Joe McNally on shooting with the Nikon D4

Joe McNally has a post on his blog on shooting with the Nikon D4. He was impressed by:

"File detail and forgiveness in the shadows.
Responsiveness of the camera in terms of intuitively good exposures and autofocus.
Video quality and new features.  Wow.  We’re in the final stages of post right now for what we shot.  Check back sometime next week for the full scoop.  It’s a game changer.
New rocker buttons for moving the auto-focus cursor.
Ease of shifting the auto-focus modes.
Size and clarity of the lcd.
The fact that I dropped one and it kept working.
Plus, none of us had tried to light an elephant with an SB-910 and a Lastolite tri-grip before."

And  to answer your question Joe, as you probably know, the Nikon D800 is coming 🙂

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  • Jabs

    Yeah – Thanks Administrator, as I was just wondering when Joe would be commenting on the D4 as I checked his Web site and nothing except now.


    • check my latest post – just refresh your browser

      • Jabs


        LOL – I am responding to your post about Joe McNally – right.

        • sorry, I am loosing it tonight 🙂

          • DJCarbon43

            Hehe it’s cool we all are

          • Jabs


            Yeah – thought so – LOL.

            Good work and thanks a lot.

            Get some rest, but when you wake up, there might be a D800 in your Inbox – lol.

  • Nikon Luver43

    I love how the Nikon products are starting to look more like Canon, after all Nikon has copied everything else. VR, SWM etc.

    • DFive


      • Nikon Luver43

        Look it up, it is true. I love my Nikons but Nikon was beat by 10 years on SWM, several years for VR to show up, several years for full frame and several years for full frame 1080p video.

        • Jabs

          LOL – dream on!

          Nikon was first with AF motors in lenses – F3AF System had a 80mm F2.8 and a 200mm F3.5 ED-IF-AF.

          Nikon was first with a Pro digital DSLR.

          Nikon was first with VR.

          Canon just beat them with a Full frame or FX body!

          3 to 1.

          • Discontinued

            You are such an annoying fanboy.
            SWM in the F3AF ? ? ? Sure, Jabs. And yes, Canon was first to implement IS into interchangeable SLR-lenses in 1995. You know Jabs, some people like Nikon better without constantly twisting facts, words and thoughts. Actually some people like Nikon better especially for their more conservative approach (like no LCD and the conservative manuals of Nikon’s F4 back in 1988). If you are not one of them, you should seriously consider to project your fanboyism onto another brand.

            • Jabs

              Seriously now – It is a real urban MYTH that Nikon is conservative.

              Nikon often introduces Revolutionary and Evolutionary ideas, concepts or Technology before other Manufacturers.

              They often do this in lower end bodies or Equipment and then finally introduce that in their Pro gear.

              Canon WAS not the first to introduce in-lens I.S. – so perhaps you research yourself.

              Many people here call you a fanboy or fangirl when you refute their claims, so that makes THEM an idiot without facts or one’s trying to tell us details that are clearly untrue.

              Back up your claims with facts and data and we will all be better.

              Nikon was first with these things:
              1. TTL Meter in the body that metered with all heads and lenses in the F3 Series
              2. Matrix Metering in the Nikon FA Series
              3. In Lens motors in the F3AF series
              4. First with Titanium bodies and Titanium Shutters
              5. First to offer 1/250, 1/500 and i/16,000 sec X-sync or Flash Sync.
              6. First with Removable Heads
              7. First with a Pellicle Mirror High Speed body
              8. First with NASA certified 35mm SLR bodies
              9. First to offer 250 and larger Exposure backs for their SLRS
              10. First to offer the capability to leave the leader out of the 35mm cassette so that you could reload the cartridge or use things such as Polaroid’s Instant Slide without cracking the ‘cassette’ and possibly scratching the film inside.

              YES, Nikon has taken a wait and see attitude often BUT they have also pioneered more FIRSTS than any other Camera Manufacturer in the world.

              D4 – first to use new digital card plus many other firsts!

