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Weekly Nikon news flash #245

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Phottix-Odin-TTL-Nikon-flash-trigger
→ Phottix released firmware update v1.06 for the Odin TTL trigger.

Tokina-11-16mm-f2.8-lens
→Price drop: the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens now sells for $449 (limited time offer).

Nikon-EN-EL14a-batteryNikon-EN-EL14-battery-alternative
→ NikonHacker released an unofficial beta firmware update for D3100, D3200 and D5100 cameras that will allow the use of third party batteries (with the latest official firmware update Nikon killed third party battery compatibility few weeks ago):

→ Best selling DSLR cameras in Japan for 2013 according to BCNRanking:

Best-selling-DSLR-cameras-in-Japan-2013

→ Kai reviews the Nikon Df:

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  • http://kyleclements.com/ Kyle Clements

    Killing 3rd party battery support is nothing but a dick move on Nikon’s part. It’s like disabling 3rd party lens support.

    They are literally investing time and resources into making their product worse for their customers.

    • delayedflight

      Quit being such a tight arse you already spent a heap of money on your DSLR so 80 bucks is just a drop in the bucket.

      Anyway I understand Nikon’s way of thinking if it can keep people buying their own accessories it means more money in the kitty instead of it going to 3rd party makers.

      • Spy Black

        What planet are you from? If you haven’t checked lately, third-party companies are making better lenses than Nikon. And Canon. So 80 bucks is just a drop in the bucket? Seems you can spare the change, we’ll take it.

        • neversink

          Outside of Zeiss, no one is making better lenses than Nikon or Canon. sigma is always hit and mis and their QC is below par. For a spy, you certainly have been handed the wrong info. Perhaps you are a counter-spy!? ;-)
          PS. You gets what you pays for….

          • SunkenShip

            Some of Sigma’s recent releases have been stunning. Their 35/1.4 makes the Nikon look like grossly overpriced nonsense. Which it is.
            The Sigma old 300-800mm is sharp and stands comparison with my 600VR very well.
            But yes, the lenses Cosina maje for Zeiss are great optically, if limited in their abilities.

            • AM

              All Sigma glass is good…. while it works.
              As neversink said, buying Sigma is a toss-up. It’s really hard to tell at this moment if the new releases will stand the test of time. Unfortunately for Sigma, there is some bad reputation already on them that will be hard to overcome.

            • SunkenShip

              Yes Sigma have made some utter crap (performance and/or reliability) along with some gems. (The 180/2.8 macro is another in the latter category.)
              Sigma does seem to be getting it’s act together though. Nikon on the other hand has lost the plot.
              It’s hard to tell with Nikon what issues there will be right out of the box now! Nikon’s reputation just keeps on sliding.

          • Spy Black

            “…no one is making better lenses than Nikon or Canon.”
            So you’re on the same planet as reporteratlarge I see…

      • reporteratlarge

        Well, if $80 is no big deal to you then send it to my Paypal account right now.

        • orpickaname

          Send some love to my account as well!

      • Marty

        My V1 demolishes original Nikon batteries through a firmware defect that is well established but not acknowledged by Nikon. The Patona batteries I got for one third of the price do fine however. This has nothing to do with money. It’s just that third party ‘crap’ simply works where Nikon’s does not. I stopped updating camera firmware a long time ago.

        • neversink

          It may be true on Nikon 1 series cameras, but not on DSLRs.

        • groucher

          Your v1 might be faulty – mine has no such problem. “Well established” by whom?

        • KnightPhoto

          That is a strange V1 battery problem, I have seen others report it too including Thom. I stay vigilant about it because of this, but all my EN-EL15′s are still at top #1 quality. I do update all my firmware.

