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Information about Nikon's new D4
With the announcement of the D4 in January 2012, this pages moves from being a rumour page to having release info and links to news, reviews and updates.
Rumours for the next big Nikon DSLR are on our Nikon D5 and D4x page
Key D4 Specifications:
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London, UK, 6th January 2012: Nikon today announces the launch of the D4, its new flagship D-SLR for photographers who are looking for the ultimate digital SLR camera to revolutionize photography.
“The introduction of the Nikon D4 sets a new benchmark for photography,” says Kentaro Kusakari, Product Planning Manager, Nikon UK. “We’re proud to be launching a new flagship model that exceeds the capabilities of its world renowned predecessor, the Nikon D3. This new camera has been designed for class leading professionals looking to push the limits of photography and improve their workflow. We’re confident that the Nikon D4 will help take them to the next level.”
Uncompromised Image quality—Exceptional speed
Engineered to deliver remarkable image integrity in the most diverse lighting conditions, the D4 offers blisteringly fast fps performance and sets a new benchmark in low-noise performance. The 16.2 megapixel FX-format (full-frame) CMOS sensor with fast channel readout delivers up to 11 fps—faster than any other Nikon DSLR camera.
Super-charged EXPEED3 image processing engine
Thanks to Nikon’s next-generation EXPEED 3 image-processing engine, the D4 makes light work of multiple data-rich tasks without sacrificing the speed and quality that pros are accustomed to. High-speed 16-bit image processing follows the 14-bit A/D conversion to deliver submission-ready JPEGs straight out of the camera. Performance is never compromised, even when undertaking the most data-intensive tasks. Images boast faithful, well-saturated colour and natural depth. Even when shooting in dim lighting at high ISO sensitivities, the camera’s intelligent, performance-proven noise reduction lowers noise without degrading image sharpness.
Broadcast quality video
For professionals whose workflow demands video, the D4 offers all the flexibility required for a wide variety of movie applications. It’s large format movie shooting at its best, with a comprehensive variety of frame rates.
Multi-area mode: Full HD (1080p) recording is possible in both FX and DX based formats as well as in native Full HD (1920×1080) crop.
High-fidelity audio control: responding to feedback from the industry, the D4 introduces new possibilities for D-SLR audio recording that enable your movies to sound as good as they look. Aside from the external stereo microphone input, an audio out for external headphones lets you fine tune audio in isolation.
Uncompressed HDMI output: for those who need the purest video output for professional quality editing, the D4 offers the possibility to output the uncompressed live view to external recorders and monitors. The first time this has been possible in an SLR camera, data is output at 1080i (Full HD) at the designated image size and frame rate. Data output can be scaled down if necessary and is clean of the information overlay that can be simultaneously displayed on the camera’s TFT monitor.
Convenient custom controls: live view operation is enhanced thanks to convenient custom controls. Instead of rotating the command dial, power aperture enables smoother aperture control via assigned buttons on the front of the camera. Index marking enables important frames to be tagged in the timeline during movie recording, which makes for easy location during editing.
New levels of speed and accuracy
When it comes to nailing decisive moments, the D4’s enhanced auto operation gives photographers a clear advantage.
Advanced scene recognition with 91K-pixel RGB sensor: Nikon’s revolutionary Advanced Scene Recognition System now incorporates the newly designed 91,000-pixel RGB sensor that meticulously analyses each scene for outstanding accuracy.
3D-subject tracking is particularly improved when shooting and tracking smaller subjects. Human faces are detected with startling exactness even when working in real time through the optical viewfinder. This level of detailed scene analysis is also utilised to support more accurate autofocus and auto exposure, even under the most challenging lighting conditions.
Advanced Multi-CAM3500FX AF Sensor Module: Nikon’s highly acclaimed Multi-CAM 3500FX AF system —with individually selectable or configurable 9-, 21- and 51-point coverage settings — has been re-engineered for faster subject detection.
The autofocus sensor module and algorithms significantly improve low light acquisition sensitivity capabilities down to -2 EV (ISO 100, 20°C/68°F). All 51 focus type sensors are fully responsive with any AF NIKKOR lens f/5.6 and—for the first time—this superb performance does not end at f/5.6 apertures.
Powerful AF sensors compatible up to f/8: the D4 maintains the power of the eleven central AF sensors, including one cross-type even if the combined open aperture value is f/8. A big plus for shooting sports and wildlife, this delivers a new level of detection potential when combining, for example, a 600mm f/4 AF-NIKKOR lens with a NIKKOR 2.0x teleconverter. If the combined aperture value is between f/5.6 and f/8, you even have the power of fifteen central AF sensors available, of which nine are cross type sensors.
