Nikon D90 replacement and a new 200mm f/2 N VRII in September

Current Nikkor 200mm f/2G IF-ED AF-S VR version

Nikon should announce the Nikon D90 replacement and a new Nikkor 200mm f/2.0 with Nano coating and VRII in mid-September (probably on/around September 15th, 2010). The current Nikkor 200mm f/2G IF-ED AF-S VR version was announced back in 2004 and it now sells for around $5,000. Expect the price of the new version to be close to the $6,000 mark.

This will probably be the second and last Nikon announcement before Photokina 2010. We may have another official announcement by the end of the year (after Photokina - based on previous years, Nikon seems to like the end of November time frame).

If my previous report is correct, this should be the last (8th) lens that will be announced in 2010.

Nikon recently updated many of its most popular lenses (18-200, 70-200, 300, 200-400). In addition to VRII, the new Nikkor 200 f/2.0 will be re-designed and will have Nano coating.

I feel very confident with the above information, but until I receive a confirmation from at least one more source, I will rate this rumor at 80% probability.

I will do another Photokina rumors recap tomorrow, since few new pieces of information came out since the last recap.

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  • Max

    Doesn’t Nikon typically announce/release a prosumer model D200, D300 before the consumer model D80, D90? Why do you think they would break stride this time?

    • Not necessarily. The D80 came out after the D200, but with a bit of improved picture quality, IIRC. Then the D300 & D3 came out later, followed up by the D90 and then D7o0. Think that’s how they rolled out. Going off of memory at the moment.

      • LOL. Fail at my own logic there. Time to go back to bed.

        • Kelly France

          So here it is: D200>D80… D300>D90… D300s>D90s or D95.

          • dave

            I think the point here is that the D80 was considered a smaller version of the D200. they shared the same sensor even. the only real advantage the D80 had over the D200 was that the D200 was a power hog while the D80 used hardly any power at all.

            The D300 came out almost a year before the D90. The sensors were similar in terms of resolution, although many think the D90 has a slight edge in high ISO IQ. But the the D90 still had the D80s AF and metering modules while the D300 got the new 51pt AF and a new metering module as well as up to 8fps. So aside from video, the D90 didn’t have much over the D300.

            Last year, the D300s had some small changes, but the big thing was video. But if you aren’t into video, then there is nothing compelling to make you want a D300s over a D300. But the rumored specs for the D95 are a BIG jump over the D300s and that rumored 39-pt AF could be quite competitive with the D300s’ 51pt AF. Add to that a rumored 6fps and 16MP sensor and supposedly better high ISO noise control than the current D90 and you have a camera that is going to eat huge chunks out of D300s sales.

            But, is it possible that with the D95, Nikon is actually merging the D300 and the D90 product lines? Nikon already has the D3000 and D5000 lines for the entry level market. Of course the rumored specs of the D3100 seem to make the D5000 completely irrelevant.

            So, what is Nikon going to do? It seems they need to refresh the D5000 along with the D3100 or drop the D5000 line altogether. Or could they be merging the D5000 and D90 lines into one? Or the D3000 and D5000 lines into one?

            One thing is clear, with the rumored specs of the D95, the D300s isn’t going to survive. Nikon needs a refresh here in a big way. Even if it’s just the D300s body with the new 16MP sensor. Or is Nikon going to drop DX from the entry-level pro lineup altogether?

            These are truly interesting times. And with the rumors at hand, I’m not sure even Nikon knows what they are doing.

            • When the D300 first arrived it had argueably the best IQ of any DX model on the market. Now three years later the D300s has basically the same sensor and will be bettered by new models from Canon, Pentax, Sony and even Nikon itself. It’s still a great camera but why have they not shown it any love?

            • SZRimaging

              I am beginning to think they are merging them, if the rumor of the metal body holds true.

              That said, I want to know about AI compatibility…..

            • Greg Webb

              I agree – the more details come out, this sounds far closer to a D300s than a D90 so if it’s replacing the D90 then either the lines are merging or they’re doing something like a 7D. Would be the first time they’d moved the consumer line conclusively ahead of the pro, and the body construction, frame rate, AF points, resolution… all sound closer to the 300 than 90.

          • Richard

            I think people would be enormously disappointed if Nikon were to release a D90s, as you suggest, which only incorporated some small changes from the D300s. If there is not a generational change, I think Canon will have a lot of new customers. The 7D and 5D MKII lineup are formidable competition for Nikon. I shudder to think what will happen if Nikon does not have something more substantial by the time the the 5D MKIII makes its entrance.

    • Johannes

      I guess the semi-pro DX line is dead, the D300s was the last of its kind. If rumors are true, the D90 successor will have a more pro body with metal and sealing. So there’s no real place for such a camera any more. Those buyers will go to the D700 or its successors…

      • rhlpetrus

        Doesn’t make sense, many people use D300s, in particular PJs and wildlife shooters that require sealed body, crop factor, high fps, top AF and smaller size (than FF). I think the 7D from Canon is a testament to the fact that Nikon was right to have a pro/semi-pro DX line.

        • Eric Pepin

          Thom Hogan himself seems to love his D300’s and ill agree with you, Nikon needs a pro DX camera and the D95 wouldnt be it, the D400 would be or D300x even.

