Nikon D300s @ Best Buy today

A birdy told me that my local Best Buy will get the goodies today (Thursday, August 27th). The Nikon D300s and D3000 just came out of the box when I got there - they were still charging the batteries and I did not have a lot of time to change the settings - the videos were shot with whatever the default setting was right out of the box.

Nikon D300s and D3000 @ BestBuy:


This is how 7 fps looks/sounds like:


This is how the AF-On function works during video recording - basically you hit the AF-ON button during video recording and the camera autofocus automatically based on contrast-detect (a feature that the D90 doesn't have):

The jelly effect is still there:

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  • iHateCanon

    WTF ?? I called Best Buy ! About 7 stores across the USA and they said it would be in on September 6th ? WTH ?

  • you can even see the reflection of the NR Admin on the first video…

  • low

    NR rox

  • NikoDoby

    Wait who’s shooting the video of admin?

    • Anonymous

      NikoDody – I am using my other hand to hold the video camera (DLux 4) – sorry I am not logged in – problems with the database tonight.

  • Damn! I want one!
    And yes, NR is having issues tonight.. couldn’t load the page.

  • OK, back in business… the issue was not mine, it was the web host….

  • iHateCanon

    Does anyone know how to make it shoot like that without the lens in it ?? I tried that in the regular D300 with no lens in Best Buy and it would even take a picture ..???? How do you do it ??

    • I believe the best option is to use AF-L button
      My thought is it’s not taking a picture because without the lens it’s having a hard time finding a focus (AF-S) so if you just lock the focus it should just shoot.
      Perhaps just setting it to AF-C (the S-C-M lever) that could help too.

      Sorry I’m too lazy to go get the D300 and try.

      Did I understand the question right and does that sound about right?

    • Phil

      Set it to manual.

      • NikoDoby

        canon hater, the D300 you tried is set to “No CF Card-Lock”. You have to either put in a memory card to fire the shutter or “Unlock” that option in the settings menu.

    • shutterdancer

      I really cring to think about all those dust bunnies that flapping mirror was sucking into the 300s with the body cap off.

      • iamlucky13

        It’s going to suffer much worse than dust bunnies over the life of sitting on display at Best Buy.

        After shopping for lenses at the Circuit City closeout, I will never recommend a display piece of camera gear. All of it was filthy, probably half the lenses had jammed apertures, and about as many had significant cosmetic damage.

  • Bastiaan

    The AF is not something a lot of people will use if it behaves like this. Manual focus would probably be much smoother and makes less noise.

    Why do we always see this jerky autofocus on digital cameras (also compacts) but I have never seen something like this on camcorders?

    • iHateCanon

      Yeah you can hear the sound it makes while autofocusing .. that could be really annoying if you would want to shoot some real time clips..

    • MarkusW

      I also don’t like the sound of the AF during movie mode. But I’m right so suppose that manual focus is possible too, aren’t I?

      • Ennan

        the latest issue of Nikon Pro magazine suggests that you should use an external microphone in order to use the autofocus feature – that way you wont pick up the sound of the lens.

        I think I’d rather manual focus anyway – that autofocus wasn’t pretty…

  • Carson

    Nice job! You rock.

  • Anonymous

    7 fps looks and sounds pretty fast. =D And this store looks really familiar, unless all bestbuy stores look the same (it’s been a wile since I’ve been to bestbuy).

  • ibhacknu

    I think I’ll pass on the floor sample. 7fps with the lens off… yeah, that’s gotta be good for things

  • Rich

    The “jelly” effect is, I believe, better called “rolling shutter”.

    Watch for a better explanation and possible correction route –

  • @Admin

    Can you tell me what focal lengths you used for each video? I noticed with the D90 that the jelly was much worse with the longer lenses than it was with the shorter focal lengths. I’ve also noticed that the D300s jelly is manageable, just as with the 5D, whereas the D90 is VERY touchy, and requires some incredibly steady hands, or stabilization. Testing the D90, there were bad effects even when the camera wasn’t flailing back and forth at mach5.