Faster total workflow speed
The D4’s speed runs across its entire workflow.
Newly developed Kevlar/carbon fiber-composite shutter unit: the new, highly durable shutter unit offers a standard life cycle rating of 400,000 releases, with a maximum shutter speed of 1/8000 to 30s and flash synchronization at up to 1/250 sec. An intelligent self-diagnostic shutter monitor and a drive unit reduce the demand on power when the shutter is raised for extended periods during movie shooting.
Fast response: start-up is approx. 0.12 seconds , release time lag is minimised to approx. 0.042 seconds (equivalent to that of the D3S), with approx. up to 11 fps capability in FX-format and all crop modes.
Storage media: the D4 offers two card slots. One for high-speed CF (UDMA 7) cards and one for high-speed, high-capacity XQD card slot.
Connectivity: a powerful data communication and control system makes both wired and wireless LAN file transfer faster and easier than ever. Wireless LAN support is available via the compact, newly designed WT-5 Wireless Transmitter, which features HTTP and FTP connection modes and also allows for the simultaneous release of several cameras equipped with WT-5. HTTP mode has also been designed to work with iPhone screen resolutions. For the first time in a Nikon camera, a wired LAN connection is integrated into the camera body.
Always up to the job
Every millisecond can count, and the D4’s improved operability helps photographers respond quickly to changing situations.
Intuitive horizontal and vertical control: each orientation has identically laid-out controls, conveniently placed so that the camera may quickly become an extension of your hand whether you shoot in landscape or portrait.
Glass prism optical viewfinder: offers approximately 100% frame coverage and 0.7x magnification (50mm f/1.4 lens at infinity, -1.0m-1). The high eyepoint design of Nikon’s viewfinders is renowned for minimizing visual fatigue when using the camera for extended periods of time.
Dual-axis electronic virtual horizon: offers accurate confirmation of level shooting by letting you check the LCD monitor, or the viewfinder, for both the camera’s position in relation to the horizontal plane and its pitch (forward or rear rotation).
Direct access to Picture Controls: via a dedicated button, rather than the menu. Picture Controls let you customize the look of your stills and videos by fine-tuning parameters such as sharpness, saturation, and hue.
Complete control over workflow
The D4 is built for speed, but not for speed alone. Readiness and versatility go hand in hand with control options that can deliver a real advantage when time is of the essence.
Time-lapse movies: the D4 extends the popular time-lapse photography function by saving images as a movie file in the camera. With playback rates from 24 to 36,000 times faster than normal.
HDR (High Dynamic Range): shoots one overexposed and one underexposed frame in a single shutter release. The range can be widened by up to 3 EV for different looks, full of saturation and tonal gradation. The smoothness of the edge where the two exposures meet can be adjusted for a more natural look.
Refined colour temperature control: enables minute control over white balance. The monitor hue of live view and the resulting image’s white balance can be adjusted so that the two are aligned. Colour temperature can be manually set in 10-Kelvin increments, or in mired units.
Four image area options: you can choose from a variety of image crop modes, all visually masked in the viewfinder. 5:4 (30.0 x 24.0 mm), 1.2x (30.0 x 19.9 mm), and DX-format (23.4 x 15.6 mm).
In-camera editing: captured images and movies can be altered and edited in camera and on the fly if required. Retouch menus include an array of useful features such as NEF (RAW) processing, resize, distortion and perspective control just to name some of them. On top of that it has the ability to designate the start and end point of movie clips all at once, in order to save them more efficiently.
Compact WT-5 Wireless Transmitter (optional): attaches to the camera’s designated interface connector and is powered by the camera body. It features HTTP and FTP connection modes and allows for the simultaneous release of several cameras equipped with WT-5.
GP-1 GPS unit (optional): records location information such as latitude, longitude, altitude and time (UTC) as ‘geotags’ in the image data (Exif) and allows simultaneous operation together with the WT-5.
Compact Stereo Microphone ME-1 (optional): records clear sound while significantly reducing mechanical noise.
Nikon SB-910 (optional)—Unparalleled lighting performance: offers versatile i-TTL for on-camera or wireless flash control, refined operability and a powerful guide number of 34/112 (ISO 100, m/ft, STD, FX format, zoom 35mm). Menus and controls have been improved for more operational ease. Hard-type incandescent and fluorescent colour filters are included, which can adjust your D4’s white balance instantly.
