|MELVILLE, NY, JULY 22, 2003 – Nikon (www.nikonusa.com), the world leader in photography, today introduced the new D2H™ professional digital SLR camera, designed for photojournalists and sports/action photographers. Featuring the fastest full system performance in a digital SLR camera, the D2H sets a new standard in speed and accuracy while achieving exceptional image quality. Virtually every aspect of the camera's performance has been designed from the ground up to facilitate high-speed photography under demanding conditions. The D2H is capable of continuously shooting 8 frames per second and buffers up to a staggering 40 JPEG images. It incorporates an all new 11-sensor autofocus system with 9 cross type sensors and versatile performance, a revolutionary new DX format 4.1 effective megapixel JFET imaging sensor called ‘LBCAST' designed by Nikon and Wi-Fi capabilities for 802.11b wireless transmission of images. |
The D2H boasts an extensive new feature set that is designed for extreme performance at every level. The camera is central to a complete new imaging system for photojournalism and sports/action photography that includes new Nikon Capture™ 4.0 software, new NikonView™ 6.1 software, new i-TTL™ speedlight technology, new WT-1 Wi-Fi transmitter accessory, and three exciting new lenses including the world's first extreme wide-angle AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED lens and the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G IF-ED lens, both designed exclusively for Nikon digital SLR cameras, and the world's first super-telephoto AF-S VR 200-400mm f/4G IF-ED lens with Nikon's advanced Vibration Reduction technology designed for Nikon's 35mm and Digital SLR models
“Motivated by Nikon's heritage in sports/action photography and photojournalism, the D2H is introduced to set a new standard for high-speed digital photography. Every function within the D2H system is optimized for fast, accurate and extreme performance with Total Image Quality. Using a newly developed original Nikon imaging sensor, the D2H is able to produce data-rich files that are compact enough for immediate transmission and rapid workflow, yet yield dramatically high image quality,” said Richard LoPinto, vice president of SLR camera systems, Nikon Inc. “While photographers routinely associate image quality and especially image sharpness with mega pixel count alone, engineers understand that there are a multitude of additional factors that affect sharpness and total image quality. The D2H's imaging sensor was developed together with associated support technology, to overcome nearly every aspect of image quality degradation, including false colors, noise, ‘artifacting' and ‘jaggies' to name a few. With the D2H system, Nikon is leading action oriented digital photography into a new realm where Total Image Quality takes precedence over any individual image specification. With exciting new wireless compatibly, this new digital SLR system truly sets new standards for performance and quality.” he added.
While the camera retains the familiar look and feel of Nikon's D-series digital SLR cameras, it is completely redesigned under the hood, and incorporates a host of new features and technologies that enable it to deliver sports and action shots with impeccable image quality and detail.
Image Quality That Surpasses Every Camera In Its Class
There are many factors that affect a digital camera's final image quality. These include color rendition, color accuracy, tone, contrast, sharpness, pixel count, dynamic range, white balance, exposure accuracy, noise, digital artifacts, false coloring, moiré patterns and the appearance of ‘jaggies.' The D2H achieves unparalleled image quality in its class by aggressively addressing each of these issues and utilizing new technologies to overcome them. As a result, the D2H produces highly refined digital images that have visibly noticeable superiority in image sharpness, detail, color and resolution compared to other cameras in its class.
Exclusive New Nikon 4.1 megapixel JFET Imaging Sensor LBCAST
The D2H features a new 4.1 effective megapixel (2484 X 1636) DX format JFET (Junction Field Effect Transistor) Imaging Sensor, called LBCAST (Lateral Buried Charge Accumulator and Sensing Transistor Array). The new sensor's technology and performance, as developed by Nikon meets the challenging needs of photojournalists and sports/action photographers, and provides the foundation for the D2H system's advanced performance. The new sensor is not only capable of producing high image quality, but also delivers high-speed performance. The sensor reads 2 channels of data from each pixel – while also handling brightness data in the same process to achieve maximum image reproduction speed.
Additionally, its JFET technology, combined with a host of new innovations, enables this sensor to render extremely low noise performance with extraordinary color accuracy, detail, sharpness and overall quality that is unparalleled by any other similarly sized sensor. A new ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) design significantly reduces color artifacts and ‘jaggies' on oblique lines, while helping improve overall image sharpness. Next generation signal processing algorithms improve automatic functions such as auto white balance, auto tone control and auto color correction to ensure optimal accuracy for each scene. A new color-processing engine minimizes false colors, while maintaining superior color rendition, accuracy and consistency. A high signal-to-noise ratio combined with high-level image processing offers enhanced performance at high ISO settings.
