Nikon shooting commercials for a new camera near Page, AZ

CorkScrewAntelope Canyon, Page, Arizona, photo by Ozyman/flickr

Update: I got some more info - the commercial shots were for the D3100. Expect to see the Antelope (and other) canyons in the D3100 brochure or website after it gets announced on August 19th.

The rumor is that Nikon was/is shooting a commercial/sample photos for a new Nikon camera somewhere in the canyons around Page, AZ. If someone has seen or heard anything (a picture would be perfect) please contact [NR]. The initial report was that the camera was an entry level model (maybe D3100). Check also your favorite Nikon photographer's website/blog and see if anyone has uploaded any new pictures of canyons taken near Page, Arizona in the past few days.

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  • zzddrr

    This is getting ridiculous.

    • But hey- maybe “It has begun.” 😉

      • zzddrr

        Yes Fried Toast, it has begun … slowly we are losing our sanity 🙂

        • Slowly? Hurry up! You’re behind the pack. The rest of us got rid of ours lonnnnnnnnnnng ago 😉

    • Banned

      No, let me tell you what’s ridiculous: recently I’ve been wanting to go to Page, AZ in order to check out these nice canyons. I checked the website for this park only to find out that it was NOT a national park but an area of land given to the descendants of the Indians by the US gov so they can charge $35 an hour! Yes, that’s $35 and your time there is limited. What a shame.

      • Banned

        By the way, back to topic, it’s called “Antelope Canyon”

      • Absolutely outrageous that we took their land… and then gave it BACK! Who ever thought o’ such a thing?

        *rolls eyes*


        • Carlos R B

          Good one…

      • bob

        There are other slot canyons in the Page area that do not cost $35. Do some research.

      • preston

        Wow, somebody’s feeling entitled. If we hadn’t have TAKEN IT from them in the first place then I imagine they wouldn’t feel the need to charge people to see it.

        • Even if it were a Nat’l Park, maybe it’d cost $35 to maintain facilities there. I don’t see what the problem is. Disney doesn’t let you on their property for free. Heck, one can pay almost $30 at the theater for a movie + food if you’re not careful.

          Guess this is what happens when the younger generation grows up on bit torrents.

          • Ric H


    • Jabs

      Hey zzddrr,
      What’s ridiculous?
      This column, Nikon going above 12 megapixels or what?

      The art of complaining is ALIVE!

      Oh to rant and rail.

  • Neal

    Nikon! I cannot wait for you to come out with video.

    • This could turn out to be great timing. I have been researching the Canon Rebel T2i just today, thinking of picking it up to replace my D300s for video. I want something that can do 60 fps, and Nikon is yet to offer that at this time. Don’t get me wrong—the current Nikons produce great looking as VSLR footage, but the slomo is a really valuable feature to me. If Nikon releases something with 60fps soon, I can then sell the Rebel and pick that up the Nikon without losing too much dough. The idea is sell the D300s now and get a decent amount from it (before strong replacement comes out on the Nikon front), pick up a Canon, then sell the Canon if Nikon comes out with something comparable or better in the 2nd gen of VSLR cameras. Even the D90 replacement sounds pretty sweet. If it lacks 60fps, however, I may be forced to stick with the Canon a while longer than hoped.

      Another factor is manual control. Shooting with manual control on the D3s makes the D300s really challenging to use, especially when noise is so often prevalent in the D300s footage. Rolling shutter artifacts are also more prevalent in the D300s. These issues will all be greatly improved upon by the interim Canon side-step. Rolling shutter is said to be virtually non-existent in 720p, and full manual control means keeping the camera at base ISO or close whenever possible, something just not in the realm of possibility with the D300s.

