Nikon D400 is Definitely Coming

Many of our readers are wondering if the Nikon D400 will ever see the light of the day, given that the Nikon D300s is now 4 years old. Nikon confused us with the D7100 announcement (see my review here) when it used the word “flagship” in its product page and announcement, something that once belonged to the D300s, the once DX flagship of Nikon. Because of this, and the fact that the 51-point Multi-CAM 3500 AF system that was only used on high-end Nikon DSLR cameras before, I interpreted the D7100 announcement as the merger of the camera with the D300s line, eliminating high-end / flagship DX line forever. However, after using the D7100 for a couple of months and shooting wildlife with it, I realized that the D7100 seriously lacks the large buffer required for fast action photography (even shooting in cropped mode and smaller RAW files) and its non-pro body build, with the absence of 10-pin connector and important buttons like AF-ON got me thinking about the potential release of the D400. So after a short while, I published an article titled “is there room for a Nikon D400?“, where I posted a poll asking our readers what they thought about the D400. It turned out that a lot of people want the D400, despite the release of the D7100.

Nikon D400

Things went quiet for some time and the topic revived last night, when the same source that leaked some info to me about the D400 and D7100 last year sent me an update about the upcoming D400. Apparently, the Nikon D400 has been pushed back at least twice now for several reasons. First, Nikon had some serious trouble with the supply chain when the floods devastated its Thailand plants. Most of the DX equipment was manufactured there (and many parts for the DX cameras and lenses were supplied by smaller companies in Thailand, which were severely impacted as well), so Nikon had to quickly move high-demand items off to other plants. The Nikon D300s was no longer selling well after the D7000 came out, so Nikon Japan decided to shift its short term focus to lower-end DX cameras instead. This basically explains the 4 year delay. Second, Nikon does not want to release the D400 until Canon is ready with its 7D Mark II, the only true competitor to Nikon’s sports and wildlife line. The current Canon 7D is also 4 years old now and it only received a major firmware update since its release date. The D400 announcement will be similar to what happened to the D600, when Canon simultaneously released the 6D at the same time – there will definitely be a Canon 7D Mark II announcement around the same time. Third, Nikon knows that the D400 has to deliver a large buffer with huge processing power in order to accommodate 24 MP files. Apparently, the current EXPEED 3 processor used on the D7100/D800/D4 is not capable of handling that much bandwidth, so Nikon engineers have been working on a new generation EXPEED 4 processor for the D400. This also means that the movie features on the D400 will be stronger, up to 60p in HD will be possible. Third, the 51-point AF system used on the pro cameras (and now on the D7100) is quite old, despite the fact that it got a slight boost with the introduction of the “Advanced Multi-CAM 3500FX” on the D800 and the D4. Nikon is apparently also working on a better and more advanced AF system, which is planned together with the D400 release (this explains why Nikon used the 51-point AF on the D7100). The Nikon D4s is also in the works with the same AF system, scheduled to be announced sometime in 2014.

Nikon was on schedule for an early D400 announcement in 2012/2013 time frame, but it pulled the plug and decided to focus on the D7100 instead (and the current focus is to push as many D7100 sales as possible). It turns out that the camera went through several iterations and the earlier features did not fly with the upper management of the company. The Nikon D400 should be a very strong camera with a very appealing feature set for sports and wildlife shooters. Some in-camera and firmware enhancements are also being worked on. No word on GPS/WiFi capabilities yet, that might be something still in the works. As far as the specifications, they have been slightly modified (new AF, D7100 sensor with no AA filter), but generally the same as posted earlier. I am also told that we should be seeing some great incentives from Nikon later this year, especially towards the holidays.

My source tells me that the approximate date for the announcement has been pushed to September of 2013, with a possibility of a 2014 Q1 announcement (if things do not go as planned, or if Canon 7D MK II is pushed to 2014). Let’s see what happens next, I am sure many wildlife and sports shooters will be excited to hear this news.

My personal addition: we should see some new DX lenses with this announcement.


Avatar of Nasim Mansurov About Nasim Mansurov

is a professional photographer based out of Denver, Colorado. He is the author and founder of Photography Life, along with a number of other online resources. Read more about Nasim here.

Comments

  1. 1
    ) Peter

    So a D4S and a D400! Hopefully I can grab a D3S for cheap when people upgrade! :)

    • 179
      ) Marcel

      i did it already… tired waiting for D400
      I paid 3000$ for machine still under warranty, having only 5000 cycle counts on shutter. Great deal, since here in central europe you can not really find one used….

  2. I will be very interested to see specs for D400 & D4s…

    • 108
      ) thomas

      D4s = d4 + d800 captor

      • 172
        ) Vince

        captor … you mean sensor, right ?
        You french, aren´t you ?

      • I do hope the D4s will not have the D800 sensor. I would like to see a better low light camera than the D4 (D3s), with a reasonable numbers of Mpx.

  3. 3
    ) Greg Heller

    Thank you for sharing that — it is indeed good news..

  4. 4
    ) Stefan

    Excellent news, Nasim!

    I can’t wait to see the new beast to compliment my D800.

    • 126
      ) KnudeL

      It’s “complEment” that’s usually wanted in so many photo forum texts.

      (-;

      • 127
        ) Stefan

        Well, thanks for correcting me.
        But, may be you also have “auto-correct issues” sometimes, typing from your cell phone. I said may be…

        • 171
          ) steve-O

          maybe vs may be
          The grammar police are out to get you, Stefan!

  5. 5
    ) William K.

    This is great news! A 24 MP with a buffer to handle multiple shot is a cool drink of water for sports photographers and the wildlife guys as well who felt they were getting neglected.

  6. This is fantastic, if true. I like my 7000 but have waited to upgrade it, and the 7000 isn’t pro-build. A pro-build body with big buffer, improved AF, and 24mp will be wonderful for sports and wildlife. An effective 450mm f/2.8 (using the 300/2.8)? Incredible. I hope the low-light ability is great … very important. This might keep me from having to buy a D4. D800 + D400 for action = perfect.

  7. 7
    ) StevenP

    My initial foray into the digital world, after being a film photographer for many years, was the D90. I realized, very quickly after its purchase that I had made a mistake. I should have purchased the D300s at the time. This was quickly validated when I purchased the D700 and found the control structure a significant improvement over that of the D90.
    There is room for the D400 which shares a professional layout and controls with the D800 and D4. I actually wonder if Nikon should increase the capability of the D5200 and eliminate the D7100 altogether. Do we really need 3 cameras in the consumer series?

    • Steven, I hate the current Nikon and Canon DSLR lines – they are confusing as hell, especially for a novice. Nikon should have 4 DSLRs max – entry-level DX, high-end DX, entry-level FX and high-end FX. Too many segments, too many cameras (and Canon is even worse!).

      • 20
        ) StevenP

        I would agree Nasim…and Canon is 10x worse with the T3, T3i, T4i, T5 and T5i just in the low end…not withstanding their weird naming conventions which have the 6D a lower-end camera to the 5DmkIII and the 7D even lower still.
        I am still loving my D700 and not yet convinced I need to move to the D800E. Using the money I would have spent there upgrading lenses and buying Singh-Ray filters (yikes!!!).
        Still want to know when the 300mm f4 VR is going to be released….

        • Oooh, 300mm f/4 VR! Sign me up! :-P

          • 45
            ) Jorge Balarin

            I agree.

        • re the comment here, in re DX vs FX: “I would pay for expensive DX lenses, as I suspect would many D400 users. If I can get the same quality from a physically smaller lens (and preferably lighter) why should I not be willing to pay as much?”

          Having added FX to my kit in the last year (D700 … love it though it’s old now, and now have a D800), I would only buy DX bodies for the 1.5x magnification factor for long lenses mainly. I got the 17-55 when I got a D7000, because I’ve always had pro lenses (25 years in newspapers). The 17-55 is no lightweight, but its performance quirks drove me crazy and I should have anticipated the move to FX and gotten the 24-70 instead. I did trade the former for that, and LOVE the 24-70. No comparison, for though the 17-55 was very sharp, it didn’t focus reliably in low light. Not only that, FX lenses work well on DX too, but not the reverse without compromises.

          It seems the trend is to full-frame sensors for dSLRs and smaller sensors for mirrorless and rangefinders like the Fuji X-Pro-1, for which several pro friends have abandoned their heavy SLRs. I know that for most uses, the larger viewfinder in FX makes a BIG difference to me, and the weight of the pro bodies and lenses, be they DX or FX, isn’t huge (can’t compare the D800 to the 7100, which is not pro-build.). imho.

          • 152
            ) Jaap Verbeek

            “… It seems the trend is …”
            Apart from photo industry marketeers, I wonder why anyone would give a rat’s ass about THE TREND in cameras? As if there were such a thing as a “fashionable DSLR”…

      • 49
        ) Jorge Balarin

        But something like the D700 would be great too. The D700 was not an “entry level” camera, but also was not a FX “flagship”, and its price was fair. I want something like the D700 in the FX line, because I can not afford an FX flagship. But of coures, Nikon is not in this world to please me : (

        • 51
          ) StevenP

          The D800/D800E are about the same price as the D700 when first released. The price will continue to drop as it reaches the mid-point of its lifespan. I have not used the D800 so I cannot speak to its capability, but the D700 is a fabulous camera that I continue to find new abilities…and this is 2 1/2 years since its purchase.

          • 59
            ) Jorge Balarin

            In Vienna, where I live, a D800-E costs now 3,174 euros. If you translate that price to american dollars it is a small fortune. The D800 costs 2,349 euros. I don’t understand why the “E” model is so much more expensier than the not “E”.

            • 61
              ) StevenP

              Yeah, here the 800E is $3,299 (CAN$) regularly, $2,999 for the D800. Heck, for the difference you could fly here to buy it. Let me know if you do and we can do a photo daytrip.

            • 84
              ) Ali Mirshahvalad

              I traveled many many countries in Europe and Asia likes Italy, Germany, France, Nederland, Denmark, Turkey, India and Dubai but I did not find any photography gear cheaper than my homeland, Iran.
              Every time I bought something abroad, i found it more cheaper inside. For example price of D800 with the official NIKON Guarantee is around Euro 2,140 = USD 2,780 (unfortunately D800E is not available yet!) and you can find more cheaper offers from small importers.
              I will be pleased if one of you gentlemen come here for gear shopping and phototrips! ;)

            • 85
              ) StevenP

              Oh my, inexpensive camera gear and pistachio nuts coated in lime juice. I am in!!!!!

            • 122
              ) Ali Mirshahvalad

              Your most welcome StevenP!
              Special pistachio coated with lime and extra Saffron! :D

      • 69
        ) Ertan

        It is a well known tactic: Market enrichment (don’t remember the actual term). You push as many types of camera as possible to the market so that every price range is filled by your product. I think Canon’s products are easier to choose with their same sensor but varying property set depending on the price range.

        • 73
          ) Peter

          I think the actual term is “market saturation.”

      • 75
        ) MartinG

        I agree there are too many. I would like to see only 6. Three DX: entry, mid point and pro. The same 3 categories are all you need for FX. The cycle should be to replace one in each group every year. That means a body could be out for no more than 6 years.

      • 103
        ) zoetmb

        I find the Canon numbering system far more confusing than Nikon, but Nikon will probably be far more confusing in the future because they’re running out of numbers in the midline. I think they both should have built FX/DX into the model name so it’s clear which sensor size you’re buying.

        Nikon has too many bodies only because they’re not depleting stock fast enough on the older models. But once those are gone, the line should be cleaned up: D3200 ($700), D5200 ($800), D7100 ($1200 and presumably eventually upgraded to a D7200), D400 (hopefully and priced around $1600), D600 ($2000 street), D800 ($2800 street), D4 ($6000) and possibly a future D4s.

        Traditionally, single digits are the pro models, three digits are the semi-pro enthusiast bodies and four digits are the amateur bodies. My bet is that within another year, we begin to see bodies with 2-digit designations. We saw that back in the film days beginning with the Nikon F90 in 1992 (although in the U.S., many of these bodies had an “N” designation, which Nikon did in an attempt to reduce import sales.) Also, in 1984, there was the FG-20.

        Marketing 101 tells you that you want to a) take all the room on the shelf so that your competitors don’t get it and b) have items at every price point. Based on that, Nikon is still missing some bodies, one of which can be filled by the D400 and they probably could also use a body between the D600 and D800 which would be the something like the D600 sensor in the D800 body, priced at about $2400. The problem is naming – unfortunately they already used the D700 name. They could call it the D900, but that would be confusing since it would sound like a D800 upgrade or replacement. There’s also a big hole between the D800 and the D4, but the market might not be big enough to support another body there. The worldwide market for Japanese DSLR cameras in 2012 was only 16.2 million. In the first three months of 2013, it’s only 2.6 million, down 23% from 2012, although some of the decline can be attributed to mirrorless, which sold about 600,000 in the first three months.

        • 136
          ) Iran

          Why do you think a d400 would be less then the d600? The d600 has bare bones components and were hoping the d400 has everything! D400 will be over 2k if it ever comes to market.

          • 150
            ) carri oosterbaan

            D400 supposedly will be DX and D600 is FX…

      • 151
        ) Joe

        I agree, the many models that each have out there is very confusing, an entry level DX & a higher end DX should be all & FX I think should be a higher end not an entry level!!

  8. 8
    ) MJohn

    The rise of the DX!!!

    • Or the demise, if Nikon/Canon decide to drop the ball on high-end DX. I hate the fact that Nikon and Canon rub against each other all the time – always said that the two are owned by the same individuals :D Not a coincidence when both release a high-res FX and budget FX at the same time…

      • 21
        ) StevenP

        My wife has the 5dmkII and we bought that camera because of the weight. She used my D700 and found it to be too heavy, so we went with the 5D. I wish, at that time, that Nikon had had a lighter-weight FX camera, may be a D700A which sacrificed the flash to lower the weight.
        Having used both I enjoy the Canon, recognize that they are competitive but find this US vs THEM to be annoying and stupid. I love the Canon lenses, her 70-300mm L series is incredible. Too much invested now to switch….

        • Steven, both Canon and Nikon have great systems. I loved the 5D Mark III and Canon does indeed have killer lenses. All I am saying, is that the two are not completely separate companies, as one might think :)

          • 42
            ) StevenP

            Yeah, I agree…they are like dysfunctional twins…doing things a the same time, but all the while claiming to be independent.

          • 71
            ) Roger

            Nasim, have you noticed that almost every gas station in the city raises its prices by the same amount simultaneously (20 cents per gallon on Tuesday morning at 10 a.m.)? It’s not a coincidence.

            But seriously, I hope your source is correct. I impulsively grabbed a D7100 and love it for wildlife shooting – but the buffer stinks and I’ll never be comfortable with the ISO/WB/QUAL buttons on the back. Give me a D400 with the same 24MP E-type sensor, sub-DX crop, buttons on the top left, and a large buffer, and I’ll buy one as soon as the QC issues are fixed.

  9. 10
    ) ralittle2

    Good news! However no mention of the body the D400 will be built upon; care to speculate? D7000-type won’t make many happy. Do you think that Nikon would surprise everyone with a D750 at the same time?

    • Same high quality build as the D300s, all magnesium alloy with AF-ON, 10-pin socket, etc.

    • And no, there won’t be a D750 as far as I know. The D600/D800 replace the D700 line, as far as Nikon is concerned…

      Again, it would be foolish for Nikon to release an FX DSLR that will threaten its D4 sales.

      • 53
        ) Jorge Balarin

        I don’t know. The people that would go for a D750 basically is not ready to pay what the D4 costs. It is not that I’m going to buy a D4 because there is not a D750 in the market. A D750 would be a multipurpose camera, while the D4 is a profi-photojournalist one. For me is far better business to do a quality product with a reasonable price, and sell it a lot, than to do a super expensive an elitist camera that only a few people can buy. We are talking about cameras and not cruiserships, were a single sell perhaps solved your life.

        With wich camera Nikon earned more money, with the D3X or with the D700 ? I would like to know that. Greetings, Jorge.

      • 56
        ) Jorge Balarin

        And if Nikon doesn’t want to update one of its best selling FX models, and instead forced us to buy two cameras to replace it, at least they could provide a decent FX autofocus system for the D600, and reliable left autofocus points for the D800.

  10. 11
    ) Gary

    That’s great news! I want a D400!

  11. 12
    ) ralittle2

    Also, why does Nikon feel they must wait for Canon to release the 7Dmkii? Why not jump ahead and capture sales?

    • Because the two are run by the same individuals maybe? :) It is like a monopoly, but with two companies to fool us all!

      • 104
        ) zoetmb

        You persist in this foolishness. Nikon and Canon are highly competitive. If they do some of the same things, it’s because they don’t want to give up any market to the other. If they were NOT competitive, they wouldn’t be releasing similarly featured bodies – one would take one part of the market and the other would take a different part of the market.

        Do you think GM and Ford are owned by the same company because they both release new cars every year with pretty much the same features and body styles?

        Nikon and Canon are also totally different in that Canon is a much larger company than Nikon and they own a multitude of businesses, like production printing, healthcare, office equipment and projectors. Nikon is a much smaller company and most of its revenue now comes from the photo business.

        • 106
          ) MartinG

          They only think they are being competitive. They are playing the same game, so they look like they are the same. It may well be that this cycle will only break when another country sees the opportunity to build things differently. Nikon and Canon have fallen into an industry mindset. They are so busy watching and matching one another, they are not watching the road looking for opportunities to take a better path.

        • 180
          ) Vitaliy

          I absolutely agree that the reason for the way Nikon and and Canon behave is pure competition. My hypothesis for their action is this. Each DSLR they produce has a “lifespan” of 2-3 years before is upgrade comes out. If Canon delivers their camera first, Nikon can outperform their camera in maybe 6-month time. Thus, Canon will be ahead of Nikon for 6 months out of 3 years, while Nikon will be ahead for the remaining two and a half years.
          I wonder if I am missing some important details in this hypothesis.

    • 19
      ) Greg Heller

      The information over at Canon Rumors is that Canon is trying out 3 different variations of the 7D, seem to be having trouble deciding which configuration to go with, or getting the right pieces to play well together. I’m sure that Nikon will want the D400 to trump the 7D MkII when it is announced, so they wait.

