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Nikon Df demand not as strong as the D800

Nikon-Df-camera-with-Nikkor-58mm-f1.4G-lens

Dream combo: Nikon Df with Nikkor 58mm f/1.4G lens

I received some unofficial information from different retailers and based on the number of pre-orders, it seems that the demand for the Df is not even close to the demand for the Nikon D800 when it was officially announced. The Df is currently not even in the top 20 best selling DSLRs on Amazon (D610 is on #14).

I am still questioning Nikon's strategy since they first cut their forecast three months ago because of poor mirrorless sales in US and Europe. At that time Nikon said that they will concentrate on new entry level DSLR cameras. Three months later Nikon introduces the high-end $3,000 Df camera, which was perceived as a great but overprices product. Few days after the Df announcement, Nikon cut their sales forecast for high-end cameras...

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  • saicode

    The way Nikon ditched D600 buyers and brought D610 I have lost trust on Nikon…

  • droll

    Nikon has been struggling with quality issues since digital era starts. Admittedly there were some ups and downs along the way, but they’ve been behind Canon most of the time. D800 is good, but not that good technically. Remember that the competitors including Canon, Fuji, Olympus, Sony etc, are all much wealthier enterprises than Nikon, and has various technology to change the conception of camera in various ways. Nikon is extremely limited in the breadth of their business and has never led this business. Think about ideas of full-frame DSLR, mirrorless, and retro-looking cameras. They’ve just been following the path someone had already created and made popularity.

    • TheInconvenientRuth

      Congratulations, you have just won “Canon epmloyee of the month”. Here’s a certificate and a balloon.

  • Duncan Dimanche

    well I’m waiting for a video capable version of this camera… maybe i’m not the only one….

  • Watcher

    The reason it’s not in the top 20 is because Amazon for some reason hasn’t marked it as a DSLR yet. It’s currently #81 in Electronics > Camera & Photo > Digital Cameras, which is somewhere between the EOS 6D (16th in DSLRs) and the D5100 (17th in DSLRs).

    Last night, when I first did this comparison, it would even have slotted in at 10th place.

    Still not a very strong showing, but at least firmly in the top 20!

  • TheInconvenientRuth

    Grovelling time.. ONZ

    I recently posted that I found the Df viewfinder to be ‘less suited to MF than the D800′ a day ago. 2 reasons why I’m retracting this statement.

    1) Today NPS brought us a proper production sample to play with and it was a big difference. What the difference is, is not clear to me, maybe better coating, better quality glass, IDK. But this does look a LOT better and focussing MF is a noticably easier.

    2) Bjørn Rørslett, – whose thoroughness in testing and knowledge of Nikon cameras/lenses I highly respect – also came to the same conclusion that the Df is better suited to MF than the D800. And if Bjørn says so, I really have no reason to doubt his superior knowledge.

  • Joven

    I wish people who are saying that they’ll just get the Sony A7[r] would stop crying about the price, it’s idiotic. How is price be such a big issue, but yet you’re willing to start a new system!? Do you people realize how ridiculous that sounds? Especially b/c the “fast glass” for the A7 are f/4s (zooms) and 2.8s (primes).

    Some of you keep acting like it’s meant to be a replacement to some camera in the current lineup (or past camera), or that the tech in it is “outdated.” As if what’s in the D800 and D4 are somehow over the hill. If that’s the case, then the D800 and D4 should be MUCH cheaper than what they are now.

    I think some of you were just hoping for a D700 “replacement” in this camera, and turned sour once you didn’t get it. It amazes me how many of you were telling D600 owners to get over the fact that it was $2,100 when it came out, to be happy that it was an “affordable” full-frame camera, and corners had to be cut (e.g. 1/250 flash sync, 1/4000 max shutter, 39-af points, no AF-ON button). However, when it comes to getting a D4′s sensor for less than 3 grand, but “gimps” the camera, somehow Nikon is doing you wrong?

    • JohnMcClane

      So true. I think lately people expect every new camera to be leaps and bounds better than the previous ones (regardless of their place in the lineup). I have no clue where this mentality came from but it’s ridiculous. This camera is awesomely priced for all that it offered. In it’s simplest form it is the current generation’s D700 – the D4 sensor in a smaller body at 1/2 the price. If I had the extra money, I’d buy one now but I don’t have the funds currently. That doesn’t mean I’m upset about the price, it just means I’ll have to wait :)

      • FuelDoor

        I am in the same boat as you.

  • Neopulse

    The reason why it wouldn’t be doing so well ( for the moment to me) are for these reasons:

    1) Already an affordable FF camera came out last year (D600) and this year (D610). So not many consumers are looking to have a 3rd or 4th body chances are to their current setup.

    2) The fact that since the D600 problem, people would rather do the “wait and see” approach when it comes to a camera that just came out to see if there has been any problems. And if not, chances are will buy it.

    3) The price, it is rather high for this camera, but if the consumers find this to be amazing and “word of mouth” hype like what happened to the D800/E than chances are people might buy it.

    • JohnMcClane

      1) I mostly agree but I really think that Nikon IS trying to market to the consumers looking for 3rd or 4th bodies… there may not be many of them, but that’s who they’re targeting.

      2) Nikon is committed to regaining their reputation. The release of the D610 shows they are offering a no bull-$%#! solution – the problem is fixed. They will not allow it to happen again. Now, will consumers believe them?… we’ll see ;)

      3) Again, I think Nikon has priced it according to their target market. They’re quite aware of how to price to their target markets… but did they choose the right market? We’ll see.

