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Nikon announces the new D300 DX-format digital SLR

Nikon announces the new DX-format digital SLR, Nikon D300. The D300 features a new 12.3 effective megapixel DX-format CMOS image sensor. The CMOS sensor's integrated A/D converter features the ability to select between 12-bit and 14-bit conversion, making it possible to shoot using high-quality 14-bit NEF (RAW) format. Furthermore, the D300 is capable of shooting at a rapid 6 fps, and as fast as 8 fps when using the Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10, in continuous bursts of up to 100 shots at full 12.3 megapixel resolution...

PRESS SUMMARY

All about the new Dikon D300 digital SLRRemarkable response, handling efficiency and image quality masterfully blended to deliver the ultimate in Nikon DX-format D-SLR camera performance

Nikon Corporation is pleased to announce the introduction of the new DX-format digital SLR, Nikon D300. Combining innovative Nikon technologies with advanced new features and precision engineering, the D300 delivers the ultimate blend of DX-format performance.

The sheer imaging power of a new 12.3 effective-megapixel DX Format CMOS image sensor with integrated A/D converter; the precision processing and astounding speed of Nikon's original EXPEED digital image processing concept; the unprecedented focusing speed and precision of a new 51-point AF system; Nikon's innovative new Scene Recognition System for optimal autofocus, auto exposure and auto white balance performance; the composition and focusing ease of a large new pentaprism viewfinder that provides full 100% frame coverage; an expansive 920,000-dot, high-resolution 3-inch LCD monitor with wide viewing angle; near-instant power-up and immediate response; all with the advantages of Nikon DX-format agility and system expandability. Meet the new generation digital SLR camera that blends all these advanced features into one fine package – the Nikon D300.

Major Features

New DX-format CMOS image sensor with 12.3 effective megapixels
The D300 features a new 12.3 effective megapixel DX-format CMOS image sensor. It not only produces fine details with sharp resolution, but also provides a broad light sensitivity range of ISO 200 to ISO 3200, (plus LO 1 for IS0 100 equivalent and HI 1 for IS0 6400 equivalent settings; Auto ISO control is also available). The CMOS sensor's integrated A/D converter features the ability to select between 12-bit and 14-bit conversion, making it possible to shoot using high-quality 14-bit NEF (RAW) format. All internal processing is handled in full 16-bit color, color, benefiting from a fine balance between performance with outstanding speed that defies this level of precision and natural-looking images that benefit from faithful color and tone reproduction. Lateral chromatic aberration is also reduced.
EXPEED – Nikon's image processing concept embodied
As Nikon's new digital image-processing concept – featuring the core ideas of our image creation and processing – EXPEED incorporates the optimized knowhow and technologies we have accumulated throughout our long history while receiving users' requirements. It realizes diversified functions to ensure high picture quality and high-speed image processing.
* For details, see “Nikon's original digital image-processing concept EXPEED” on our News Release in Aug. 2007.

High-speed continuous shooting
The D300 is capable of shooting at a rapid 6 fps*1, and as fast as 8 fps*2 when using the Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10, in continuous bursts of up to 100 shots*3 at full 12.3 megapixel resolution. The Nikon D300 is also the first digital SLR to support next-generation high-speed card UDMA, which enables high speed recording.
*1 When using one EN-EL3e battery installed in the camera
*2 When using batteries other than Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL3e
*3 NORMAL – LARGE image setting, using a SanDisk Extreme IV CompactFlash 1GB card

Immediate response
Near-instant power-up within 0.13 seconds, a shutter release time lag of a mere 0.045 seconds*, and viewfinder blackout time of approximately 0.1 seconds contribute to optimized all-around performance that lets photographers respond to any sudden shutter opportunities.
* When shooting in JPEG, TIFF, or 12-bit NEF (RAW) formats

Scene Recognition System
By improving the 1,005-pixel RGB sensor, which was first incorporated in the Nikon F5, information from the sensor can be utilized for auto exposure, auto white balance and autofocus. For example, 3D tracking in AF realized by using the Scene Recognition System tracks subject position, and automatically shifts AF points to be used according to the subject's movement within the frame. This system also contributes to improved accuracy of auto exposure and auto white balance.
* For details, see “Scene Recognition System for more accurate autofocus, auto exposure and auto white balance” on our News Release in Aug. 2007.