  12. 14
    ) kg

    A D400 is definately wanted & needed in the lineup. I only hope it comes out this year. Q1 2014 is a long wait for someone with a D300 & the D7100, while nice, is not the same build as the D300. Those that I know that have upgraded to the D7100 or D600 are not happy with the body. The image quality is not an issue.

  13. 17
    ) Glenn

    I’ve been waiting patiently for some news like this. I, along with many others hope this is true. I almost resigned myself to making the jump to FX but I’ll wait a little longer to see if this pans out. Thanks for the update Nasim.

    • 66
      ) Geo

      I’m with Glen. I was just beginning to consider going to my first FX, the D600 to compliment my X100s.
      Now I’m confused. I’m sure Nasim will do terrific in depth comparisons between D7100, D600 and the D400. We are lucky to have his wisdom.

  14. WHOOP WHOOP WHOOP!!!!!!!!

  15. 24
    ) John

    When Nikon announce new systems i always wait in anticiaption not for the new model but for the fact that older models will become much more cheaper. However i do look forward to seeing what new lenses are pushed out as that would my first point of call invest in lenses not the camera.

  16. Would you not think that if the predicted timeline is correct that the D7100 will have out for up to a year when the D400 is introduced, that some advancements in the 24mp sensor would/could have been made? The way I took the article is that the existing D7100 sensor would be used. I too am anxiously waiting on the D400 but will be disappointed if an improved sensor is not used if it is introduced in late 2013 or early 2014.

  17. 26
    ) Jan K.

    I AM. DX.
    And getting ready to get the socks blown off!
    A D300s user here and not quite ready for an “upgrade”, so plan was to look out around Christmas time. If the D400 was there, great! otherwise it would probably be a D800E.
    But am in no hurry at all.
    Love the D300s. And miss it deeply these days… service time… bites lip…

  18. 27
    ) Barry

    If true this is excellent news as I was beginning to think I might have to downgrade from my trusty D300 to a D7100. I look forward with interest to the D400′s release.

    • 28
      ) Richard

      I can assure you that changing your D300 would be no downgrade! I had a D300 and now have both a D800 and D7100. The D7100 completely demolishes the D300 and I longed for the D400, but no more. Apart from slower fps (which I can live with) the D7100 is the best wildlife camera I have ever had bar none and I’ve had a few.

      Whatever clothes the D400 dresses up in, it’s going to be very expensive and that’s a given.

      Richard

      • 214
        ) Vitaliy

        Richard, although the performance of the D7100 sensor is significantly better than that of D300/D90 sensor, the body can be improved quite a bit.

        Just from my recent experience shooting a ping-pong tournament with D700 and D7100, the later one had an annoying lag before taking the first picture. The buffer size is a more obvious needed upgrade for D7100. The controls can also be borrowed from D800 for people who like them. The autofocus system, although adequate for pictures, should be improved for video.

        • 215
          ) Richard

          Yes, I agree. the buffering of RAW images leaves much to be desired. However, if the D400 materialises it will be a cost scenario for me. If the D400 costs say 200% more than a D7100, then I’m out faster buffering or not. If it costs 100% more I’ll seriously consider it. Buffering is an important issue, even more so than more fps, but like most things I have learned to tolerate this annoyance. The image quality alone makes it my favourite Nikon yet…and I’ve had a few!

          Richard

      • 282
        ) Mark

        The D300 crushes the consumer grade D7100. Although I have the D800 I still use the D300 for the superior HP and focus tracking for wildlife, sports, etc. The D7100 is useless since it is just as slow as the D800. You could just shoot with the D800 and crop the photos to get better results. Why would you ever use the consumer model? There’s no benefit at all. You have 2 cameras that are poor where the D300 shines. Plus it is a professional size and build. It has the external controls that your consumer model lacks. I don’t know how you could even hold the lady sized consumer model.

        • 284
          ) Richard

          It may be whatever you say it is and yes, having had one I do know. Tolerating the buffer is a problem I agree, however I am not a machine gunner even with birds in flight. I use both ethe D800 and D7100 satisfactorily.

          The D800 as you know shoots 4 frames per second in continuous FX mode or 5:4 crop mode. 5 frames per second in continuous 1.2× crop mode or DX (APS-C) mode. With the optional MB-D12 battery grip, fitted with either the EN-EL18 battery pack of the D4 or AA batteries, continuous shooting at 6 frames per second in DX mode is supported. The D330 will allow 8 fps.

          Silly comment: “I don’t know how you could even hold the lady sized consumer model”! You don’t have a clue do you, because you’ve never had a D7100. I’ve both and find I can cope quite happily the D800/D7100. There are plenty of very capable bird and wildlife photographers using both cameras.

          Yes, if a D400 appeared I would have one, but be careful who you target with irresponsible comments.

          Richard

          • 285
            ) Richard

            Error “The D300 will allow 8 fps”.

  19. 29
    ) Brian

    I would have expected a 16MP (DX version of D4) camera, but if they’re willing and able to get the framerate with a new processor, so much the better. If they really want to make this camera exciting, they should come out with an all-new sensor with phase detect AF sites like the CX (Nikon 1) cameras to improve live view focus, especially in video mode. Would also like to see the end of CF slots with the fragile pins; a big buffer + dual SDXC slots would make me happy. Finally, if there is indeed a new AF sensor and new processor, when will we see them in a D800S? Now THAT would be exciting!

    • 30
      ) Brian

      I forgot to add, new DX lenses must appear if we are to take Nikon’s commitment to DX seriously. Something like a 16mm or 17mm fast lens and a TS-E in the same range would be a place to start, plus an update to the 12-24.

      • 31
        ) StevenP

        For the D400, if it were produced, most users of this camera body would use the FX lenses as you are entering into a different realm.
        As the development of DX lenses takes away from Nikon’s R&D money for the development of FX lenses I would prefer that the money be spent there. For example, Nikon needs to revamp the Fisheye series of lenses. There is only one, the 16mm f2.8D available. Why no 8mm or 10mm.
        Would also like to see Nikon have a 5:1 macro, similar to that offering from Canon for ultra-closeup work.

        • 35
          ) DaveA

          StevenP,

          I am a DX user for a number of reasons. One of those is the fact that Full Frame lenses are bulky and heavy. I do not want big and bulky lenses. I want quality, small, light lenses. I don’t mind paying the same as for a Full Frame lens; as long as the quality is there, and it is worth it. There are many people like me.

          To me it appears to be silly to have a DX camera with whopping great heavy lenses on. As for only wanting a fisheye lens, you are lucky. When was the last time Nikon released a real quality lens? When were any dx lenses updated?

          • 36
            ) DaveA

            Whoops! I mistyped a sentence.

            “When was the last time Nikon released a real quality lens? ” should read When was the last time Nikon released a real quality DX lens?

            • 38
              ) StevenP

              Most DX lenses are pretty new, some of the FX lenses have not been revamped in years. The 16mm is a case in point, it’s a D series. They just redid the 80-400, the 17-35 needs a refresh as well. My daughter has the 55-300 for her D90 which has pretty good optics. The DX series are budget lenses, are you thinking that a 70-200DX or a 24-70DX?
              I think that the DX line will eventually disappear to be replaced with the mirrorless cameras which are now coming with ASP-C sensors.

            • 54
              ) DaveA

              StevenP,

              Here is a list of Nikkor DX lenses with their release dates: -

              10.5 mm f/2.8G ED AF DX Fisheye July 2003
              35mm f/1.8G AF-S DX NIKKOR Feb 2009
              40 mm f/2.8G DX Micro-Nikkor July 2011
              10–24 mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S DX January 2004
              12–24 mm f/4G ED-IF AF-S DX February 2003
              17–55 mm f/2.8G ED-IF AF-S DX July 2003
              18-70 mm f/3.5-4.5G ED-IF AF-S DX Jan 2004
              18–135 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S DX August 2006
              55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED AF-S DX March 2007
              16–85 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED AF-S VR DX January 2008 Latest version
              18–55 mm f/3.5-5.6G AF-S VR DX November 2007
              18-105 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR DX August 2008
              18-200 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED AF-S VR II DX July 2009 Latest version
              55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED AF-S VR DX March 2007 Latest Version
              55–300 mm f/4-5.6G ED AF-S VR DX August 2010
              85mm f/3.5 micro ED AF-S VR DX October 2009
              18–300 mm f/3.5-5.6G ED AF-S VR II DX July 2009

              Thats a total of 17 Nikkor lenses. Here is the total number new of lenses released each year
              2003 3
              2004 2
              2005 0
              2006 1
              2007 3
              2008 2
              2009 4
              2010 1
              2011 1
              2012 0
              2013 0

              Only two lenses are younger than four years of age. Doesn’t say a lot, does it?

              I think you are right that DX DSLRs will vanish, but I suspect not for ten to fifteen years

            • 58
              ) DaveA

              StevenP,

              I should also ave written that the Full Frame lenses sequence have some thought and structure to the focal lengths available; a complete range.

              The DX range of lenses, however, looks like some one tossed a coin to decide what lenses would be made. “Doesn’t matter if there is already a lens of this type, the coin says to make the same one. Oh we’ll, lets update it a bit”. There is not a lot of structure to the range of lenses available.

              Another point. What sells more in Nikons range of sensors? Full frame or DX? DX do; and for a reason – price. Not the only reason, but a big one. So why are there loads of big, heavy, very expensive full frame lenses that most DX owners can’t afford or don’t want, but very few DX lenses?

            • 60
              ) StevenP

              DaveA;

              Looking at your list, which is a lot more research than I have done, I see a lot of cross-over. As an FX lens works on a DX body I would almost prefer that Nikon produce all FX lenses and designate those which are professional series, similar to the L series in Canon.
              But I come from a different place. For Canon we only purchase L series, determined that fewer but higher quality lenses matter. For Nikon I am much the same. But I treat this hobby seriously, so I am willing to find a way. For the average hobbyist, do we need to have a 25 lens range? Would not 5 lenses suffice. If you want a fisheye, a speciality lens, would you not then expect to b=move to the FX series. Why produce a DX and an FX.

              For me, I am planning for the 70-200mm f2.8 and the 300mm f4 when it is released with VR. I want a fisheye. Just so you know, I have

              D700
              16-35mm f4
              24-120mm f4
              70-300mm f4-5.6
              105mm f2.8
              50mm f1.8D
              28mm f2.8D

              The 70-200 will replace the 70-300 in my ‘kit’ when I add a 1.4x teleconverter. At some point I will consider the 24-70mm f2.8 as my stock lens, but I am pretty happy with the 24-120mm.

            • 74
              ) MartinG

              I used to own the 16-85 when I was a DX owner. It holds up well compared to the equivalent FX lenses. Isn’t the issue about weight and cost. DX lenses have to be less expensive. FX lenses cost quite a bit more to build. It makes sense to see all quality FX lenses as DX lenses too. Who would buy a $1600 or $2000 DX?

            • 87
              ) DaveA

              StevenP,

              Good to hear from you. My apologies for not responding sooner. You are correct about there being a crossover in lens (DX & FF); however, as MartinG has written, DX lenses are supposed to be physically lighter than FF lenses. The majority of the DX market are not going to want to pay over the odds for a whacking great lens that negates the purpose of having a relatively cheap and physically small DSLR.

              The reason I have provided the above list of lenses is due to the fact I have been waiting for the D400 for a very long time. I have spent the past eighteen months researching camera systems from many manufacturers and having a play with a few. Many cameras are not for me due to their ridiculously convoluted menu systems; others due to their less than perfect low light abilities, others for being too large and too heavy, and so on. Sounds a wee bit like the three bears and Goldilocks story, doesn’t it.

              A problem with the D4, for me, for instance is the size and the weight. It is physically difficult for me to hold as I have small hands. It is also too big/ heavy, as are the Full Frame lenses, for a carry on bag when flying. The Nikon D300 is a compromise for me – not as good a sensor as the D800, yet slightly bigger and heavier than I would like. The DX system does though offer me the additional reach I want for wildlife, particularly birds. The D300 is robust enough for where I live, the West Coast of Scotland, which often feels like as wet as the bottom of an ocean, as well as for travelling with.

              The advantage of a D400 and DX lenses is therefore weight, size and cost. Being forced to use a Full Frame lens system negate all of these. None of the other DX cameras has the ability to meet my requirements. The D400, hopefully, shall.

            • Sigma seems to be filling for Nikon as far as DX is concerned. Some of their DX lenses include 8-16 (12-24 FF equivalent), 17-70 micro (25-105), 50-150 (75-125), plus many more.

            • 97
              ) DaveA

              MartinG,

              Reference your comment about paying lots of money for DX lenses specifically made for a DX camera: I would pay for expensive DX lenses, as I suspect would many D400 users. If I can get the same quality from a physically smaller lens (and preferably lighter) why should I not be willing to pay as much? I would tend to agree that for the largest zooms this would not be practical (above 300 mm perhaps).

              You are correct though that the majority probably wouldn’t; or at least not at first. Having a “Professional” range of DX lenses though may be a cheaper option for those who start out with DX cameras and want to improve the quality of their images. It may be a cheaper option.

            • 101
              ) DaveA

              Mike Dougherty,

              I am looking forward to seeing the Sigma 18-35m F1.8. Only problem I see is how does this fit in to a lens set.

            • 105
              ) MartinG

              I take your point. I just don’t believe it will ever happen.

              My reasoning is as follows. The DX market is aimed at entry level users with ‘an interest’ in photography. Once that interest reaches a point where lens reviews are read over and over and terms like: constant aperture, micro-contrast, bokeh and focussing speed are things you take note of before purchase, it is probably time to move to FX. I really would love to see some light, compact, constant aperture DX zooms. I would happily pay $2500 for a DX only F4 300 or 400. I am not expecting to see it any time soon. The problem is the way the manufacturers now see DX. Until now the aim has been to convince buyers that their system produces fabulous quality images. The flagship which symbolised the push for quality has been refining FX (d3s D700, D800(e) D4).

              I think the D7100 suggests that DX has reached image quality levels which are truly great. The question remains however, will manufacturers work out that there is a good potential market in making DX cameras with full blown feature sets? (AF-ON buttons, good size buffers, more than one function button, great setting customisation systems etc? Hopefully the D 400 will appear and open up the DX options.

              I have an FX set up and I love the quality of it but a full set up is heavy and not easy to carry to the remote locations I often find myself wanting to photograph.

              I do hope you are right, but logic and planning may not be compatible with the kind of corporate decision making that large companies seem to have.

              Unless a powerful visionary, someone who breaks the mould and thinks differently has lots of clout at Nikon, we may never see DX become the things it should be allowed to become. (I am reminded of the late Steve Jobs here)

            • 111
              ) DaveA

              Good morning Martin,

              Nice to hear from you and to read your response. I am going to ask you to change your perspective and on read a few of my own thoughts and opinions. My apologies forbthem not be very well structured, but hopefully you will get the gist of what I want to say, and you will see the relevance. For us to do this we actually need to take a few steps backwards. Let us start with why do people take photographs, and here I shall generalise to keep mypoating relatively short. For many reasons; many people do it so as to share with others, whether that is friends, family or the public. Others do it for themselves, for memories when they are older (that’s me). Others do it for money or a desire for fame. Now lets look when people want to take photographs (I’m going to ignore the paid photographers here). What they had for breakfast, their vacations, accidents they see on the way to the shops; in fact at any time of the day or night and in any situation. What that means is that people must have their cameras on them 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This is why compact cameras did so well, and phone cameras now do so well. Some people, and a small percentage of them, wish to improve the quality of images they produce. Some will be young people, who as they get older, want to improve their photography because they have an interest in it. They probably won’t be able to afford a big expensive camera.

              Now what decides what a person buys? Many people do some research, a few research both cameras and lenses in depth. It might be size that is important, certainly cost will be important. Size and weight may well be important; in fact I suggest that size and weight are very important for most people. My wife is a prime example. She has done photography since 1972. She has developed and printed her own films. I am willing to spend £2,000 ish (about $3,800) on a camera body for her. What does she want? She wants something the size of a Nikon D3200. From the articles I have read of Nasim’s I feel he very much under estimates the wishes of the many who move in to photography from other camera types. Wo else might want a small camera? Well, those who fly for a start. More and more people are starting to travel with carry on baggage alone (Sometimes you wouldn’t believe that). More and more airlines are limiting you to about 8kg weight. Think about that. How many FX lenses and camera bodies, with associated equipment are you going to be allowed to carry on? Then there are back packers, those out walking for the day, and so on.

              There are many, many more people who are in to photography who are not professionals. People like me (I have been in to photography since 1970). I have spent the past 18 months or so looking for a replacement for my Nikon D200 (not my only camera system, nor sensor size). I have played around with a number of cameras and lenses. The D4 was physically too big for my hands to comfortably hold and way too heavy to comfortably walk around with and travel with – for me and the wife. I tried the D800; too big and too heavy. I tried the Olympus OM-D EM5. Not great in low light, and menu system/buttons not to my taste. Panasonic; forget it. I already have one and can’t stand the menu system, nor the button layout they have. Nor domain like the quality or look of the images. Hopefully you get the idea.

              At the moment, the DX system, and Canons equivalent have much to offer in price, size, weight, ease of use, and quality of image. Yes, the image may not be as good as a Leica S2, a Nikon D800 or other cameras – but they are not far off it. As Vern wrote elsewhere on this web site … “As you admitted, it isn’t the camera, it’s the photographer! Please don’t knock DX. It has its place and has been very successful and of great value to amateurs and pro’s alike. Guys like Bob Krist have used DX right along and been very successful. I don’t agree with all your points against DX. It was greatly oversimplified. If bigger is always better we should all be using medium format.” ….. Hope you don’t mind me quoting you Vern.

              In my most recent 18 month journey of trying to find the perfect camera and lens system, guess what. Yes, I haven’t found it. I have had to re learn to accept compromises every where. I will have up to £20,000 (over $30,000) to spend in a few months time. I have been aware this money will be coming for two years. I will never get the opportunity to spend that much again on a camera system in one go. What I have realised is that for me, a generalist photographer, who likes to photograph many different subjects (excluding studio and model photography, but including birds, macro and wildlife) I am very like the majority of photographers in the world. I have realised that size, weight and money are more important to me than striving to obtain the optimum quality of an image. In theses days of recession, one that started at the end of 2007 and one that will go on having effects for at least two generations, money is important. Very important. What I buy now will have to last me for many years to come. I may be able to afford the odd lens here and there, but not some £4,000 full frame, heavy weight monster.