Capture NX 2 (optional)—Fast, powerful and creative image processing: to accommodate the imaging power of the D4, Capture NX 2 is faster than before and boasts full 64-bit compatibility.
Camera Control Pro 2 (optional)—Versatile remote camera controls: aside from controlling exposure mode, shutter speed, and aperture, this software now offers numerous improvements to make the D4’s live view operation exceptionally smooth. New creative controls include remote start and stop for movie shooting and the option to switch quickly between stills and movies in live view.
ViewNX 2 (supplied)—Browse, edit, share and more: bundled, all-in-one software implements an easy-to-use interface and an array of editing functions, including basic editing of RAW files and D-Movies. Seamlessly integrates with my Picturetown, Nikon’s photo sharing and storage service
When There Is No Second Chance: The New Nikon FX-Format D4 Multi-Media Digital SLR is The Definitive Unification Of Speed And Precision
The New 16.2 Megapixel Nikon D4 Wields a Formidable Fusion of Swift Performance, Battle-Tested Technologies and Innovative New Features to Create High Caliber Photo and HD Multimedia Content
MELVILLE, N.Y. (Jan 5, 2012) – The new Nikon D4 digital SLR builds upon the legacy of the proven Nikon flagship D-SLRs before it, engineered to give today’s professional multimedia photographers a new apex of speed and accuracy with unparalleled image quality, low-light capability and Full HD video. The Nikon D4 hosts a multitude of advanced new features and useful functions that deliver speedy performance and amazing image quality for when missing the shot is not an option.
Every aspect of the new Nikon D4 D-SLR has been designed to emphasize rapid response and seamless operation to help professional photographers consistently capture incredible content. Nikon’s proven 51-point AF System has been further enhanced for maximum speed in a variety of challenging shooting situations, even at 10 frames per second (fps). Considered the new Nikon flagship, the D4 renders supreme image quality, a feat accomplished with a new 16.2-megapixel FX-format CMOS sensor, coupled with the latest generation of Nikon’s EXPEED 3 image processing engine to help produce images and videos with stunning clarity and color. Photographers are also able to shoot in even the most challenging environments and lighting conditions with the assistance of Nikon’s new 91,000-pixel 3D color matrix meter and a broad ISO range from 100 to a staggering 204,800 for low-light capture like never before. The Nikon D4 is engineered for the modern professional and incorporates never before seen HD-SLR video features for those who also need to capture multimedia content from the field.
“Speed without accuracy is irrelevant,” said Bo Kajiwara, director of marketing, Nikon Inc. “The status of a Nikon flagship camera is not given lightly; this next generation of Nikon’s most professional body exceeds the needs of a wide variety of both still and multimedia professionals that rely on Nikon to make their living. Besides overall performance and burst speed, the D4 provides Nikon’s most advanced AF system to date, as well as enhanced workflow speed to give professionals the edge in the field.”
Velocity Meets Versatility
Speed is a necessity for today’s multimedia photographer as milliseconds matter when the action commences. Whether an assignment relies on fast processing power, burst rate, write speed, enhanced workflow or even streamlined camera controls, the D4 is the epitome of professional-caliber photographic horsepower. Ready to shoot in approximately 0.012 seconds, the new Nikon D4 can capture full resolution JPEG or RAW files at up to 10 fps with full AF / AE or up to 11 fps with AF / AE locked. Immediately before image capture, the camera interprets data from the AF sensor, including subject color as detected on the 91,000-pixel RGB sensor, to deliver consistently tack-sharp focus frame after frame. Whether a photographer is shooting a full-court fast break under gymnasium lighting or the downhill slalom in the bright sun and frigid temperatures, the D4 will instill the confidence with consistently great results.
The Advanced Multi-Cam 3500 AF autofocus system is the next generation of Nikon’s proven 51-point AF system. The fully customizable system offers users the ability to capture fast moving subjects and track focus with precision or select a single AF point with pinpoint accuracy. The Nikon D4 D-SLR aligns 15 cross-type sensors in the center to detect contrast data in both vertical and horizontal planes. In addition to detecting each AF-NIKKOR lens with an aperture of f/5.6 or lower, the camera also utilizes nine cross-type sensors that are fully functional when using compatible NIKKOR lenses and TC14E or TC17E teleconverters or a single cross-type sensor when using compatible NIKKOR lenses and the TC20E teleconverter with an aperture value up to f/8, which is a great advantage to those shooting sports and wildlife. For maximum versatility in situations such as photographing nature from afar or competition from the sidelines, photographers are also able to select multiple AF modes, including normal, wide area, face tracking and subject tracking, to best suit the scene.
