Some last minute Nikon D3100 updates

I got some info about the mystery switch on the Nikon D3100 - the body has two new controls:

  • To the right of the mode dial is a sliding switch which arcs around it (similar to the Panasonic G1, GH1, G2).  This selects drive modes between Single, Continuous, Self-timer and Quiet (which holds the mirror up until you let go of the shutter release after a shot).
  • Above the multi-selector on the back and a bit further to the left towards the screen is a lever to activate live view, and inside the pivot point of the lever is a red button to start video recording.

And some more video details:

  • Video options: 1080 24 fps, 720 30/25/24 fps, and 640x424 24 fps.
  • The D3100 video is H.264, with 16 bit 24 KHz audio, in a .MOV container.  The 24 fps is actually a proper 23.976 fps that video professionals expect.
  • AVCHD video codec : the D3100 just stores a single .MOV file for each movie in the same directory as your still photos, so it is technically not AVCHD, but it uses the same technology.
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  • First At Last

  • Hi Admin, Does the D3100 has a Live view Exposure?

  • You’re fast 😀

    • Actually it is my second “First post”, but the last time it was deleted.

      • Geoff

        I guess you didn’t get the hint?

        • made my day… 😀


    Any news on manual control over aperture, shutter, or ISO during video recording?

    • Anonymous

      uhhh set the camera for M mode then youre set lol

    • +1 for the question

      • QuiBobJinn

        Hmmm…if it’s getting a lever for focus type, maybe we’ll see the return of WB, ISO, and QUAL buttons on the back.

        • QuiBobJinn

          and by lever for focus-type, I meant drive mode. Operating on four hours of sleep isn’t pretty.

        • Anonymous

          Sorry, no WB, ISO, and QUAL buttons on the back.

      • Craig Grunwell

        +1 or First are both pointless wastes of time. Why bother? I don’t understand. 😛

        • Zoetmb

          Because this is what passes for communication today from idiots with absolutely nothing to contribute. It’s part of the disease that causes people to send out 180 tweets a day with such gems as, “I’m going to the drug store” or “I’m thirsty” (oh, excuse me, it would be “goin 2 drug stor” and “im thrsti”). We have become a society that is so obsessed about our own egos and “feeling good” that we translate any signs of life into an achievement that we feel we must communicate to the world.

          Meanwhile, in terms of education, we’re now about 25th in the world as we produce a nation of message-typing (or copying or re-tweeting) idiots, obsessed with 15-second celebrities, thug rappers and our own unenlightened, moronic and poorly written postings which mostly just “mark territory.”

          I bet the parents of those who write “first” and “+1” constantly told their little spoiled darlings that they were geniuses as they sat glued to the television consuming whatever piece of crap spewed their way (when they weren’t playing video games, which was considered an “academic exercise” in their households). And I bet a lot of these morons actually attended a college. (Why someone pays $80K in tuition over four years to accomplish binge drinking, I’m not sure.)

          People blame the economy or the government for a lack of jobs, but the truth is that there are plenty of jobs if one has the right high-level skills. The company I consult for can’t find enough iPad designers and I just noticed 25 job listings, mostly located in San Francisco, for audio and other technical engineers (real engineers, not button pushers). But we seem to be proud of being uneducated and uninformed idiots. We never judge anybody by how smart or accomplished they are; we only judge them by how much money they make.

          And as long as I’m on a rant:
          loose=not tight
          as in “He’s got a screw loose and he’s going to lose his mind.”

          their=belongs to
          they’re = they are
          as in “They’re putting their video games over there.”

          Let’s write like we actually graduated the fifth grade.
          END RANT

          • Anon


  • Fred

    Must know if it has a external mic in!

  • SimonC

    Thanks, Admin.

    Good to hear that they have moved the AF servo mode to a proper dial that is accessible one-handed. This is better than burying it in the menu or on a dial that is on the left-side of the body (like the pro bodies) that requires the other hand to change.

    Too bad the 1080 mode wasn’t 30p but it’s a step in the right direction. Perhaps the D95 will have that.

    • Anonymous

      It’s not AF servo mode, it’s drive mode. As in, press the shutter release for one photo, or hold it for continuous photos, or the self-timer.

      • SimonC

        Sorry, my bad. I mean drive mode!

  • Gary

    I believe these next generation of Nikon cameras will be the next step for video in dslr’s. Nikon debuted the feature, but Canon stole the thunder and has had it until now.

    This new model will signal the end of Canon’s dominance in video dslr’s. In fact, if the rumors are true then this lowly model will trump all existing Canon models for ease of use for the vast majority of consumers. The key is a functional AF during video recording. If Nikon has pulled this off then this becomes a very hot seller.

    Canon will no doubt follow suit, but when? They almost have to release the rumored 60D soon, and my guess is it will have their new Digic V with their version of usable AF during video.

    • meh

      You know what else I heard, Arnold Schwarzenegger will be president in 2012, the same year the Lions win the Superbowl.

      What makes one so sure as to the future of a piece of gear that hasn’t hit the market yet?

    • Anonymous

      you, sir, have serious issues.

      Canon has way more experiences in the video market than Nikon does.

  • zzddrr

    I would be more interested in an HDR function that can be customized or some innovative guide/aid (e.g. in the viewfinder) making panoramas and or adapters to capture 3D still images.

    But I guess nowadays still images are not important for Nikon.

  • James

    First! Just kidding…

    Great news about the drive mode lever. I was hoping that was what it was for.

  • Joe Boston

    Nothing is ever good enough for zzddrr. A 24 mp, magnesium alloy body with D90 form factor and 7 FPS with full 1080p and 51 point AF for under 1500 dollars will get released, and it would STILL not be good enough.