      • JorPet

        Pretty much my thoughts exactly. I HAVE a D700 and a D800. I have no real need for this new camera, but I am likely to purchase it because it is smaller, it has a D4 sensor, it has every control and feature that I need it to have. On top of that it is a beautiful design, which actually does matter to me.

        The other point, is that this likely is meant to fill out the D4 sensor production line to keep it running near max. They aren’t looking to sell that sensor to everyone and they don’t want to have to pay to increase capacity. This is designed to back-fill the current line to capacity,

        • FredBear

          Very sensible comments you’ve made and I fully agree.

      • Neopulse

        I agree with your perceptive view.

  • smac

    Most, if not all of us, want to see Nikon flourish and hopefully still be a major player in 10 years time.
    If the Df if is all they can (cynically) offer to a diminishing market, they are in big trouble.

  • Patrick Lam

    It is wonderful that Nikon decided to produce the Df, it must have taken a lot of deliberation and good amount of design effort internally to order to produce a product like the Df. Like Fujifilm with the X100, it takes a lot of courage and belief to introduce a retro camera like the Df in this day and age.

    I suspect pricing the Df must have been a difficult decision, but price is only one of many variables when it comes to overall product design, considering all the other design choices Nikon has made with the Df. IMHO, I felt Nikon has succeeded in creating a camera that is very special.

    It is also much more than a camera that is designed to appeal to folks who used to shoot with F3, FE/FM. The Nikon faithfuls is obviously a very important consideration, but important as that might be, the Df is also an important statement and proud reminder of its history and heritage.

  • roman dulce

    One thing ! ITS BIG ! Should be smaller… alpha a7 class

    • TheInconvenientRuth

      Soooo…. a FF DSLR should be the same size as a FF Mirrorless?
      Genius… Let’s compare the A7 to the Nikon 28Ti.
      Ehrmagehrd, the A7 is so huge, fat, total fail. After all, the 28Ti is also a FF mirrorless, right?

      • Guest

        not the same… but smaller for sure… I talkin about something market-braking to be…
        Comparing film and digi… u must be high ;)

      • roman dulce

        not the same… but smaller for sure… I talkin about something market-braking to be…
        Comparing film and digi… u must be high ;) cheers :)

    • roman dulce

      We have a d600 sized camera for a price of d800 and without video… Yes it is a good sensor… But a product like this dosnt have a target group… well.. for the price at least…
      And again… i would pay such a price… if it was smaller…
      iLL stick with fuji xe-2… even if its crop…

      • Joven

        No, it has a target group, it’s just that you’re not in it.

        • roman dulce

          Of course it is… but its to small… thats what i wanted to say… And sell’s will talk for themselves.
          it is a good camera, but overpriced.

        • Guest

          Of course it has… but its to small… thats what i wanted to say… And sell’s numbers will talk for themselves.
          it is a good camera, but overpriced.

        • roman dulce

          Of course it has… but its to small… thats what i wanted to say… And sell’s numbers will talk for themselves.
          Like a said , i would pay, no probs… if it where smaller a lil bit…
          It is a good camera, but overpriced for what it delivers.

  • Austin

    I don’t think anyone’s surprised. It’s a fun idea but there’s little market for a camera such as this. (I.E. the same people who’d by the Lunar).

  • Rich

    For what information I have, at the moment, the Nikon Df + the AF-S Nikkor 50mm 1:1.8G looks great. Video is not my cup of tea, so lacking this ability, for me, is a nonissue. It has enough to suit me.

  • Tu Vinh Dong

    there is no way i would ever buy any pre order again after the d800. left focus = impact damage wtf have to go all the way to manager to get thing done and that is frustrating.

  • Dweeb

    Could that be because Nikon are playing the Joker in the deck?

  • Bill Pahnelas

    it ain’t as good as the D800, either…

  • mark papke

    Looks like they are 0 for 2. If Nikon keeps making stupid investments like this they will be going out of business.

  • http://marsweekly.wordpress.com/ Mars Observer

    I can understand the lower than expected demand – likely many people are still sitting on the fence, trying to decide which new FF to buy – the Sony A7/7r, or the Nikon Df.

    Luckily I have a post this week “The Nikon Df And the Sony A7/7r – Which One To Buy (the definitive guide” which I think will help.

    http://marsweekly.wordpress.com/

    Wishing everyone at NR a great weekend!!

  • Integral Moments

    It might not be as good as the other high end like D800/E or D610, yet go check Adorama for the Df, its almost going out of stock soon…

    I guess the annoyed people wanna complain more by testing it, so they have more to talk about…

  • Gordon

    I like this camera and I hope that it is successful. The price is higher than I’d have hoped for, but it doesn’t necessarily seem overpriced. I like the (apparent) build quality, controls and size. A faster frame rate in this size would have been good, and at the price I’m not convinced that video abilities needed to be scrapped – put the video controls into an accessory port since most video users are not adverse to adding things to their SLRs. I’d like to own one, and as I already have a D800, it’s more desirable to me than a D610. It may be a serious consideration around tax refund time next year.

  • Andrew

    Df seems like a cool camera… but overpriced. I would strongly consider buying it if it drops to around $ 1000- $1500 – then I could have it as a second camera for parties and city travel, I would not take it to Montana , and I don’t think it is meant for serious photography- it just does not make sense to attach 70-200 2.8 to it. I am not wedding photographer but I can imaging it would be great to have this for no-flash photography as a 2d camera too. So, to summarize – it seems to be designed for

    1- rich who just want a nice, compact , cool looking camera capable of amazing images without all the mess that comes with flash and lens choices.