              Don’t envy a person for their broad scope of knowledge and then equate this with ‘fanboyism’.

            • IanZ28

              You forgot to mention that Nikon was also first to offer video in a DSLR.

          • Jabs


            Yeah – forgot about the D90 and Video first.

        • BornOptimist

          It’s a fact that Nikon had products with VR before Canon had any IS product. Canon introduced IS in 1995 (EF 75-300), while Nikon had the first VR equipped camera in 1994 (700VR QD). It’s also a fact that Canon had SWM-driven lenses before Nikon had any AF-S lenses.

      • Nikon Luver43

        I don’t have to praise Nikon left and right to be a user. I have 4 Nikon bodies and $30,000 in Nikon lenses. Nikon has been beat in the following areas:

        Canon IS-1995
        Nikon VR-2000

        Canon USM 1987
        Nikon SWM 1998

        Canon 1Ds full frame 2002
        Nikon D3 full frame 2007

        Canon 5D full frame 1080p video 2008
        Nikon D4 full frame 1080p video 2012

        • Jabs

          Well, you are right on TWO of four = 50% – LOL.

        • R R

          you guys seem to forget the D90 was the first DSLR with HD video EVER.

        • R R

          also Canon is playing catch up this time with the 1Dx which is Canon´s version of the successful D3s, they never thought a low count MP camera would be so popular among pros.. so they decided to COPY it. (and improve on it of course)

          but lets see how it holds against the D4 in real life.

          Canon is all about marketing, they make faxes and copiers.. and oh yes.. cameras too.

    • Tom

      Lol… I’ve never seen such a silly attempt to being a troll. See, if you really want to be an effective troll you have to say things that might be true.

      • Nikon Luver43

        Look it up, it is true. BTW, I shoot 2 D3, D300s, D7000 so stop being a fanboy and realize Nikon wasn’t the first to certain technologies.

    • iamlucky13

      I’ve forgotten who came up with each first, and I really don’t care. They’re both great technologies and we all benefit from them being available.

      The post is so irrelevant and obviously intended to be inflammatory it should be deleted.

      • Nikon Luver43

        I don’t have to praise Nikon left and right to be a user. I have 4 Nikon bodies and $30,000 in Nikon lenses. Just because I don’t bend over and take it from Nikon as a fanboy doesn’t mean I don’t like my gear. Would be nice if Nikon wasn’t a step behind. Nikon has been beat in the following areas:

        Canon IS-1995
        Nikon VR-2000

        Canon USM 1987
        Nikon SWM 1998

        Canon 1Ds full frame 2002
        Nikon D3 full frame 2007

        Canon 5D full frame 1080p video 2008
        Nikon D4 full frame 1080p video 2012

        • BornOptimist

          You still keeps harping on.
          Nikon came with VR in 1994, not 2000.

          BTW Nikon was first with video on DSLR (you just pick the categories where Canon are first here).

          When did Canon come with RGB sensors for metering?
          When did they have CLS on their flashes?

    • EnPassant

      Actually Nikon was first with their VR introduced 1994 on a compact camera:
      Canons IS debuted 1995.

      • Nikon Luver43

        Wow, who cares about point and shoots, I only care about SLR cameras not toys.

        • BornOptimist

          The VR in the compact camera is a lens technology, so it’s valid for any lenses.

        • Jabs
          • Rob

            You are all missing the point: it’s not about who’s first; it’s about who’s best. And we all know the answer to that 🙂

            On the Joe McNally workshop in Vancouver starting in 7h (oops, better get to bed) so hopefully he’ll share his experience with us then.

    • Yes, you could say that nikon is copying canon, but then, why is the quality the same but nikon prices lower ? I mean, in my country the canon 70-200 II is more expensive than the 70-200 VR II, about 500 euros difference. Also, the D4 is a full 800 dollars cheaper than the soon-to-be-available 1Dx. Are you upset for being ripped off ?

    • Bryan V

      all the big cameras to me look like the F5 I’m not sure but I think that was a Nikon.