With a new sensor design, powerful algorithms and new total image quality control technologies, the D2H produces images far superior compared to other 4-mega pixel cameras. With the added convenience of producing both NEF (Nikon Electronic Format raw files) and JPEG files simultaneously, photographers will find it easier than ever to harness the full power of NEF using Capture 4.0 software.
Advanced New White Balance System
The D2H features an intelligent new white balance system that accurately measures and calculates color temperature and white balance settings for complex conditions and thereby supports the highest total image quality. It achieves this by employing Triple Sensor metering, and determines values from three different sources: a “third eye” incident meter located on the prism of the camera measures environmental light, Nikon's exclusive 1,005 pixel RGB color meter sensor continuously measures reflected light from the viewed image, and the DX image sensor measures color temperature in real-time during the actual exposure. Advanced algorithms process the perfect white balance setting for any given scene, using analysis of values from each of the three sources. The D2H's white balance system has a wide color range of 2,500K to 10,000K, and is able to detect and compensate for artificial light flicker.
For additional convenience, the D2H features five preset-memory settings that can be alphanumerically labeled in the camera so photographers can store white balance settings for venues they frequent, like stadiums, indoor courts, etc. They can even extract white balance settings from a picture taken by the camera, and using the white balance preset functions, apply it to subsequent images.
Fast, Accurate, Responsive – It's All About Timing
The D2H is the world's most responsive digital SLR camera. It has virtually no start-up lag time, and is ready to shoot the instant it is turned on. Its shutter lag time is a mere 37ms – the lowest among all digital cameras, and comparable to Nikon's legendary F5™ 35mm film SLR camera. The D2H is capable of a continuous shooting rate of up to 8 frames per second at full resolution and all file formats and ISO settings. The frame rate remains consistent when any combination of the D2H's focus points is selected, or even when older, non-CPU based Nikkor lenses are used. The D2H's enormous buffer allows photographers to shoot up to 40 continuous images in JPEG mode and 25 in NEF (RAW) mode, rendering buffer-stall virtually a non-issue.
All New Autofocus System: Nikon Multi-Cam 2000™ technology
The D2H features the new Nikon Multi-Cam 2000™ next generation autofocus system that is not only fast enough to keep up with the camera's rapid continuous frame rate, but it is remarkably accurate in detecting focus even in challenging situations, including dim lighting conditions as low as EV –1. This new autofocus system consists of 11 AF sensors, 9 of which are cross-type sensors laid out consistently with the rule of thirds for composition, and an additional two sensors placed at the horizontal ends of the frame. This ensures that the D2H has over 75% horizontal autofocus coverage – the widest cross-type sensor coverage in its class. Photographers have the option of setting preferences for AF sensor selection, including choosing each sensor individually or combining them into groups to ensure ideal coverage in diverse picture taking compositions. The D2H also features enhanced Dynamic AF and a new Group Dynamic AF detection option, as well as Focus Tracking with Lock-On™ technology to ensure razor sharp pictures.
Taking the D2H's remarkable autofocus system one step further is its capability for ‘extreme focus detection.' A typical camera can detect focus in a scene up to a certain ‘defocus' limit, beyond which the camera enters a scanning mode. During this mode, the camera's autofocus system scans through the entire focusing range of the lens before detecting a focus point. This process can waste precious time, especially when photographing high-speed action. The D2H's autofocus system can detect focus in scenes with about twice the defocus limit of other cameras, ensuring more accurate and consistent operation.
High Speed Image Transfer For Faster Workflow
Not only does the D2H process images faster, it is also equipped with high-speed image transfer options that ensure the quickest transfer from camera to workflow. The D2H has Lexar Media's™ Write Accelerated (WA) technology standard, allowing faster write-to-card speeds when used with Lexar's WA enabled
CompactFlash® cards. The D2H features Hi-Speed USB 2.0 remote connectivity as well as compatibility with Wi-Fi for image transfer over a wireless Local Area Network (LAN).