      • JXVo

        I agree with Kyle – the time and money spent on actively trying to damage the aftermarket should rather be used by Nikon to improve their products so that aftermarket looks less attractive.
        I understand some very cheap aftermarket batteries might actually have caused camera problems – but they did it to lenses too. Some of the Sigma lenses are better than Nikon’s own product (e.g. the widely acclaimed 35mm f1.4) but the cheaper aftermarket lenses also make photography more accessible to large numbers of entry level DSLR buyers – who are still buying Nikon bodies on which to use those lenses

        • umeshrw

          Not to ridicule you guys or anything but can anyone name atleast two more sigma lenses (besides 35-1.4) which are really good? (I am putting this query because everyone seems to bandy about that lens as an example and no other.

          • creamy

            Sigma teles do produce really good images, e.g. the 105/150/180 APO Macro and the 120-300 APO. The 35/1.4 isn’t that appealing to me. Yes it’s very sharp, but its OOF often appear harsh.

            • http://kyleclements.com/ Kyle Clements

              I’m glad I’m not the only one who isn’t impressed with the Sigma 35mm 1.4. I tried it, images just look flat and lifeless to me. Technically good, but boring.

              “Technically good” just isn’t the whole story.

              I am a huge fan of Tokina lenses, their imperfections add a really nice character to my shots; they produce really nice, strong lens flare, and the coma is strong, but very pleasing. They are also built tough enough to use as a weapon. Their 28-80mm f/2.8 is my secret weapon for shooting rock shows. I wish they were a bigger company and released more stuff.

      • Mansgame

        Cameras already come with a battery from Nikon (at least for now) so most people already have their “good” battery. Often times, they only need a backup for an emergency if they’re traveling or doing a long shoot and a cheap $20 battery will be just enough to finish the shoot or buy them time to charge their other battery. For something that they may never ever use, it’s a reasonable choice to make. Nikon is taking that choice away.

        My sister in law has an HP laptop that was out of warranty and the battery had died. She could have spent another $140 on an HP battery for a 4 year old laptop or $35 on a third party which would buy another year or two of use. She made the choice to go with the cheaper one.

        It’s a dick move by Nikon no matter how you try to justify it.

      • http://www.davidkasman.com/ David Kasman

        It is shortsighted on Nikon’s part. We will start to wonder if alternate brands of accessories will work with future Nikon bodies. Not allowing flexibility, in terms of mixing and matching accessories (batteries, lenses, flashes, etc), will be a strike against Nikon bodies when considering a new camera. Imagine if Nikon bodies only accepted Nikon branded memory cards! Nobody wants to feel stuck with limited and expensive accessory options.

        • http://kyleclements.com/ Kyle Clements

          “Imagine if Nikon bodies only accepted Nikon branded memory cards!”

          That is precisely why I’ve avoided any of Sony’s photo/video offerings.
          Memory Stick Duo? No thanks…I’ll take something that uses CF or SD.

        • Jer

          Very well put. It seems to me from this and other Nikon moves that it would benefit Nikon to have some management overhauls.

    • neversink

      Ever use tried party batteries…. The charge doesn’t last as long nor does the battery life…

      • AM

        I have two 3rd-party batteries that the vendor threw in for free when I bought my D7000 and then when I bought my D600 (good that they use the same battery). From my experience, I really can’t tell when I’m using the OEM or the 3rd-party. YMMV.
        Even if their charge didn’t last as long, for free, I wouldn’t hesitate to use them if I had to.

        • neversink

          Perhaps I am wrong. Maybe I had a bad battery or a bad brand…

    • Juan Lopez

      Dont buy Nikon products so.

      • umeshrw

        Sadly that is what I advise freshers. I cannot do that myself as I am heavily invested in nikon.

        • orpickaname

          hehe for a moment I was reading that as “heavily infested” :P

        • John Baxter Photography

          So you advise them to buy what?

    • Juan Lopez

      Dont buy Nikon products so.

  • Eric

    BH’s reduced price is for the Tokina 11-16mm Mark I. The lens in the picture above is the Tokina mark II, which Im trying to sell mine. You just scared me out lol.

    • Brent

      How much are you looking to get for it.

    • http://nikonrumors.com/ Nikon Rumors

      I uploaded the correct image.