          • Hey, that’s me. And I agree with me! ;~)

            Here’s the thing: having a huge pricing gap between the D90 replacement and D700 replacement isn’t going to happen. It would be a seriously BAD mistake by Nikon not to have a tweener model. Anyone who thinks that they can’t or won’t position another DX body between those two is mistaken.

            Now, as for the precedent everyone is struggling to come up with: D100 on the market, D70 comes out. While there wasn’t a change in sensor, there was a change in image quality, shooting speed, and a number of new options. The general thinking by some at the time was “this will kill the D100.” It did not, nor did the D100 genes die off. It just took awhile before we got the D200. Nikon is not afraid to compete with themselves.

            • PHB

              D300 is one of the best cameras Nikon has ever made IMHO.

              I think a higher MP sensor is going to be a no brainer for a start. But there are other goodies that Nikon can bring on. Faster processor for more fps, dual SD card slots (+ CF for legacy), on board WiFi, on board GPS.

              Don’t forget that the next D300 will be the D400, the lead DX model for the next generation. There is probably going to be a new AF system, a new display, other stuff.

              And please folk, don’t give me the ‘I don’t need feature X’. If you don’t then go buy a D95 or whatever it is called. I don’t need a camera rated for 300,000 shutter releases, but I don’t whine about that being a feature on the D3s.

              Looking at the 14MP and 16MP on the D3100 and D95, I would guess we are looking at rather more than 18 for the D400. Canon are already at 18MP and the D400 is some way into the future.

            • spidercrown

              agree on PHB. the camera is not customized for 1 photographer.

            • LGO

              It does not necessarily work against Nikon’s interest to release a D90-replacement with the 16mp Sony sensor first prior to releasing the same sensor in a D300-type body.

              Given the importance of the Nikon D90-replacement in the product lineup in terms of sales revenue, Nikon need a better replacement as early as possible rather than later so it makes no sense to delay this until the D300-replacement is ready.

              Will this kill the market for the D300-replacement which will appear later? I do not think so. The D300-replacement will likely have the enhanced AF that is expected to first appear in the D4 as well as other enhancements. Moreover, if the recent experience with the D300/D90-D5000 if any indication, the sensor performance of the D300-replacement may be slightly better (unlikely but possible).

              Those who want a D90-replacement body will get this and those who want a D300-replacement will get this.

            • Danny

              I think Nikon will have the best line up in the coming year with the D3100 vs xxxD, D5100 with articulated screen specialized for video shooting, D95 vs xxD, D400 vs 7D, D700X vs 5D mk 2, D4 vs 1Ds mk4.

              Make perfect sense to me. It would take Nikon the rest of this year and next year to completely replace the whole current line up. Very feasible don’t you think?

            • LGO

              Don’t count out Canon yet. If Canon releases a 5D Mk III or 3D incorporating the AF system of the 7D, this can conceivably give the D700-type replacement some very tough competition in the market specially since if the buyer intends to use it for HD-video recording as well.
              Unlike the D3100 and the D90-replacement which will have new APS-C sensors optimized primarily for video, the D700-replacement (whether D700s or D700x) is not expected to have anything more than 720p HD-video. Nikon will have to completely replace the current FF sensor on the D3s and the D3x before it can support 1080p HD-video.

            • LGO

              Don’t count out Canon yet.

              If Canon releases a 5D Mk III or 3D incorporating the AF system of the 7D, this can conceivably give the D700-type replacement some very tough competition in the market specially since if the buyer intends to use it for HD-video recording as well.

              Unlike the D3100 and the D90-replacement which will have new APS-C sensors optimized primarily for video, the D700-replacement (whether D700s or D700x) is not expected to have anything more than 720p HD-video. Nikon will have to completely replace the current FF sensor on the D3s and the D3x before it can support 1080p HD-video.

            • LGO

              Correction: The APS-C sensors for the D3100 and D90-replacement have built-in support for 1080p HD-video, including fast AF during video recording. But it is incorrect to say that the APS-C has been optimized primarily for video.

  • Oooh, nice. Wouldn’t mind having that 200mm in my bag! No need for the D90-whatever-it-will-be, however.

    • Bob

      That’s gonna be some BIG bag!

      • Nicole Elizabeth Cox

        Please don’t talk about me like that. I may be an old bag, but I’m not THAT fat. 🙁

        p.s. Only joking, but I couldn’t resist it. 🙂

    • Richard

      Yikes!!! Did you see the expected price on that puppy? I do not see how the Nikon lens is that much better than the comparable Canon lens.

      • deer

        methinks it may be an update just to make it comparable .. there are slight issues in the corner sharpness @ f2 with the d3x, but thats a very very minor ‘problem’ … nice to see them updating the VR on their lenses 🙂 great way to suck dry our wallets again.

  • timenetworks

    so, if this is true, it seems that D700 replacement will release at 19 August 2010

    • Not necessarily. The text above reads, “This will probably be the second and last Nikon announcement before Photokina 2010.

      The first announcement will most likely be the P&S update. So would imagine any D700 upgraders will be waiting until November.

      • I have no info on the D700 replacement and at that point of time it seems unlikely for Nikon to have a third press conference. Unlikely, but not impossible.

        • Anonymous

          well, then bye bye Nikon since sony has a 24MP and 30MP new sensors and will release by end of the year 2 new FFs.

          • rhlpetrus

            Rumor has it that Sony is dropping FF. And I wouldn’t trade Nikon’s IQ and body quality for Sony’s. There’ll be a higher MP D700-like body at some point, likely next year.