              So, what meets my needs? A quality light weight DX system. I am willing to pay the same price for many of the more sensibly priced FX lenses, but not the daft prices for the larger lenses – yet I want those larger lenses for better photographs of small birds.

              Mirrorless cameras are the future, but they are not yet the present for me. I do not see mirrorles cameras replacing Optical DSLRs totally for 10 to 15 years. This gives Nikon a number of years in which to develop and produce quality smaller, lighter lenses. Why move away from the DX sensor? Many years development time and money have gone in to it. It fits well into smaller camera bodies. The FX system is good, and in some ways better, but at a cost that the majority won’t accept.

              ____________________________________
              The above is an unstructured précis of my own thoughts, and as such misses much out. I have probably missed out some important arguments. For that I apologise. I also apologise for the length of the posting

            • 112
              ) MartinG

              I actually think we are in agreement that a D400 would be great to own if it has good pro features. I also agree that improving the lenses available for DX would be a logical development. I currently use a D800 but that does not mean I would never be interested in a lighter system.

              Personally I find the D800 a lovely camera. I love the resolution and the handling. I used to shoot a D90 and I liked it a lot, but it lacked some of the flexibility I need.

              Only time will tell if new high quality DX lenses are developed. I am hoping I am wrong about the development of light and less expensive DX lenses.

              I came across a review of a 4/3rds high quality lens, a zuiko 35 to 100 F2 which is equivalent to a 70 to 200. theoretically such a lens should be a bit lighter and less expensive than a full frame lens, but it costs $2400 and weighs 4.04 lbs. I don’t know much about 4/3rds. Have you come across high quality light lenses in DX or 4/3rds?

            • 113
              ) DaveA

              Afternoon MartinG,

              I agree that we are in agreement about many things. Hope I didn’t put you asleep with my ramblings.

              There are some excellent prime micro four thirds lenses. Lots of them. Many are cheap as well. Have also tried 50mm Leica lenses on an Olympus OM-D E-M5. Absolutely brilliant, if you are happy with manual focus. Unfortunately it was only a very quick play around. Panasonic produce some good f2.8 professional zooms that are not too heavy and reasonable at under £1,000.the 35-100mm f2.8 is about £850 ($1290). It weighs under 1lb (360 Grammies). There are some very good lenses. I am aware of other manufacturers zooms which are also very good.

              I am envious of the lens range and quality available to micr 4/3 camera system users. A shame there is not the same for DX users.

            • 114
              ) DaveA

              MartinG,

              Take a look attune following web page for an idea of micro 4/3 lenses.

              http://hazeghi.org/mft-lenses.html

              Is well worth a quick read

          • 148
            ) Larry L

            Not all FX lenses are large.The older D series FX lenses like what I own, 60mm 2.8 micro, 1.4 50mm, with no motor in them are as small or smaller than DX and work very well. The cost is also low for very nice used ones. My 80 – 200 2.8 however is a tank.

            • 149
              ) DaveA

              Larry L,

              Thank you for your comments. I have thought about manual focus lenses as well. Have looked at possibly getting some Leica R lenses.

      • 283
        ) Mark

        You don’t need DX lenses at all. I only ever shoot with FX lenses. Always have, even before I had an FX body. It doesn’t make sense to invest money in lenses you cannot use when you move to FX or to use on all your bodies. Plus, on a DX model you use the sweet spot the lenses and the results are spectacular.

  20. It will become very interesting if Nikon delays the D400 announcement until 1st quarter 2014. For college football, I recently switched from using a D300 with battery pack (8 FPS) and 10-year old Nikon 80-400 to a Sony A57 (10 FPS) with Sony 70-400 because Nikon delayed announcing the new AFS 80-400 simply too long. A D400 with new AFS 80-400 might sway me back to Nikon, but Sony is rumored to be replacing it’s entire A-mount product line with mirrorless bodies that could easily exceed 12 or 15 FPS. To add credibility to the Sony rumors, Sony has recently upgraded their 70-400 and 500 F 4 lenses and announced a new 400 F4 designed by Olympus. I’m mainly a Nikon user but some of the Sony/Zeiss glass is unbelievably sharp. While Sony has had difficulty cracking the sports market, they are holding off on introducing incremental upgrades for the rest of 2013 in order to introduce a game changer camera in early 2014. Sony certainly has the technological prowess to pull off such a feat.

  21. Yes Nikon, please do this make us a D400 as soon as possible. We need that action camera here. Some people call it baby D4 some D400 you guys can call it what ever you want but I need this body before rodeo season kicks in.

  22. 37
    ) Abhijit

    As a D800 + D800E owner (like to carry two one with wide prime/zoom & one with tele prime/zoom) – two things might interest me via a firmware upgrade (Nikon can charge some money for the firmware upgrade if they want or the 2 features below work only with Nikon grips and make money off MB-D12):

    1. Allow the D800/E DX mode fps with the grip to go up to 8 fps at least (this should be doable). Hopefully have the 1.2x mode go to 6 fps.
    2. Allow the D800/E FX mode fps with the grip to go up to 8 fps with jpeg small (around 9 megapixel) and a 9 megapixel (4 pixels binned into one) small NEF file.

    The above should be easily doable with not a lot of effort on Nikon R&D. Of course selling a premium firmware package is not what Nikon has done so far – but could be done via a firmware upgrade process like the following:

    1. Nikon creates a new premium firmware which is not upgradeable via the normal firmware upgrade process.
    2. User provides Nikon the camera serial number.
    3. Nikon website generates a software license key file based on the serial number.
    4. User downloads and upgrades to an intermediate firmware which is aware of the software license key file and the premium firmware upgrade process.
    5. User places the software license key file & the premium firmware on the memory card.
    6. During upgrade to the premium firmware the intermediate firmware decrypts the software license key file – and checks that the camera serial number matches the license key file.

    • 39
      ) Abhijit

      One more thing the above would probably steer some of the D400 upgraders to choose a D800 with the new firmware instead – which would be better margin for Nikon.

      • 82
        ) Red

        And it would take some kid few hours to reverse engineer that “special” firmware and those sales would go down the drain not to mention the fact that buyers of “normal” D800 would be pissed at Nikon for cripling their expensive camera.
        Bad idea that.

        • 92
          ) Abhijit

          How does the kid reverse engineer the “special” firmware? Does the kid even know what operating system (if any) the special firmware Nikon uses for their D800? What CPU? The build tools for the special firmware? At best the kid may crack the encryption algorithm for the software license key file – but the kid is more likely to try his reverse engineering skills on an iPhone or an Android app or a game – not on a $3k DSLR that “he/she thinks just takes the same kinda pics as an iPhone and used by the most boring folks the kid thinks uses them (new parents & grandpas/grandmas)”.

          The choice for the users of D800 or D800E wanting higher frame rates currently is:
          1. sell their D800 & upgrade to a used D4 (say $3K difference and lose 20 MP)
          2. sell their D800 & get a used D3s (say $1.5K difference and lose 24 MP, f/8 autofocus, better auto ISO, better video, etc. for a slightly better low light performance)
          3. sell their D800 & get a used D3 (even-money wise and lose 24 MP, f/8 autofocus, better auto ISO, video, etc. for not much other higher frame rate & pro body)
          4. add a D700 + grip for $1500 (but lose cropping capability in their spray & pray gunning)
          5. add a d300 + grip for $600-700 (but lose overall image quality in their spray & pray gunning)

          The current D800 owners will definitely be happy to get higher frame rates by paying $400-500 for the firmware + grip – and the other buyers not needing higher frame rates will be equally happy not spending that money for a feature they did not need (as opposed to if Nikon had charged extra $200-300 as a price for having D800 even more complete camera).

      • 102
        ) DaveA

        Abhijit,

        …”the above would probably steer some of the D400 upgraders to choose a D800 with the new firmware instead”

        Not if you want a smaller, lighter, cheaper camera and lenses.

  23. The new D400 doesn’t have to be a DX format camera. It could be with the same sensor as D600 and a speed of D4. Price tag $3500. I will buy one tomorrow. If you want a DX you can drop to 1.3 or 1.5 crop. No BS. Why we need to establish limits here?

    • 41
      ) Greg Heller

      I’m pretty sure with all the screaming that has been going on for the last 3 years by all of the DX users that the D400 will be a DX camera.

      • I don’t see the reason to scream. You want to you DX drop down the crop. If you have a full frame lens use it to your full advantage. Cannot afford D400, buy D7100 then or something else. Remember going back to DX is a step back for the Nikon. I don’t think it’s a good idea. What are the specks DX users want to see in a new D400? How different that would be from an existing DX cameras that Nikon already sell?

        • 216
          ) Vitaliy

          Vlad, I understand that you already live in the FX world and DX is not for you. And you already stepped over that $1000 for photo-toys limit. But for many people that are new to photography there is a big difference between the the DX and the FX, especially considering the price of the glass.
          Therefore, it is natural for Nikon to have an upgrade for D300s in the DX world. D7100, although a great camera is probably an upgrade in the line D90-D7000. It has a chance to be that upgrade for the D300s with professional controls and build of D800 that is missing from D7100.

          But I will agree with you, that in the FX world there is a place for the modern analogue of D700 – a camera with performance close to D4 in the body similar to D800. It may take some time for this body to come out though. It seams Nikon is determined to win the megapixel war by moving all its DSLRs past the 24 megapixel mark. If this is the case, we should expect a form of D4x with 24+ megapixel sensor before a D700 upgrade based on the same components comes out.

    • 43
      ) StevenP

      What would be the point of another FX body. I already think there is one too many, we do not need the D600. Instead of this I think the D400 would have been better…but they needed to compete with the 6D.

      • Nikon has to stop Canon’s chase and start using their heads. What is the use of the FX body???? You have to be kidding? Aren’t you? That is the point that you can use it as a DX or FX. Can you use DX as a Full Frame body?

        • 55
          ) StevenP

          I think you answered my point. I see no need for the D600, it was purely released as a quick-fix against the Canon 6D (IMHO)…taking the D7000 and adding a FX sensor.
          If I owned the Nikon world I would have the D3200 and a slightly lower priced D7200 (call it the D5300 if that floats your boat), then a high-end D400 designed for sports and nature photographers with a high FPS and large buffer.
          There are too many cameras, too many variations on the pixel count…focus on a smaller number of bodies. I am not a big fan of using something in a manner which it was not designed, that would include using the D800 in crop-mode. But I have never used my camera in that manner so I cannot state whether there is a benefit.
          I, as I indicate elsewhere; believe that the DX will be replaced with the mirrorless range of cameras.

          • Yes, that’s right. The D600 was about “first cheap Full Frame camera body” this “first” game works against Nikon. Release what the consumer wants. We all waiting for the fast action body, we are willing to spend for it and we are not buying $6K cameras or Nikon long range glass that is mega priced. I am screaming now! Hope you hear us Nikon. $3K or $3.5K the most for the super fast full frame beast. Don’t put video in mine, I have it in my D800. :)

    • 57
      ) Jorge Balarin

      I like your suggestion.

    • 64
      ) Abhijit

      If you want the same 24 MP sensor of D600 with the 10-11 fps speed & buffer of the 16 MP D4 – that will be a better product than the D4 and people will stop buying the D4. Nikon has not managed 10-11 fps on a 24 MP so far – while they may replace the D4 with a D4s which does that in 2014 I don’t see them doing that in 2013 – nor do I think they will kill the 2013-2014 D4 sales by adding that for an FX D400. What may be a real interesting move by Nikon for sports and wild life photographers may be to go the other way in the megapixel race by having a 12 MP D400 but which goes closer to 15 fps with the noise characteristics approaching D4. That way there are still reasons for a D4; good reason to buy a D400 (versatile high speed camera) over D7100 (slower but more pixels) as the relationship will be similar to the relationship between D800/E vs D4. Also folks may end up with buying the D400 to complement with either D600 (speed/reach), D7100 (speed/low light), D800/E (speed) or even a D4 (reach).

      Also there is a viewfinder advantage of a dedicated DX camera vs an FX camera with more pixels and crop mode.

      • I would be very happy with 7/8 fps and nice clean ISO at 6400. Good buffer size. The Canon does six frames with 24mpx. I think Nikon can make it go up to 7/8 no problem.

        • 70
          ) DaveA

          No, I would want a D400 as has been mentioned by Nasim

        • 124
          ) Abhijit

          8 fps @ 24 MP, clean ISO at 6400, good buffer size at $3.5K will make the sales of D4 disappear with only those wanting the 2 more fps of D4 (even those might give up those 2 extra fps for 50% more resolution of 24 MP). I would not hold my breath for Nikon to release such a camera in 2013 (2014 or 2015 is a different game).

      • 109
        ) Martin

        AF will work only with the initial shot, not the subsequent shots with over 10 fps. For me, also I am extremely pleased with the announced D400, fast AF in a rapid series of shots is most imortant and there is a lot to improve over the actual AF in the D4 when you are shooting birds in in fly or rapid moving targets from a close distant or with a big lens. But the D400 is the camera to complete the D4 provided that we don’t get to much nose in the 24 Mb sensor that is quit small. I stll think that a little bit less Mb pixels and better electronisc would be nicer. Or, what I hope is, that the whole electronics have been improved what concerns noise. At least I can say that the D4 delivers perfect results up to 3200 Iso and more. But the most limiting factor in the D4 is still AF as mentioned before

        • I wouldn’t be so sure. Remember D700? Didn’t kill the sales of D3 but it was one super popular body and Nikon made a lot more money on it then on D3s sales. You have to use your head hear. The number of sales for D700 bit all the records. And if you read my post I sad, no video, just like D700 was. I don’t know what is the percentage of people don’t use video in DSLR but I am sure a lot. I am one of them and I shoot video on my camcorder. I am not a videographer and I don’t really need video, besides I have it in my D800 and each time I think about it I think “why should I pay for something that I don’t use?” Sony released one FF DSLR without video and apparently it’s very popular and cheap.

      • 130
        ) Jorge Balarin

        So perhaps the D4 doens’t deserve to exist : )

  24. 47
    ) Jorge Balarin

    Dear Nasim,

    Fortunately my small wallet prevent me of running over every update. The D400 sounds like a very solid camera, that makes a worthwhile investment. I would love to see also a D600 with a real FX autofocus system, an a 300mm f/4 VR. Greetings, Jorge.

  25. 48
    ) Greg Heller

    Vladimir the D300s can reach 8 fps the only other camera that Nikon has that can do that is the D4. The D4 is 3.4 times the cost($6000) of the D300s($1600). The thousands of DX users have an investment in DX lenses they don’t want to lose. They want the complete alloy body like the D300/D300s has. There are many more reasons people want to stay DX. It sounds to me like you aren’t happy with Nikon’s line up of FX bodies.

    • My D700 also did 7 FPS and it was Full Frame. It cost $1400 now. The luck of pixels on D300s and on D700 was a big problem. The shutter noise on both D300 and D700 and D800 is awful. D800 may be a little better but not by much. It means you cannot get close to the subject. First click and the subject is gone. Renting long lenses is a great solution but very expensive one. Also you don’t always get what you need. The most affordable solution is the body. I would even go with the D800 and it’s 4 fps if at list buffer size is going to be extended.

  26. I think most of the people on line will agree that we are looking here for in D400 more pixels and very high speed. We pretty much have the rest with all other Nikon cameras. My problem is that I cannot afford long lenses and probably never will. I have a AF-S 300mm F2.8 VRII with 2X III converter. I use that for the wildlife. The only way I can extend the f-length of my configuration is to go with higher resolution. Which I did and I got D800. Now it’s not bad at all but I am missing a lot of shots because of the buffer of D800 and bloody FPS speed. I don’t use crop modes on my D800 because it’s not necessary I can crop later with better results. That is why the large Full Frame is really works here and preserves usable quality.

    • 89
      ) DaveA

      Vladimir,

      I would add the robustness to your list as well.

      I really do not want a camera as big and heavy as the D800, and certainly not as big and heavy as the D4. The big advantage of a DX system is size, weight and cost. I really do want the robustness that a D300 has though.

  27. 62
    ) BrianB

    Hi, Nasim.

    The most interesting thing for me in this post is your comment at then end saying you expect some DX lens announcements as well. Do you have any info on what lenses might arrive? I’d like to see a 16-85 F4 VR equivalent to the 24-120 F4 VR, with at least as good image quality.

  28. 67
    ) DavidG

    Awesome news, can’t wait for this to come true!

  29. 68
    ) Homer

    Great news !!! I am already saving money!!!.
    you know what…. I was about to buy the D7100… : (

  30. 72
    ) fiza

    Hey do anyone see an improved D600 anywhere in the horizon ? atleat tht jam packed AF points improved, wit a better ISO performance and a Wifi capable one ?

    • 131
      ) Greg Heller

      fiza: With a new auto-focus system there will be new AF points the D300s has 51 so I would imagine the D400 would have at least that many or perhaps they could distribute them in a way that better covers the entire frame. What kind of ISO performance are you looking for? The D600 has the best ISO performance of all the FF cameras from Nikon and Canon, at least as measured by DXOMark. DXOMark leaves me scratching my head though, how can Canon always have cameras that don’t test well in their lab but perform so well in the field?

  31. 76
    ) Chris Weller

    Nasim,

    I wait anxiously for the D400 as well. Three Thoughts:

    1. I’d rather wait an extra 6 months and get a truly capable camera (8+ fps at 18-24 MP) then get <8 fps. They can't push 8+ fps through current processing at 24 MP. Even if they used everything in the D4, I'm guessing they might get 6.5 to 7 fps at 24 mp (which isn't enough for a D400 camera). I'd personally be fine with 16-18 MP to get the higher frame rate, but I doubt they would have the D400 with lower MP than the D3200.

    2. If they wanted to crush Canon they should introduce DX super-telephoto's along with this camera. Imagine a 400 F/4 VR, DX that weighs 4-5 lbs! – That combo would be THE wildlife combo. Imagine a 300 F 2.8 VR, Dx at 3,5-4 lbs – That would be THE daytime sports combo –

    3. I highly doubt they would do this, but for low light IQ, some kind of pixel binning to go from 24 to 12 mp (not sure is this works or would need to be 6 mp, which would not be enough), then add the combo's above for 3200 – 6400 iso shooting. Killer! Probably too much competition for FX line though.