  • AnthonyH

    What’s surprising is how high the Canon 6D is on the charts. The Nikon 610 isn’t even a blip, even though by most measures it’s a better camera. I wonder if this reflects a general satisfaction with the Nikon APS lineup, with little pressure to upgrade to a 35mm-sized frame camera.

    • Mansgame

      Sad part is that the D600 could have been as beloved and high selling as the D80 and later the D90 were. There was so much excitement around it despite the lack of more pro features and the higher than expected price. Nikon just absolutely killed any excitement and good will by A. having the issue and B. not correcting it.

    • AM

      It doesn’t have anything to do with satisfaction but price. I bet that most of the APS-C camera owners don’t know the difference between APS-C and FF other than the price.

      • AnthonyH

        You’re probably right about the price part. The 5D series really isn’t that affordable, and the 6D is probably the first affordable FF for Canon. Nikon folks have had the marvelous D700 available for quite some time, which continues to satisfy a lot of people, even in the used market. No doubt the oil on sensor debacle for the D600 also hurt Nikon’s standing.

    • Watashi wa Alvin desu

      The 6D has been around a lot longer than the D610. I wonder what the percentage would be if you added together the D600 and D610. If the D610 just missed the list with around 1%, their combined total would be 2.3%. Still short of the 6D’s 3.4% but a bit closer. In any case, I hope your comment regarding satisfaction with Nikon APS-C cameras is correct.

    • http://inthemistphoto.com/ InTheMist

      Check out how high the 7D is! (Closest equivalent to the D300s) – it’s over four years old now!
      D7000 still selling well too. Nikon needs to pay attention to high-end DX.

      No D610 because they were announced later in 2013.

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

        Yeah, exactly. D400 would sell heaps.

      • Juan Lopez

        Dont waste your time. Nikon never will make the D400.

      • Juan Lopez

        Dont waste your time. Nikon never will make the D400.

    • neversink

      6D was out longer….

    • Neopulse

      Usually it’s because of glass that one owns that they decide not to switch over even though it’s greener on the other side.

      • AnthonyH

        Excellent point! But it also shows that Nikon is failing at the opportunity to get people to switch, even with a better camera. APS glass doesn’t cover the whole sensor, and since people are going to have to update their glass anyway, it’s the perfect opportunity to switch systems or convince people to switch systems. Nikon’s D600 and D610 were both better cameras on paper, so it’s not the cameras. It could be the glass, but I lean towards the marketing. What if Nikon through in a 50 mm f/1.8 lens that normally sells for $100? That kind of pot sweetener/incentive might get people to jump ship and encouraging system switches should be part of the strategy.

  • Watashi wa Alvin desu

    I don’t really care about the Df but Kai is a dork. I’ve never understood the point of any of his comments. Given his English accent, perhaps he’s watched too many episodes of Benny Hill.

    • http://www.omarbarcenas.com/ Omar Barcenas

      He at least makes reviews funny to watch. It’s not scientific but at least his opinions make sense. The Df is trying to be something it’s not. Nikon is too chicken to put something out that might take away from their D4 sales (ala D700 and D3) so now everything you see from Nikon is made so that there’s always a compromise.

      • Watashi wa Alvin desu

        So, does he at least make reviews funny to watch or at least make sense? Do you think about what you write or just throw in “at least” for good measure?
        Every camera is a compromise. If one were made without compromises, nobody could afford it. Wait a minute… affordable vs. every possible feature. Damn. Another compromise!

        • http://www.omarbarcenas.com/ Omar Barcenas

          ummm I said he makes reviews funny to watch.. it’s pretty clear what I said.

          The D700 and all cameras previous to this generation of cameras had less compromises. Nikon is dividing up each market segment at each price point. Before this era you got a bang for your buck.

          So in your original post you say you don’t even like the Df but now your saying that the Df fills a niche in the market?

          Have you ever used a FM2?

        • Mansgame

          D700 vs. D3 was a compromise but done right. It was simple. You could have the best sensor either way but it was clear whether you needed the D3 or not. Now if you want the D4 sensor, it’s either Df, a toy camera or a $6000 camera.

