Great thoughts on this thread, especially the "screw the video". But, as noted, this is really not something which takes any space.
I have nearly no need for video, though admittedly the feature is nice in a pinch. That said, I would want none of the "video" options taking up valuable button/dial/lever space. I'd be OK with a mode dial having a video setting, but I don't want to waste one inch of space on the body for it. The video button on the D4 and D800 is unwanted from my perspective, and I would not want to see this on a digital FG or F3.
So, why does not NIKON make a camera like this? My guess is that marketing says, OK, it costs us $3.7 million to develop a new camera. We must sell 300,000 making $123 per unit to break even. The retail of the camera will be about $1995 to obtain the profit. Market sampling suggests about 50,000 people might buy this. NIKON shows loss of $2.45 Million... decides not to develop the NIKON FG-D.......and it goes downhill from there......
I mostly agree, the market would be pretty tiny. Maybe Nikon will use the sales of the Fuji X-Pro1 to gauge that. The fact that the X-Pro1 sells at all says there is *some* market for these high-end, well built niche cameras.
I am wondering, if we are to look at what we really want in a camera, the maximum performance capabilities , what we would design. For me, I actually believe I do not know what I need. This may sound a bit crazy, not a problem, but the technology is so vast, that I cannot even begin to understand the potential of a camera's design. So, being blessed to have a D4 in hand, and I truly feel blessed to be able to use this, I find it has more than I can use. Slowly, I am gathering knowledge on tis potential and attempting to use this. But, I am wondering if a lot of the other new NIKONs might also have some really super abilities and will fill the needs of the folks who would like a digital FG. And, who knows, maybe there is a digital back for the FG...... didn't someone do this for the F at one point or am I dreaming?
Personally, I know what I want. I want a simple to use, well built, featureless, camera with the best image quality possible.
I shot film years ago, and recently got back into it as a casual "for the fun of it" thing and I can't say enough about how fun it was to shoot on an old F3 and manual focus lenses. I find that the F3 is way way way more portable than a D700/800 or a D200/300. Sure other DSLRs (D3100/D5100/D7000) are more portable, but their finders suck and use with MF lenses is just horrid.
The other thing that sucks about using MF lenses with the D300 and smaller is that the field of view is just not the same as was with 35mm.
Nikon has like 60 years of great MF glass out there, the last 30 being some of the best, many of which they still make today! If they made a digital camera with ~D800 image quality that was built for these lenses that was about the size of an FG or F3 with the same build quality, looks, and ergonomics, I would buy it.