    Thanks

    • 77
      ) Brian

      Chris,

      Unfortunately DX long lenses don’t make much sense. Consider that 400 f/4 needs 100 mm diameter aperture, so it has to be a large, heavy, expensive lens whether it is FX or DX. Wide angle lenses can be easier to build for DX however, since it is with wide angle lenses that it’s difficult to cover a large sensor.

      • 81
        ) Chris Weller

        Hmmm… I didn’t realize that they were so similar in the long lenses. I just thought that if you had to cover a sensor that is half the size, that all of the elements in the lens would be smaller and lighter regardless of focal length. If anyone knows of an article that discusses this idea, I would like to learn more about it.

  32. 78
    ) Frank Jr.

    I still enjoy my D7000 very much. The 16MP crop sensor is fine for what I do. Wearing prescription eye glasses I do mind the small view finder that is found on all Nikon DX cameras. Now if Nikon put a modified larger FX style view finder on the D400, that would be a game changer for me.

    • 80
      ) Chris Weller

      I’ve heard good things about this:

      http://www.amazon.com/Nikon-4793-DK-17M-Magnifying-Eyepiece/dp/B000BWRIE8

      1.2x magnifier. I’m going to try one. Some people say it makes the DX viewfinder as good or better than FX. Sounds like a stretch, but who knows.

      • 83
        ) Frank Jr.

        Thanks for the reply Chris.

        I have also looked into using the DK-17M , however the DK-17M has 22mm threads. To mount the eyepiece one needs the DK-22 adapter which unfortunately has 19mm threads. From what I have read the adapter can be modified by filing it, but I am not sure I want to try that and find the results disappointing. If a 22mm adapter could found that fit my camera I would certainly try the DK-17M.

        Thanks Again

        • 120
          ) EnPassant

          The magnifying eyepiece for D7000 and other cameras with rectangular mount is DK-21M: http://www.nikonusa.com/en/Nikon-Products/Product/Eyepieces/25339/DK-21M-Magnifying-Eyepiece.html
          How good it will work in practise I do not know.

          • 141
            ) sarimak

            Rectangular eyepiece DK21M works well for D7000, especially if you wear glasses as I do. But: you have to pay some cost for the magnification: the viewfinder coverage is somewhat smaller and you have to “peek” into the corners. This is even worse with glasses because they don’t allow you to get your eyeballs close enough to the eyepiece. For center-weighted focusing (product/portrait) it isn’t a problem and the eyepiece pays off. For landscape it simply sucks – but nothing prevents you from switching the eyepieces there and back again.

  33. 79
    ) jayatu

    The arrival of d400 will make th d7100 less expensive. And we the hobbiest will buy it.

  34. 86
    ) PeterO

    It is no secret that Canon and Nikon just happen to come out with camera bodies that compete in the same feature/price set (like the 6D and the D600) at the same time. But I don’t understand why Nikon would hold back the D400 just because the 7DII isn’t ready. Most people who would buy these models would already be heavily invested in lenses and peripherals for that brand. Is there some unwritten code between these two companies or as earlier mentioned, are they really owned by the same conglomerate?

    • Peter, that’s a great question! It is no secret that the two companies share things between each other, especially on new product developments. The “budget” FX cameras D600 and 6D were announced at the same time. Considering the fact that new product development lifecycle is pretty long, it would be impossible for Canon or Nikon to rush something out within a matter of a couple of months. Clearly, both knew exactly what they were ready to offer. Hence, while the two companies will never admit this, there is surely exchange of information between the two. Nikon is owned by the Mitsubishi Group, which I believe has close to 500 different companies (banks, corporations, etc). Canon is a large corporation on its own, but I would not be surprised to see some key shareholders that own stock in both companies. Either way, I won’t be surprised if the D400 and the 7D Mark II will come out around the same time :)

      • 117
        ) PeterO

        Thanks for explaining that Nasim, but if it holds true that the two keep releasing the similar models at the same time, then we’ll be waiting a little longer for the D400. Canon still hasn’t released the 70D which has been widely rumored for quite a while now. That would only be catching up with the D7100. Understanding that Nikon would wait a few months after the D7100 launch before releasing a D400, I don’t think they would wait too long because of the price difference. Only a few people who would “normally” buy a $1,200 camera even consider something in the D400 price range. I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of D7100 purrchases are by people who would have ordinarily paid for a D400. They’re tired of waiting. I think Nikon is missing out on sales to these people. Of course, if the delay is predicated on some new “wow” technology, that’s a different story. After all this time, the D400 cannot simply be a minor upgrade to the D300s.

        • 119
          ) EnPassant

          Actually I think it is the opposite. Those who want the D400 but bought the D7100 because they just couldn’t wait anymore see it as a temporary solution. When the D400 comes they will be first in line buying it, selling the D7100 or just keeping it as a back-up. Result: Nikon sell two cameras instead of one.
          That is also why the D400 won’t be released until about half a year passed since the D7100 release, and why Canon who are yet to release their 70D will push the release of their 7DII until end of 2013 or beginning 2014.

          • 123
            ) PeterO

            Interesting perspective EnPassant. Not being a buy and flip kind of guy, I never considered that. I’ve said this before on other forums, but I just find the whole relationship between Canon and Nikon very strange and it smells of collusion to me. Also, I don’t get the whole “surprise” factor marketing that they use. Do they really think that by keeping it top secret until just before release that the consumer will get so excited by their new product that they’ll say: “wow, must buy that right now because it has a new kaddidle widget in it”?

  35. 88
    ) Gary

    Well, memo to Nikon: Don’t WAIT!!!

    Many of us are sports shooters. Lacrosse is pretty much over, baseball well underway, football coming up shortly…we don’t want to wait for Christmas!!! Geez guys, make a move.

    You’ve already lost a large number of potential D400 customers because they moved to the D7100, which just happens to be pretty darned good for sports if you can work around the buffer limitations – and most of us can.

    Nikon needs to announce now and start delivery in time for use this fall. The number of photogs that move to another model will only continue to grow.

    My four-plus year old D300 needs some work. I’m loathe to send it into Nikon for several hundred dollars worth of work, when I think something else is on the way. If I do, that just moves my purchase timeline out. I’m not a pro and not making enough money to haphazardly acquire new gear on a whim.

    Am I the only one :-)

  36. 91
    ) Santa

    I’ve been waiting for an upgrade for so long now that I’d almost lost hope of ever seeing a D400. Nikon hasn’t seen any of my money for many years now,and won’t untill the D400 comes out.

    I’m not buying DX lenses as it looks like Nikon are killing off DX, and I’m not buying FX bodies because there’s nothing in the range for me (D4 too expensive, D800 @36mp….are you kidding? D600 is just a Fisher-price bodied dust collector)

    The annoying thing is that if it is released, the smart money will wait 3-6 months post release for Nikon to sort out their recent quality control issues.

    Still at least theres hope. Technology has moved ahead a lot and Nikon seems to have left us DX guys behind.

  37. 93
    ) ANTONIO

    this sounds like BS to me. Why would Nikon “wait” for their competitor to release a similar product when Nikon is desperately trying to grab marketshare or at least not lose anymore to Canon???

    Imagine if Apple had waited until Android had come out before releasing the iPhone. In technology, there is no time to wait for the competitor to release a similar or better product.

    DX is not a pro format, no matter what the DPReview forum commenters might be yelling.

    • 118
      ) EnPassant

      Whatever. Fact is however that for the last years, when it comes to the upper class cameras, from enthusiast to pro, Nikon and Canon have followed the same pattern for almost every release, Nikon first, then within few months Canon.

      Last year we saw first D800 then 5DIII. 1DX was actually presented before D4, but available only several months later than the D4. We also did see 5DII just a few months after D700 and 7d was a month or so behind D300s. D7100 has already been released this year and 70D is expected soon. Also with 60D Canon announced a few weeks early, but I’ not sure if it was actually available before D7000.

      So there are a lot of signs Nikon and Canon are very well aware about each other’s plans and usually release competing products in same time period.

  38. 94
    ) Chris Weller

    I think it might be more appropriate to characterize Nikon’s position in a slightly different way:

    They are not concerned about releasing the D400 until Cannon released a 7d Mark II, because they won’t loose any sales or reputation if Cannon does not have a similar product. Assuming that all the buyers of this type of camera were new to the market and had little or no prior investment in one system or the other, which probably isn’t true for 80% of the potential customers of such a camera. Instead, they would prefer to wait and develop the technology needed to make a proper d400.

    This combined with the cost involved in that technology comes down every month helping them hit a critical price point (I’m guessing $,1800 or so). So, as long as Cannon doesn’t have a competing product, Nikon shouldn’t feel as though they need to rush a product to market that won’t have the spec everyone is looking for. Especially, if they feel that spec could be trumped just a few months after the release by a Canon body.

    Until the proper camera is ready, they have the d7100 available. Not to say that it’s a viable substitute for a d400. It’s still the best crop sensor camera in the world. (Yes I know it’s buffer stinks, which is why I will not buy one).

  39. 96
    ) Tom P

    This is a nice article, however, nothing more than speculation by the author with no concrete evidence of a Nikon D400 coming out. Nasim Mansurov is proving his own option and not any factual information from Nikon.
    Don’t get me wrong, I have been waiting now for several years for this camera, and, I hope it comes out.
    I guess time will tell.
    Without any insight to Nikon, and the push to FX, I give this some chance of happening.

    • 98
      ) DaveA

      Tom P,

      A rumour is a rumour. If Nikon tell us so, it is no longer a rumour. Nasim does make it very clear that this is not a “fact”.

    • 99
      ) Chris Weller

      With respect, I disagree about Nasim’s post. I find it perfectly appropriate and well sourced. Perahps “Well Sourced, is the wrong term”, but I think he said as much as he could about his source. Clearly this person knows a lot about what is going on inside of Nikon and would not want to be named. The detail combined with a track record of past information that turned out to be correct is what lends credibility.

      He established the source’s credibility and the report was incredibly detailed, which I found helpful. He also then added opinion that I found insightful. I for one and glad to see this kind of post.

    • Tom, Nikon would never provide factual information before releasing a product :) If it did, nobody would buy its existing products – that’s the whole reason why everything is done in such secrecy! My only opinion is at the very end, where I state that there will probably be some DX announcements as well. Other than that, I am simply providing the same information that the source provided me.

  40. 107
    ) Frank Jr.

    As I indicated earlier, the only reason for me to upgrade my D7000 would be for the larger viewfinder on an FX camera. A 12 to 16 megapixel crop sensor is just fine, unless I want very large prints in excess of 2 feet wide, or maybe do some heavy duty cropping. I know some folks like the new D7100, or want an upcoming D400, but for me my next purchase will be an FX camera and keep my more than capable D7000 for a backup. I might be looking at the older D700 or even the new D600 for my next camera.

    I am not knocking anyone who has or wants the latest upgraded DX camera for what ever reason, but as a hobbyist I just want a better viewfinder I can’t get with a DX camera. ; )

    Just my thoughts.

  41. 110
    ) Luis

    Nikon Rumors talk about you rumor
    http://goo.gl/lJaZL

  42. 115
    ) EnPassant

    Well, well. This article is almost exactly what I already wrote here: http://photographylife.com/reviews/nikon-d7100 Look at comment no. 114!

  43. 116
    ) Graham Blaikie

    I wonder if Nikon will use the H265 video codec in place of H264 in the D400? H.265 goes by the name of HEVC, or High Efficiency Video Coding. As H.265′s longer name implies, the video codec is designed to succeed H.264 with a more efficient encoding standard – same quality with half the data, which would make it easier to implement higher frame rates.

  44. 121
    ) Sven

    Hi,

    actually they could a fast D400 with the current Expeed 3 processor. Just have a look at the 1 V2: It’s shooting 14 mp at 60fps – that’s 840 mpps and would be 35 fps at 24 mp…

  45. 128
    ) OS

    Why 24MP for D400? It should be bumped up to 30/32 or well a 36Mp Dx Sensor with atleast 7/8 fps & a great buffer. That would be a rocking entry for such a long awaited camera. :D Just my amateurish opinion.

    I also see that D500 slot is still open. May be this would be a 16mp D4 into a smaller D600 body when a D5 arrives.

    • 135
      ) Faizal Sharip

      I think D400 will have a 32MP CMOS Sensor with Dual Exposure HDR and NCR (Noise Colour Reduction) technologies, 8/9 fps + internal Wi-Fi transmitter :)

    • 146
      ) Larry L

      A lens can only focus down so far, the added megs just do not help the resolution. The Sony SLR I tested with 24 megs had about 6 lines of white to grey to black pixels. Focusing on a black and white edge. So the softness in the lens was the weakest link.

  46. 129
    ) B

    I’d be more than happy with 24MP. Why 36? It doesn’t make for a better camera, and low light performance should be better with 24.

    I’ve been waiting a long time for a D400. My D7000 just doesn’t have the buffer size, layout, or ability to do 5-shot HDR like my D200 had. Aching for a D400!

  47. 132
    ) Parker

    As a D800E owner (and former D300 owner) I’d like to echo some of the views above. Nikon should forget developing the Pro-DX body – just invest the time in making their existing FX bodies fill the void left by the ageing D300/S. I don’t want another body to carry with me just for higher frame rate and 1.5x crop when I already have one of these features in my D800. How about re-instate the faster frame rate at the expense of a cropped image, like it used to be on the D2 series? With 36MP and excellent ISO performance, the D800 could be two cameras in one – both a D300/400 replacement and a superb full-frame body. Give me 8fps at 16MP (or 18MPor 24MP – I’m not fussy) with a battery grip at DX size and I’d be happy. When I want landscapes, I just shoot FX. When I want action, I clip on the grip and shoot DX at 8fps still with plenty or resolution and that marvellous dynamic range ability. Done!
    Surely this could be done with a firmware upgrade? To my mind this would then make the D800 an unbeatable proposition for the pro-sumer market, yet retain enough of a distinction with the upcoming D4x or D4S for the full-time pros. It would also be the perfect upgrade from the D600 and D7100. OK, so purchasers from DX are going to have to stump up more cash for a significant upgrade, but at the same time we must realise that this is why people move to Full-frame anyway – it is the next step up in their photography ambitions. Give them the camera that has both resolution AND speed and the punters will flock to it. Heck, you may even grab a few away from the future 5D Mark iv…
    Canon realised that keeping the FF and 1.3 crop 1DS and 1D lines didn’t make much sense and merged these with the 1Dx. It’s time for Nikon to do the same an merge their crop and full frame semi-pro lines.
    OK I confess, I’m self interested, but to be honest this would be the only thing which I think could improve my experience with the D800E. It’s an immense camera in every facet except speed.

    • 133
      ) DaveA

      132) Parker,

      One side of me likes your idea, another side of me really does not.

      The D800 is a bigger camera than the D300. Lighter, but bigger.

      D800
      Weight (inc. battery) 900 g (1.98 lb / 31.75 oz) . Dimensions 146 x 123 x 82 mm (5.75 x 4.84 x 3.23″)

      D300
      Weight (inc. battery) 918 g (2.2 lb) . Dimensions 147 x 114 x 74 mm (5.8 x 4.5 x 2.9 in)

      Being forced to add the battery grip to get the speed doesn’t help. That increases the size dramatically. Then I would have to buy a bunch of FX lenses; more bulk and weight.

      If I wanted a FX camera, I would buy a FX camera.

      A D800 would be wasted on me, possibly.

    • 138
      ) aaronpriestphoto

      As a D700 owner with a vertical grip and shooting at 8fps, I wholeheartedly agree with your suggestions! There is not much of an upgrade path for me without going to a D4 which I can’t easily afford. And I’d love the D800 resolution when I don’t need more speed. That would be the best of both worlds for me. I enjoy the heavier camera and better balance of having a vertical grip with FX f/2.8 zooms. I can hold the camera much steadier with the grip and the battery life is better than a D3 or D4 with a single battery. (I’m using a D3 battery obviously to get to 8fps with a D700 and the battery life is incredible!)

    • 144
      ) Larry L

      I felt the same way, with the D800E, higher shooting rate at lower megs. It seems that would have been an easy thing to do. The camera does cover a lot of ground and I still am pondering it.

  48. 134
    ) OS

    Hi Parker,
    Parker, Well, I differ in opinion to move to D800 due to lack of a D400.

    Frankly, Being just an enthusiast amateur, I don’t need a FX D800/D600 for the Cost involved of moving to Fx. I am a D7000 user & very content with the Image quality it is offering. The D7100 doesn’t help me either. And this seems to be a big Gap in the current Dx line up.

    Moving FX is not really a wise option for me. I save a lot of money by not moving to D600/D800 that I would rather prefer to put the amount saved towards an lens or some other accessory.

  49. 137
    ) w

    D400 with 24mpix and expeed 3 this is mission impossilble. Expeed 3 is to poor for 24mpix and 8 shots in sec.

  50. 139
    ) Rod

    No ‘professional’ APS cameras. Nearly nonexisting serious DX lenses lineup anyway.
    Problem ? Not at all: an used D700 or, if testing the AF(D) and AI lenses I have collected in many years will not be satisfactory on FX , Pentax offers all primes I want. And as long as the subject is not moving fast Fuji X’s work better then CaNikons. I will decide by year’s end.

  51. 140
    ) Tom

    What would be better for low light photography (weddings, parties, etc), the D7100 or D400? Or is there a better DX camera than these?

    • 183
      ) Vitaliy

      It is very likely that D400 and D7100 will have the same sensor. The difference will be in controls and possibly processing speed. Think D300 vs D90. I have D7100 and recently got a used D700. I can confidently say that for the low light I prefer D700 hands down. D7100 shines when you need high resolution in dissent light.

  52. 143
    ) Larry L

    I have a D300s and like it a lot except after about ISO 800 you start to see it loose image quality so a lot better high ISO performance is want to see in the D400. I have made 12 ft x 16 ft billboard prints with the 12 meg and they look great so the extra resolution is not a huge game changer to me. I was looking at the D800E for the build and ISO performance, but is a bit of a jump, also a 24 -70 is costly.

    I compared sided by side a new Sony SLR 24 meg w/ kit lens to my D300s w/ 16-85, 12 meg. My Nikon was still sharper. So I am not convinced after say 18 megs in DX the lenses can focus down on much more denser sensor except perhaps dead center stopped down.

