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Nikon Note

January 8, 2012

The linked post from ExtremeTech.com describes the new Nikon D4 camera, a high-end DSLR aimed at professional photographers. Being a Nikon owner, I’m very interested in this snazzy new camera, although with a nearly $6000 price point, it’s clear I will never own one. Nonetheless, it’s nice to read about it, drool a little and see what new features are coming around. According to the article, “The Nikon D4 SLR is groundbreaking for its combination of performance features. ” [all italics are added by me to call out excerpts from the article]

The article, “The Nikon D4 DSLR: Is ISO 200,000 in your future?” is authored by David Cardinal (@DavidCardinal on twitter), and does a nice job of briefly but comprehensively covering the subject. As referred to in the title of the article, the D4 can support up to 204,800 ISO in a pinch. The routine ISO max of the unit is 12,800! Cardinal explains that Nikon’s sensor is moderately rated at about 16 megapixels, allowing it to utilize large pixel sizes to extend ISO sensitivity. Neat trick!

Another interesting feature is support for XQD memory card. This article, also from ExtremeTech, discusses that card format. The long and short is that the new format should better support faster transfer to the card, now that the size of captured files is growing so large. As Cardinal notes, “Smaller, faster, and more rugged than CompactFlash cards, and much faster and higher capacity than SD cards, its supporters hope XQD will become the new standard for pro cameras. It’ll certainly generate a new round of memory card sales.

Cardinal also discusses the autofocus, shutter lag and video capture capabilities of Nikon’s D4. Some images of the product round out the coverage. Clearly, there’s a lot to be impressed with. He sums up the new camera with this paragraph:

It was twelve years ago when Nikon revolutionized photography with the Nikon D1 — a 2.7MP camera with noticeable shutter lag and quality images only up to about ISO 200. At the time most of my fellow pros thought that digital would never replace film for them. Now, most of them haven’t shot a roll of film in years. The D4 is basically an order of magnitude better in every respect than the D1, showing how far the industry has come in a relatively short time.

The article is a great peek at the Nikon D4, if you’re not already familiar with it. It’s well done, and I recommend it. It’s also easy to recommend the camera, based on the description in the article. I just can’t help wondering if maybe they didn’t misplace the decimal point in the price…

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One Comment
  1. The most interesting point I see is that using the central focus points, lenses will focus with a low aperture of f/8. Meaning a 2.0x teleconverter will be guaranteed to focus at f/4. Not always the case with existing cameras.

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