    2- 2d camera , esp for parties and non-intrusive photojournalistic work , wedding photographers

    3- Alternative travel camera.

    • Gordon

      This isn’t a $1500 camera – it has metal frame, weather sealing and more complex switch gear. It isn’t designed to compete on purely technical features – it is designed for people who value the ergonomic features that Nikon have returned to the SLR and who are prepared to pay for them.

      The Df is every bit as capable of using a 70-200 2.8 and an external flash and confounding you with choices. It is a full-frame Nikon system camera just as the D4, D800 or D610 are and just as relevant for people who value serious photography.

      I don’t agree that it’s overpriced. I think it’s a niche product at this price and that most people will look at cheaper cameras (D610) or more feature rich cameras (D4, D800) instead. However there are people who will pay for the capabilities (mechanical controls and size) provided by this camera. Provided it performs as well as suggested, there will be many serious photographers buying it.

      Many photographers need or want two bodies. I hope this camera works for me as a complement to my D800.

      • BLight

        Well, i think none of you is really right or wrong. How you judge if the camera is overpriced? or under priced? or right priced? How do you know what a “full weather sealing” costs to manufacturer or how that compares to a 51 point AF? Or what is the cost adder for mechanical dials? Or the cost reduction for taking out the pop-up flash? Does anyone in this forum knows? I guess not… It is much easier to compare 2 cameras with similar characteristics (typical in the Nikon line-up), but not a totally new concept. Not knowing the manufacturing cost struture of this camera, we can’t judge if they’re asking too much or not. Not to mention the specific tool-set needed for the production (casts, and other specific tools). Being a limited series, they will have to “charge” the depreciation of those tools to a smaller amount of cameras/customers. Bottom line is, one can afford it or not, one can like its aesthetics or not, one can blame the development team for not including a split focus prism or not. But you can’t really argue “it should definitely be cheaper based on its specs” or the opposite. No camera will ever please everyone. I for once, liked Nikon’s move to offer something different for a change. Can I afford it? Maybe not. But i will not criticize Nikon for this product lauch nor will I criticize those who buy one.

  • Lee Butterley

    It’s too expensive, surely? I recently made the DX vs FX decision in September, and for my use I decided the advantages of a D600 over a D7100 weren’t really worth it. However after learning and enjoying photography on an old Zenit TTL, the Df with its physical manual controls may have persuaded me full frame – were it not so pricey.

    Shame really.

  • Saffron Blaze

    The problem with the Df is that it isn’t a worthy D700 replacement. The sensor was the right choice but the rest of the package is all cosumer grade.

    • JohnMcClane

      Please, post a video of your hands-on review of this “consumer grade” camera.

      • Saffron Blaze

        You mean the D610? Because other than the sensor and the shell that is exactly what you get when you buy a Df. If you want to tell me the D610 is not consumer grade then we all know you are bonkers.

  • Lamar Lamb

    I just took a look through some of the Amazon ratings. The D610 is only rated at 3 stars. Looks like Nikon’s D600 debacle has crossed into the D610 ratings. Lots of very negative comments coming from (ex?) D600 owners. Nikon really screwed up and screwed lots of customers with the way they handled (or didn’t handle) that one. I also saw where they have new D700′s listed for $3300. Wow!

  • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

    I think this is not what Nikon had hoped for. I was all in favour for this camera when we still only had rumours. I hoped for $1700-$1900 price (close the d600 considering the different tradeoffs). This would have created greater demand, and brought d4 chips price down (assuming it’s more expensive to manufacture due to low quantities). Knowing Nikon, I expected a higher price, however, something in the range of $2300-2400. Would have been logical in the sense of appealing to those who needed a second body to their d800s, d610s, etc. But this is a small mistake. There are bigger problems with the DF.

    The exposure compensation button is the most used button on my d800. I do lots of backlit shots, stage shots, audience shots, and I often stay between -1 and -3 EV. EC adjustment is lighting fast thanks to the well placed EC button close to the shutter. I can do EC adjustments in a pinch, with eyes to the viewfinder, in a fraction of a second. Without this, I couldn’t get many shots I wanted. Example: http://z7photo.com/2013/10/magic-marmalades/ The first 2 shots are at -3 EV (just checked!). Exposure compensation is on the wrong side of the DF and it’s fiddly. I don’t want to fiddle. That’s not how I do events. I go with the flow and want my camera out of the way, concentrating on composition, lights and action. This is impossible on the DF.

    If you check my comment history, you’ll see I was pretty positive about the DF, but after a few days of thinking, I find it less and less appealing, especially at this price point. I do want that d4 sensor – above ISO 1600 it maintains almost a stop of dynamic range and colour depth advantage on top of ISO. For us, low-light shooters this is quite tempting, for limited DR and colour depth is a serious problem (less white balance leeway and more blown out colour channels, especially with fancy coloured stage lights).

    And than there is my pet-peeve with d800′s shooting banks. They are completely useless. Thom Hogan came up with a really complicated system of trying to make it work, which just proves how pointless and counter-intuitive it is. Nikon solved this problem with the U1 & U2 banks on d6xx/d7xxx bodies. Now look at that PASM dial? How many custom banks could Nikon have there, making it a truly “hybrid” camera. Swithing between flash mode & “stage” mode is a pain on the d800, would be a flick on the d7000. Why can’t Nikon do such a simple thing with the DF? So hence my pessimism. I think that many photographers are going through the same issues as I am. What bothers me the most how really small things screwed up this release. It’s just Nikon again turning a blind eye to their customer’s needs :-/

    • confused

      “I don’t want to fiddle. That’s not how I do events. I go with the flow and want my camera out of the way, concentrating on composition, lights and action. This is impossible on the DF.”