For added speed, convenience, performance and potential, the D2H features integrated Wi-Fi connectivity when used with the optional WT-1 accessory. Based on standard IEEE-802.11b technology, the WT-1 can be attached to the bottom of the D2H, and connected to the camera via its USB 2.0 port. It transmits images via a local area network to a host computer access-point using File Transfer Protocol (FTP) method, and can wirelessly transfer data over a radius of approximately 30 meters (100 feet) with a supplied one-inch antenna. An optional antenna is available for an extended range of up to 150 meters (approx. 490 feet). To ensure secure wireless data transmission, the D2H offers multiple levels of security including Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption, MacAddress, and ESS-ID. The camera and optional WT-1 accessory can be set to various transmission configurations, including the option to save images on the CompactFlash card and transmit simultaneously. All the configurations and settings for wireless transmission can be written separately in a computer text file and applied to multiple cameras by downloading the file to a CompactFlash card and loading the settings into each camera. The WT-1 draws its power supply from the D2H battery, consuming roughly 20% of its charge during normal usage. Its robust magnesium chassis construction and water resistant connectors match the camera's construction and durability.
Comfortable, Logical Design for Faster Handling
The D2H features significant improvements in user interface design that facilitate faster and easier handling of the camera. The most noticeable difference on the back of the D2H is its oversized LCD monitor that is 50% larger than previous models and centrally positioned on the camera's back. The 2.5-inch (diagonal) screen has an anti-scratch surface and displays larger, easier-to-read fonts. A new 8-way multi-selector enables diagonal movement and makes scrolling through menus and panning over images easier and faster. New larger controls and oversized buttons make operating the camera with gloves effortless. An improved vertical shutter release interface offers photographers greater control and handling while the camera automatically detects orientation and tags vertical images to be rotated in Nikon View software.
New Battery System Geared For Power, Accuracy
The D2H utilizes a new Lithium-Ion based battery system that not only powers the new technology and extreme performance in the camera very effectively, but also offers new automatic calibration and comprehensive performance monitoring features. The D2H battery meter indicates accurate battery life on a percentage scale, with 5 percent increments, while a picture meter indicates the number of images taken on a single battery charge. Additionally, the battery information screen also specifies calibration status and overall battery life in five stages, giving ample notice to photographers to replace a battery that is exhausted and is unable to hold a charge. The high-powered Li-Ion battery has a reduced memory effect, is lighter in weight and provides improved cold weather performance.
If the Picture Matters, The Camera Matters
The D2H is central to a growing system of cameras, software, lenses, speedlights and accessories that not only enhance performance, but also offer photographers potential for immense postproduction image control, faster workflow and innovative new features. Highlights of the new system include:
Capture 4.0 Software
New software that significantly extends the capabilities of the D2H and unlocks the full power of NEF (Nikon Electronic Format) files while offering a degree of NEF image control unmatched by other third-party software. Capture 4.0 also boasts unique new features including Image Dust Off™ technology that automatically eliminates the appearance of sensor dust from a series of images.
SB-800 Speedlight Featuring New i-TTL Advanced Wireless Lighting:
An entirely new generation of speedlight technology was developed to realize the full potential of the D2H. Featuring new wireless i-TTL flash control, the SB-800 offers advanced wireless control of up to 3 remote groups with any number of SB-800's in each group, providing photographers a new dimension in multiple flash photography. The SB-800 also incorporates advanced flash control including Flash Value Lock (FV-Lock), Auto FP High Speed Sync, and Flash Color Information communication, for extreme color accuracy. The SB-800 provides standard D-TTL functions when used with other D-series Nikon digital SLR cameras.
DX-Nikkor Goes Wider With Two New Wide-Angle Lenses:
Nikon defies convention by introducing two new DX-Nikkor wide-angle lenses, designed exclusively for Nikon D-series digital SLR cameras. The AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED is the world's first extreme wide-angle fisheye lens designed for a digital SLR camera, offering a groundbreaking 180º angle-of-view coverage (diagonally). Also, the new AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G IF-ED significantly expands the range of DX-Nikkor lenses, expected to become the standard lens for Nikon digital SLR camera users. By virtue of being DX-Nikkor, designed exclusively for DX-format image sensors in Nikon's digital SLR cameras, these new lenses are not only compact and light-weight, but also offer outstanding edge-to-edge sharpness and image quality. DX Nikkor lenses now cover the angles of view from 180 o to 28o50' !
World Premiere D2H Appearance
The D2H will make its first public appearance at the 9th annual IAAF World Championships in Athletics, at Stade de France, Paris starting August 23, 2003. This worldwide public appearance will be followed shortly by a series of appearances at prolific U.S. sporting events. A schedule will be announced shortly.
The Nikon D2H digital SLR camera is compatible with over 40 world-class Nikkor lenses, and now three new DX Nikkor lenses designed exclusively for Nikon's D-series digital SLR cameras. The D2H will be available in the 4th quarter of 2003. The new WT-1 wireless transmitter accessory, new SB-800 speedlight, new DX Nikkor lenses and Capture 4.0 software are scheduled for release with the D2H.