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Nikon mirrorless camera talk continues

After the DigiTimes article and the interview with Tetsuro Goto, Focus-Numerique (in English) published their own post-Photokina interview with Tôru Uematsu (Marketing Manager, Nikon Europe). After some Q&A about 3D, AF speed, megapixels count and EVF, the mirrorless camera question was inevitable:

Q: Your president, Makoto Kimura, has announced something in that sense [Mirrorless system by Nikon], didn't he? (referring to this interview with Reuters)

A: Yes, Mr Kimura has already made few comments on this subject. We already started the development of such a camera and we call it the new generation of digital cameras. [then he talks about a huge gap between the popularity of mirrorless in Japan (20% market share) versus Europe only 5 or 6%, it seems European are more conservative]. We need to sell these cameras all over the world, and to take into consideration [the situation of] the global market to decide when to launch such a product.

Not much of a news, but another Nikon executive (Michio Miwa, managing director of Nikon UK) said in a recent press conference that "of course we are interested" in a mirrorless interchangeable lens system camera. Later he added that Nikon is "basically considering all our options".

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  • camaman

    So the are “officially” working on it…
    Like anybody thought they are that blind to the market. :-)
    As all well affirmed companies they will wait and see how others do in certain market segments then copy whats hot and maybe innovate and start a price war to work in their favor.
    But man are they all slow…

    I just hope their first EVIL will be something worthwhile. Not a 2.5 crop sensor with 3 lenses and P7000/G12 toy looks. ;-)

  • Anonymous

    Can these Nikon execs just shut up?

    Also, why don’t we have 1 FX from any of the contenders in 2010? I still cannot find 1 logical explanation.

    • http://www.haftbar.de/ BurnumBurnum

      Maybe the current models are still selling good enough…

      • Anonymous

        Yes, I agree with you. The 1960 Chevy still sells well.

        • Inquirer

          Yes, and is still sold and produced by Chevy.

          Really, what is it that YOU must have a new FX this year in order to accomplish?

          • twoomy

            Break it up guys. PLENTY of photographers want and could take advantage of a high-res D700 replacement. There are also many D700 devotees who will never understand why somebody wants more.

            BUT… neither one of you is going to convince the other of your opinion, so walk away and save yourself some misery. :)

            • jk

              There is some irony in your post.

          • Anonymous

            @ Inquirer, it is perhaps hard to imagine for you but there are people who are not satisfied with the 12mp and do not want to shell out 8 grand for f***ng camera that uses the same sensor of a $2000 one.

            By the way, the sony A900 is already 2 yrs old. But I guess sony has not revised this sensor so we have to wait another year or two.

            • http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhlpedrosa/ rhlpetrus

              But the 8,000 USD one produces much better images than the 2,000 USD one and is built to last forever.

              And the “new year’s model” gadget mentality doesn’t apply to the higher level lines. And Nikon would not release a camera now w/o video, which that sensor seems uncapable of doing. Since they have to develop not just another sensor, but one that bests both D3s’ and D3x’s in terms of IQ and high ISO performance, it’s not so simple, nobody has done it yet.

            • hah

              lol canon has had the 1ds3 for longer and it is outdated as hell and still sells for a ridiculous amount. Yet people buy it so what’s the problem?

              what other FF cameras have been released? the 1D4 is a crippled 1.3 crop that doesn’t touch the D3s, and the 5DII is pretty old with an even older AF system and pretty slow fps. Yet all of those models sell well.

              nobody needs new FF cameras this year which explains why neither nikon nor canon bothered to release one:

              the only people asking for one are trolls.

            • Eric

              The A900/A850 aren’t exactly built like a D40. I’d have zero concerns amount the longevity of one of those bodies. Plus, IMO the viewfinders in them actually look better than the VF in the D3x. The D3x may be cleaner at high ISO, but shooting RAW it would be very tough to distinguish between them under ISO800…which is where a portrait/studio photographer would be using them. So a person could buy a $2000 Sony A850 + Zeiss 24-70 2.8, Zeiss 16-35mm 2.8, and an Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 all for roughly the same price as a D3x body alone. If I were in that market and didn’t have a ton of cash to blow I’d have to give that some serious thought.

            • jk

              How do we really know it is the lack of mega pixels that is the problem…. I for one have never shot with a camera like a D3x…

              The only comparision/experience I have is moving from a D70 to a D700 for example and there was a lot more than extra mp’s to factor in the difference in IQ.

              personally I think in most cases becoming a better shooter can make up for “lower” mp’s

      • http://larry-bolch.com Larry Bolch

        Exactly. FX cameras are aimed more at actual shooters than camera-buffs, and they are very good cameras. I expect that those who do the most complaining have not shot with either the contemporary DX or FX cameras but are fanbois who just want to see their chosen brand constantly come out with higher specifications than the competition. A fanboi’s sense of self-worth stems from the product he follows. A fanboi’s maturity level is forever thirteen.

        Serious enthusiasts and working shooters are not the ones clamoring for this stuff. We know what can be done with the current sensors, and we cheer when a lens is updated because it empowers us to genuinely improve our images. We know that the next flagships will be announced by mid-2011, and we also know that Nikon faces a real challenge to better what they now have. What could be better than the D3s sensor?

        • hah

          besides nikon has more FF models than any manufacturer to date. 3 instead of 2 for canon and 1 for sony and the rest. They have the best IQ high res sensor with the D3x and the best dynamic range and signal to noise ratio with the D3s. Along with the fastest FF camera with modern AF under 3K in the D700.

          The next gen FX bodies from nikon are not needed this year. Nikon is doing the right thing and perfecting them to blow everybody’s mind (and the competiotion out of the water) like the D7000 did to the D60, the D3 did to the 1D3, the D3X did to the 1Ds3, the D3s did to the 1D4. Classic Nikon. Wait for the “other” guys and then 1 up them.

          • jdsl

            “the D7000 did to the D60″

            i’m sure you mean 60D ;)

        • JC

          hmm, the D4 sensor?

          To everyone saying that theres no need for a D700 replacement right now…
          As the owner of a D700 and someone highly anticipating a replacement, a D800/900 would be extremely welcome.
          Not because the D700 doesn’t produce excellent images… but it doesn’t do video. If your answer to that is to buy a D3s, then you should look at the d3s footage. 720p Motion JPEG is a joke, especially when we’re talking about a 5k dollar body.

          Don’t get me wrong. Nikon’s current lineup is killer. It just doesn’t fulfill all of my needs and I’d rather pick up a new Nikon body then buy an entire Canon setup just to have a decent video camera.

          • nikonman

            Totally agree. Wish my D700 had video options to meet or beat the 5DmII. I use a hacked GH13 for video now, but would love to just have the option of one camera with the ISO capabilities of the D700.

          • jdsl

            i think, there will be no D4 , imho.

            the number 4 and death are both pronounced “shi” in Japanese, the connection is pretty obvious. Japanese people are superstitious, the number 4 is considered unlucky.

            for comparison, Panasonic jumped to Lumix LX5 after LX3.
            in some elevators in Japan, there is no button for the 4th floor, etc. etc.

            • Roger

              Nikon used to make F4, you know.

            • Eric

              Nikon F4, D40

            • jdsl

              F4 – Fantastic 4
              D4 – Death 4
              :)

        • jason

          totally agree ! but really looking forward to the future of nikon

          • Mock Kenwell

            Agreed that most of the people bitching here won’t end up buying a FF when it finally arrives. But I’m not one of them. I just want a FF camera that takes good video. Frankly, if the D700 had an S version, even with 12MP, I would buy it now.

