What I want to know, if anyone cares to explain it, is what exactly "16-bit processing" actually means. If it means that the camera's internal memory has a 16-bit address space, then it's completely meaningless mumbo-jumbo. If it means the ADC is 16 bits but the final image is stored as 14 bits, then they are throwing away 75% of the data captured (and a ton of wasted processing power) to save 12% of the space (4 MB, at best?), which seems like a Really Bad Idea for RAWs. So what's going on here?
internal processing, for applying gamma curves, etc., benefits from not having least significant bits truncated until the processing is finished.
Even PnS compacts, who only output 8b jpegs, often process 10 to 12 bits internally to reduce posterization and provide better tonal gradations than they would if they only processed 8 bits worth of data all the way from sensor to file.
As for this D600 rumor, I'd buy one in a snap and toss my 5D2 out with yesterdays lunch were it not for the pile of pricey Canon glass I have for it.
What Canon does to RESPOND to this third, kick-butt, FF-body within a year from their main competitor is what interests me more.
If Canon puts out (very soon please) a reasonably priced FF that has better IQ, (for those who don't know my posts that means less shadow noise at low ISO and more dynamic range) that may stop me from liquidating more of my Canon kit. That would also cause me a bit of confusion because I'll have TWO FF systems to choose from then. (Yes, I prefer Canon's lenses)
As it is now, there's only one FF body that doesn't let me down for IQ, and it's from the dark side.