    I’m gearing up for a 90 mile trip tomorrow to pick up my D300s, but I’m still very concerned about the jelly effect. Did you shoot any footage at 70mm+? If your example of the jelly is the worst it gets – and “normal use” looks ok – then I think I can make do with it.

    • alex

      why didn’t you shake a 5d at the same time, same equivalent focal length fov? you went in the store for nothing. anyway d300s ministe videos are enough to evaluate jello in different conditions.

      • Actually, the D300 minisite ISN’T a perfect example. How do I know? I purchased the D300s today, and in the few hours I’ve already played with it, I’ve seen plenty of jelly shutter. As I said before, the longer focal lengths, starting at about 50mm, show a much greater degree of distortion with faster movements.

        I know I sound like a hater. I’m not. However, it’s not an irrelevant question. I’m a strong advocate for Nikon for numerous reasons. However, I will be the first to admit that, from what I’ve seen so far, the rolling shutter issue is greater with D90 that with the 5D. The video on the 5D (with Nikon lenses) looks incredible, and I very well may have considered using it instead if it weren’t for the fact that Canon chose to record video at the abysmal 30 fps.

        Don’t get me wrong – there are always limitations in just about anything. Instead of embracing the limitation of having to shoot at the soap opera frame rate of 30fps, I chose to embrace the limitation of a more greatly exaggerated rolling shutter “jelly” effect.

      • Then I find sites like this, where everything about what I just said goes completely into question:

        Pretty horrible jelly effect on the Canon footage.

  • The contrast AF on the D90, D300 and D300s are REALLY bad. This doesn’t look like enough to make me spend the money and upgrade from the D90. If Olympus can do it why can’t Nikon get contrast detect AF to work? They also need to take a clue in video codecs from Panasonic. Love the D300/300s body, handling, etc. but Nikon is shooting blanks these days on a lot of other areas.

  • Ken Elliott

    “Dear Nikon Support,

    All my pictures have a lot of funny spots all over them. I purchased the display camera from Best Buy, and it had the lens off for a few months. Do you think that had anything to do with it?”

    • “No, probably not. You should wait ’till the camera’s warranty period expires and then get the camera serviced to one of our service facilities. It’s only gonna cost you some 100 bucks or so.

      Thank you very much for buying one of Nikon’s superb products!

      A Guy That Works For Nikon But Uses Canon Equipment”

      • Ronan

        LOL! If anything i see more Canon employee’s with Nikon gear. Unless they have the rebel xD

  • kite

    stupid jelly effect, the d300s video is as useless and hopeless as the d90 one, bought it for the video and very disappointed traded for the 500D instead, the video is 10 times better!

    • You rather take the 500D just because it has better (NOT!) video mode?
      Just buy a video camera for the half of the 500D’s cost and stop whining!

  • 123

    AF in Video mode in D300s is terrible. Rolling shutter is unpleasant. Generally video quality is still bad (even I don’t speak about so Jurassik Park as Motion JPEG and only 24 fps). Shame on you, Nikon. Times, when I was proud with Nikon gone.

    Thanks for videos.

  • Jay

    YAY 7fps at 12 bit way to go nikon… rolls eyes

    • Tomaocron

      Agreed! First thing I did when I bought my D700 was set it to 14 bit 😀

  • anon

    these videos prove why having wideo in a DSLR is a novelty and not actually useful. I don’t get this “let’s buy one device to handle phone calls, videos, music, camera, etc etc”… AND expect it to be good at any of them. it’s ridiculous. That auto focus is horrific. I’ve been using manual focus for video on my girlfirend’s mom’s d90 since it was released and it’s simple to do… However, it’s still an utter pain to shoot video with it just because i don’t find it comfortable to shoot video with a dslr.

    Plus i don’t get the argument that wedding photographers will use this feature. That’s going to 1) detract from your photo taking 2) cause more stress and work on you now that you have more items to cover 3) eliminate some videographer who could end up getting you a job at another wedding if you make good acquaintences with them. Jack of all trades is an expert at none. Deals with people and devices. just my opinion..