            FYI, Nikon owes us no explanation why a new camera is not being released. I wouldn’t release one in this climate if I could avoid it and my current line up was selling.

            • http://www.bibliopix.se Ola Forsslund

              So would I. The missing video feature is what holds me off buying the D700.
              Now I’m looking into the D7000 instead, if the hi-iso performance is not to far from the D700, I will buy it. It’s a lot less money for Nikon…

            • Mark Astle

              As above. They released the D700 just after I bought my D300, otherwise I’d have gone full frame at that point. Now I’d like to switch, but I want video too – D700s would be just fine by me.

    • Anonymous

      Hey all, still nobody was able to come up with one believable explanation why in 2010 the 3 Bastards (Nikon, Canon, and Sony) have not delivered 1 FX and/or a real Pro camera. These are all Japanese companies.

      Look at the others, medium format 80mp, 40mp etc.

      Also, the plethora of lenses? But no cameras. What is going on here?

      • Roger

        When Canon announces the 1Ds Mark IV, are you gonna officially come out here and say you’re were wrong, and deliberately trolling ?

        • Anonymous

          Roger,

          1) I am not trolling

          2) If any of the 3 Bastards will release a new FX this year, I will come out and congratulate to that particular Bastard!

          • Ren Kockwell

            Why are any of the manufacturers required to release a FF this year? Film cameras used to run on 6-10 year renewal cycles. How whiny and spoiled have we become? They don’t owe you an answer. And it’s not like Nikon sat on it’s ass all year—look at all those kick ass lenses they released. Plus they’re clearly working on a new system, so they’re resources have to be getting stretched pretty thin. Nikon is not as big as some electronics groups.

            • Anonymous

              Ren Kockwell, in the meantime the entire Nikon FX line is still at 12mp or 8 grand with a sony sensor and in a tank’s body.

              If you have not noticed the sony 24mp sensor is over 2 yrs old. The canon 5DII is also 2 yrs old. Nikon does not have anything in that category for over 2 yrs now.

              Perhaps you are happy with your 12mp and you do not need more. People like you would deserve 1 big pixel. Just one, so you can easily sort out the dead the one.

              Personally I do not care about the new Nikon system. It will will be a plastic crap of coolpix iterations combined with wireless so you can share the crap immediately on facebook. It will not be pro grade.

            • Cough

              Is your best argument that the sensor is two years old?

              You can’t point to a better sensor, can you? So what the f does age have to do with anything?

              If that camera came out yesterday it would you be bitching?

            • Anonymous

              12mp is everything but not high resolution. The moment the 5dII came out, the D700 became obsolete for most of the landscape photogs.

              Why did I mention the 24mp sony sensor and its age. Because up to iso 800 is pretty much at par with the D3x. Now I am sure you know that you can buy 4 A850s from the price of 1 D3x.

            • Mock Kenwell

              You keep bringing Sony up as an example. You’re right. Pros are running to Sony in droves and they’re quickly garnering market share. It’s a shame nobody who shoots Nikon can make money shooting sports, studio and advertising. Those poor pros must be in the bread line.

              I’d love to know what you do that’s so crazy awesome you need files the size of Pittsburgh. I’ve used Nikon files for everything from billboards to double trucks in magazines. The quality of the files is superb. Should Nikon move on to higher MP. Yes. And they will. But no one owes your trolling ass an explanation. You want to make an impact? Switch. Or go shoot film if you want that level of resolution. If enough of you do it, the camera companies would have no choice but to respond. It’s called a free market economy. Until then, it’s your lonely, whining voice in the wilderness.

            • Anonymous

              Mock Kenwell

              Pros are not running to sony at the moment. That is because 1) sony does not have enough lenses yet and 2) they have to fix the high iso and 3) the pro line is not enough action photo oriented YET!

              Nikon does not offer variety when it comes to FX. You have 12mp or buy the sony sensor equiped D3x for 4 times the price of the A850. I have a tons of money invested in Nikon lenses and the swiching cost would be way to much. So I am pissed and say F********g Nikon.

      • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

        > nobody was able to come up with one believable explanation why in 2010 the 3 Bastards (Nikon, Canon, and Sony) have not delivered 1 FX and/or a real Pro camera.

        The explanation is reasonably simple: low market volume and high degree of difficulty.

        But let’s take this in pieces:

        * No pro model. The only pro FX model I expected in 2010 was a Canon 1DsIV. Using previous design cycle times, the 1DsIV is the only camera that would normally be expected this year. Nikon won’t have a new pro model until mid-2011. Sony is the outlier here: they really don’t have a true “pro” model in the sense of the 1D and D# series of Canon and Nikon. But they also don’t have the quiver of lenses necessary, either, and the A850/A900 did not sell as well as they thought they would.
        * No FX model. The only other FX model I expected in 2010 was a D700 followup. But since the D700 was a new model entrant, we don’t yet know the design timeline Nikon is using to replace it. It might be 3 years, it might be 4. Both those seem too long to me, but Nikon runs on their own clock.

        Note that FX sensors are very likely part of the issue. Unlike DX/APS sensors, the FX sensors aren’t produced in high volume. You don’t really want to run fast design cycles on them, otherwise you never get your R&D payback on them. Worse still, because the sensors are complex and stitched on dye instead of done in one pass, they are far trickier to get into production in the first place. Personally, I was very surprised to see Nikon iterate the D3 to the D3s so quickly. The change involved must have been simple in terms of manufacturing.

        • Anonymous

          Thank you Thom! Finally a logical explanation.

          On the other hand, I would argue about the low volume especially in the case of the D700 replacement.

          In addition, new models often bring manufacturing benefits in shape of 1) better sourcing, 2) lower production costs, and 3) fixing weak points of a good model.

          When I look at the D7000, I can easily see all the above 3 conditions valid. So why can we not see this in the FX line? I cannot believe that sony has not produced a revised version of the 24mp sensor.

          • Mock Kenwell

            Hmm. There’s low demand and it’s hard to do. Is this not what everyone else has been saying? Thom says the same thing and suddenly you’re all good. Man you’re such a troll.

            • Anonymous

              Mock Kenwell, I suggest to call your own MOTHER A TROLL not me. I did not call you names but I should. GFY

              There is no shortage for DSLRs. What Thom says is plain stupid. Just think about it, if there would be lower demand for pro nikon gear then we would not have constant out of stock issues with the D3s and D3x.

              In addition, why don’t you read the cipa reports and perhaps Nikon’s financials. You’d be surprised that actually they sold more this year.

            • Mock Kenwell

              My mother. That’s about the class of comment I expect from you.

              FYI, the financials are reported here on a regular basis. We all know how well Nikon is doing. No one is surprised. Except maybe you.

              And, hmm, gee, why do you think an expensive camera might have frequent OOS issues? Perhaps because they SELL WELL and because they don’t want to keep boatloads INVENTORY? No that couldn’t be it… Let’s see… if they’re selling well, then what’s the business imperative to release a new one? You have to help me out here, this stuff is all so complicated for me.

              If you had a camera that was selling well, why the hell would you make a new one in a down economy until you were absolutely ready to blow people’s minds? One thing’s for sure, there’s tons of really stupid pro photographers out there who are getting totally ripped off with that crappy overpriced camera! What a bunch of suckers! Bet they all wish they had listened to you!