      I think you misunderstand the target group and purpose of this camera. Events? Flow? You’ve seen the teasers. This is a travel(-ish) camera, for personal pictures and not work, taken at leisure. At least that’s how I understand the placement as shows by the ads.

      If you do need all of the things you mentioned (“I do want that d4 sensor”), then just buy the D4 ☺

      • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

        To tell you the truth, I didn’t think the teasers have a point at all :-/ If you’re right, then Nikon missed it’s target group. The retro feel, the looks of the camera (I love the looks!), the size, weight, apparent balance, the excellent sensor would appeal to a lot of shooters. And I’d assume that good ergonomics is an issue for a large number of these people. By screwing this part up, Nikon effective limited the target audience to Scotsmen in the wild… Ok, kidding.

        The point is that with just some more thought (like usable memory banks) or just applying common sense (EC placement) and perhaps better pricing, Nikon could have made a killing with this camera. Fuji gets it. Check where the EC dial is on a Fuji – it’s exactly where any Nikon DSLR shooter would expect it. Screw-ups like this puts me on the waiting list. I’m supremely happy with my Nikon gear (d800, 4 lenses, 2 sb-700 1 sb-910). I hope Nikon gets it right the next time. I can wait (but I’m really starting to like the Fuji system). Not just the looks, but the elegance and simplicity of controls. I don’t think I’m alone with this feeling :-/

  • Jon Ingram

    In some ways I wonder if over-charging for this camera was Nikon’s plan all along. For example, those who are rationally comparing only feature sets will take a D800 or D610 (someone like me, for example). But those who are more swayed by the looks and the D4 sensor but don’t care about things like full-frame focus-points will buy it anyway, just for fun, thus avoiding cannibalizing the D800 or D610 sales. Maybe they are just targeting those with disposable income who will buy it on top of their already expensive high end Nikon cameras because it mounts their Nikkor glass and looks cool, regardless of feature set.

    • smac

      No way to run a business though

      • Jon Ingram

        Agreed

      • JohnMcClane

        How? How is this a bad move by Nikon?

        We have no idea how much it costs them to make.
        We have no idea how many they’ve made.
        We have no idea how many people actually will buy them.

        We’re all making too many assumptions because we feel this isn’t the product that WE want/need. If we feel this isn’t for us, then it isn’t for us. This isn’t the end-all, be-all for Nikon. It is a supplemental camera to their arsenal that will cater to a select crowd. Not everything has to be a cashcow to be successful for a company. If this sells to Nikon’s expected numbers, it will be a success and even better cameras to come.

        • smac

          I get your thrust. However, I feel we should be vocal when it isn’t the product that WE want/need and there are significant numbers out there that feel the same way.

          • JohnMcClane

            Very true.

    • Gordon

      Are you sure that they are overcharging? Re-evaluate the cost of the full-frame SLR cameras on the market. The entry price is around $2000 and includes the 6D and D610. These are not metal-framed weather-sealed cameras aimed at professional photographers – to get that you have to jump to the 5D or D800, both of which are quite keenly priced nearer $3000. The Df not only has D800 build quality, but it has more expensive dials and switch gear. Yes, you sacrifice some features to get the ergonomic improvements that the Df brings (size, weight, controls) but the price is in line with the market for a camera of its build and capability.

      I don’t think Nikon are over-charging. I think that they are charging more than many people want to pay, but I also think that most of those people aren’t being realistic and are actually looking for a different camera. Nikon is a small company and you’ll have to wait for that different camera. This is not a budget full-frame DSLR and it is not a full-frame mirrorless camera like the Sony A7. Complaining that it isn’t won’t make it one.

      This is a niche camera and it’s very likely to be successful in its niche.

  • Ernest Lee Cy

    Nikon needs to understand the consumer behavior before lunching their products. The market trend is to have everything in one. No video, no this no that? Good luck!

    • Saffron Blaze

      Many things would have been forgiven if the price reflected those loses and compromises.
      Paying for D800 and getting a D610 without video, 1 card slot and no flash is not compensated by the excellent yet ageing D4 sensor.

      • Lamar Lamb

        Exactly.

  • Jon Ingram

    Seriously, stop calling people who don’t like this camera “whiners”, criers, etc.. People who are heavily invested in the Nikon system have a vested interest in seeing the company make good business decisions, ie. releasing high quality, innovative products at a reasonable price-point with good QC. The reason I complain about a camera like this is because I’m afraid to see Nikon making bad decisions, thus reducing the chance of them being able to innovate and create good products for me in the future. I would never complain about a highly-successful camera that doesn’t meet my needs. Nikon needs those cameras to make money so that they can make the high-end cameras that I want. I’m not confident this camera will be a success at this price point, mostly because of the sub-par AF. I hope I’m wrong. I also hope that Nikon will post reasonable prices for the cameras that I want in the future.

    • JohnMcClane

      What’s wrong with Nikon releasing this camera as a supplement to their existing lineup? They, themselves, do not even categorize this with the D4/D800/D610 so why should we? Frankly, I think we’re all making assumptions that this will flop and that Nikon isn’t going to make a high enough margin on this. But, how can we possibly assume we know more than Nikon about cameras? They’ve done the research and have decades of experience. I understand your concern and believe me, I get it… but let the business do business and let the photographer do photography :)

    • MrSkelter

      The reason for the push-back is that logic dictates that the people for whom this camera isn’t useful can immediately say so based on specs and price alone. They are now dominating the conversation. Those of us who may buy the camera, or who already have, aren’t as likely to weigh in. Thus we’re in an echo chamber of negativity (which is common online – try Dpreview for negativity everywhere bar the Leica forum. Leica users are happy people).