    I can always count on zzddrr to bring the necessary negativity to the otherwise pleasant comments.

    • zzddrr

      Joe Boston – At this time I did not complain. 🙂 I just mentioned couple of features that would be interesting to see in a camera like this D3100 foolishness. Then I ponted to the fact that nikon puts to much emphasis in this video.

      But now since you mentioned that I should complain 🙂 then let’s talk about the issue here. Nikon is just 2 yrs behind Canon when it comes to 1080p. This is a fact. Nikon cannot even make 1 decent sensor without sony to shoot 1080p. (Again this is a fact)

      The point I was trying to make that Nikon may chasing a dead cat with this video and got into a territory where it clearly does not have much experience. In order to bring upto the level of sony, panasonic, and canon the Nikon video skills I am afraid that Nikon’s efforts went to the expense of the still images. Besides, sony and pana have pro video business units that are sitting and waiting for Nikon to take away their business. 🙂 That is my point.

      I would rather see 24Mp 16 bit still dslr than 14Mp ergonimacal dslr/video disaster. I am afraid the usefulness alone of these little built in video functions are equal with posting shaky videos of fat people on youtube. You really have to know what you are doing to get excellent quality out of them. I don’t have those skills and I assume many of those who just want a decent camera for landscapes are in the same situation. On the other hand, I want to emphasize that I can understand those who have the skills to get the video in a dslr. For those it can be valuable for many of us we want a dedicated tool.

      Have you tried out the new sony NEX video camera (you know the one that has the same 14Mp sensor)? Well, there is a big difference to work with a dslr and something that was designed to shoot video.

      Nikon should have developed a dedicated video camera. I think Thom Hogan was absolutely right about this.

      • Segura

        Nikon has always been an optics company. That is why they also make binoculars, rifle scopes, microscopes, ophthalmic, and professional scanning.

        Canon is known for camcorders, copiers, printers, and calculators.

        Where Canon has R&D in camcorders and video, Nikon does not. Who do you think made the first lens for Canon cameras? That’s right . . . Nikon.

        If you want video, then stop whining and get a Canon. They will ALWAYS be ahead of Nikon. If you care about pictures, high ISO low noise sensors, and superb ergonomics, then you shoot Nikon and don’t whine about it.

        • zzddrr

          Segura – slowly line by line please read what i wrote. Now once you’re done with that you may want to try it again. I hope after 2-3 reads you will get my point.

          • Banned

            Va manger une pomme.

  • Yianni

    It will be interesting to see if they give it stereo mics or a mic input.

    I mean, giving it such quality video and pairing it with rubbish mono audio and no mic input would be a killer.

    • Anonymous

      The built-in mic is mono. As for a mic input… you’ll have to wait and see.

  • Alex

    24 Khz audio! LOL! I know DSLR video freaks don’t believe in recording any sound (because all they make is music videos), but I didn’t think it would be that bad!

    • Anonymous

      Well, we can always hope for a firmware update…

    • Anonymous

      The D5000 and D90 only did 11 KHz, so it is a bit of an improvement.

      • Banned

        Indeed lol.

    • zzddrr

      Alex – can you put into context?

      • Anonymous

        Professional video cameras record audio at 48 KHz. Music CDs are 44.1 KHz.

        • zzddrr

          Thanks, now I got it. For some reason I was thinking about something else.

    • Karlosak

      There is still hope that 24 kHz is frequency response and the actual sampling rate is 48 kHz. Otherwise this is a big letdown – HD video needs a pristine audio too – this is nearly cell phone quality…

      There are many of us who would like to use some decent microphone like Rode stereo Videomic directly with the camera, without the need for an external portable audio recorder. What a pity.

  • Isn’t the announcement supposed to be in about 10 minutes?

    • yep, 9 min now, my fingers are itching 🙂

      • King Of Swaziland

        It’s midnight eastern, where’s my announcement? (all of the wives are hounding me)

  • okay then I’ll stay up. Maybe do a countdown or something.

  • safeg

    Last 2min, 🙂

  • Segura

    WTF is it???? Announce!!!

  • Enesunkie

    Ok, would somebody get Nikon a watch!

    • Enesunkie

      Ok, a minute late isn’t too bad.

  • zzddrr
  • yo
  • Simon
  • Anonymous

    Except for the swivel screen, it’s a better camera in many ways than the D5000.

  • Enesunkie
  • Bob

    Nikon D3100 digital SLR announced and previewed
    Nikon has unveiled the D3100, its lattest entry-level offering and its first DSLR that can record full 1080p HD videos. Successor to the popular D3000, it is built around a 14.2 CMOS sensor and a 3 inch LCD. As well as movies it gains Live View shooting, a wider ISO range ( 100-3200 expandable to 12800) and a host of small revisions. The camera will be available soon at a retail price of £579.99 / €599 with the 18-55mm VR lens. We’ve been given access to a pre-production version of the camera which we’ve used to prepare a hands-on preview, looking at the changes Nikon has made to its best-selling DSLR

  • Anonymous
  • zzddrr

    Video wizzards please tell me what you think of this great feature of the D3100:

    Maximum Recording Time:10 min

  • nikon boy
  • Wildlife Shooter

    No mention that I can see of manual exposure for video. Any details on it?

  • Harry Couvert

    There we go again with the no 25 fps in 1080.
    Did they not learn from the 5DII?

  • Is there a limitation of video length as it was in D90? I was so sad to see I was only able to film 5 minutes in HD before I had to restart the shot. 🙁

  • Oh, sorry, I see. 10 Minutes!
    WTF 🙁

  • tharon

    Please look:

    ewerything is all clear

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