              You really are a glass-half-full dude. Here you have a winning company that is doing well and you’re on here ALL THE TIME kvetching. Go shoot. In fact, that’s where I’m going right now.

          • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

            Despite being a “popular” camera, the volume of sales of the D700 are quite small compared to the D90. I doubt that Nikon has hit 1 million FX bodies yet (cumulatively). That means that if you spend, oh, say a 100 million on R&D for FX during that period, there’s US$100 worth of R&D cost alone in every camera made. Considering that costs get multiplied by about 3.5x by the time you get to retail price, that represents US$350 of the D700’s US$2699 price. So, no, a company is not going to be in a huge hurry to update said camera. That’s one reason why a lot of us were surprised by the D3s and its new sensor. That represented new R&D costs.

            The Nikon pro bodies are on four year cycles. That means that the parts are sourced for a four-year cycle, too. It would be rare that Nikon would re-source something during that cycle, which again is why the new sensor in the D3s is a bit of a surprise. That now leads to the surprise that Nikon hasn’t stuck that same new sensor into a D700s, as it means the Sendai plant is dealing with three FX sensors at the moment.

            As for Sony Semiconductor and new sensors, it’s highly unlikely that Sony Semi would create ANY new DX/APS or FX sensor without a commitment for production from a camera maker (note that Sony Semi is NOT Sony Imaging). They certainly aren’t going to get that commitment from Nikon, who’s perfectly happy with the current D3x and is clearly moving towards their own sensors anyway. That leaves Sony (and maybe Pentax). Sony isn’t selling the CURRENT cameras with 24mp sensors, so exactly how is a new sensor going to fix that?

            The action is at the bottom of the market. That’s where things happen faster and R&D pays back the fastest.

            • Anonymous

              I think your assumption of R&D may not necessarily 100% correct. That is because the R&D activities in FX maybe are much closer related to DX R&D than we think hence the cost of developing anything new is spread much more in the entire line.

              What i was saying that there is demand for these high end products. Of course the demand is not the same as in the lower end but my point was not that. My point was that even today with the old FX cameras Nikon barely can meet the demand.

              On the sony FX comment. You will be surpised by the end of the year, 2 new sony sensors are apparently on their way. (1 with 24mp the other 30+mp)

            • Richard

              Thom,

              I also feel that segregating R&D costs is does not always accurately reflect the benefits of the R&D. Frequently, developments benefit a variety of products rather than just one or two. Additionally, improving yields should be an objective of all sensor production. You have hinted at the yields for the FX sensor, but I do not recall you mentioning actual numbers. I have the feeling (based on multiple sources) that the FX yields are embarrassingly low, so low that one should wonder why Nikon have not tried to find a solution some time ago, keeping in mind that Nikon are a fab-less design house which, for the most part, appears to have worked on refining the work of Sony’s design team.

              Rumors being rumors, it is rumored that Canon have made strides in the resolution of sensors which are capable of being mass produced (not to be confused with their experimental sensors). The proof, however, is in the actual event, not the rumor mill.

              In your example, the $350 R&D cost rapidly plummets as production volume ramps up and market demand, according to conventional economic theory, responds to price changes which are possible with the savings, especially those attributable to more efficient production.

              I wonder what Nikon’s advertising budget per camera body is?

            • alvix

              ..or maybe with the D3s Nikon discovered a simple way to achieve a good SNR, like using a different shielding in a coaxial cable, or using different SMD caps..i dont know…but something that doesnt require to rebuild entirely the production chain, I mean..just “swapping” some parts…like in the PA/HiFI world … ?

            • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

              Certainly there are some things in R&D that apply to both FX and DX. But as far as I know, there are separate R&D budgets on individual products still at Nikon. Note that we’re now in a period where we’ve got a lot of different sensors in play at Nikon (currently 8!). That’s a lot of production D right there, regardless of overlaps in some aspects of the designs. Also the comment about low FX yields ties into this: you can either accept very low yields (which raises price) or you can R&D better FX yields (which raises price).

              And again, demand may be higher than delivery right now, but there’s not THAT MUCH demand. Nikon could bring another 1000 D3s bodies into the US a month and satisfy demand is my guess. That’s 12k units a year, or about 24k units in the product’s lifetime (so multiply that by 3 to get worldwide demand: still less than 100k units). People are thinking that FX demand is much higher than they actually are.

              I don’t think the D3s difference was due to a small change that was nearly cost-free. Even a small change to the masks would cost R&D money, especially since there’s one heck of a lot of testing that goes into production products.

              I’m aware of Sony Semi’s two “new” FX sensors. But as many of you may also be aware, I wrote about what was happening within Sony earlier this summer: upper management wants to cancel further work there.

            • Richard

              Thom,

              What are the MF sensor crowd using for fabs? I realize that they are charging enough for them that inefficiency probably is not a big issue, but are they stitching things together as well? What about Canon’s FX and APS-H fabs?

            • Catastrophile

              i believe –could be wrong– that full frame sensors are possible nowadays to do in one pass (no for stitching). back in the early 2000’s when Canon introduced the 1D with a 1.3x, they said back then that 1.3x was the maximum size they can do in one pass. now things have changed apparently, as i often read on Canon boards that 1.3x format should be abandoned because it is possible to mfr FF in one pass, many people say that but never saw official sources backing this claim.

            • Anon

              Well, if my past history is any predictor of the future, the fact that I just ordered a D700 + lenses means that Nikon will announce its replacement any day now. My last major electronics purchase was a HD-DVD player, less than 24 hours before Toshiba announced they were discontinuing it – which is about par for the course :-). Then, when I upgrade after the new FX body has been out for a year or two, I won’t have missed this years hunting season, or any more kids school pics….

        • Richard

          I never have understood just why it is that the FX sensors have to be manufactured in three passes with the extra masks as compared to DX sensors which are apparently manufactured from a single mask. Just why is it that Sony and Nikon have been unable to resolve this matter? Can it be that Nikon have sought a new production facitlity, at least in part, to get someone who can actually manufacture the FX sensors in quantity and with greater yields?

          I do not know whether the apparently low FX yields at the Sony fab are the result of allignment issues with the three masks or contamination or just which of them is the predominant reason for the low yields.

          “Surely” Nikon have realized that the ongoing “out of stock” issues with the D700 and D3 series means that they could sell many more bodies if they could just get a reliable source of supply for the FX sensors. I have never seen a specific number attributed to the Sony fab yields of FX sensors, just “low” references. I have to suspect that the yields are probably better described as “very low”. I have a hard time believing that it is not possible to very greatly, dramatically even, improve this situation which would reduce costs and allow the sale of a lot more FX bodies.

          As Edwards Deming explained to any number of manufacturers, it is cheaper to do something right the first time, which results in a salable product instead of something you have to pay someone to dispose of . If, for example, the yields were to be comparable to those of DX sensors and the manufacturing process rationalized to the same as a DX sensor, an FX sensor should cost 2 1/2 to 3 times the cost of a DX sensor, not ten times. What an incredible window of opportunity that is!

          P.S. If nikon doubled the sales of FX sensors, the R&D costs would plummet to half of what it is (per unit) which would further enhance their competitive position.

          Is Nikon just “treading water”, trying not to sink, while they develop a new production source? That would seem consistent with all the talk and leaks coming from Nikon, but not much that is really new in the way of bodies/sensors.