            BTW, why do you need 24+ MP?

            • Anonymous

              @rhlpetrus – I need 24MP + because I want to enlarge the imperfections on that small avatar of yours and see how bad shawing job you had done. 🙂

              Besides, I have 12MP why would I need another 12MP? 24MP gives you different options.

            • big eater

              Why do you need more than 24 megapixels? Because of editors and art directors. They want it all. They want to be able to crop in on some random detail if they feel like it. And at publications where I’ve worked I’ve seen photos cropped and recropped several times before going to press because of layout changes; because the theme of the story changes; and just because…. So theoretically you don’t need more megapixels, but in reality, more megapixels are like having money in the cookie jar: they helps you sleep better at night.

            • PHB

              Oh thats easy, if you have 30MP then you can crop to DX at 12MP and have all the benefits of both cameras in one format.

          • My sources say one new Sony full frame in early 2011, and it’s still 24mp (though the sensor may have been tweaked). But given that the previous Sony’s didn’t exactly light up the cash registers around the world, what would make it different this time? US$1499? ;~)

            Sony still has the chicken and egg problem. It thought the installed Minolta lens base would sell bodies. Didn’t exactly turn out that way. But without selling bodies, Sony can’t put too much money into developing new lenses. So full frame for Sony is either a long term commitment or a bust, their choice.

            • Anonymous

              All we need is a smart adapter to use Nikkors on budget 24mp Sony FF 😉

            • rhlpetrus

              Hey anonymous, the question is still open. I didn’t say stick to 12MP, I just asked why 24MP. The Sony sensor in the D3x seems to have two problems: low fps at 14 bits and no video ability.

              So, heck, get your Canon or Sony, who’s holding you back? Sell your Nikon gear, not that difficult.

            • PHB

              Or they might do better to concede the DSLR space entirely and try to make a serious dent in the mirrorless market.

              Focus is critical in business. Thrying to break into the upper end of the DSLR market has real opportunity costs for Nikon and has not shown much return.

              Full Frame is not an advantage, only Full Frame plus a top performance lens to make the most of it is worthwhile. Don’t look to me like the Sony FF package is really worth lugging round the extra weight.

            • Richard

              What to your sources suggest about Nikon using the about to be introduced Sony FF sensors (or a tweaked version of them)…or is Nikon ready to go their own way on FF sensors now?

            • I didn’t feel lacking to have 5fps with my D2x. And when I wanted, I could bump up to 8fps cropped.

              The D3x is basically the same idea. If they don’t make a cheaper/smaller one, the D3x it will be, with not a tear lost over video.

              And yes, I DO want a higher mp sensor. Clients like to change their mind after you’ve shot sometimes, and it’d be nice to be able to crop instead of re-shoot.

          • M3

            So get a D3X…

        • timenetworks

          Last week, when I went to the shop than i usually go.
          When I check the price list, I found that D3000 is also not included in the list.
          I asked the staff there and they told me that Nikon have no stock for them.
          D700 had already out of the list since May and D3000 was gone too.

          D700 was announce 9-10 months after D3s release.
          D3s was announce 13-14 months after D3 release.
          Nikon had said that “Count the months. How much later was the D700 after the D3? About 8 or 9 months after the announcement. So if you follow, you won’t have to wait until after summer 2010 approximately.”

          So, I believe D700 replacement(may be D700s, I don’t know) will release soon.

          Sorry for my bad English. Sorry.

  • Congratulations for your counting fail. Might want to try out some remedial math classes to get you up to speed. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

    • time, however, is not? (jokes, but you do have 5 of the first 9 comments!)

      • It’s night where I’m at. Not exactly a killer for me to waste 15-30 minutes kicking the tires @ NR 😉

  • Rafael

    I wonder why does Nikon update so often such expensive glass? like the 200-400 update etc or the 300 f2.8 VR II, etc.. arent the lower end lenses market a more profitable market?

    I mean most of the fixed focal lengths from the 20mm f2.8, 24mm f2.8, 28mm f2.8, 35mm f2, 85mm f1.8 , could use an AFS and G upgrade too, woudnt you agree?

    • Good question. I wonder if the upgrade was minimal on their end. Perhaps a minimal cost upgrade + good margins + improved deals with large customers might push things like this. Would imagine that the partnership with NASA would give them impetus to maintain some of their more expensive teles. Would think a small (comparatively), fast lens like this would be perfect for work in space.

    • malez

      agreed, shouldn’t they be doing more updates for the lower tier lens?

      • +1, would love updated WA primes like 21mm, 18mm, etc.

    • Eric Pepin

      its about the margins though, nikon could ( just guessing) make so much on just a few sales of the 200 f2 that it is a higher priority then the wide primes. Also a company is always judged by its best high end lenses (85 1.4 vs 85 1.2, 600 vs 600, etc).

      At this point im guessing the old wide primes need complete redesigns which costs a lot more then polishing up a barely old expensive model.

    • > I wonder why Nikon does these upgrades

      Costs, probably. They’re trying to keep only one set of parts in production where possible. These lenses (200 and up exotics) are produced in low volume, so the only way you get cost advantages is to pool up as many of the component parts as possible. Otherwise everything is custom for runs of 300-400 lenses. That gets expensive.