    16meg DX is about 36meg FX, 24meg DX is about 54 meg FX.

    So why the cry for the needed technical ability when the D800 came out to fully utilize the “dense” sensor yet no mentioning using a 16,18 or 24 meg DX? Odd to me. Pixel density is pixel density.
    I also noticed studying lens performances, the DX lens are a bit better $ for $ in resolution.

    Except for shallower depth of field, sometimes needed, a DX camera that could do well in ISO, and a sharp lens could almost be as good an FX camera if not better getting more reach at less cost.

    • 145
      ) Chris Weller

      Agreed……but…. The big difference is processing bandwidth and it’s affect on FPS. 24 mp on DX has both higher pixel density than 36 on FX, but also significantly less information to process.

      • 147
        ) Larry L

        For shutter speed, processing the 24meg DX is still smaller but I am talking about the physical lens actually being able to focus down on each pixel.

  53. 153
    ) Karl Rahder

    I definitely agree that the 7100 is not the camera that serious DX shooters were looking for, and you nailed the buffer as the main issue. (I also agree that the Nikon hype about its build quality obscures the fact that the 7100 is not really up to “abuse it in the field” standards.) But I fear that your conclusion (“the D400 is definitely coming”), while seemingly logical, is not Nikon’s logic. The lack of a robust DX lens lineup, coupled with the yawning black hole out of Nikon’s PR department regarding the future of pro-level DX, is disconcerting. Let’s hope you are right and I am unduly pessimistic!

  54. 154
    ) Peter Scott O'Brien

    Hi,

    with the rumours about the D400 and – especially – a new AF module and Expeed 4 Processor coming, how to you estimate the Chances that Nikon will release a full frame Body in succession to the D800 line this or the next year?

    Cheers,
    Peter

  55. 155
    ) Mark

    With Canon 70D apparently coming, does this make a D400 more or less likely?

    • 158
      ) StevenP

      More likely if Canon were to announce a replacement to the 7D which would be the comparable model in the Canon series. For this reason, if it were the only one, I would say that rumours of a D400 would be true. To not have a comparable model would leave a void for Canon to fill.
      Its a pretty large gap in their model lineup. Many who own FX bodies look to owning a professional-level DX model, especially one whose controls and functions are similar.

    • “With Canon 70D apparently coming, does this make a D400 more or less likely?”
      Checking the specs of the 70 D including 20MP sensor, 7FPS, and not weather sealed, I don’t think the D70 has a real competitive advantage over the D7100. Since the D70 is just being announced, Nikon doesn’t have any competitive pressure to bring out a D400, unfortunately.

      • 161
        ) Greg Heller

        I expect from a marketing point of view that since there is a huge gap in both Nikon and Canon from $1200 to the $2000 mark that by the Christmas shopping time frame there will be the Nikon D-whatever and a Canon whatever-D models. The economy is finally showing signs of strong recovery, both companies are rumored to be bringing out new top-end models which really is a limited market comparatively speaking They’d be foolish to not bring out the cameras that every body has been clamoring about for the past few years and cash-in on Christmas sales. Neither company has been killing it for the past 5 years. JMHO

  56. 156
    ) Nikola

    People,
    There is no “news”, or “rumor” – and especially not “the same source” who leaked to Nasim “some info” about D400 or D7100 “last year”… Nasim Mansurov is just blshter… Hi is mentally ill…

    • 157
      ) Greg Heller

      Nikola: Why don’t you grow up, this forum is for adults to hold conversations, debate rumors, and just hang out and talk to each other on subjects that interest us. There is no room for grade school name calling or any other juvenile banter. Go find yourself another forum to hang out in.

      • 159
        ) StevenP

        She must be an troll…why even enter into the conversation without anything useful to say.
        Regardless of where the information originates, Nikon would probably find these message boards interesting. They need to gauge public interest in these models, pretty expensive endeavour to bring out a new model especially in this range.

        • 162
          ) Larry L

          Well I hope Nikon reads this, to improve on quality control. That was one main reason I decided to wait on the D800E. After my D70 stopped reading cards well to, 3 D90s, and I am now on my second D300s. I hate to buy anything that may be problematic dispite it being a “Great New Version”.
          I would like to see a non video solid built camera like the D700 with better resolution, and even better ISO performance. I would not drag around a D800E with a 24 -70 ($5000) camera set up for little family events just to take a video clip. Perhaps it is the age we live in. MORE, MORE, MORE!. I remember my 330s 2 1/4 Mamiya, it did not even have a meter yet it was about all about the camera, photographer, and the subject. Now the computer seems to be trying to crowd in too much trying to replace the photographer. But that might just be me since I had to learn everything without it including design engineering.

          • 163
            ) Frank Jr.

            I couldn’t agree more about a solid built FX camera without video! I use a video camera for video. My heart will always be with still images, that capture a moment in time like no video camera can.

            • 164
              ) Larry L

              Perhaps the cost after the fact of a chip that does video to simplify would be more.

              I think the pro level SLRs or at least one model should be designed for who would really use them,,,stills and not try to compete with the I phone, and entry level SLRs designed for the masses with all their bells and whistles.

              Less is more, in this case and less to go wrong.

              The pro photographers I know and have worked with, like me, have no use for video.

            • 165
              ) Greg Heller

              I wonder how much adding video capabilities to a DSLR really costs? I for one have no real need for it and if I could save money by not having it I would be all for that. They need to have one model DX and one FX model without it. The D400 or the D400V – The D5 and D5V. That works for me.

            • 166
              ) Larry L

              Live view however can be handy yet not a game changer.

              Here’s what I would like to see;
              For an FX sensor, 36 meg, 18, 9 , & 3 meg options with a raw option at 18 meg also and higher frame rates as you decrease file size, great color depth, and ISO performance and OK throw in HDR, Also same build a or better as D800. Flash sync at 250/sec or faster and most important, much better QC. For fast wide open sports shots for me 12 megs is plenty since the image sharpness is more limited to trying to freeze the action than not having enough pixiels, unless cropped a lot.
              For DX, (D400) same as above but say 18 -20 meg being the max size since most lens cannot focus down much finer than that to really utilize a more dense sensor.

        • 176
          ) Nikola

          Hi StevenP, I might be anything – even that “troll” thing occasionally, but I am not “she”. And even if I was (and if you were misogynist) I thought that you would understand that I actually wanted to be “useful”… I am sorry if I offended you, or anyone, but I could not know that you people happily identify with Nasim Mansurov…

          If it might help you to understand and excuse me please read this too: Hi Greg, I do not know if you and StevenP call it adult/grown up but I am 65 years old (and 50 years old as a photographer)… And, I am certainly interested in conversation/discussion about all/any photography subject… But, before all, I was/am interested in getting some/couple of new/latest DX cameras in the “semiprofessional” D100/200/300/…400!?? line for my business (www.nixfoto.com.au)! That is why/how I arrived here. But, while looking (googuling) for some news about what to expect I accidentally found Nasim Mansuriov – and now you and StevenP… Photographers like myself might never “grow up” – but, believe or not, that might be the best part of being it. And it is certainly better than to be “adults” who “debate rumors” and “hold conversations” about nothing, or about rumors…

      • 175
        ) Nikola

        Hi Greg, I do not know if you and StevenP call it adult/grown up but I am 65 years old (and 50 years old as a photographer)… And, I am certainly interested in conversation/discussion about all/any photography subject… But, before all, I was/am interested in getting some/couple of new/latest DX cameras in the “semiprofessional” D100/200/300/…400!?? line for my business (www.nixfoto.com.au)! That is why/how I arrived here. But, while looking (googuling) for some news about what to expect I accidentally found Nasim Mansuriov – and now you and StevenP… Photographers like myself might never “grow up” – but, believe or not, that might be the best part of being it. And it is certainly better than to be “adults” who “debate rumors” and “hold conversations” about nothing, or about rumors…

  57. 167
    ) Umit Dolap

    I am delighted to hear that it’s very likely that Nikon will release a D400. I am a second hand camera user and I have 2 D300 cameras for my work in nature/macro photography. I have checked out some websites about release of a D300 follow-up, but after hearing that the D7100 would be their flagship DX I started thinking about Canon bodies. Problem is that I would have to sell all my glass and buy Canon glass, which I am not comfortable in doing.

    I have to say, after having used the Nikon D50, the D70 and the D90, the D300 is the one of my choice because the controls feel more intuitive to me and it has a very impressive autofocus system. Upgrading to a D700 is not an option for me at this moment, because I find glass more important than a body.

    Again, I am very happy to hear that very likely there will come a D300 follow-up and when these models will be sold second hand I will have a capable replacement with newer technology and the intuitive feel that my D300′s give me now.

    Nasim, many thanks for your info.

  58. 168
    ) Anonymous Maximus

    D800 @ DX mode is already a hypothetical D400, except for

    * price tag

    * reduced viewfinder area

    * less fps

    • 170
      ) Mark

      Yea…that price tag is a gotcha for many

    • 181
      ) Larry L

      It would be nice if Nikon would have made the D400 the same camera as the D800E with it’s great ISO and color depth and dynamic range performance but shave off the sensor size. To me the one big reason for using an FX camera is the much better ISO performance. The technology was there over a year ago with the D800 popping up. Even using that now “older technology”, the speed and buffer would automaticly be better with the smaller sensor. So if everything was the same you would have a “D800″ that only does 15 meg crop mode. That would be a lot better than my D300s and the D7100 for most things.

  59. 169
    ) DA

    Anonymous Maximus,

    I hope you don’t mind if I append a few items to your list.

    * Size – DX cameras tend to be lighter than Full Frame cameras

    * Weight – DX cameras tend to be lighter than Full Frame equivalents

    * Lenses. If one is willing to use DX lenses then there is a saving in size, weight and cost

  60. 173
    ) Larry L

    I was thinking about when DX can be better, like trying to get more reach in wildlife and sports with lenses that only have to be about 2/3 as long thus lower in price. Add a nice buffer and better ISO capabilities and you will have it. The larger FX sensor is not always better, expecially for micro work where you need more depth of field. So bring on the D400. I would have went with the D7100 but I want a better, easyer to use, body like the D300 and hope to have much better ISO. Having both DX and FX can bring you a lot of versalility, there is room for both in my bag.

  61. 174
    ) Carl TightShooster

    I would like to see more innovation from Nikon;
    -> like Fujifilm
    see no furhter develoment really happened since intro of D200 for APS-C
    only the more – more features, more pixel – but this is not equivalent with an increase of innovation.
    and I would like to have max 18MP for APS-C sensors

    cheers
    /Karl

  62. 177
    ) Brent

    The D400 will be announced within two months.

  63. Let me tell you the truth about the Nikon D400.
    It will come out between August 1, 2013 and August 1, 2014.
    It will have between 16 and 24 megapixels.
    It will be a complete beast according to its weather sealing and weight.
    It will come with a new kit lens (Maybe a new 16-85mm?)
    It will have AT LEAST 8 fps.
    It will have an amazing buffer that can do circles around the D7100.
    It will be between 1500 and 2100 dollars.
    I will be buying it when it comes out.

  64. 182
    ) Pedro G Herrera-Davila

    02 Aug 2013

    Mr Mansurov:

    I agree with you all. Your comments are all interesting and the points you raise are valid…which is why I continue to read Photography Life. I respectfully invite you to consider a few sobering thoughts that came to mind as I (as usual) carefully study your post and the comments thereto sent in.

    1. Because it has a magical effect on me, I continue to wish I would qualify for the term “professional photographer” – but I don’t deserve that honor. I confess my passion for photography. As a barrister with no formal education in this great field, I attended various short seminars but remain mostly self-taught, thanks to generous people like you who unselfishly share your unquestionable expertise. Years ago my journey began with an FM2, slowly graduated to the F5, reluctantly went digital, and now just dream about Nikon the fabulous new equipment that I cannot afford to purchase. I am happy with my F3, D300 and 4 primes that are excellent. I cannot afford to “migrate” to anything else.

    2. After all that has been said and done, and despite the great technological advances embodied in the new equipment…with an never-ending stream of still newer and greater things to come, we still hold Ansel Adams and other similarly great photographers in awe. What this means to me is that photographs, i.e., the end result, is what really counts. All the fabulous modern developments inevitably lead to that “final result”. For this reason, I will continue to try to improve myself by studying photography and practicing it in my little way with my humble, outdated equipment. In all likelihood I will continue wishfully thinking about having the great new products that enter the market each year. But as I get on in years and now face the twilight of my life [I suffered a stroke twice but remain active], I declare that I am deeply grateful to photography and to brilliant photographers – like you and the rest at Photography Life…as well as to those who send in their comments. Thank you all for enriching my life. And God bless you all.

    • 184
      ) Larry L

      Thanks Pedro, that was very well said. All the greatest advances and the now “new need” will never replace the artist behind the camera. I went 20-25 years with a couple of OM1s, 3 primes and a Mamiya 330s for weddings, all simple manual cameras.

  65. 185
    ) TS

    Hi all. I don’t know if this will affect the release date of the D400 at all, but according to a very recent post in Canon Rumors it appears that the Canon 7D Mark II will not be released before the second half of 2014. Just thought I would mention it.

    http://www.canonrumors.com/

  66. 186
    ) James

    If Nikon does not produce a D400 soon, then they will not see my business again. Have been waiting for years, disasters in Japan etc. the fact is that I have a job to do and the 12mp Camera’s are now outdated and clients demand more and bigger prints. The D800/e is a dog I don’t want on my land as it is slow and does not suit my workflow. The D3x low light is poor and D3s is also 12 mp. The D4 is very expensive. The current DX range all have 24 mp sensors with no buffer. The D600 body could not take it and is a modified D7000. I recently rented a Sony A77 with 70-400 for a trip. Results where great and could get action series shots without problems, I missed the Nikon body layout and control. Or do I go to Canon ans sell my Nikon lenses worth $ 10 000 ?

    • 187
      ) Vitaliy

      Why sell? Just give them away as a sign of frustration!
      I will come pick them up from you ;-)

      What kind of work do you do that you need both super-high resolution and super-fast speed?
      (and D4 is too much for you)
      Are you sure the low-light performance of DX will be sufficient for you?
      If so, will you complain that Nikon does not make free cameras that make pictures in absolute darkness at 100 frames per second? :-)

      • 188
        ) Larry L

        Is it even possable in the real world, to nail the focus with high enough shutter speed to make a sharp enough photo to make use of all 24 megs of DX? I can see perhaps a stopped down, centrer area, still shot.

      • 189
        ) James

        Vitality, I started photography in 1972 working professionally for 30 yrs doing wildlife and nature photography in places you have never been to and never will get to. Read what Inwrote again and put your narsistic remarks in you back pocket and sit on it. I wanted to use a different expression but I will behave. I hid not say I need super high resolution, I need higher than 12 mp as my prints for clients demand it. I don’t need 100 fps I can work with 9-12 like the D3s or D700. If the product you supported for 30 yrs cannot support you in spite of the investment you made over 30 yrs, and your income depends on it than it becomes a problem. And forget it, you will not get a lens…through my work with others we try and save nature and animals such as the Rhino’s, leopards, elephants of being poached and killed to the extend that nothing is left. A lot of what is done in low light and the need to operate at high speed..so

        • 192
          ) Vitaliy

          Wow, wow, wow!
          James, did you have a bad day? What got you so upset? Narsisistic?!
          Sorry, for not being too all those place you have been and not doing photography for as long as you have been :-)
          But coming back to the question of cameras and what you wrote …
          You said the performance of D3x in low light is to poor for you, but you are waiting for D400, and this damn Nikon does not want to give you one :-)
          It seams that D400 is likely to have the same sensor as D7100. And D3x has about half a stop better performance than D7100. So, if D3x is not good enough for you why do you think D400 will be?
          Also, if you are doing photography professionally in all those places I have never been and will never go to, and you need all that firepower, shouldn’t D4 be a consideration?

          • 193
            ) Graham Blaikie

            It is hard to know with Nikon what the sensor will be. It would be logical to think it would be the one in the D7100 but that camera did not have the already existing 24MP sensor from the D5200, so I would expect Nikon to do something new with the D400 sensor, perhaps a more developed version, hopefully with slightly better noise performance and slightly better dynamic range. One would expect that to be possible given half a year has passed since the D7100 announcement.

          • 196
            ) Jorge Balarin

            Vitaliy, in this forum we are not interested in childish discussions. James has expressed a wish and I do not understand why you answer him in an unkind way.

            • 197
              ) Vitaliy

              I am not interested in childish discussions either. This is a camera forum and this is my main interest here.
              There was no offense intended in my original comment to James and I thought the humor nature of the comment was obvious. Apparently not …

          • 203
            ) Jorge Balarin

            Good to know that you didn’t want to offend anybody. In internet sometimes humor is not so obvious. Best wishes, Jorge.

    • 190
      ) Brent

      I beleive that Nikon will release both the D400 and D4x in September. Hang in there folks!

      • 191
        ) Greg Heller

        Brent – We are all hanging but our faces are turning purple and the hearse just backed up to the gallows. I sure hope this is true, It seems like I’ve been sitting on this little pile of money earmarked D400 forever and I’ve been fighting the full-frame fever for almost a year.

        • 198
          ) Larry L

          LOL, I hope Nikon reads your post. So many of us are waiting and I too, trying to hold off on FX.

  67. 194
    ) Chris Weller

    Two points:

    1. 193 comments on this post, still active months after the initial post…..’nough said about how important this camera is.

    2. Those who argue that higher end camera’s like a D400, D4, D800 aren’t as important as consumer and prosumer camera’s becuase the prosumer camera’s sell 5-10x the units and are more profitable are missing and important point. BRAND. These high end pro camera’s provide massive, PASSIVE profit to Nikon. Joe McNally would be shooting Canon or Sony if all Nikon offered was a D3200 or a D5200. Dave Black, Scott Kelby, Bill Frakes etc…people (in part) buy consumer Nikon Camera’s because they see their idols shooting Nikon. If these camera’s didn’t exist every sporting event would be filled with white lenses as would every safari and bird park.