    • Anonymous

      Have you seen any of the work done with the Canon 5d? Video in a DSLR is useful to indie filmmakers because of the camera’s large sensor and lens options. These are features not found in camcorders 3 times the price of a Canon 5D. Just because Nikon sucks at implementing a feature, doesn’t mean that feature is a bad idea…

      • I have seen it

        Well, I have seen the 5D II launch video and I thought “WOW, how boring”. It’s one thing to do a tech demo video but it’s another to do a real movie. You can’t do a real movie with a DSLR because the camera HAS to be very static in both position and focus. Basically that launch video was just a bunch of static footage put together and that made for a very very very boring show.

        • zack

          >I have seen it<, you don't know what you're talking about. You want shoot all the scenes with f.1.8 right? Also, anonymus was talking about indie not hollywood films so you can set a scene, rehearse it and use one cam. It can be done, so stop moaning. This cam as well as D90 has terrible rolling shutter. Panasonic GH-1 is miles better as well as 5DII. If Nikon decision is to stick with this codec, then I predict more NIkon losses at the end of this year.

        • Human

          Bullshit! Why are you think, everybody want to have video mode in DSLR to make “Real movies”? Ah? Again, bullshit! I don’t need movies, I need just short clips (maximum 5 minutes. Maximum!), but with excellent quality. So, I never buy special device for video clips, that we call camcorder or videocamera. I don’t need to buy $1000 (or more) videocamera, to make sometimes short clips! How you boring already, who always talking one and the same stupid thing as parrot: “Buy videocamera…” “Buy videocamera…” No!!! I won’t buy! For this reason I don’t need those f***g jerky 24 fps. I’m not in Holywood, I don’t need to shoot Star Wars. I need family clips (2-3 minutes separate clips). So, when somebody tell me “Man, but 24 fps use in Hollywood…”. I don’t care about Hollywood! In Hollywood they make jerky movies! But good news, I have PHILIPS TV with Digital Natural Motion function to improve Hollywood’s poor 24 fps.

    • Rich

      I dunno. Admittedly, DSLR video capabilities are still evolving. I’m really interested to see what happens with the D4 when released, as I expect them to want to compete more closely with the likes of RED, as well as some of the micro 4/3rd’s crowd. Hoping for something great, video-wise, from that camera.

      BTW – have you seen some of the micro 4/3rd’s video from the Panny GH1? Not technically a DSLR, but pretty darn close. Some of these are fairly awesome…


    I checked all the stores by me (Maryland) Best Buy, Ritz and Penn Camera and they all said sometime in the next week or so.

    Anyway, I just ordered my D3000 from Amazon which is in-stock and I should get it on Wednesday.

  • WoutK89

    In Holland it is available now too 🙂 1949 euro retail price?, but the store I looked at already had them for 1599, thats a day one discount of 350 euro 😉 at the same store, the D300 (none s) is 1169 euro…, is it worth the 430 euros difference?

  • Chris

    Look likes the same Wobble effect as the D90!

  • msb29

    wow the economy must be really bad, no one in the store or near the new D300s….thanks for the video, with what I heard before, I thought the jelly effect would be much worse than that even if it is not really good, I dont think you need to move that fast around when you film stuff, unless you’re filming a ping pong game. But this makes me really think anyway about if I should get the D300 instead or even the D3000 with a good lens and wait to have money for the next D700x…very nice build though…just the build itself is enough to not want a Canon…..

  • Anon

    The video mode is fine. If you’re looking to make a short film with the camera, you’re not going to whip it around like a maniac like the demo video did. You don’t do that with film cameras so why would you do it with a DSLR? On slow pans, it works just fine.

    • Anonymous

      Exactly – well put.

      If you’re using some sort of camera stabilizing device (tripod with pan head, or even a monopod) the video output can be pretty good, actually.

      I think most of you complaining about the rolling shutter are doing so because you have nothing else to complain about. If Nikon had released the D300s without video you’d be complaining about that instead.

      Think about the quality of the video you need to shoot before putting down the quality of the video in these cameras. Used with some care (and understanding some of its shortcomings) the video performance of my D90 is very good overall.