      • PHB

        Another big expense is the cost of setting up and calibrating assembly equipment for each model. It might take a week or more to get a set up calibrated and a few minutes per lens to actually do the work. If you only make a few hundred it becomes uneconomic.

        If you are the product manager for pro lenses, you are going to base your decision on which new lens to make in part on the basis of how many of the older models you have left to sell and what production facilities you have and how much time it will take to convert them to a given design.

        When the tilt shift lenses came out there was a sequence of three in short succession. They probably required a complex setup that was specific to tilt-shift.

        Whenever a new batch of $5000 plus lenses is being planned, there is going to be a decision taken on whether to update the lens and if so, whether to designate a new model number. This time they are adding nano coating to a lens that didn’t have it previously and upgrading the VR to VRII. It is a change in the optical formula that merits a new designator but not likely to be a major one.

        Eight new lenses does not mean eight completely new lens designs.

        • Roger

          Ah, the tilt shifts! Did Canon make them look stupid with their 17mm and 24mm II TS-E lenses or what?

          Nikon has released those tilt shifts, only to be outdone by Canon in record breaking time and we’re back to the good old “if you want tilt shifts, buy Canon” recommendations.

          That’s what happens when you dont think things through, Nikon!

          • Jason

            I’m intrigued – what is wrong or deficient with Nikon’s PC-E lenses? The 24mm is nothing short of incredible

          • Richard

            Yea, really.

            A few months ago I had a conversation with a landscape photog using the new Canon 24 T/S and it is nothing short of amazing…as were the resulting images I saw. Though I have no first hand experience with the Nikon T/S, the reports of QC problems are very disturbing before one even gets to comparing performance.

            • Jason

              Get the real thing in your hands and ignore reports – you won’t be disappointed. It’s my favourite landscape lenses, and does perfect panoramics into the bargain.

    • nikkor_2

      “I wonder why does Nikon update so often such expensive glass?”

      It’s clear: Nikon is attempting — first and foremost — to fully satisfy the pro market.

      At a major tennis tournament last weekend, the Canon pro shooters had — at times — the Canon 200mm mounted on a Mark III or Mark IV. None of the pro Nikon shooters — and there were quite a few — mounted the existing 200mm on the D3 or D3S.

      In my (limited) experience shooting the Nikkor 200mm f/2 at D1 men’s basketball, the AF is just not ‘snappy enough’. Mount the current 70-200 f/2.8 VR II on a D3S and it’s a different story; man, it’s so fast. 🙂

    • Jabs

      Short and sweet answer!

      Nikon’s reputation is BUILT upon their excellent and expensive Pro lenses.

      Same with their Pro bodies and Pro Services.

      You get millions of dollars of FREE publicity and exposure when people see a NIKON name on the cameras at Events, so they cater to that market better than anyone else.
      Everybody knows about a Ferrari even though few drive or can afford one – that’s Nikon in photography!

      • Rafael

        I stand corrected 🙂

      • Just that there is no a Ferrari at every parking lot. Nikon is far from being an exclusive brand. Their bodies and lenses – and I’m writing about the pro stuff here – are way to cheap for that. I guess the 135 format Ferrari would be Leica. And Nikon probably the VW.

        • Jabs

          Leica is the BMW or Mercedes (profilers with exorbitant reputations).

          Nikon is the Ferrari (real race cars).
          Nikon is actually more expensive than Leica, as Leica does NOT have the extensive range of cameras or lenses that Nikon has.
          Leica is like a ONE TRICK pony, while Nikon delivers in the professional market in terms pros can use. You can’t put together an extensive Leica system, as there are no parts to do this.
          Nikon has some very expensive gear and since most pros shoot with more than two bodies, then their systems price is a lot more than Leica shooters.
          Leica shooters are like boutique shooters from a past and bygone era and they really do NOT (except for the new S2) have anything in their present arsenal to even equal Canon, much less Nikon.
          85 F1.4
          200 F2
          300 F2.8
          400 F2.8
          500 F4.0
          600 F4.0
          24-70 F2.8
          70-200 F2.8 VR2

          Add these up for a clue – LOL!
          Back in the film days, my extensive collection of Nikons and lenses from 24mm to 300 mm and tele-converters was worth over $40,000 of F3’s, FA, N4004, N2000, N2002.
          Nowadays, the costs is even more prohibitive and two digital bodies (D3S) are almost $10,000. I also had a Leica and I could not find much in terms of lenses for it, so not comparable to Nikon, the race car and pro specialists that others try and be like.
          My perspective.

          • El Aura

            Leica did have 280 mm f/2.8, 400 mm f/2.8, 560 mm f/4 and 800 mm f/5.6 lenses for their R-system. And they were absolutely top-notch, some say even better than the Nikon ones.

            It is mainly their cameras which were lacking.

            • Jabs

              @El Aura.
              Sorry, but not about to argue the point, as I have looked at the shots from both Nikon and Leica and I prefer Nikon by far.
              The R series is not much.
              The M series is much better.
              The S2 is much better (Hasselblad Digital is superior) but nothing to connect it to as in available lenses.

