Nikon D3 Review

Review Date: February 18th 2008
Author: Gavin Stoker

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Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6


Type of Camera
Single-lens reflex digital camera with interchangeable lenses

Effective Pixels
12.1 million

Image Sensor
CMOS sensor, 36.0 x 23.9 mm; total pixels: 12.87 million; Nikon FX format

ISO Sensitivity
ISO 200 to 6,400 in steps of 1/3, 1/2, or 1 EV; sensitivity decreases approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, or 1 (ISO 100 equivalent) EV below ISO 200, and increases approx. 0.3, 0.5, 0.7, 1 (ISO 12,800 equivalent), or 2 (ISO 25,600 equivalent) EV over ISO 6,400

Storage Media
CompactFlash (Type I/II, compliant with UDMA); Microdrives

File System
Compliant with DCF 2.0, DPOF and Exif 2.21

Storage System
Compressed 12/14 bit NEF (RAW, Lossless compressed): approx. 60-80%
Compressed 12/14 bit NEF (RAW, Compressed): approx. 45-60%
JPEG: JPEG-baseline-compliant; can be selected from Size priority and Optimal quality

Release Modes
1) Single-frame [S] mode,
2) Continuous low-speed [CL] mode: 1-9 frames per second*,
3) Continuous high-speed [CH] mode: 9 fps (9-11 fps with DX format)*,
4) Liveview [LV] mode,
5) Self-timer [mark] mode,
6) Mirror-up [Mup] mode
*With Continuous-servo AF, S or M exposure mode, shutter speed 1/250 s or faster; other settings are set at “Default”.

White Balance
Auto (TTL white balance with main image sensor and 1,005-pixel RGB sensor);
Seven manual modes can be preset with fine-tuning; color temperature setting;
white balance bracketing: 2 to 9 exposures in increments of 1, 2 or 3

Handheld mode: TLL phase-difference AF with 51 focus areas (15 cross-type sensors)
Tripod mode: focal-plane contrast AF on a desired point within a specific area

LCD Monitor
3-in., approx. 920,000-dot (VGA), 170-degree wide-viewing-angle, 100% frame coverage, low-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD with brightness adjustment

Playback Function
1) Full frame,
2) Thumbnail (4 or 9 segments),
3) Zoom,
4) Slide show,
5) Histogram indication,
6) Shooting data,
7) Highlight point display,
8) Auto image rotation

Video Output
NTSC or PAL; simultaneous playback from both the video output and on the LCD monitor available

HDMI Output
Supports HDMI version 1.3a; Type A connector is provided as HDMI output terminal; simultaneous playback from both the HDMI output terminal and on the LCD monitor not available

Hi-speed USB

Lens Mount
Nikon F mount with AF coupling and AF contacts

Compatible Lenses*1
1) Type G or D AF Nikkor: All functions supported
2) DX AF Nikkor: All functions supported except FX-format (36x24)/5:4 (30x24) image size
3) AF Nikkor other than type G or D*2: All functions supported except 3D Color Matrix Metering II
4) AI-P Nikkor: All functions supported except autofocus and 3D Color Matrix Metering II
5) Non-CPU AI Nikkor: Can be used in exposure modes A and M; electronic range finder can be used if maximum aperture is f/5.6 or faster; Color Matrix Metering and aperture value display supported if user provides lens data
*1. IX Nikkor lenses can not be used
*2. Excluding lenses for F3AF

Picture Angle
Equivalent to angle produced by lens focal length (1.5 times when DX format is selected)

SLR-type with fixed eye-level pentaprism; built-in diopter adjustment (-3 to +1 m-1)

18 mm (-1.0 m-1)

Focusing Screen
Type B BriteView Clear Matte VI screen

Viewfinder Frame Coverage
Approx. 100% (vertical/horizontal)

Viewfinder Magnification
Approx. 0.7x (50mm f/1.4 lens at infinity; -1.0 m-1)

Reflex Mirror
Quick-return type

Lens Aperture
Instant-return type, with depth-of-field preview button

• TTL phase detection, 51 focus points (15 cross-sensors) by Nikon Multi-CAM 3500FX autofocus module; detection range: -1 to +19 EV (ISO 100 at 20°C/68°F); AF fine adjustment possible
• Focal-plane contrast [in Liveview (Tripod) mode]

Lens Servo
1) Autofocus: Single-servo AF (S); continuous-servo AF (C); focus tracking automatically activated according to subject status,
2) Manual focus (M) with electronic rangefinder