      Now, that said, switching to Canon for video isn’t all peaches and rosebuds. It’s really difficult not to conclude that the Canon footage sucks when looking around at samples. I mean, so many supposedly great shooters are really producing some awful crap. Take for example a well known wedding videographer in Chicago who shoots Canon VSLRs (name withheld for my protection). I’m not sure if the shooters I see (even on higher end sites like Vimeo) are just unskilled, or if they really are pushing the equipment and it’s simply not up to par. I mean, white balance, color grading, artifacting from compression—all issues I see that makes the Canon footage SCREAM “I’M DIGITAL, I’M DIGITAL!!!!”

      The Nikon stuff looks so organic compared to the Canon footage. And yet I’ve seen the last episode of the 6th season of House (shot on the 5dMii), and it looked incredible. I know the potential is there, but it seems hard to believe when I see so many examples of worse than mediocrity on the web. Anyway, I’m hoping that Nikon comes out with a tool that really touches some of these points I’ve been wanting soon so I can let go of the Rebel body quickly. I feel a little dirty even thinking about going over there, what with all those lame spinny wheel controls and misplaced aperture dials. Yuk!

      • Interesting…Yeah, D3s is a sick machine. Definitely makes shooting footage easier. I can’t think of/haven’t heard of a good excuse why Nikon hasn’t released a firmware upgrade for the D300s for full manual controls. That’s really a shame. It has the potential for great imagery, but auto-selecting ISO combined with high aperture makes for some really noisy videos, even in well lit scenes. So I’m not dumping Nikon, but just committing a minor cardinal sin (???) until Nikon offers a few specific features I could make good use of today.

        If I had to buy Canon glass instead of being able to use my Nikon lenses, I’d be much further away from this option. And unlike a few of the very vocal minority on here, I’m taking my own advice and purchasing what I need today (even if it’s from a company I loathe) instead of whining about it and threatening Nikon.

        I wasn’t aware that VR worked in live view mode. Do they really offer stabilization when shooting video?

        • Victor Hassleblood

          Sooo many words …

          You are a good boy and a true soldier. Don’t worry Ron, it’s alright.
          Of course you are not whining and your motivation comes from a heart of gold, a pure and brave one too. I am sure your relationship and sexual intercourse with Conan will serve the country and not betray anybody. Still it seems to cause you a lot of pain …
          You are an example to look up to. You are my hero. Completely different to me, who still considers and even considers the glass as well.

          Let us know, how you get on with the combination of Conan’s body, an adapter form which brand ever and Nikon’s glass.

          P.S. And let me know if Nikon’s VR works on a Canon.

        • Simply put? I don’t think the D5000, D90, or D300s are set up for manual controls. There’s a bit more to it than just enabling them in firmware. And Nikon hasn’t yet figured out how to make the “manual video UI” right, which is why they bury it on the D3s with an extra button press, forcing you to tell the camera “yeah, I know what I’m doing here and that all isn’t quite as it seems.”

          I’d be surprised if a D3100 had true manual video controls.

          • I know they currently don’t allow for manual control, but I’m not convinced it really IS anything more than a simple firmware fix. Maybe it is. But what else would be stopping it to function correctly? I know the D3s manual control interface (turning it on) isn’t ideal. However, I don’t care if I have to push this that or another button—if it works, I’ll figure it out.

            And I’ve got a pet hunch that the D3s was NOT going to feature manual controls, just like the rest. At least not immediately. It was a hidden feature that someone figured out and published. My exhibit A is the lack of documentation mixed with the haphazard response from Nikon once reports of it surfaced in the wild. It seemed like a shotgun response. That’s just my opinion….

          • @Patrick—

            The problems I’ve encountered with the limited manual control:

            – Shutter speed can’t be controlled (only manipulated)
            – Stopping down to manipulate shutter speed causes ISO to bump up in most situations, causing needless noise.
            – Have to lock exposure once it’s dialed in, making any changes take quite a bit more time than on full manual cameras (unlock exposure, re-dial in, re-lock exposure).
            – Turning off camera gets rid of exposure lock.

            The camera shoots some great video, and definitely is a step up from traditional camcorders. But the loss of these limitations will be a welcome one, and a timesaver too. : )

          • @Patrick

            As far as I know, the exposure comp is just adjusting ISO, though it may be controlling SS as well.