              The used market and pros have better access to Nikons and also prefer them and over the years, I have seen lots of lens tests and have never concluded Leica as superior to Nikon except in a few cases.
              Leicas has great contrast for black and white photography but lacks the color quality of a Nikon lens is what I have found from using a part of the M system and from shooting alongside my brother, a Leica fan.
              Lens considered as better than what Leica has produced over the years:
              1. 55 F2.8 Micro-Nikkor and 105 F2.8 Micro-Nikkor
              2. 105 F2.5
              3. 75-150 F3.5 Series E zoom
              4. ANY 180 F2.8 ED-IF
              5. Any 85 F1.4
              6. 135 F2.0
              7. Any 200 F2.0 ED-IF
              8. 300 F2.0 ED-IF and 300 F2.8 ED-IF
              9. 400 F2.8 ED-IF
              10. 500 F4.0 ED-IF
              11. 600 F4.0 ED-IF
              12. Oh yeah – 58 F1.2 Noct (almost forgot this)
              and others including the new stuff such as 24 F1.4, 24-70 F2.8 and 70-200 F2.8 VR I and II.
              Leica has earned a reputation amongst snobs or artistes and they live there while Nikon produces frame after frame of excellence beyond them as I shot both systems as a test once in Manhattan and Leica lost in both black and white plus color slides. I shot – Kodachrome Pro 25 and 64, Ektachrome Pro 50, Fuji Velvia 50, 64T and 100, Agfapan B+W, Ilford B+W, T-Maxx 100 and 400, Fuji Neopan 100, 400 and 1600 B+W.
              However, my tests were with and against an M Series and I have never used the R-Series but read enough about them and their tests plus pictures to make a professional assessment of my own.
              Leica is well made but behind the times technically and optically and perhaps stuck there!
              Have you looked at Leica digital files lately?

      • Rafael

        still I would love to have my 20mm f2.8 upgraded to AFS …

        • Jabs

          You and everyone else wants updated lenses but we have to wait.
          In the pro world, the IMAGE of your equipment and results are first, so Nikon does things on their schedule as always.
          The pro image then filters down to the consumer at Nikon, or so it seems.
          Zooms are the priority and then fast primes seem next.

  • Artur

    Re-designed? Wont be Super ED glass?

  • Anonymous

    I would suspect Nikon does these types of upgrades because they can do it rather cost effectively. Also, perhaps it gets their manufacturing equipment set up and heading in the right direction for future releases that are a little more than just an upgrade like this one.

    Perhaps they sell more of the lower end lenses but you sell one of the 200mm and it is equal to selling a handful of other lenses. I would almost guarantee that it doesn’t cost a whole lot more to make the 200mm than a 70-200 in proportion to the mark up.

    Nikon knows what they are doing..they are one of the biggest and best camera companies on the planet and have access to a ton of info we know nothing about.

    • Bob

      If the lens formulation is still the same, then it’s a matter of upgraded electronics. Sort of like upgrading the computer. Nikon changes the nameplate and charges and extra $1k. Good way to increase margins.

      • nikkor_2

        “Nikon changes the nameplate and charges and extra $1k. Good way to increase margins.”

        I think there’s a reason for the change here: Nikon is attempting to sell the 200mm f/2 to pros covering indoor sports; so, I think Nikon will upgrade more than the electronics (or the nameplate).

        Whether for use photographing college basketball or pro ice hockey (or a number of other indoor sports), I’d suggest there’s a real need here to get the Nikkor 200mm f/2 AF performance ‘snappy fast’.

  • fathoz

    please….i want a D700 replacement too…

    • Damien L

      There will be no D700 replacement announced until March 2011 with a late autumn release in 2011.

      • My guess is even later, D4 and new sensor first.

        • Anonymous

          Not necessarily, first D95 before D400 is an example.

          • rhlpetrus

            Still a rumour, let’s see if it materializes, I’m still seeing the D400 first.

        • As I’ve hypothesized on my site:

          D700s first
          D4 next
          D3x replacement last

          This keeps the D3s sensor, which has no competitor, in production through the D4 launch, it keeps the best pixel camera in production through the D4 launch, and allows them to position the D4 specifically as a workhorse in the middle. Almost every other combination of things they could do doesn’t work from a marketing standpoint or requires us to believe that Nikon has sensor capabilities beyond that which they’ve shown.

          • nikkor_2

            Thom’s post makes much sense, in my opinion.

          • D700s is not really a new camera. So it’s still the new sensor in a D4, then in a D800/900, as they have always done.

          • PHB

            Well we are pretty sure that they have worked on an 18MP sensor. And they are facing competition from Canon. So a D700 model with an 18MP sensor might possibly be on the cards.

            I agree that keeping the D3s sensor in production makes sense. I do wonder if going to metal in the D95 might be something to do with that. Putting that sensor in a D95 body next year when they have built out production on the lightweight FX zooms could make sense.

            What is going to determine all of this in practice is what the yields are from the Sony sensor fab. If they can produce D3x sensors at a competitive price I would expect to see them drop the price on that one. If they can cut the cost of making masks, we can expect the range to be differentiated by resolution in future rather than have a small number of sensors being recycled in the down market cameras.

            • Richard

              Does anyone have any intel on Sony’s yields? Especially compared to other fabs?

      • Anonymous

        How do you know? How long Nikon can keep with the 12mp & more than 2 yrs old D700 being their only mainstream (affordable and reasonably sized) FX body, while surrounded by more-mp DX of their own, and other FF by competitors? Yes, more megapixels are not everything but something of importance. If not, who wants to return to 6mp 😉

      • Casual_Thoughts

        Perfect timing, my old D70 bit the dust. I was letting my girlfriend use it. I just bought a D300s and it rocks for sports and the crop factor is great for wildlife. The D95 will be a nice second camera to share with the gf. The specs look like a good jump in features on the lower end.