          • Anonymous

            Richard, very good explanation.

            +1

          • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

            > I never have understood just why it is that the FX sensors have to be manufactured in three passes with the extra masks as compared to DX sensors which are apparently manufactured from a single mask.
            It’s determined by the maximum gate opening of the machine on which the sensor is fabbed. So you should ask “why don’t they just buy new machines with bigger gates?” Well, such machines are available, and Nikon makes one, but the problem is you really only would need that new, very expensive machine for FX sensors–it doesn’t give you any benefit for smaller sensors, which you make more of. Thus, the FX sensor would have to bear the cost of the new fab, and the quantity of FX bodies sold is still very low. It’s simpler to just do multiple passes on the current machine, even though that, too, increases the cost of the sensor.

            > “Surely” Nikon have realized that the ongoing “out of stock” issues with the D700 and D3 series means that they could sell many more bodies
            You have more faith in Nikon pushing metal than I do. Nikon is pretty darned conservative when it comes to inventory, and they have always tended to make mistakes on the “not enough” instead of the “too much” side. Given that a D4 is due in less than a year now and every pro knows it, Nikon may be trying to second guess future demand too much.

            > As Edwards Deming explained to any number of manufacturers, it is cheaper to do something right the first time, which results in a salable product instead of something you have to pay someone to dispose of
            And as you may figure out from that same explanation, producing too much of something also means you have to pay someone to dispose of it (e.g. end-of-life sales and discounts). Nikon doesn’t like having hanging inventory. They tend to underproduce so that they run OUT of a product prior to introducing a new one.

            > If nikon doubled the sales of FX sensors, the R&D costs would plummet to half of what it is.
            It’s nowhere near that simple. Note that the D700 body no longer commands a US$2999 price. Producing more of them would likely lower the retail price more.

            Where I will agree with you is that Nikon tends to overthink production runs and tries to micromanage them and their inventory far too much. It’s almost as if they don’t want to know how big they can grow to, but want to manage that to something they find “reasonable.” The problem with that attitude is that it lets your competitors off the hook, as they have more time to respond.

            • Richard

              Frankly, I don’t know enough about gate opening size to even speculate whether it is something that can be changed or whether it actually does take a whole new machine. If the result were better yields it would seem that Nikon/Sony would be able to attract production from other camera companies as well.

              I recognize that the CPU/GPU business is headed in the direction of smaller die sizes, but I suspect that there are lessons to be learned from their fabs which would apply to camera sensor production. It just seems that the camera manufacturers are lagging well behind the computer electronics companies in both the development and production of products.

              As far as the quantity of cameras being sold with FX sensors go, IBM once thought that the worldwide demand for (main frame) computers would be, perhaps, five. They also believed that the demand for personal computers would be so low that they did not want to be bothered with maintaining the operating system (IBM DOS) and gave it away to Bill Gates. So I guess you never really know what the potential demand may be.

            • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

              > whether [gate size] is something that can be changed or whether it actually does take a whole new machine.
              It takes a whole new machine. And there’s very few things that need such a large layout capability, so very little demand to put one into place on a fab floor. Someone with more semiconductor experience can probably tell you more–I suspect that there are speed advantages to laying down more silicon at a time, but I’m not sure that those are enough to justify buying a new machine.

              > It just seems that the camera manufacturers are lagging well behind the computer electronics companies
              The thing about sensors is that the big ones don’t get a lot of benefit from the things that are happening in mainstream semiconductors (smaller process, for instance). The sensors used in cell phones might, but not a DX or FX sensor.

              > So I guess you never really know what the potential demand may be.
              Well, you can generally be very wrong in your estimates BEFORE you have any sales experience with them. But once you’ve actually started selling them you should be able to judge demand very well. Indeed, we’ve got eight full frame cameras on the market right now, and we know pretty well what sells and what doesn’t. What I usually hear is that people want “cheaper FX.” Sony proved that low cost alone isn’t what people want. Ironically, two of the highest cost cameras (D3x, M9) are the ones in shortest supply. So it’s not just about “making an FX camera.” It has to be the RIGHT FX camera.

            • Richard

              Thom,

              Thank you for your comments.

              Indeed, it does have to be the right FX camera.

              The only other comment I have is that I am sure that Nikon (and anyone else for that matter) has as separate budget for development costs associated with bringing a specific product to market. Some portion of that budget probably included research and other costs that the company experiences on matters which either may not be uniquely associated with that product or are simply attributed to all product lines as a matter of generalized research. One example might be research into different sensor materials and production processes or process control. Except for a very few people inside the company it would be difficult to know how much of these costs are of such a nature as opposed to development costs uniquely associated with a particular product such as the cost of designing the body (which become fixed costs subject to amortization across the production run), producing the molds & etc to manufacture it, materials costs, and all the other things that make up the cost of goods sold.

              In any event Nikon will let us know what products we may have to choose from in their own time.

              Regards

            • PHB

              Thom

              Wjen i did Vlsi twenty years back, the processes were 20 step for cmos with many layers.

              Issue on FX is surely the die size and the likelihood of a crystal defect in each die.

    • Matt

      I do not know where you live, but the pro photog market in my area is all but dead.

      • Mock Kenwell

        What a silly thing to say. Have you heard of the internet? It’s all the rage.

      • zzddrr

        Matt, three questions

        1) How come hassy releases new pro cameras? Also, Leaf and even Pentax cannot make enough of the 645.

        2) If you think that the pro segment is dead then why on earth is the D3s and D3x constantly out of stock?

        3) Let’s assume that people don’t buy the D3x. If this were true then my #1 explanation would be for this phenomenon is the D3x astronomic price.

        Look, recently I ate my cat because Nikon has not delivered a high resolution small small body camera. So, Nikon really screwed me up because one day it will deliver then I cannot take picture of my cat.

  • amien

    crop 2.5 would be totally useless.

    FF + DX (2 models) would be totally awesome.

    • Sven Felsby

      I have some 20 x 25 cm prints from my teensy pocket camera (C-lux 2) on my wall. Spectators like them. Of course the poster-size prints are made from film or the D300, but “totally useless”? Come on. And here we are talking about a much larger sensor than in the typical pocketcam.

    • Adde

      Useless for you maybe, but for the entry level market it won’t. And Nikon may in the future release a EVIL system based upon APS-C/DX.

      Smaller = cheaper than the rest?

      • hah

        smaller = nosier.
        smaller = less dyanmic range.
        smaller = worse color depth.
        smaller = less bokeh.

        smaller = FTW.

        there are plenty of “cheap” crap cameras out there. Just get a G12 if you like small sensors.

    • Eric

      I don’t think 2.5x would be useless, but I certainly wouldn’t choose it over a 2x or 1.5x option. Plus, you know good and well DPR and other review sites will be doing a direct comparison between this new Nikon, m4/3’s, and Sony NEX. Is it really wise to have lesser IQ than your competitors just to save a bit of size? Isn’t that what normal 4/3’s tried to do against APS-C and fail miserably at it?

      The Sony NEX5 is as small as I’ll ever need or want for an interchangeable lens camera. I understand small is good, but I still have to use the thing, and my hands are simply too large to use anything smaller…and I have average size hands and best.

      • hah

        agreed. APS-C is the only way to go now that sony is in. Canon will surely go that way given they really can’t do anything new and nikon simply can’t afford to be the only one with a useless small sensor. they tried to ignore FX and worked out terrible until they acknowledge people buy nikon for the good, not for the cheap.