      If this is a high profit item that sell at a steady rate for a long time it can be a big win. It’s obviously high profit. The only question is will it appeal to its intended target? That appears to be people with a fondness for photography, deep pockets, and a dislike of menu-driven cameras.

      If you like your 600, 800 or 4 you’re not in that group.

      The Df is for new users, and the few of us who don’t think the current interface is ideal.

      The new users aren’t at Nikon Rumors. If Nikon expand the market a little it’ll be a huge win. I definitely see this body catching the eye of many buyers. My father – who was a shooter and loved Nikon – would absolutely have bought this body in his retirement over the other DSLR offerings. He calculated exposures in his head. Didn’t care about histograms, peaking or video. To him these dials were what a camera meant. Learning time for him on this body? Zero. He’d never use 80% of the functionality and wouldn’t care. He could shoot the hell out of it.

      More hip-replacement than hipster (as so many brilliant wits like to charge) but with more disposable income than most people here and a real, valid, customer.

      It could put a lot of profit in Nikon’s pockets.

      • Jeff Hunter

        While I’m not planning to buy one, I am curious to see how it sells in the market place. Maybe Nikon’s on to something. If it’s successful it will be seen as innovative, not from a technological viewpoint but from a marketing viewpoint.

  • Lamar Lamb

    Retracted.

    • broxibear

      Interesting that it sits just above the article “Roger Cicala gives Nikon D610 a clean bill of health”.
      I can’t find the article called “Nikon offers D600 owners free exchange for D610 after sensor issues” ?

      • http://www.rmjphotography.net/ RMJ

        I didn’t get free D5100 to replace my D5000 either…Same thing happened with D5200 and D5300 !!! How foolish I was to buy a camera from Nikon !

    • http://Flickr.com/inthemist InTheMist

      Interesting. I had a black box on the screen that has made me wonder.

      I wasn’t sure what you were talking about! My Adblocker was blocking it.

  • Thom Hogan

    Not surprising that the Df isn’t selling like the D800. Nikon themselves aren’t making as many, which seems to indicate that they didn’t expect it to.

    • Kartken

      In business timing is everything.
      Nikon should have released Df last year instead of D600.

    • MrSkelter

      How many are they making? Have you been told personally or is there some announcement I’ve missed? Are they going to be more limited than demand justifies?

      • Thom Hogan

        The number I heard from sources is the same number Bjorn Rorslett is reporting: 12,000 a month. If true, that’s a bit more than one-third what the height of the D800 production was, and about half the initial D800 production.

        Sendai isn’t really set up to do long-term, high-volume production. The one shift capacity is something like 35,000 units a month, I think. The could add more shifts, but I’ve not heard that they have. Sendai currently is the plant of record for the D4, D800, Df, and Coolpix A, all smaller volume cameras than the CX and DX lineups.

        • MrSkelter

          That’s interesting. Given what you’ve said, Nikon couldn’t have expected to be producing many more. Else why Sendai right?

        • JorPet

          Two questions.

          Any idea what the cost to Nikon is for manufacturing the D4 sensor? If it is what I would guess, then “under $2,000″ simply can’t happen.

          Second, is this designed simply to keep D4 sensor production at the optimum level? This would improve profit margins on the D4 while getting a certain return on this body as well.

          • Thom Hogan

            Best guess: US$300-350. And yes, one of the reasons would be to keep the sensor in production.

        • JorPet

          Two questions.

          Any idea what the cost to Nikon is for manufacturing the D4 sensor? If it is what I would guess, then “under $2,000″ simply can’t happen.

          Second, is this designed simply to keep D4 sensor production at the optimum level? This would improve profit margins on the D4 while getting a certain return on this body as well.

    • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

      This would be a dream camera for me were it not for the complete screwup in terms of ergonomics. When doing low-light events with backlights, stage lights, coloured lights – I’d appreciate the d4 sensor for such situations. That 2/3 stop advantage above ISO 1600 would be nice (in terms of dynamic range and colour depth more than actual noise levels).

      But under those conditions, my most used button on the d800 is exposure compensation. It’s placed exactly where it should be and the wheel on the back naturally falls under my thumb. I can change exposure compensation in a faction of a second as light changes – with the DF left-side fiddly EC button I can’t do that. Fuji gets it – the ec dial is right where it should be, under my thumb. Then I’m not sure if the DF has the same Auto-ISO settings as my d800. I don’t see an Auto option on the ISO dial. I have an on body shortcut for that now that comes in handy when switching between stage shots and group/people shots.

      And than there is that empty PASM dial. How long have we been asking Nikon for a better memory banks implementation (like on the prosumer d7xxx/d6xx bodies)? They could have fitted several U banks on that wheel.

      The more I think about it, the more disappointing this launch is – especially in light of just how little this camera needs to be a hit. U1, U2, etc. banks would make this camera truly “hybrid,” Fuji (and Nikon!) style EC wheel placement, lower price point and I would buy it. And I think I’m not alone with this train of thought :-/

      • Thom Hogan

        If you’re using exposure compensation that often, you really should be in manual exposure mode, I think. You get more direct control faster.