  • Marc W.

    Mark my words, price for 200mm will go up with new features.

    Current B&H price for 200mm f2 is $ 4,799.00.

    • WoutK89

      you have been paying attention lately? It is usual for a new lens to be more expensive than the previous version 😉

    • Based upon yen/dollar exchange at the two introductions, the new version should be almost 20% more expensive, but I’m betting Nikon will put it at US$5199 or somewhere thereabouts, trying to keep the increase to no more than 10%.

  • Has anyone used the older 200mm? I can’t imagine how nice that is, and the new one could be pretty pricey.

    • Yes. The current 200mm f/2 is either the best or second best lens Nikon has produced, depending upon who you ask (the 300mm f/2.8 is the other one). It’s absolutely tremendous even wide open, and it tolerates all the TCs very well.

      • nikkor_2

        Here, I’ll — politely — disagree with Thom.

        With no doubt in my mind, the current Nikkor 400mm f/2.8 VR is the greatest Nikkor made to date; the glass, the AF — it’s just a fantastic package.

        Coupled to the D3S or D3, the 400mm f/2.8 generates stuff with rock-solid clarity and beautiful color; the existing 400mm f/2.8 is outstanding glass.

        Use it once and you’ll be hooked.

        • +1 on that
          The 200mm 2.0 is my favourite Nikkor glass, but whenever I’m asked what I think the ultimate lens made by Nikon is I go for the 400mm 2.8 – I even use it for shooting portraits.

  • Del-Uks

    Let’s hope for a D700 replacement for november then…

  • D90 replacement in September.. In stores October/November?

    • Vandyu

      Maybe I missed it, but anyone know which kit lens Nikon will pair with the D95? Don’t they usually announce a new lens with the new body?

      • spidercrown

        there was a patent filed sometime ago for 18-135mm VR, if i’m not wrong.

  • D40-owner

    I believe the update to the 200mm f/2 makes sense.
    It is true that the current version is uber-sharp, has amazing bokeh and decent VR, but it has a major flaw in contra light. If you have the sun or a strong light source in your shot the image becomes hazy, with much less contrast.
    So adding the N coating will for sure improve on this.

    But pleeeease Nikon, keep the SuperED, insane sharpness, and bokeh…

  • As they say on the internets: w00t w00t!
    Just another month!

  • And what the new TC 14 and 17… will ?

  • Dweeb

    Like I said yesterday, I couldn’t see them showing at Photokina just with the August consumer stuff. But why TH are they so obsessed updating 5 grand exotic lenses when the 80-400 languishes, and the 24-70 and the 300 ƒ4 still lack VR? Someone Call Thom!

    • WoutK89

      80-400 is a bigger update to a lens than adding VRII and Nano to an already great existing lens. The more they update old lenses with new technology the sooner other lenses will be updated 😉

      • Dweeb

        The 80-400 would need a total re-design as you say. Just like the 70-200 II received. It was Nikon’s first VR lense, released years behind Canon who justifiably ruled the market at that time due to their IS feature Nikon lacked.

        I expect some of the older re-designs when they occur also eliminate arsenic additives in the glass. I wonder how many of Nikon’s old lenses still use it.

        But as usual the high end prosumers lose out for another year.

        • Eric Pepin

          your not really loosing out much.

  • I have the current 200mm f/2 and LOVE it – by far my fav lens in my bag and anticipating this probable release.

    • Victor Hassleblood

      I envy you. It’s just a god damned sexy piece of tech. I wish I had frequent use for this lens in my photography so I could justify the purchase. Well, I haven’t.

      • Truth is, unless one shoots macro or products all the time, these lenses are not worth getting. My 105 Micro rests in the box, only now and then I grab it. I’d rather have som WA fast primes like an 18mm or even a PC WA for landscapes and architecture.

        • 200 for macro? Didnt you meant

          “unless you shoot awesome portraits, lowlight sport, PJ, fashion, and portraiture” you dont need this lens? Which other lens will blur background 2m away from group of three girls?

          • A Macro lens for sports and PJ? Usually AF on macro lenses are slow and tend to hunt a bit depending on subject. And most PJs use 70-200mm and 24-70mm as their basic lenses, for a reason. Fast AF in all situations, enough light thru, great IQ and versatility.

            200mm for portraiture? I wouldn’t use that most of the time. More like an 85 f/1.4.

            Fashion, yes, could work, but why not just the 70-200mm, much more versatile? The extra f-stop would make a difference?

            • I think I’m making a mistake here, I thought this was the macro version of the 200mm, sorry, my bad!

        • Eric Pepin

          what ? maybey our confusing the 200 micro lens ? the 200 f2 is for fashion and indoor sports.

          • nikkor_2

            Certain outdoor sports, too.

            Canon’s 200mm was in use at a major tennis tournament last weekend; here, the pros are constrained — like basketball — to a ‘super tiny’ shoot area. The 200mm was an excellent focal length, given the location of the shoot area at the tournament.

          • Yes, I mixed things up, sorry.

  • Jacobus

    D90 replacement next month?Well 1 More month to wait.. Hopefully this is true and a done deal this September.

    • Anonymous

      Yes, it will be called D90s.