      • Roger

        NEX is too big, I need an EVIL camera to replace my point and shoot. NEX is much bigger than my point and shoot.

        For my primary camera, I’ll still use my DSLR, and there I prefer a large camera that fits my hand, D3s is shaped perfectly.

        • Eric

          The only way you’re going to get a camera the size of a point and shoot is by using a P&S size sensor…and if they do that then why bother? You might as well buy a Panasonic LX5 or P7000 and call it a day. I seriously doubt you’d see much of a size reduction from m4/3’s even if Nikon uses 2.5x. The new Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 prime is so small I could loose it in my pocket. They’d have to drop down to 2/3’s size to notice a real difference. If you have to have a pocket size camera that can already be done if you don’t mind using primes. I used to put my EP1 in one pocket and a pancake prime in the other and walk around and it really didn’t bother me…if the GF2 is as small as the rumors are saying then it should make that trick even easier.

          • Eric

            the Dp2 is a point and shoot with a aps sensor, the x1 same idea. You can easily put a aps in a small body as long as it has a fixed not crazy fast lens.

            • Ren Kockwell

              You beat me to it Eric. The DP2 is the model to beat and that wouldn’t be very tough considering it’s shit video, crappy interface and SLOW operation. If Nikon could release a fixed lens compact like that with a crop sensor and great operation, I’d buy two. I just don’t see tge usefulness of a 2.5 crop unless it’s totally pocketable with pancake primes. It’s tough to make an interchangeable lens camera tgat small.

  • Carlos R B

    I dont see the small sensor as a problem (if it has good IQ)…but i think that they maybe will copycat the NEX style (a little too much auto for my taste)…see whats happening the with the P7000…5 seconds delay for raw shooting…and a bunch of QC issues according to dpreview forum users…it seems that dSRLs still are the cameras that Nikon knows to do best….

    • hah

      “I dont see the small sensor as a problem (if it has good IQ)…”

      sorry but that’s exactly the problem. why do you think pictures from a G12 stink compared to even the most basic entry level DSLR? SIZE MATTERS.

      • Carlos R B

        technology is here to improve…as for aps-c, obviously is going to be better than a small sensor, but the camera is not aimed for DSRL users(at least thats what appears)…so if the camera has better high iso than the compacts is good for me…who would think that the D3100 and D7000 with more MP would have better high iso than the 12 mp D300? i want a small camera to carry with me all the time…APS-C sensor aint going to be small…

  • The invisible man

    What about a VR upgrade and a REAL tripod mount for the 10 years old AF-S 300m f 4 ?
    Are they also working on it ?
    :o

    • hah

      it’s called 200-400 f/4. and they are in version 2 already with nano crystal coat.

      • The invisible man

        LOL !
        I just checked at Adorama, $6999.95 (free shipping)
        I can have the AF-S 300 f/2.8 VR II for much lens money and forget about the 300 f/4 !
        :o

        • PAG

          And let’s not forget the weight issue.

          300mm f/4 = 3.2 pounds
          300mm f/2.8 = 6.4 pounds
          200-400mm f/4 = 7.4 pounds

          I guess some people either never bother hand holding a larger lens, or they’ve got a left arm like Popeye.

          • Bob

            Use a monopod. Really. It’s like a tripod, but only one leg. Most pros and experienced photographers shooting long glass use one. Only poseurs would be dumb enough to hand hold a 300mm lens. Only poseurs.

            Most pros use either the 300/2.8 or the 200-400/4, and with either a tripod or monopod. But not handheld–that’s just silly.

            Oh, and Nikon’s priorities are to advance their biggest selling/most influential lenses in their catalog, not your individual needs.

            • PAG

              Bob, very constructive (not) comment.

              First, you’ve obviously never been pelagic birding. Second, I guess you’ve never seen a bird land up in a tree. Heck, it sounds like you’ve never even had a bird fly over your head. Or maybe you just refuse to shoot at anything like that, but that would be you, not the rest of the world.

              As to “most pros”, I watched multiple professional and semi-pro amateur wildlife photographers take flight shots of an Ivory Gull while handholding 300mm to 500mm lenses. I was part of an event covered by National Geographic, and their professional photographer was able to hand hold a long lens. And are you truly saying that professional sports photographers NEVER hand hold a long lens? Really? How about professional photographers covering events they can’t right up to, like the Oscars? They all have tripods or monopods?

              As to your snide remark about my “individual needs”, you really need to stop storing your monopod up your …

    • Geebee

      lol, yes, they’re working on the tripod ;-)

  • Dormant

    I’m worried that Nikon will use EVIL to do something stupid instead of something great.

    The stupid thing would be some sort of camera that interacts with the internet.

    The great thing would be to re-define the camera concept. A lot of the stuff we have on DSLRs is a hangover from film days: eg the mirror and the shutter. The perfect camera would have just a lens and a sensor. The lens would be changeable. Maybe the sensor could also be changeable. Use a tiny camera-mounted monitor for composing and focussing and fancy-dan software for recording still and moving images.

    • http://www.aslightdelay.com aslightdelay

      The “stupid thing,” though, may actually be in the ballpark considering some of the partnerships Nikon has lined up over the last year. They do seem to be angling toward something that’s got some kind of WiFi/3G/4G capability to it, unless I’ve got this backward and some phone company’s going to come out with Nikon-produced, teeny-tiny, easily lost, interchangeable cellular phone camera lenses. :)

    • Antonio Rojilla

      Translation for “something stupid”: something I don’t like.

    • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

      Nikon was looking for cooperation with online and mobile device companies:

      http://nikonrumors.com/2010/07/08/nikon-looking-for-corporation-with-online-and-mobile-device-companies.aspx

    • jason

      strange question here , so dont shoot me down ! but as they have said (nikon) they are working on the evil system (im not so hung up on this evil system as its not what im into a bit like video in dslr) but could this mirrorless system be developed into the dslr system so lets say the D5 in 4-5yrs may become a mirrorless dslr , and if this sort of system wouldn’t work then why ???
      like i said no insults these are just ideas

      • zzddrr

        They no longer have to work on the evil system … they have plenty of evil Nikon execs. Isn’t it evil enough for you? :P

    • Roger

      Modular camera, as in with sensors you can change, is silly. I know Thom Hogan will disagree.

      Modular camera only makes sense for the people wanting to screw around with monochrome sensors and what not. That’d be Thom Hogan and Iliah Borg. For the rest of humanity, modular camera serves no purpose.

      • http://www.aslightdelay.com aslightdelay

        So you think Ricoh designed their modular camera for two people.

      • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

        Since you’re mocking me, I guess I get to respond ;~)

        First, “modular” does not simply mean “replaceable sensor.” It means modular. We used to have fairly modular film cameras, if you don’t remember. The F4 not only sported multiple style grips/batteries, but also offered different viewfinders. Heck, even today’s DSLRs are “slightly modular,” in that they have a body module and multiple choices of lens modules (and even GPS and WiFi modules, albeit external). But even if it did just mean “replaceable sensor” you’d find that there are lot more folk out there than Iliah and I who want it. By my surveys, more than 30% of the prosumer/pro users. Way more.

    • st r

      Interacting with the Internet and wi-fi are almost free. Any portable device of the cheapest kind can do that. I don’t think that you need to choose between either this or more interesting ideas, just as the D7000 has both “scene modes” and AI metering.

      • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

        But as I pointed out to the Nikon execs, modular, programmable, and communicating all go together. If you try to do one without the other two things break down. Consider communications. Is 802.11n the “final” WiFi variant we’ll get? Not a chance. Ditto with cellular, which is changing every few years. Even Bluetooth is in multiple generations. So you can’t just build a fixed communication scheme into a camera without rendering the camera disposable when the communications structure it relies upon changes. That’s why you need “modular” and “programmable,” too: when we go from 3G to 4G in cellular you need a new communications module AND new programming. Especially if the camera is communicating with the Internet, where things like Facebook change almost daily (at least it seems like it).

        Worse still with communications is the traveling photographer. We’ve got four or five common GSM frequencies now, and I suspect we’re going to get more.

        • st r

          Your point is correct on the assumption that we are talking of professional tools, which need to be considered stable for 5 years (standard amortment time). However, even high-end cellphones have a lifespan of 1 year.

          “Modular” and “programmable” remind me of that obsolete word, “serviceable”.

  • Catastrophile

    Here is a better translation of the Q + A that NR admin quoted above:

    Q: Your president, Makoto Kimura, has announced something in that sense [Mirrorless system by Nikon], didn’t he?

    A: Yes, Mr Kimura has already made few comments on this subject. We already started the development of such a camera and we call it the new generation of digital cameras. [ then he talks about a huge gap between the popularity of mirrorless in Japan (20% market share) versus Europe only 5 or 6%, it seems European are more conservative]. We need to sell these cameras all over the world, and to take into consideration [the situation of] the global market to decide when to launch such a product.

    • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

      thanks, this is a better translation – I updated the post

    • alvix

      mmhh..so they mean all of the nikon future cameras will be mirrorless? ..

  • AG

    What would be nice to hear is when they’re planning to start shipping D7000 bodies… the rest is horse sh#t….

  • Darklight

    I think they have an EVIL ready for a few years (waiting on the shelf), but are afraid to launch the new concept.
    Huh, I mean the wait for the right time to market…

  • sflxn

    I have to agree with most people here, Nikon execs need to shutup. We’re tired of FUD. Either be aggressive and forward thinking and deliver products when you start talking about it or shut up. Nikon has been caught behind the curve because of their “gentlemen competition” with Canon is all about conservativeness.

    • Gonads

      Yes, I’ve noticed Nikon execs have been talking a lot, without ever actually saying anything, a bit like politicians. We might do [x], we might not. Brilliant, cheers for the update :)

      • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

        I agree, since they did not show anything at Photokina, Nikon want to ensure the market that they are working on it. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that all those interviews happen in a short period of time, right after Photokina.

        • Richard

          Agreed.

          This is simply some rustling so that people will still believe that there is a person behind the curtain doing something. The problem is that it could be a person behind the curtain making rustling noises to make you think there is something going on.

        • Carlos R B

          Just like they did talking about the G11 killer (P7000), but the results from the released camera so far are very disappointing….

        • http://www.bythom.com Thom Hogan

          No, I don’t think it has anything to do with Photokina. It has to do with the CHANGE in Nikon management. Most of the interviews have been focused on assuring the shareholders (via the business press) that Nikon’s new management has its eye on the ball and correctly sees that the future is different than the past.

  • tsnake

    I have resigned to wait for the D4 if and when it becomes available. Hopefully it will be a ground breaking body.

  • Makoto Kimura

    hmm as far as i am concerned they have 2 weeks to produce something other than a statement about future plans with vague references, and esoteric patent applications. nikon Q… haha what a laugh.

    i’d love to support nikon’s balance sheet and i love the idea of 2.5 crop, but im not going to wait any longer. so sorry. IMO photokina was a huge dud. cant wait to get ride of the $1000 i have burning my pocket on a gf1. the price is right. i heard panasonic is hiring the most interesting man in the world to be their sponsor. he speaks fluent french… in russian.

  • Broxibear

    The swearing and personal attacks are getting out of order…it’s a blog to comment on rumours, not calling each other names because they hold a different view ?
    Hopefully Admin will clean up some of the more abusive posts above.

    • http://nikonrumors.com/ [NR] admin

      Yes, cleaning up right now. Anonymous, please watch your language. Thanks.

      • Anonymous

        All of them were encoded to “F****g” and they meant “F-mounting” :-)

      • Anonymous

        By the way, NR Admin you may want to read them closely because I did not post any personal attack.

        • Roger

          No, you just troll here daily.

          • Anonymous

            Roger,

            I guess you cannot come up with something new.

            • Mock Kenwell

              Nor can you it would seem.

  • http://www.bernardovaghi.com.br Bernardo Vaghi

    I´m waiting for the D7000 complete review! And of corse, the new FF body from Nikon, the answer for de 5D MK II, come on Nikon, show me your best!

  • http://loewald.com/ Tonio

    Can you at least keep it civil? I don’t think there are any enemies here. (Even Canon users are perfectly fine people ;-) ).

    Nikon:

    D3: 2007.
    D3s: 2009.

    2009 — 2007 = 2. 2009 + 2 = 2011.

    Canon:

    5D — 2005.
    5D Mk II — 2008.

    2008 – 2005 = 3. 2008 + 3 = 2011.

    (The 1D equation is harder since it’s lately not been full frame.)

    Sony:

    a900: 2008.
    a850: 2009.

    2009 – 2008 = 1. 2009 + 1 = 2010. OK, where’s the a800?

    (But really, they’re almost identical.)

    • The invisible man

      @Tonio
      I left high school for photography classes because I hated maths, and now you bring it back !
      So I guess I can’t count on you !
      :o

      • st r

        But he can count for you.

    • hah

      just look here
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Template:Canon_DSLR_cameras
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Template:Nikon_DSLR_cameras

      as you can see the only company that missed their FF flagship camera was canon and they will likely release it early 2011.

      NIkon is poised to release the D4/D400 next year, and the D3X 2012 exactly a year after the 1Ds4 to ensure superiority in specs.

      The 5D3 will not be around until late 2011, early 2012. The D800 will show up around the same time if not later since nikon likes to let canon go first, then 1up them.

  • brave new world

    finally we seem to have a common understand: 2011 is a good timeframe for the top-of-the-line model. until then: happy shooting

    btw- what’s wrong about a camera “knowing” a lot – many stunning images have been taken with cameras having such knowledge for 200 USD …

  • http://www.bernardovaghi.com.br Bernardo Vaghi

    D700 october 2008 – 2 yares of lapse!

    Maybe this year de D700 replacement?

    • The invisible man

      @Bernardo
      As long I’m broke there will be no D700 replacement, (I’ll like D900 name).
      So if you want to see the next Nikon FX realease, you can send me some cash, I accept any donations, even few $.
      :o

      • http://www.truphotos.com gnohz

        I want to see the next D400 release. Does it work if I send you some cash? :D

        • Catastrophile

          we miss as customers such a direct way to affect the mfr’s decision making.

          the only available way is indirect, and that’s when large numbers of buyers are united in what they want. eg Canon APS-C shooters asking for more pro’ish body than xxD after the D300 came out, Canon eventually responded to this by introducing the 7D.

  • John Caballero

    I am 100% confident that Nikon will eventually come out with a blowout video camera that will rock the industry. APS sensor or full frame and all the full video necessities like the Panasonic AF-100 only better. Don’t be surprised if it eventually will have RAW format ala RED. Nikon is just beginning to capitalize on the video business possibilities.

