September 12th, 2014

Nikon’s New D750 Brings Several Firsts to the FX Line

D750_24_120_front34l

Nikon rolled out the pre-Photokina red carpet for its newest full frame digital SLR: the D750.

Situated between the D610 and D810, the D750 will have several firsts for Nikon’s full frame lineup including a new 24.3-megapixel CMOS sensor, Wi-Fi capability, a vari-angle LCD and a new build that makes it the thinnest DSLR in the company’s lineup.

According to Nikon, the slender build is due to its monocoque design. The body features magnesium alloy parts integrated with carbon fiber in the front and grip assembly to make a light yet weather-resistant package. The vari-angle LCD screen will be 3.2-inches in size and feature 1,229K dots for high-resolution viewing.

The D750 features a native ISO range of 100-12800 and can extend as high as 51200 or to a low of 50. It uses the same EXPEED 4 processing engine found on the D810 as well as its 91,000 pixel 3D Color Matrix Matrix III metering sensor. There’s also a highlight weighted metering option for shooting spot-lit details against black backgrounds. D750_24_120_top_2

The AF system features 51 points including 15 cross type sensors, 11 of which are compatible with teleconverter lenses shooting at f/8 or faster. The camera’s Advanced Multi-Cam 3500-FX II AF system can track objects in continuous shooting mode at the camera’s maximum burst speed of 6.5fps in either RAW or JPEG. A first for any Nikon DSLR, the D750 can lock focus on subjects in as little as -3 EV illumination.

It features a maximum shutter speed of 1/4000, shy of the D810’s 1/8000 and it’s rated for 150,000 cycles.

Nikon also added a new clarity parameter to its picture controls to adjust mid tone contrast. Like the D810, there’s also a flat picture control to deliver more dynamic range during video shoots (ideal for color grading in post-processing). All the picture controls are adjustable in .25 increments.

As noted above, the D750 is Nikon’s first FX-series camera to offer built-in Wi-Fi. Using the company’s Wireless Mobile Utility App you can  transfer images to smartphones or use mobile devices as real-time viewfinders and/or remote triggers. With the UT1 communications unit and the WT-5a wireless transceiver, you can enable wireless FTP transfers or trigger and operate the camera in HTTP mode through a web browser (where you’ll see a real-time live view preview as well as have the ability to start and stop recording).

D750_back

Video Features

When it comes to video, the D750 borrows heavily from the D810’s feature set. It offers 1920 x 1080 HD video recording with a choice of 60, 30 or 24fps with full manual control over exposure settings. The Power Aperture function gives shooters the ability to seamlessly and steplessly open and close the aperture during recording, another goodie derived from the D810.

Video is recorded to the D750’s two SD card slots and can also be simultaneously output to external recorders and monitors via HDMI.

On the audio front, there’s a built-in stereo mic, external mic input, and a headphone jack for audio monitoring.

The D750 will ship this month for $2,295, body only. A kit including the 24-120mm lens will ship in October, though pricing wasn’t announced.

More Gear

AFS_20_1.8G

In addition to the the D750, Nikon added  the AF-S Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G ED wide angle full frame lens to its lineup. It’s the company’s first wide angle lens with an f/1.8 aperture. It features a seven blade diaphragm, two ED elements, two aspheric elements and a 77mm filter size. It will ship in September for $799.

Finally, there will also be a new speed light in the Nikon lineup. The SB-500 has a guide number of 24 at ISO 100 and covers a 16mm angle for full frame cameras (24mm for DX sensors) with a head that swivels vertically at a 90 degree angle and rotates at 180 degrees. It incorporates a 100lux LED for video lighting and accepts a pair of AA batteries. It will also ship in September for $249 with a small stand so you can mount it to a tripod or on a table top for off-camera use.

SB500_front34r

November 4th, 2013

Nikon Unveils Retro-Style Nikon Df Full-Frame DSLR with No Video Capture Mode (Hands-On Preview)

Nikon-Df_SL_50_1.8_SE_frttopA few days after the U.S. “fell back” and ended Daylights Saving Time for the year, Nikon turned back the clock in its own way with a new camera announcement: the distinctly retro, 16.2-megapixel, full-frame Nikon Df, which looks more like a classic Nikon film SLR than any digital SLR we’ve seen so far. The camera, which has been widely leaked in the last few days, uses the same FX-format (35mm-sized) sensor as Nikon’s flagship professional D4 DSLR but resembles a Nikon FM or FE film SLR from the 1970s or 80s.

I got some hands-on time with the new Nikon Df at a press briefing, under NDA, during PhotoPlus Expo last month, and found the camera to be an intriguing but slightly befuddling new DSLR for professional photographers and enthusiasts. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to take photos of the Nikon Df cameras shown to me during the briefing, so all the product images included here have been provided by Nikon.

Read more of my hands-on preview of the new Nikon Df here.

October 8th, 2013

Nikon D610 Full-Frame DSLR Announced

D610_24_85_front34rNikon just announced the full-frame, 24 megapixel D610—an evolutionary update to the D600. Naturally, the first thing some people will want to know is whether the D600’s dust/oil issues have been resolved. The direct answer is, we don’t know. When asked, Nikon gave the same response as it did earlier this year, which is essentially that a certain amount of dust is to be expected with any interchangeable lens camera and that if you can’t remove the debris, then send it to Nikon for service. However—and this may be the big news—the D610 is equipped with a new shutter mechanism which allows the camera to capture images at up to 6 frames-per-second (versus the D600’s 5.5fps frame rate). While Nikon says that the new shutter was implemented to gain the faster frame rate, if the online user reports of a correlation between the D600’s shutter and the accumulation of sensor dust and oil are correct then, yes, that issue may well be a thing of the past. And that’s good news all around because we think the D600 was—and is—a great camera.

The D610 uses the same sensor and offers the same features as the D600 but there have been a few enhancements in addition to the faster frame rate. For one, Nikon has updated the white balance algorithm for improved AWB performance. Although the D600 has a quiet mode, the D610 now has a quiet continuous mode, which will help wedding photographers, for example, stay on the good side of the officiate, as well as the bride and groom. We think the quiet continuous mode will also be useful when photographing performances and other events where you need some speed but want to maintain a low noise profile.

Otherwise the D610 is pretty much the same as the D600. That is, an affordable, full-frame camera with plenty of features, good performance. And we expect the D610 to deliver the same top level image quality as well.

The D610 should be available late October and is priced about $100 less than the D600 was when it was announced. For more information, visit: www.nikonusa.com.

Price:

Body only: $2000

With AF-S NIKKOR 24-85mm lens: $2600