I don’t usually create blog posts talking about a specific piece of equipment, but in this case I am so stoked on Nikon’s new cameras I just thought I would put a blurb up on the blog here about the Nikon D4 sitting on my desk. The image quality is superb and the video capture features are pretty impressive (for a DSLR). I have the D800 on order as well so it will be very interesting to see how these new cameras perform. Of course, I will have full reviews of both the D4 and the D800 in my upcoming Newsletters. Look for a review of the D4 in my Spring 2012 Newsletter coming out here in the next few months. You can check out all the specs on these cameras on Nikons website.
In the last ten days or more that I have had the camera I have been very impressed with this new pro offering. As you might expect, the image quality is superb—as confirmed by DxO Labs, which rated the new D4’s image quality as third only to the Nikon D800, which got first place in their tests, and the Phase One IQ180 Digital Back. It beat out a host of medium format cameras in terms of image quality though it only has a 16 MP sensor, which is saying a lot. Nikon now has four cameras in the top ten on DxO Labs top-rated cameras.
There are some on the internet talking about how the D4 image quality isn’t much better than the Nikon D3s, but from what I have seen it is better in almost every respect. Sure the high ISO noise is not that much improved from the D3s, but considering the image file size is 4 MP larger (16 Mp vs. 12 MP), I find it amazing that they were able to keep the amount of noise in the images at high ISOs on par with the D3s. The Nikon D4 will be the low light camera to beat in terms of low noise at high ISOs. So far, the image quality I have seen from this camera at all ISOs up to 12,800 is brilliant. At ISO 12,800 the lack of noise is astounding. While I was wishing for a 24 MP pro body, with the same high ISO noise characteristics of the D3s and the ability to shoot at 10 fps, the resolution of the D4 and the image quality is a nice update.
The video capabilities are also far superior to anything Nikon has ever done on that front. The video capabilities, which were highly anticipated, have lived up to the hype. I have been duly impressed with the video quality straight out of the camera. It beats anything I have seem from any other DSLR, including the Canon 5d Mark II. In my testing so far the video footage is tack sharp and has very little noise at high ISOs. And the crop factors (1X, 1.2X, 1.5X and 2.7X) along with the clean, uncompressed 1080p footage make this an extremely capable HD video camera. I am definitely looking forward to shooting more motion projects with this camera, and with the forthcoming Nikon D800.
You can bet that I will continue to run a lot of tests on this camera before my next assignments. I will say this though, with the camera firing at 11 frames per second it sounds like a machine gun going off. I can’t wait to shoot some serious action with this puppy! Stay tuned…more to come soon.
Pictured above: Nikon D4 with the AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G lens