        • Photo-Jack

          Cameras, especially in the recent past, are probably neither compromised by technology nor plain cost arguments but by the marketing department. Think of what Nikon has put into the last 5xxxx.
          For a development time of 4 years one could have expect a really more thought through Df design: e.g. interchange PSAM and correction dial and put the hooks for the strap better etc.
          As far as more cost intensive things are concerned, one get the high ISO D4 sensor but not a meter that’s good for low light, one get’s all preparation for the use of the old MF lenses, but then no split screen for manual focussing.
          IMHO these features wouldn’t have canibalized the D4 sales but the lack of them canibalize the reputation of Nikon.
          A 100€ surcharge for a silver ring on the 1.8/50, which we are forced in Europe to take with the Df is just a rip off. But I’d happily paid the 3000€ without this lens if the camera wasn’t crippled.

          Still Nikon has the best cameras available. But once that turns around you’ll see quite some people jump boat. I’m a convinced Nikon user but Nikon’n stubbornness in some concerns, let me raise the eyebrows more and more often.
          I like the times back, when Nikon purued the possible and not was just a Canon-chaser.

      • AnthonyH

        Your comment makes no sense, as the D4 is already hard to purchase and is in limited supply. Most likely, the production run is complete and existing inventory low, so there is nothing to cannabalize.

        • BernhardAS

          Then it makes even less sense for a dumbed down version

          • AnthonyH

            Exactly. The kind of people who would spend the money on a D4 need certain high end features. Even if a lower priced camera added them, it still wouldn’t be the same camera. Typical complaint – I want a D4 but I want it priced like a D3200. LOL. I wonder what he means by trying to be something it’s not? It is exactly what Nikon intended, a retro boutique camera.

      • MyrddinWilt

        The Df is aimed at a different market that you aren’t in it would seem.

        The target market looks to be the type of people who buy $5000 watches. It is quite a big market

    • groucher

      His Df review is absolutely spot on. Hope Nikon is listening,

      • Watashi wa Alvin desu

        I would agree with you but then we’d both be wrong. And why do you care if Nikon is listening? So they’ll discontinue manufacturing a camera that is selling well? How exactly is this camera hurting you? Are you also bothered that Chevrolet makes the Volt? Have you considered counseling for this obsession? There’s nothing wrong with admitting to having OCD.
        I, myself, have CDO. It’s just like OCD except the letters are in alphabetical order…as they should be. :-)

        • http://www.omarbarcenas.com/ Omar Barcenas

          hmmm for someone that ‘doesn’t care about Df’ your really sensitive to someone criticizing the camera. I smell a fan boy. And grow some balls and stop posting anonymously.

          • Mansgame

            He and that Ronan guy are always here carrying water for Nikon.

            • Watashi wa Alvin desu

              I carry water for my fellow man. I don’t give a damn about Nikon. The only reason I’m so harsh on some of the posters here is in an attempt to improve their ability to apply logic to the matters around them. While you shouldn’t be a slave to your mind, having a better one gives you options that would otherwise be unavailable.

          • fjfjjj

            Wise words from the great Omar Barcenas!

      • I AM DEAF

        Nikon listening??
        Not a chance.

        • MyrddinWilt

          Oh they listen intently

          They just don’t care

          This blog isn’t their core market, never has been. Nikon will continue to design the goods the way they think is best.

          If you want to influence them, ask for capabilities, not random specs that they understand and the readers of this blog dont

      • george allen

        I personally thought his review was way too one sided. Yes you can hate something as a reviewer but should still try and balance things out. All the haters will jump to his review as evidence to back up their hate. Don’t really see the point? Don’t like it, don’t buy it.

        • Michael Laing

          Why should he balance out what he was saying? He isn’t a fan of the camera and he said so, putting on rose tinted spectacles makes a review pointless.