    • Joel

      And I’ll be 100% surprised. :) Well, maybe not really, because it’s clear that the market wants a video camera with APSC/FF sensors, but Nikon has lagged behind the competition in video from the very beginning (excluding the D90 was the first video DSLR). And as more time goes by, the more Sony and Panasonic lenses show up and get further entrenched. Canon/Nikon do have an uphill battle.

      The only upside for Canon/Nikon is that I have yet to see a Panasonic GHx, Sony NEX, or Sony A33 in a Best Buy yet. That probably won’t be true of a Canon/Nikon EVIL camera.

  • D

    I think this year Nikon made great progress in the lens department. They also have the cameras that can beat anything else out there (D3x and D3s), although a a premium cost. I think any complaints now simply show the complainer as silly and not seruous. Maybe in video, Nikon is still behind, but I think for most pros that is a minor point at this time and for the rest Nikon is more than fine at video recording.

    • aetas

      Why do you have to be a pro to want more mp. Im fine with 12 but would sometimes like the crop if nothing else of a higher mp if we could keep the iso fantastic which nikon is great at doing. I am not a pro but my photography has paid for all my gear. I still think 8000 is alot of money for a camera.

  • Kingyo

    A Nikon exec told me recently that the D700 was actually a fluke camera not meant to happen.. that it was supposed to only be the D3 & D300 paired and upgraded together (thus we now have D3s & D300s).. where does the D700 fit in? So he said Nikon abandoned the D700 and that there will be a D4 & D400 (each with 16mp + 1080p video) coming out by end of 2011. That is all true..unless I imagined it ;)
    p.s. I’m a big fat liar :D

  • sflxn

    You know we’re all just tired and angry. m43 and NEX weren’t exactly what we were waiting for. We’ve been hoping Canikon can do it right and are betting on it, but it’s such a long wait, mainly because of their gentlemen coopetition. We really need some competition to rock this lazy duoply to change.

    • Catastrophile

      I think the main disappointment with m4/3 and NEX is that they seem to be meant for the consumer/entry level. Nothing midrange or higher so far. but starting a new system by flagships (eg Oly E1) or by high end (eg Panasonic L1) doesn’t seem like a good recipe for the success of a new range (at least it wasn’t in the 2 mentioned examples). in contrast starting by entry-level seems to work.

      I would expect Canon & Nikon to start their EVIL systems by low end and after few years they introduce mid level equiv to 60D or D90. Oly and Pana are talking about mid-level m4/3 products coming next year.

    • Bob

      Fuji X100.

  • Nikki

    He mentions the Leica M9 in the interview. Actually I think this is the best shot at mirrorless, so far. Just a bit too expensive.

    Couldn’t somebody make that cheaper – a full frame sensor range finder (maybe the rangefinder optics could be adjusted for 24 to 85 mm lenses?). I’d appreciate autofocus though. Maybe they can add a fast phase detect AF by a translucent mirror – a single centered point would do for me. And then throw in lenses of f/1.2 aperture. A 35 and a 50 for starters and a 24 and a 85 to add up to that. This would be the perfect system for me.

    • Roger

      Full frame rangefinders, other than Leica, will not happen. Rangefinders are an obsolete concept, they have been for decades.

      Eventually, you will get a FF EVIL camera, with new mount and lenses. Pellicle mirror would be a wrong move, there are nasty compromises with pellicle mirror. Right move is PDAF on sensor, Fuji already has this, other manufacturers will have it too soon.

      • http://designingreen.net Vall

        They are not obsolete.

        It’s just another way of taking photos.
        Give http://www.ultrasomething.com/photography/2010/07/to-whom-it-may-concern/ a read. :-)

        v.

      • Mock Kenwell

        +1. They’re obsolete for the mainstream market, and Nikon is not going to waste R&D on a niche product of that expense.

        I would much rather have a digital G2 than another M9. IMO, the G2 is everything the M9 is (even the lenses are as good or better) PLUS autofocus.

  • Eeyli

    Everytime a Nikon exec says something useless, somewhere in the world a puppy dies.

    • The invisible man

      I thought Puppies were a protected species !

      I can see Nikon’s executives, technicians, and representatives reading NR on their lunch break and having sooooooooooooooo much fun !

      “I want my D900 now !”
      “If Nikon don’t do this and that, I’ll switch to Canon !”
      “The 300mm f/4 need VR and a new tripod mount !” (that’s me)
      “The 50mm should be made in Japan, not in China !”
      “The D3 is 3 years old, the D4 should be here by now !”
      :o

      • DX2FX

        There could be a new 50mm f1.2 coming, made in Japan, with the gold ring.

        • Azmir

          Damn, that would be cool.

          • DX2FX

            Personally, I prefer the new 35mm f1.4G with a wider angle. I will get one.

            • alvix

              any chance to have some manual focus lenses with a real nice and well damped focus ring ? ..just a thought…

      • jason

        pmsl

    • Rosco

      “Everytime a Nikon exec says something useless, somewhere in the world a puppy dies”

      Well that’s a result! We should see less dog pictures on DPreview soon then? Great stuff. How about “Every time a Nikon exec speaks another brick goes out of production”? Less brick walls has got to be good too? :-)

      • The invisible man

        @Rosco
        Well, as long there will be Supertramp’s fans singing the song, the wall will be there !
        :o

        • tsnake

          wasnt that Pink Floyd?

          • The invisible man

            Yep, you’re right ! I guess it was so long ago…..I even forgot about that band.
            Did Supertramp sing it also or it’s just my imagination ?
            :o

            • Mock Kenwell

              That’s just your imagination. Come on, IM, you can’t mix up SuperTramp with Pink Floyd. That’s sacrilege.

    • jdsl

      how many puppies die at once when that blink, blink dude speaks? :)

  • slightly fuzzy

    I’ve been seeing little articles in trade magazines that make me think that what Sony/Canon/Nikon are working hardest on is full frame movie cameras. It’s more of a hunch, really…
    But think about it…right now, for theatrical movies and prestige television shows, film continues to be the gold standard because conventional small-sensor video doesn’t deliver the image qualities cinematographers want.
    Full frame digital cameras however seem to be a different kettle of pixels. There are lots of interesting lenses already in existence, the technology is field proven. All that’s really needed is a body designed specifically for the needs of the motion picture industry. Perhaps that’s why we’re not seeing any new FF still cameras right now. They’re all racing to become the next Panavision.

    • NikonFF&DxUser

      What are you kidding me? Why would they try to compete with Panavision and try to sell a $50k still camera with HD video. How many photographer will buy that?

    • Catastrophile

      if what’s needed is a video-capable camera with large sensor, there are already many 4/3, APS-C & FF video-capable DSLR’s or EVIL’s. the issue from the PoV of videographers is that these are still cameras, their form factor & ergo is meant for still photography not video. And the lenses while they include some excellent quality ones for stills and are cheap compared to high grade video lenses, they may exhibit quality issues (eg lens breathing), that are non-issue to still photography but big problem for videography (because of the different nature of the two).

      in conclusion pro video equipment needs to be meant for video and it costs much more than pro photography equipment. the sensor size and image quality of current video DSLR’s and EVIL’s is not the issue for the low-budget movie makers who want to use these cameras.

      • st r

        I agree; I just don’t understand why people buy still cameras for video, and then complain that they don’t do video well (ergonomics, focus, rolling shutter…)

        If you go “cheap” you have to accept the limitations. Otherwise, buy high-end VIDEO, not photo, equipment.

