Monday, October 8, 2007
The Best D-SLRs Get Better
In this year's most significant camera announcements for professional photographers, Canon and Nikon both have announced a pair of new D-SLRs
A new DX-format CMOS sensor features 12.3 megapixels and has an integrated A/D converter with your choice of 12- or 14-bit conversion. Internal processing is 16-bit. • A tick slower than the D3, the D300 starts up in a superquick 0.13 seconds (0.08 quicker than the D2XS), with a shutter-release lag of 0.45 ms and a viewfinder blackout of just
• Normal ISO range is 200-3200, with up to ISO 100-6400 possible
• The D300 can shoot 12.3-megapixel images at 6 fps (8 fps with the optional Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10).
• As with the D3, there are two Live-View modes: Handheld mode with standard 51-point phase-difference AF and Tripod mode with focal-plane contrast AF for maximum accuracy with still subjects. As with the D3, you can use Live-View remotely via PC with wired or wireless connection and optional Nikon Camera Control II software.
• Like the D3, the D300 employs Nikon's EXPEED image-processing concept that optimizes image processing for camera model, user characteristics and applications. Nikon intends to use EXPEED with all future digital models, SLR and Coolpix.
• A new Scene Recognition System uses information from the D300's 1005-pixel RGB sensor to optimize exposure, white balance and autofocusing.
• A magnesium-alloy chassis, enhanced sealing and 150,000-cycle shutter mean the D300 can stand up to harsh pro use.
• Nikon's first Self-Cleaning Sensor Unit uses four different frequencies to vibrate dust off the low-pass filter in front of the image sensor, a great boon to the user who changes lenses frequently.
• Images are stored on a CF card, and the camera can use the new high-speed UDMA CF cards.
• The D300 shares the D3's new Picture Control System, with four fundamental settings—Standard, Neutral, Vivid and Monochrome—and the means to adjust sharpening, tone compensation, brightness, tone and saturation as desired. If you have a D3 and a D300 (or two of either), you can transfer customized Picture Control Settings between them for consistent picture tone.
• The D300's new Multi-CAM 3500DX AF system with 51 AF points (15 of them central cross-type sensors that function with lenses as slow as ƒ/5.6) offers excellent AF performance.
• Active D-Lighting mode applies localized tone control to provide real-time highlight and shadow correction for better detail throughout the image.
• HDMI output lets you display images directly on HD television.
• A tick slower than the D3, the D300 starts up in a superquick 0.13 seconds (0.08 quicker than the D2XS), with a shutter-release lag of 0.45 ms and a viewfinder blackout of just