      Also it will use the new 16MP sony sensor. The new sony will be announced around aug 17. We know that Nikon has to wait an extra month after a sony announcement (that’s the deal they have in place) to announce a camera that will use a sony sensor.

      • Anonymous

        “s” suffix is only used for minor upgrades, but anything expected is far more than an upgrade; Nikon will possibly follow the Canon way (7D) by merging D300 & D90 line.

        • Jacobus

          Well, if ever it would be called a D90s.. Why would Nikon make the camera super hot? with an upgraded MP count, faster FPS, and other? (This is based on rumors though). I think Nikon will name it other wise. But either way it would be a great camera. Just waiting for the perfect time to buy which is after it gets released.. Ow, And just in time for Christmas. Nikon better build a boat load or 2 to anticipate demands.. Which will include me!! hahaa

  • Dale

    So, I need some shopping advice.

    I’d like to start doing some professional work, mostly portraiture, on the side. I have an old D40 which has served me pretty well, but its limits mean there is no way it’s going to be able to do the job. I also need to update glass. I’ve been looking at the D300s – haven’t thought much about glass. I’m probably happy working within the DX format, although FX would, obviously, be a better choice. My budget is such that body and glass are going to be a bit of a zero sum game – extra dollars on the FX sensor mean less (much) for glass. I’d be open to going with the better body, and just renting glass until I can get enough business to afford to purchase.

    Any thoughts on what I should buy? And when? Right now seems like a mistake, but I don’t necessarily want to wait several months for new models to come out (and be able to go with one of those, or try to pick up an older model at clearance).

    Appreciate any thoughts.

    • Try DPReview forums, much better for opinions/info as you’re asking, this is a rumor site:

      • WoutK89

        or try the forum on this site 😉 you can find in the top of the page

    • Jabs

      Buy used equipment and then save up for newer gear after you make some money.

      Lens – used 180mm F2.8 ED or 80-200 F2.8 ED are best for portraiture on a budget.
      Body – your choice of used full frame bodies (expensive) or even D2x series, D200 and D300.

      Start with a used Pro body and then learn your craft with them. Do NOT start with a great amateur body, as you will learn and then THINK like an amateur plus make it harder to ‘unthink’ your learned behavior.
      Pro bodies are generally more accurate and the learning curve from one Nikon pro body of a past generation to the new generation is thus easier.

    • nikkor_2

      … or try

      If I were you, I’d be tempted to buy a used D700 and a used 85 f/1.4; it’s a dynamite combination for portraiture.

      • Ken Elliott


        The D700 and 85mm f/1.4 combo is a money maker.

    • jastereo

      I’d be looking for a cheap or used D90 and the best FF glass I could get. Or wait and get the new D95 body when it comes out to go w/your new glass. No way I’d even be looking at a D300s right now – especially not knowing what the D95 is really going to be and even more so if you don’t need the tougher body over the D90. If you did that you could probably sell your D90 body later for about what you can get one for now (if you wanted to upgrade). D90 is that great a deal right now.

      • Richard

        I would not recommend the D90. The metering system is essentially the same as that of the D40 and simply is not that good, especially compared to the metering on any of the pro bodies. I think that there would be a much higher percentage of “keepers” with the pro body because of this or a the very least a whole lot less post processing. The D700 will also have much, much better high ISO performance in situations he is likely to encounter.

    • Dale

      Thanks for all the thoughts – hadn’t really considered used, but that might be a great choice.

      Appreciate all the feedback.

  • iamnomad

    As with so many other posters I have to also say: please Nikon just update the D700 already (I’m just sick to death of all these small sensor camera updates).

  • prajyot

    What about 300mm F4 with VR…? or 400mm f4?

  • comicalalien

    What are you people? – SUCKERS?

    What is all this speculation and second guessing?

    What’s wrong with the D90 or D700 for that matter?

    Enjoy what you have! I do with the D90!

    When the new cameras arrive, and only if they are much better than the current cameras, then it is worth upgrading.

    It can be so simple. Why waste money on an incremental improvement?

    If there are large improvements then it becomes more or less justified.

    Otherwise money is thrown down the drain.

    Cheers, and have a nice day!


    • Martin L

      I’m eagerly waiting since I’ve been planning on getting a D90 for a few months. Makes sense to make for the new version instead of getting the current now.

  • martin

    oh noes, not white!11 🙁

  • brave new world

    200/2 what a nice surprise … just the price tag prevents me from reserving one
    including a 1.4 converter this would be just GREAT

  • Anonymous

    I understand the D95, but what’s the point of that 200mm f/2 while many other lenses are on waiting list like,

    * WA primes of moderate aperture, eg. new design of 20mm f/2.8 & 16mm f/3.5
    * Walkabout FX lenses for D800/D900, eg. 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 VR & 24-120 VR f/4
    * 70-200mm f/4 VR
    * Kit lens for D95 (16-55mm or 18-135mm VR) that may be balanced by the possibly smaller body weight than D300

    • WoutK89

      70-200/4.0 is not really on the waiting list, its far in the back of the list. More important is 200 micro, 80-400VR and wideangle + moderate tele primes, I forgot about the others, but I am sure there lenses not yet covered by Nikon in 1 lens (70-200VRII/2.8 if you really NEED the lengths)

  • hm
    replacing perfect lenses and keeping those with many issues is really smart. 🙁

    • Casual_Thoughts

      I’m sure the markup on this one is good for the bottom line.