The Nikon D4 D-SLR also employs a new 91,000-pixel RGB 3D Color Matrix metering system that meticulously analyzes each scene and recognizes factors such as color and brightness with unprecedented precision. This data is then interpreted and compared against D4’s on-board database to implement various settings, resulting in vibrant images with faithful color reproduction and balanced exposure. In addition, this new AF sensor now has the ability to detect up to 16 human faces with startling accuracy, even when shooting through the optical viewfinder, allowing for correct exposure even when the subject is backlit. Additionally, to capture every brief moment from a bouquet toss to a photo finish under nearly any condition, the 51 focus points deliver fast and accurate detection down to a -2 EV with every AF-NIKKOR lens.
All of this image data is funneled through a 16 bit pipeline and are written to dual card slots which have been optimized for the latest UDMA-7 Compact Flash™ cards, as well as the new XQD™ memory card. The D4 is the first professional camera to harness the capabilities of this new durable and compact format, which offers blazing fast write times and extended capacity essential for multimedia professionals shooting stills and video.
Image Quality That Hits the Mark
The heart of the new D4 is the Nikon-developed 16.2-megapixel FX-format (36 x 23.9mm) CMOS sensor that provides amazing image quality, brilliant dynamic range and vivid colors in nearly any lighting condition. By achieving the optimal balance of resolution and sensor size, professional photographers will realize exceptionally sharp, clean and well saturated images throughout the entire ISO range.
Like the D3 and D3s before it, the Nikon D4 retains Nikon’s status as the sovereign of low-light capture ability, with a native ISO range from 100 to 12,800 ISO, expandable from 50 (Lo-1) to an incredible yet usable 204,800 (Hi-4). From a candlelit first dance to nocturnal wildlife, the large 7.3µ pixel size absorbs the maximum amount of light to excel in any situation. Additionally, the sensor’s construction features a gapless micro-lens structure and anti-reflective coating which further contributes to images that retain natural depth and tones with smooth color gradation. For ultimate versatility, photographers can also take advantage of the camera’s extreme high ISO ability while recording video.
Another factor contributing to the camera’s rapid performance and stellar image quality is Nikon’s new EXPEED 3 image processing engine that helps professionals create images with amazing resolution, color and dynamic range in both still images and video. From image processing to transfer, the new engine is capable of processing massive amounts of data, exacting optimal color, perfect tonality and minimized noise throughout the frame.
There are also a variety of shooting options available to help capture the highest quality images and video. In addition to standard NEF (RAW) files, the D4 is also capable of shooting smaller compressed RAW files to ease storage and speed up workflow. Users are also able to capture even more dynamic range with the in-camera High Dynamic Range (HDR) function that merges consecutive exposures. For deep contrast and further tonality, Active D-Lighting can also be activated during shooting for balanced exposures even in backlit scenes. Additionally, the camera features a dedicated button for quick access to Nikon’s Picture Controls, allowing users to quickly select one of six presets.
Professional Multimedia Features
The Nikon D4 D-SLR is engineered with innovative new features for the multimedia professional that needs the small form factor, low-light ability and NIKKOR lens versatility that only an HD-SLR can offer. The new features add functionality for those professionals looking for the best possible experience to capture a moment in Full HD 1080p video at various frame rates, providing footage that is more than suitable for broadcast.
Full HD video recording - Users have the choice of various resolutions and frame rates, including 1080p 30/24fps and 60 fps at 720p. By utilizing the B-Frame data compression method, users can record H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC format video with unmatched integrity for up to 20 minutes per clip. This format also allows for more accurate video data to be transferred requiring less memory capacity. The sensor reads image data at astoundingly fast rates, which results in less instances of rolling shutter distortion.
Full manual control of exposure – Shutter speed, aperture and ISO can be changed while recording to adapt to lighting and alter depth of field for professional cinematic results that help realize a creative vision.
Uncompressed output: simultaneous Live View - By using the camera’s HDMI port instead of the CF or XQD card, users can stream an uncompressed full HD signal directly out of the camera. This footage can be ported into an LCD display or appropriate external recording device or routed through a monitor and then to the recording device, eliminating the need for multiple connections.