        • Roger

          +1

        • Broxibear

          You make a good poit st r…personally I’d applaude Nikon if they decided to only have video in their consumer class of cameras and kept their professional class photographic only.
          I doubt it’ll happen though?

        • Mock Kenwell

          -1

          It’s not that hard to shoot good video with modern SLRs. And the barrier to entry is now gone which opens up a whole new world for indy film makers. If you can’t figure out how to shoot a good video with a DSLR, you probably don’t shoot video very often and/or you’re just not using your imagination. There’s great stuff being done with them every day. Every system has limitations.

  • http://Www.Shortfingerphoto.com Nubz

    I just want the old crappy D3s to be cheaper so I can justify the purchase

    • Mark Astle

      Now that would be nice.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/rhlpedrosa/ rhlpetrus

    KR and his D3100 x D40 x D3 comparison:

    http://kenrockwell.com/nikon/comparisons/2010-09-29-iso/index.htm

    Holds up well into 6400 for DX, then 12800 is NR’ed to death. These are jpegs, I’d say take NR out and RAW, 1.5-2 stops re D3, so about same as D90.

    But the great news is the low ISO. 100-400 it has better tone and details compared to D3 (these ae, again, jpegs). Likely weaker AA in place, but tone at 100 is just outstanding.

    • Discontinued

      Did you donate?

      • Roger

        You mean, donate to Ken’s growing family? lol

        • Mock Kenwell

          Yes he did and I thanked him.

    • Denko

      Don’t get me wrong, I too like the looks regarding the IQ at base ISO and there about. The problem I have is that he was using a much older lens on the D3… why didn’t he use the 80 mm or something… sure bokeh is not the same so again the background noise wouldn’t be comparable either. So even if the result that Ken shows us is interesting it definitely ends up in the statistics realm of things as in “lies, damned lies and Statistics.” Whether this is because he willfully wants to do it or just because he isn’t scientifically endowed is a matter of debate. IMHO it is the latter.

    • st r

      Regarding jpegs, I think that this is the correct way to look at photo cameras, not the “scientific” approach.

      Images should be as good as possible right out of the camera. Take a sports photojournalist who follows a day of competitions and comes home with 20000 shots, one of which must be published the day after. I think this number is quote realistic, sometimes even an underestimate.

      Now, consider this: if you just look at each photos for 1-2 seconds (say 1), only to have a VERY quick look at them costs you 20000 seconds, which makes 5 hours and half. How much additional time would you allow for careful postprocessing?

      If I were a photographer, in this scenario I would even shoot in basic jpeg to keep files light. Otherwise, if I needed quality (e.g. fashion, ads) I would use a Hasselblad with a digital back or something similar.

      The most demanding applications for a digital camera would be those for which you pursue an artistic intent, but on difficult locations (National Geographic-style reportages). But I doubt that serious photographers need a web review to tell a good camera from a bad one…

  • asu

    i hope nikon will bring evil with bigger than 2,5x crop factor, maybe 2x or better 1,8x
    so they can keep small lens and better IQ than micro four third,
    and not forget hybrid viewfinder like fuji x100 or maybe better

    • Discontinued

      Or maybe 1.9 or 1.95 ? ? ?

      That would allow lenses to be smaller than 1.8 and the IQ would surely still be much, much better, just waaaaaaaaay better than FT. Or maybe 1.85 ? ? ?

    • Ant

      I think Nikon might choose to use a smaller sensor deliberately to keep a performance differentiation between the EVIL products and the core DSLR line. They could be worried about this product stealing market share from above rather than below.

      • Catastrophile

        Here is what happened:
        Nikon & Canon CEO’s met secretly to discuss how to avoid direct competition between their future EVIL systems. Canon CEO said: “the best way to avoid direct competition is that you & we pick two totally different formats one too big the other two small. Which one would you like to do?”. Nikon CEO: “we are going to do the small one, smaller than DX or even m4/3″. Canon CEO: “and we are going to do a 1.3x APS-H EVIL” –> http://www.canonrumors.com/2010/06/aps-h-evil-cr1/

  • Nikon Tandoori

    So now that Nikon execs confirmed that EVIL cameras will be just toyish P&S, why should we still give a shit about all these EVIL rumours ?

    After all it was obvious, how can anyone conceive a FF body mirrorless ?

  • tsnake

    So I suppose all this mirrorless crap is going to stand in the way of getting some high end high mp cameras that some of us profeesionals can really use. That’s all I need is another point n shoot piece of crap to suffer through for another 2 years. All I want is an affordable 30+ mp that performs as well or better than the D3x

    • Roger

      You’re absolutely right about mirrorless being crap right now. I’m sure you’ll get what you want eventually, 30+ mp and affordable, but it may take a while ….

      • tsnake

        Actually, affordable isnt really even a requirement for me.
        If I knew that there wouldnt be a better option on the horizon to the D3x, I’d buy one right now. But the thought of dropping 8K on a body, and then another 8K on a few lenses I want is troublesome if Nikon were to come out with something I’d rather have.
        Dont get me wrong; I am using a D700 now with a D300 for my backup, and have been producing nice images. but my creative vision is crying for something much more intensive.
        Optimally, I would own both a D3s and a D3x.

  • tsnake

    Professionals. My fingers werent trainined for typing.

  • Sarge

    I hope they get on with it soon, otherwise I’m about to commit to a GH2 or NEX setup in November.

    I’m half thinking of converting everything to Canon, unless Nikon starts demonstrating some convergence leadership. With regard to video, the D7000 barely keeps pace with the 7D, and there’s NO full frame 5D competitor (where’s the updated D700 with video??).

    I shoot with a D3 and have had many prior Nikon bodies, and own many Nikkor lenses… I greatly prefer Nikon imaging, but I’m very interested in moving into video for work. What say you Nikon? If you’re going to stay committed to the back of the ‘convergence’ pack, your only future customer conversions will be from Sigma… not a big pool there, eh?

    Get on with it already! Turn some heads!

    • Mock Kenwell

      I went and bought a GH1 with a Nikon adapter for video. It’s terrific. When the D700s is released, I’ll sell the GH1 and buy that. Problem solved.

  • Broxibear

    “I hope they get on with it soon, otherwise I’m about to commit to a GH2 or NEX setup in November.”
    There’s nothing happening this year in terms of the mirrorless camera Sarge…Look at the SB-700, it was announced in mid Sept but won’t be in shops until mid Nov.
    If you’re interested in video work then why not get a D3100 as an extra body, it’s got 1080p24 video, it’s not expensive and will cover your video work until 2011 when I think Nikon will announce their new bodies…If after seeing the new bodies you still want to move to Canon then you haven’t lost too much money if you decide to switch ?
    I know a few photographers who switched from Nikon to Canon before the D3 came out…after it came out some switched back and some didn’t, but it cost all of them a lot of money.
    Do your maths carefully before switching from any manufacturer because it will be expensive.

  • Gary

    Given the fact that these rumors have persisted for a while, with no evidence of a real camera, I would say that it may be a rather long time before Nikon releases a mirrorless camera.

    I don’t doubt that Nikon will eventually do this but at this point I would bet later rather than sooner.

    • litebyte

      Beginning of next year (March/April), at the PhotoExpo the presentation

  • Luk

    Nikon D5000 successor will be an EVIL?

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