

              Compared to recent DSLRs

              Common Strengths
              Low light performance Relatively low noise at high ISO Help
              D3S3,253 ISO
              D7002,303 ISO
              Viewfinder size Above average viewfinder size Help
              D3S0.70x
              D7000.72x
              Weather sealed Weather sealed Help
              Shoot in extreme weather
              Focus points Many focus points Help
              51
              Startup delay Minimal startup delay Help
              D3S120 ms
              D700400 ms
              Viewfinder Both have pentaprism viewfinders Help
              Pentaprism
              Built-in focus motor Both have a built-in lens focus motor, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
              Autofocuses with more lenses
              Fastest shutter speed Fast max shutter speeds Help
              1/8000 of a second
              Common Weaknesses
              Lowest price Very expensive Help
              D3S$4,994.99
              D700$3,780.11
              Weight Heavy Help
              D3S1,240 g
              D7001,074 g
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Autofocus No video autofocus Help
              Manual focus only
              Size Large Help
              D3S160×157×88 mm
              D700147×123×77 mm
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              12.1 MP
              Movie format One shoots movies Help
              D3S720p @ 24fps
              D700None
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
              D3S12,800 ISO
              D7006,400 ISO
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur
              Screen size Very small screens Help
              3"

              Compared to recent pro DSLRs

              Common Strengths

              Snapsort is not aware of any interesting strengths shared by these two products.

              Common Weaknesses
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              15
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              D3S921k dots
              D700922k dots

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D750

              Nikon D750

              Pro DSLR

              $1,997 body only

              $2,697 with 24-120mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Nikon D610

              Nikon D610

              Pro DSLR

              $1,295 - $1,497 body only

              $1,649 - $1,997 with 24-85mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Nikon D7100

              Nikon D7100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $745 - $897 body only

              $989 - $1,197 with 18-140mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Dynamic range Has slightly wider dynamic range
              Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
              Viewfinder size Significantly smaller viewfinder
              Nikon D600

              Nikon D600

              Pro DSLR

              $1,357 body only

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Nikon D7000

              Nikon D7000

              Entry-level DSLR

              $649 body only

              $718 with 18-55mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Dynamic range Has slightly wider dynamic range
              Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
              Focus points Has slightly fewer focus points
              Nikon D800

              Nikon D800

              Pro DSLR

              $1,749 body only

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon EOS 5D Mark II

              Canon EOS 5D Mark II

              Pro DSLR

              $2,135 body only

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Built-in focus motor Doesn't have a built-in focus motor
              Focus points Has significantly fewer focus points

              Nikon D3S Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon D3X

              Nikon D3X

              Pro DSLR

              $6,837 - $6,843 body only

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Low light performance Significantly more noise at high ISO
              External mic jack Lacks an external mic jack
              Nikon D4s

              Nikon D4s

              Pro DSLR

              $5,997 body only

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Battery life Much shorter battery life
              Low light performance Slightly more noise at high ISO
              Nikon D4

              Nikon D4

              Pro DSLR

              $4,629 body only

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Battery life Much shorter battery life
              Low light performance More noise at high ISO

              Nikon D700 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              No significant competitors found that are specific to the Nikon D700.

              appearance

              Nikon D3S Nikon D700
              Nikon D3S Nikon D700
              Nikon D3S Nikon D700

              discussion

              Nikon D3S
              D3S
              Nikon

              Report a correction
              Nikon D700
              D700
              Nikon

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