            Also, it’s impossible to capture live footage at a shutter speed lower than the FPS of the clip; since Nikon only shoots at 24fps, the cameras don’t allow you to shoot below 1/25th of a second.

            Standard shutter speeds on traditional cameras are equivalent to 1/48th of a second (mechanical shutters need a short period of time between frames to work properly, unlike electronic shutters), which is also very close to the motion that our eyes see. Anything above 50fps and you start to get a “stuttered” look, like you see in action movies. Anything slower than this and you actually need to slow down the film, which is occasionally done during dream sequences. Choppy and blurry is the result.

        • I didn’t know the VR worked in live view mode. Cool. I’ll have to try that out—if I ever get a VR lens.

          As for the Canon lenses, I must not have been clear: I’m planning on using my Nikon lenses on a Canon T2i, since I can use my existing glass on the Canon body with an adapter. I don’t need autofocus on the Canon (only going to be used for video), and I can get the $10 adapter so I can use my Nikon glass on the Canon body.

  • nick94

    that’s a nice shot.

    • Do I have to mention that the canyon picture is just for illustration purposes and it has nothing to do with Nikon?

      • Hey Peter, one thing I REALLY like about this new theme: clear css styles on the commenter’s name/website links. Makes it easy to see that they have a website to visit. Often useful to evaluate their authority when I either really love or really hate their comment! 🙂

        • Amen. I believe in always putting one’s name behind one’s comments on the internet. I honestly just don’t really care what people have to say if they post anonymously. Or if their work is really horrible, I’ll respect them for using their real name but probably still won’t care what they have to say…


          • NiknWontRepairMyGray

            This post is about a potential commercial shoot of an upcoming Nikon DSLR, not about how you 2 pansy feel. Please kindly leave and go cry over there in the corner.

            • I knew you guys would start to come out of the woodwork.

              And for the record, linking to one’s mediocre work doesn’t automatically incline me to slot you in as a crappy photographer. We all started somewhere, and I end up with a lot more respect for those who give me a chance to learn more about them. And, many of the folks I’ve checked out on here have shown me up.

              But it’s really nice to get a read on photogs when they have something to say in such a vocal community of posters.

            • Discontinued

              @Ron Adair,

              You are probably the only existing reason, why people come anonymously to NR. They are just afraid of you.

              It’s good to know now, that “linking to one’s mediocre work doesn’t automatically incline” YOU “to slot” ME “in as a crappy photographer.”

              This is very kind of you MASTER. Can’t you think of any other reason why people might not spread their webpages and e-mail-adresses all over the place?

              And BTW, doing it among other photographers doesn’t really get you more clients.

            • @Discontinued: why are people afraid of me? Is it because they’re not a world class photographer?

              I used to suck as a photographer—in fact I sucked for a lot more years than most photographers typically do. I’ve worked hard and been blessed with opportunities to improve my photography. I don’t suck anymore, but there are way better photographers in the world than myself.

              Personally, I see posting your real identity online merely as an extension of the courtesy that a civil society would offer face to face. That I glean information about a person (and their shooting style/image quality) when they do offer that courtesy is merely a matter of individual choice I would think.

            • Discontinued


              this was just iRONic.

              AGAIN: Can’t you think of any other reason why people might not spread their webpages and e-mail-adresses all over the place?

              I already get enough e-mails. Luckily and thanks to some web hygenic precautionary measures almost all of them project related.

            • I’m guessing you don’t understand the difference between when you post your email address and it ISN’T published, and when you post your website and it IS published. I can understand you not posting your email address when visiting sites like, but NikonRumors? I’ve received exactly zero emails from this site except for issues about which I’ve contacted Peter directly. Same goes for the other “trusted” sites I visit quite often.