    Pro’s and Serious amatuer sports and wildlife shooters, want…dare I say, need a D400 Model. If Canon happens to beat Nikon to the market with a new prograde DX camera, it would be damaging to the Nikon brand. Photographers serious about sports and wildlife want the reach, pixel density, buffer, weathersealing, and fps that a modern pro-caliber DX camera would provide. There is a gaping hole in the Nikon line-up that needs to be filled asap. I really want this camera.

    If Canon had a 7d mark II right now, I would buy it and a 400 f/4 DO lens, and I strongly dislike canon ergonomics. I’m Nikon, through and through, but this combinatino would provide something that Nikon has no answer for. It would be my primary daytime sports/wildlife system. I hope Nikon fills the void soon.

    • well said, Chris.

    • Chris, I just spent 5 days at the US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach California and the vast majority of lenses around me were white. I would have thought that Nikon would have taken back some of the sports market by now. If Canon upgraded their 100-400 like Nikon just upgraded their 80-400, Nikon would be in an even bigger hole.

    • 205
      ) Jaques

      I also just returned from a trip to Tanzania shooting wildlife with a group of international photographers, all enthusiast. Most of them have a DX and FX body using either a 200-400 zoom or a long prime like the 300 f2.8 with converters or 500 f4 and a 70-200 f2.8 for closer shots. Canon made out 80% of the equipment. There were at least 8 people who changed from Nikon to Canon in the past 12 months. D7 and 5diii combinations made out most of the rigs. My D3s low light ability kicked some butt, however the D300s is starting to show its age . The 5diii is an impressive camera…

  68. 199
    ) Tom

    Does anyone believe that the d40o will be better in low light than the d7100? Or will it be the same? The only reason I would wait for the d400 is if it will be better in low light than the d7100. I don’t want to wait for nothing. What do you think?

    • 200
      ) Vitaliy

      Producing new sensors is expensive. Therefore there is a tendency to use the same sensors in different cameras. I believe the relation between D400 and D7100 will be the same as between D300(s) and D90. That is the sensor will be the same, but the controls and the build quality and operation productivity will be better on D400.

      For many the buffer size of D7100 is a big limitation. Also there are quite a few people that would prefer the D800-like controls and the settings banks. The body of D7100 could also be made more rugged. These are all the improvements people will be willing to pay for and they don’t require as much investment from Nikon as development of a new sensor just for D400. The only exception is the EXPEED processor, but it has to be developed anyway and it will be used on many other cameras as well.

      Bottom line: from the point of view of economy it makes sense to keep the same processor in D400 as in D7100 and focus on improving other elements of performance. So, if low-light performance is a deciding factor for you maybe it is time to look at other options like D800, D600 or a used D700.

      Recently, I got both D7100 and a used D700. Unless I am doing video, macro or bird photography I prefer to use D700. Low light performance on it is outstanding and you can get them now for around $1500.

    • 201
      ) Chris Weller

      My guess is that if the D400 comes out anytime between now and February of 2014 it will have the same Toshiba sensor as the D7100 and as such will likely have similiar, but possibly not exactly the same low light performance. Nikon could use the same sensor but have additional tweaks that could improve low-light.

      My advice would be to wait through September to see a d400 is announced. If not, and Low light is the only thing you need an upgrade from the d7100 for, then just get the d7100. Even if it is better, my guess it wouldn’t be enough to warrant the addtional items that you may not need (fps, build, buffer).

      Then again if low light is important and you aren’t as concerned about AF, then I would just get the D600 now. It is far, far better in low light than anything aps-c. Something like 1 -2 stops better than the d7100.

    • 210
      ) Larry L

      Tom that may be the biggest factor at hand that FX has over DX. I feel the same way also. I wander if the better ISO for FX meant to stay in place t0 guard the FX sales. As I had mentioned before, just downsizing the D800′s sensor to DX (about 15 meg) would have given DX outstanding ISO and that would be using “old” last years technology.

      • 212
        ) Vitaliy

        Larry, that is an interesting economy question. What would generate more interest among the typical consumers a DX camera with 24 meg D7100-like sensor or a 16 meg D800-like sensor?
        Also, when they are measuring high-ISO performance, do they measure that for the whole sensor (regardless of the number of pixels) or per certain number of pixels (say 100 by 100 pixels)?
        This question is related to the performance of D800 in DX-mode vs D7000.
        In other words, if Nikon was to make a camera with D800 sensor cropped to the DX size, how much better would be the performance of this camera at high ISO compared to D7000?

        • 217
          ) Larry L

          When I view the data of the D800 and the test photos, the ISO performance is great and the dymamic range, the details in the shadows, is even better than the Mark 3. But you have a good point about veiwing the noise more zoomed in with the DX format. I forgot about that factor. For testing the ISO you need both cameras, setting the D800 in DX crop mode.

          Where’s Ken R. when you need him.

          I would like to see The ISO to go down to 25 for digitals (remember Kodachrome 25, I loved that film,,) so I can add a touch of fill light using larger apertures. My old D70 flash synced at 1/500 sec like my old Mamiya 330s’ leaf shutter. There seems to be no talk desiring lower ISO settings.

  69. 202
    ) Jacques

    The D400 is a key camera for Nikon as a lot of wildlife and bird photographers require the reach. I work with a lot of Pro Photographers that use the D3s and D4 that has also adopted the D800/e with its high resolution to allow them to either shoot in 1.2 or 1.5 crop mode or post crop images. The D800 real low ISO performance is however not as good as Nikon claim it to be. So for Nikon to produce a killer product the D400 need to have D4 performance. A 16 mp sensor with 2600 ISo performance and a big buffer with high fps (9plus) would be a killer product. In DX 16-18 mp is already a lot of data. The problem here would be if Nikon goes for 24 mp, the high resolution will be a problem for high iso noise and buffer capacity and speed. The Delma is that Canon will throw a 20+ mp sensor in the 7Dii and Nikon will lose the MP war. The other problem is that with Digital we are losing the concept of Camera’s build to purpose. Nikon build the D800 and everybody have to cope/make do with the camera, the D4 is so expensive that very few people can afford it. The D7100 is great with its focus system and 24 mp sensor and in my view the DX camera that does the same job as the D800 for DX users. Slow, fair ISO performance with great resolution sensor. Yes it is not a Pro body but for studio, fine art and landscape work and single shot bird and wildlife photographers does a great job. So who knows what and if Nikon will produce a D400. I still use a D300s and D3s. I use both with 300mm f2.8 with TC1.4 and TC 2.0 and 70-200 with TC1.4. I do wildlife 90% of the time and 10 % landscape with 16-35 f4. I don’t know what the next DX upgrade will be. Lets see?

    • 206
      ) Chris Weller

      Personally, I would love to see the D400 with a new, Nikon made 16-18 MP sensor. Low light should be 1/2 to 1 stop better than D7000, 8-9 fps, 51 point af and 30 shot raw buffer. That camera would make a statement.

      Unfortunately, my guess is that Nikon will not put out anything less than 24 mp. They really should, though. The person who buys a D400 is sophisticated enough to understand the trade-off’s/advantages; in my opinion getting 16-18 mp in late 2013 is a better overall camera than 20-24 MP, because it would be better low light (1/2 stop?), more fps – 8 instead of 7? Sure the extra pixel density would be nice, but (at least for me), not at the expense of ISO performance or FPS.

      Additionally, if Canon doesn’t release a 7D Mark II for another year, putting out and 18 MP DX sensor in the D400 now, would not be a marketing issue because the 7D mark II is so far out in the future.

      24 mp DX is diffracting by F/8 and I shoot at F/8 a lot for wildlife (never for sports, though). Perhaps we will get lucky and get an awesome new 18 mp Nikon sensor. I think the delay in this camera is that they can’t don’t currently have enough processing horsepower to make a 24 mp perform. If they weren’t going with 24 mp, they would have released the camera by now.

  70. 207
    ) Graham Blaikie

    I think it comes down to “horses for courses”. No one camera can fill all requrements. I have been perfectly happy with 12.3 megapixels so a 16MP sensor would be a plus. But seeing what Nikon has done with the sensor in the D7100 I would be happy with that. A 16MP sensor would demand an AA filter so going without one would demand 24MP or higher. As most have pointed out the D400 would be perfect for sports and wildlife/bird photography – low light performance is not such an issue. There are other choices where low light performance is important.

    While we have all been talking about what sensor the D400 might have, what else could EXPEED 4 bring, apart from faster speed? It won’t be just speed. (From WIKI): The EXPEED processor performs a high number of tasks: Bayer filtering, demosaicing, image sensor corrections/dark-frame subtraction, image noise reduction, image sharpening, image scaling, gamma correction, image enhancement/Active D-Lighting, colorspace conversion, chroma subsampling, framerate conversion, lens distortion/chromatic aberration correction, image compression/JPEG encoding, video compression, display/video interface driving, digital image editing, face detection, audio processing/compression/encoding and computer data storage/data transmission. I would expect to see improvements in picture processing, better noise reduction, better Active D-Light performance, better video capture/processing, improved JPEG engine, all on top of what ever improvements come with the sensor. I am expecting next-generation technology.

    • 208
      ) Chris Weller

      Great points Graham. I had thought about the AA filter as well. I don’t fully understand what the cross-over point may be, but it’s my understanding that 16 mp dx is 36 FF and the D800 offers and e version without AA. So perhaps 16 mp DX would warrant no AA as well. Perhaps, there isn’t a direct correlation.

      In terms of all those things that expeed engine does, it appears most, maybe nearly all those operations are relevant only to JPG’s. So, I’m guessing expeed 4 would have very little if any affect on raw sensor data and therefore raw picture quality. I could be wrong, though as I’m not totally familiar with the details of some of those operations.

      Anyhow, I did read somewhere that Nikon could not release a d400 with enough spec using the expeed3 and that they are pushing the expeed4 final spec through the system as fast as possible and when it’s available we will see a number of new higher end camera’s and perhaps a new Nikon1. The article also said they will have a new AF system along with expeed4. All great stuff.

      A lot of people are hoping and some fully expecting for D4x and D400 within the next 45 days. I am skeptical, though, because my intuition is telling me expeed4 won’t be ready until 2014.

      My guess is we will see D4x, D400 and Nikon V3 in February of 2014. If we get anything sooner, I would be thrilled, but moderately surprised.

      • 209
        ) Chris Weller

        One point I didn’t make is that it seems that expeed4 and 24 mp sensor line up, because the D4 uses expeed3 at 16 mp and is capable of 11 fps of data flow (10 fps with active autofocus, but that doesn’t appear to be a product of expeed3 speed). So, if they were going to use 16 mp in the d400, they had the spec to do it long ago, yet no D400 as of yet. I think 24 mp is where it will come in.

      • 211
        ) Graham Blaikie

        Regarding EXPEED process on RAW, I found this elsewhere: “While the Expeed processor is not performing a RAW processing for the main image in the NEF, it is still in the datapath when shooting RAW and is still performing a process to JPEG for the JPEG preview image in the NEF. Also it does perform some post-capture functions that affect RAW. So an increase in its performance will speed up things even when shooting RAW.”

        In this link: http://tinyurl.com/mwgxk77 you see a few pages from David Busch’s Nikon D3s/D3x Guide to Digital SLR Photography explaining all about how EXPEED processes RAW.

        Many people shoot JPEG. I do. In the past I shot on slide film where you had to get it right when shooting. I understand how cameras meter scenes (pre-matrix) and am able to shoot accurately exposed photos consistently (modern cameras can get it wrong automatically!). I have actually had written commendation on the evenness of my exposures from a photo lab! Switching to digital was a steep learning curve. But I have a lot of settings on manual, including WB. I enable Active D-Lighting, mostly in auto, but sometimes use a manual setting. I have also tweeked the sharpness settings for the JPEG modes (Nikon default setting is a bit on the soft side). I rarely need to do any manipulation on the picture and find that when I do, shooting in JPEG Fine gives me enough latitude for small adjustments. I have had some 24×16″ prints made and had to ask the printer whether they had done any processing on the pictures given how good the prints looked. They hadn’t. But I would still welcome any improvements to the JPEG engine. Having said that I have compared well-exposed RAW with its camera JPEG Fine (sharpness boosted) and could not detect any difference. JPEG is good enough for me.

        • 213
          ) Larry L

          I have shot slides for many years too, things were different then.

          With Light Room fixing jpegs is much better with more laditude for adjustments, I was amazed when I first tried it and question the file if it was raw.

  71. 218
    ) Jack

    The need is very clear. a D300s upgrade in the same body and layout with the top left layout like the D800. But Nikon will go for a 24 mp sensor with ISO performance the same as the D7100 and a slightly bigger buffer. in DX they will struggle to get ISO performance higher than 1600.

    The problem faced by photographers vs manufacturers is the MP wars. Nikon has become obsessed with 24 mp and higher. Canon is still doing 20 mp and their users are very happy. I watched the Athletics world championships currently taking place and look at the equipment used by the photographers, I am shocked to see how much Canon equipment is used. I just returned form a Wildlife trip to Africa and again Nikon made up less than 20 % of the equipment used. Among the photographers are people that own Nikon but rented Canon equipment. it was a group of 30 photographers from 16 different countries. Most of them had 2 bodies 7D and either the 5D3 of 1D range. I spoke to most who use the 7D and they all know that Canon will produce an upgrade as the 7D as it is such a good DX camera. Make no mistake, I love Nikon but it is time they start to address the gaps in their range. I see it as follows. a D300s upgrade with 20-24 mp sensor and ISO performance up to 2400. A general use FX D750 with a 20-24 mp with D4 performance. D4x sensor upgrade to 20-24 mp. even an upgrade of the D600 with same sensor but with D7100 focus system and a few smaller tweaks.

    • 220
      ) Vitaliy

      Jack, would you mind commenting on what those photographers liked about 7D that they could not find in D7000 or D7100?

    • 221
      ) Vitaliy

      Also, Jack, where did you come up with ISO 2400 for D400 (I assume this is a successor to D300s) when you just said it is likely to have the same ISO performance of D7100?
      Do you not consider D400 to be a successor to D300s?
      You also suggested that ISO 1600 on DX will be hard to beat, which I agree with at current megapixel level. So, it was strange to see 2400 as the number for the ISO on D400. Was it a typo?

      • 222
        ) Jack

        Vanity in reply, the Canon guys use a total Canon system so they will not consider the D7000 or D7100. The 7D has the pro body and 18 mp sensor, I don’t know about the rest of the performance, my point is that they use Pro FF bodies like the 5D3 and the 1Dx and use the 7D side by side. Nikon D7000 and D7100 are no semi pro or Pro bodies and don’t have a upgraded D300s that they can use side by side with the D800 or D4. They all rave about the 7D.

        My point about 2400 ISO performance referred to the target performance for the D400, that is what will set it apart as a DX camera, but I said Nikon will most likely bring it out with ISO performance on par with the D7100. The reason for my statement is that the D300s ISO performance is the same as the D90.

        • 224
          ) Vitaliy

          Jack, for Canon users of FF to use a Canon DX camera is natural, as they can use the same lenses.
          The question is about Nikon users that were using Canon equipment.
          Were they using Canon for its FF or DX or combo?

          I agree that D400 should have the professional body. Do you not think that the professional body with D7100 sensor will make D400 stand out?

          If one can trust the basic information on snapsort.com the high ISO performance of 7D is comparable to that of D300s and is worse than that of D7000. If there were Nikon users that were raving 7D it must have been for the professional body and professional controls. So, D400 will be raved simply for the professional body without having to bump ISO above that of D7100′s performance.

          • 226
            ) StevenP

            Clarification. Canon lenses are not interchangeable between the small-sensor (ASPC) and the full sensor cameras.
            If you want inter-operability you need to purchase the EF lenses, not the EF-S lenses. The EF-S lenses are equivalent to the Nikon DX lenses, are normally cheaper, lighter but not as high quality.

            The lens barrel is too long for the FX cameras such as the 5dmkIII or 6d and will hit the mirror. Canon has prevented their use with changes to the mount.

            This is one benefit of the Nikon series which does allow, in cropped mode, you to use the DX lenses on your FX camera body.

            • 228
              ) Jack

              Steven, thanks for this but lenses was not the issue. You can use any L lens from canon on the DX and FX Camera’s from Canon. These people will never use anything but the best lenses. For Nikon, to use a DX lens on a FX body is a wast of money. Buy a $2500 camera with a $ 200 DX zoom is a waste. I have a 70-200 f2.8 VR1 this is a FX lens but wide open this lens does not perform well on a FX camera. It is however very good on DX. Even the new 70-200 f4 perform better on DX than FX.

  72. 219
    ) Greg

    I’m right with you on all of that Jack — I’m not sure that Nikon listens to anyone outside of Japan, I believe their divisions in other countries are distribution channels only. They very seldom make any news releases unless it’s to parrot Nikon Japan on an official announcements. The comments the other day about their financial situation kind of revealed that they didn’t understand why the Nikon 1 wasn’t selling well in Europe and North America — Women in Japan have received it very well, it seems Europe and America only like heavy DSLR’s. Nikon Japan does not know their customer base, if they did they wouldn’t make comments like this. It is so frustrating to stay loyal to a company that doesn’t know you are alive.

  73. 223
    ) Brian

    There is a lot of discussion (and, I think, confusion) about ISO noise performance. It really depends on two things: the sensor’s size and what tech generation it is. For a given print size, the number of pixels will not affect the amount of noise. If you are pixel-peeping, yes you will see a difference because you are looking at different magnifications, but not at the same printed size. See DXOmark. A hypothetical D400 will not have better noise performance than D7100 unless it has new sensor tech. I doubt if that is coming at this time.

    A D400 *should* have professional build, controls, accessories, speed that the D7100 lacks, but I strongly doubt that it would give you significantly better quality photographs. Why has it taken so long to bring it out (assuming it really is coming)? They needed a faster frame rate, which requires the development of a new processor to push all those pixels. They also need faster memory cards, see the recent Toshiba SD card announcement. I hope this means they are moving away from CF and its easily bent connector pins.

    If they would put phase detect AF on the sensor, that would make the camera truly tempting for me.

    The Nikon 1 system failed in the US because of poor ergonomics and high price.

    Jack, of the people who owned Nikon equipment but were renting Canon, do you remember what they were using? Was it a mix of both brands?