        My understanding is that it has Auto ISO, but the ISO dial then doesn’t function usefully, but I may be wrong. The correct thing to do would have been to have the ISO dial control the maximum ISO if you specify Auto ISO. Still haven’t gotten my hands on a camera long enough to ferret out all the nuances like this. There are a lot of these questions that will ultimately make/break the camera for some.

        • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

          Auto-ISO takes care of my shutter speed, so I only have to worry about 2 variables. One is aperture, but I don’t need to change it too often. With the 24-120mm zoom I’m usually at f/4-f/4.5 which works well for most shots. Using primes needs a bit more care, depending on the distance of your subject. So I only need a single variable to care about: exposure compensation. And where to focus of course. In low-light events with a lot of of backlight, stage light, etc. this is a the most comfortable way to shoot. I know that dialing in negative exposure compensation will lower my ISO while keeping my shutter speed where I need it. In practice, with Auto-ISO enabled, there is no difference between M and A. Except shutter speed won’t change with the focal length automatically like it does in A.

          • KnightPhoto

            Csaba I read your earlier post and thought we were clones ;-) That’s exactly what I’m doing, event with some flash, stage with varying amounts of negative EV, Auto-ISO humming in the background, and yep toss in the odd crowd shot. Just home from a shoot again. I tried manual years ago but it results in egregious errors when light changes, which of course it’s doing all the time. -EV is a great way to go and I know of others who do it too. I shoot the D4 and that sensor would be very good for what you do – it’s very forgiving of under and over exposures and ISO 6400. And I’m right there with wanting the U1-U2 dials ;-) Loved that on my ex-D7000, I think I counted one time if they eliminated scene, flash, Auto, and a few of the others they could easily have provided several more than the U1/U2. Dream camera – D4 with U1-U6!
            I do use manual when lighting is consistent but not for stage because it changes too much and like you say we need to concentrate on composition and focus.

            • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

              Glad to hear KnightPhoto – I suspect a lot of concert/low-light event shooters work this way :) I also do people shots if requested, and in really low light I gotta use flash. That’s where U modes would come in really handy. Now I have to do 5 things to change from “stage mode” to people mode (change from A to M, dial back EC to 0, change shutter speed, change to Auto-ISO off, adjust ISO, set aperture.) With U1, U2, etc it would take a single flick. I’m baffled why Nikon doesn’t do this – I don’t know a single person who prefers the complicated shooting banks options :-/

            • KnightPhoto

              Agree totally. When i read your first post, I had to double check that it wasn’t one I wrote myself! U1 low-light concert, -2 EV, Aperture f/2.8, Auto-ISO 1600-6400, SS 1/320 – boom, U2 – Flash setup, portrait picture control, etc. etc. – boom. U3-U6 and boom boom boom.

              I really liked that the U-settings also memorize any EV compensation. shooting mode, etc. they are much more inclusive than the setting banks. All Nikon cameras should revert to U-capability.

            • http://z7photo.com/ Csaba

              Agreed completely – so baffling that after 3+ years implementing this on the d7000, Nikon still refuses to do this :-/

    • robert

      Im surprised you say that. with all the hype and videos, I thought they were expecting this thing to be a huge hit.

      maybe it was a setup to push people to buy the d800.

      but the amount of positive feedback was huge and the amount who would have bought would be huge as well.

      you know how it is. a new product thats bought in numbers has an influence on others as well with the “I dont know what the hype is about, but I want one also” when you see tons of people buying it you want one also, whether you want/need it or not.

  • Nikon fan

    Oh well I am back (the disappointed nikon fan) I see that the crowed in this forum as shifted again from “oh I love this camera” to well “it’s too expensive”
    The issue my friends is product when the product sucks people look at what else is wrong, price, shape and what have you…
    Nikon does not get and does not look it will change course unless investors pull out.

    To nikon: Make good mirrorless cameras not nikon1 “a peace of junk if you ask me” and many consumers. Make mirrorless with 1.5 crop sensors or even fullframe and you will keep your seat with the big boys.

    Warning to nikon: if you continue the course of selling bulky cameras with less features “video” well you know what will happen.

    See I care about you nikon I own many cameras and lenses all we want is to be able to use our good nikon lenses with top of the line bodies, small and packed with features.

    • BLight

      You want a mirrorless, buy a mirrorless (say, a Sony?).
      You dont want bulk, dont buy bulk (buy, for instance, a Fuji).
      You want a video camera, buy a GoPro for all I care.
      I dont like mirrorless (maybe I will one day when technology advances).
      I dont want a small camera (I like the ergonomics of larger cameras. Am I allowed to?)
      I dont shoot video (I couldn’t care less if Df has video or not)
      Some people like sushi, other like pizza. Does it really pay off to put one against the other argueing why one is better than the other? it’s just nonesense.

  • Orfeu

    The price….The fact that it’s still a DSLR…And finally the timing…This camera is beautiful and the concept behind it is fantastic, unfortunately it comes into the market a bit too late. It’s not a D800, not a D4 and maybe more than a D610? What the F is this camera trying to be?
    The Pure Photography videos show a guy walking about with a Df and a 50mm. Simple and versatile…In theory, that is… The Fuji X package does laps around the Df particularly in terms of versatility and “pure photography”. And to top that, unlike Nikon or Canon, Fuji is loyal enough to their customer base that their cameras actually get better over time with firmware updates! Heck the X100 is not even in production anymore and they released a firmware update to that thing that makes it feel like a new camera!