              And yes, I can think of many reasons why people don’t link to their own webpages here, but one stands out above the rest: they want to say whatever they want with zero responsibility. I don’t often say what’s popular, but I do try to say what I’ll be willing to back up any time now or in the future.

        • Yes, the new theme is much better – as I said, I haven’t updated in almost 2 years. There are many small things that you may not even notice. I still have to do some small changes.

      • nick94

        haha well I kind of figured that after I posted the comment. Now I feel stupid…

  • Twoomy

    Everybody and their mother shoots Antelope Canyon every single day. Those slot canyon shots are so cliche, you’re not a true landscape photographer until you’ve shot a “rays of god” shot that looks like everybody else’s. Unless you’re looking at metadata, new Antelope Canyon photos don’t mean anything.

    • Cliche for those that live there, maybe. Not so much for those of us that can’t get there quite so easily.

      Besides, it’s a natural wonder. Enjoy the shots for the grandeur that they are. If they weren’t impressive or wonderful, all those people and their mothers wouldn’t be shooting there every single day 😉

      • I lived in AZ for 12 years, moved back east last year but returned this year for a photo trip. I hit all the spots I wanted to capture except for Antelope due to time, poor maps/planning etc. I was a little bummed.

        Since then I’ve read quite a few negative reviews on how the tribe handles tours inside slots/canyons and overall shooting conditions (dust, etc). I’ve seen so may shots of Antelope now that I tend to agree about it being cliche. Would I mind antelope shots in my portfolio? Not at all. But when I return to AZ this fall, I’ll be making time for less photographed/more stunning locales (imo) like Coyote Buttes/Paria Canyon/”The Wave”.

        • Gerry

          Been to antelope canyon, and the upper canyon is a disaster. TONS of people, people throwing sand all over the place to get the “mist” shots, many angry photographers telling people to get out of the way….

          The lower antelope canyon is much better, and doesnt cost anything to get in. It is a much better place, but it does not have as good of pictures. If you want some far less used canyons, I can give you some good ones!

        • David Hasselblaff

          I read that antelope canyon is totally overrated and photographers who don’t mind a five minute hike will have much better photo opportunities at the nearby rattlesnake canyon.

          • “Rattlesnake Canyon.” Now that sounds inviting! Is this where long teles and TCs come in handy? 😉

    • I agree. There are few unknown and lesser known places I could have shown Nikon that have nearly as good color and shape and don’t produce cliche shots or reveal to the world that you’re doing a shoot there ;~).

      But I think the point of a consumer ad campaign is different. A D3100 owner would aspire to taking any of those cliche shots, so saying that the camera can do justice to a place first known for shots taken with MF cameras and done in big prints will appeal to the target audience for the camera.

      • The aspiring part I definitely agree with. Which dovetails with my point of photos being cliche to those that know about the subject. I’ve seen shots like the above, but never (until now) knew where it was at (or that it was called Antelope Canyon). It’s not cliche to me . And I’m sure that I’m not the only person in the world that has no clue where it’s at or is tired of looking at the fantastic colors and shapes.

        Guess if we’re going for cliche, I could start railing on people that enjoy photos from Tokyo. On occasion, I feel like Tokyo’s all been shot and that everything’s cliche. So what’s the difference? Sure, landscape is static and people aren’t. But then, isn’t *all* landscape cliche at that point?

    • Richard

      With the right light and/or filters the canyons are beautiful, but I do not understand what pictures of “the slots” is supposed to prove. I have seen beautiful images captured with a Canon 10D which is certainly not a high MP camera. I guess that it may be that “if you buy this camera you can take this picture” or some such marketing hype.

      I will say this about “cliches”, some things are simply so beautiful that they have become iconic (and perhaps a bit too commonplace), but more people can enjoy them as a consequence which can’t be all bad. On the other hand, it does make it difficult to come up with a different perspective of things.

      I found an interesting set of rocks in the Guadalupe Mountains a number of years ago and have since seen images captured by some big name pros who could not have been three feet from where I stood. I enjoy mine a great deal, but theirs are interesting as well.