    • 225
      ) Jack

      The Nikon people that rented Canon all have D800/e that they brought along to shoot landscapes and one used it with a 500 f4. They rented 5D3′s with battery grips and long zoom 200-400 and 500 f4′s for faster shooting and as they stated ” don’t get the high mp shake effect” the 5D3 is viewed a a very good all purpose camera. The one who used the D800 with 500 f5 rented a7D with a 200-400 f4 for ” flexibility and ended up shooting it most of the time. I know a number of Pro wildlife photographers that integrated D800 into their systems but their primary Camera’s remain the D3s or D4 for speed and Low light. A number of them still use D3x for landscapes rather than D800. So there is no clear cut answer. But for me, I want to upgrade from D300 and D700, what options do I have? D7100 does not cut it, D800 is a step down in speed and the 36 mp is way over what I need and my workflow can handle. D600 is a step down except for sensor, D4 is way to expensive, D3s is only upgrade in ISO performance and speed that I don’t need more off. I can assure you there are many people in this position. The Canon 7D is 18mp and offer great performance but lack on the focus system but comes in a Pro body. The 5D3 has proven itself as a fantastic camera with a 22 mp camera with great low light performance and speed.

      • 227
        ) Vitaliy

        I see your point.

      • 229
        ) Chris Weller

        Exactly my point. Nikon sells 5 current tech dslr bodies and none of them satisfies the enthusiast/pro wildlife/bird photographer. They also sell 2 mirrorless and 3 or 4 other dslr models with outdated tech.

        For sports shooters who want current tech, you have to spend $6k on a D4. Given how disconnected I believe Nikon is to the market outside of Japan, I think they are going to be pleasantly surprised how well a properly spec’d D400 will sell in America. It’s a gaping hole in the line-up that will be perfect for wildlife and a much less expensive option for pro-level daytime sports shooting.

  74. 230
    ) Chris Weller

    As a related point. In my experience, you cannot achieve professional level results shooting outdoor nighttime sports with a DX camera in anything less than a professional arena. I shoot everything from Div I college football to little league baseball and I find that I need ISO 4000-5000 for the college stadium and 6400-10000 for little league (at least in my area). Anything above 2000 ISO on my D7000 starts to look questionable. 3200 can work with a fair amount of post, but anything higher is very obviously inferior.

    Wheras my D4, I can shoot at 12,800 and get similar results to my D7000 at 2000 on my D7000. Having said that my D4 is just not suited to bird photography. The weight and pixel density are just just not appropriate. That is why I say the D400 would be great for daytime sports and birders. It would be a really awesome camera for a lot of my shooting situations. I would even prefer it for daytime sports because I get some free reach and can use smaller less heavy glass. Lugging around big glass on that D4 is a labor of love.

    • 231
      ) Vitaliy

      Chris, what ISO are you expecting from D400?
      You realize that D7100′s sensor high ISO performance is not much better than D7000, right?

      • 232
        ) Vitaliy

        Chris, I misread your message :-)
        The whole point of it was that D400 should not be viewed as a low-light champion. My apologies!

        • 233
          ) Jack

          The point with the D400 is this. Sport and wildlife shooters should be the target market and it is the fastest growing sector of the DSLR market. It is one section of the market that Mobile phones cannot take away from DSLR, not even the fixed lens camera’s can do that as the IQ is just to bad at the long end. nikon is missing this trick as they focus on the market where they think high mp and photo art in Japan and other urban markets will safe the day for them. Fort Nikon to hurt the opposition they need 2 camera’s that will work for the nature/sport and wildlife/bird market. a DX for reach with low light performance of ISO that produce good results at 2400 +/- plus good speed and buffer, and for a FX with the speed and low light performance of the D3s but in a D700/D800 body with +/- 20 mp sensor. Start to build camera’s for specific markets, all photographers are getting more educated and you cant fool them any longer by just pushing a high MP camera in the market.. Car manufacturers, mobile phone makers, PC makers etc, produce products build for purpose, Nikon build to spec and expect photographers to adopt technology that does not fit them..

          • 234
            ) Chris Weller

            +1

            I don’t expect anything more than 2500 ISO performance out of a DX camera. I would actually prefer that they stick with 16 or go 18 mp and have acceptable performance at 3200, but either way is fine. As long as ISO performance does not go backward as a result of some crazy idea to have a D400 with > 24 MP.

            This is another reason why I don’t think mirrorless is going to take over DSLR’s any time soon. It’s tough to get 2000 ISO out of DX, if it’s mirrorless you loose something like 30% of the light. I have a friend with the Sony 24 MP DX and 800-1000 ISO on it looks like 2200-2500 on my D7000.

            It’s crazy that they haven’t updated this camera for, what is it now, 6 years or something. Considering that they put out 2 or 3 new consumer dslr’s every year. A properly spec’d D400 is a unique camera that no other camera can touch M 4/3, FF, current DX. Nothing and there I think there is a big market for it. Hopefully Nikon agrees.

            • 235
              ) Vitaliy

              Indeed, it seams Nikon had to skip a D300x version with D7000 sensor, possibly due to the disasters (and hence production limitations). It would have been an awesome camera if it was produced even today. Nikon probably estimated that it is economically better for them to skip a generation (which would have had a shorter run) and focus their resources on the next generation D400 with D7100 sensor. We don’t know in details the conditions in which they had to make their production decisions. So it would not be appropriate for us to judge them. Ultimately, it is in their interest to produce great cameras that sell, but since they are trying to maximize their profits they have to be smart about it.

              Hopefully, the build and the speed of D400 does not disappoint and we can go back to praising Nikon :-)

            • 236
              ) Graham Blaikie

              When the D400 is finally announced it will be around six or seven months after the announcement of the D7100. In that time I am sure there will be further developments on the sensor so if it is to be the one from the D7100 I am hoping that it will be improved in noticeable ways. They have had plenty of time to do so. But a completely new sensor in the 16-18MP range would be optimal, as Chris says, with optimisations on noise performance. But, given the development of EXPEED 4 I suspect it will more likely be the 24MP we have been expecting, hopefully with significant improvements.

              It will be interesting to see how the new advanced 51-point AF system turns out, whether it will have the AF benefits for video as the new Canon 70D’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF. I would pick that the D400 would be much more advanced for video than the D7100, at least on a par with the D400 or D800, with the ability to change the aperture during filming, which the D7000/7100 and D600 lack.

              We have only a few more weeks to find out. I’m starting to get excited!

  75. 237
    ) Jack

    I have run out of time waiting for Nikon D400 if it will ever show up. I went and tested D600, D7100 the main reason being is that I am convinced that if we see a D400 it will have the same sensor and focus system as the D7100. They will put it in a D300s body with better buffer. And tested the D800. Outcome, I cannot live with the D7100 and D600 bodies. However I can live with the D600 sensor and overall performance. The focus system is a joke but the sensor output is stunning. So I bought a D800. I have to live with a slower shooting speed, massive files, and up my game on shooting discipline. But this is an amazing camera. I will have to be more selective picking and composing shots, better support and use of support, to ensure optimum use of the sensor. But I view all these as positives that force me to think and act differently about what I do. I will now start to optimize my investment in good lenses. With the D800 I can shoot in FX, 1.2 and DX mode or if need be crop. The high ISO performance will be much better than the D400. If it ever shows it’s face..

    • 238
      ) Graham Blaikie

      While it *might* have the same sensor, I rather doubt that it will. I don’t think Nikon will use an existing sensor in such an important new camera as the D400. It times past when they have duplicated a sensor in another camera it was in a cheaper version – the sensor from the D3 in the D700 – the sensor from the D300S in the D90. I don’t think they will use an existing sensor in what will be the DX flagship camera. At least it will be a revised version, but more likely a new sensor altogether, especially if their rumoured advanced version of the 51-point AF system appears which may utilise pixels on the sensor in similar fashion to the Canon 70D’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF.

      As I have said before, it is a case of horses for courses – no one camera can do it all. Ideally, I would like to have a good FX camera as well as a top DX camera. The D600 appeals to me BUT I agree with you about the AF system on that camera, which was fine on the D7000 but inadequate for the D600, IMO. I will wait to see if they come a D600S version with the 51-point AF system, even if it is the current system, not the new advanced version.

      As Toshiba has announced two UHS-II SD cards with 240MB/s write speed, I would guess that the D400 will be UHS-II compatible, and, I hope, if they do come out with a D600S, that will be compatible too, with slightly improved frame rate.

      • 239
        ) Vitaliy

        Graham, you are right that in the past cheaper cameras inherited the sensor from a more expensive one. On the other hand there are couple details.
        1. D90 inherited the sensor from D300. D300s appeared after D90 and inherited the video from D90. So, in the past some features appeared in the cheaper cameras first.
        2. Presently, the processor productivity seams to be a limiting factor not the sensor. The D400 will have just that.

        • 240
          ) Larry L

          I had 3 D90′s that all had issues so I traided in the last one and went with the D300s for the robustness, but grudgingly, since the D90 was about the same in photo quality if not slightly better on the spec sheets. The D7000 came out a month later but I had jobs to do “now” at the time and could not wait… So I really wondered at almost 2X the price, why it was not better in dynamic range, bit depth also with having more pixels and ISO performance…So if the D400 is only a more robust D7100 and the ISO performance is about the same regardless of a better buffer I might just keep saving for the D800E or keep waiting yet I really can use another “something” , now.

          To me Nikon has no problem putting very good sensors in cheap bodies since the masses are their bread and butter.

          I hope I am wrong about this…

          There has been a lot of great comments here, thanks guys.

          A couple that stands out to me is
          Pedros #182
          and Chris Weller’s #194 2 – “Those who argue that higher end camera’s like a D400, D4, D800 aren’t as important as consumer and prosumer camera’s becuase the prosumer camera’s sell 5-10x the units and are more profitable are missing and important point. BRAND. These high end pro camera’s provide massive, PASSIVE profit to Nikon. Joe McNally would be shooting Canon or Sony if all Nikon offered was a D3200 or a D5200. Dave Black, Scott Kelby, Bill Frakes etc…people (in part) buy consumer Nikon Camera’s because they see their idols shooting Nikon. If these camera’s didn’t exist every sporting event would be filled with white lenses as would every safari and bird park.”
          Thats a great point that got me thinking and worth repeating.

  76. 241
    ) Marcin

    Any feedback on recent NR comments? people on all camera forums loosing hope

    NR: “I already mentioned that I expect three new Nikon DSLR cameras by the end of the year (the actual announcement could be in the first week of 2014 for the CES show): one full frame camera (probably D4x), one entry level DX model (probably D1000). The third camera is still not clear: it could be anything from a mirrorless to a SLT based or a retro design.”

    NR: “I am not pessimistic, I am basing my opinion on the info I receive. Unless a miracle happens, there will be no D400 this year.”

    NR:” For a long time I was told that the D7100 will be the top of the line DX camera. It seems that what I reported an year ago is still true.”

    NR:”I was told that the D7100 will be the top of the DX line months before the camera was released. After it came out, many realized that the buffer is not fast enough and we all assumed that there will be a better DX camera coming soon. I have not heard anything reliable since that such camera exists.”

    • 242
      ) Chris Weller

      I saw this too. As I indicated in previous posts, it seems that many people consider it a lock that we are going to see a d400 announcement in September. I think the earliest we could see one would be jan/Feb of 2014. I also think equal odds that it’s Aug/Sept of 2014 or never. I think they need Expeed 4 and I don’t think it’s ready yet.

      They could always make a D7200 with a larger buffer and a 1 fps increase and call it a day. Nikon might believe that “pro’s” don’t use DX cameras and therefor don’t need a pro body. That would be a real shame, though. I guess if they did give us a larger buffer and a bit more speed, I would settle for that, but not happily.

      • 243
        ) Greg Heller

        Chris – I think you hit the point right here — Nikon might believe that “pro’s” don’t use DX cameras and therefor don’t need a pro body, only add to it this — Nikon might believe that “pro’s” ‘IN JAPAN’ don’t use DX cameras and therefore don’t need a pro body. I’m starting to believe that Nikon only uses the Japanese market for their product/customer research. A few weeks ago one of their exec’s said they were shocked that the Nikon 1 hasn’t done well in the US and Europe when it is such a hit with Japanese women, That statement really bothered me first it told me they don’t do a very good job of market research and apparently they only use the North American and European divisions as distribution channels. You never hear from Nikon USA in advertising or executives from Nikon USA being quoted in trade publications. I think the writing is on the wall as far as the D400. I’m going to wait maybe another 6-8 months but I’m going to take a good hard look at Pentax when their long awaited full frame comes out. At least Pentax execs tell you what there long range plans are. I’ve been sitting on a wad of money I could have been spending on lenses and accessories instead of playing Nikon’s waiting game on the D400. I’m only loyal to a point.

        • Greg, great points. I would like to add that if Nikon is accepting any feedback from any Americans, it will be from those pros that most likely use FX.

          • 248
            ) Greg Heller

            I used to be a marketing rep for IBM back when the PC was first announced and other historical moments in computing history. Back then IBM had customer advisory boards made from small medium and large corporations who could bring their concerns directly to the development groups. Every Tuesday at IBM was announcement day, be it hardware, software, services, discontinued items, and Statements of Direction, it is the statement of directions that I wish Nikon would implement. Canon was sort of transparent about the longevity of their continued production of the DX camera bodies a few months back, they are continuing to develop DX but eventually they see that going away; Pentax has made statements that they are continuing to work on a full frame camera because they know their customers want it. All Nikon has to do is make a statement that it understands there is a segment in the customer base that has been waiting for a D200 D300/s follow-on product – what we can tell you is that there is work on going in that area but as of yet we do not have an estimated delivery date or technical specs —— or we feel that a Professional style DX camera would/is not economically feasible and we believe that the upgrade path that brings the best return for their investment for those customers lies in the D600 or D800 camera lines. It’s really simple to implement – they haven’t revealed any corporate secrets, they told their customers what to expect in the future. The best part it makes Nikon look like they care, that they are watching out for you, it gives you info to make plans on, It’s a win-win, it gives them better customer satisfaction and makes the customer more loyal. What more could they ask for.

        • 247
          ) Larry L

          Nikon must be aware of “a” need for a DX pro build since they have sold the D300, D200, D100..
          It might be a marketing move to hold. Just what were their profits making them, would be my question?
          How long should they squeeze out the sells with the D710o, would be my next.

          Perhaps being an American, I like well built, metal, heavy, solid stuff.. and have not agreed with having plastic front and bottom part of the body as being up to par for what robust means. I have also been a product designer and can see the savings in going with more plastic. In many things using ABS, polycarbinate, glass filled plastics, they are great materials to use however I want my lens and trypod mounting faces to be metal!

      • 245
        ) Graham Blaikie

        Chris, do you have any reason to believe that Expeed 4 isn’t ready yet?

        EXPEED 3 was built on 65nm. Given current processor fabrication technology we can expect it to be somewhere between 32nm and 22nm. If the latter it could be quad-core, or if dual-core at least double the speed plus architectural refinements.

        EXPEED 3A in the Nikon 1 V2 features a world record image-processing speed of up to 850 megapixels per second. This enables 60 frames per second (15 fps with full autofocus) speed even with the new 14 megapixel image sensor. Which shows me that Nikon are halfway there with this.

        Surely Nikon have woken up to the fact that they need cameras to sell – now. They can’t afford to have nothing until next year. Nikon will be taking a risk not releasing something important in the next month or two, especially in the DX category (plus lenses, off course).

        Perhaps UHS-II SD card availability is a factor. It would make sense to include at least one of those with a new D400.

        • 246
          ) Chris Weller

          Graham,

          You bring up some compelling arguments. My opinion in based on solely on what I have read and observed over the last 3 1/2 years watching Nikon products closely. I could certainly be wrong and I hope that I am.

          Given the raw throughput and on specs quoted above it certainly seems reasonable that Nikon could produce the camera even with Expeed3A, but I don’t know enough about how those specs translate into a model like a D400. It is my understanding that expeed performs a ton of other duties as well. In fact, I think it does everything. Canon uses 3 of their top of the line processors in their 1dx, wheras Nikon puts all the processing power in just one processor.

          I have to imagine they will announce something before the end of the year, but I just have a feeling it won’t be a d400.

  77. 249
    ) Jack

    I have read all that I could find about potential D400 as well as DX vs FX. I also read Nasim’s view on DX or FX for wildlife and DX “reach” or 1.5 crop factor. From it all and the latest NR or what Nikon plan to launch this year, to me it is clear that there will not be a D400 and D7100 is it. Also that DX has reached it’s limit as far as sensor resolution is concerned. That there is no real benefit in the DX crop sensor vs FX. I saw it with my D800 that I use in FX and the different crop modes. The I rather shoot in FX and crop in post process. I would rather get a D700 or if I have the funds a D600 as second body than a DX. Yes I understand the D600 controls are different. So after all the waiting, DX is not the future.

    • 250
      ) Chris Weller

      FPS

  78. 251
    ) Ship Jumper

    If Nikon ever release a D400 it’ll be too little too late. It’ll be a flop, and not because DX is dead, but because they took too long to release it (which ironically may have killed the format). Many have simply moved on, my self included. There’s only so many times I can buy a D300s, technology has moved on and I want to buy some new gear.

    They tried to force a change to FX, but if I go FX I have to buy a new body and all new lenses. That essentially makes me a new customer with no real ties to any one manufacturer. So now I can easily change brands.

    My gear is on ebay. Now I will weigh up the pros and cons of the offerings from ALL the manufacturers. It might be Nikon, then again it might not. And what are the chances in 5 years time Nikon will stop supporting FX in favour of MX? Do I want to take the risk?

    • 252
      ) Larry L

      I am not sure how a long wait can kill a format?

      DX has it’s nitch including a pro build body, but is it profitable for Nikon?

      I recently purchased a used EC 2 year old 17-55 F2.8 Nikon lens since my 16 – 85 was showing some softness on the left side after 20k of shots, for about $800, also a 11-16 F2.8 ultra wide Tokina new for $540. Both are very well made, pro quality, & sharp. A new FX equivalent pair, say 16-35 & a like new 24 -70 would have been $1500 more, I hate to have $6000 of “camera” bouncing around my neck for the small every day, no need to for large prints, shooting. I have a 48″ wide printer and printed up to 12′ x 16′ billboards with DX, (D300s) with good results from a normal viewing distance. So for me, 90% of my shooting I can live with my D300s. Better ISO performance would be my main “need” and after going through a D70, 3 D90′s, all with issues, a pro build body and better resolution is what I would like also. So do I look for a low shutter count D800/ D800E in the $2300 range or buy a new D400 if it comes out? I have an F1.4 50, micro 60, and a F2.8 80-200, all FX…I have another wedding to do in a couple weeks and my D70 that does not read cards, well is a poor backup.