      • MW


  • Eric

    Why is everyone so surprised that there’s still jello video? This is still brand new technology and the D300s is using the same sensor as the D90 and D5000. Just be patient and give DSLR video a couple generations to mature and enjoy the fact that it’s there to use at all, since we were using DSLRs only for still just a year ago.

    • KR

      Because a year in digital cameras is equal to 25 regular years.

    • Anonymous

      This isn’t brand new technology. It’s brand new to Nikon.

      People are surprised because the D300’s video was advertised as being an improvement over the D90’s video.

      The processor is to blame for the rolling shutter issue, not the sensor.

      • Eric

        As far as I know, rolling vs. global shutter is an issue to do with CMOS tech rather than processing. Do you have any links to info that might fill me in on how the D300s might lack a sufficient video processor?

        To Nikon’s credit they never claimed in the D300s press release that the video quality itself would be improved.

  • I live in Los Angeles and the camera dealer I always buy my Nikon body’s through got it delivered at 10am this morning. I’m stuck on set though so I can’t pick it up. Hoping to have it by end of today and start playing around with it on set this weekend.

  • Zoetmb

    Comon…unless you were shooting “Man from Uncle” or “Bourne Conspiracy” type shots, you would never pan that fast anyway. Besides, there’s a software program to fix the rolling shutter problems anyway.

    While camcorders do avoid this problem, unless you’re shooting very high-end, you don’t have the advantages of large-sensor, big lenses on a camcorder.

  • Berger Brothers on Long Island had it in stock at 1PM today and I got it for list, but they threw in an extra battery.

  • Ronan

    You guys need to realize that:
    AF is here to help you, you still have to do the rest manually.
    Get a proper video rig and 90% of the jelly or w/e that crap is called will be gone (see redrock micro).
    If used properly, video DSLR are amazing.

    A lot of you guys sound like amateurs that set their camera on Auto and then complain about the result.

    Get your hands dirty and you won’t be dissapointed.

    • Ryan

      so true Ronan… sucks when amateurs talk, seems like only crap comes out of their mouths… I can’t wait, my school has a 5d mark II, im so glad they are producing us with a brand new D300s for the nikonians at the school to use instead of canons stuff. I think im going to go and buy one for myself in any case to have for myself so i don’t have to rely on signing it out…

  • MW

    Amazon: In stock on August 30, 2009

  • ^_^

    just 4 display none for sale yet.

  • HUeMAN

    Just got my ‘shipped’ confirmation from Amazon. Looks as if they ran out though and will have some back in stock on the 30th. Mine has been on order since July 31st… It’ll ALL be good to me since I’m upgrading from a D70.

    • Ryan

      hahah hey anything from a d70 ( at this point in time because of technology changes)… even the d90 would be a big jump in quality and options… have fun!

  • Just opened mine up. So far loving it. I’ll be testing it in more detail over the weekend as I have a bunch of shoots.

  • I can’t find any BB in the California Bay Area that has them in stock…I went to 3 in my area with no luck. They also check the system and show none in the area. If I’m wrong someone please let me know.

  • Anon

    NR Admin I’m disappointed with you. In my imagination you were a tall and muscular young athlete and I wanted you to have my baby. But you seem short and chubby and you wear a cap like some college brat. Noooooo

    • sorry to disappoint you – the hat was for disguise, they have cameras in Best Buy…

  • msb29

    Never buy those at Best Buy, there are much cheaper ones online…unless you want to test it in person. It’s hard for me to decide but I think Ill make the big move to D300s, it’s my first Nikon and I dont care, Im sure I will learn it with practice, Im good with computers and Ive done good photographs before. I did a few miracles with a Lumix Panasonic P&S that not even a Canon could do…I’m too afraid to get the D90 with some bad reviews that I read and anyway, not as many features in it.

    • Ground Rat

      BB has %10 off coupons, 18 months no interest (home lay-a-way), and reward zone in store cash back.

  • Human

    So Canon introduced EOS 7D with video 1920 x 1080 and choice of 30, 25 or 24 fps. That, what we ask Nikon already long time. But Nikon is deaf. And this EOS 7D will have almost the same price as Nikon D300s. So, Nikon sucks.

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