      • Exactly. Just because many people shoot the same place doesn’t mean that we should dismiss all photos as “cliche.” I think we need to appreciate the natural wonder first and foremost. After that, it’s up to us to come up with a different angle than what everyone else is taking.

  • Leaking Starfish

    Needs a huge flash flood to flush things out.


    “rays of “god” ” are even photoshoped today.

    • Kevin

      i’m guilty of that 😀

  • Yummy things coming up soon 😀

  • D3100 is ok, but this sort of photography would best fit to a D700x. Quality megapixels with high DR in an affordable & compact package.

    • gt

      haha – what?

      the price of the camera has no bearing on whether or not a camera body is a “good fit” for a certain type of photography.

      not only that, great landscapes have been taken on all types of camera bodies. If this exact image was shot on a D700 or D700 replacement or D3 or D3x or whatever, it’d probably look identical.

      It’s a great image. don’t put the artwork down and the photographer down because you’re a gearhead

      • There is nothing wrong with this 500 x 331 px web photo as we can’t see the micro details. I want to say there will be a significant difference if it were photographed with a 24mp camera cw a prime lens @ f/8 at ISO 100 and having used a tripod + a good pp workflow, compared to a DX body cw zoom lens wide-open @ ISO 800. At the end, all the small things add up and make the difference. To summarize:

        24mp vs 12mp
        FX vs DX
        prime vs zoom
        wide-open vs optimal aperture
        handheld vs tripod
        base ISO vs medium/high ISO
        propriety raw converter vs 3rd party ones or jpg, etc

        • gt

          I agree the following make a difference:
          * type of lens
          * hand held vs tripod
          * choice of aperture
          * choice of shutter-speed
          * whether or not the photographer shot raw

          For the type of photography featured above, camera body makes the least amount of difference. It’s not low light – so forget high ISO capability. Even if it was lowlight, this image is of still life. You could just choose a low ISO and use a long shutterspeed + tripod.

          More megapixels? doesn’t really matter if you plan to only print 8x10s or display on the web. Even a 24MP can only print a 16 x 20 at 300DPI.

          My point is – something is wrong with you if you looked at the picture above and thought, “woulda been better if he shot it with a D700X!” While you’re at it, you should call Ansel Adams and tell him his photos would have been better if he shot them on a D3x

  • XXL

    This photo was taken on June 2, 2006 in Page, Arizona. ????

    • Gerry

      face palm.

      • XXL

        face palm mouse

    • gt

      the photo is unrelated to the d3100. in fact, it was probably shot with a nikon d70

  • So, just to get back on topic. If the D3100 is being “field tested” and used for a commercial shoot, does that actually mean they will release it soon? what about building a marketing campaign, printing and translating brochures etc. Isn’t that a bit heavy work still for only a couple of weeks to go?
    Unless they have everything ready and are just waiting for the photos.
    I am not in the market for a new cam but the 24-X f4 VR lens is VERY appealing…

  • Gordon

    I will start the conspiracy theory, the report says it is for the rumoured 3100 but wouldn’t it make sense that this could be an upcoming new high MP body? Seeing as Antelope Canyon is a mecca for fine art landscape photographers, even if cliched, would it not make sense to show off the capabilities of a new landscape photography centred Nikon body (a la D700X) at this location?

    For the subject matter at hand and supposed marketing to come out of it, it just doesn’t scream to me of low entry camera.

  • Anonymous
    • maybe he is our guy, but he says that he was there on vacation with his family… we shall see

  • NK4328

    Nikon rumors a place inhabited by gear junkies and not photographers. Do posters here realise that every prediction ever made by Nikonrumors is pretty much always 100% wrong? No wonder serious photography forums laugh at this place. Stop worrying about gear and worry about your photos. A D300 replacement won’t make you better. Instead of posting your terrible pictures in the picture a day thread and jibbering on about replacements all day, learn your craft.