    It saddens me to say this but Don’t F’ing waste your money just to buy into Nikon’s desperate move to keep things retro and you hooked into the Fx mount family and DSLR clunkiness. As always time will tell. My bet is that in the long run the Nikon Df will be seen as a desperate marketing strategy and epic fail.

  • ALEXX

    DF??? DF??? … NIKON on Crack???? Or on a financial suicide-Trip??? … !!!!! FINALLY: I am getting the idea! With the cold war design (Korean War Surplus Bodies???), Overpricement ( =Less resolution for more bucks….) there is ONLY ONE POSSIBLE SOLUTION- Nikon is fishing for new customer groups in North Korea…. The only thing MISSING is the solid gold special edition personally signed by KIM JONG UN…. It’s life Jim – but not as we know it ;P :O :D….

    • k

      Expression level: teenager.
      Credibility: zero.

  • zeissomaniac

    I am happy for retro lovers with deep pockets. However, I am waiting for Nikon to relase a 48 MP “D900″ with 4K video and an awsome viewfinder so I can enjoy my 21mm Zeiss Distagon ZF2 to the fullest. How long do I have to wait for?

  • Bill

    Many years ago Nikon came out with the D3 which was the first real Canon competitor, at the time besting the Canon 1D Mark III, but all the rave was over Canon releasing a 3D. Nobody thought less than a year later Nikon would introduce the D700 which basically duplicated the D3 in a cheaper form. Professional photographers united and many jumped on the D700 buss, and many (including myself) decided to switch from Canon to Nikon because of the D700.

    Now, a few years later, Nikon apparently saw the error of it’s ways and simply refuses to offer a “cheaper” version of the D4. Many don’t want to deal with uber megapixels of the D800 and the D600/610 is lacking in several areas, most specifically in a fast shutter. Apparently Nikon thinks these bodies are meant for the advanced amateur who simply doesn’t need a fast shutter? I am not sure what their thinking is but I believe it is way off.

    Now enter the Df, they had their chance to build a retro style DSLR that could slay the market, but once again their ignorant engineers decided to remove some key features… “let’s take out the fast shutter and also remove video”. What the heck Nikon? I would have been all over the Df if it had 1/8000 and video. You guys are seriously shooting yourselves in the foot with some of your latest offerings. Even the D7100 has the CAM3500 51 point AF and 1/8000 and video????

    • Cuculain

      I think it´s rather the fault of ignorant controlers and managers.
      I bet the engineers would have have built something more coherent…

  • Cuculain

    Beautiful Camera! You can feel and see how much love they put into it.

    I`ll definitly by the next version of the Df.

    Please stick to the concept! And listen to your customers ;-)

  • Sam

    re: Nikon Df demand not as strong as D800

    Great! maybe the price will drop sooner. There are a few things I like about this camera on paper:
    - the D4 16mp sensor
    - no video (can have smaller battery, etc.)
    manual controls.
    - I have my old Nikkors

    Don’t like:
    - price
    - design a little too busy visually, and wedding cake of knobs etc. – of course this is not a critical issue, it’s just a design issue, but I’m very interested in industrial design/ergonomics/form vs function in all items that we interact with. Leica was able to keep the M (240) fairly simple although it has manual controls. Perhaps a look towards that ethos would have helped.

    Looking forward to handling the camera.
    (long time Leica M & Nikon F user)
    thx Sam

  • coyote

    too big, too expensive, only 39 focusing sensors (unlike my D800′s wide 51), no vid (which i need for work)… mah

    • mikeswitz

      Then don’t effin buy it! It wasn’t meant for you!

      • coyote

        zactly mikeswitz (but there’s no need to get pissed at me, buddy). i just find it saddening. i’ve been a nikon Pro for almost 50 years and have owned endless numbers of bodies since the 60′s. i really really looked forward to this concept being produced since my first D body. just wish it was more like i what imagined it would be…

        • mikeswitz

          Didn’t mean to sound pissed. I think it was actually meant for someone like me but just didn’t go far enough(no split screen focusing, one card slot) so I’m just not buying it….yet.

          • robert

            Shits, I told you. quarterly revenue is going to be crap. you didnt believe me.

            overpriced df by a grand and the plastic 50 1.4 for $1800. youre just blind to see the real picture.

            I tell it like it is.

          • coyote

            then we agree. its a great concept (i loved all my meterless-finder F, meterless F2 and FM models). even used them for my “art” photography while i was using my F4 and later F5 for work. i’m just disappointed with this variation. if we’re lucky, maybe we’ll both get our wish with the “new and improved Df2″.

            • mikeswitz

              that’s what I’m hoping. for now I’m sticking with my X Pro1 and hope nobody moves.

          • Degsy

            The omission of the split screen was a huge mistake

  • Yirmin

    No shock. They made a camera for a small niche of the market. The mass market still demands video in a dslr. This one appears to be aimed at the photo snobs, as if Nikon thinks they can become a Leica selling a more expensive camera with less features.

    If they wanted to make a statement they should have put a global shutter on one of their dslr camera for the video crowd. Doesn’t matter whether most could even tell the difference between a video with it or without, it would have created better buzz than simply creating a Frankenstein monster from some leftover FM2 parts.

  • Jimmy_Blue

    It’s a $699 camera at best and they want $2799 ? are they crazy?

    • Integral Moments

      come on don’t exaggerate, this is a high quality DSLR and deserve more than you said, but not $2800, it should be around $2200 at best including the 50mm lens

    • FuelDoor

      No , You’re crazy thinking its a $699 camera.