Audio recording for professionals – The Nikon D4 features a stereo headphone jack for accurate monitoring of audio levels while recording. Output can be adjusted in up to 30 steps for precise audio adjustment. The D4 offers high-fidelity audio recording control with audio levels that can be set and monitored on the camera’s LCD screen. The microphone connected via the stereo mic jack can also be adjusted with up to 20 steps of sensitivity for accurate sound reproduction.
Multi-area Mode Full HD Video: FX/DX, and 2.7x crop mode at 1080p video modes - Whether shooting for depth of field in FX format mode, or looking for the extra 1.5X telephoto benefits of DX mode, the high resolution sensor of the D4 allows videographers to retain full 1080P HD resolution no matter what mode they choose. With the 2.7x crop, users can experience ultra-telephoto benefits in full HD resolution all at 16:9 aspect ratio.
Simultaneous live view output without display / simultaneous monitor - Shooters have the option to send the display signal directly to an attached monitor via the HDMI port. This signal can be viewed on the camera’s LCD screen and external monitor simultaneously. Additionally, the image data display can be cleared from the screen, to remove distracting data or when feeding a live signal.
Full-time AF - In addition to manual focus, four modes are available, including normal, wide area, face detection and subject tracking, which uses fast contrast detect AF to accurately focus while recording video and in live view.
New LCD screen - The large high resolution 3.2-inch LCD screen is 921K dots, and includes auto brightness adjustment. Users can also zoom in up to 46x to check critical HD focus.
Time lapse shooting - This new feature combines a selected frame rate and “shooting interval” in a dedicated time lapse photography menu. Playback can be achieved with a wide variety of speeds from 24x to 36,000x while producing a fully finished movie file output for faster multimedia workflows.
Remote shutter operation - Using dedicated Movie Custom Settings, recording can be set to be engaged by the shutter release button -users can now use a variety of remote accessories to trigger video recording.
NIKKOR lens compatibility - The highest caliber optics are vital to creating HD images and Nikon is the world leader in optics manufacturing with a legacy spanning more than 75 years. Nikon has a vast NIKKOR lens system, with more than 50 lenses with a variety of focal lengths and features, including VR II vibration reduction.
Professional Construction, Superior Operability
The reputation and respect bestowed upon a Nikon D-Series flagship camera is earned from those who use it; therefore the chassis of the Nikon D4 is machined from magnesium alloy for maximum durability and reliability. The body of the camera is sealed and gasketed for resistance to dirt and moisture, as well as electromagnetic interference. Photographers are able to easily compose through the bright optical viewfinder, which offers 100% frame coverage. The shutter has been tested to withstand 400,000 cycles for maximum durability, while sensor cleaning is employed by vibrating the OLPF. The self diagnostic shutter unit also encompasses a mirror balancer to minimize the residual “bounce” to enhance AF and extend viewing time. What’s more, the viewfinder is coated with a new thermal shield finish which works to resist overheating during prolonged use, enhancing overall reliability. Users can easily compose on the camera’s wide, bright and scratch resistant 921,000-dot high resolution 3.2-inch LCD screen.
The overall controls and operability of the camera has also been engineered with a renewed emphasis on speed and functionality. During critical moments, users will appreciate refined button layouts with renewed ergonomics, such as a quick AF mode selector placed near the lens mount for fast access on the fly. A new joystick style sub-selector is also placed on the camera’s rear for AF point and option selection, while vertical controls have been enhanced for improved operability. Finally, to continue the D4’s moniker of the best tool for just about any condition, key control buttons on the back of the camera can all be illuminated, making the camera simple to operate in complete darkness.
Nikon has also made enhancements to overall workflow, adding options to streamline the process and maximize shooting time. Users are now able to automatically generate IPTC data for their images and image sets, making organizing and chronicling images easier for both the photographers and their editors. A wired Ethernet port is also utilized so that a user can shoot tethered and transfer images easily and quickly to clients. Nikon has also introduced the new WT-5A wireless file transmitter, to transmit via FTP server or computer. The device can be set to transfer either automatically or manually selected images. This device also allows for remote operation of the camera using Nikon’s Camera Control Pro 2 software. A mobile application is also in development to control the camera using this accessory, which will include the ability to trigger the shutter and record video, making this a must-have remote accessory for many professionals.
Price and Availability
The Nikon D4 will be available in late February 2012 for the suggested retail price of $5999.95.*
To see the new D4 D-SLR and other new Nikon products, visit Nikon at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) at booth # 11039 from January 10-13th, 2012 in Las Vegas, NV.
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