      What to do, what to do?

      • 253
        ) Vitaliy

        Larry, if you are happy with D300s with the exception of low-light consider getting a used D700.
        The low-light performance is superb. Plus, you will get the same controls you are used to in an awesome professional body. Depending on how much patience you have, you can get a good copy in the range $1,300-$1,600.

        I recently bought D7100 and a used D700. I prefer D700 for low-light work by far.

        On the other hand, if you are choosing between a used D800(e) or a new to come D400 I would go with D800.
        - For one, nobody really knows when D400 will come out.
        - With high probability it will have the same sensor as D7100. And for the weddings and low-light D800 is much better than D7100 sensor.

        • 254
          ) Larry L

          The D700 is a great camera, my Nikon grip for my D300s also would fit it too. For weddings alone, that would be my choice for the money. Also no video, keeping it simpler, is a plus for me.

          More to think about…

  79. 255
    ) Graham Blaikie

    Patience people! The firm rumours around the Net was that it will be announced most likely in September. It is almost September. Give it four more weeks and we shall see.

    Lets see how intelligent the decision makers at Nikon are. Surely they can see there is a glaring gap in their line-up. We are all well aware of it, so they surely should be.

    As a D90 user I am becoming more aware of the limitations of an ageing sensor. I have done some great stuff with it but would really welcome an upgrade to a D7100 but I would wait for the D400, given it is expected to be announced in the near future, with all the enhancements we have dreamed about. I would hope that it could improve on the D5200 for noise and dynamic range, improve on the D7100 on frame rate (buffer size), more advanced metering, more advanced AF, improved video.

    Plus a few good lenses, perhaps an 16-70 f4, 50-200 f2.8, all constant aperture of course.

  80. 256
    ) Chris Weller

    I doubt it will ever happen, but I want a 400 f/4 or a 500 F/4 – DX prime telephoto – DO optics would be sweet too. Imagine a D400 with a 5 lb 500 mm f/4 lens. Add the 1.4 converter. It’s 700mm. Add crop factor 1050mm in a camera lens combo that is 7.5 lbs.

    I would like to see a whole line of F 2.0 DX zooms – Sigma just did a 17-35 1.8 – Give us a 18-55 2.0 and a 24-85 2.0 and a 50-150 2.0 – Make DX relevant again!

  81. 257
    ) Chris Weller

    This just in from NIKON rumors

    Rumor: Nikon preparing to announce new D5300 and D610 DSLR cameras

    I really think I’m going to be right. No D400 this year. This is exactly what I expected. A d5300 and D610 that know one cares about, but will help them sell “Brand new models” this Christmas.

    • 259
      ) Eric

      D5200 hasn’t even been out a year, and they refresh the bottom of the barrel product first so if they do release a low class DX it will be something new and small like canons D100 or it will be a D3200 refresh. NOT A D5300. Also there is no way they they would call a D600 refresh a D610. They might call it a D600s or D600x; but either camera is unlikely in my opinion.

      • 260
        ) Vitaliy

        Nikon’s naming convention is still not very clear to me. It seams that they might have changed it with the introduction of 3xxx, 5xxx and 7xxx series of DSLRs. There the new generation gets +100 to the name. It would certainly make sense to do something similar with D6xx camera.
        The question is whether the convention applies only to the consumer cameras or to the pro DSLRs as well.

        Also, the division into XXXX and XXX cameras is not completely clear. At first it seams that this is a division between the consumer and the pro (bodies). But the D600 is a strange beast. It has a full frame, which justifies putting it in the pro series. On the other hand it has the build and the controls similar to the D7xxx. Was it a mistake calling it D600 vs D6000? Can someone give a clear definition of what makes the camera a pro (XXX) vs. consumer(XXXX)?

        • 261
          ) Eric

          Nikon’s upper crust, if you will, are given the title Dxxx even in the case of the DX model: the D300 as it is (was) considered a pro camera. With the exception of the D4 and D3(x)(s) which are Nikon’s flagship cameras. The consumer line is Dxxxx such as in the D3200/D5200/D7100. The old D90 line has died out so we won’t mention those. If there is a refresh of the D300(s), it will most likely be called a D400 even though it will be DX APSC. There has never been a Dxxx that only went up by 10 digits (I.e. D600 to D610) so if they do decide to do that, it would be the first time. I’m still rooting for a D400 but if it doesn’t come out this September or January 2014, then it’s not coming and it’s time to give up.

        • 262
          ) Greg

          I think part of what makes them Pro cameras was the build – all magnesium body along with the fastest/largest specifications 8-9 fps, 9 shot bracketing, etc. Should the D300/s follow-on appear I believe it will still be given a DX00 name. The D610 I don’t believe is meant to be anything than a show to the public that we have indeed fixed the sensor spot problem and we are giving it a new name so you can be sure that you will not get a defective D600. The SB-900 flash was introduced with a overheating problem, the flash was bad mouthed all over the internet like the D600 so Nikon introduced the SB-910 and with that model change the overheating problem was finally laid to rest. I think the X10 numbering is so they don’t have to screw up a model number progression that they have already put in place for future products.

          • 263
            ) Graham Blaikie

            The reason why I think the D610 will be more than the D600 with the oil spot problem fixed is culture. It would mean admitting to problems they have avoided doing so. So I think we could expect a few improvements, especially to those areas most heavily criticized on the D600, apart from the oil spot issue, namely the DX-sized AF and the LiveView aperture problem. When they came out with the SB910 flash they also improved the AF illuminator and increased battery usage efficiency, replaced the gel color-correction filters with hard plastic filters, some interface changes, on top of fixing the heating problem.

  82. 258
    ) Graham Blaikie

    Glass half empty?

    Very early days for these rumours. Would adding Wifi and GPS to the D5300 really be what target buyers want? An improved D610 could be a better prospect, but they would have to do more than fix the oil spot issue to deserve a number upgrade. Being able to change aperture in LiveView / video mode would be a definite plus and adding a proper 51-point AF system in place of the DX-sized system from the D7000 would greatly increase the appeal of this camera.

    Given that adding WiFi and GPS to the D5300 wouldn’t take much development, neither would adding the 51-point AF and adjustable LiveView aperture, which Nikon have apparently been working on, to the D610, which would be necessary to repair the damaged reputation (and sales) of the D600, I think there is still room for continued development of the D400.

  83. 264
    ) Frank Jr.

    Just Curious, how much are you guys willing to spend on a D400?
    Like many of you, I have spent a small fortune (over time) buying DX lenses, and that is the only compelling reason for me to keep a DX camera. While owning a D7000, I will not spend my money on a D7100. A D4oo, maybe…. Depends on performance and price. Has Nikon been thinking most D300(s) owners that have been waiting on a D400 would just purchase the D7100 and forget the D400? I have grown tired of waiting on a D400. I might just forget DX altogether and splurge on a D800(e). Maybe that’s what Nikon wants us all to do…………………………..

    As a foot note,
    I recently purchased a very good, slightly used D700 and I love it, most of all the larger viewfinder.

    • 265
      ) Vitaliy

      Assuming D300-like body and all the discussed features, I would expect the price difference between D400 and D7100 to be sort of like D300 vs D90 used to be: something in the range $1,600-$1,800. For marketing purposes it should be slightly under D600 price.

  84. 266
    ) Ship Jumper

    I hear you. I own the 11-16 tokina, awsome lens, but is for sale. Nikon aren’t making high quality DX glass anymore, the format appears to be being religated to the point and shoot brigade.

    I just bought the 70-200 f2.8 and a D800 (and grip) which is exactly what Nikon wanted me to do, and I hated doing it for that reason. Thats just over $5k. Add the 24-70 and 14-24 (to replace the Tokina) and I’m looking at another $3.5k.

    A D400 would have been better, but with out lens support, what else is there?

    • 267
      ) Vitaliy

      LOL!
      So you jumped ships from one Nikon to another :-)

      Try to see the bright side. You were probably ready for a full frame and now you have one of the best cameras on the market. Also, in terms of low-light performance DX will continue lagging behind FX. So if you waited for D400 you would still feel that you are limited by the camera’s performance.
      So in the end you made a great choice and I am sure you will be very happy with it long-term.
      I am very interested to hear your impression of the combo you got.

      • 268
        ) Ship Jumper

        Sad huh? They still got me. Damn you Nikon!

        It’s overkill for what I shoot, but I’m looking forward to trying FX.

  85. 269
    ) Larry L

    I have been using my new/used Nikon 17-55 a lot, with my D300s, and wow, what a fantastic high perfomance pro lens, much better than my old 16-85 in focusing, speed and it’s very sharp.

    So at one time Nikon was thinking “Pro DX”.

    Let face it, if you do not have to shoot at high ISO or do not need the ultimate resolution of a D800, the smaller DX is great choice, and the 17-55 is a bit smaller, less cost, than the Nikon 24-70 along with say the 11-16 Tokina, I have, to an FX equvalent ultra wide.

    I have not seen however a Pro DX zoom down scale to the F2.8 70-200, like say F2.8 50-150. So there has been some reluctance in the past on to just how far to go in DX as far as pro level performance goes. Perhaps stopping at the D7100, a plastic front and base body is the new limit?

    As I am writing this perhaps Nikon feels the DX line is mostly the consumer or pro needing a cheaper backup or more reach? The pro’s I know work in FX even if they are not needing the above mentioned. So why have a dedicated DX pro line?

    • 270
      ) Graham Blaikie

      I am also hoping there are some new DX Pro quality lenses soon, perhaps announced with the D400. As it is, there is the new 18-140 which has rubber sealing and metal mount improving on the non-sealed plastic mount of the 18-105. I saw a rumour of a possible refresh of the 16-85 and perhaps the 17-55 will get VR. But many users of the D7100 and D400 would use FX lenses anyway. I am using a lowly D90 with 18-55 and 55-200 kit lenses, which have produced excellent results, but I also have a 50mm f1.8D and a 70-200 f2.8G VR with TC17E-II teleconverter. This pro zoom produces excellent results on the DX camera, at any aperture at any focal length, with and without the converter. It is said this zoom is a bit soft in the corners at maximum aperture at 200mm (though someone with a D700 and that lens said he has never noticed it) but this is cropped off on DX so you are using the best part of the lens. But I would like to see something like a 16-85 f4 or 16-70 f2.8 paired with something like a 70-300 f4, all constant aperture zooms for DX. Plus a few primes like 18mm f2, 40mm f1.4, 70mm f2, 120mm f2.8, etc.

      • 273
        ) Larry L

        I have a “new” Nikon 80-200 that works great on my d300 but there is no 2x for it from Nikon. My Tamron MC7 is low on contrast and I get better results just cropping. I wish I had a 70 -200 not for the VR but for the 2x adapter. After using the 17-55, I am spoiled by the fast acourate focus even in poor lighting conditions, great contrast and sharpness. The no VR and less reach is much less of the need I thought I needed, after using this lens. It is big and heavy all metal with weather seals throughout but I can steady it better. I am just amazed by this lens and wish I had it years ago. I was alway judging lenses by their specs and a 17-55 F2.8 on paper at $1400 new, ($800 used) EC, and it was not an impressive buy to me until I had to replace my 16-85 and actually bought it since I was tired of having consumer grade stuff breaking with no abuse. (I had went through 3 D90′s and a D70s, & 2 tamron lens that were junk including a “Promaster” tamron F2.8 17-55 that was falling apart at the filter area.

        Nikon to save money on larger glass, has pushed VR as perhaps a replacement to larger apertures on the consumer lines, and added it to the pro line as the now “needed” feature with a huge cost factor.
        So we will have to wait to see just where DX is going in Nikon’s marketing plans.

  86. You know what would just be amazing? If Nikon came out with 2 new cameras for us called the D4S(X) and the D400. These cameras would be almost exactly the same. Complete pro body, all the same layout design, same autofocus system (51 is good but maybe some more cross types), 24mp sensor, amazing fps (10+), same pro settings. The only difference would be that the D4s(x) would be full frame and because of this: heavier/more expensive. Butttt I feel like DX is dying out, and I think camera manufacturing companies think this too and are phasing out APSc sensors. If we do see a D400, I’m sure it will be great but it will never live up to a full frame counterpart.

  87. Well…We’re not almost in October and all rumors about a D400 are gone once again.
    Maybe in 2014.
    I guess I’ll have to do exactly what they want us to do and move to a FX camera… :(

  88. 275
    ) Jakes

    If you look at the Rumors out it looks like Nikon has run out of time on the D400. A waterproof camera, feeble update on D5200 an error correction on the D600 and D4x. To move from DX to FX is a big investment, they have nothing in the market that serves the wildlife, bird and sports photographer other than the D4. Their lens updates are a joke. Again this group needs an update to the 300mm f4 ?? Like the 80-400 upgrade it will be so expensive that the lower budget photographer will not spend the money and migrate to Canon where the 300f4 with VR cost less than the current Nikon 300 f4, the 100-400 old canon wil be replaced in 2014 at 50% of the Nikon 80-400. So I also sit and wait for the D400. Fact is the technology to build the D400 lack 1 major piece, the processors ability to clear the buffer of big 24mp files fast enough. The main reason why the D4 and Canon 1Dx sit on 16 and 18 mp. And Nikon will not do a D400 with a lower mp sensor than 24. Also the reason why canon 7D upgrade is pending. Reality is , for now, high mp Camera’s force you to shoot slower with less buffer. To shoot faster and have more buffer I need to shoot my D800 in DX and the same with the D7100. Smaller files faster speed and more buffer. So the question is what to do? I cannot afford a D4 so I bought the D800 and now I adjusted my photography to optimize the camera, cannot shoot long and fast burst like I did with D3. Replace the D300 with D7000 or D7100 and do the same???

    • 276
      ) Graham Blaikie

      For most, going to FX won’t be happening. The cheapest FX camera being the D600, soon to be replace by the apparently identical D610, along with its woefully small DX AF system which is the single most criticised aspect of the D600 (apart from the oil spot and dust problem). This DX AF system is enough to deter many, including me. Anything above that is just too expensive.

      Remember, Nikon are supposedly working on EXPEED 4, which should help with higher data rates and additional processing.

      I will quote from one of my posts in another forum:

      “In this Sept 9 article: http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/sr4-the-a7-ilce-7-to-be-announced-soon-too/ it appears that Sony are soon to announce a new A7 with 32MP APS-C Exmor sensor.

      This makes a 32MP D400 a possibility. It does raise the possibility of a D4oo that utilises pixel-binning (switchable for high ISOs). Pixel-binning would result in 8MP images with noise performance rivalling or exceeding the D3S.

      Combine that with Nikon’s patent application for switchable AA filter – http://nikonrumors.com/2013/08/27/nikons-patent-for-electrically-controlled-optical-low-pass-filter.aspx/ – 32MP switched off – 8MP switched on.

      EXPEED 4 would be needed for 32MP high frame rates and may be needed for pixel-binning too.” But it wouldn’t be needed for high 8MP frame rates. They could keep to EXPEED 3a.

      I wouldn’t mind a delay if they came out with something like this.

      • 278
        ) Larry L

        Well it’s into October, rumers are called rumers for a reason…
        So we have a DX line that really does not have from what I can see, lenses to optimise a fit with a 24 MP sensor. My old 16-85 perhaps stopped down, my expesive 17-55 for sure. You mention a 32MP DX, that is a real push out beyond the reach of most all lenses I would think. Better ISO than the 7100 would be a game changer for me keeping a 20+ MP. I read the new review for the Cannon that is matched up with the D7100. This camera has the same 22.5 bit color depth as my old D300s, if the review was right. It was ranked however as high or better because of a new focusing system for video and built in internet capabilities. So the market reach seems to be more consumer orentated for the now top of the line cropped sensor cameras and I really wonder if they have dropped the notion of a pro body DX.

  89. 277
    ) Mark

    The more I think about it and the longer that Nikon takes to put out a D400 (or not), the more I become interested in the Sony NEX or the newer 4/3 cameras and putting my money in that direction. I am sure Sony will come out with a NEX 7 update that will be a very interesting option.

    And the size difference in what I have to carry with me is also appealing.

  90. 279
    ) Chris Weller

    OMG – The D400 is HERE!…only it’s called the Pentax K-3.

    I’m going to look hard at this camera and the prime lenses in the 300 – 500 range. This might be the direction I go. Nikon is disappointing me more and more with every passing day. Announcing meaningless new stuff and ignoring the wildlife/sports shooter.

    I might end up with either this K-3 or a Canon 7d Mark II (if that ever arrives) and the 400 f.4 DO. I think the chance we will ever see a D400 is only about 50% (in my opinion). If it does come, I expect it in early February 2014. If we don’t see it then, I think chances drop to 25%….then to 0% if we don’t see it by Sept of 2014. I think they will have lost a large part of their customer base to other companies by then though. Hell even M 4/3 selections will be a viable option for this niche by then. They are only 1 generation away from competing in this space (in my opinion).

  91. 280
    ) Brent

    The D5300 which has the new EXPEED4 ASIC sets us up nicely for the D400. I’m saving up!

  92. 281
    ) Claudio

    Nasim, are you still convinced of the reality of a new D400? I start to doubt it …

  93. 286
    ) shrey

    Nasim, I have a D5100 with 18-105mmf4-5.6 and 50mm f2.8. I have been trying to develop photography for some time now. I want to upgrade my camera and was planning to buy a D7100. I do lot of landscape and travel photography. However , I also want to do wildlife. Considering my D5100 is just a year old. Do you suggest to wait for a better camera ? or you think D7100 is a nice option. My budger is about 1500$. Please suggest. thanks

  94. 287
    ) Mandy

    Saying a D400 is coming is like me saying itll be cold here in Miami…..Eventually itll happen, so itll be easy to say I told you so……..

  95. 288
    ) Wendy

    March 2014 and still no D400. LOL! There will be a 7200 first!

  96. 289
    ) Nycko

    Hello,

    Any fresh news about D400???

    thanks,
    nycko

  97. 290
    ) Lanthus

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