  • Guest

    Nikon needs to get over the fact that they are not Apple. They need to give customers what they want, not tell them what they want.

    • FuelDoor

      Apple giving customers what they want.. lol

    • T53

      During the Jobs era at Apple, his knack was giving customers something they did not know they wanted and he was wildly successful at it.

  • twoomy

    I’ll agree with many of the other comments. The Df looks like a fine camera, but it is expensive and for something that appears to be a good landscaping camera (i.e. lighter, smaller, manual controls), I’d rather have the D800 sensor in that body. This camera seems to be geered at hipsters who want to look cool when they shoot a wedding. :)

    I have nothing against this camera, but I’m not going to buy it. As a happy D800 owner, all I could ask in a replacement is that it be significantly smaller and lighter which would mean mirrorless. I’d be more apt to look at the Sony A7r (if there is a good wide-angle lens for it in the next year or so).

    • FuelDoor

      “This camera seems to be geered at hipsters who want to look cool when they shoot a wedding. ”

      That’s such a dumb statement. Anyways I’m also a happy D800 owner. And I’m glad they used a D4 sensor instead of a D800 Sensor.

      • JorPet

        Totally agree. I already have a D800, if this had the same sensor I wouldn’t even consider it. To get the D4 sensor and in a smaller lighter package is what makes me interested.

    • okay

      ..or it’s geared for someone who wants a high native iso with less mp for processing raw files and in a smaller body for ease of use with the smaller mf lenses.

      What is the deal with everyone not understanding this camera- it’s not that hard of a concept. It’s not a d800- get over it.

  • Brian

    Hopefully they will drop the price now to around $1,800… I don’t care what you die hard Nikon fan boys say…$2,700 is way over priced. Its a nice looking camera though.

    • Aldo

      Funny thing is that if this camera had been introduced at 2500 bucks.. I don’t think many would have complained (thats only roughly 200 less). At 2.5k intro price, it would have easily plateau at 2200… Which is where I see this camera realistically.

  • NV

    People love to argue for the sake of arguing. Df looks amazing and has
    great specs. No video, so what? It really comes down to your personal or
    professional requirements. Df is all about photography and retro
    philosophy. If you need something else just go and buy it. For much less! But if you have the money and if you like the solid concept, go ahead and get one. Besides the price and lack of video/flash I see absolutely no reason for such discussions. I presume it’s just an excuse for those who can’t afford it, myself included. But I might be saving to get one. This little thing is astonishing. But that’s me!

    • Aldo

      Not having a split focusing screen renders this “retro” sale point as pure hypocrisy. You may be right when you say we are justifying not buying this camera (not so much because we can’t afford it), but because we know the current price point is too steep for what it is.

      • Alistair Maitland

        Agreed. This cam IS good. But forget that price.

  • john ouyoung

    Only older people wanting to play out their younger year fantasies would buy this or retro freak people.

    • Aldo

      I’m not that old and I have owned/worked with a few classic mechanical slr’s… and not as a toy (meaning I worked in pure film). This camera certainly brings some memories of those cameras that saw me get into photography… and it has an appeal that makes me want it… but put that aside I see no reason to buy it at this price.

      • Celtic

        Me too. I ordered it, but practicality won out and I cancelled. Can’t pay that price for a hybrid.

    • FuelDoor

      really? I want to buy it and I’m neither.

      • Tom Manchin

        You must be part of the 20% then. Nothing is 100% except for death.

  • Premium Economy

    UK Price £2749 = $4222. Or put it another way I can buy a D800 and a Fuji 100s at this price. So whilst it appears to be a fine camera and worthy of consideration it is way overpriced at this stage. Hopefully price will drop as we move into the new year.

  • http://loewald.com/ Tonio Loewald

    I think if the Df had better fps than the D610 (7fps say), 1/8000s shutter speed, Nikon’s best AF system (i.e. the one in the D7100 for goodness sakes), and some kind of enhanced support for manual focus—then it might have a shot. But you can’t even claim it’s a “pure photography” device when it’s compromised as a still camera — this is aside from arguments about D800 vs. D4 sensor, missing video. Anyone who buys retro bodies has already switched to Olympus or Fuji.

  • Dpablo unfiltered

    This is not news to Nikon. It is probably news to some of you who have had only a short time to contemplate the camera.

  • Philipp

    very non-exciting cam.

    No split screen
    No video
    No compatible pro-energy
    No Non-AI-coupling

    not my cam

  • broxibear

    Nikon has defended the UK price of the Df .

    “Asked to explain the price differential, Nikon UK’s general manager John Walshe told Amateur Photographer:
    ‘Many factors influence the final price of products in the UK – this
    includes but is not limited to tax, tariff, exchange rates and
    logistics.”

    “its important to note that Nikon RRPs are non-binding guidelines, and
    market dynamics will determine the actual price set by retailers.”

    Full article at http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk/photo-news/540193/nikon-defends-uk-price-of-new-df-dslr#S5EuOFFUlsqGm14C.99

  • r_o_b_s_o_n

    is this some sort of surprise? shouldn’t be… even if no one was complaining about anything… it’s simply not meant to be a camera for the masses… people also need to get over the fact that it doesn’t have a “high pixel count” (remember when the D3 came out, at 12 mpx and people were gaga over it) nor does it do 8fps… it’s not a sports camera people! the FM2 w/ MD-12 did 3.2 fps and that it also doesn’t offer video… THE CAMERA IS MEANT TO BE A BACK TO THE BASICS CAMERA!! the only short coming I see with the camera is the lock of provision of a split image focusing screen…

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