Focus Point
Single AF point can be selected from 51 or 11 focus points

AF-Area Mode
1) Single-point AF,
2) Dynamic AF [number of AF areas: 9, 21, 51, 51 (3D-tracking)],
3) Automatic–area AF

Focus Lock
Focus can be locked by pressing AE-L/AF-L button or by pressing shutter-release button halfway (single-point AF in AF-S)

Exposure Metering System
TTL full-aperture exposure metering using 1,005-pixel RGB sensor
1) 3D Color Matrix Metering II (type G and D lenses); Color Matrix Metering II (other CPU lenses); Color Matrix Metering (non-CPU lenses if user provides lens data)
2) Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 8, 15 or 20-mm circle in center of frame, or weighting based on average of entire frame
3) Spot: Meters 4-mm circle (about 1.5% of frame) centered on selected focus area (on center focus area when non-CPU lens is used)

Metering Range
1) 0 to 20 EV (Matrix or center-weighted metering),
2) 2 to 20 EV (Spot metering) (ISO 100 equivalent, f/1.4 lens, at 20°C/68°F)

Exposure Meter Coupling
Combined CPU and AI

Exposure Modes
1) Programmed Auto (P) with flexible program,
2) Shutter-Priority Auto (S),
3) Aperture-Priority Auto (A),
4) Manual (M)

Exposure Compensation
±5 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV

Exposure Bracketing
Exposure and/or flash bracketing (2 to 9 exposures in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1 EV)

Picture Control System
Four setting options: Standard, Neutral, Vivid, Monochrome; each option can be adjusted

Exposure Lock
Exposure locked at detected value with AE-L/AF-L button

Electronically-controlled vertical-travel focal-plane shutter; 1/8,000 to 30 s in steps of 1/3, 1/2 or 1 EV; Bulb

Sync Contact
X = 1/250 s; flash synchronization at up to 1/250 s

Flash Control
1) TTL flash control with 1,005-pixel RGB sensor; i-TTL balanced fill-flash and standard i-TTL fill-flash available with SB-800, 600 or 400
2) Auto aperture (AA): Available with SB-800 and CPU lens
3) Non-TTL auto (A): Available with SB-800, 28, 27 or 22s
4) Range-priority manual (GN): Available with SB-800

Flash Sync Modes
1) Front-curtain sync (normal),
2) Slow sync,
3) Rear-curtain sync,
4) Red-eye reduction,
5) Red-eye reduction with slow sync

Accessory Shoe
Standard ISO 518 hot-shoe contact with safety lock

Sync Terminal
ISO 519 standard terminal

Creative Lighting System
With Speedlights such as SB-800, SB-600, SB-R200, supports Advanced Wireless Lighting, Auto FP High-Speed Sync, Flash Color Information Communication, modeling flash and FV lock

Electronically controlled timer with duration of 2, 3, 10 or 20 s

Depth-of-field Preview Button
When CPU lens is attached, lens aperture can be stopped down to value selected by user (A and M modes) or value selected by camera (P and S modes)

10-pin Terminal
1) GPS: NMEA 0183 (Ver. 2.01 and 3.01) interface standard supported with 9-pin D-sub cable and GPS Cable MC-35 (optional)
2) Remote control: via 10-pin terminal

Supported Languages
Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish

Power Source
One Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL4a/EL4, Quick Charger MH-22, AC Adapter EH-6 (optional)

Tripod Socket
1/4 in. (ISO 1222)

Dimensions (W x H x D)
Approx. 159.5 x 157 x 87.5 mm (6.3 x 6.2 x 3.4 in.)

Approx. 1,240 g (2.7 lb.) without battery, memory card, body cap or accessory shoe cover

Operating Environment
Temperature: 0-40°C/32-104°F, Humidity: under 85% (no condensation)

Supplied Accessories*
Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL4a, Quick Charger MH-22, USB Cable UC-E4, Audio Video Cable EG-D2, Camera Strap AN-D3, Body Cap BF-1A, Accessory Shoe Cap BS-2, Eyepiece DK-17, Battery Chamber Cover BL-4, USB Cable Clip, Software Suite CD-ROM
*Supplied accessories may differ depending on country or area

Main Optional Accessories
Wireless Transmitter WT-4, Magnifying Eyepiece DK-17M, AC Adapter EH-6, Camera Control Pro 2 Software, Image Authentication Software

Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6

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