So they do downsampling until the camera they want to be better is better... don't know.... sounds strange, but is not subjective at all
They are using the case where you are using both cameras to print out an image of the same size as their rationale.
They've been downsampling for as long as they've been doing sensor reviews.
The significance of that is that an 8MP image fills an A4 page at 300dpi.
So their "normalisation" is "downsize to fit on a piece of paper that people will print on at home."
That seems like a perfectly sensible thing to do to me.
So what does it mean? It means that the image taken with the D800e will look better when you print it out on your A4 printer at home than if you used the 1DX. Or for your magazine or...
If you have ever actually done any REAL printing, you would understand how ludicrous this statement is.
I've been printing my own photos for about six years now. I've used several dozen different types of papers, including purely natural fiber papers as well as papers with OBAs, from matte to semi-gloss/luster/satin to gloss papers. I've used papers from Hahnemuhle, Ilford, Red River, Breathing Color, Canson, Moab, and a whole host of other brands. I've printed on Canon and Epson printers, with Lucia, Lucia EX, and a range of UltraChrome inks. So when I say the following...it comes from a fairly long-term experience.
Dynamic range in print has nothing to do with the dynamic range of the original file. Print DR ranges from less than 5 stops to maybe a bit more than 7 stops on the BEST
papers with PHENOMENAL
L* and DMax. Such papers are either carefully crafted natural fiber papers with a very neutral, very bright white point, or they are papers with OBAs that have exceptional white points (and are usually on the cooler side.)
Black depth has to do with DMax, which is dependent upon both the paper and inks used, as well as the density and consistency with which those inks are laid onto the paper. Getting really crisp, "high" dynamic range in print has to do with how you print, on what paper you print, and the quality of the inks you use. To get the best "dynamic range" in a print, and that's a term we rarely actually use (DMax, or minimum reflectivity, is really what us printers are concerned with...the density of the ink and the ability of an ink+paper to discern fine differences in tonal levels even at maximum density.) You need over 97% reflectivity at L* and DMax of at least or better than 2.3 to get really good "dynamic range" in a print.
Even when you find a paper that has a proper ICC profile for a high quality ink jet printer, you still have so little dynamic range that to make the most out of your images, you have to process them very carefully to compress even the ~11 stops of DR in a Canon file or, worse, the 13 stops of DR in a Nikon file, into nearly HALF that much space. Furthermore, when your compressing all the extensive dynamic range and color information in one of those amazing images from either Canon or Nikon files, you have to make sure the gamut of your working image fits within the gamut of the paper and printer/ink. If you do not take the time to manually shift the tones and colors in your images to fit within the gamut of your print, you will often end up with blocked blacks (very poor tonal range in the deep shadows on the printed page...subtle changes that may appear on screen with an original RAW will all simply end up a muddy dark blackish brownish smudge...even with the best of printers and the best of papers), or funky color shifts where out-of-gamut colors were shifted into the gamut of the paper and printer/ink via ICM.
When it comes to REAL print...the original files don't matter a wit, really. They usually end up so heavily processed, either manually by the printer, or automatically by an ICC print profile and the ICM engine to shift color around so it fits within the gamut of the paper and inks, that the original capabilities of the cameras are so far removed as to be moot. And that's for high density, high resolution photographic ink jet printers. Commercial magazine publications rarely come close to the kind of color reproduction capabilities or ink droplet densities of high end ink jet printers (they simply operate in a different way, and usually use just your basic CMYK instead of the 10 or 12 different colors used in ink jets).