  • Elv

    The New Blue-White color is Not really to Read, also the Nr-Admin comments Not readeble on my iPhone. Please Change back to normal colors.

  • CC cutter

    For crying out loud, nikon when are you going to release the 600 F 2.8 VR ????

  • John

    Come on Nikon – spend some time upgrading the many lenses in your portfolio that really need it that will outsell the 200/2 VR-II by 10 or 100:1.
    Also, why the September announcement of a D90 replacement – does this mean availability in Oct/November? Yuk.
    I’m interested in new products becoming available for use in the summer for vacations and whatnot as well as late summer/early fall for school functions. Obviously the pros have a different kind of schedule as well as those in the Southern hemisphere.
    That mirror-less EVIL camera needs to be announced and available soon or you might as well wait until next spring – and lose more sales to the m43 guys.


  • :o( I was expecting something “affordable” for me…another lens I could never reach…

    ..ok…see you next year…


    Some COMPACT COOL PUKE coming very soon…

  • viTRifY

    Just speculating, but let’s say Nikon wait’s until early 2011 to release a D700 successor, any idea what lens they will release with the new body? After all, it seems like most lens announcements have been made for 2010 unless we get an early xmas present

  • Is the 39 AF points still a valid spec? I find it hard to believe Nikon would start a new AF system on an intermediary body.

    • I believe so, it will definitely have a new, better AF.

    • spidercrown

      possible a reduction/downgrade from the current 51 point af?

  • What great news!
    I was thinking over buying a 200mm some time ago. But I wanted to wait for the updated version. Nikon currently makes my dreams come true. The next lens I’ll buy is a 85mm. After that a 35mm and then properbly the 200mm. Exactly like the release time frame from Nikon ;).

  • TomB

    So where does that leave the “prosumer” customer?

    I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of my D200, but getting to shoot the D3 recently, I’m really looking forward to a similar ISO range in a smaller, and more affordable, package.

    Am I stuck with an updated D300? I’ve been sitting it out because I figured a D400 would be due soon. But that doesn’t seem to be the case.

    So what’s a prosumer to do???

  • It looks a little disappointing, with most of the new lenses being upgrades of the older ones, but still we can be assured of the most updated technologies! 🙂

  • hah

    I’d live a 200 vr II nanocoated so I can find a vr1 version that doesn’t cost two arms and two legs.

  • Kensmokecrakrokwell

    I have a d300 and seriously need a camera with a better iso. Sure…. its a great camera, providing you have good light or a good flash. If this d95 does not have iso capabilities equivalent to or better than a d700 it will be an epic fail for nikon. But I’m so excited! Nikon will have something wonderful in store for all of us.. I can feel it.. its a coming. If not ill just get a d700 and be happy.

  • Jonas

    Hi guys

    Wouldn’t 135/2 be up for a re-design AF-S G ?
    Or 105/2?

    AF-S VR (1) 200/2 is one of Nikons best lenses already right?
    Why upgrade?

  • Why not throw in also 200mm 2.8 VR!

    And why still no VR on 300mm f/4.0!!! All other telephoto lenses already had TWO variations, one with VR1 and now with VR2, all except 300/4.0!

    • danny

      yeah why not updating their 180/2.8

  • Smudger

    WoW. A 200/2 VRII!!!!!!!!!!!

    We were all desperate for that one.

  • I have a D300s and seriously speaking, it’s a great camera. Except for its ISO capabilities. A D700 equivalent DX body will be very welcome 🙂

    • Rogger


  • John

    My guess based on all of the rumors are:

    D90 replacement gets a more robust build quality and has a higher MP count maybe 16MP and will be the D300s replacement in a DX format.
    Nikon D300 series will be replaced with an FX format with a similiar build quality to the D700 with more MP maybe 24.5. Of course video will be included in both camera’s. Personally, I shoot stills only and have no use for video. I’d much rather have other enhancements like better dynamic range and lower noise.

    Just a thought.

    • Nikon ought to introduce 2 lines of cameras, one with video, and another without but with better dynamic range and lower noise. In that way, consumers would be able to select the one that suits their needs 🙂

      • Charlie Martin

        The problem with two different lines of DSLR’s would entail a very expensive start up cost and there is a chance that Nikon may not recoup all of their costs associated with it. A more logical option would be to offer both camera models with a video option.

  • Ric H



  • I predict you will will never see any more DSLRs without video. The impact of DSLRs on the entire imagery industry has been massive. Owning Nikon DSLRs with video onboard proved to me that this option is to me as a buyer quite necessary. The fact that the option does not detract from still makes a better camera.I owned a whole fleet of view cameras. I sold them while I still could retrieve my money but still lost a lot. B&H in NYC said stay with 35mm. They were right. I was very quoted on film versus digital, and now digital has taken over the market. Ansel Adams spent many months filming sequences with view camera and video on a present Nikon DSLR will beat them. When the D700 gets replaced with a FF with video I will try to justify the expense. Right now our D90 gets a lot of use. The replacement for the D90 will be a great camera. Nikon is still selling D90s and has waited VERY long to replace the D90 with a D95.

  • danny

    200/2 is a amazing lens, but please update the cheaper little brother too, aka 180/2.8 with AF-S as I can’t afford 200/2.
    And don’t forget, 105/2 and 135/2 too…

  • decemberlight

    Where will used 200mm f/2 price go ?

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