I spent the last month in Costa Rica field testing the Nikon D5 in comparison to the D4S, which I have shot with extensively since its release. Below I have listed are what I consider to be the top 10 new features of the D5. The most impressive update is the addition of 4K UHD video. To demonstrate this below you will also find a real world highlight reel of 4K video I shot of wildlife native to the jungles of Costa Rica.
Nikon D5 - Costa Rica in 4K:
1. Touch Screen LCD: This is the highest resolution LCD I have ever seen on a dslr camera and it reminds me of the retina screen on my 15 inch Macbook Pro. It is significantly easier to tell if an image is sharp on this LCD. Being able to tap or pinch to zoom, and scrub quickly through images using touch is a welcomed improvement.
2. Additional Fn3 Function Button: I use this button to rate images in the field which speeds up my image review and post processing workflow. You can assign a star rating of 1-5.
3. Dual XQD Slots: Both my D5 and D500 now shoot to XQD. My 64GB G Series cards unload at a remarkable rate. This increases my productivity and equals less time staring at my computer waiting for images to transfer.
4. New ISO Button: The newly positioned ISO button allows me to switch ISO with one hand making manual shooting much easier. Tip: on the D4S you can assign the movie record button to accomplish the same task.
5. 4K Time-lapse Photography: For projects on a deadline and for quick social media posting I can now shoot 4k time-lapse that is merged in camera. This also saves time in post. The downside is that in contrast to using the interval timer you won’t be able to keep the RAW images.
6. Focus Tracking with Lock-on: Nikon has added additional options here for erratic or steady subjects allowing me to fine tune my autofocus for every given situation.
7. Smooth Video Exposure Compensation: By customizing the Pv and Fn1 button to act as positive and negative exposure compensation +/- I can use the buttons to smoothly adjust the exposure of a scene by adjusting the ISO. This allows for smooth exposure changes mid clip when the lighting changes.
8. Improved Internal Microphone: The built in mic on this camera is better than on any other dslr I have ever used. And although I still recommend capturing audio with a Rhode Video Mic Pro the quality of the built in audio capture was surprisingly good!
9. 4k Video Image Capture: I can now take 8mp stills while shooting 4k video or extract them frame by frame after the fact.
10. Added Resolution: the new 20.8mp sensor offers a noticeable jump in resolution. This is important in wildlife photography because we tend to do a lot of cropping.
Overall I am extremely happy with Nikon's latest flagship and looking forward to capturing higher quality still images and 4k video footage on my wildlife adventures.