    • Anonymous

      You mean 100% right – you must be new here.

      btw why are you here? You probably are not a photographer either, LOL

    • Merv

      NK4328, I’m not here for art or photography and I most certainly do not claim to be an artist or photographer

      In fact, attitudes such as yours are the reason why I don’t join “photography” clubs

      • Merv, might try one out. I hang out w/ a Tokyo Flickr group and it’s a great group. Sure we’ve got our occasional whackoids, but for the most part, they’re fantastic people. I’ve never heard of a single instance of fighting or arguing over gear. Never any instances of Nikon vs Canon vs whoever nastiness, either. Sure, there’s ribbing by friends over models, makes, etc., but it’s all in jest. Most of us carry more than one brand anyway. As well, our friendships mean more than the brand name we happen to be using that day.

        Don’t give up a possible positive experience because one disgruntled person posts anonymously on the internet.

    • NK4328, yes NR is a website for Nikon gear – got a problem with that? BTW, your comment will be marked as spam.

    • Ant

      I’d love to do that NK4328. However, whilst I can skive off for a few minutes at work looking at the internet without anyone minding, my boss would probably take exception to me grabbing a camera and walking out to take some photos. Is it ok with you if I read this site in the interim, before I can get out with my camera?

      It’s a bit harsh to say that every prediction made by NR is always 100% wrong. You got some statistical data to back up that claim? They’re not always right, but who is always 100% right on everything?

    • Greenwood_Geoff

      You sound bitter. Would you perhaps be happier not reading what other people want and can afford ? Do you still use a 4MP camera ? If not, then maybe you are a gearhead too, just a slower moving one. ;- P

    • Anonymous

      Having a bad day, KennyRock?

    • ChriSin

      Some of us dont own cameras yet and dont want to buy something substandard….especially when weve just graduated from University into a shitty economy and we are broke as hell.

      Or maybe thats just me….

      In either case, I know my craft. And if I need a camera today I can go rent one for 30 bucks (D90). Then again, nowadays everyone wants video too….

  • Darin

    Not sure about this, but what would you guys say to a new 16-55 f3.5-5.6 VR DX kit lens? Probably also improved for video.
    The new DX kit set would then become 16-55 & 55-300…

  • Anonymous

    Nikon is slow.

  • Canon Fanboism

    Can’t you just all trust Nikon for This One Guys?

    Come on, Nikon is a company full of consultants and they know what they are doing beyond our ACTS OF SELFISHNESS!!!


    SLOW PUKE coming out-of-my-mouth

  • Just FYI. The photo of Antelope Canyon you have posted is upside down. Check out the shadows.

    • Victor Hassleblood

      Sounds like you have a very negative view on it. To me it looks as if the shadows are down, where they belong. You did not hit crtl, alt, cmd, 8 all at once and accidentally on a Mac by any chance?

    • mdm

      Been there several times, I agree with Paul, the pic is upside down…

      • Maybe that’s his way of giving a “new perspective” on the place 😉

      • Victor Hassleblood

        Just flipped my Macbook. AMAZIG, the shot works either way. I’ve never been there. To me this looks right no matter how I turn it … except for the discovery of this bright area one third from the left at the bottom of the pic which proofs it: the shot is upside down indeed. I would have never figured.


    PUKE has no sense : up, side or down, it’s all the same

  • Pebbles

    In June Nikon was shooting a commercial at our High school. They were shooting kids playing soccer and volleyball. I tried to get a close look at the new cameras.

    • Nobody took a picture or a video of the shoot in a high school? I would expect to be all over YouTube by now 🙂

    • Richard


  • Temple

    i think it must be very good in high ISO.

  • Wiilyb

    If you think Antelope canyon is too crowded, take a look at the tours to Canyon X…6 photographers max per day and you get 6 hours of shooting for $160. Not cheap but no hoards of tourists.

    Only one tour company does Canyon X do some research.

    • Phillip

      If you want your work stand out, my advice is that you should try to avoid any popular spots.

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