    • Pete


    • Dave

      WHO CARES!!!!!!!!

  • grev
  • pepito

    what a beast of a camera! any idea of when the D800 will be out without being necessarily optimistic?

  • texajoe

    What a great career Mr. McNally has had. He gets to use and test the cameras we drool over…

    • ron ben ben

      And drop them?

      • Patrik

        Ehrm, your supposed to be able to drop these puppies and they should hold up for that. That´s one of many reasons you pay this kind of money for a camera, you need to be able to rely on it, and it costs.

        I´ve dropped both my old Nikon D3 and a Canon Mark 3Ds, stuff have happened but they have been working like non-stop.
        That´s the difference between a working photographer that need gear that puts up with almost anything compared to a hobbyist that lets the camera lay down in a bag in between uses.

        I gladly pay for this, others dont. But people are different, thank you for that.

      • Any Anon


        Yes, he admits it & says the camera was still working. How about the lens?

  • For the first time Amazon is not taking pre-orders:
    Second option will be Adorama, probably tomorrow.

    • benck

      They just started taking orders. Or at least they added a Add to Cart button and I was able to place an order. Got email confirmation. Of course there is no known delivery date, but the order was placed.

  • Walk,respect,walk

    Pantera says it best, RESPECT! Cool shiez Joe giving Nikon Rumors a shout out!

    What are those wonderful fellas over at Nikon Rumors gonna do now? I mean, how to fill up the time? They’ve been bulldogging this camera now for months. I suggest they all go out, have a nice meal, and get hammered. Their work is done. At least until the D5. Which is a helluva camera, by the way. I’ve been shooting the prototype.


    Are you talking to me?
    No way punk
    Walk on home boy

    • Tom

      Are you drunk, high, or drunk and high?

  • El Scorch0

    Amazon pre-order just worked for me as well and received an email confirmation.

  • Landscape Photo

    Thanks for your efforts admin, you pinpointed D4 accurately. Now the D4 launch is somewhat over, time is for D800… Waiting for such a camera for many years, with some false hopes (D700x) and then delays (tsunami/floods), I hope to see it in my lifetime 🙂

    I’m almost sure a D800 would have dealt with Joe Mc Nally’s swamp photo even better than the D4. He used a 14-24mm @ ISO 100 under natural + artificial light mix. So it’s not a high-iso shot. Btw, the crew must have used a fog generator too; it doesn’t look natural but far enough to give that impression.

    • iamlucky13

      In the setup shots on his blog you can see the fog or smoke rolling out of a single point in the background.

      The one full-size ISO-6400 shot on the Nikon Australia site looks great at full resolution. There’s a modest amount of grain visible, but almost no pixel miscoloration and lots of detail.

      The video features are quite a step up from what Nikon offered before. Uncompressed live HDMI feed means a lot of flexibility for recording options.

      The magazine leak from yesterday mentioned something about smooth aperture adjustments in video mode, but I haven’t seen mention of it yet in the specs.

  • I hope they changed the source of that ridiculous rubber they were using before to coat the camera. I am fed up with trying ro protect my D700’s rubber from becoming dilated and peeling off. A step in this direction they seem to have taken, rising the position of the front control wheel, so that if the rubber becomes dilated, it will not hinder the wheel from a normal functioning regime.

    Other than that, the IQ on the mcnally article does not impress me, seen before, and I have a sneaking suspicion that the D3s will be on par with the D4 in the low-light behaviour.

    As a long term nikon user, I welcome the comeback of the ISO100, this is much needed for the pros, especially since you do not have to loose DR like in the D3/D700 to get it. You might loose for the new ISO50, but it will probably worth it if the occasion presents itself.
    All in all a relatively small upgrade over the D3s, but a highly expected one, the extra four megapixels are very welcome, so is the tweaked AF, I was just hoping the price would be decent, just as seen on the D3s, I mean, there is no carbon fiber body, is there ? Well, seeing that the trend for the super high price in the normal professional body has been set with the arrival of the 1Dx, I’m just glad I am a Nikon user.

