Saturday, December 8, 2007

Nikon D300 as a higher one to Canon 40D and even to sensor’s mommy – Sony Alpha

Nikon D300 vs. Nikon D200After my terms of intimacy with the Nikon D300, I am looking to the Canon 40D and even to my favorite Sony A700 without being in transports of joy. Of course, Sony and Canon’s middle class SLRs are good, but D300 is excellent. This is a really high-middle SLR. However, Nikon D300’s price (abt. $1800 instead of $1300 for EOS 40D and $1400 for Alpha 700) is a little high too. For more details look through: Canon EOS 40D features, pros and cons. Let’s look through D300 features to gain a better understanding that this is a fair price.
Nikon D300's viewNikon D300’s main features
- New 12.3 effective megapixel Nikon DX Format CMOS image sensor with integrated A/D converter and increased bit precision of selectable 14-bit NEF (RAW) output (mfr. Sony*)
- Rapid 8 fps (with optional MB-D10 vertical power grip) or 6 fps continuous shooting for up to 100 shots at full 12.3 MP resolution
- The EXPEED image processing system is at the heart of the Nikon D300 ability to capture and process high definition image data so quickly. The EXPEED system includes both hardware and years of Nikon image processing ‘know-how’. The Nikon D300 EXPEED system features 14-bit analog-to-digital (A/D) conversion with 16-bit image processing, both of which contribute to delivering results with Nikon’s signature ‘look and feel’ of rich accurate colors, smooth skin gradations and exceptional detail
- New Scene Recognition System (the same as the Nikon D3); which uses data from the 1,005-segment RGB sensor to track a moving subject along the plane of direction within the frame. Complementing the AF sensor data with the subject tracking data calculated from the RGB sensor makes it possible for the D300 to select focus with great speed and precision digital SLR advances
Nikon D300 front view- Enhanced Color Matrix Metering II algorithms: metering data from the 1,005-segment RGB sensor is used for highlights areas detection; the range of brightness reproduces results of highlight analysis for more precise exposure control
- New 51-point AF system offers 15 cross-type sensors that maximize the potential of lenses with apertures as small as f/5.6, 3D Focus Tracking, 3 Dynamic AF modes using groups of 51, 21 or 9 points
- Large 3.0-inch LCD with 920,000 resolution, brightness adjustment, 170 degree ultra-wide viewing angle and tempered-glass protection; D300’s shooting information displaying on the rear LCD monitor or viewed in the traditional way on the camera's large top LCD panel and including shutter speed, aperture, the number of exposures remaining, buffer capacity, and AF area mode, is displayed in the monitor when the "Info" (Protect) button is pressed
- Dynamic Integrated Dust Reduction System with self-cleaning ultrasonic sensor unit minimizes degradation of image quality due to dust particles
- Rugged magnesium-alloy construction, advanced dust and moisture protection and a durable shutter mechanism tested to 150,000 cycles make the D300 a perfect choice for photographers who demand high performance and handling agility
- Faster start up, shorter shutter lag and viewfinder blackout versus the Nikon D200
* As for any speculations about using in the Nikon D300 the same as Sony A700 chip, it is a wrong idea. For more look at Sony Alpha A700: choosing a digital SLR for advanced amateurs
Nikon D300 CMOS sensor‘On board’ A/D converter as a rule for a good SLR
Just as in case of Canon 40D vs. 30D and Sony A700 vs. A100, the Nikon D300 is not a cosmetic upgrade, though in fact the D300 is virtually identical in appearance to the D200. And that's not the point that the SLR camera has a large 12MP CMOS sensor, a bigger 3 inch LCD with the Live view mode, world's first 51 focus points AF system, a self cleaning sensor with four active vibration points and an upgraded EXPEED processor. What is much important for me as for an engineer is the fact that now we have a sensor with not only extra 2MP, but with the analog-to-digital converter onto the chip. Finally, photographers have a new effective feature for a lower sensor noise without an extension of a sensor size. Moreover, it is a rule for middle-class SLRs. I have got a girl’s face from Nikon’s site and I am really impressed. As for putting 12 MP sensor into the Nikon’s body, there was such experience.Fujifilm S5 Pro sensor's view It resulted in the Fujifilm S5 Pro with Fujifilm SuperCCD SR Pro 12.3MP sensor – look at: Nikon D200 body gives birth to Fujifilm S5 Pro. Cheap D2Xs or how to win 12 megapixels from D200