          As for haters jumping onto the review, the big insult in that is basically saying people who don’t like the Df are ‘haters’ (which is generally seen as a negative term). You can have a negative opinion and not be a ‘hater’. There are many valid reasons to be negative about the Df, it isn’t a bad camera just not a great camera, which people were hoping for, that’s not really hating, I would say more underwhelming.

          The point is that Nikon had the opportunity to make a really special camera and if you saw the initial reaction to hearing that Nikon was going to make a retro camera, it was overwhelmingly supportive. It was only when the specs were announced and people saw what the body looked like, that people voiced their negativity. People had high expectations and the Df really didn’t live up to them, particularly for the price. Maybe we have got to the point where people shouldn’t have high expectations from Nikon and should expect mediocrity from their cameras.

      • Rafa R

        At least I know some Nikon reps in my country do read Nikon Rumors, so in a way they listen, trust me.

        • orpickaname

          Trust me, that wouldn’t matter to the ears that matter.

          • Rafa R

            probably true .. :)

    • Mansgame

      Seemed like a very honest review to me. Who would I trust? The guys who work at BH, Adorama, and other “camera stores” who are trying to sell the camera or a guy who doesn’t care whether you buy it or not?

      He made some valid points that the hype and actual camera don’t match.

      • Watashi wa Alvin desu

        Kai doesn’t care what you buy but he does care about gaining viewers and therefore, advertisers. His goofy antics and ridiculous reviews pay well with the average internet junkie and therefore achieve his purpose.

        • Watashi wa Alvin desu

          Sorry. meant to type, “play well.” Damn tiny keyboard…

        • Mansgame

          I think people would have watched him just the same if his wacky review was deservingly positive.

  • http://inthemistphoto.com/ InTheMist

    Surprising that the top Pentax (Ricoh) outsells the top Sony.

    Here in Switzerland, I see a ton of Sony.

  • Brent Busch

    I think their MP figures are off by quite a bit! 1800 million pixels?

    • orpickaname

      Gigapixels, baby!

  • Stripes

    Well done those hackers!
    I don’t use 3rd party batteries, but I’m always delighted to see Nikon’s nasty policies get skunked.

  • Kynikos

    Nice work by NikonHacker!

    It’s great whenever the Good Guys win a round.

  • george allen

    Has any one thought that the firmware update code was done testing Nikon batteries and they just didn’t know it would affect third party batteries? They must have changed quite a few things to get more battery life. I’m not a coder but I am guessing tests must be made by the camera on the battery to ensure it has enough juice, if these tests fail with another battery type then it wouldn’t work. Would you really create more code just to ensure third party batteries work?

    • Thom Hogan

      I’m sure you’re right. But that also shows just how disconnected Nikon is from those that are using their products.

      • fjfjjj

        Why are you sure? It seems like a common enough tactic, and companies usually get away with it, for a time.

    • MyrddinWilt

      It is almost certainly deliberate. It is actually quite a bit of effort to make a battery look different.

    • http://www.davidkasman.com/ David Kasman

      It is no accident, it is quite deliberate.

  • neversink

    Yes, Fuji makes some wonderful lenses, but they don’t really make DSLR lenses. Of course old Leica lenses for the M are also incredible as were the Mamiya lenses for both the RZPro and the Mamiya 7ii, both medium format lenses.

  • Spy Black

    Can’t you just load a previous firmware back into the camera? Isn’t there an option to back up the previous firmware when you load a new one? And really, unless your REALLY needed the firmware update for some reason, I think it’s a stupid move to blindly update any firmware, or even software updates. Don’t fix what ain’t broke.

  • http://www.omarbarcenas.com/ Omar Barcenas

    Just look up my name and contact me on that email. There’s only one Omar Barcenas that does photography.

    And posting your name so that everyone can see your reputation is a good way to see if it’s even worth replying, but I’m guessing it’s a waste of time seeing as you like to hide behind screen names.

    Sorry for the late reply, I’ve been out shooting, instead of pixel peeping on my cats ball sack. BTW the Fuji XT1 looks so much better than the Df (cause I know you’re not really a fan of the Df hey).

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