AF system employing high-density 51-point AF
Multi-CAM 3500DX autofocus sensor module featuring 51 AF points is incorporated. 15 cross-type sensors located in the center provide subject detection capability with lens apertures as small as f/5.6. 51 AF points can be utilized in various focus area modes selected according to subject condition. In many aspects, the functions of AF points are linked with the Scene Recognition System to offer superior subject detection and focus tracking performance. A single AF point can be selected from 51 or 11 focus points. Dynamic AF mode enables appropriate focusing by detecting subjects with a zone containing many AF points located densely. In this mode, the number of AF areas, including user selected AF points and backup points, can be selected from either 9, 21 or 51. In addition, newly employed “3D tracking” mode shifts the focus point automatically to respond to the subject's movements. Auto-area AF mode gives greater priority to the subject's position in selecting AF points.

Picture Control System
Picture Control System is a new function to enable selection and adjustment to create pictures easily according to skills of users from novices to professionals. When settings are the same, even with different cameras, you can get the same picture tone. Picture Control System offers four fundamental setting options – Standard, Neutral, Vivid and Monochrome – enabling image parameters (sharpening, tone compensation, brightness, tone and saturation) to be easily adjusted and customized.
* For details, see “Picture Control System's image optimization functions enable easy adjustments” on our News Release in Aug. 2007.

Two Liveview modes available
Liveview function enables shooting while confirming subjects in the LCD monitor.
In Handheld mode, which allows recomposing of the frame prior to actual shooting, ordinary TTL phase-difference AF using all 51 AF points including 15 cross-type points is activated.
Tripod mode is designed for precise focus accuracy with still subjects and tripod stabilization. In this mode, focal-plane contrast AF on a desired point within a specific area is possible. Remote view, focusing and shooting are also made possible on a PC (wired or wirelessly).

Large, bright viewfinder that achieves 100% frame coverage
TThe D300's new eye-level pentaprism viewfinder aids composition and adds assurance to focus operations by providing full 100% frame coverage and large 0.94x magnification, as well as an eyepoint of 19.5 mm (at -1.0 m-1) and built-in diopter adjustment range of -2 to +1 m-1.

Durability that will go the distance
Testing to 150,000 cycles stands as firm testament to the durability of the new shutter unit for the D300. Its magnesium alloy chassis combines light weight with solid durability, while the body features an enhanced sealing system that helps protect against moisture and dust.

Active D-Lighting
D-Lighting incorporated in the conventional digital SLRs enables editing after the image is taken. In addition to the D-Lighting, newly developed Active D-Lighting is employed in the Nikon D300.
Active D-Lighting lets users choose the intensity from among “High”, “Normal”, “Low” or “Unchanged” prior to shooting. The conventional method of simply expanding dynamic range is not employed in compensation. Instead, localized tone control technology is utilized to prevent images from looking flat with low contrast. As a result, “lost highlights” and “lost shadows” are well compensated while maintaining proper contrast.

Self-cleaning Sensor Unit for efficient dust reduction
The D300 is the first Nikon D-SLR camera to employ a Self-cleaning Sensor Unit. Four different resonance frequencies vibrate the optical low pass filter in front of the image sensor to shake particles free and reduce the presence of dust.

Exclusive Wireless Transmitter WT-4 (optional)
The WT-4 supports wired LAN (10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX) and wireless LAN (IEEE 802.11b/g, 11a), and incorporates thumbnail mode as a new function.
It realizes wireless connection of cameras with a PC, enabling thumbnail display of images taken with up to five of them and downloading of images selected. Also, by using Camera Control Pro 2 (optional), wireless remote view/control shooting is made possible with the D300's Liveview function.
* For details, see “WT-4 / Camera Control Pro 2 Software” on our News Release in Aug. 2007.

Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10 (optional)
The optional new Multi-Power Battery Pack MB-D10 supports 3 types of batteries and features sequential power supply with auto-switching to the battery installed inside the camera body. When attached, it also enables high-speed continuous shooting at a rate of 8 fps*1 for up to 100 consecutive shots*2.

*1 When using batteries other than the Rechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL3e
*2 NORMAL – LARGE image setting, using a SanDisk Extreme IV CompactFlash 1GB card

Additional information: All about the new Dikon D300 digital SLR
August 23, 2007
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