Nikon D300 specifications
- 23.6 x 15.8 mm, 12.3MP Sony’s new CMOS sensor
- 4,288 x 2,848 max resolution
- Dust-reduction system with Self-cleaning sensor unit, image dust-off data acquisition
- Sensitivity: ISO 200 to 3200 in steps of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV with additional settings of approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7 and 1 EV (ISO 100 equivalent) under ISO 200 and approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7 and 1 EV (ISO 6400 equivalent) over ISO 3200
- CompactFlash (CF) Card (Type I and II, UDMA compliant), MicroDrive
- NEF 12-bit or 14-bit (uncompressed, lossless compressed or compressed RAW), TIFF (RGB), JPEG: JPEG baseline-compliant
- LiveView: Hand-held shooting mode: TTL Phase-difference AF with 51 focus areas (15 cross-type sensors), Tripod shooting mode: focal-plane contrast AF on a desired point within a specific area
- Viewfinder: SLR-type with fixed eye-level pentaprism; built-in diopter adjustment (-2.0 to +1.0 m-1)
- Auto focus: TTL phase detection, 51 focus points (15 cross-type sensors) by Nikon Multi-CAM 3500DX auto focus module; Detection -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100 at 20 degree C/68 degree F); AF fine adjustment possible. Focal-plane contrast [in LiveView (Tripod) mode]
Nikon digital SLR: let's fly- Supports HDMI version 1.3a; Type A connector is provided as HDMI output terminal; simultaneous playback from both the HDMI output terminal and on the LCD monitor not available
- Focus can be locked by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-servo AF) or by pressing AE-L/AF-L button
- When CPU lens is attached, lens aperture can be stopped down to value selected by user (A and M mode) or value selected by camera (P and S mode)
- NMEA 0183 (Ver. 2.01 and 3.01) interface standard supported with 9-pin D-sub cable (optional) and MC-35 GPS Cable (optional)
- Dimensions (W x H x D): Approx. 5.8 x 4.5 x 2.9 in. (147 x 114 x 74 mm)
- Weight: Approx. 1.82 lbs. (825 g) without battery, memory card, body cap, or monitor cover
- One EN-EL3e Rechargeable Li-ion Battery, MB-D10 Multi-Power Battery Pack (optional) with one EN-EL4a, EN-EL4 or EN-EL3e Rechargeable Li-ion Battery or eight R6/AA-size alkaline (LR6), Ni-MH (HR6), lithium (FR6) batteries, or nickel-manganese ZR6 batteries, EH-5a AC Adapter (optional)
D300 predecessor's viewConclusion
In my opinion, the Nikon D300 is a little heavy but it makes feel more of a camera. Of course, a camera has a good hand’s grip and feels great, which is to be expected from Nikon. The LCD screen is bright and has no motion blur. As for Live view mode, it is not continuous, as the camera must be focused before the screen will be enabled. It is not like a compact where images can be continuously taken with a screen. The D300 can be linked up to a PC and images viewed from its screen too when the camera is in tripod mode. As for comparison with the Canon D40 and the Sony A700, the Nikon D300 is not a digital SLR for beginners. This is an expensive device for some great lenses owners, such as 40D and A700. Therefore, especially with the price/quality ratio, this is a great SLR, but I would prefer the Sony A700 as Rebel XTi owner would prefer the Canon 40D. For more details about digital SLR cameras visit this page: Choosing a Digital SLR


SiR said...

I have read this post with huge interest. However Nikon D300 has an essential difference in the price ($400-500) against cameras Sony A700 and Canon 40D. I think, what is it payment for the most important advantage - lower level of noise (new CMOS sensor 12,3 MP plus 16-bit image processing). Right?

Best regards,
Mystery Photo

fototramp said...

To Sir
Your suggestion it not entirely right, because some money from this price you pay for a greatest (in its class) features set, some money your pay for an excellent SONY's sensor and a little -- for the name - NIKON.

gate valves said...

im thinking of upgrading to D300... or., if i have budget., id buy the D3