    Cheers and best of light to everyone.

    • DFive

      New Rubber will be made by DUREX 😉

  • Hmm, this may actually sway me to spend some extra cash and buy the big D4 over the D800… Granted, I’d like to have the extra megapixels of the D800, Joe McNally’s thoughts on the D4 weigh pretty heavy with me.

    I’d love to see the DXOmark scores on this versus the D700, D800 and D3’s.

  • Hi Admin,

    Been doing great work on the D4 rumors over the past few weeks.

    But regarding the above post, whats the meaning of the “And to answer your question Joe, as you probably know, the Nikon D800 is coming :-)” comment?

    Any news on a D800 in the near future, as from what i was reading on NR in the past, possible D800 announcement next week on the 10th Jan, or its too close to the D4?

    • Read Joe McNally’s post, he tried to mess with [NR] 🙂

      • broxibear

        Hmmm…I think he was just frustrated that you posted the real deal, readers were able to comment on that, yet he had been testing the actual camera but wasn’t allowed to say a word about it lol ?.
        Bit of a cheap shot from Mr McNally…If he wasn’t so involved with nikon I’m sure he’d be reading nikonrumors to find out what was going on the Nikon world.

        • Ken Elliott

          McNally is a class act. I’m sure he was just poking fun at NR. And it can’t hurt NR that he mentions the site.

          • broxibear

            Hi Ken Elliott,
            You’re probably right, and it can’t hurt Joe McNally that he mentions nikonrumors lol.

          • I actually sat beside him, unknowingly, at the WPPI 2011 convention in vegas last year prior to his presentation. I have to say, I was actually quite disappointed in it. Here’s one of my biggest photographic idols, and basically he did a slide show with little explanation. If you had read Hot Shoe Diaries, you basically saw it. I was considering driving 10 hours to attend a workshop he held in Calgary last year, but after that, I’m glad I saved the effort.

      • +1

  • zOz

    Awesome but…
    D4 in US is 5 999 $ and in Europe… 5 800 € ???
    5 999 $ = 4 687 € !!!
    What the f**k?!

    • Carsten


      • zOz

        Sales Tax in US is about 6%, VAT in EU 20% but here, it’s near to 25% !!!
        5 999 $ + VAT difference = 5 350 €

  • Glenda

    Wow, so many of you Nikon fanboys have your personal worth set on the Nikon brand. It’s just a tool kids, calm down. Someone can’t make any points about Nikon and get attacked? Sad. I am glad there are users that are demanding of Nikon and don’t just bow down, bend over and take it.

    • cpm5280

      Admin, this kind of post is why we need a dedicated AI system to monitor troll posts and remove them automagically. Or maybe just a reddit-style comment voting system, to provide some means of highlighting/burying comments by usefulness?

      • Worminator

        Yes, comment downmodding at NR is lo-ong overdue. Though sometimes I wonder if there would be any comments left after the dust settled!

  • Psycho McCrazy

    D800, D7100, V2, J2, 24-70VR. We’ll be busy enough Joe, don’t worry!

  • derWalter

    Hey Administrator!

    I think it is time to open a D5 Tag on the right side 😛

    As mentioned in the interview, there are already prototypes out there!

    lets hunt em down!!!

  • jorg

    mmm, nothing with chase jarvis this time…maybe he gets a take on the D800 or D400…

  • Don´t know if my eyes are playing with me, but this samples in full res looks terrible to me.¤tProductTab=4&CategoryID=gp11zkm9

    Poor resolution and textures…

  • Groosome

    Joe, I’ll give ya $3000 for the one you dropped.

  • Sunny

    Dear Admin,
    Is any news regarding approximate date of Nikon D800 announcement ?
    I have been waiting for it more than a year.
    Thank you in advance.

  • Calibrator

    You should relabel this website to “Angry Wedding Photographers International”!

    What an embarrassing Kindergarten this has become…

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